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How can I stop EX's nastiness hurting me so much.(44 Posts)
We have a DD together but broke up before she was born.
I have done everything in my power to encourage a close relationship between the 2 of them. He has seen her almost every day (at my house) since she was born, other than when he has chosen to go away to stay with friends which could be up to a week at a time.
I even had his dad stay with me for a week when he visited from abroad so he could spend time with his granddaughter.
Ex basically hates me and thinks I am the worlds worst person. Nothing is ever his fault, ever - in his eyes he is perfect and I am shit. He accuses me of trying to keep him away from DD if I dare to ask him not to visit for one day, which coincided with the night before having to endure one of his verbal outbursts towards me. He accuses me of all sorts and when I question him on it he denies it all and said I'm twisting things and I'm nuts. I can't talk to him or have a normal conversation about it because he gets irate.
He is really affecting my wellbeing.
DD is 11 months so I have an entire lifetime of dealing with his verbal abuse. How can I let it stop bothering me? Is there anything else I can do to put boundaries in place?
You need to stop letting him into your home. Does he have his own place where he can see DD? It may be wise to see a solicitor to formalise the contact arrangements as it seems too much for him to see her every day. He sounds abusive BTW. His behaviour isn't about you, it's about him. Is he paying you maintenance?
Thanks for the reply. He does have his own place but to be honest it makes me really uneasy the thought of him taking her each time. He has a really short temper and at least when he sees DD in my house he presents himself as dad of the year (so that's good for DD at least). Also he is not very careful, he would drive off without tightening her car seat straps for example, puts car heating up to 29 degrees, feeds her food with lashings of salt. So I hope this doesn't sound too controlling but I need to keep DD near me because I don't feel she is safe otherwise.
If we formalise things it would scare me that they may insist she does overnights with him for example. Also she is still BF and has never been away from me.
Separate your home from the contact visits. Set up a definite day/time once or twice a week and stick to it. I am assuming based on your comments that he is not taking her out unsupervised, so I would either insist on contact in a public place (park, soft play, whatever suits you) or contact centre. This will most likely decrease the verbal abuse you are getting, as there will be other around you.
I had to do this with stbx, and it made a world of difference. He was abusive when we were together, and initially his contact visits were full of aggressive behaviour and verbal and physical abuse, so I had to stop him entering my home. He fought that for months, but now is finally realising that it's simply not going to happen.
Just remember that once you implement this, you MUST stick to it. I slid back once... only once... and it was right back to square one again. Never again.
He is having too much contact and it should not be in your home. If he is abusive and she is in danger it will need to be a contact centre. Have you any record of his behaviour, HV, GP or police?
She's far too young to stay with him overnight IMO, especially if you're BF. It's not as if he can do this
He shouldn't be seeing her at your place though. I can imagine how hard this is for you as he sounds very much like my ex. Ds is 15 and hasn't seen him since he was 11 (ds's choice after his father was verbally abusive to him). I've never felt happy about ds's father having contact time. He's hungover most of the time and I did worry about ds's safety but he was OK with ds (just very short tempered and would rip ds's clothes off if he'd been sick for example). The best way to distance yourself from him is to stop him from coming to your house. It's not practical for him to see her every day, what if you have plans? A formal arrangement would make a lot of sense (and they won't allow overnights until she's older. She's still a baby and needs you).
I agree I need to stop him coming to my house. Other than the fact he is abusive towards me in my own home, it's all too easy for him to pop in after work or whatever. OK so that's my first step - it will not be easy. He will fight and fight this and accuse me of being 'evil'.
Do you really think it would help to formalise things? I'm scared sick that he's going to want to take her abroad where his family live as soon as DD stops BF.
Yes he drinks a lot too (although would deny it). Oh god he is going to make my life even more hellish than he's already doing when I try enforcing some rules.
I don't have any record of his behaviour Twinklebells. It's strange because he somehow twists everything into being all my fault. I am the one with the hidden agenda, I am the one who doesn't care about DDs wellbeing etc etc. He hates me so much.
Sorry, my point was that if it came to reporting it I wouldn't know what to report. I know that probably doesn't make sense.
You need to tell him that it's not convenient. Make set times, and don't deviate. He will fight, stay strong and stick to the point. "it's not convenient for you to come then" over and over again. You're not evil, he's a twat. It will be tough, hence why I'm suggesting that you seek legal advice for back up. The best way to deal with a bully is to stand up to them. He thinks he can bully you into giving him what he wants and you can't go on like this. As for taking her abroad, the solicitor can put a stop to this until it's in your DD's best interests. At the moment she's with you all the time and it would be distressing for her to be parted from you so it's unlikely that this would happen.
For what it's worth, it does work. I started standing up to ds's father and it drove him nuts. He move abroad when ds was 3 and rarely saw ds afterwards. It's empowering to be honest and shows you're not a doormat.
Yes, he probably will initially. Document EVERYTHING. Keep all contact in a written format so you can copy it and save it - texts, emails. Don't ever allow yourself to drawn into arguments over it.
