Guilty + angry + afraid sounds like par for the course when suffering from ongoing domestic abuse. And it's really OK not to know what to do, or to be afraid to leave. I asked that question just to get you thinking. Everyone has their needs and their tolerance level, and I am sure you'll come to the best decision for you. Just keep in mind that you can change your mind - you can decide to stay for now and then decide to leave later. Or you can decide you've had enough and get ready to go ASAP.
Have you ever called a DV hotline? It can be a very good place to work things through, as you can remain anonymous completely, and people can't see you so you can have some privacy. It can be a good place to start. Also, it can help a lot to start reading books/articles about domestic abuse so you can educate yourself and get some perspective on what's going on. Lundy Bancroft's book, "Why does he DO that?" is a great place to start, as he does a great job of describing abusive personalities and the strategies they use to keep you confused and intimidated and self-doubting. If you feel too worried about him finding a book around, just look up articles on line using "incognito windows" or erase your history. These are steps that don't require a drastic move, but can get you starting to think about what you want instead of always being in survival mode.
Bottom line, he's not going to change, except possibly to get worse, and I think you see that now. Only you can decide if what you get out of the relationship is worth putting up with that kind of fear and pain. We'll be here for you either way.
My husband had his initial court appearance yesterday. He plead not guilty and he's sticking to his story. And he's already out. The judge gave him the maximum bail for a misdemeanor too. But he only had to come up with 10%. We had plenty of savings so I really shouldn't be surprised. But it's still shocking. One night in jail. And it's only a misdemeanor. Too bad he didn't break any bones so he could have been charged with a felony. It seems so unfair. I'm laying in a hospital room still with narcotic pain medication pumping through my veins and he's out there free. I was talking to one of the nurses...she told me she's been where I am. I told her i don't remember all that happened but what my husband said happened. She's been trying to assure me that no judge is going to believe that story. She told me her ex broke her arm and her wrist at the same time and told the judge she tripped over one of the kids toys, and the judge laughed at him and gave him a year in jail. She actually asked me where he's saying I fell from, and if I landed on a pile of jagged rocks because she saw me when I first came in and there's no way this happened from passing out. She apologizedfor saying it but it didn't bother me. She was right.
My sister started bringing me meals yesterday and I did okay until dinner, but I'm happy to say that today I kept all 3 down. They said they'd like me to stay an extra day so that I can stay on the IV meds and meet with the mental health counselor, but they will release me in the morning if I feel ready. My initial reaction was hell no to the mental health counselor but I tried to remember that they're just trying to help. It's hard for me but I'm trying. I don't feel ready to go honestly, especially with him just being released. I know, a couple of days ago I couldn't wait to get out but they really have been good to me here. I'm still in a lot of pain, I can't even find a comfortable position. Since I can't tell him what happened the doctor also wants me to have an MRI of my back which I can do here or through my regular doctor. So I will probably just stay.
That sucks that he got out so fast but I am glad you are not around and safe in a hospital. I would stay, honestly. Now is a really sensitive time because he has lost control. Reach out to the hotline for tips on staying safe and your next steps. Best wishes
Hey Samantha, hope you are doing ok today. Mental Health counselors are there to help. They want to give you an opportunity to talk and to see if you need information or resources to connect you with. They probably want to see if you are having any other issues.
I too am really sorry he is out and free so quickly. It doesn't seem right. He has gotten away with 10 years of abuse and that is what he needs to pay for. The good thing is he has a record now, if he continues to bother you, things will be added to that record.
I am happy for you that you are able to eat better. That is taking good care of you. You matter, helping yourself to be strong and healthy, that is what will help you to begin healing. I am glad you decided to stay at the hospital a little longer. The MRI is probably a good idea too, it will make sure no other damage has been done that they can't see on an x-ray. Lean on the hospital for a bit, get as much rest as you can and nutrients to help you heal.
I want to think he will stay away from you, but I suspect he may not. As anonymama suggested, maybe calling the hotline again and figuring out a good way to stay safe at this point. Also, perhaps they can give legal advice given that he cut off your access to your bank accounts. In my state, it is a "50/50" state, which means that any property of a married couple is considered half of each. So, you have a right to that money and your savings.
I hope you are feeling better and hurting less. Going forward can be the tough part at this point, we will support you in any way we can!
