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What just happened? I'm struggling with guilt

(9 Posts)
Onepollock Wed 05-Nov-14 14:48:43

I had a long runnig thread about my H who wasn't being very nice to me and drinking a lot. I had to have it deleted after I found out he was accessing my account.

I left in May with our 2 children who are 2 and 4. After 3 months of him refusing to move out and after I put in an application for divorce he agreed to move out coming back to the house one night a week and every other weekend to see the children with the agreement he wouldn't drink when he had sole care of the children.

Financially, I have helped him out of debt or covering household expenses while he is in debt. He has never helped me despite working part time. This is a big deal for me.

We had a counselling session which was dreadful. I'd been asking him for approx a year to go and he'd refused but after legal advice he came. He then spent the session telling the counsellor about my deep set anger issues as he calls them and I felt like I couldn't say anything. And afterwards said, you struggled with that session didn't you as you couldn't cope with the truth about your behaviour'. So,I said no to anymore sessions and he's saying its laughable because I asked for ages for us to go and then we go and I refuse any further sessions. I get the his point but the reality is not what he claims. He always ties me in knots.

We are now applying for decree Nisi and will begin financial mediation tomorrow. I want to stay in the house with the children as we're very settled there and I feel that the negative impact on them has been slight because we're sticking to their routine at home. He owns a flat which he can keep and I can buy him out but not 50:50 so he won't agree to it. He's going to pay me the min maintenance. If I ask for help of any kind be it financial or for help with children he tells me that if I can't cope I shoudln't have kicked him out.

Generally things are improving with the distance we've put between us. He threatens to move back in unless I give him the money he wants. I ignore this generally but it does upset me. He tells me I'm a bully and I'm aggressive and I will end up pushing everyone away if I treat them the way I treated him.

He refused to tell his father (to whom another thread could be dedicated) that we'd separated for 6 months. He rang last week and I told him that H had left. His father then wrote a letter to H which H showed me in which his Dad (ex GP) said well we always had our concerns about her postnatal depression! I have never been post natally depressed. Definite case of post marital depression and I haven't even seen the ffing man this year (nor has he tried to see his Grandchildren) but non the less a diagnosis of a mental health problem has been issued rather than it being anythign to do with his son's behaviour or his.

So, and very sorry for long post, but why do I feel guilty? I feel guilty that I have taken the children away from him, I feel guilty because he claims I have destroyed the marriage that he wanted to work - he says this alot but he didn't behave in a way that reinforced that. I feel sad (prob mainly tired) as I have a 2 year old who removes he pullups every night and then wets the bed! I think I've realised I have a problem with feeling too guilty but I think that also comes from the fact he has a way of telling me everyting is my fault. I am sure my expectations have been too great at points but I have never let him down.

WhereIsMYJonathanSmith Wed 05-Nov-14 14:56:35

I cant explain why you feel guilty but I am sure that there is no need for you to.

I guess it is a result of being with someone who is manipulative. You know deep down inside that what they are telling you is totally wrong but I think they keep on and on until they drum it in inspite of the fact you know it isnt true.

You will have to take a firm hold on your thoughts and keep telling yourself that you have done the right thing, for you and for your DC.

I felt the same as I went through my divorce. flowers

hellsbellsmelons Wed 05-Nov-14 14:57:30

Stop listening to his total shite!
Only communicate regarding access to the kids and money matters.
If he starts on you. Walk away or hang up etc...
Please contact Womens Aid if you haven't already.
They can help you see this for what it is.
Counselling was never going to work with an abuser. That's exactly what they do, as you've described which is why it's never recommended!
You know he's projecting. So stop listening to it.
And his charming father can FTFO!!

Also, try contacting Al-Alnon. They help people who have had to live with and cope with alcoholics. They can also give you some much needed support.

I've no idea how you can have him in the house with you as much as you do. You need to think of other ways around this! It's not good for you and it's not healthy.

Keep going and keep strong.

CogitoErgoSometimes Wed 05-Nov-14 14:58:44

If you're feeing guilty it's probably because this man is doing his level best to upset you and make you doubt yourself. I don't know what 'not very nice to me' meant in reality but, judging by the behaviour you're describing since the split, there's a strong whiff of emotional bullying and manipulation. Telling his family you had PND was straightforward manipulation ..... and that was presumably before you kicked him out.

