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I feel sorry for my abusive stbxh and its driving me crazy. Have you felt like this to? How did you make it stop?

(43 Posts)
ferriswheel Sun 05-Nov-17 10:40:02

Just that. He's behaved so badly towards me and our children. But I can't help but feel so sorry for him even although he truly has tried to destroy me. How can I stop this feeling of wanting to reach out to him? I know for someone to behave so badly they must be very unhappy and it makes me feel so sad for him and all he has lost.

Did/do you feel like that too? How do I stop this?

jeaux90 Sun 05-Nov-17 10:54:48

Because you are a lovely person but you have to acknowledge that not everyone deserves your compassion

I used to feel sorry for my ex I sort of still do but he's not worthy of my time or compassion

He's a narcissist though so going no contact was the right answer. My advice is to go grey rock and with draw if you can't go no contact

Justbookedasummmerholiday Sun 05-Nov-17 10:56:05

Write a list of his twatism and refer to it in moments of weakness.

Inkandbone Sun 05-Nov-17 10:57:41

I'd love to believe im a lovely person but i dont think i am (i am sure OP is though!)

But I think it's because the attachment is so strong because of the abuse.

ferriswheel Sun 05-Nov-17 11:14:19

Jeaux. Thank you, that helps, 'he doesn't deserve my compassion'. I'll have to create that into a mantra.

ferriswheel Sun 05-Nov-17 11:14:59


What do you mean 'the attachment is so strong because of the abuse'.

Inkandbone Sun 05-Nov-17 11:19:40

Hard to explain. It makes you dependent on it, on them.

ferriswheel Sun 05-Nov-17 11:32:47

I'm not in the least dependent on him. I just struggle to not see the man I married, rather than the fierce beast he became/is.

Sweetbell Sun 05-Nov-17 11:34:17

Don't forget he has power to fix his own unhappiness he just chooses not to.

Desmondo2016 Sun 05-Nov-17 11:59:25

I'm with you. Or at least for about 6 years after the split. His behaviour in the last 18 months has been to an entirely new level and I finally feel the detest he deserves.

Mishappening Sun 05-Nov-17 12:04:14

I am sure that he wants you to feel sorry for him - a good enough reason not to!!

I am glad that you have some good things to look back on; but do not let that blind you to what he has now become. There is a difference between trying to understand how a person gets to be like that and feeling regretful about that, and making sure that you and your DC are not subjected to this any further. One is compassion and the other is common sense - you need both in this situation - but need to prioritise the safety and happiness of you and your DC.

jeaux90 Sun 05-Nov-17 12:05:49

The man you married is the beast. The nice bit was an act.

butterfly56 Sun 05-Nov-17 12:08:15

It's extremely difficult, almost impossible to try an apply logic to his extremely bad behaviour.
The only way to stop him is to go No Contact.
Do not allow him into your home.
Abuse comes in many forms and Abusers can escalate their behaviour at the slightest provocation.

The Freedom Programme is an excellent way to help you get away from him. Google one in your area.

Hmmmfringe Sun 05-Nov-17 12:10:18

I still have a lot of compassion for my ex. He, like me, has both good and bad qualities. The things I loved about him weren't an illusion. They are very much a part of who he is.

Unfortunately despite having compassion for him the relationship was not good for me. I can understand where his behaviours come from, I can feel sad for him, but it doesn't make his behaviour ok.

Where I think I've had to draw a line is thinking about him, trying to make things ok for him etc. I don't wish him ill and I hope he finds happiness. But that's all I can do. My headspace, my energy, including emotionally, is needed for me and my DC. He has to be responsible for himself.

Aussiebean Sun 05-Nov-17 13:38:33

IS he sad for what he lost? Or would you be sad if you eeee in his position?

Is he sad because he drove away his family? Or is he sad because he lost someone he could abuse?

