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How to know when it's bad enough to leave?

(14 Posts)
Ivylee Thu 19-Oct-17 04:38:35

My husband has walked out of the house again after being argumentative all morning. We have a family wedding to attend this weekend and had differing opinions about how to approach the 5 hour drive with DC (2yo).
These arguments occur out of the blue quite frequently and I am often at a loss as to how they start. I am trying to not raise my voice around DC as he is almost 3 and tells us to stop yelling but hubby will follow me around the house to continue the argument.
If I go into the bedroom and shut the door he will storm in and stand there in the doorway holding the door handle while shouting argumentative nonsense at me. He then looks at me like I'm pathetic when I start crying.
In his calm moments he will admit his communication is off or that he stressed with work but I am a SAHM at the moment and have been able to set any plans in motion for my future as I seem to always be recovering from these arguments that always seem to take me surprise.
He took DC with him and I hate the fact the he being the fun parent taking him to the park while I am the sadsack at home by herself, crying and feeling helpless.
Last year he slapped me across the shoulder when I took DC off him one night. I had our baby in my arms with my back to him and it completely took me by surprise. It really stung and he ended up staying in a hotel for a few days. A few months ago he told me that I should stay in hotel too for a break bc it did him a lot of good!
Everynight he just reads his phone or rewatches shows on his laptop with his headphones in so there any a few days a week where DC is the only person I talk too.
I told my mum and a few of my friends how unhappy and unsupported I feel but I feel like they don't believe me. I actually asked one of my closet friends if I could keep some spare clothes for DC at her house incase I ever need a quick getaway and a few days later she texted him about something instead of me which obvs made me feel terrible. He is very charming and joins me whenever I see my friends but sees his on his own.
We have had sex once in the last 12 months and he seems to have no interest in it anymore.
He just sent me a text saying 'sorry for before x'.
I feel like I should leave him but I have no idea how to do it without support from my friends and I dont feel it is bad enough to contact a shelter. I actually called a domestic violence hotline last year after he slapped me and got the impression that there wasn't much they could do. They gave me another number to call during business hours but I didn't call it.
There is no real 'honeymoon' period after our arguments so its not even that the high and the lows are getting me down, but more the constant lows are making it harder for me to get back up to a base level of happiness.
We have moved 3 times since DC was born and I am so desperate for some stability but it is so hard to make plans for the future when his ideas change all the time and we can't discuss anything without arguing.
Bit of a rant sorry so I'll stop here. I guess I'm just after a bit of objective advice as I feel like I'm losing my mind at that my life is going nowhere. Thanks for reading if you got this far!

Shoxfordian Thu 19-Oct-17 05:24:49

It doesn't sound like there's anything good about your relationship. Is there anyone you trust that would believe you and you could stay with? I think you should speak to a solicitor about leaving him

keepcalmandfuckon Thu 19-Oct-17 05:28:42

Stopped reading when you wrote that he slapped your shoulder.

He follows you around shouting at you and your 3 year is so distressed by it that he says stop yelling. That is heartbreaking to read.

You should make an exit plan and leave. He is abusive and this is no environment for your child.

Do you have support?

keepcalmandfuckon Thu 19-Oct-17 05:31:03

Just read about your friends sorry.

He only lets you see your friends when he’s around and is very charming? Classic abuser.

You may find out who your friends are through this but you have to leave. Do you have access to money? Go and see a lawyer.

Ivylee Thu 19-Oct-17 06:31:38

I have some good friends bit I am the only one who has a DC. My three closest mates are all single and successful in their careers and sometimes I think they struggle to understand my reasons for becoming a sahm. One is going through ivf, the other is currently depressed and the third is dealing with her father's recent diagnosis of a terminal illness so even if I felt they were able to support I wouldnt want to burden them.

Unfortunately or not, I usually deal with problems on my own and I think some people see us as having this perfect life and they don't necessarily wish to have that illusion shattered.

My sister's boyfriend actually moved in with my husband as a flatmate after I moved out a few years before we had our child. I remember going around to my old house to pack up the last of my things to find my sister, her BF a bunch of my friends and my hubby (then ex) drinking and settling in to watch a movie together. I drove away bawling my eyes out.

I spent the next twelve months or so working and studying full time, completely isolated and so it seemed easy to go back to him when he proposed and so hard to stay by myself.

It seems so pathetic, I know. I used to feel like I was a strong person as I overcome a lot of adversity from my childhood but now Hubby is back home pretending like nothing is wrong and feel like the weakest, most worthless person I know.

Hubby has such a short temper with DC that I guess my biggest fear is leaving him and then not being around to help DC when hubby gets frustrated with him (he does love our child and would fight me for custody).

