My ex husband is making it impossible to co-parent, totally at my wits end.
28 October 2019 at 10:45 am #32121
So in February this year I left my husband, it had been a long time coming, he was constantly lying to me, putting me down, gambling, drinking, just generally not nice to be around and I couldn’t live that way anymore. So I left but from that start I wanted to ensure that our 2 year old daughter was no affected so I asked to keep it friendly /civil. We agreed he would have her 3 days / 2 nights a week.
Now for the past 8 months I have been receiving constant messages asking together back together, telling me he would do anything, promising the world, as he has done many times during our relationship!! He is using our 2 year old daughter as ammunition, telling me i am ripping her world apart, how selfish I am doing this to her. That she is suffering because of me. When he has my daughter he video call me, which i am very much aware is for him to check up where i am and what i am doing, and if i don’t answer i get messages telling me what an awful parent i am not wanting to speak to my daughter. I dread to think what he has been saying to his family / friends. My mum tried to get involved once asking him to get on with his life and let me get on with mine. He just used it to call me every name under the sun, there is just no talking to him at all!! I have tried to make this work so much, begged him to be friends, or civil, been nice, been nasty, blocked all calls / messages, wrote letters. Nothing has worked. He always has been very very manipulative, but the problem is nobody else see’s it, he is very clever in the way that he plays people.
I really don’t know how to deal with this now, I cannot live like this, its really getting me down. But what concerns me most if the affect it is having on my daughter, I know he is trying to use her to get to me, telling her to tell mummy she misses mummy and daddy together. I never speak ill of him to her, i only talk about him in a good way to her. I have no choice but to see him regularly.
Does any have any ideas how i can get through to him, I just want to be a good parent to my daughter?28 October 2019 at 2:39 pm #32129
I don’t think you can get through to him. I do think you need to set some bounderies in place tho. Let him know, via email, that you will no longer be accepting calls from him at all. Be perfectly clear that communicationg from now on will only be via email and will only relate to your child, nothing else at all. He will of course test you on this, it will be something you need to stay strong on by not answering the phone and not responding to any text messages from him (unless of course it is an emergency that involves your daughter) Your child’s world is not been ripped apart. he is just using drama as a way to control you. You are not been an awful mum if you do not speak to your child when he tells you you should do.
It is easy to lose control of a situation when someone is manipulating you left, right and centre but you can bring this back into what is acceptable for you and what works for you rather than being emotionally tossed around by your ex. xx29 October 2019 at 4:37 am #32150
Hi, agree with everything Kath says.
I’d start keeping a diary of his manipulation as well as saving all the messages to a folder. After eight months, that is not normal behaviour. I’d go grey rock and if he still hassles you, I report it all to the police. You shouldn’t need to put up with his nastiness. x1 November 2019 at 9:58 pm #32336
I’ve experienced the same with my ex. You do have to set some boundaries and as Kath mentioned be very clear that you will not accept such behaviour nor you will accept for your daughter to be emotionally abused. I had turned down any communication and he soon realised that he couldn’t get through unless he stopped with the abuse first.10 November 2019 at 10:47 pm #32773
I advise you speak to someone regarding the domestic violence you have experienced and are going on experiencing. If you set boundaries and he breaks them then it is unlawful and you can call the police and have the boundaries set for you.
I went for years without realizing the abuse I suffered and without getting help for it.
His using your daughter is emotionally abusive to her and this can also be confronted.
You don’t and and never did deserve this treatment
Emily11 November 2019 at 12:40 am #32774
You are being a good parent Claire.
I agree with everyone else above, Kath’s suggestion about clearly defined boundaries, and explaining how you will communicate in future is spot on and absolutely your child shouldn’t be caught in the middle of all this. You can then keep a record of any correspondence for future reference should you need any evidence demonstrate abusive behaviour and take legal action if necessary. As for your kid, she may be young but she will be extremely aware of all this and it will affect her so do what you have to ensure this doesn’t happen – just make sure that while she is with you she doesn’t witness anything that is not her burden to carry – be it arguments on phone or letting her see you upset at some text message he’s sent or whatever, just focus on that time you have and make it as good as possible. Some kind of mediation (either professional or voluntary such as a neutral 3rd party) may be needed to try to sort out visitation and I’d focus on this before anything else just so that your child has some kind of routine, as well as you of course.
All the best16 March 2020 at 10:02 pm #37837
Hi there, I am new to this forum and couldn’t help noticing your post.
im so sorry to hear what you are going through and it really resonated with me, I have recently separated from my husband (it’s been 6 weeks) but he is not getting it at all. He messages me, my friends, has been tracking my phone and my WhatsApp activity, and has used my son to find out information from me.
I just wanted to see how you are getting on now? Is there light at the end of the tunnel?22 March 2020 at 12:45 am #38139
Breaking free from an abusive partner is a huge step, but the abuse rarely stops there.
Firstly I’d recommend speaking to someone about the domestic abuse. I got help from Barnardos with a course called ‘Recovery Toolkit’ it gave me a whole new perspective on what had been happening.
Secondly boundaries are needed to protect you from his abuse. I went through similar with my ex. Here’s the boundaries I put in place which you may wish to try:
– I changed my email and set up an auto response from the old one saying no longer in use
– I changed my number.
– I got a cheap pay as go phone (not a smart phone so it won’t accept video or photo just text, old school style) used this for the old number and I only switch that phone on when my child is with dad (usually switch it on the morning of contact time and switch off the minute they are home) expressly for emergency messages/important last minute changes.
– I started using a communication book (you can find info about these online) which travels between homes with child, for messages relating to the child, it’s essentially the child’s book.
It means most of the time I am not available to be abused. He rants to himself in a drawer, I switch the phone on once a week and the messages have no effect on me, they are as irrelevant as he is. Eventually they learn you aren’t even hearing them.
I hope your situation eases xx