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What would happen with our Children?(59 Posts)
I've been in a pretty rubbish relationship for a while. I've posted on here before under a different user name and was told to leave as he seemed abusive but I wanted to give it one last go. The relationship is dead though, I was just in the middle of telling him something and he cut me off mid sentence to speak to our daughter. He has no interest in me at all, if I'm talking to him about something he either ignores me or gives me a monosyllabic grunt. He'll be my chatty when it's about his work or interests though.
I really want to leave but I'm worried about our daughters. He is really hard on our eldest, she's 3 and if she asks for a drink or something but doesn't say please he won't give her one, he seems to provoke her and then punish her for it and sends her up to her room for the smallest reason. We were at a hotel having a breakfast buffet once and there was a cake that she asked for. He put it on his plate and said she had to finish her bread before she was allowed it. She took a bit of cajoling to eat but then as soon as she had he said it had taken too long so he ate it in front of her. She was really upset and he punished her for how she was acting.
He has a really specific punishment that he uses if she is having a tantrum or shouting at him, and he's started using it if she won't do as he says. I'm not sure if it's abusive or just really bad parenting, I can't put it in here though as it would be really outing if he came across it. I'm going to call women's aid to ask their advice on that though.
Despite all that my 3 year old adores him, when he's not being a prick he is really good with her, basically he can be a big kid and he plays really well and is a lot of fun but is shit and can't cope when it gets hard. I've told him in the past that our eldest can be scared of him and he sees that as a good thing.
We also have a 14 month old who is very attached to me and I am still breastfeeding. She will only be comforted by me.
I'm really scared that if I leave and he gets joint custody that I will have to leave them with him for any length of time, it's one of the reasons I'm still here. I don't trust him with them. Our youngest was ill and I was looking after her upstairs for a few hours in the morning. I came down at about 11 to find him asleep on the sofa and the 3 year old in front of the laptop hungry because he hadn't fed her. I'm also scared that I would be made to stop breastfeeding so that she could stay with him.
I get told constantly how lucky I am to have him because of how great he is so I don't know if anyone would believe me if I said that I didn't trust him.
Has anyone got any advice?
Have you spoken to a solicitor yet ?
He sounds abusive
He sounds highly abusive. Eating the cake was horrendous. I'm worried about the punishment you're not disclosing but I understand why. You do need a solicitor.
He sounds cruel, like he gets a kick out of punishing your DD which is hugely worrying. Nobody should derive pleasure from hurting/distressing their child, that's twisted. My DD is 3 and if someone did this to her I'd never let them near her again. Appropriate punishment is one thing, your husband is deliberately being cruel to a little girl. Twisted.
That cake eating incident is scary. I wonder what kind of a family he grew up in to behave the way he does.
I think you could do with seeking legal advice, but I totally understand how you'd be worried about him having shared custody.
I'd document your concerns and speak to women's aid/possibly social services.
With the 14 month old, in spite of breastfeeding, he would still have visitation with her. They could ask you to express milk for her.
It seems you're already emotionally detached from him, but in case you aren't. ... you should get to a place where you're confident enough to function without him and won't even miss him.
Start creating enjoying memories with your children without him. Try and show your DD3 how a loving parent behaves through your own actions.
I'm all for discipline and being firm with kids, but that cake incident sent shivers down my spine.
I think he is just really strict, he adores her and is constantly talking about how amazing she is. I think he's just going too far in trying to discipline her but to be honest I've got really confused over what is right and wrong as things have been going on so long. I hate myself for being weak and leaving us in this situation.
We're not married, would I need to see a solicitor to sort out custody?
I'm scared, he'll have so many people backing him up saying what an amazing person and father he is. What if they don't believe me? Only my mum has seen the other side to him but she's hardly unbiased.
I've never been able to express milk unfortunately.
The punishment isn't physically harmful but I worry how psychologically harmful it is, or maybe he is right and I'm overreacting. I'll call women's aid tomorrow as I need to get that clear in my head first.
You're unmarried - do you rent or own your home? Are you on deeds if you own?
I can understand your concerns about leaving children with him at a young age. But it's not healthy for them to see this modelling of a relationship long term.
I'd suggest getting as much advice as you can about your choices and financial position and working out what you will you when you leave him. In the meantime, keep your daughter shielded from his behaviour as much as you can - e.g. Go to bed early so you are rested even if DC wake at night, so you're not relying on you DP to look after them in the morning. I know this isn't ideal and you should be able to leave them with him, but you need to protect them in the short term.
The cake thing is calculated and sadistic, I would be running away as fast as I could
Oh scruffles I could cry as your situation sounds so similar to mine. I have split from my XP this week as he was abusive (mainly emotionally). I have seen a solicitor and got lots of advice. I too did not want to leave as I didn't want him alone with the DC. (Aged 2 and 1)
Who does the bulk of the childcare? Is your P on the birth certificate?
Oh, poor you, OP! It is so hard to predict what our partners will be like as parents, and becoming a parent changes you.
Your DP is not being a good partner to you and he is not being a good father to your children. I expect your DD adores him as she has to work so hard to earn his attention and praise, it's a vicious cycle, and it's very unhealthy.
