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How do I get an emotionally abusive partner to leave?

(11 Posts)
queenofdenial2009 Tue 14-Jul-09 12:21:40

I have been with my partner for seven years and, strange as it may seem, I've only realised this year that he's actually extremely controlling and bullying.

I've tried to split up with him a couple of times before, but he's persuaded me to try again. However, now that I'm seeing things clearly, I want it over and for him to move out.

So, how do I do it? I've spoken to Women's Aid and a lot of the very helpful threads here and the strong message is that the abuse escalates when you try and leave. Do I sit down one night and tell him or do the couples counselling he really wants and tell him there (I know it's not recommended for EA, but I'm quite scared of telling him)?

Also, how do I best deal with things for DD who is 4 years old.

Any advice, much appreciated!

Alambil Tue 14-Jul-09 13:09:15

couples counselling will NOT work and is dangerous with an abusive partner... so don't even THINK about it

what did WA say about the practicalities?

I really don't think you should tell him your plans; it's also then that the abuse may escalate so please be careful

WRT to DD, what have you told her so far?

theDreadPirateRoberts Tue 14-Jul-09 13:14:50

Who's on the mortgage/tenancy agreement?

Do you both work?

Who is DD's primary carer?

Do you have separate or joint accounts?

Do you have any joint debt?

Does he have family nearby?

Have you got a clear idea yet of how you will fund yours and DD's life without him - would you need maintenance for example?

Sorry for so many questions, but hard to see full picture without!

theDreadPirateRoberts Tue 14-Jul-09 13:24:13

Sorry - just realised I went straight into the practicalities. WRT to DD, then it really depends on what she knows and has seen. How do you think she'll react?

queenofdenial2009 Tue 14-Jul-09 14:46:42

DD knows something is going on. I recently spent a month in hospital with a stress-related collapse. Unfortunately she saw me very unwell and rushed into A&E. I've talked with her about what happened and she said she thought I was going to die. Her behaviour is becoming a little more concerning - not going to sleep, pooing and weeing in bed and when my partner insists on arguing in front of her (which he knows I hate and try to minimise) she goes very quiet as if she's trying to be invisible.

To complicate things, I have temporarily lost my driving licence because of medical condition (until the Autumn) and live in a small village with no public transport. WA and GP have recommended I plan, but wait until I can drive and go back to work but it's getting increasingly hard to keep up the facade and he knows something is up. He found my being ill so hard that he is now on anti-depressants and seeing a counsellor - mainly because I'm not being sympathetic enough.

We both work but I earn more (although I don't know exactly what he earns as he's self-employed), we live in an expensive area with a mortgage although I own the majority of the house. No debt otherwise and we have both seperate and joint accounts. I'm the main carer as well, as he frequently goes away for work such as California or Europe - my work takes me to Swindon for the day if I'm lucky.

I'm not sure if he would pay me maintenance, but would like to stay in this village as my daughter has always lived here and is starting school in September. Unfortunately he is recruiting people in the village to his side of the story - how cold I am, how I won't talk about things etc. Ironic, becuase all we ever do is talk, but he says he can't change because it's just the way he is...

Alambil Tue 14-Jul-09 14:52:31

I was going through abuse and suffered with narcolepsy (the one where you fall asleep) - it only stopped when I left.... so it may be that you're going through similar that won't wholly get better until this is all over.

if you split, get the CSA to deal with the maintenance side of stuff - why should he shirk his repsonsibilities just because he's a twat?

Have you got a date for returning to work? It is very hard to keep up the facade, isn't it Especially when everyone seems to think the sun shines out of the proverbial...

Do you have a contingency plan just incase things escalate? Do you have the stuff WA recommend incase you need to leave in an emergency?

theDreadPirateRoberts Tue 14-Jul-09 21:50:54

Can you see a solicitor now, and establish the position re finances and mortgage? I'm concerned that you say you own most of the house - this may only mean that you paid most of the money in. Do you have any specific paperwork that gives you more equity?

And where are your family? Can they help? How much do they know about things? Can they support you at all?

queenofdenial2009 Wed 15-Jul-09 11:10:22

Thanks for your messages. LewisFan it's interesting that you had narcolepsy, I've been diagnosed with conversion disorder where your psychological issues convert into physical symptoms, which made me extremely unwell. At least I'm not the only one whose physical health is affected by all this.