Hi Karen, I'm ok. The pain isn't quite as bad today. They switched me to different medication which seems to be working better. I at least have an explanation now. The MRI showed a rhomboid muscle tear, and a posterior rib fracture which the x-ray missed. Unfortunately there's nothing they can do about either, except wait for them to heal on their own. But guess I got my wish. It's a felony now. And it's just more proof that his story doesn't add up. The prosecutor's office has been notified and tomorrow we find out if they are going to upgrade the charges. If they do, he'll probably accept a plea deal and plead guilty to a misdemeanor. However, it means I'm less likely to have to endure a trial. My advocate said most defendants will do anything they can to avoid a felony trial. I have been really worried that my husband would let this go to trial just so he could try to destroy me. He told me so many times that if I ever tried to divorce him, he'd paint me as a crazy, alcoholic gold-digger. Mind you, before I quit my job, I made nearly the same amount as he did, and we are far from rich. I can't imagine what he'd do at trial though, especially since I already admitted to the police that I was blackout drunk that night.
I think it's all hitting me, now that he's out. I had a bunch of nightmares last night and I haven't been able to eat much today either which the doctor wasn't happy about but at least I'm not throwing it up. I haven't been sleeping well at all, not since I got here and I think it's really catching up to me. I feel really on edge and the smallest noises are making me jump. When they've come in to examine me today, it's all I could do to hold it together. Just being touched, I can't stand it. That male nurse, the one who was watching me eat that 2nd day, came in this afternoon, asked how I was feeling and his hand brushed my arm. It startled me and I lost it emotionally. Just started crying. I talked with the mental health counselor today and she said it's most likely symptoms of PTSD. I realized something else talking to her, which I couldn't admit, not even to myself. It's true what you said. I was trying to die. It's still hard to acknowledge. At first I thought, I wasn't consciously trying to kill myself, I just knew that not eating would eventually kill me and I was okay with it. But I realized that many of the times I chose not to eat even when I knew I should, it was because I was trying to speed up the process. I wanted it to be over. I'm still not sure what's ahead of me, I still can't imagine my future, and I still don't know if all of this is worth it but I'm willing to give it a try, for me, and for my family. I'm getting out of here on Friday morning but I'm going into a shelter for a few days just to rest some more and to not worry about him showing up. He knows where all of my family and friends live.. I won't lie, I'm really scared. But I don't think it matters how long I stay in the hospital, I'm going to be.
Good news, they are upgrading the charges to a felony.
Bad news, he's not going to leave me alone. My mom already found a note on her door when she got home this afternoon. It was typed out and it said,"NO RESPECT. NONE." It's I know it was him or someone he knows trying to scare me. It's kind of a long story but that was something he would say to me. My mom reported it but there's not much they can do unless someone steps forward as a witness except keep it on record.
Hi Samantha, sounds like a lot has happened in the last day or so. Lots to process I am sure!
I believe it is him trying to scare you. He will do whatever he can that keeps him from it pointing to him, but we all know 100% it is him.No doubt he would say something like that to you, he demands respect yet he shows none to you. Asshole. Perhaps getting cameras and having them installed outside your mother's house? It may be an investment to have a way to gather evidence against him. I urge you, when you are ready, to invest in pepper spray and perhaps even mace. I know you are scared and you have every reason to be scared. I am glad you are going into a shelter for a while. It will keep you hidden for a while until he chills, or at least I hope he chills. I am glad it is a felony charge (not glad that you are hurting..please don't think I am glad you have a broken bone), the charge should be attempted murder..put his ass in jail for a long while.
Please don't blame yourself about being drunk. Drunk or not, you don't deserve to be beaten to a pulp and you didn't cause him to beat you to a pulp. I hope someday he gets what he deserves and that is the crap beat out of him.
I too suspected that you have PTSD, it makes sense. You have been traumatized and the nightmares and sensitivity to being touched are all symptoms related to that. I am glad you got to talk to a mental health counselor today, it sounds like you are opening up some and talking a little about what has happened. Baby steps, it takes baby steps sometimes, but we get there. You are not throwing up and that a HUGE! It is a big positive, so feel good that something is going right! We have to celebrate those little victories, because they do add up!
You said you weren't sure if this is all worth it. I can't determine that for you, I know there will be days where you are wondering if going back is easier is than staying away. I know it is very hard to believe that things will get better, or that it will be worth it. I can tell you, I never thought things were ever going to be good again after all I had experienced with an ex-husband and ex-boyfriend. I cried like I have never cried before in my whole life over all that happened. I couldn't see that light at the end of the very dark tunnel I felt like I was in. BUT eventually, I started to see a little bit of the light shining. I started to learn that it would be OK.