Outline what you're prepared to offer him for contact - ideally twice a week, so you have days away from him - and stick to it. Make it clear that contact will be at a prearranged place (either make arrangements with contact centre or designate specific public places) at a specific time. He is to meet you there. He is not to come to your house for any reason. If he comes to your house and harasses you, you contact the police. If he harasses you or threatens you in any way, contact police.
And be prepared for him to initially escalate things - basically you've caved under pressure from him for a long time, so that'll be the first thing he tries. He will then most likely ramp it up, use guilt, accuse you of taking his child away from you, and so on. Ignore. Detach. Don't get into a discussion over. Don't argue over it. Just repeat it as needed... this is the contact I'm prepared to offer.
If you don't put your foot down now and insist on guidelines, he will continue to verbally abuse you and feel that it is his right to intrude on your life.
It's called Gaslighting I think, Doesitgetbetter. It's convincing the other person that they are in the wrong to deflect the issue away from yourself. I do think that people like this have some sort of personality disorder, just a theory though.
"Ex basically hates me and thinks I am the worlds worst person. Nothing is ever his fault, ever - in his eyes he is perfect and I am shit. He accuses me of trying to keep him away from DD if I dare to ask him not to visit for one day"
He comes to your house EVERY DAY and then insults your intelligence by being abusive? Fuck that.
"Is there anything else I can do to put boundaries in place?"
Yes, tell him to fuck off and never darken your door again. He can request to see your child via email only and if you agree it will take place elsewhere, not in your home. A contact centre if necessary.
I would be considering not allowing any access at all unless a court says so. The visits are for the child's benefit, not the parent's. Let him prove he's a suitable parent to a court because he doesn't sound like one to me. He just sounds like an abusive prick. I wouldn't let him pat my dog without supervision.
'I'm scared sick that he's going to want to take her abroad where his family live...'
I'd be very concerned about that, op.
I think all this contact needs to be put on an official footing, with specified times and places, as suggested above, and not every blooming day at times when it suits him. Certainly not in your home. You're not together and your house is your domain, not his.
You'll have to make yourself stay strong if he kicks off when you make some rules. He's had it his own way for too long, but now you have to be very firm.
And your life will become far less 'hellish' once the rules are in place and enforced!
Oh, and regarding taking her abroad, does he have parental responsibility? Is he on the birth certificate?
OP can get a prohibited steps order for that, Alice
Only reason I ask is that it's going to be near to impossible for him to get a passport for her dd if he's not on birth certificate or has parental responsibility. Just looking at it from a practical side.
or has NOT got parental responsibility, that should say. grrrr typo
He isn't actuallt on the BC because he didn't turn up for the appointment. Oh, on another note - he doesn't pay maintenance either. He has bought her a huge amount of Xmas presents though, obviously to prove to everyone he is indeed father of the year.
I really appreciate the replies, I have a lot to think about. It has all gone on so long that he has ground me down so much and I constantly question if he is right and I am a bad person. I will find it hard to stay strong and resolute with putting the plans in place.
Legal back up would definitely help, is there anything else I can do even if it's little sayings to tell myself every time I feel myself caving?
True. Ds is 15 so even though his father's on his birth certificate he does't have PR. I think they changed this a year or so after he was born, so now the father gets it automatically. He'd still need her birth certificate to get a passport though but it's wise to get a prohibited steps order to say that her father can't take her out of the UK to be on the safe side.
Lady, I hope he will follow in the footsteps as your ex and move abroad one day and have minimal contact. What a relief that would be.
Oh, that's naughty! Your child needs clothes, food and a roof over her head as well as presents! You need to get in touch with the Child Maintenance people (used to be called the CSA). It's good that he's not on her birth certificate, irrelevant for maintenance though as he'll have to pay it anyway
I know how exhausting it is, but once you start building yourself back up and standing up for yourself it gets easier, I promise. You can do this, just keep repeating yourself and don't back down. You can do this!!
It will improve as you get headspace away from him. When you don't have him dragging you down verbally on a daily basis - when you get time without his voice in your head, you will get the time to think clearly and most likely appreciate the difference. It will help you feel stronger and motivate you to continue. Yes, it will be hard, but it is so worth it!
Stbx used to see the dcs twice a week, and he spent that whole time trying to get into my head while at my house. I noticed once I insisted on the visits in a public place, his visits have slowly decreased and he's seen them once for 2 hours (in town) since August and has no plans to see them again until after New Years. Amazing how their attention wanes when they can't have things their way.
It was a massive relief. I went back to Uni just before he left and started a Law degree which was also fab for my self confidence. He'd still find a way to try to control us though, like turning up at the drop of a hat and demand we drop everything for the hour he wanted to see ds. We had train tickets booked one for London day (so not cheap and not refundable) and he called the night before demanding to see ds and went nuts at me when I said we had plans that we couldn't change (as if I'm waiting in the house with ds on the off chance that he turns up! ). It's difficult, but you can do it. Just stay strong, stay calm and remember that this isn't about you, you're not in the wrong
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