I'm also scared about how he manipulates my family and friends considering how little support i had from them and how much contact he had with them when we did split up (beforw DC) about 5 years ago.

The crazy thing is, when we first got together over 10 years ago, I thought he was the sweetest, most patient person I knew. Now I can't even sit for ten mins by myself without having to intervene when he yells at our child over nothing.

Ivylee Thu 19-Oct-17 06:31:39

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

WhoWants2Know Thu 19-Oct-17 06:46:28

It's bad enough to leave when you feel unhappy.

His winning over your friends and family to isolate you is a classic abuse technique, but I'm sorry that they've fallen for it. The yelling at you in doorways and shouting at your child are also abuse.

Don't give up hope- lots of women here have managed to leave in similar circumstances. You may lose some friends in the process, but you won't be isolated like before. You have a child now and that tends to throw you into the path of other parents who you can befriend.

One step at a time. See if you can put some money aside and the idea of having a bag of clothes stashed somewhere is a good one.

Ivylee Thu 19-Oct-17 07:04:22

Thanks for support everyone. He is back now acting like nothing is wrong. I am sitting here wondering if I am crazy. It is good to be reminded that other women have got through much more than this. I have made it this far. I can do it. I just want the best for my little one.

BertieBotts Thu 19-Oct-17 07:17:02

It is a common fear that if you leave the abuser he'll get unsupervised access to the DC. I do see the point here, it's both frightening and likely. However I would ask you to be honest with yourself about how much you are really protecting them by being present, because IME although we think we are shielding them, the abuser does still shout at the DC, is still aggressive towards them, and they are constantly witnessing them being abusive towards you too, which means that they are absorbing abusive relationship behaviour as normal. It's not enough to think that you'll 'step in' if it gets really bad. That just means you're deciding the current abuse isn't that bad.

While it's true that the legal system is shit at recognising abuse and abusers get unsupervised contact easily, it's false that they will get much worse just because you aren't there. In reality actually abusers don't often like parenting very much, so they tend to spend their contact times with their parents or a new girlfriend, and/or adopt a Disney dad approach. And while the children may still be exposed to some violence or aggression, it's not something that you would have actually been able to stop had you been together. Providing a home which is calm, safe, and free from abuse is the best counter to living with an abusive parent.

NoNamesLeft86 Thu 19-Oct-17 07:23:31

This has described my relationship with me partner/ex perfectly. I am in the process of leaving him now. Literally got the keys to my new home this week and just sorting the house out enough to move asap. Not ideal as I will be starting again and on benefits.

I could have written this post a few years back actually. But stupidly stuck around and now its just got worse as the years go by. Now i have 4 children and 2 dogs so doing it alone is a pretty mamouth task. But just like you and your partner, mine would just come back like nothing ever happened and it made me feel like I was being dramatic.

He is always lovely when anybody is around too so eveybody will think im mad leavig. Ive kept it to myself as ive got to a poiny I dont want to be talked out of it.

I personally feel mine will be a much better father if he is living alone and havinga break, seeing them he wants to see them. Currently we are both worn out and constantly exhausted.

SittingAround1 Thu 19-Oct-17 08:06:49

I was going to stay you both need to improve your communication methods until you write that he slapped your shoulder.
Violence is not on. It sounds at the very least you need a break from each other to avoid your conflicts escalating further.

Cricrichan Thu 19-Oct-17 08:59:14

Yes abusive and controlling. And the fact that he's charming around your friends means that he knows the way he treats you is unacceptable.

Forget your friends. See a solicitor and have a chat with your local welfare office to see what you're entitled to and what your next steps should be. It'll be a lot more damaging to your child to continually witness this. I'm guessing that he'll most likely try and win over your child when you're split up or not have much interest in him.

radiosignal Thu 19-Oct-17 10:15:37

This sounds like a really awful relationship. Please, please get out as soon as you can This man is not worth your time or effort. Your life sounds really desolate and depressing. Being on your own would be better than this.

Ivylee Fri 20-Oct-17 14:25:24

I just wanted to thank everyone for their time and advise.

I am on my phone and a little bit tipsy from pre weeding drinks so its herd to find the names but the comment about the Disney dad rings true since that's how he'll be and the next one about how we are so exhausted and things can be better and the third being pragmatic and to just go and see a solicitor.

The last comment which said my life was desolate and depressing rang true the most. It is shit. It is horrible. Even at our best it is good small talk.

I think he blocks himself off from connecting with me on a proper level but I just don't understand how he can live happily like that.

Don't know if I am going mad or if he is making me so. I have reached out today, (albiet in subtle ways) for support from family and it went both ways and I think I just need to speak to a solicitor and leave him.

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