This is my story of my marriage to an abuser. This post was written in real time, shortly after my ex husband moved out, in August of 2013. It reflects my thoughts at the time, as a picture of what it feels like to pick up the pieces after separation.
Warning: descriptions of violence and abuse may be triggering.
For Part 1: Back to the Beginning
For Part 2: For Better or For Worse
For Part 3: Moving and More
For Part 4: Going Downhill
For Part 5: Changes.. and Hope?
For Part 6: An attempt at reconciliation
For Part: 7: Here we go again..
Marriage and mayhem… two things that don’t normally go together, right? But they have in my home.
I may have mentioned before that my marriage has been abusive. It has been, and with the coming of my fifth child, turned that way again. It was a slow, gradual change, that started right about the same time that we conceived her. At first, it was subtle — silent moments, ignoring me, fits of anger, overly harsh criticism – of both me and my daughter – and while I wasn’t happy, I didn’t name it abusive. I did start trying to correct it though. I asked for conversations, I offered books to read aloud, and I asked for what I needed… and didn’t get it.
As time went on, things grew worse, and more than just verbal and emotional. The first major incident of physical abuse (this time around) was about 4 months into my pregnancy, and scared me witless. I packed up my kids, and took them and my pregnant self to my brother-in-law’s place. They calmed me down, and both my husband and they convinced me to go back..
But things were never the same.
Come 6 months into my pregnancy, I started back with the counselling program we had used the first time. I asked him to join with me, and he did.. sporadically. There was no consistency, and by my 7th month, my counsellor was advising me to ask for a separation then.
I waited in limbo until after our baby was born. When she was a couple weeks old, I sat my husband down and asked him to either get very serious about this counselling program… or get out. He said he would get serious.
But he didn’t. He dabbled. He did a bare minimum, and not much changed. I waited, still in limbo, 1 month, then 2.. then 3.. and finally I couldn’t take it anymore. I asked him to leave, and 2 weeks ago, he did.
So my marriage is in still in limbo.
Physically, emotionally, even financially, I’m in a better place. I feel safer, I feel more on balance, I feel more positive since he’s been gone. He has been attempting to work harder with the counselling program, so time will tell.
I am slowly recovering my emotional health, and I am planning for my future. I’m also, oddly enough, discovering what I need and want in a marriage, should I ever have one again — with my estranged husband or with someone else. Divorce isn’t what I needed or wanted, but I’m now at a place where I would rather be single than have what legally was a marriage but in reality never was.