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Has anyone tried again successfully with a previously EA relationship?

(34 Posts)
lovelilies Sat 23-Apr-16 20:30:05

Split up with DP in November after final 'nail in the coffin' argument/ holiday from hell.

He's been EA in the past, drinking too much and being verbally abusive, to me and my DD (now 10) from a prev relationship.

He's seeing a counsellor for his anger issues, ditched his poisonous parents and brother, and is doing a lot to help me out with new house, great dad to our DS, making real effort with DD.

I'm very confused. When I bought my new house without him, I was fully prepared to be alone, and was quite happy with that. I like being financially independent, and having my 'own' space.

But when I'm with him, when he's helping out with sorting garden, at hand over time for DS etc I feel like we could still be the happy family I once hoped for us. The whole relationship wasn't hell by any means, we had (have) a lot of laughs and genuinely love each other (I feel).

He wants us back together.
DD enjoys spending time with him, their relationship is better than ever. He's read a lot of parenting stuff and is finally seeing where I'm coming from with my parenting style...

What I'm asking is, is there any chance we could have a happy relationship/ family?
Has anyone achieved this?

Sorry for the ramble.. I just need some perspective

lovelilies Sun 24-Apr-16 07:48:07

Ummm, anyone?

Lweji Sun 24-Apr-16 07:53:51

My best guess is that no one has.

My own experience is that they are capable of times when it seems better and that they revert to type as soon as they can. And often to worst, as the women then feel silly for taking them back.

If you consider the possibility of getting back, then make sure he has proven to you that he has changed and for a long period of time.
Make sure he doesn't revert for any reason. And particularly after whatever triggered his previous abuse.

Or just be happy that everyone is happy with you apart and that you are better parents separated than together.

NewStartNow Sun 24-Apr-16 07:55:29

I haven't personally but in my opinion I don't think it's a good idea.
This might just be his nice phase to hoover you back in. Having read ( and experienced) plenty of this, it's very common and they soon revert to type.

QuiteLikely5 Sun 24-Apr-16 07:59:38

What was he doing to be EA?

MorrisZapp Sun 24-Apr-16 08:00:44

If he's truly changed and you like having him around, then you can still have him in your life without handing your power over. As soon as he moves back in, your power is gone and he has nothing to strive for. Having raised the stakes by ending it once, you'll be more inclined to 'make it work' if he reverts to type.

Please be very careful about giving your independence up.

prettywhiteguitar Sun 24-Apr-16 08:07:07

There was a period where my ex and I were getting on really well, he has never changed though.

I would give it plenty of time as it is, it's the only way you know. If he loves you deeply he won't be going anywhere.

Lweji Sun 24-Apr-16 08:11:17

Btw, by a long time I mean at least a couple of years.
Not a few months.

I'm sure he had many opportunities to change during the relationship. Why didn't he?

I'd also try and distance myself from him. You are more likely go get back and he is still very much in your life and you end up taking him back with full on rose tinted glasses.

Chirstmascake1 Sun 24-Apr-16 08:15:46

Read Lundy Bancroft, it is very difficult for these men to change. It's not so much about the abuse but their entitled views. It takes years for someone to change with professional support (in his experience) and obviously they have to want to. Life is too short IMO.

Triliteral Sun 24-Apr-16 08:20:47

I'm with Morris on this. Even if he's genuine, wants to change and makes a huge effort, the tendencies will still be there, ready to re-emerge when he is stressed. Equally, you will have to be constantly the one to watch out for tendencies and set boundaries because on some level, he won't really be aware of what 'normal' is.

There's also a risk that during the teenage years, when your children become less easy, he will again be unaware of boundaries and how to deal with them. If he is fully in your life, your children will not have a safe place to go where they can get away.

Lastly, you teach your children it's a good idea to persevere with a relationship that's deeply flawed in the hope that it can be fixed. Later, you may have to watch as your children persist in completely inappropriate relationships and deal with the realisation that you taught them that, even as their mental health is felling apart.

Have him in your life. Don't have him in your house or ever put yourself in a situation where you or your children are dependent upon him and his goodwill and sobriety.

HandyWoman Sun 24-Apr-16 08:31:27

After being given an ultimatum by me my EA ex improved his behaviour for THREE YEARS before the mask slipped again and he reverted to type. The place where the EA comes from is very deep within a person. It's the real them. I would not get back together at this stage. It's very possible that this is 'hoovering' you back in. Men gain a lot from being in a relationship -things like social status that is important to them. Some will work hard and be on their best behaviour for years to get that.

