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.
Left an abusive relationship/ Need handhold / advice / so lost / in shock(28 Posts)
This is cut and pasted, i originally posted in chat too
After months of abuse, I walked out 6 days ago, leaving everything - home , pet, job , income, friends, new life (well newish,..had been there 3 yrs) you name it. The one bit i don't miss, obviously, is my abusive alcoholic fiance ( I don't have children, by the way)
I could really do with some support / advice/ handholding..i don't know if Chat is the best section..please be gentle
I am totally lost. The shock is going and the despair, anger and fear is setting in, Total panic really. I am back at my parents, in my hometown, 50 miles from him. I feel like the world's biggest failure (am in early 40s, left home 20 yrs ago, is surreal to be back in childhood home. Thought it might be comforting but that is not the case)
My parents are supportive in a practical way but certainly not in any other. They wanted me to come here but are stressed by my very presence. I have played everything down so as to not worry them, and when i have tried to confide, they just do not understand. They also don't understand that i am unwell with shock/ stress/ depression and feel i should just snap out of it. After all, I am 'safe ' now (I don't feel it , as ex is continually harrassing me here. it's never been physical aggression, but very severe verbal eg death threats to me, his suicide threats, blackmail, stalking and very controlling, threatening friends and family, you name it.) Ex has never been reported, as his suicide threats & blackmail stopped me doing that.
I feel completely lost, unsupported and terrified. I have no idea where to go from here. I need some space to be alone and think but i won't get that here. I have lost my income and had to leave without notice so no monies due, so please no suggestions about 'go to a hotel for a few days' type of thing. My mother is very stressed and my father is blaming me for merely being here with my problems, though as i said, i've played them down, and have not talked to her much, because she just doesnt do that type of thing well. There is constant criticism and reminders of 'well we are putting a roof over your head and feeding you' that type of thing. I just try and keep out of their way. I have no savings, ex just took all my money for his booze, fags, drugs etc. Basically clipped my wings. I have overdraft and thats it..but nothing coming in. Parents are pushing me to get a job and i've only been back 6 days and need time to get over shock / adjust / accept/ get over trauma of the last 4 months of hell...i'm not sleeping and keep shaking and crying, how on earth could i cope with a job right now (or interview) when my health, self esteem and confidence is so low.
Just not coping, feel so very alone
Add message | Report | Message poster
lololizzySun 10-Feb-13 19:29:30
i just feel like an adult baby, totally humiliated and the world's biggest failure for being back with parents instead of being able to take care of self (couldnt stay where i was working, would need London rent for that, was on minimum wage, and didnt want to be anywhere near him) Parents just think i can come back and walk straight into a new life, just like that
You need someone to talk to, and what I did was pay a lovely therapist who sat and patiently listened to me while I worked all of these things out (it saved my relationship with my parents who like yours didn't know how to cope). It was the best money I ever spent and changed my life. You cannot rely on your parents to do this on an emotional level, and it is probably too much for friends unless they are saints or have been through the same. If you can't afford a therapist (probably about £40 a go), ask whether the therapist will let you pay less as you have no income (apparently they may do), or there are trainees which might be cheaper, or talk to your GP and explain. There is also Al Anon where you can get support and that costs nothing.
You are a success, you got yourself out of that abusive situation and you have a whole new, fresh life ahead of you.
Look for a job abroad, even if just temporary? Or a live-in job.... I think you need some time to be yourself. Reverting to living with parents would be stressful without the other factors. Remember, the worst is over. From here on in, it is going to get better. Speaking to your GP is also a good idea.
no money at all right now and none owing (as had to quit job start of month so had been paid) but hopefully going to get some counselling from One Stop
Firstly, well done for getting out. That took a lot of strength; don't underestimate how difficult it was to do.
I also think that speaking to your GP would be a good idea as they can refer you for free counselling on the NHS, and I'm sure a short but frank explanation of your circumstances would convince them that you would benefit from it.
