Thinking of leaving (suspected) bpd/npd husband..

posted 3 months ago in Married Life
Post # 452
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2186 posts
Buzzing bee

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@tm6173:  “He said that the resentment he felt towards our son (!) had to do with all of the pressure that I was putting on him and that he felt like if he didn’t do something right I was going to freak out or be mad at him so he was just constantly trying to just do everything right to appease me AND then he said that he feels like he is constantly walking on eggshells with me!!” 

Your whole update is pretty troubling – the way he is cutting back on helping shows he’s getting fed up with ‘being good’ because it isn’t getting him what he wants, and telling you he has to walk on eggshells around you is him flipping the whole situation upside down and claiming things are the complete opposite of what they are.  But the thing that worries me the most is his openly commenting about how he feels resentment toward your son.

Dear Bee, please get out as fast as you can.  He’s running out of ‘patience’ at being good AND he’s feeling resentment toward your child.  That’s a scary combination.

You totally can do this.  Don’t let doubts hold you back.  Please get yourself and your kids to safety as soon as you can, because I don’t think you have much time left.  Stay safe xxx

Post # 453
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2733 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: City, State

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@tm6173:   I think going to stay with your parents sounds like a great option for you, given your anxiety and fears over illness/leaving.  Whether you stay there for 6 months or 3 years, you will have a launching point for your new life.  Your parents are supportive and healthy for both you and the kids.  So, just my two cents– if that is what you would like your immediate future to look like, use that as an ending point and aim your efforts in that direction.  

As for the conversation this morning… Um, no. No, it’s not your fault that he has resentment toward his own child.  He has one person to blame for the lack of a bond, and he sees that mug in the mirror on a daily basis.  He is getting to the point that his “helpfulness” and good behavior hasn’t swayed you, so he’s reverting.  He’s started ramping up to attacking you verbally, and I recall that he used to throw things and yell and scream, so it’s coming sooner rather than later.  I know you have a plan in mind for potential escalation– make sure you’ve managed the details so you can leave at a moment’s notice.  

Post # 454
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10223 posts
Sugar Beekeeper
  • Wedding: City, State

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@tm6173:  

Oh, Bee. Claiming full victim status is what they do. Maybe they even perceive themselves as innocent victims. Who knows what’s in the mite-sized brain of an abuser.

Quit taking it personally, Bee. 

Victims are fungible. This is about his pathology, not external reality. My advice is that you stop analyzing his behavior using logic and reason. It won’t work. Focus on what your children need, what you need. Try to shift your focus away from the crap that he hurls.

 

The serious takeaway here is that he is perfectly willing to put his own son in the line of fire to try to regain his control over you. We have been trying to get you to see the danger here. Where will he stop? If he lets one of the kids get injured or worse, do you think he would feel badly? Of course not. It would be all your fault.

 

If you hadn’t upset him, he certainly would not have dropped his son or something equally as horrific.

I would not trust him alone with the kids. They break easily. I have never doubted that he could not care less what damage he does to the kids as long as he can hurt *you* in the process.

 

Send the kids to your parents while you try to figure things out.

Post # 455
Member
2101 posts
Buzzing bee

He’s doing what abusers do. He’s refusing to take responsibility for his behavior and the consequences of any of it, as well as twisting every conversation and event around to make his victim look guilty and himself as the victim. He’s also using therapy in the classic way that abusers do: he’s stocking up on all the hot vocabulary to make his accusations sound more credible. It’s the standard DARVO approach, new and improved with the latest terminology from the frontier of psychology! Abusers the world over are learning the benefits to throwing money into therapy sessions so they adopt and refine this technique. I’m not sure if your therapist has covered this, but the DARVO pathway is important to keep in mind always with your husband’s behavior. DARVO is an acronym for Deny, Attack, and Reverse the roles of Victim and Offender. Your husband is doing this to you daily, with greater and greater mastery now he’s studying up on abuse and relationship psychology. His gaslighting has never been in better form. He’s denying wrongdoing, he’s attacking you every chance he gets to accuse you of being the guilty one and painting himself as the victim. It’s classic strategy for a manipulative abuser and they never tire of it–they only get better at it.