Retain your power and independence. Time (years) will tell if he's doing it because he wants to, or doing it to get something...

DoreenLethal Sun 24-Apr-16 08:50:56

I suspect the mask will slip when you tell him that all this good behaviour is nice, but because you know leopards don't change their spots, you cannot be in a relationship with him again. Either 5 seconds after, or once he decides that being nice really isn't worth it.

Lweji Sun 24-Apr-16 08:52:27

Agreeing with Doreen

EarthboundMisfit Sun 24-Apr-16 09:00:55

I think you would be wise to keep him at a distance for a long, long time if only for your DD's sake.

Kr1stina Sun 24-Apr-16 09:02:21

Yeah, tell him that you want to wait for a year or two before getting involved with him again . If he's really changed, he will completely understand and be supportive of your decisions and your right to make it for yourself .

If he's not changed , he will say

" Fuck that , you want me to wait two years for you ? I've done what you wanted - gone NC with my family and gone for therapy . so you owe me. All I want is X Y and X . But you won't do what I want. You're a controlling bitch "

Standalittletaller Sun 24-Apr-16 09:07:37

I did try again and it was a disaster.

He left and came back a year later declaring he was a changed man. I tentatively said we could gradually try again, family days out etc to see how it went.

Boy did he put on a good act. It was so over the top he could not keep it up eg presents, extra helpfulness, nights out, actually playing with the kids, everything he had been incapable of before.

A few months later I realised I just didn't feel the same and ended it. He has been so vindictive since and we had a very nasty divorce. He has gone all out on a sustained campaign of harassment to ruin me for the last three years.

Do not trust him.

HandyWoman Sun 24-Apr-16 09:08:33

Last November is literally a nanosecond ago in terms of modifying deep seated entitlement.

There's no way to know at this point if all this stuff (NC with toxic family, counselling, reading books, being nice) is just window dressing.

Janie143 Sun 24-Apr-16 09:36:16

All of the above is true Mine went on a perpetrators program. We have been apart for 2.5 years He thought that entitled him to come back and showed very clearly that it had made no difference when I said no

rememberthetime Sun 24-Apr-16 09:43:56

Lundy Bancroft recommend s two years of him in therapy and showing no signs of bad behaviour before you take him back. Do you think he is capable of that? A few months is not long enough.

lovelilies Sun 24-Apr-16 18:47:04

Thank you for all the replies. It's what I needed to hear. I shall definitely keep my independence, and not have him move in here.
I'm seeing a counsellor soon, to try and address my own feelings.
He does think that because he's 'changed' and desperately wants his family back, that I should fall in line and get back with him.

Lweji Sun 24-Apr-16 19:20:11

Be careful, though, because that could be the calm before the storm. He won't like it when you tell him it's over. But you should, or you'll have him pressuring you regularly and you won't be able to move on if he's around constantly.

lovelilies Sun 24-Apr-16 20:25:03

It's so bloody difficult to not believe all he says/ does.
He's doing everything right; looking after our son very well, putting up shelves/ buying me a kitchen/ sorting out the garden etc.
With a constant narrative about how much he loves me and the kids, how we can have such a lovely life together.
Not meaning to drip feed, I'm 32 weeks pregnant with our 2nd DC. We split up when I was 7 weeks.
He's bought birthing pool (planning home birth) and been to hypno birthing sessions too. It doesn't help that everyone says what a lovely couple we are/were and that we have such a 'connection' sad
I have said to him I'm not making any decisions about 'us' until this baby's at least 6 months old, because I'm tired and hormonal and unable to think straight.

Lweji Sun 24-Apr-16 20:51:30

It just shows he is capable of doing it. He simply chose not to before. Why?

lovelilies Sun 24-Apr-16 21:00:05

His excuses?
Here are some texts from last night

"I was simply clueless I think.. Just didn't get how family things worked.. As I've grown up, and started to look after DS more and more understand my role in all of this .. I've now realise my faults and understood the stupid influences others have had in shaping things for me .. Your mum was right about 1 thing. It's to do with breaking the mould ... I've finally broken it!
It'll never happen again .. None of it will.. There was so much stupidity on my part and I struggled to understand it all ... I love you so much .. You guys are my world.
This is a kinda conversation I had with my counsellor .. I cried and cried when the penny dropped. It was a massive realisation ...
I love you all .. I'd never ever go back to the person I once was .. I'm ashamed of what I was"

If it's all bollocks, he's good! hmmconfused

Lweji Sun 24-Apr-16 21:07:15

This is a kinda conversation I had with my counsellor

Yes, it sounds like counsellor speak.

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