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he's just left - what now?

(29 Posts)
fixtheironingboard Mon 25-Sep-17 14:39:25

He went this morning. Things have been bad for years. I'm no saint - not at all - but I've been in therapy for a year working on my / our issues and there was a limit as to how much I could make things better on my own. He's made no effort and has continued to bully and stonewall me and I've had it. I gave him a choice this morning - marriage counselling or he leaves, and he left.

I'm mainly relieved. But I want to close my eyes and wake up in a year, when all the practicalities are over and I don't have to deal with this any more.

fixtheironingboard Mon 25-Sep-17 14:46:21

I just feel numb. It's a shock, even though it's been coming for a while.

Aquamarine1029 Mon 25-Sep-17 15:07:40

You need to give yourself time to process this, so don't put pressure on yourself by thinking there's something you need to "do." For as much of a shock as this is, it might actually be the best thing that could happen. Be kind to yourself.

fixtheironingboard Mon 25-Sep-17 15:10:29

thank you.

I will be fine financially in the short term: I can cover all outgoings without a contribution from him. Eventually we'll have to deal with the house - jointly owned - but that doesn't need to happen today. I'm pretty sure I could remortgage and buy him out if needed.

He's gone to his parents. I was half expecting that one of them would call me today to see if I was okay, but nothing. I can imagine the sort of stuff he's telling them. That makes me sad.

I have friends but I haven't told anyone yet. Kids will be back in an hour or so.

Just have no idea what action I am supposed to take right now - none at all.

fixtheironingboard Mon 25-Sep-17 19:26:15

Kids fed and washed and in bed. Older one doing homework and will join me for a bit of telly in a bit.

I'm mainly feeling relieved. Stacking dishes on the draining board and realising he won't be along to redo it and tell me I've done it wrong. Putting out the recycling in peace (one I put some unrinsed tins in, and he didn't speak to me for four days because of it). I've changed the bed linen.

Am caught between this massive, massive feeling of relief, and a grief for who he used to be (he couldn't see that he'd changed and that he'd turned into a controlling bully - he once said that his part in our problems was that he'd been far too lenient with me for too long - we're talking normal domestic stuff, not that I was out having affairs or anything). And then I am afraid that this is the calm before the storm. I don't know what is going to happen next.

spudlike1 Mon 25-Sep-17 19:31:46

Well done !flowers
People on here will give lots of practical advice .
The only thing i can say is keep going life will get better
Keep reading helpful books, keep getting therapy
Keep going he sounds horrific

Hermonie2016 Mon 25-Sep-17 19:39:06

I was where you are nearly a year ago.Despite knowing separation was essential it's still a shock and followed by sadness and grief.I didn't want to end my marriage but had to for similar reasons to you.

Take a few days, prepare for sadness to hit and start getting support from friends or family.
Be prepared for him to blame you and decide how you handle it.Have stock phrases to help you.
Get sleep as it's exhausting.Do eat well.
Start to think of legal advice, any recommendations from friends.If you think ex will be awkward pick a solicitor you wouldn't want to argue with.I chose a lovely empathic solicitor but his is a hardcase.

If you can get agreement on finances do so now as it might work in your favour.
I was initially running on adrenalin and then crashed and the tears came.However it's now a while since I cried and I have many happy days.

You will be ok.I don't know why so many men become controlling bullies.I would never have thought ex was capable of such viciousness but over time he morphed into someone else.It was obviously always there but suppressed until he felt comfortable.
Good luck

SandyY2K Mon 25-Sep-17 19:46:15

You'll be fine in time. He doesn't sound like a pleasant man.

fixtheironingboard Mon 25-Sep-17 21:03:00

Thank you.

I keep expecting to feel upset, but I really, really don't. I've just been downstairs to empty the dishwasher and lock up and am enjoying Netflix in my nice clean bed.

The problems in our relationship aren't all his fault - they're mine too. But I've been working on things as best as I can (not perfectly by any means) and he's been busy blaming me and punishing me for a long time now.

I hope he does agree to come to marriage counselling with me, but I can only see him sitting in his parents' spare room stewing and telling himself a story about what a bitch I am. No doubt his parents will baby him and back him up and endorse all that. I don't see him actually looking at himself and thinking, 'what can I do to help fix this' any time soon.

I put the cat food bowl in the dishwasher tonight. The last time I did that he slept on the sofa for two days, then shouted at me because his back hurt.

Shayelle Mon 25-Sep-17 21:06:00

You sound well rid flowers

fixtheironingboard Mon 25-Sep-17 21:11:25

I'm really no innocent at all. Things were good between us, then I had a baby and suffered several years of very very very poor mental health, which I dealt with badly. It put incredible strain on him and I didn't - totally refused - to seek help for a long time. But I am open to talking about that, to hearing him, to taking responsibility. I think he just wants to carry on punishing me. I'm better now than I ever was - feeling really healthy (with more room to grow) and it strikes me that there was something about a suicidally depressed and very guilty and ashamed wife that suited him. He doesn't seem to want or be able to manage a relationship between equals.

butterfly56 Mon 25-Sep-17 21:14:18

Good for you OP there is nothing like being able to do anything you want after living with a control freak who is also passive aggressive and emotionally abusive.

Put yourself first and watch as much Netflix as you want girl!

Netflix got me through some pretty tough times over the past few years after leaving the crazy exhwink

DJBaggySmalls Mon 25-Sep-17 21:17:09

It may be that theres no 'calm before the storm', just calm. You expect storm because thats been the pattern. Let yourself enjoy the calm.

fixtheironingboard Mon 25-Sep-17 22:00:05

God, the passive aggression.

