Mumsnet has not checked the qualifications of anyone posting here. If you need help urgently, please see our domestic violence webguide and/or relationships webguide, which can point you to expert advice and support.
Is this abuse?(26 Posts)
I've name changed although I'm not a usual poster I've posted a lot in the pregnancy boards. I don't know where to begin or how to explain. Me and Dp have been together for nearly 2 years now. Our relationship has developed really fast. I met him at 18 (now 20) in my first year at university and he was 27 (now 29) in his final year. Near the end of my first year I became pregnant and we moved in together and had a baby in january. I'm now in my third year at uni and he's working full time and we're recently engaged. I've thought about posting on here for awhile now but thought maybe I was being slightly over dramatic to think I was being abused. I guess I have a very warped view of relationships. No father in my life and my mum is an abusive drug addict. My sister in a very obviously abusive relationship too. When I write my life down on paper it sounds a lot worse than it is. I'm a very happy confident woman and have no obvious issues caused by my upbringing except for my relationships with men. I'm stereotypical in the sense I'm always attracted to older men for example.
But to not to make this post pages and pages long I'll just describe his behaviour and our relationship. He has a very bad temper. Even from when we were first together he would often shout at me over silly things. When I was pregnant and first at home with my newborn baby he would come home from work in massive rages and shout at me if the house was a mess and call me stupid and lazy and tell me all i do is sit on my arse all day. Of course when I'd start crying after saying I was putting on the water works he'd calm down and come apologising and tell me how much he loves me. The shouting I could deal with but the most recent event that sticks with me is when he was cooking sunday dinner a couple weeks ago and I went to the shop with his sister for a few vegetables he needed. I forgot the oxo cubes and he went mental shouting. I shut the kitchen door on him to not hear the shouting and he threw the knife at the door. Everytime I see the whole in the kitchen door I'm reminded of it. He's never hit me or grabbed me but when he's angry its like he's another person he'll call me names like stupid bitch and shout at me around our baby. If I say I'm leaving and want to stay at a friends he won't let me take our baby so I can't go. He's always so apologetic and lovely. Even typing this I feel I've made him sound worse than he is. Even with all this he is not a horrible man or person I just truly believe he needs help or counselling or anger management.
Sorry for this being so long I just need help as to what to do. His temper is wearing me down lately. I told him last night in bed I struggle to live with him and he got upset. He says he's trying to change and he knows his behaviours not acceptable but the changes are very small. Can an angry person just ever stop being angry? The thing is he was in a relationship for 8 years before me and from what I've heard from friends and family she was the controlling one. I've laid in bed all morning crying. Any advice would be helpful
So I confronted him on his behaviour by emailing him at work to explain how I feel. He called me on his lunch saying he will get counselling and told me how low he feels about himself and his life and that he's not happy and he accepts he needs help. I said if you're feeling that low maybe we should take you to the doctors. I felt we were getting somewhere until I asked for the number for his doctors as it's different to mine or what it's called he kept saying he doesn't know then started getting mad saying he asked me to call the doctors for him months ago and that I'm too stupid and lazy to do anything. I started crying and he started shouting down the phone saying do me a favour and pack his bags for him so he can leave then hung up. Then as I was typing this called me again in a calm voice saying he's sorry and we'll spend 20 minutes after putting the baby to bed tonight finding all the numbers and was asking me if I'm ok. I can't live like this. I feel alone and with no one to help me and no one I can talk to that will understand
Thank god my baby is in nursery today or I don't know what I'd do. I feel like just going to the shop for alcohol or cigarettes or food or anything that will make me feel better. I am an idiot for letting myself be treated like this
You're not an idiot, this kind of abuse starts gradually so that you don't notice until you're deep in it. And yes, it is abuse. (My rule is , if you wouldn't say it to a colleague, you shouldn't say it to a loved one).
It is better if he leaves.
When I was pregnant and first at home with my newborn baby he would come home from work in massive rages and shout at me if the house was a mess and call me stupid and lazy
This is not how a reasonable person behaves toward a pregnant person. This is emotional abuse and it is not good.
I'm not one for a knee jerk LTB response, in this instance i would suggest he leave and stay else where until he can resolve any issues he has. If and when you feel he is ready, then you reintroduce slowly. Any sign of this aggression reappearing though and you have to start over.
That is if you love him and want it to work? If not then LTB.
I would pack his bags since he wanted to leave.
You should be apart until things are properly decided.
He needs to sort himself out for your sake and baby's.
He sounds very much Jekyll and Hyde and those people are dangerous.
You are so bright to catch this only 2 years in! I was in a very similar relationship that I started at 18 yo as well, and it took me 12 years to figure out what was going on and leave. You are doing very well.
YY to what everyone else is saying: he is a damaged person who is abusing you, and you need to protect yourself and your child by leaving. Both of you deserve to live in an environment free from the rantings of an unstable and angry man who won't take responsibility for himself.
I want to address this point:
Even with all this he is not a horrible man or person I just truly believe he needs help or counselling or anger management.
Yes, this is probably very true. However, only he can choose whether he wants to change, and then seek the help he needs. You are in no position to do it on his behalf. He is certainly damaged and needs help, but this is his own journey to go on.
He can pack his own bags, find his own doctor, make his own phone calls... this is not your responsibility, any more than his violence and name-calling are your fault, although I'm sure he tries to shift responsibility for these on you, too. Nobody but him can pick up a knife and throw it at the door, you did not make him do it. Nobody but him can take himself off to a GP appointment; he is an adult in charge of his own self.
You are in charge of YOURself (and DC). Decide whether this is the environment you want to live in, and then act in consequence. Take action to help yourself - it's all you can do.
Do you and your partner own your house or rent it ? If your name on the lease ?
Do you have any close friends who you can confide in? Do you have a college counselling service ? What about your college tutor ?
