I finally had the nerve to call the police and press charges against my abusive husband two years ago. He served his time and I had no contact with him and neither did our four children. Then he was deported and a month later we began speaking over the phone.
I made it clear that I can’t be with him, and he then belittled me and told me from now on the kids and I are dead to him (he also aimed a few threats at my children). It’s a marriage I know could end my life, but now I’m starting to feel unwilling to let go of it. I’m so confused because I thought I was stronger and had moved on. Now I can’t stop calling him and trying to get him to calm down and be nice to me. What the heck is wrong with me? Silly Girl
Sometimes people write to us and they already deep down know the answer to their problem. In this case, Silly Girl, you are well aware by being in contact and trying to win over your abusive ex husband, you are acting irresponsibly and putting your wellbeing (and that of your children) on the line. You’re even admitting your fear of this man could potentially end your life, leaving four kids without a mum. If that isn’t enough incentive to keep you away from him – then I sincerely doubt an online advice columnist can sway you. But here goes…
Stop trying to ‘play nice.’ He is manipulative (emotionally as well as physically abusive) and wants to control you. You need to keep your guard up. Don’t call him, unless it’s an urgent matter that needs to be discussed about your kids. Don’t chat, flirt or cajole him into liking you. Don’t act like his wife, or his friend. He beat you up and went to prison for it. You need to believe you are strong, even if you’re confused and hurt right now. Tap back into that steely resolve that made that call the police two years ago and take steps NOW to protect yourself (and your kids) against his games and unkind words.
Don’t let him belittle you; make you feel worthless, powerless or unloved. You are beautiful and have the toughness (really, you do!) to collect your life and move on with dignity and courage. You do not need this broken marriage anymore. It’s garbage. Toss it away. Burn it up. Run like hell towards all that is good (family, friends, laughter, your kids, Lindt chocolate balls!) and leave this awful, damaged man to stew in his own failure to preserve and love his own family. Don’t let him level threats at your loved ones either. If he does – hang up the phone and call a help line.
In the US: call the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1-800-799-7233 (SAFE).
UK: call Women’s Aid at 0808 2000 247.
Canada: call the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1-800-363-9010.
Australia: call 1800RESPECT at 1800 737 732.
As a final note: you should also seek counselling from a professional. They can give you some more insight into why you feel the way you do (it’s very common for abused men and women to have a very low self esteem and a bucket load of anxiety) and how to move forward with more positive thinking and actions. Hugs.
Love, reality chick
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