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Discussion Starter #1
I've been going through a lot in my relationship with my DH. My little house of cards which had been teetering dangerously fell down about a month ago when he cheated on me. I've been dealing with some hard truths since then or at least trying to figure out the truth. Making some realizations that we are in a very unhealthy dynamic. I've been talking to my mom a bit about it. Not giving her the full truth but telling her some of it.<br><br>
My mom's husband, my stepfather since age 6, has always been very abusive towards me, physically, mentally and verbally. Always has been just a downright nasty person to me, always will be. If I want to see or spend time with my mother, I deal with it so over the years, I've learned to deal with it. My mother's take on it is that it is between him and me, which sucked for me as a child when I was getting beat and told I was a wh*** and c*** at age 8. We have limited contact with him. There have been multiple incidents where stepfather does not respect our boundaries as parents. And I mean multiple. He is not allowed around our children unsupervised.<br><br>
Last night, he ended up taking my ds without our permission. Stepfather called to tell me had ds with him and he was taking him out to eat. I specifically said ds needed to come home immediately. He called me all sorts of nasty stuff and said "No wonder (my DH) cheated on you, no wonder (my DH) hates you, you're a **** blah, blah, blah" in front of my ds and hung up. I tried calling him but he wouldn't answer. As I didn't know where they were, I could do nothing. He finally answered his phone about 45 minutes later, spewed nasty stuff at me when I said that I needed to know where they were so that I could come get ds and hung up on me again. They came home an hour after that at close to 11 pm. This was late at night on a school night when my ds still had a 3 page essay to write.<br><br>
We talked to ds about how this all wasn't okay because he heard everything nasty that my stepfather said to me on the phone and, according to ds, stepdad said a few more choice things about me afterwards. We talked to him about how nasty stepfather can be and how he lied about a lot of things. I've always protected my children from the worst of it because I didn't think it was necessary for them to know so I definitely did not go into details but just said that stepfather's behavior was not okay, that ds did nothing wrong and we talked about what he had heard about me.<br><br>
So I'm done. Totally done. As is my DH. However, there are certain factors that come into play. My relationship with DH is very shaky. It may get very ugly. If I try to leave there will be a custody battle and, due to outside factors, I am not sure of the outcome. My mother, while not being good emotional support, can always be counted on to provide financial support. I am a SAHM so financial support is going to be key if I leave. If I cut ties with my stepfather, I will not have that cushion to fall back on. My biological father, who is no peach himself in the abuse arena but isn't nearly as bad, would help me however he can but he lives on Social Security and he is my only other family in the area. However, if I don't cut ties, stepfather will see it as a victory and things will escalate with him.<br><br>
I have to make an initial decision quickly as my ds has a baseball game tonight and stepfather will definitely be there.
 

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it sounds like you know for sure you don't ever want to be around this person and don't want him around your kids. that is out of love for your children and respect for yourself - so trust that impulse.<br><br>
at this point it's unknown whether you would lose your mother's financial support. maybe you would. what would that mean? that you don't have money for a lawyer for a potential custody battle? get on the legal aid waiting list now. i'm not saying it's no big deal to risk losing that financial support, but in this case i think it's worth it.<br><br>
i'm sorry you're going through all of this. it makes sense why you didn't see your husband as abusive in comparison with what you had already experienced. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/hug.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="hug">
 

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That's a really hard place to be. I don't know what the right answer is. I would cut contact with stepfather, but I don't know if that is really the right answer for you. I'm so sorry. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/greensad.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="greensad">
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Awesome. My biological father called me to tell me I overreacted. He has no idea what I've endured at the hands of my stepfather.<br><br>
I'm sure the next step is for them to all get together and decide I've lost it. I feel so trapped and afraid.
 

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<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/hug.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="hug"><br><br>
Do you qualify for govt aid? I'll be applying for tanf and food stamps in hopes that I can still sahm. Maybe that in addition to very part time work?<br><br>
Good luck, hope you find some solutions.
 

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I don't really know what to say, that sounds like a tough situation but *my* opinion on it is that you do need to cut ties. You can 'fix' the financial issues etc. that may arise but it would be so much harder to 'fix' yourself & your family emotionally if you allow him continued contact with you. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/hug.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="hug"> I hope you are able to come to a decision you can find peace with.
 

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<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/hug.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="hug"><br><br>
I agree with crunchy-mommy. It would be a very difficult decision, but I agree that the financial situation can be fixed, the damage this man is doing to you and your family isn't worth the price.
 

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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>Theia</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/15397374"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;"><img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/hug.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="hug"><br><br>
I agree with crunchy-mommy. It would be a very difficult decision, but I agree that the financial situation can be fixed, the damage this man is doing to you and your family isn't worth the price.</div>
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<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/yeahthat.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="yeah that">
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Yeah, I know what the answer is. I was just trying to find some way around it. I'm not totally hopeless about my situation with my DH.<br><br>
We sent stepfather an email yesterday asking him to not approach us at my ds' baseball game. My mom is heartbroken which hurts me but we've dealt with his stuff for years. He called and flipped out on me but I stayed unemotional and let him rant and just kept repeating that we asked that he not approach us.<br><br>
I'd like to have the appearance of providing the opportunity for supervised visitation in case he tries to turn my kids against us later on so I've drafted this email. Any thoughts? I'm having trouble with the sentence about supervised visitation. It feels condescending to me.<br><br><i>As we will not engage in name calling, accusations or intimidation tactics, we feel all further communication should be written.<br><br>
In our children's best interests, we are willing to allow you access to them for supervised visitation. Should any negativity, sarcasm or derogatory comments be directed at any member of our family, the visitation will immediately be finished and will not occur again until that behavior ceases. If you would like to set a visitation up, you may contact us through email or by letter.<br><br>
This message will also be sent via mail.</i>
 

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I'm sure I just don't fully understand the details of the situation, but I don't see the need to allow "supervised visitation" -- I'd honestly cut off all ties, I don't think it's healthy for kids to be around someone like that! But if you truly feel it's best for them to have some contact with him, maybe you could just simplify that paragraph to something like, "Email or write to us if you'd like to set up a visit with the kids, DH or I will be present to ensure there is no negativity, sarcasm or derogatory comments directed at any member of our family." Something to that effect?
 

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Discussion Starter #11
The reason for visits is that my oldest is 14. He wants to see his grandpa even though he knows grandpa does things that aren't okay and we want to honor that. If he was younger, I would not even have it as an option. If it is an option for my oldest, it needs to be an option for my other kids.
 

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Ohh OK. I guess then try to leave out the phrase "supervised visits"? But still be very firm & clear about the expectations for these visits? <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/hug.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="hug"> This must be so hard for you.
 
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