Suggest you immediately stop letting him come round to your home and go No Contact for everything bar essential communications. His access to the children should be off-site because, all the time he is in your home, he can drip his poison into your ear. He cannot, for example, just move back in. Realise that you don't want to disrupt your children more than necessary but your children may be more upset by the atmosphere he is creating at home than by the fact that he is not under the same roof.

Tell your solicitor that mediation was a massive failure and let them deal with the financial details

ravenmum Wed 05-Nov-14 15:06:05

When did you go to the counselling, and what were you hoping to get from it?

Sounds like he's doing his best to deflect attention away from himself - it's an instinctive thing when you know you've been an idiot and don't like the feeling.

How do you feel about yourself? Are you liable to see the worst in yourself? Are you feeling as if you did act angrily, even though you know what really went on?

Joysmum Wed 05-Nov-14 15:36:56

Trouble is, when relationships go bad, that's the person that knows you best in the world.

You're struggling with guilt because he knows what strings to pull to get you to feel that way. Hopefully if you can begin to see it this way you'll find your metaphorical scissors to be able to cut those strings flowers

Onepollock Wed 05-Nov-14 15:55:53

I guess its retaining that clarity once you've separated that it was the right thing to do. We function ok over the children over very surface issues. and I suppose I want to develop that and move away from the hideousness as we are both going to be parents.

I went to counselling with him after a year of him refusing to go because I felt I had to after asking him to go for so long. When I said I didn't feel I could speak freely in the session he laughed at my and said I'm the most confident and aggressive person he knows and that I'm cleverly manipulating myself into the position of victim when it is in fact the reverse. In short a massive headfk.

I was angry at points when he ran out of money to pay our childminder beacuse he'd spent all his money on his car. or when he drank every night despite looking after the children alone (often asleep on the sofa out of ear shot of kids), and kept drinking even though he ran out of money. Also told me it was me with the problem about drinking and every knew I was uptight about it. So yes, I really did lose my temper sometimes because he always made everythign my fault. I'm slowly accepting that most people would lose their temper if told they didn't give a shit about their family, put social climbing above their husband and children (if I helped anyone out) and that I was a pathetic little girl for talkign to my family about ANYTHING!

However, and as always, there were good times. With no pressure on us we had a laugh together but as soon as that pressure came it turned bad. He was particularly unkind after our second child was born. Eg I didn't clean the house properly two weeks after her birth. Gosh he really does sound lovely!

I suppose its never the full picture though is it. I know I was naggy at points and he's accused me of never really committing to the relationship. He just plays dirty adn makes me doubt everything which I do by nature anyway! Just want this stage to be over and hopefully if I can buy him out it will be.

Thanks for all the advice. I do have good RL support but you feel so boring banging on about it all the time and some mornigns I wake up thinking what on earth just happened?!

HansieLove Wed 05-Nov-14 17:54:28

I think you need to see a lawyer because Ex is telling you what the financial implications will be, and the law may see it quite differently.
Interesting that FIL did not address his son's drinking. Like being drunk when caring for children?

ravenmum Wed 05-Nov-14 18:42:54

Have you tried counselling on your own? You can bang on about it as much as you like then! And is there any other arrangement you could make so that he doesn't have to stay at the house? Once a week sounds like an invasion of your private space. I'm so glad my children are older and I don't have to see my ex's face if I don't have to - I know that parents with younger children don't have that privilege, but your arrangement sounds unnecessarily stressful.

As Joysmum says, he knows exactly what strings to pull. My cheating husband had great ways of making me feel guilty too, even explicitly using his feelings about his mother's death (which I supposedly didn't care about) as an explanation for his behaviour changes. He made me out to be an unfeeling cow, which played on my poor self-image, and I'm still gradually untangling the accusations and working out that in fact he was not the super-loving, caring nice guy he made himself out to be. He'd say "*I'd never* [do whatever you did, which I've interpreted as evil]" or "*What kind of a wife does that?*", portraying himself as morally better than me, when all the time he was cheating, visiting sleazy hotels, dissing me to his girlfriend. I think this is fairly par for the course, deflecting. Isn't the "it's you who's uptight about it" thing also an absolute classic for drinkers?

The counselling wasn't a good idea, you found that out in the first session and you stopped. Good idea. He's going to interpret whatever you do as you being evil, so best have as little contact with him as possible. His father sounds like my FIL, a know-it all lecturer? Irritating as hell? No wonder their sons turn out that way...

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