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Just because I'm paranoid doesn't mean he's not out to get me!(21 Posts)
I need help, or a place to waffle, or serious psychiatric help, one of those at least.
STBexH lives up at his parents old house (they aren't living there at the moment) he's been there for 9 months now after I asked him to leave. Decree nisi should be coming next month BUT I don't think he understands this means I'm just not into him. Or he's messing with my head, I'm starting to fall on the messing with my head side of the fence.
He has a history of little lies to make himself look good or just rewriting the whole world in his head to make himself look good and me awful. I have had an earful from my lovely Mil (who I wish I could keep instead of him) because of total bollocks he has told her about me. So, this Christmas, our first apart, I asked him to stay Christmas Eve mainly for the sake of DS3 who really wanted him there (turfed him out again Christmas day when he looked like he was settling for the duration). But he is using this house like free childcare, if he has one of the boys (there are 3) over night he will have tea here, watch TV then leave with one at about 8pm, drop them back in at 10am the next day and then do exactly what he wants (OMG, typing that, I am a DOORMAT). Today he was here watching TV with DS3 (turned up before lunch with food, proceeded to make lunch in the kitchen then sit down and eat it). DS1 had the front door key (new lock because the other one broke) so I left the door on the latch and them inside saying 'I'm leaving this on the latch so I can get back in'. Came back from town, no body home, door locked, can't find DS1 with the key. I phoned H, he'd left, closed the door, some confusion here either 'I didn't take it off the latch I just closed it' or 'I didn't mean to make it lock' or 'I didn't hear you say that' BUT just in case before he left with DS3 he went upstairs and opened a window lock so he could get a ladder if I got locked out. So he came round and did the heroic borrowing a ladder from local business (filled with gossips) climbing up to the middle floor and in, opening the door. All on the main road so the world could see him.
Since he moved out he's done nothing to make our relationship work, I left it months before I got a solicitor because, stupidly, I hoped he would finally see the light and make an effort but no, he does things for people we both know, makes himself look good. He's lost weight and shows off to other people how lovely he looks, he tells his mum all the wonderful things he does for me (?) but nothing here, no conversation, no effort towards me just things other people can see. But he says he loves me, he doesn't want a divorce but has done nothing, absolutely FUCK ALL, to change things. BTW, nothing could now bridges are well and truly burnt but he won't go away. AAAAARRRGGGHHHHHHHH.
You care far too much what he says and does, you are still far too enmeshed, and yes you are being a bit of a doormat.
- Doorstep handovers only.
- Fixed times when he has the DC. Enforced.
- If MIL starts relaying one of his fictions, cut her short with "I don't want to year whatever it is ex has told you" and a swift change of topic. Such as the DC.
- STOP CARING about what he says and does. Cut off anyone who tries to give you news of him. Cut HIM off if he tries to discuss anything other than practical issues concerning the DC.
The best way to stop giving a shit is to stop having him in your home and to stop having him feature in any of your conversations.
You will feel SO much better.
Distance is so important. Yes, he will be in your life as you have DC. But he is not a part of your life now. He needn't spend time in the house. At all.
His time with DC is just that. He needs to prepare and manage for it in his space / time etc.
You are completely right, I do know that BUT much as I would love to never really speak to him again I am trying, for the sake of my boys, to do this as nicely as possible and still do family things. It's not their fault I can't put up with his bullshit and lack of respect anymore. He quit drinking which areas my main problem it just turned out when he left to deal with the drinking I realised exactly how unhappy he made me even when he was sober, that's the crux I suppose I feel guilty for breaking their family up.
But he was still totally weird for the ladder thing right?
So he planned to lock you out and to come to your rescue? What a knobhead.
Please stop him from walking all over you.
misskangaa he does totally need to manage for it in his space/time I just don't know how to make him see that. He's had all of the boys for maybe a total of two weeks in the last nine months, ten of those days because I went away (out of the country one time!) so that he would spend time with them BUT he does it by moving in here. It's too hard at his parents apparently. Although his mum brought up a lot of children there. Crap, I am being pathetic, I've held off posting here for ages because I knew seeing it in the light of day would make me realise I was being pathetic. Among my friends I am known for the handing out of grips as well, I hope they don't see this!
