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Separation, living with parents but can't cope anymore(30 Posts)
As per thread title, I separated from exP a few months ago, have a DS (almost 4) and have ended up living with my parents. I didn't feel I could cope on my own and wanted a breathing space, to get some much needed counselling and sort myself out financially.
Unfortunately the situation with my family is complicated, my sister has also been living at home due to complex mental health issues and can't stand me being here, she appears to hate me actually and I feel utterly worn down by it.
Last night I reached my breaking point, she was outside my bedroom door (shared with DS who was not asleep) shouting at me that I am a bitch and a cunt and lots more. The other day she shouted and screamed at me also in front of DS.
My parents don't want to know, their hands are tied I guess as they can't exactly throw her out, she is a mess and needs them. But I feel so down and depressed, I find her abusive and even when there's no big 'drama' going on her default with me is hostility.
My parents (well my dad really) has been very abusive in the past, he's a lot better these days but not the easiest person to live with. I'm still trying to deal with the effects of all that though and I'm just struggling in general so much.
Told them about the incident last night and my dad was shouting and screaming, repeatedly called me a coward (don't know why, it's a standard line of his though), ungrateful and a shit bag.
I said I would move out and he shouted in my face to leave that night (with my son), I said I wouldn't but would leave in the morning (today).
My sister disappeared into her room with a knife saying she was going to kill herself, this was removed.
My dad said HE was going to kill himself and drove off, he'd been drinking, we called the police.
Basically I don't have a clue what's next. The last few years have been tough and I'm trying to figure out how to live in this world, I have anxiety and depression and I'm close to my parents while also feeling a lot of latent anger at past behaviour of which last night would have been a mild example.
Can't stand the fact that my DS is being affected by all this instability, he rarely if ever sees the 'dark' side of things but God knows what he heard or thought last night. Don't know if I'm strong enough to cope with whatever comes next, don't know if there's anything left to salvage in this family and I feel like the shittest person in the universe.
On a practical level I don't know what to do today, tomorrow. I'm just lost. Please help me see clearly and tell me what to do!
If your sister is being abusive I would say if you are unable to house yourself elsewhere that the council have a duty to find yourself and your son somewhere safe to live. Have you contacted them? Have you checked you are getting all the financial help you are entitled to on the "entitled to" website?
I don't think you can stay at home anymore for the sake of your son, I would start by trying to do everything I could to get out of there.
Thanks. It's just really hard to see the whole relationship break down and think of all the ramifications of that. But equally how can I stay and act like it's all ok? My sister is the 'problem' mainly these days but the abusive behaviour in the past from my dad was awful. I don't think he's a bad person though. And I feel I should let it go but I can't. Especially when things like last night happen.
So sorry for you. My family are a bit toxic like this - parents fairly abusive when I was young, although we still see each other now, and like you, I feel I should 'get over it' but sometimes, well.....
Anyway - I don't think you should stay there with your son. Not good for you, even though I'm sure you've built up the strength to take it by now, but definitely not good for your son.
I don't know who is best for you to contact, but perhaps try with Women's Aid - 0808 2000 247. At least if they can't help, they'll hopefully know who can.
Your sister, while I understand that she is mentally ill, is being abusive. You should not have to put up with living under those conditions with a four year old. Explain the abusiveness to Women's Aid, and the general suicide threats, and the knife etc etc.
Please do it - I know the temptation is not to because you're just so exhausted and because you have learnt to live with it, but please do it for your son.
That's it exactly, I have learned to live with it and I love them. And it distresses me so much when these situations happen, I always blame myself and feel like an awful person but then logically I know that's because I've been conditioned to feel like that. Then when things blow over it's such a relief that I just move on straight away because I just want things to be ok.
I honestly don't think my DS has been affected so far. He's woken up as happy and cheeky as ever, we've had a big cuddle and he's been climbing all over me, I know you can't know how a child perceives things but he always seems happy, confident etc. I think I've done a pretty good job of keeping him away from the crap but I'm still so furious about last night, I can handle being called a cunt it's just business as usual really but the thought that he might have heard makes me feel such a failure as a parent. I left him awake after being given antibiotics and that's when it kicked off, I looked in on him afterwards and he seemed to be asleep so maybe he wasn't aware?
For his sake I have to not live here, that's as a minimum I think.
It's lovely when it's good iyswim but I can't risk these incidents making him feel unsafe
My consolation is that it's never directed at him and he has me as his 'buffer', and he actually has a really good relationship with my parents so I don't want to ruin that.
The other day though my dad was stressed and I heard him say to my DS who was playing up "you are very rude and I don't like rude people", I felt that was really wrong but it was such a one off and I just couldn't face causing an explosion because of one comment. It's not like my dad would have 'taken it well' if I'd said something.
I wonder if the police coming round last night means they might alert social services? They looked round the house to see if my dad was here somewhere and saw my DS in bed.
Would be a relief if they did in a way, I wish I had more support but I'm scared of ending up in trouble somehow? Or living somewhere grotty up to my eyeballs in debt which is the likely outcome
No, I know what you mean when you say your Dad would not have 'taken it well' if you'd said something. I'm sure you do exactly what I do, which is to monitor constantly to make sure that nothing happens which could set your Dad off down the 'not taking it well' path. Very tiring, but then again, if, like me, you're used to it, and it's all ok while it's ok, then I see why you're staying.