Most of my therapy the last six months has been about dealing with that: setting boundaries for my own behaviour (not participating in arguments, not hanging around while he verbally abuses me, not joining in when he chooses to play the martyr) and he's steadily escalated to get a reaction out of me (as therapist predicted he would).

I feel like I can BREATHE.

I KNOW there are shit times to come. Times of grief and being lonely (though I've had plenty of that already). I dread to think what will happen with the house and finances and how all that will shake out. But I have a good job that pays well and allows me to work flexibly. I love my work. My friends, when I tell them, will help me. I think I will be okay.

spudlike1 Tue 26-Sep-17 06:39:51

Stop.worrying about what his parents think, it is wasted negative energy.

fixtheironingboard Tue 26-Sep-17 09:55:28

Ugh. He was round this morning to take the youngest to school. I tried to be just upbeat and pleasant but as soon as we were alone he turned. I asked him if he was okay, I said I cared about him. He said, 'you have serious mental health problems' and that was that.

I HAVE been very depressed - but he doesn't mean that. I tend to think that in most disagreements there's person A's way of looking at things, person B's ways of looking at things, and somewhere between them lies the truth. He seems to think that when I disagree with him over some minor thing - from housework methods to disciplining children - I'm either being deliberately nasty to him or insane.

I shouldn't let it bother me. I shouldn't let it bother me. But I am furious and upset.

RunningOutOfCharge Tue 26-Sep-17 10:00:26

Why would he say that? Is he trying to set the scene to take residency of the kids?

Sweetbell Tue 26-Sep-17 10:26:07

Good for you op for getting help and for continuing to seek counseling.
I would say in regards your 'D'h every time he uses the words "you" or " you have..." Or questions 'you' he himself doesn't have to take any responsibility for his own behaviour so every time he says you he is infact avoiding thinking about him.
He needs to at some point reflect on his role within this breakdown in relationship. And judging your mental health isn't going to help.
He's just blame shifting.
Having been in CBT/counseling myself I know the only statements anyone should make are on their own feelings but I suspect your H doesn't have the emotional maturity to actually state how this spilt makes him feel.

Continue to seek help and support for you and do enjoy the new calmness you've discovered at home. You sound like you know you can do this without him and I bet he knows that too!

Butterymuffin Tue 26-Sep-17 10:29:07

Well rid! Other people will see through the mental health claims. What's he going to base them on, the way you do the recycling?

hellsbellsmelons Tue 26-Sep-17 12:08:38

Please never ever EVER have joint counselling with an abuser.
Which is what your Ex is.
It's not recommended.
Counselling on your own is a great way forward so ensure you keep doing that.
You are well rid of this one.
Do NOT take him back.
Do NOT do counselling with him.
Enjoy your newly found freedom.
I think you will find your depression gets better the longer he is away from you.

fixtheironingboard Tue 26-Sep-17 12:51:17

Got my calm back now, after having a coffee with a friend this morning.

Today is fine. When I think about the future - the house, kids, etc etc then I start to feel a bit panicky. But just today, things are okay.

I KNOW I shouldn't

And I know what you're saying about abuse @hellsbellsmelons. I totally get you. The fact is, I behaved in very emotionally and verbally abusive ways too, when I was ill. The illness wasn't an excuse for that, and I should have got help much much earlier than I did - but it is the context in which this dynamic between us has evolved. I hope, still, that there's a possibility of changing that. But it won't happen unless we're BOTH willing to take a long hard look at ourselves. I know I am in the process of doing it and what I see isn't always pleasant or easy to live with. He's not an angel but then again - I am really not either. But whatever I've done I'm not being controlled and belittled and punished and criticised for one day longer.

I suspect that he's busy surrounding himself with people who will swallow his sob story and let him be a wounded victim, which will just feed his sense of injured innocence and self-righteousness. And I'm sad about that. Generally when people disagree with him or criticise anything he does, he writes them off. I am not sure he has what it takes to do what need to be done here.

I don't want to make any big decisions right now. Day to day, there is no crisis unless he tries to make one.

fixtheironingboard Tue 26-Sep-17 12:52:38

Sorry - missed out a bit of my post.

I KNOW I shouldn't worry about what his parents are saying to him. I know. For a long time he said the same sort of thing about them as he said about me (they're vindictive, stupid, bad, insane, etc) but now it's me he blames for everything instead of them. It makes me mad when I think about it, so I am just working on not thinking about it. It's hard.

Adora10 Tue 26-Sep-17 14:17:11

he once said that his part in our problems was that he'd been far too lenient with me for too long

Abuser, he sounds bloody awful OP, stop worrying about him and think about you now, he sure as he isn't.

fixtheironingboard Tue 26-Sep-17 14:34:03

It's just an indicator, I think, of our relationship. I'm either a naughty child who needs dealing with or teaching or correcting, or a terrible horrible bitch. He doesn't seem to be able to interact with me like an adult. Mainly because I wasn't acting like an adult. But I've changed that, and it's been changed for a long time now.

I don't want to punish him, I just want him to join in with me in moving forward. And he won't. And I am sad about that. But I will not for one second return to the way things were.

Still calm and feeling okay - though I am sure the bad times are coming. I don't think I will get out of this as easily as this.

Sweetbell Tue 26-Sep-17 15:48:16

If you truly believe you've been abusive to him in past before therapy and believe he is abusive to you now which he actually is then the relationship is toxic.
Its great that you are self aware and have worked hard at changing and improving your mental wellbeing but don't assume he wants to change.
You can't fix the way he treats or talks to you only remove yourself from him. And treating you like a naughty child/less of an equal may well have suited him. A need perhaps to be in control if those around him are less of a person and just an object to criticise or blame.

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