Finally reached the breaking point

iVillage Member
Registered: 01-27-2014
Finally reached the breaking point
Mon, 01-27-2014 - 2:59pm

I've been lurking on the boards for quite a while and am finally posting.  I've been married for almost 18 years to a very controlling-type personality husband.   We have two children (middle school and high school) who are being directly affected now, which gives me the courage to leave.  My husband has always had anger issues.  It actually broke us up several years ago when the kids were little.  We went through counseling and got back together.  Things were fine for a while, but have steadily worsened.  He complains and screams and yells if things in the house aren't "Martha Stewart perfect," to the point where he will run his finger across something and blow up if I missed something.  He constantly screams at our children, threatening to whip them with the belt (daughter is 12, son is 15).  I'm constantly running interference.  If I speak up for them, he says "You are not in this conversation, do not interrupt me in my house."  He is a slob, but he blames the rest of the family for the messes.  I know a clean house sounds petty, but I honest to God do my best.  Between working full-time, plus all the duties of raising kids (homework, band, soccer, etc), plus the household (laundry, cleaning, cooking, paying the bills), all of you I'm sure know what I mean...I do the best I can.  He always finds something.

He also is very unwilling to let me spend time with my family.  Gets aggravated when I talk to anyone on the phone.  Also, he has alienated me from nearly all of my friends (who have seen his outbursts) and they won't invite us over as couples anymore.  If I meet my friends for lunch, it infuriates him.  And he doesn't understand why sex doesn't appeal to me anymore...he doesn't understand why I don't want to sleep with him when all he does is yell at me.  If I call him on the phone, he gets aggravated and tells me I'm bothering him.  But if HIS friends call him, he'll talk forever.

Yesterday, I was cooking breakfast and my daughter was helping me.  He came in and started yelling at her (threatening her with the belt) because of something minor (can't remember if it was feeding the animals or putting something away...).  I again defended her and then it started.  He was literally yelling at me in my face...I kept asking him to get out of my face and he would reply that he was three feet away and wasn't in my face.  Basically told me I had no rights regarding his parenting in his house (he keeps forgetting that I am a parent who is also on the mortgage).  It escalated into me telling him that I thought he was being a bully and he had anger issues (to which he replied, "I don't have anger issues since I've never hit you").  Really?  I told him I just couldn't live like this anymore and if he didn't want to go back to counseling, I had no option but to live somewhere else.  He said, "Fine, Go!" He told me to leave the leave the "premises" because he didn't want to see my face the rest of the day.  He proceeded to call the kids together and tell them that I was "quitting" the family, and was going to take them away and they wouldn't get to see him anymore because he was "a mean old Daddy."  He told them I was a quitter no less than a dozen times.  My daughter was so mad, she ran outside.  I followed her and when I got outside, he followed us out.  He ran to her and (she tells me) he told her that he was sorry he was such a bad daddy, but it's mommy's fault and she was a quitter.  He then hugged her.  She told me later that was the first time he's hugged her in a really long time.  

I take her to a friend's house to play and my son and I go off for the day - walking around the mall...just getting out.  When we got home, the husband was furious.  He told me to make a decision and leave right them or he would throw all my stuff outside.  I told him that I wasn't going anywhere without the kids and if he didn't want to look at me he could go somewhere for a couple of days.  He then told me he changed the passwords on the checking account and took over the bill paying on the computer.  Fine, whatever.  But did I mention that he isn't working?  He has a firewood business that has done okay but isn't a huge source of income throughout the entire year.  My paycheck is deposited into that checking account and we pay all the bills out of it.  So he basically cut me off from my paycheck.  Luckily, next week I will have the money deposited into my account, but as far as this week's check, I can't even touch it.  When I left for work this morning, he told me I better have a place to live and not to be surprised if all my stuff was in the back yard.

I've been checking on rentals nearby and have a couple of good leads, but other than going back to the house to deal with him, that's it for me for now.  I'd go crazy myself if it weren't for the kids.  At least they are both old enough to know what is really going on, but that doesn't make me feel better.    Sorry for how long this is.  I'm sure I left stuff out, but I just wanted to put something out there.  I just really want to know what advice I need from some of you who have been through this.  How do I handle the actual moving out?  Who needs to be there when I'm packing and loading stuff?  I'm just feel like my head is spinning in all directions right now and I can't think very clearly.

Avatar for sabrtooth
iVillage Member
Registered: 12-03-1999
Mon, 01-27-2014 - 3:53pm

Do NOT leave.  Possession is 9/10th of the law.  Go to the bank in person, with your state issued ID, and withdraw your money from the bank.  Cancel direct deposit, if you have it.  Open a new account in YOUR NAME ONLY.  Put your money there.  Call a lawyer, and after you have discussed things with a lawyer, call the police and tell them you and the children were physically threatened, you want him removed from the house, and an order of protection entered, so he CANNOT come near the house.  Proceed with divorce.  Good luck.

iVillage Member
Registered: 11-28-1999
Mon, 01-27-2014 - 9:48pm

I'm a divorce lawyer and I agree 100% with what Sabrtooth said.  Do not leave.  Go see a lawyer right away and see if you can qualify for a restraining order.  Even though he hasn't threatened you, he has threatened physical violence against teenage kids so you also might be able to get a RO on their behalf.  Do not let him take your money--if the bank acct. is in your name, you can get access to it through the bank.  Call a domestic violence hotline and ask for advice--your DH is an abuser even though he hasn't hit you (yet)--you don't know, he might get violent if you try to get him to leave.  Good luck and come back & tell us if you are able to get him out.  Your story makes me sad for what you are going through.

iVillage Member
Registered: 05-20-2009
Tue, 01-28-2014 - 12:09am

I agree with the other two.  Been there, done that.  YOU have as much right to the home as he does, so don't leave it.  If he throws your things outside, call the police.  But before anything else happens,  get a lawyer.  You'll get the best advice from a lawyer.  In the meantime, make sure you get all your important papers together, and out of the your kids birth certificates, your marriage certificate, go to the bank, get the money and wait for the explosion.  Keep your phone with you at all times, and if he even threatens you, call the police. 

I was married to a controller......and he's classic.  Keeping you away from friends and family is what all controllers do.  Criticising everything you do, it's all typical.  Remember, the man who trys to control a woman is really a scared spineless man. 

While you're at work, call the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1-800-799-SAFE (7233) where they can advise you about things you can and should do.  Also, do not put your husband down to your kids......he's expecting that, and he's already brainwashing your daughter that it's all your fault.  THAT more than anything else says you need to get rid of him ASAP.  If anything, tell them he's a sick man that needs help.  Good luck to can do it and have peace in your life.