As if this isn’t bad enough, he’s abandoned his Mr. Nice Guy routine and has now switched gears to Mr. Innocent Victim. Mr. Innocent Victim may start with the motions of being helpful and nice but will frequently throw tantrums to get out of doing what he didn’t want to do in the first place, or will throw a tantrum afterwards using his “generous helpfulness” as an attack tool and opportunity for victim crying. Unlike Mr. Nice Guy, Mr. Innocent Victim can get angry because victims get angry about the abuse they’ve experienced. They can act irrationally because, “how am I supposed to hold it together all the time when YOU are cruelly criticizing me and acting like I can’t do anything right!”🎻 They can rage and say, “It’s because YOU keep treating me so badly and I can’t take it anymore!” Sounds like the words straight from a victim’s mouth, right? In his mind he is hard at work pulling every word, every moment into his reshaping of events, his portrait that warps reality. But it’s not because he’s mistaken or crazy. It’s all for a purpose. He refuses to accept any responsibility for wrong doing. If he momentarily admits to doing something that is wrong, he’ll follow it up with the explanation of how he isn’t to blame for it because he was helplessly reacting to your greater wrongdoing and so YOU’RE to blame. He will bear down now on his gaslighting to undermine your confidence, confuse you and scare you.

It’s so important to see the difference between Mr. Nice Guy (who going forward will only appear briefly when an audience is present) and Mr. Innocent Victim. Since Mr. Innocent Victim is allowed to get angry, he can go right back to his abusive habits again. A perfect example was the night he wanted the two of you to talk about how you feel about each other. You didn’t want to participate because you knew it would be a disaster, so he said, “You don’t have to say anything, just listen.” He rubbed your arm and bombed you with fake words of love and then broke his promise and pushed you to tell him how you feel. As if you could be honest?!! You quietly reminded him of what you’d said from the beginning: that you didn’t want to talk about that, and what did he do? He raged! He said, “You never fucking tell me how you feel!” What a perfectly set trap! He forced his love bombing on you and then verbal abuse too, which surely he’d been missing indulging in.

The abuse is back on and the anger from him is escalating. This is what we have been expecting. There will be more escalating. He is a ticking bomb. We’re all concerned, knowing it’s imminent that his rage snaps and terrible things happen.

I know this has been a lot to process and there’s been a lot for you to juggle. But how about one step forward at a time? You’ve decided which attorney you prefer. How about taking that next step by paying the retainer to have her on the ready. If something happens quickly, and I think this is inevitable and not just an “if”, she will act quickly when you need her. You don’t want to be in a situation where you’re in the middle of a disaster and you get, “Ms. Attorney can meet with you at her next available appointment time which is next week.” You need someone who is ready to help you. Pay the retainer and get her to help you put a plan together for you to move out. This can’t happen quickly enough. Things are escalating quickly at home. Please, please, please you’ve got to get out of there.

You said in an earlier update that you plan to spend the holidays together and moving out wouldn’t happen until afterwards. I said before that I’m concerned for your safety. I’m even more concerned.  He is bearing down hard on the gaslighting, picking fights, ranting and villifying you. He is also hard at work to make you scared–afraid to do things on your own, afraid of him, afraid of leaving him. He knows just how to scare you and intimidate you and it’s been working. His head games and attacks send you right back into doubting yourself. It’s what he wants and he’s good at it. He’ll continue with his attacks and he’s ramping them up. No one is benefitting from you staying–not you, not the kids. Although, it does benefit him. Every day is another round of him screwing with your head, shouting at you, falsely accusing you of artfully crafted DARVO trash, and intimidating you. Please at least pay the retainer and get your attorney on your side to help you with your exit. Take that one step, which will be such a huge safety net for you for when, not if, this gets nasty and truly scary.

Post # 456
Member
3974 posts
Honey bee

Bee, those of us who have been following along since the beginning know how much things have progressed. You’ve gone from being in denial to making plans for your exit. Keep fighting the good fight. We are here for you and listening.

Post # 457
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10223 posts
Sugar Beekeeper
  • Wedding: City, State

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@gimmepretty:  

Yes! And horrible people get more horrible during the holidays. Any cop will tell you tha DV calls shoot up at this time of year.

He will have an excuse–OP so cruelly RUINED Christmas for the faaaaammmmmmiiiiilllly.

Post # 458
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10223 posts
Sugar Beekeeper
  • Wedding: City, State

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@tm6173:  

Btw, Bee. I don’t recall whether this has been addressed. Does he keep firearms? If so, I plead with you to remove them when he is not around. The safest course is to give them to your local PD with a full explanation.

His current trajectory, the ease with which he hurts his own children, combined with the holidays have me very worried.

Post # 459
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2457 posts
Buzzing bee

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@gimmepretty:  So, I just want you to know that you are amazing. I find it so hard to put into words EXACTLY what is happening here since the husband’s actions feel so familiar to me and it’s triggering, and you just nailed it, and you have been nailing it right from the start. I have been terrified for this woman, and I’m having trouble expaining exactly why I know without doubt that she’s in incredible danger. Thank you for putting it into words that truly explain how a person is able to rationalize and justify abusing another person and especially in this situation. It’s one thing to say “I personally recognize this behavior, have experienced it, and what happened to me may happen to you,” because it’s SO easy to dismiss. It’s quite another to be able to break down the actual conversations and actions, and follow the process of escalation right up to the difference in attitude change from the abuser which is so clear to see. I know you wrote this for the OP but reading this really helped me too, so thank you. 

