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Abuse - I am drained and scared for the future

Community Member

First time post for me. It been a long time coming. Typical woman who puts up with crap. I feel like a maid and a servant who gets zero appreciation, only verbal abuse.
If I look back it has always been the case, what makes it to the point of where I cannot continue now, is the very occurrence of verbal, belittling words.
I feel I been strong through the years and had the ability to get through it. I honestly feel stupid now to have thought it might get better. It is just spiraling down. Now, to the point of not even acknowledge the fights, sweeping them under the carpet, almost always, as I know the fights get relentless if I either comment of them. I just shut up (most of the time and let the ride go past). It is so wrong.
A few times it has gone beyond words. I been physically abused. Threatened. Most of the time it is belittling words.
Overseas two years ago he physically abused me and I was ready to leave. He is the loviest guy otherwise…of course..never left.
Years of heartache with infertility, but luckily to be blessed two kids, 11 & 8. I just turned the big 50 and the thought of having somebody constantly put me down in front of the kids it what have tipped me over the edge. He is ruining our children because he cannot restrain himself with verbal abuse, do not blink an eye to it it infront of them. I can stomach a lot but I cannot accept what he is doing. It drives me insanely mad that he cant control the words. I had said countless of times to be quiet but that just fires him more.
I cannot give anything more.

Financial, scary. How he will behave if I leave scares me. I just have to leave for my kids so they wont hear his horrible rants and I feel absolutely exhausted from it. I have realised that the only time I look forward to is when is not at home.
I am so scared and I don’t really have a back up. My mother is getting dementia and my father is overseas. I feel guilty that I m trying to get financial advise to see where I stand when I leave. I feel guilty to get all the papers copied so I have a back up. I feel that I am going behind his back. What is the first step to take?

I am scared but the thought of continue the rest of my life in the same way scares me more.
Only one person knows how he is for real.

Thanks for listening.

15 Replies 15

Community Member
Thanks Geoff and Sleepy.

I so often feel like nothing I do is enough. If I work certain hours and it is not perfect for what he wants to do - he whines. If I don't get enough hours from my three jobs - I am lazy and he is condemning me for that.
Last night He got annoyed and told me there is no way that I can take the kids overseas to see my family this year.
He often push the buttons of things he knows I care for and it important to me.
I hardly ever feel like laughing and my best friend feel like I lost the light in my eyes. I am trying to open up to some of my friends.
I contacted Legal Aid and got an appointment in 10 days, so I am preparing for questions to ask regarding both our children and financial matters. For example - I am extremely worried about the mortgage. What happen if I leave - no way I could do both a rent and do mortgage payments. Where do I stand regarding the house etc.

Juliet - how long time has past since you left? What was the hardest part for you?

Hi EndieAnnie,

Your experience sounds so similar to mine, the constant walking on eggshells and shifting goalposts. You will never make these people happy, there’s no point in even trying. And what you describe about how he reacts when something is important to you is another feature, if you Google the term “withholding” you’ll see it’s another manipulation technique they use. Buying a house was extremely important to me, more than getting married, more than anything else, so my ex withheld that from me for over a decade. But he didn’t tell me that flat out, instead he took me to open inspections almost every weekend of that decade and then when I fell in love with a place he found a reason to withdraw.
If you leave, the house will either be sold and you will each take your half of the profit less what’s left on the mortgage, or if he wants to stay in the house, he will be forced to buy you out, ie take over what’s left on the mortgage and give you half of the amount that has already been paid off.
It has been about 6 years now for me. What has been the hardest part, hmm. Funnily enough it was none of the things I was afraid of, I was worried I wouldn’t be able to afford a place or be able to cope on my own but I actually coped really well. I think it was the freedom that I struggled with the most. Most people love freedom and I do too, but at first it felt quite scary to suddenly have so much freedom. I had gotten so used to the constant pressure of someone bearing down on me that I almost felt untethered without it, which was kind of sad. I also had a strong fear of loneliness, but I adjusted to that after a few months and realised that being on your own is infinitely more preferable to being treated like garbage. The loneliness I felt within the relationship was also far worse.

Hello EndieAnne, what Juliet has said about the house is exactly right and in the meantime you can approach the bank and tell them about your situation then repayments can be delayed in one way or another, may be under hardship you can mention.

