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.
This is a Premium feature
To use this feature subscribe to Mumsnet Premium - get first access to new features see fewer ads, and support Mumsnet.Start using Mumsnet Premium
Should I tell dp of past abuse(13 Posts)
I'm considering whether to tell my partner about how I was sexually abused as a kid by two different people. I'm not sure if I did how I would approach the topic to him.
When lockdown happend one of the abusers moved back into town and I've seen him several times. Its completely made me broken and I've been a nightmare around my partner without meaning to be. He said recently that he doesn't know why ive been so angry and that I'm getting mad at him about everything , which is true. I do apologise after but I know I can't keep treating him badly because of something I'm going through personally.
Any advice will help. Thank you
Do you trust your partner? I'd tell him if you're in a long term serious relationship.
Yes were in a long term serious relationship and moved in together just before lockdown. I'm just hoping he won't view me differently if I do tell him. Guess I'm just nervous aswell on how to bring it up
I'd tell him love xxx
I have in the past sat men down and told them, ranging from the headlines to the details. Up to you. Maybe just the headlines at first. Make sure he knows that this person has moved back and its really unsettled you.
Give him time to process it and dare I say it, watch how he does process it. Does he act like it was never said? Does he change towards you in a good way?
And what about counselling for you? Counselling is fabulous for we abuse survivors xxx
This is always so tough.
But in a back-to-front sort of way, it's good you've been inexplicably short with him, because that's a way into the conversation where it's not just coming right out of the blue.
I've struggled to tell past partners because... when do you just launch into something like that?
But with your DP, you can say to him:
"I know I've been short with you recently and I'm really sorry about that. I want to explain why, and it's also a subject that's hard for me to talk about. Can we put the kettle on and have a chat, and I'll explain everything?"
How would that feel, as a way to bring it up?
Bless you op.
I feel like you'll have to reveal a bit if the relationship and your mh is to survive. If you're already been short with him, that means something needs to change really.
Remember you do NOT owe him or anyone a "full account" of your experiences. Here is a sample way of talking about it:
"Dp I've been quite nasty and miserable lately. I wanted to let you know it's nothing you've done. I never really wanted to revisit this tbh, but when I was a kid, I was abused by a man, who I thought I'd never have to deal with again. Sadly he's gone and moved back here and it's really thrown me and made me upset. Nothing to do with you at all. Not sure how I'm going to learn to cope with seeing him in the village but I'm trying to work that out at the minute. I'm sorry for taking it out on you. It's been hard." - that's it, you don't have to go into detail at all about the actual abuse. You can focus on what is happening right now.
You can sit him down with a cuppa etc but be sure to let him know, the moment you suggest you sit down to chat, that it's nothing he's done etc.
Disclosing abuse to a partner can be hard and sometimes they react unexpectedly. Just be prepared for that, try not to expect too much from dp. Give him space to process etc.
I'm sorry this happened to you and that you've had to deal with the abuser popping back into your environment.
as it’s a serious long term relationship and you live together then I’d tell him
Maybe just sit him down and explain why you’ve been on edge etc and give as much detail as your comfortable with
Alternatively write him a letter if you don’t feel comfortable saying it face to face?
How long have you been dating?
To be honest, from experience, I would wait at least a decade. Too many men use these revelations as tools for abuse and you want to be really sure he isn't an abuser before you tell him.
I was also coming on to say wait for at least 6 years maybe more before telling your boyfriend. You want to be really sure about him before you tell him and living together for a few weeks is not long enough in my opinion. If it doesn't last with your boyfriend he will/might use it as a stick to beat you with.
My answer would also be guided by how long you've been together.
I certainly would not be inclined to give any more detail than rvby's suggested approach. Maybe less - enough to explain that you're struggling with something at the moment but not much more.
Have you got any professional support to help you address how you're feeling? Anger is a very normal part of being traumatised. There are ways to manage it without it having to affect your relationships.
Popping back in to agree with pp that there is definitely a risk that your partner could use your disclosure against you. My exh did just that to me.
If you've been with dp for several years, and the relationship is truly truly a good one, it might be OK to disclose. There are risks though. Very difficult situation to be in.
Thank you for all your responses. They've been very helpful and will take on the advice on how to bring the topic to him.
. He's opened up to me alot about his issues and past and I havnt as such as this is a difficult subject for me. In general hes a very understanding and patient man so I feel if I do disclose this to him hel know how to handle it.
Thank you everyone
He's opened up to me alot about his issues and past
Beware that some men do this as bait to get you to open up and reveal information they can use to better control you - with their own revelations sometimes not even being true. Especially where they make big revelations when it's still early days.
Please login first.