Samantha, you do not deserve to be abused and beaten and thrown away like trash. You see what this guy has done to you...he beat you up. HE WILL NEVER CHANGE..he is not worth your time, your love, your energy. HE IS WORTH LESS. And I know you still have a "love" for him, but this isn't LOVE. Love is not someone beating the crap out of you and saying "Oh, I am sorry, I didn't mean it". Hell he didn't mean it. IT IS ABUSE..and it is sickening and incredibly wrong. At some point, those feelings you have may change to rage..RAGE..that this monster continues to think he has a right to do what he has done and what he continues to do. He will continue to abuse you, and he could kill you. I for one, believe that staying away is so WORTH it. That you deserve to be happy, you deserve to be carefree and having a fun time in life. He does not love you..he only loves himself. EVERYTHING he does is ABUSIVE..even the stuff where he is trying to talk to you and make you understand.
I'm good. Better. The shelter had someone come in on emergency yesterday so I wasn't able to get in today but they will have a room for me in a couple of days. I was released from the hospital this morning and am staying in a hotel in the mean time. I don't feel safe staying at any of my family or friends' houses because he knows where they all live. My sister is staying with me here though. She even got a rental car in case he's driving around looking, he won't see my car or hers parked outside of here.
It's been hard to sleep though. Near impossible really. There are too many noises outside. Even the quiet hum of traffic is nervewracking. But I'll get through it.
I'll tell you some good news, I put on 3 pounds in the hospital. I don't know how, I don't even feel like I was eating that much, but that's what the scale said just before I checked out. My doctor was impressed, he said most people lose weight in the hospital. I'm still eating my sister's food and I'm actually starting to look forward to it.
I want to share something else. I saw the counselor again today before I checked out. I wish I could continue seeing her but I think she's available only to hospital patients. She's just so easy to talk to. We talked about that note my husband left on my mom's door. The story behind it. I didn't think I could do it. I've never EVER talked about it. I don't mean just in specifics, but I've never shared the level of mental torture he inflicted. But I don't know, she made me feel like it was safe. Does that make any sense? I typed all this out earlier today, and it took me 2 hours and about a gallon of tears but I managed to do it.
One night a few years ago, my husband was laying into me, really bad about having too much to drink after a night out. Some of his co-workers had been there and he was accusing me of embarrassing him. Funny thing was, I don't remember being more than mildly tipsy. I was completely coherent and other friends told me later they didn't notice anything off about me. But he was convinced I was drunk and going off on me for a good half hour to 45 minutes about it and I was exhausted and just wanted to sleep. I was so angry and frustrated I told him he was being paranoid and he was the only one who thought I had too much to drink and basically to leave me the hell alone. I knew I'd pay for it but I didn't care at the time. Within seconds he had me face down with my arms pulled behind my back and his knee in my kidneys and he said, "You know what I think our problem is? NO RESPECT. NONE."<--(There it is. I'll never forget those words). Then pulled his belt off and he showed it to me and told me that he thought I just needed a lesson in respect. He said, "Don't you agree? A good lesson in respect would do wonders. You want this marriage to work, don't you? No pain, no gain, right?" And then he laughed. He LAUGHED. I had to apologize to him over and over again and promise I'd try harder to show him respect. It was terrifying, and soul-crushing, and he enjoyed every second of it. He repeated the same torture a half dozen more times over the years. And each time it would go on longer. The last time it happened was just about a month ago. It went on for more than an hour. He was whipping the belt through the air, slamming it onto the bed hard, right next to me, twisting my arms, trying to get me to "agree". I finally agreed, just to get it over with, just to make it all STOP. But he didn't do it. He never in all those times actually hit me with the belt. It was a game for him. So later when he'd reach for me and I'd jump, he could say, "What the hell is wrong with you? What are you afraid of? Have I ever hit you?" And somehow, leave me feeling like I was the batshit crazy one.
I can't believe I got all of that down. That's progress I think. I made an appointment with one of the therapists she recommended, but I'll be honest. I don't know how I'm supposed to even begin to process or get through things like that.
Hi Samantha, first..YAY YOU! Gaining weight and looking forward to food!!! That is really a reason to celebrate..maybe treat yourself to ice cream or a milkshake! Treating ourselves and celebrating those small moments of joy and success..that is what it is all about. Because, the abusers took those moments away, they hated the small joys because it wasn't about them. You deserve every single happy thing that comes your way! The hotel and rental car...2 very good ideas and sleeping is hard..so very hard.