If you can get your emotional side looked after like that, then you can be more practical when speaking to your parents - it's such a shame that they're not emotionally available to you, but it's great that you can stay with them, so focus on that, and if you're not up to talking about anything other than your situation (and why would you be?), can you get them talking? Ask about dear Uncle X's health these days or that sort of thing?! Just to take the pressure off you for a bit.
Oh, sorry, didn't read your message about getting counselling already. Have you sorted that already since leaving? If so, you're on the ball much more than you give yourself credit for!
no, not sorted counselling exactly, but awaiting a call from Woman's Aid, whom i hear may be able to offer it?
Well done... you got out, the rest will follow.
Your parents want you there, bless them, of course they don't know what to do but that doesn't matter as you will sort this out and it better that you do and they will cook for you and keep a roof over your head until you do and it will happen quicker than you think.
Just take it one day at a time - you will start to see very little improvements please try and notice these not the rest of the day being not how you want it to be. I have been there and people kept having to tell me that.
Cry as much as you like, you can now, he isn't there to judge you. And when you can't sleep, just think how peaceful it is and how safe. I used to stick my head out of the window and just breathe in fresh air.
Take some long walks with a pen and paper in your pocket, the ideas and the plan forward will come - you are not daft no matter what your ex said to you in the past.. you are free to do what you want.
You can telephone friends or chat over the internet - keep in touch with them but talk about the future.
A part time job would be good for a start to get you out of the house - you will surprise yourself how you can do it. It will give you confidence - you were working not long ago.
Ignore threats of suicide, he thinks too much of himself to deprive the world of himself. If he keeps harassing you - ring the police they will ring/see him - you don't have to.
You are amazing and FREE!!!!!
Charlotte, I do talk to them about other things, all the time, to break the ice, eg their grandkids/ my brother, etc etc. It's just my issues. My dad has told me not to stress my mother (even though my mum is younger and the fit one!) And, they just don't understand. There's no point trying to extract empathy from a brick wall. They are soooooo insular and wrapped in their own lovely little bubble. But , practically, theyre pretty good
Women's Aid are brilliant. There you will find people who understand totally what you've been through and what is difficult now. Take as much support from them as you can!
That's a good perspective on it, Betterthanever. Ok I can't sleep...that's difficult right now..instead of getting panicked..focus on peaceful and safe. And quiet. No noisy stressful London traffic. No ex telling me he wants me dead or emotionally blackmailing me into sex. Keeping me up all night knowing i have work the next day (he didn't work) Yep, that's a good take on it.
This is awful to say (so please go gently on me, or tell me its completely normal, if that is the case) i'm looking forward to hearing from WA, and maybe going to the drop in, but at the same time, I'm really embarrassed. Like, how did i end up like this, I was a professional woman, used to be so independent and carefree, not a care in the world, never had a mortgage or kids, world should've been my oyster. I don't fit the stereotype of 'battered housewife' 'abused mother' etc. I wasn't 'trapped' because I had kids or whatever. What excuse did i have. I feel ashamed. How did i let this happen. Why didnt i go sooner. (before the blackmail and threats stopped me) I let him convince me i needed him, and a roof over my head, and had nowhere else to go
WA are great and should support you through the first few weeks
if their budget hasn't been slashed by local council there is also a survivor's forum online which you could look at and post on if you felt it helpful www.womensaid.org.uk/.
A visit to your GP should enable you to document your inability to work, and i think if you can bear it you might benefit from a visit to the CAB...certainly in cases of domestic violence the claimant will not have to be looking for or actively preparing for work for the new universal credit, I don't know what benefits you may be able to claim currently.
Well done for reclaiming your life OP. the good times will come but in the meantime be kind to yourself and find solace in nature, in familiarity and things that give you small pleasure. One day this will all be past and you will be proud of yourself.
Get your phone number changed, and go to the police to report him for harassing you.
Can your brother help in any way?
Can you look for a job that is "live in" as a stop gap, maybe at a pub, perhaps in a completely different area?
All I can say is, I have been there, and I moved 250 miles away to start a new life to get away from someone who was both physically and mentally abusive. I couldnt go back to my home town as he would only have been a couple of miles away.