Legal Aid will help you, whereas Anglicare can make phone calls straight away, probably when you aren't there, but can emphasis the hardship, it wouldn't hurt if you could do both depending on how busy they are.

What he is doing is unreasonable and as Juliet has said, he can buy you out otherwise the house has to be sold, this is what you need to mention to Legal Aid, one or the other.

Take care.

Geoff. x

oh Juliet! This could have been me...like 20 years of looking a houses...the problem was that he refused to buy unless it was on a "good' street...well we couldnt afford those houses. Until we moved from the area after I was made redundant. Finally go my house since 4 years ago...sadly I will need to leave....
He said not long ago, and this is the first time I heard him say that " Until I get more appreciated around here I will refuse to do anything with the house" he said this when he had a friend over- so his excuse or reason for not doing the things I cannot do (and I have done all I can regarding painting and scraping paint of the ceiling and renovating doors etc)

Also, if we have a guests here, he is the perfect host - happily then to start doing the dishes.
In 25 years he has only done a load of washing if I am overseas. Maybe vacuumed a couple of time and pure in need due to broken glass or something. Never changed the bed sheets. the list can go on forever. Not even making me a cup of tea or coffee...even though I ask him every morning if he wants one.
I would never ever lower myself to his level, I am so far off that as a person, but I sit here and think; What has my kindness done for me regarding being in a relashionship.
Whatever time I have left..and life really is too short to live any more time in a relashionship like this. My best friend is slowly dying from cancer and I am more worried of losing her and feel scared how empty my life will be without her beside me, much more than ever seeing my so called partner ever again.

It is really hard at times to realise why you behave or feel certain things. For example, I silly enough, I pity him, worried for his mental health when I am gone. I do think he needs help with his emotions. I have asked on many occasions that he needs to get help...but he refuse. He do not need it.

Oh EndieAnnie,

I truly know what you are going through, and I am so sorry as I know how soul-destroying it can be. Ah yes they are master manipulators, my ex was exactly the same, a “street saint”, he wouldn’t lift a finger around the house, telling me that I should be “grateful” if he does anything at all if I asked him to pull his weight, he acted as though I should be blessed by his mere presence. Despite me working longer hours than him, earning more money than him etc. And if I ever raised an issue his standard response was “if you don’t like it, leave” no matter how small my grievance was. But the second that people came over he was up and mowing lawns, bringing in the washing, mopping floors, cooking dinner. People (my own family included) would tell me how lucky I am, which was even more soul destroying, that the people closest to me were so easily fooled by him. He would also make out to his family that I was lazy, high maintenance etc (which couldn’t be further from the truth) while conveniently leaving out the fact that he was verbally and physically abusive to me.

“Until I get more appreciated around here I will refuse to do anything with the house" that is such a convenient and typical thing for them to say, because it’s subjective, and he alone decides if he feels that he has gotten enough appreciation. If you haven’t heard of it, I suggest that you read the book “why does he do that: inside the minds of angry and controlling men”. It’s freely available here https://ia800108.us.archive.org/30/items/LundyWhyDoesHeDoThat/Lundy_Why-does-he-do-that.pdf and is the most insightful and accurate account of controlling behaviour from a woman who works with controlling and abusive offenders. I particularly found the discussion around the personality types the most enlightening - my ex was a “demand man” and it sounds as though yours is the same. They will rarely get help unfortunately, because in their eyes they are fine and everyone else is the problem.

I’m sorry to hear about your friend, I hope you can be an incredible source of comfort to each other when you both need it most.

Your kindness is a gift, but in this circumstance it is causing you to sacrifice yourself and still have the decency to feel worry for a person who has shown you no empathy or kindness regarding any of your struggles. You deserve the world EndieAnnie, but at the very least you deserve peace. Sending you warm hugs xx

Community Member
I completely understand you because I went through that with my ex, I was with him fir 30 years I have 3 beautiful kids, but my ex Was abusive verbal and physical till one day, 6 years ago now, I said that is enough I left him my good friend took me to her place and helped me till I stood on my feet. Now I am with an amazing man whom he respects me, so what I am saying stand fir yourself and for your kids there is alot of help out there and make sure you look after yourself and your kids, all the best.