Please call women's aid and talk to them . Their lines are very busy so you often need to try several time . Don't worry that your abuse isn't bad enough, or that perhaps it's not really abuse . The people at women's aid will talk that through with you
Yes what he's doing is emotionally abusive without a doubt, but it sounds to me like he's angry and frustrated at his life and he's not very good at dealing with his feelings. It seems you got PG really quickly after meeting him and I think he feels resentful and trapped in something that might have otherwise fizzled out naturally if it were not for the baby.
Plus you barely had a chance to get to know the real him, warts and all before you had a child with him, and now he's showing his true colours.
You can take him to the doctor's and make him get counselling if you like, it might help temporarily but I don't think this relationship is going to last much longer. Do yourself a favour and end it sooner rather than later.
I'm so sorry to hear this. As I think you know, this IS abusive behaviour and ultimately he is the only one who can choose to change it. Sadly abusers are often manipulative, apologising and promising to change. I would urge you to contact Victim Support and Women's Aid as a first step - talk to someone and find out what you can do, what steps to take etc. and practical things for protecting yourself and your baby. If you look on the website remember to use the button to 'hide your visit' so he can't see it in the internet history. Good luck and be strong, you will be doing the right thing for you and your baby.
He is very jekyll and Hyde. He is the most lovely caring man then he just switches and sees red over small things and behaves the way he does. I've not spoken to woman's aid or anyone I guess I'm just scared to take the step forward and admit these things to a professional. Thank you for all of your very helpful replies it's much appreciated. I do love him dearly and do want to make this work. He's come home tonight saying we would talk and if he felt himself getting angry he would leave. He's able to do this because he's done this before but it never lasts long.
We rent our house and my names on the lease but he pays our rent and bills. I'm a student so only get my finance every semester and pay him some money towards rent and bills through that. My loan money has been spent now. I have a part time job but I only work 8 hours. I'm scared to lose my life I have built but I feel I could be strong enough to leave if this continues (which I know it's highly likely it will). My university offers a free counselling service. I think I may be slightly co dependant so I think I will make an appointment with them tomorrow and speak to woman's aid.
ricecrispie your words have stuck with me today thank you. I am in charge of me and dc and I need to decide what type of environment is acceptable before the cycle of warped relationships continues on to my child.
I hope he doesn't feel resentful towards his life because of my pregnancy. He always said me and dc are the only good and light in his life. But sweet words mean nothing I suppose
Be strong, OP.
You're being very brave taking those first steps.
Is there anyone you can speak to in real life, like a friend?
Oh op bless you.
His family are going to have all said his ex was the controlling one. Its just something abusive partners say. They have to have a story, they aren't going to admit they were the problem. The most dangerous thing you can be doing right now is calling him out on it, emailing him, talking to him about it will only make it worse. All her will do is use it to better persuade you to stay by knowing exactly what to say. You are telling him what to say sorry for, he can't see it and he doesn't mean it.
He might not have hit you yet but this could get so much worse, and although he wont let you take your baby if you tell him you're leaving him, if you stay with this man you cannot garuntee the safety of your baby or yourself.
I know when you're in it all you can see is the "but everyone thinks he's such a lovely person" "he's always so sorry afterwards" "he just needs help" but you can't do that honey and you are putting yourself in danger that you cannot control.
Get in touch with your local childrens centre and ask to do the freedom programme, don't tell him! They will give you support and counselling and talk about the safest way for you to leave if you decide that is what you need to do. What you are describing is exactly how it starts and i know you feel cruel writing it but wouldn't you rather you realised this before one of you got seriously hurt or worse than afterwards? 2 women a week are killed by their partners and your instincts are telling you to run or you wouldn't have written this post, so gather as much support as you can but please don't keep trying to confront him about it as that will only enflame him and put you at more risk.
You are worth so much more than that, at the end of the day if you left him and he wanted to get help I'm sure nothing would stop him but they all read from the same script and do the "oh ill get help ill do anything", because he will do anything to keep you, but not because he wants to love you, its because he doesn't want you to go because then he wouldn't have anybody there to control or abuse and you just don't deserve that.
Yes he is abusive. You need to get yourself and your baby away from him. To help you prepare mentally and practically to do so, you could:
Call Women's Aid
Read Lundy Bancroft's book
Get real life support from family and/or friends
Once you have escaped, please do the Freedom Programme. It will help you spot the warning signs and avoid abusive relationships in future.
You are young and have the rest of your life ahead of you, but don't waste any more it being abused.
You cannot subject your child to this! Surely you realize that even an infant is very adversely affected by the strife, violence and stress in its environment?
He is very abusive and it's only going to escalate. Get out at any cost. You must escape.
He may be able to change, if he wants to and works at it. But I think I'd be inclined to ask him to leave until he has changed. Actions speak so much louder than words.
He is abusive. I really feel for you with his mood swings. It must be confusing for you. I'm thinking when your baby is older it will be confusing for them also. Congratulate yourself on recognising this early on in your relationship. Some women take 20 or more years or never. If he really wants to change and get help that is fantastic. But even if he does get help it could take years for him to change. Get some counselling do you can work out what YOU want to do. There is always help available even if you have nothing.
Wow thank you for all of your replies. I will admit I was leaning back into believing that he could change after him coming home yesterday. It's hard when you've imagined a life and a future with someone and it's all taken away. I will be taking steps from now to get out of this life. I don't deserve this and my baby doesn't deserve to grow up in a house like this. You are all wonderful women. Thanks again
I don't deserve this and my baby doesn't deserve to grow up in a house like this
This is Key.
Neither of you deserve this.
You are strong and can get through this, call Woman's aid for some advice and put yourself first.
That is severe abuse. I'd have left at the knife
Join the discussion
Please login first.