Reply To: Is this ADHD or did I marry a manipulative con artist?

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E. pollar

I read the responses and agreed with all of them 100%. This IS abuse.
I really feel for you as it seems that your caring and understanding nature has been taken advantage of,
but what you are describing goes beyond the normal realms of the up’s and down’s in a married couples relationship.

What was really heartening was when you responded to your replies and I saw a glimmer of hope as you begin to realise that your marriage is a lie and that putting up with all his bad behaviour has become the norm. So here are my words of wisdom as someone who lived with a financial and emotional abuser for 20 years:

    Try to separate yourself from your husband

. You are not him and he is not you. You are a wonderful person with your own strong identity, although you have probably lost sight of this because he insists life is all about him. Between gaslighting you, stonewalling you, financially abusing you and using coercive control, you are probably physically, mentally and emotionally exhausted from life with your abusive husband and have lost your ability to step away from the situation and see just how damaging it has become.

    Be kind to yourself

– one of the best pieces of advice I was given was to be as kind to yourself as you are to others. So make this your No1 priority. Take time out, prioritise yourself, spend the money where you think you will gain the most from it. For me it was seeing a therapist weekly for 6 months. I paid for it myself but saw it as vital support.

    Involve others

– your husband sounds just like mine was – he thought he was above the law and the rules didn’t apply to him.
This makes for a very dangerous enemy. My husband was so furious that I dared to leave him that he spent almost 2 years trying to totally annihilate me and my children. He falsified legal documents and got rid of or hid assets, telling one bare lie after the other. He tried to make out that I was a terrible mother and accused me of all kinds of horrendous things, but this backfired when I calmly pointed out that if I was such a bad person, why did he leave me alone with the children all those times, for so many years? How come no one else thought the same way as him?
It was frightening how this man would stop at nothing. There was no line he would not cross.
Luckily, I had recorded some of the abuse on video and kept all texts and emails that contained his vile attacks.
So involve as many people as you can – get your family and trusted friends to back you up, because he will come for you, and make sure you only talk through emails, or get an appointed mediator/Lawyer/Solicitor to deal with him. That way you won’t be the only person who sees just how horrible your husband can be and as you said, he does not play by the rules anyway.
Normally when you are the victim of domestic abuse you should not be asked to deal with your abuser directly, for your own protection, cause you know he is not going to fight fair.

    Try to slowly shift your perspective

– little by little – baby steps. Focus your energy from thinking “what did I do to deserve this treatment and how can I fix it?” to “How dare he treat me this way. I do not deserve this and I have to distance myself from this man and put measures in place to protect myself.”
I got really angry once I woke up to the fact that I was being abused. I never felt like a victim or thought that something like this could happen to someone like me (I am an educated, strong, moral woman). But abuse knows no social or economical boundaries and people from all walks of life can easily find themselves at the mercy of an abuser. So don’t go beating yourself up about it. Turn your feelings of guilt, injustice and regret into something constructive and do all you can to move on and up in your life.

It’s a big life lesson to learn that you cant fix him, you cant change him and you cant stop him messing up his life.
However, you can fix you, you can change you and you can stop him messing up your life.

I know you can do it, op. You are stronger than you think. You have put up with so much without breaking, so there must be a very strong, resilient person inside you. It’s time to put yourself first. Good luck x