That was 15 years ago and my ex soon realised I would not be going back, and gave up.
You have done the right thing, and believe me, before too long you will get your confidence back.
my pet is ummmm complicated (not conventional, shall we say!) however i have put a backup plan in place with the right contacts, should ex fail to look after him, or threaten to rehome him. It will be a pain, but i'm not losing my pet on top of everything else.
( i can't have pet at my parents). But, i hope one day to have him back. It's making me so sad
Brother is in Australia! doesn't even know i'm back yet! I have friends back here in hometown. That's what's going to help me the most, just having familiar old faces. I was too embarrassed to even let them know i was back, at first. but have started making contact. Feel tons better that they are still here for me.
at the moment, i'm still too scared to block/ bar ex, in case there is an emergency with the animal. I'd never forgive myself. Ex doesnt drive and i would need to be there with car, if necessary. And yes, i realise it's laying me open to abuse. I'm ignoring him now, but that's not easy, he gets in my head
Darling, there are No stereotypes.
That crushing feeling of abject idiocy, and monumental stupidity is just excruciating isn't it?
It won't last, it will pass.
Does it help to know that we all feel like that when we are first out.
Have you read Why Does He Do That? By Lundy Bancroft? Its really good, it will help you understand, snd help you forgive yourself.
You did nothing wrong love. Nothing at all.
Do you have people in your life that will support you emotionally? My family didn't, but there are so many friends, and so many mumsnetters that helped me through the darkest days.
This will be a long journey, but to the best place you've ever been in your life, I promise!
It'll be ok. You're safe now, you've got us too!
I was a professional woman, used to be so independent you still are.
You are also a very nice person which is why you didn't walk out earlier you gave him the chance to change because you cared about him.
My ex was like no one I had ever met before and thankfully no one I have ever met since. It took a while for me to understand what was going on and actually a lot more of that came after he was gone.
You have done nothing wrong. You are not to blame for what he did to you or for staying after the first time he did it. What he did is not normal nor what you were used too and that is why your parents will not understand right now esp. about the emotional stuff. They will talk practical because they know about jobs and things...
Glad you have WA support. I wish I had known more about them years ago.
in the meantime be kind to yourself and find solace in nature, in familiarity and things that give you small pleasure. fool always has good advice.
Women's charities like behind closed doors etc have foster homes for pets of all kinds. People register to be called on if women flee. Sort your pet and cut ties. You probably don't want to hear this but you are not in a good place right now and you are leaving this door open because the dynamics of you giving him another chance are still in play. I know this from personal experience. Also you owe it to your parents, if you are sheltering there, to cut ties properly with your abusive ex
WA, counselling, reading the EA thread, the Freedom Programme and Why Does He Do That by Lundy Bancroft are all a help, in fact Lundy is the real eye-opener. Lots of other great resources on the EA thread, which has got many wonderful women through from realisation that they were suffering abuse to coming out the other side.
Do ask your GP, but be aware that unless you have been through abuse or have spent a lot of time working with survivors of abuse it is a really hard thing to "get". It is also a very hard thing to listen to, people simply don't understand why victims of abuse don't just leave at the first sign of abuse. And the natural reaction is to minimise it or think it wasn't that bad.
It will take time and some work from you to process. Unless it is totally unbearable to be around your parents, I would stay there for at least a little while.
My parents will keep me warm and fed and looked after practically. They are just emotionally not very responsive. When i turned up on doorstep in complete state, there was no hugs or anything. That's not how we are (though i'm tactile with friends) They just don't do emotion and feeling. And it's very very restrictive being here. They moan if i use the phone. They moan if i'm on the computer, they dont care its my lifeline. They moan if i use hot water, hell if i even drink a diet coke (diet nazis!) They just don't get it. They're not going to change now. It's very oppressive. But right now..i don't have options. They are good people . Just very..alien to me!
Join the discussion
Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.Register now
Already registered with Mumsnet? Log in to leave your comment or alternatively, sign in with Facebook or Google.
Please login first.