Talk

Advanced search

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 emotional abuse?

(22 Posts)
whambamthankyoumaam Tue 19-Jul-16 23:22:10

I'm starting to notice things OH does that usually I just blame myself for or ignore, but after nearly 10 years together I feel like I can only take so much more. He wasn't like this in the beginning of our relationship at all. I think since we've had children together I'm really starting to notice things I hate that he does.

Firstly he always makes fun of me in front of friends or his family. He'll tell an embarrassing story I don't want told, or he'll show a photo of me I didn't want shown that he thinks is funny. If I object to what he's doing he complains that I don't have a sense of humour. I've put the fact that he does this down to his dads humour being quite similar, as he also enjoys embarrassing anyone and everyone.

Secondly, he never backs me up in anything. If I have a point of view or if someones done something to me and I feel upset about it he will usually defend the other person. It could literally be about anything, and it's like he would rather see the other persons side to the argument than mine.

Thirdly, he is never supportive. If he read this now he would say he is, but he isn't at all. Tonight for example I have done some work that has recently been in the press. I'm proud of my work, all my friends and family have told me they're proud except for him. In fact, the only thing he has said tonight is that I look fat in the photo of me printed in an article about my work.

The worst thing is, I got hurt by that comment, but when I said to him that it was out of order he turned it on me saying how it was a compliment as i'm not in real life so it's just the photo that makes me look fat! I mean isn't that just a horrible unnecessary thing to say?

I feel sick. This whole relationship has been hanging by a thread since we had children. I do 100% of the childcare alongside managing my own new business. He provides for us and works hard but that is literally all he does. He never gives me any affection or wants sex with me, and he rarely plays with the kids except for an odd 10 minutes. Yet if I were to say this to him he would tell me I'm lazy and that he's doing everything.

I'm so fed up but I want this to work as I know it would break my children and my in laws hearts if it didn't. I also can't imagine the embarassment of telling people we aren't together, not seeing his family that I am closer with than my own, and sharing custody. I would hate the idea of not seeing my children all the time especially when I do 100% of the care for them at the moment. sad

So is this emotional abuse or is it just him being an idiot? If I confronted him about this he would tell me that I'm crazy, need to lighten up and get a sense of humour. But it's just not funny any more, in fact it never was!

Haggisfish Tue 19-Jul-16 23:25:19

It just sounds horrible. Some of what you say could be light hearted but taken as a whole it certainly doesn't sound healthy.

fusspot66 Tue 19-Jul-16 23:25:58

It sounds like he's gaslighting you which is emotional abuse.

whambamthankyoumaam Tue 19-Jul-16 23:27:13

what is gaslighting?

Doinmummy Tue 19-Jul-16 23:28:22

Yes it's emotional abuse. It sounds
like a miserable existence for you, life shouldn't be this way. Don't let him erode any more of your confidence until you don't have the strength to leave - which is what I would so in your shoes.

nowaybaby Tue 19-Jul-16 23:29:39

If you are not happy, and I don't blame you, he sounds awful, that is enough. Who cares what others think...it's your life!

whambamthankyoumaam Tue 19-Jul-16 23:30:38

Haggisfish - I think that's why I've put up with it for so long. I try to take things as being light hearted as it's not like all of these things happen at once. But tonight's 'fat' comment really hurt.

nowaybaby Tue 19-Jul-16 23:32:32

Gaslighting is a way of making you feel crazy and undermining how you feel. Named after a play where a husband drove his wife crazy by turning down the gas light.

Lilacpink40 Tue 19-Jul-16 23:33:30

My STBXH was my best friend before we had DCs. After he became emotinally abusive and controlling. I think he found being a parent a much harder adjustment than I did and he resented me being able to manage DCs and work etc.

Do you think your OH resents your abilities or is there something else behind this (i.e. what is your gut instinct)?

Haggisfish Tue 19-Jul-16 23:34:12

It could be that he has fallen into the 'habit' of banter but I couldn't put up with it. A comment like that would finish it completely for me.

Kr1stina Tue 19-Jul-16 23:40:49

It's not banter , it's nasty and abusive

whambamthankyoumaam Tue 19-Jul-16 23:41:21

Thing is he wouldn't ever dream of saying to a friend or family member 'that photo makes you look fat', he would have said 'well done' etc. I was just really taken aback by that comment tonight, it's really hurt me as it came out of no where and I've gained weight since the kids anyway so it's a sore point for me.