One thing that may help is perhaps find some music or something soothing to help you sleep. I know I listen to Pandora Radio on my computer, I have it on an app or something like that and it has so many different types of music, like the ocean waves, or a gentle rain, or music like you would hear in a yoga class. I listen to that to help me meditate and to then fall asleep. It is very relaxing. It puts my mind to something else. I also have a cd that I instantly fall asleep to as my brain must be trained to sleep as soon as I hear it. It reminds of me good times in my life, it brings me comfort if that makes sense. It will take time, your brain and body are on high alert and even if we start to relax, we tend to startle very easy at the thought of "if I relax and something happens..oh no. So I can't relax". It is like we can't even trust feeling safe. It is part of PTSD also, it can take time to work through it. The shelter sounds like a really good idea. I hope the room comes through soon.
So glad you feel safe to share your story. That counselor is a good one. Anyone who can make us feel safe enough to share our deepest darkest secrets and horrors, is a good counselor. Maybe check with her and see if she does any private practice on the outside of the hospital? Sometimes counselors do. I have a few friends who work a full time day job and have a few clients they see in the evenings. If nothing else, make a note to yourself about how she helped you to feel, that feeling of being safe enough to talk out your thoughts. That feeling is the one that you may want to have going forward when in counselling. If the counselor you are assigned to doesn't bring out that feeling, then maybe that isn't the best counselor for you. I had that feeling with my counselor at the DV center in my town. She was so great and I often think of her, if I need to go back, I know I can.
That horror he inflicted on you is wrong in so many ways. Thank you for sharing, I know it took a lot of courage and strength for you to put that on paper so to speak. I an see why that note triggered you..it was obviously him. That is your gut, your inner voice telling you the truth. He is sick and a sociopath. You are not the batshit crazy one..he is. Everything he did to you is abuse and horrific. Karma..I so hope he gets what is coming to him.
It is HUGE progress that you were able to share all this. HUGE!! Here is an idea..if you can't talk it out loud to the counselor..then take your computer with you to the appointment and write it out so she can see it. Speaking the words out loud..it makes it real. It brings the reality to us full force that we have been abused, that someone whom we trusted and loved and gave ourselves too, violated us in the worst possible way. Making it real...very hard..it gives me chills when I think about the day I realized what was happening in my life. I cried so hard and in front of my therapist which was very difficult for me to do, I don't like crying in front of anyone. So, maybe think about what you have written here and read it to your counselor when you feel ready. We all need to feel safe, we need to know that the people we are opening up to are not going to devastate us and hurt us worse. You will know in your gut if the counselor you are assigned to is someone you can do this with. And.if you don't feel safe, you can share that too. You are the "customer"..you can choose who you speak to and they have many counselors at these centers that you can speak to. They can't force you to have a good relationship with a counselor.
AND..one other thought, what worked for me, is take your time with the counselor. It took years for all this bad stuff to happen, it will take a while to work through it. I went to counselling for over a year, then took several months off and ended up going back for 6 more months(when I lost my job and experienced abuse by one of my superiors at work). It is a journey..and that journey will have ups and downs and curves. "Trust Your Journey"..one of my favorite sayings. There is a website BTW that sells medallions that say that. Mine hangs from the mirror in my car..it carries me through a lot of tough times. I am still on a "Journey".
But it takes time, you are doing so great Samantha..you really are! Take care of you..and Kudos to your sister, she sounds like a great person to have by your side. I have one of those too..love them!
So happy to see your enormous progress! There is a great book called Trauma and Recovery that addresses healing from trauma. Your husband psychologically tortured you. That is terrible. Anyway, the first step in healing is establishing safety and self care. The second step is addressing the trauma. I know it feels great to be able to share your experience, and I encourage you to continue to assess and maintain your safety.
I hate that you are still in a scary situation. But this is a new, better kind of fear. It is the fear from a safe place, and that is the biggest and best thing.
I am no lawyer or detective, but as you relay the experience it is obvious that he did it. And I hope that further strengthens your case on court. Is the hotel aware you are not to have visitors?
Some good news, I was able to get in touch with the counselor from the hospital and she said she'll see me after hours, in the evenings. I'm in the shelter now and she said she'd even come to me. We also got a court order for my husband to release half of the money that was in the bank on the day I went into the hospital. He has 7 days from yesterday to comply so I'll be able to pay her soon. She originally offered to do it for free but we finally settled on half her normal fee. She was amazing at the hospital and I wouldn't feel right paying her nothing. It's such a relief knowing I don't have to go searching. I have my first appointment on Friday night.