This feels like therapy now! My name is Losty and I am an absolute doormat and will let people treat me like shit to avoid conflict and make them like me.
I really think he did plan the whole thing Funky, he wanted people to see him rescue me and then they'll think how awful I am to kick out such an admirable man. We've been through some absolute shit in the last few years and instead of working together it's like he views it as a competition, he is sadder, it is worse for him, people feel more sorry for him. If I ask for a shred of help or compassion I am 'making it all about me'.
God I'm enjoying this, all I need is AnyFucker to comment and I have set it in stone and there is no going back and I am FREEEEEEEE.
It is not fair on your DS for you to be doing things "as a family". That is giving them (never mind you ex) the hope that you may get back together.
They can do nice things with Mum or Dad, but not both together. You need to explain this clearly, you might say you will try to be polite for special events like "18th Birthdays" or weddings. You can be polite without letting him in the house (even for the toilet), and certainly not doing joint things with him.
He should also be taking all 3 at once. Do you have them only 1 at a time?
No of course not, I have all three 3 or 4 nights a week and then either Ds3 or DS2 (normally DS3) goes and stays with him the other nights. DS1 is old enough that he wants to stay here (15) and I don't want to make him if he's not interested.
Am I really getting it wrong doing things as a family? I thought if I could show them that we can all get along once a week or so
no he isn't in the kitchen eating chips with them now, noooooo it would be better than brittle hand overs on the doorstep, surely that would be confusing? We live in a small place with not a lot of people, total avoidance is physically impossible. There aren't enough people to go round. There needs to be a middle way. Oh god, isn't that what Tony Blair said or something?
Well you're not paranoid or in need of psychiatric help. Perhaps he's not out to get you either, but he is a fucking arsehole who you are well rid of!
Minimum contact from now on.
Do exactly as GoatsDoRoam says. Your current method of managing contact is confusing to all involved. Are you sure you don't want him hanging around? Only asking because if I actually, really didn't want someone hanging around, they would not be in my home under any circumstances.
If he lives nearby, it should be no problem for him to get the boys to his place for contact. Definitely better to organise contact into a regular pattern of time and place (his place!). Flexibility's good but chaos? Not so much!
I really feel, and have read it many a time, that continuing to do things "as a family" once you have split up, is a really bad idea. Even more so when one part of the couple is a lazy bellend fantasist like your ex. He's totally taking advantage, using you like a hotel and a childcare facility. You know you do have a choice in this don't you? The boundaries are blurred to the point of non-existent. It gives the children false hope, and also they're kind of in a no-man's land : mum and dad have split but dad's still here..... And how do you move on with him popping in all the bloody time? It would drive me insane. I'm sure he'll kick off but seriously, new year, new boundaries, new rules.
Doing things 'as a family' only works when the NRP is not an abusive cock like yours is. My DS' dad and I are not a couple (we were drinking pals and occasional FWB when DS was accidentally concieved) but we co-parent amicably. Your selfish, manipulative XP needs pushing to the sidelines of your life and treated with mildly amused politeness when you have to deal with him at all. Best of luck.
Got a child glued to me, back after 9, thank you for all your input, it's incredibly helpful, I really don't know what to do for the best so your opinions are great.
I think he needs to take all three at once, giving you a break for a start and not at your house. Set arrangements in stone, no key, and not over the threshold. As if you are not in an actual relationship.
I agree with the comments about 'doing things as a family' not a good idea.
All it does is confuse your DC and give mixed messages. And gives him license to treat your house like a hotel and you like a doormat at the entrance to it.
My advice is.. Kick him into touch, give him absolutely no shadow of a doubt that his role in your life is a co-parent to your DCs and that's it. Simple as. And that reconciliation is off the cards, but childcare cooperation is very important for the sake of your DCs.
You sound too nice to be treated this way
dirtybadger thank you. I think I may write fucking arsehole who you are well rid of! on the inside of my iphone case to re read when I need reminding. I'm one of lifes people pleasers, I like to make people happy and do things for them
doormat and H has used this to his full advantage for 20 years, it's exhilarating and liberating to be thinking about exactly what I want but takes a bit of practice. I can't bear to make someone unhappy but I hit rock bottom and it was either him or me so I chose me! So, right, I have been starting a nice line in amused politeness but now it is MN sanctioned I will work it in more. Also, if it is better for the children to have a routine then I am ALL about what is best for the children.
