Some Of My Story And A Vent

I was with my ex-husband for 16 years, married for 14. Everything was like a fairy tale until we got married. There were three weeks between our wedding and when we moved into our first apartment and it was within those three weeks that he first put his hands on me. I should have left then but at not quite 19 years old I thought it was just the stress of the wedding and then moving and all of that. It continued like that for another 3 months until New Years Eve. We were getting ready to go to his parents and he got mad about something and grabbed me by my throat leaving clear finger mark bruises instantly. I changed into a turtle neck and in the car on the way there I told him that if this was how it was going to be then we would have to part ways because I couldn't and wouldn't live like that. He cried and said he was sorry of course, and it really did stop for a while. Two years later we bought a house and during that stressful time he slapped me. I reacted by punching him in the stomach and running and hiding in another room. All of this in front of his grandmother no less. I was so scared after I hit him back, all I could do was cry, but hitting him back and then freaking out like that had diffused his anger and he cried with me promising it would never happen again. A couple more years went by and we went thru a few miscarriages and then the still birth of our son. We grieved separately and began to work opposite shifts and spend less and less time together. The little bit of time we did spend together improved tho. We rediscovered each other and I thought the sweet, loving man I fell in love with was back to stay. Then he got an xbox. He would spend every minute of free time playing his game and was mean and hateful if he got interrupted. He still wasn't putting his hands on me but his words became hateful and his actions cruel. He transitioned from physical abuse to mental/emotional abuse pretty easily and was very controlling. Looking back, I really don't understand why I agreed to have a baby with him, but I loved him and I think I just always hoped he would somehow make it back to the man he was before. So we had our daughter, but things didn't get better. Everything was the same except now I was not only doing everything for him and to take care of the house but I was caring for an infant as well. But she was and is this amazingly beautiful light in my life and she carried me thru so much more than she will ever know. He got to where he would physically hurt me again, not often, and never leaving marks that couldn't be covered by clothing. And I just felt stuck. I hid it all, carried the weight of the world on my shoulders and just kept on keeping on for my daughter. When she was three I had our second son. He was a preemie and I had spent a couple of months prior to his birth in the hospital on bed rest. He was great during that time. He cared for our daughter and they came to spend every evening with me and stayed with me in my hospital room on weekends. Hindsight is 20/20 they say, and I understand now that I was not his partner, I was his possession and the vessel that carried his children into the world for him. I went back to work after our son was healthy enough for me to do so because even tho he made more than enough to support us, he "wasn't going to pay all the bills just so I could sit at home with the kids". He made twice as much money as me but would give me less than half his checks for the bills, so it would take all of my check and ensure that I never had any way to save money. I can't even count the number of times he threatened to kill me or told me just how he would do it and get away with it. Still I stayed. He had isolated me from all of my friends and although I was allowed to hold onto my family it was mostly appearances. I was not allowed to talk to them about any of the real stuff that was going on. He pointed no less than four different guns at me and told me he was going to kill me. When our girl was five and our boy was two, I had a major health crisis. I had multiple strokes and he refused to take me to the emergency room, convinced that I just had a pinched nerve. I was partially blind and couldn't dial my phone. He put me to bed and left me there for six hours. Finally when he came in from picking the kids up from school and daycare and bringing dinner since I was in no way capable of cooking, I demanded to go to the hospital. I begged him to at least call my mom to take me if he wasn't going to. I literally jumped up and down I was so angry and my head was hurting so bad, I told him I might not be able to see the address book in my phone but either he was going to take me, call my mother to take me, or I was sure I could figure out where the 9 and 1 were on the phone and then he could pay the ambulance bill but I was going to the ER. He took me. I was kept in the hospital for a week and the day I was to be released, he laid in my hospital bed while I played with the children, complaining that he wished the doctor would hurry up and release me so he could go play his game. Within two months of going home after that hospital stay I came to the realization that I could have died because of his neglect. My children already asked painful questions like "Why is daddy so mean to you mommy?" and "Why doesn't daddy like us?"; I knew it was time to go but I was so afraid of him and what he might do to me or to them. I broke down and told my family, not everything, but a lot. I spent another six months with him, all the while planning our escape. I planned everything down to the last detail and tucked away all the money I could manage to. On a Friday of a holiday weekend, I took my daughter to school and my son to his babysitter. I gave strict orders to the school and the sitter that no one was allowed to pick my children up but me, my mom or my sister. Instead of going to work, I waited for him to leave the house and then I called all the people who were going to help me move. We all met at the house and moved as much