IrritatedUser1960 Sun 05-Nov-17 13:41:17

I met up with my STBXH last week and realised that I had no feelings whatsoever for this person who used to be the love of my life - absolutely nothing.
The chemistry and all the rest of it has totally gone because of his behaviour. I guess it helps that he is not my DSs father.
That day will come for you, it's all a matter of time.

ferriswheel Sun 05-Nov-17 13:57:03

Thank you everyone. I am still so confused. You really think he was just pretending to be nice? I guess I feel so shocked that anyone could mess up their life to such an extreme measure. I would so live to tell him that he could come home and it would all be okay. Except I do know that he is horrible and will never change. I don't know. It shocks me he's pushed so hard for the disaster that he's in.

Wh1stles Sun 05-Nov-17 15:27:26


greenberet Sun 05-Nov-17 15:52:33

Ferris I get where you are coming from - the root of it all goes very deep inside these men probably from childhood - most will have grown up in an abusive environment of some description so their behaviour is learnt. But they will also have learnt to protect themselves from feelings mainly when things have gone wrong.

I don't believe the good parts are an act as such -most people have good and bad within them - but they know how to hide the ugly part of themselves _ the part that is mainly how they really feel for themselves and to avoid revealing this they over compensate on the good until they feel they don't need to do this anymore.

They desparately need to be loved but will never let on as they fear rejection far worse. And so when they are challenged, when they feel under threat they will get nasty make you think it is you anything to try and stop you really seeing the real them.

But the irony here is this behaviour distances you from them anyway.

I knew all about my x' s past - they dread being left alone - but they will never reveal this to anyone as they think to expose this makes them weak, open to exploitation etc. They would rather carry on believing their false reality to protect their inner self from being exposed and destroy anything that may do this.

What they don't get though is that they are ultimately destroying themselves. We can understand where there pain comes from that gets displayed as abuse but it doesn't mean we have to tolerate it and so can walk away. They however have to live with this until they face their demons. Most do not have the courage to do this - much easier to blame someone else and think they are destroying them

ferriswheel Sun 05-Nov-17 17:42:33


Yes. Everything you've said, that is exactly it.

I know he tried to destroy me. But to also know the burden if the pain he carries, and that he has chosen to unleash the reason for his pain on me. It is so, so sad. I would love to help him but he has destroyed any capacity for my trust. I feel so sad he has to live in his skin. I can't go no contact as we have children. How do I handle this ridiculous emotion?

pudding21 Sun 05-Nov-17 18:00:26

Ferriswheel: no advice but just wanted to say I feel the same as you. I feel terribly sorry for him even though he destroyed me. I understand.

greenberet Sun 05-Nov-17 18:41:16

i dont think its a ridiculous emotion - i know it would be easier just to hate - but actually it shows what you are made of - i struggle too as I still have to have contact due to kids although not so much as they are 16.

But i have had some pretty testing situations that really need us both being on the same side for the benefit of the kids but this seems impossible - I cant do the no contact thing - i communicate knowing that most gets ignored, that some gets twisted and thrown back at me - but at the end of the day he is the kids father and i feel needs to know what is going on - what he does with it is up to him.

TorNayDoh Sun 05-Nov-17 18:56:11

It's okay to feel sad for him. He's broken or damaged somehow, which is at the root of his behaviour. That is sad. Things could have been different otherwise, but they're not - and that doesn't a) make it okay for him to take that out on others, b) it's not your role or responsibility to fix him and c) he's an adult and responsible for his own choices. If he wants to get help, there is plenty of help out there for him to get if he takes responsibility for his own life and choices. You're a nice person, you used to care about him, you'll want to help when you see him in emotional pain, but you cannot do it for him and I repeat - it is not your responsibility to.

christinarose Sun 05-Nov-17 19:19:05

Message deleted by MNHQ. Here's a link to our Talk Guidelines.

IL0veCl0thes Sun 05-Nov-17 19:20:42

He has successfully trained you to sublimate your own needs and feelings and instead to be acutely aware of his feelings and needs.

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