I am really having a hard time. I feel like I'm losing it. The people at the shelter are great, it's not that. Since I wrote out all of that stuff from my last post, I haven't slept more than 2 hours at a time. I've been having nightmares, very vivid and realistic ones. It's like I'm reliving it all over again, I'm in our house, in our bed. I don't see his face because I avoided looking at him when he was attacking me, but his hands are exactly how I remember them, his voice is so clear, and I wake up crying and shaking and in a cold sweat. I'm afraid to close my eyes. And then this morning it got even scarier. I was having the nightmare again and during it I sat up and my roommate thought I was awake but I kept talking like I was talking to my husband, I was begging him to stop, and she tried to wake me but she couldn't. She ran out and brought back the counselor and when the counselor touched my arms, I woke up but I thought she was him, they said for a good minute, and I completely melted down crying and screaming no no no no. I remember it vividly, but it was his face I saw, not hers. It was so humiliating, my only thought was that I'm going crazy and now they know I'm crazy, I'll be known as the crazy lady at the shelter. The counselor talked with me later and tried to assure me that what happened is due to PTSD and that I am not having a psychotic break or losing my mind. I'm not so sure. I've never experienced anything like that in my life. Friday can't come fast enough.
Hey Samantha, I am really glad you are safe at the shelter and , WOW..that counselor is so great to reach out and help you like she is doing! So good! It is so nice to have someone you can be safe with, someone who will help you work through this!
PTSD is a really tough disorder to get through, but one that with a good counselor (like you have) and time and self care, it can be treated. You are not crazy, you will not be known as the crazy lady. Sadly, I am sure you are not the first to go through this and you will not be the last. I know you feel crazy..really you are far from it. You have been severely traumatized and your brain and body are trying to make sense of it. Please don't beat yourself up, you are not the cause of all that happened, your crap husband is the problem here.
Be kind to yourself, you are right, you haven't experienced anything like this before, the trauma was horrific and it will take some time to get through this. But, from where I sit, I think you are so strong and so brave and on the right path for you! Trust Your Journey..it will lead you to a good place. Sleep when you can, and maybe when you talk to your counselor on Friday, ask her about some tips to help you sleep maybe? Being sleep deprived is really hard on our brain and body.
I am thinking of you Samantha, my wish is you can find some peace and some restful sleep! So glad you are safe! Looking forward to Friday for you too!
Someone, 2 guys actually, assaulted my husband last night, outside a bar. The police informed me. I guess they did a number on him. But he says he doesn't know who it was and no one else is talking. They didn't really question me too much. They just asked if I had any idea who might have done it or who might have wanted to hurt him. I imagine that's a lot of people. My best friend told my mom that people are finding out and they are NOT taking his side like he told me they would. Even my sister-in-law has sent me a message via my mom that she's on my side in this. On top of that, a mutual friend of ours reported to the police a couple of days ago that my husband has been asking around about me. He's been telling them that I got angry at him and took off and he just wants to be sure I'm okay because, well me and MY temper, he says he's sure I just need time to cool off. The police took the report but they didn't pick him up! And we've had to file a restraining order for my mom because she keeps seeing him parked across the street from her house. My nephew is coming down to stay with her for a while.
I don't know how he's not in jail. How is this supposed to work? What does he have to do?
I’m glad you’re still safe! It seems like the more people who know not to let him around you, the better. I can’t say I’m sorry he got beat up, honestly. Keep pushing girl. Looks like he will find himself in jail soon enough and then you will have more peace. Meanwhile just focus on safety and self care. You got this!
Hey Samantha, WOW..KARMA..is the word that comes to my mind. One thing that makes me laugh is how they "think" that everyone will think we are the crazy ones, that some how we just need to cool down. I love how he is "just making sure you are ok"..BS. He wants to paint a picture of the concerned husband. NO HE IS NOT. He is trying to deflect the suspicion off of him. Sounds like you have a lot of smart friends who know better.
I remember when I started to tell people about my ex-husband, many of our common friends were not surprised. What hurt the most for me was my in-laws. They support their own..no matter what. They have since learned what he is really like and recently I heard they completely understood why I left. I think initially they felt sorry for him..but that was his MO when it came to abuse..he played a "victim" role and played it VERY WELL. I don't think I will ever be close to them again, they told me at one time they would stand by me and they lied because they didn't. But..it is their loss in my eyes.
I am not sure what he has to do, I suspect he has to violate the restraining order that you have and if your Mother gets one, then if he continues to sit outside the house, she can call and he will be picked up. Your mom will have to call every single time he parks out there. I have never had a restraining order against the exes, so I am not sure. I do know, you can't call enough. He keeps breaking it, they will pick him up with enough reports.
I am glad you are doing ok and you are safe! Keep focusing on you!