DPR I've spoken briefly with a solicitor that WA recommended, but as I'm not eligible for legal aid I'd have to pay £150 an hour to see her. Foolishly we didn't have the tenants in common agreement redrafted after I paid off a large sum after selling a house, but I'm getting copies of the mortgage statements showing when the money was paid in. My family and his live a few hours away and aren't very involved with our lives - they're not in a position to help me.

One of the things I'm having trouble getting my head around is that he would become so unreasonable as to deny that I paid this money etc. I know it's naive, but to me it's so obvious it's over that I find it hard to believe that we can't resolve this as adults.

For those of you who have got away from an abusive partner, did you tell them that they were abusive or just say it was over and you didn't love them anymore? I think he's so in denial that if I say his behaviour is unreasonable, it'll start a whole campaign of him convincing me I'm wrong (a favourite game).

Part of me wants to get it sorted now before I go back to work in September/October and my daughter starts school in case I need to go to a refuge. At the moment, I'm still having to kiss him and tell him we'll be OK and that I love him just to buy time. But I know that it makes him wild if he thinks anyone has been having fun at his expense and that's how he would see these 'lies'. What should I do?

cestlavielife Wed 15-Jul-09 12:42:59

your words chill me as so similar.
tho i wasnt ill - but did get so stressed my counsellor starting asking me if i wanted to kill myself...

i could not make him leave. he stated it was his house (joint owned) and he would never accept "co parenting".

examples i gave to him of abusive behviour were turned round "but you shoudl ahve told me" " but that was just a reaction to your behviour" but but but...

he was on anti depressants too - complained a lot i never supported him etc. talked a lot round in circles (still does to others i hear...and still does by email to me if gets chance - has not been told off by my solicitor)

i did use "family therpay" to say "if he does not leave the home then i will ahve to as situation is intolerable" - i think eh thought i was joking, but then snoooped in my belingings for the rental agreement.

it was going to be v difficult to force him to leave until he did something really bad (injunction).

so you might have to leave then face financial issues / house later... it is not fair but for me was only way out.

yes he became more unstable after i left as did not want to accept - but if you leave you can do what i did not -DO NOT allow him in your new home to see dd - make it outside in public place.

by allowing him in our new home "i am allowing you here to see the children" (and so i could supervise the contact - big mistake) he began believing it was his - eg turning tv on to watch something then when i asked him to leave to watch it at his own house, refusing to leave...etcetc. he thought it was just an extension of the other flat - finally he blew and smashed it up and was physically agressive with me...

you are right to be very careful.

but you can do it for you and dd sake. you HAVE to do something.

life will get better.

it is a long hard road and you will need support and good solicitor.

good luck

queenofdenial2009 Wed 15-Jul-09 13:13:11

Thanks cestlavie, even though your experience sounds awful, it makes me think I'm not being completely melodramatic.

When I spoke to a WA support worker, she said I should listen to my instincts, even though she also suggested waiting until I got my driving licence back. My instincts are all telling me to get out now.

What's creeping me out at the moment is that he's being super, super nice. I'm sure that it will be held against me when I tell him it's over. It's been miserable for years and I just feel like I want to get it sorted.

I'm really stuck as he works from home, so have to be careful about using the internet and the phone. He's out this evening, so will try WA again. Keeping a diary also helps (well hidden!).

queenofdenial2009 Fri 17-Jul-09 10:27:52

I spoke to Women's Aid yesterday to get their advice on this and they were very helpful, especially on the practical side of things. The woman I spoke to agreed with my feeling that it might be better to make the break in the summer holidays before my daughter started school.

She said that if I choose not to have a friend present when I tell him (which I think could just inflame things), then arrange to phone a friend by a certain time. If she hasn't heard from me by a certain time, the she should call the police. This seemed like a sensible idea, as it's hard to imagine he'll be violent but who knows.

She encouraged me to call the police even if he's just shouting and intimidating me. He does that regularly but I've always hesitated. Apparently though if the police have been called out before, they mark your file as urgent and come more quickly if things really do kick off. She also suggested I speak to the police's domestic violence worker so that they know what's going on.

Talking to her made it seem very real and last night I felt guilty and doubting myself, thinking things aren't that bad. But then I re-read my diary that I've been keeping this month and it made me realise how frequent it is and being nice for a week isn't that great an achievement. I'm so tense waiting for it to kick off again, it's doing my head in.

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