I totally understand your fear of having to surrender your children to him if you get joint custody. It is a very good idea to call Women's Aid, that is a very good start, and I am sure you will get good advice about the practical implications of leaving your DP. If you have a good relationship with your HV, you can also talk to her. It's also really good that you are posting here for support.
Its often forgotten on MN that when you LTB unless there have been verifiable child protection issues the B is likely to have unsupervised contact with the children. I feel for you very much. Get legal advice and advice from women's aid before making any decisions. Its easy to say you are giving them a bad role model for a relationship but when you describe the cake incident I fully understand why you would stay to avoid him caring for them without you there. I hope you can find a way of getting out and also protecting the children.
He's not 'just really strict'. He's abusive to your 3 year old as well as you. Please take some advice on this.
I really try not to use bad language, but what you've got there love is a fucking prick.
The cake thing is horrible. I just can't understand how anyone could do that to a child. Just don't get it. Not normal & I dread to imagine his other punishments.
I have a similarly aged child & I can tell you that reading those descriptions is actually upsetting.
I think, if you split & raised your concerns, because what he is doing is abusive and neglectful whether he realises it or not, you could get supervised visits.
You might find that his interest in taking the kids for any length of time by himself would be fleeting anyway.
Best of luck. Have my first ever LTB. He's vile.
Sadly sassypants in my experience the threshold for supervised contact is very high. There is ,of course, always the hope he could start to lose interest but it can't be relied upon.
OP - could you tell your HV about his approach to discipline? It may be useful later that you have expressed concern
I think honeyandvinegar is right. The threshold is high and it is a huge gap in the LTB message.
OP I don't have an answer. I know what I'm going to say will sound unsatisfactory to many but will risk it...
I left. I keep close to stbxh. We talk a lot. Much about his parenting was good, my feeling is that now he is away from the daily grind of family life, and well...me, his parenting is good. He is so happy to see the DC they have a lot of fun, he is less stressed.
I'm sure he's not perfect but then neither am I.
They will definitely get more challenging as they get older, all I can do is keep communication open, esp with DC.
He sounds incredibly cruel. For your children's self esteem you need to leave. I would be documenting all the incidences of him being abusive and insisting on all contact through a contact centre. Women's aid should be able to advise more.
The courts would never ask you to stop breastfeeding simply so he could have your children for a length of time....they can't even tell you to express even if you could! It would be immoral and detrimental to the child.
All they would suggest is if you'd be willing to visit him with the children or he visits you until you decide to stop breastfeeding. Just breastfeed as long as you can, that way, he wouldn't get 50/50 custody until you do!
Its often forgotten on MN that when you LTB unless there have been verifiable child protection issues the B is likely to have unsupervised contact with the children
Even with known issues there is often unsupervised contact. To get supervised is very very hard.
Abusive men do get plenty of access. Not saying this to upset you OP, but that is the reality and you do need to be aware of it. On the flip side, a lot of men are far too lazy to actually take their given access because they don't want the work involved.
Thanks everyone, I'm reading but not getting much chance to reply!
Is 50/50 custody likely? I really couldn't handle that. Apart from not wanting to be apart from them for that long it's just such a long time for me to not know what is happening.
I do the vast majority of the childcare, I'm a SAHM and he works full time.
I feel sick at the thought of having to give them up for part of the week as it is. Surely it's better for me to stay and be with them all the time than leave and him have them on his own for half the time?
But surely you can make the contact very hard. Move a Cpl hundred miles away, etc, many many fathers lose contact with their dc rather than pay up.
What's his history. What are you and your children getting out of this. Your DD may appear to live him now but ......
What on earth is so identifying that you cant put it on her in case he goes through your threads. What are you scared of? Does he go through you phone, yr lap top, your bank statement?
Someone fa more expert Tha me will be along with the women's aid details.
I'm glad you seem to have a,supportive mum.
I'm a SAHM too in the same situation. I think that 50/50 is unlikely as the DC are so young, he works full time and you are their primary carer as it is. He may get one night a week and weekend.
Is the house jointly owned? Can you tell us what sort of abuse you are suffering in a little detail? Does he leave the house after an abusive episode etc?
I have a 3 yo daughter and feel physically sick after reading this. Please get your children away from him completely. He sounds like a power hungry sadist. Sorry if that sounds extrem but your parental instinct is to care for your kids & teach and guide them, he doesn't give her a fuckin drink if she doesn't say please, I clash with my husband on some parental approaches (mainly he threatens bed as a punishment- I can't stand it ! And she has never actually been sent to her room as I wouldn't allow it) but if he even tried this I would see red ! Seriously that's just sick, as for not eating her bread quick enough and him eating the cake in front of her .. I'd actually lose my shit on him. I don't even want to hear his "punishment" for that poor child.. she's 3 !!! Jesus !!Seriously get those kids away from him,
Sorry you think he is just strict and trying to discipline her ?
What does she do wrong if she forgets to say please ? Shes 3, they need reminding of manners, you remind them then give them the bloody drink.. he let's her go thirsty ?!!??!!And she needed to be disciplined for not eating her bread quick enough for him ??
Sorry but you're all she has to stop this monster
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