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@sassy411:  I actually have to say I was very concerned hearing that she was going to stay for the holidays, because things always got worse during those times. Holidays can be stressful and because there are people around abusers have to play nice, so what happens is that he will focus on and ruminate continuously over one small event all day and as soon as you are alone, he’ll blow up.

We had a ton of holidays were there were abusive episodes immediately afterward. One holiday I ended up calling the police because…my little sister made my grandma a Christmas card. 

I actually think the holidays would be a perfect time to leave. He would be expecting you to visit your family, he would be expecting you to be packing stuff up and getting things ready. He would be expecting you to be getting presents and wrapping them. You could literally wrap up your children’s things in present form and take them to your mothers and say you were just dropping off gifts early for the holidays. You could go to the thrift store, buy a huge cheap stuffed animal or something, say it’s a present and get a big box and instead pack it with their things and he’d be none the wiser. You could say your mom needs to some help setting up for a work party a bit before christmas and go the weekend before to help cook dishes and take the kids and just not come back. There are options here. 

Post # 460
Member
6023 posts
Bee Keeper

OP, I’m concerned for your safety and that of your children. While you have been to see a lawyer and have told your husband that you want to leave, you have not made any progress toward doing so. I sense that despite your stated desire to leave him, there is a strong need within you to stay with him, for whatever reason. You could pack up and go when he is not at home. You could enlist help. But you’re not doing this, and the people cheering you on are all well and good, but they’re missing the larger picture. The fact is that the longer you remain, the greater your chances of a dangerous situation. Adding the stress of the holidays to that makes the risk even greater in my opinion. 

To others, please don’t go on about how I’m being hard on the OP and ignoring all she’s done so far. You’re not going to change my opinion one iota. 

Post # 464
Member
2457 posts
Buzzing bee

Oh I’m so, so sorry to hear about your son and I hope he has a mild case and recovers quickly. We’ll be thinking of you here. 

I am so glad to hear you are thinking positively about the future, and I’m glad you are starting to truly realize that this isn’t your fault. Your fault is in trusting and loving someone. His fault is in taking advantage of, manipulating, and betraying that love and trust. 

But when you finally get free of it, it’s like you can finally breathe again. You don’t have to adjust your expressions, your words, your actions all the time…you don’t have to alter your lifestyle based around making someone angry. You aren’t constantly waiting and dreading and fearing. You start to realize that you were always tensing up and your body is relaxing more, you sleep better, you feel more focused and just more YOU. I’m so happy you are hopeful for the future, because there IS an amazing and bright future out there for you. 

Post # 465
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2186 posts
Buzzing bee

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@tm6173:  “He was referring to when my son was an infant, like a few months old to 9 months or so. He’s 14 months old now.”

Like there’s a difference between a father resenting his 9 month old son and a father resenting his 14 month old son?

Sorry, not buying it.  The fact that he could refer to that resentment at all is deeply troubling.  And while you say you are not sticking up for him, that is just what you are doing by trying to explain away that it was when your son was ‘an infant’ (he still is) and that your husband is still being ‘mostly helpful’.

Dear Bee, I don’t say this to be mean, but to try and show you how you are still trying to excuse your OHs behaviour, even when you don’t realise that is what you are doing.  Being ‘mostly helpful’ isn’t wonderful – it’s not even the bare minimum you should expect from your co-parent.  And whether he felt resentment toward your son 5 months ago or still feels it, the fact that he feels comfortable talking about feeling resentment toward his own very young child (and comfortable blaming it on you) is terrible.

This is in no way, shape or form behaviour of a normal husband and father, and you need to keep reminding yourself of that.

I hope your little one recovers fast xxx

Post # 466
Member
10223 posts
Sugar Beekeeper
  • Wedding: City, State

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@tm6173:  

Before I left my abusive ex, I too, found myself driven to explain him to people. I had to make them understand the whole picture.

It was nothing more than my clutching onto my denial. The unstated purpose of all that explaining was to maintain my fantasy that it really wasn’t all that bad. He’s not like those terrible abuser dudes.

I took a stress management class taught by my yoga instructor. Our assignment was to keep a stress journal and we would share what we wrote in class.

Mine was full of the ex’s atrocities. There I was, reading aloud the crap that came out of his mouth and the entire group sat silently, shaking their heads in unison.

When I was done, there was a chorus of: Nooooooo!

That became the bell that could not be un-rung.

  • This reply was modified 1 week, 1 day ago by sassy411.
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