To be honest I don't find it easy being a parent, i'm juggling my kids and work every day and somehow just about managing. I think maybe he resents that I have been a sahm and he has had to be at work. I recently set up my business because I hated not working (even though I've always done bits and bobs from home), but whatever I do is never as much work as he does apparently.

My gut instinct is that he's just as miserable as I am in the relationship but we both are stuck with each other forever. He's told me a few times he's fed up, wishes his life was different and that he's staying with me for the kids. So to be honest I think he's maybe subconsciously also pushing me away but knowing I'll just take all the horrible things he does.

Haggisfish Wed 20-Jul-16 00:05:15

Sorry, yes, I wasn't suggesting it was funny. It is very unpleasant and I suspect you've only told us the tip of the iceberg.

Haggisfish Wed 20-Jul-16 00:06:17

How old are Dc?

PurpleWithRed Wed 20-Jul-16 00:14:27

You are not stuck with each other forever. The kids will be upset if you split but they will be more upset being brought up by unhappy parents who stay together despite hating each other - and yes, they will notice, especially as they grow older. Or one of you will meet someone lovely and have an affair. Your in laws will be sad but they can still have a relationship with you and the kids. Your friends will probably know he's an arse already and heave a sigh of relief when you break free of each other.

Don't despair.

Namechanger2015 Wed 20-Jul-16 06:52:34

He sounds horrible, so similar to my ExH. Constantly making little digs that destroyed my confidence completely.

His comment about you being fat was bad enough, but twisting it back by saying it was a compliment was even worse imo. He makes you sound like you misunderstood him, when actually he should have apologised and admitted it was a shitty thing to say.

I left mine last year, and yes, it is hard, but you do get through it. It's not great telling people you have split up but the chances are they will have already picked up on his behaviour towards you.

It's a sad and lonely way to live, with an abusive partner. Leaving him will be hard and wonderful all at the same time. Him saying he is fed up and only staying with you because of the children is unbelievably nasty. Don't let the children see this as a normal relationship.

A year and a half after leaving I feel like I live in a different world completely.

LellyMcKelly Wed 20-Jul-16 07:53:37

Do you want to be doing this in 5, 10, 20 years?

Savagebeauty Wed 20-Jul-16 07:58:06

Yes he is EA.
Mine did it over 15 years ...my opinions were worthless, I was told everyday put weight on ( I was 11 Stone and six feet tall) and I contributed nothing to the marriage ( looked after 2 children and worked )
18 months post divorce life is wonderful.

Hushabyelullaby Wed 20-Jul-16 08:15:59

From the point of view of a child who was at home with desperately unhappy parents, believe me, the kids pick up on so much more than you'd ever think they would. I was upset at first obviously, but life was SO much happier/better after my parents had split up.

You don't need to stay in this situation, which sounds horrible, you need to believe in yourself and believe that you're worth more than this flowers

adora1 Wed 20-Jul-16 10:51:55

I am just gobsmacked that he thinks his behaviour is ok, I mean he is blatantly taking the piss out of you constantly, it's totally bonkers and not normal - I think you need to stand up to him and stop allowing him to continue to bully you, if that means leaving the horrible twat, get on and do it, life is too short to be around such a nasty negative person.

Namechanger2015 Wed 20-Jul-16 10:53:40

Please look up The Freedom Programme. You can find your closest course, but lots of them are not listed on here, and can be difficult to find.

In which case call the National Domestic Violence helpline on: 0808 2000 247 and they will help you to find a Freedom Course near you. It's free, and you don't have to go every week.

They will help you to identify his behaviours and the effects they are having on you - it helped me immensely to be able to put a name to his shitty tactics and not think I am just a silly, fat woman who doesn't understand the things my clever and superior-in-every-way husband is telling me.

Please do this for yourself, if not for your children. Nobody needs to live like this, under the control of a horrible coward.

Lilacpink40 Wed 20-Jul-16 23:40:11

namechanger your "my clever and superior-in-every-way husband" comment sums up my ex's passive agressive stance perfectly. I, as a working Mum, running a house independently, with 90% of the childcare role, can of course not understand all the hard things he does. He tries to 'correct' me even now.

OP getting away isn't easy, but staying is shitty a lot more of the time. I love not living with my ex. If you'd prefer keeping your sanity and having less disillusionment in your life then seriously consider the change.

Maybe try counselling as a last chance.

Join the discussion

Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now