Yes wallaby, it is driving me completely insane, not as much as living with him was but his time is up now. I think I knew the answer when I posted but now I know it's here for all eternity in my (almost) normal posting name then I can stiffen my back and do it. I am so excited for the future, however grim divorcing is, and it is very, very grim, the end product will be worth it completely. I feel all light and floaty and free when I think about it.
One last question then, given that this is a small area, very little childcare to be had and I don't work currently (well not outside school hours when I do) still picking up DS3 is acceptable even if it's his dad's day for care isn't it? He isn't in a job where he can change his hours to collect him
although I will be stamping on the bit where he goes to the gym or for a bike ride before he collects them, what am I again... You know what, all his actions for decades have said, "I am important and and frankly you are not", what a twat, I'm bloody lovely you know, he's an idiot.
Sorry, if I could steal another piece of your brains for a moment?
My fabulous three boys are sporty and therefore do a lot of activities in the evening, on the nights when they are all 'my' boys I sometimes end up in a complex go around of favours and driving and bribing eldest son to babysit which works well. If H has them all for his nights I know that he won't bother in the same way for DS1 to do his thing, he will just say 'he can't go then' and it will be end of subject. DS1 is great at what he does but importantly it gets him out of the house and into the company of older teens who do lots of sport and are kind and lovely and not computer screens. Do I just leave it and he misses out. If there are any intact bits of my heart left it would chip a piece off if he didn't go. And face it, it's not the lovely boy's fault his father is a dick.
Also remembered that lovely Mil has said to me a couple of times, 'well it's his house, you can't stop him being there, if he wanted to come back there's nothing you can do about it.' Which she has no doubt said to him many times so I think all the waltzing in and making food is him pissing all over his territory, because if he actually tried to move back in I would make his life hell and he knows it. The point being though that if he wanted to, or if his parents needed their house back, he could move back in couldn't he? Not a lot I can do about it at all. This fact means I am racing to get the divorce finalised because it makes my heart feel cold to think that he might.
That sort of behaviour is why kids often decide not to visit their non-resident parent as they get older. You either leave him to do it his way or you offer to take your son and he stays with you that night. It means you don't get the break but he gets the activity.
I'd get that divorce sorted asap - but if he no longer lives there he can't just waltz in as and when. Get divorced, the house sold and a new life up and running.
My name is Purple and I am an absolute doormat and will let people treat me like shit to avoid conflict and make them like me Been there, got the t-shirt, you are not alone.
One ingredient in this mentality is seeing everything from the other person's POV - as in 'well it is his house too, legally, even though he has left voluntarily etc, so really I should just let him back in if he wants to come back...' rather than thinking 'this is MY house now, he has left, we are getting divorced, and he can just f&*k off'.
Stick to the days you agree - if XH can't be arsed to take DS to activities then that's his/their choice: ds can put pressure on his dad to make it happen, or not.
<embraces purple> I like to think though that I am happy being more like me than the more selfish, or non doormat, type. I would make myself so unhappy if I felt I'd been unfair to someone that I can't do it. You know what, it's probably time to get back to my lovely counselling woman, she gave me the backbone and ability to use the word 'no' which I have to say I've really enjoyed using. The look of surprise on some people's faces was a joy in itself .
Sad as it is though, I'm using this to make my mind up! Sort of 'oh well random internet sprites say it's fine to have DS1 home that night so I can'. Still working on having a backbone then! To be fair to him I don't really need a break from him (his squabbling, loud, needy small brothers, I really REALLY do need a break from, lovely as they are they take a lot of attention). DS1 is mature and kind and very handy for getting things down from high shelves.
I cannot wait to be divorced, which makes me feel sad but I think I am allowed to look forward to it and be unhappy about it at the same time. I've spent a large portion of my life being treated without kindness, with no thanks for things that I do, taken for granted by the person who should love me the most. Upthread someone put it to me that I want his attention still, I don't, I really don't, but I do care a lot about doing this kindly, not because he deserves my kindness but because that is the sort of person I want to be. Saying that, he can fuck the fuck off now with his lying on the sofa. New rules on the way!
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