Get down the council offices tomorrow and see what can be done. Explain about your sister, and also explain about the police visit - at the very least that should put you higher up the 'list' for housing. You won't end up in trouble, and you won't end up anywhere grotty and in debt. Might be a little more grotty than you're used to, but you certainly wouldn't be in debt. And truth is, I have a friend who has just moved into a newly built four bed housing association house, her, and her two sons. She's paying the extra for the fourth bedroom but that suits because when her partner's children come to stay, they have a bedroom too. The house is fantastic. Far more fantastic than our tiny little two bed terrace which we are still trying to pay the mortgage on! Council housing/housing association houses/affordable homes are not always grotty. And at least it would be your own, and away from your family so that you could dip in and out by visiting them and not actually having to live with them.
Go to the council tomorrow - I really think you have a lot of good reasons why they should put you high up on the list for housing.
Thank you so much for your replies goshnotme. I can't go to the council as I'll be working but I could try calling them on my break. It's just that I know there's not much social housing available round here and I'm scared of ending up in some b&b miles away. If the worst comes to the worst I could do that for a while and my DS could live with his dad full time for now and me visit him, we have a very amicable arrangement and his dad does close to 50/50 with me. It's not what I'd want but I can't bear the idea of my DS living like that, I just don't want any more disruption for him.
I'm really nervous about ringing the council, don't know what to say and I'm feeling so unsure about what's for the best. Sorry but if anyone reads this I need a bit of a boost, I feel so anxious and conflicted.
If your partner treated you the way your father or sister did, I think the advice on here would be LTB. It's no different. Their behaviour would be truly frightening for a child, but you've grown up with it and become desensitised.
Go to the council. See what they can offer you. Anything has to be better than where you are. As long as wherever it is still allows you to get to work it will be fine.
And it will by yours.
It might be worth having a talk with Women's Aid. Abusive situations and environments aren't always marital; the abuse you and ds went through the other night was unbearable. Your father sounds horrendous and the whole thing will rob you of whatever sanity you're clinging on to. You're a strong woman, honey, to have come through all this, re-entered family hell and be willing to consider ds living with exp. I'm in awe of you. So, positive head on and phone the council, WA and anyone else you're close to in RL for thoughts and advice. Getting out of your parents' place is pretty urgent
This is the shitty part before it all gets way better for you, btw - hold onto that thought!
I think I would leave asap, you can repair your relationship with your parents from afar. It sounds so difficult I think life would be easier under your own steam.
Sending you strength for your visit to the council tomorrow
I didn't manage to call and I'm feeling more and more overwhelmed
OK - is there someone who can make the calls for you? I understand that you are overwhelmed because everything is for you to do, and you just need someone else to lean on, if only for half a minute. A friend? Just someone to get the ball rolling for you?
Can we do anything here? Can we get phone numbers and post them here? Can we do any research for you?
Please please please phone womans aid. They will help you. I live in an area with very little social housing but a friend of a friend of mine got a temporary house cos she was living with her ex and had 2 dogs she wasn't in need and you are totally in need. Get someone to go with you to speak to the council. Even take a day off work. You need, badly, to get somewhere away from this abuse.
My son has been in hospital for the last two days after having a chest infection that caused a severe asthmatic reaction, very scary. We're now back at home so I have taken the opportunity to call the council and try to register for housing but i've been told I don't have a local connection.
The county I live in is divided into four different district councils, in the last four years I have either lived or worked in all four of them but none for the required past two years. I haven't moved of my own wishes, the first time was because we were evicted due to the roof being leaky and the landlord refusing to do anything about it so they told us to leave. After that we stayed with my parents for a while which was no picnic, then my mum was diagnosed with cancer (she is ok now and finished treatment) but due to her low immunity we were asked to leave and moved to a cheaper area. Separated from my partner who said he wasn't prepared to move out of our flat, I didn't really know what to do so came back here to keep the peace, as I hoped, and regroup.
So thanks to all that I am not eligible for any housing help, looks like I'm going to have to suck it up and get on with it. I had a feeling something like this would happen.
Are you working? Could you rent privately? Would the council help fund the deposit?
Honestly I think you turn up and take a B&B place, anything is better than your parents!
Your local area may do rent deposit assistance so you can rent a small flat privately.
I am working full time. Might be possible to rent privately if I get a deposit from somewhere and assuming I'm able to get some housing benefit. Somewhere I can live for another year until the landlord decided to sell or something else happens to fuck it up I guess.
I never wanted this kind of life for my child and honestly regret ever having him since the only childhood I appear to be able to provide is one of chaos and volatility.
How do i turn up? Where do I turn up?
It's not true that anywhere is better than my parents, the fact is it's a very uncertain situation and you don't know what it will be like at all.
Contact Womens Aid and Shelter.
See if they can help in any way.
They will certainly know some local services that can help you with this.
Got to be worth a try!?
Your Ex is living in the flat!?
Is it owned by both of you?
Do you have any other family you could stay with?
I assume you are not in London, so the wait for housing shouldn't be too bad.
Maybe if you ring the police or someone about your sister that should get things moving. Does she have a MH worker?
Right, I think it is time for you to speak to your child's school and get a multi-agency support: school, housing association, children's services.
That will get the ball rolling.
You must get out of the house you are in. It sounds very dangerous for you and your son. If your sister abuses you, call the police again and get help.
IS your son at school? Ring up the head and book an appointment on the pretext that you need to explain his situation at home and why he is tired and anxious.
They will then start getting other agencies in to support you two.
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