of my and the kids' stuff as we could. At lunch time, he was served divorce and custody papers by the county sheriff's office; we were already in another town at our new apartment. I did not answer my phone until a few days had passed and he had had time to cool down, and I still didn't tell him where we were. When I felt comfortable enough, I let him see the children and allowed him to know where we lived. It was the beginning of summer and he stalked me nearly all summer. A friend convinced him to just sign the papers and he did, so within 60 days all the legal stuff was over. He still wanted us back and I still loved him. I told him that for now we couldn't be together, I needed time to heal. He was going crazy without us, we came to a point that I told him maybe somewhere down the road we could try again but he had to go to counseling and we would need to go to family counseling when the time came. He agreed. At the same time, he was very lonely and began talking to someone online. I encouraged him to see what happened because I felt he needed to focus on something other than me. Since we'd left, everything had been about me, seeing me, spending time with me, not the kids, they were only his excuse to see me. When they (he and the woman online) were ready to meet, he found out that she was pregnant and called me asking what he should do. I told him if he was really her friend, that shouldn't matter. So they met and the following weekend he conned his way back into my bed. It was the first and last time I allowed him to stay the night in my home. Two days later he called me and told me that he felt he owed it to her and to himself to see where things would go with her. It hurt...a lot...but the intelligent part of my brain said let him go because he will never change. They had known each other two weeks and he chose her over 16 years, two kids and me. The following month she had her baby and a few weeks after that she moved into the house that I had worked two jobs to allow us to purchase. He also stopped working and paying child support. It's been over three years now and we've gone through some rocky times but they are still together and have a child together. The relationship between the three of us is amicable and I work hard to keep it that way for my children. My kids have had him investigated for child abuse against her first child and they were both ordered to take a parenting class and several other things to keep their children. My children are old enough, smart enough, and brave enough to tell me anything and I am strong enough and brave enough to protect them no matter what. I always predicted that if I left, my life would be no different other than not having to deal with him or clean up after him anymore; and I was right. I still get less than half of his income for child support, but I get plenty since I don't have to deal with his abuse anymore. He transferred his obsession from me to her and I get to move on with my life. I like her, I tried to warn her what he's like and that's all I can do. She has to make her own choices just like I did. I hope things work out for them, but mostly I'm just happy to be free and to feel safe again. My children and I are a tight-knit little family unit and I've taught them that their new family is a bonus, more people to love them could never be a bad thing! It took a lot and I still struggle sometimes, financially and emotionally, and I still have nightmares sometimes; but for the most part, we've come to a good place and I am thankful that I had the strength to get us here because I have no doubt that if I had stayed he truly would have killed me sooner or later.

On to my vent...
...My brother's wife and I used to be incredibly close. She had always been really vocal about the crush she had on my (then) husband, but I tried my best to overlook it since I knew he had no interest in her and, honestly, is not the type of man who will ever cheat on anyone. She and my brother only had boys and by the time I had my children, she was no longer able to. I had a girl and as a tiny baby, my daughter would do nothing but cry when this particular aunt held her. It was around this same time that she stopped having anything to do with me. Then when I left my ex-husband, she was really sweet to me, but started coming on to him in a big way. Again, he called me to ask what he should do. I told him to just tell her he's not interested and if she keeps pushing the issue then he would have to consider not talking to her anymore. So he did this and used his gf as an excuse. So she became friends with the gf too. She's back to basically pretending I don't exist, which most days doesn't bother me. However, my first love and I are seeing each other again and he also was close to her many years ago, and was best friends with my brother, best man at their wedding, all of that. She always had a crush on him too and now that I've brought him back into the family she flirts with him. I still don't care if she flirts with him, because he's not interested either. There is all of this and the fact that she threw the baby shower for my ex and his gf, but still I've tried to reach out to her and be there for her because to hear her tell it, she's so lonely and depressed because of her physical health and my brother works long hours. Still she ignores me. Fine, whatever. My life is fine the way it is. What is bugging the fire out of me right now is that she had the gall to put a post on facebook about how she doesn't have any use for or tolerate a man who abuses a woman. HELLO??? I guess that statement only applies to a man who abuses her or maybe doesn't apply to a man she wants to sleep with...or maybe in her mind I just deserved everything I got. I don't know, I just know that it was like a slap in the face. I should delete her but don't want to deal with the family drama it would cause right now. I know it's stupid to even let her upset me at this point, but we all have a weak moment now and then.
dropdeadredhead dropdeadredhead
36-40, F
Nov 27, 2012