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Thread: Dealing with abuse and guilt

  1. #1

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    Dealing with abuse and guilt

    My fiance and I have been together for 5 years. Although he is a loving, attentive and caring partner, he is also a bit controlling and had a few problems with my independence. In the last couple years our relationship was not going so great. But we still had many good moments that made everything worth it, and we were making efforts to adjust to each other’s needs, which was not so easy: I am the independent type, more career-oriented, while he is more romantic and focused on family and relationship. Also, he has bipolar disorder and refuses to treat it, letting it spill into our relationship in the form of anger and manipulative behavior. It has always been very confusing and hurtful and it got to a point that I didn’t know anymore if I wanted to spend my life with him, even though he was the most wonderful of men when he was in a “good day”. Also, I have always believed that I should be there for him no matter what and didn’t want him to see me as unsupportive or absent.

    I have a 12 year-old daughter that he used to treat as his. She was 7 when we met, and since then he decided to assume a paternal role (that i never asked for, by the way - her bio dad is not at all absent and I never was the lonely, overworked single mom figure; I am actually very resourceful and self-sufficient). In the beginning I thought his caring treatment of her was very sweet. But after a while we started arguing because he thought he had to have “rights” over her - to have a say in her hours, schoolwork, food choices, etc. To an extent that he started questioning even what his bio dad does for her, from medical opinions to Christmas presents.

    Whenever I disagreed with him, he played the outcast card - he said he didn’t feel wanted in my house or in my family dynamics. And that was not only in what concerned my kid, but in everything else. He never accepted the fact that I didn’t really need him to help care for my business or other things in my life - in his mind a relationship consists of two partners sharing all aspects of life and he used to get really resented when I didn’t want or need his inputs. He was always trying to push boundaries to get to a place where he could feel more in control. Thus, sometimes I would allow him to have his way so peace could be maintained and he wouldn’t feel “rejected”.

    My girl used to trust him entirely and we had a lot of fun together. Sometimes she would ask to share the bed with us, especially when she felt sick. Then one day, when she was 11, he started to bring her to our bed on the weekend mornings himself. That started bothering me and I would ask him to leave her alone in her own bedroom. But he wouldn’t listen. I got afraid to offend him and make him feel bad and “unwanted” - he was a good person, right? I thought, “well, he just wants to feel like we are a family”, and ended up allowing it a few times.

    Until the day my girl told me that he had touched her breasts while we were together in bed, and I was asleep.

    My world crumbled. I couldn’t believe I was living one of the worst mother’s nightmares. I confronted him. He said he was absolutely not aware of what had happened. We discussed the issue and, considering he had bipolar disorder, and that he had acted the same with me before (sexual touching while asleep), I suggested that he could have an underlying condition. It was hard to believe he was “that” type of guy. We talked, the three of us. He apologized, she took his apologies; life resumed. But she never treated him the same, getting very upset every time he came to spend the weekends with us. And honestly, I could never feel comfortable again when he was around.

    Then one day she told her school counselor. She was understandably not being able to get over the situation. And I got a call from Child Protection Services. A social worker visited my house, interviewed me, and talked to him on the phone. In the end the allegations of child neglect and abuse were deemed unfounded, but now I have to live with that stigma, and it is a very hard pill to swallow. I have been through so much to be with my child and raise her on my own, it was definitely unfair that allegations of neglect had fallen on me.

    With the quarantine, I had to suddenly stop seeing my fiance, and it was a wonderful opportunity to be on my own to evaluate our relationship, as well as heal my relationship with my daughter. The truth is that we are much better off without him in our lives. I felt responsible for what happened, for not being strong enough to go against his whims. I am facing a lot of guilt, thinking about what I could have done so she didn’t have to go through that, if I had been firmer and didn’t have the habit to ignore my discomforts so others could feel comfortable.

    But I also feel guilty for his feelings. He is miserable. He’s been writing to me and trying to get together, and rebuild our relationship. In our last chat I noticed that he is in a certain denial (or ignorance) of what it means for a woman, especially at my daughter’s age, to be inappropriately touched by a man. As much as I feel sorry for him, there’s no way I am going to put my child through having him involved with us again. Also, how to trust? How could I be sure that his behavior was triggered by a condition and not deliberate? I don’t know what kind of person I would be if I kept seeing the man that hurt my child. Unintentionally or not, the consequences of what he did are here and cannot be erased. He is expecting me to do something, and I know he is angry and feeling misunderstood. He probably thinks I don’t care.

    I feel really terrible for the whole situation and would appreciate any inputs. Getting Ready for a First Date

  2. #2
    Forum Supporter ~Seraphim ~'s Avatar
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    Your child tells you she was molested and this person is still in your life and hers???? Really ?????????? As someone who was sexually abused by a family member this makes me sick. Thank Jesus my mom believed me and my father as well. Can’t read this anymore. You have failed to protect your daughter that IS neglect and abuse.

  3. #3

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    @Seraphim, thank you for your reply, but you probably didn't get the nuances of the situation. I am suffering, and I am confused, this is why I posted this here - to try to clarify things with the help of compassionate people and not to be judged. No, he is not in our lives anymore, although he's been trying; and yes, I definitely believed my daughter. I was sexually abused in different situations, also by family members, with the acknowledgement of my mom who didn't do anything, so I DO know. Anyway, your post somehow helped me to feel stronger, and for that I am thankful.

  4. #4
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    Originally Posted by Melonella
    @Seraphim, thank you for your reply, but you probably didn't get the nuances of the situation. I am suffering, and I am confused, this is why I posted this here - to try to clarify things with the help of compassionate people and not to be judged. No, he is not in our lives anymore, although he's been trying; and yes, I definitely believed my daughter. I was sexually abused in different situations, also by family members, with the acknowledgement of my mom who didn't do anything, so I DO know. Anyway, your post somehow helped me to feel stronger, and for that I am thankful.
    Believe me I AM compassionate you won’t find too many with a bigger heart but if you KNOW how it feels why did you still have him over and subject her to a “ talk” ??? I don’t get that , like at all. If someone had done this to my son they wouldn’t be living on this Earth. Protecting our children above anything is our job other people be damned.

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  6. #5
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    Having anything to do with him is a betrayal of your daughter and it doesn’t matter if he has a “ condition “. There should be ZERO ZERO reason he is bringing your daughter to bed with you guys and then fondling her. You are not his mom but hers. Right ?

  7. #6

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    Originally Posted by ~Seraphim ~
    why did you still have him over and subject her to a “ talk” ??? I don’t get that , like at all.
    It was after she told me what happened and I confronted him. Then he wanted to apologize to her, and we talked, the three of us, to acknowledge our feelings.

    Maybe you are right, maybe I shouldn't have tried to be so thoughtful of his feelings as well, given his claims that he was not aware of what happened.

  8. #7

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    Absolutely.

  9. #8

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    Originally Posted by Melonella
    My fiance and I have been together for 5 years.
    This should read "My fiance and I WERE together for 5 years."

  10. #9
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    Originally Posted by Melonella
    It was after she told me what happened and I confronted him. Then he wanted to apologize to her, and we talked, the three of us, to acknowledge our feelings.

    Maybe you are right, maybe I shouldn't have tried to be so thoughtful of his feelings as well, given his claims that he was not aware of what happened.
    Putting a child in that kind of position is plain wrong. She doesn’t have to acknowledge HIS feelings. She is 11 he is a grown ass man who put his hands on her.

    I think you need to see who is the real victim here and to hell with him and I hope your daughter is getting help. You need some as well because I think your own trauma has skewed what you see as appropriate.

  11. #10
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    What were you thinking! You should have been done, right then and there! You are supposed to put your child's needs before your own.

    How long did you continue to live with guy, after he molested her?

    This guy had a boatload of issues that you should not have been exposing your daughter to, then you find out he fondles her.

    Time to take a long break from dating, so you can reflect on your poor choices in men and what you are subjecting your child to. I also suggest some therapy.

    Why haven't you blocked and deleted this guy? Show your child with action that you are going to protect her.

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