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Abusive Relationships/I want to leave my husband/abuser


Joan wrote at 2006-09-21 21:06:26
I feel like crying reading your letter.

Get out of the relationship. He his beating you down emotionally and will continue forever.

Your son needs you to be strong. By writing your letter, you ARE strong. Continue.

Your husband may be "brilliant" but so was Ted Bundy. Save your life and your son's life while you have a chance. You husband will NOT change.

Good luck and God bless.  

Leigh wrote at 2007-03-05 15:29:39
Your letter really hit home with me because I could've written most of it myself. I moved away from family and friends to marry my husband, but thankfully only a couple of hours. Your husband is an emotional and verbal abuser, just like mine. I've read a lot of this type of abuse and it is common though not often talked about. I feel like I've been dying a slow spiritual death and my self esteem is pretty low. But he hasn't beaten me down so much that I believe I deserve his bad treatment. I just got a job back in my hometown and plan to move back with my daughter (not his biological child, thank God), in the next couple of months. A man who truly loved me wouldn't have me weeping and asking for mercy from his verbal assaults every other day. It's been horrible, but I'm getting out, for my sake and my daughter's sake. I never want her to think this is the way a husband should treat his wife.

smokey-jo wrote at 2007-04-16 22:37:18

I have just read your letter and I also wanted to cry as I am in a very similar situation. My husband has not worked for 7 years. We have 3 children, he drinks excessively everyday and as soon as he drinks he becomes verbally abusive. This can range from comments about my looks, what I am wearing, what I am eating, how I walk, drive etc to the serious "I wish you had the same disease as your mother so you would die of cancer". We have been together since college days so I feel some kind of loyalty to him and my main problem is the worry of how he would cope without me and his 3 children. Would he just disappear from my life or would I have to deal with a emotional wreck for the rest of my life?

Stella wrote at 2007-10-23 14:13:00
Oh Sarah, I feel so much empathy for you and sadness. I too am in quite a similar situation, and with a young child, which as you know makes it even more difficult. Your Husband is definitely abusive, (as mine is), I've finally made the decision to leave mine, right after Christmas. I really believe that you should do the same. It sounds to me that you have an education and career, thank-goodness! I do too, and that really helps us in the aspect of leaving our Husbands, I really feel for all the women out there in similar abusive marriages w/children who have no education/career, they are even more "tied" to their abuser. It sounds like you have a very loving family, (your parents, etc.), so do I, and I too have barely seen them in 4 yrs., and I too am in a new state/city, haven't made friends, don't like it here, and most of all miss my parents and brother TERRIBLY! So, like I said, I REALLY feel for you and sympathize because well, we are almost dealing with the same thing. I know how painful and lonely it is. And how strong we have to be for our child(ren). I just keep telling myself that it WILL get better, this is just one of the most difficult things I will have ever gone through, but I WILL survive. I too have told him I'm going to leave him MANY times, and I've meant it 100 just like you said, but he too will convince me otherwise, and they are SO good at it, but they are TEXTBOOK abusers, they ALL do the same thing, they are unoriginal, misogynistic, abusive, jerks. My Husband too comes from a family of male jerks, just like him, so it's "expected" and he thinks there is no other way for a male to "be". I really feel as if he's a lost-cause now. Now I just need to figure-out the logistics of starting over, and taking-care of our son on my own. Which I can do, and you can too. I know it's scary to think of being divorced, to me it feels sometimes as if I've failed, (which I know deep-down isn't true, but I still get those feelings), the anger, the disappointment, etc. I thought he was the end-all, soul-mate, life-partner, etc. I was raised by a very caring, loving, kind Father, who loves my Mother and us all dearly, his family has always been and is his #1 priority, and he and my Mother have always found and done (still do in their 70's) numerous, interesting activities together for years. I know exactly what you mean about your Husband belittling all of your interests, etc. So does mine, he never takes part in anything I'm interested in, etc. and when we do something as a family he acts horrible 99 of the time. Like I said, I'm not used to that type of behavior in a Husband or Father, I had a much different upbringing than him. So what I'm trying to say is you need to leave him, I would leave under the guise of it just being a temporary separation, (that's what I'm planning on saying), so you can avoid a total blow-out, because I'm sure it will happen once he knows all of his chances have run-out, and to be honest, when you are ending the relationship is when you need to on your guard the most. Good-luck to you, honestly, I will include you in my prayers. Take-care, God-bless and keep safe.

Elly wrote at 2008-08-27 22:01:09
Your situation is so similar to mine - mine that WAS - its scary! I am now separated from my ex-partner and, even though he tries to still contiune the emotional abuse from afar, blackmailing me using kids as pawns, threatening to shoot me or himself (oh its lovely, I think often 'how, how did I ever love that man?) and still lives the same sponging lazy ways, losing his job, living with his mum now, but he can't get to me any more.

Do you know what though?  I thought I had found a lovely new man.  Turns out hes just like the old one with a different name.  He just screamed at me down the phone, accusing me of doing something I hadn't done.  He is stingy too, and never has  a job, and puts me down and belittles things that are important to me.  Is jealous of my friends, uses me and gives litte in return.  The tells me that noone willever love me like he does.  And I was falling for this, all over again.  Argggghhh! But fortunately it has only been a few months and now I see it and I'm walking away form him.  THird time lucky.  BEst of luck to you too.  Becasue if you are still with him remember that emotional abuse will nearly always get worse and worse.  And you cannot live in fear, without love.  Its just horrid and life is TOO SHORT!  I have kids too, and it was the only reason I stayed with my ex.  But in the long run you realise they are better off living wiht one happy, or 'normally' stressed parent rather than living with two people who scream, and are sad.  And they will have to learn the coping tactics you are learning too, to deal with their dad.  Keep in touch? x

been there wrote at 2008-11-12 00:59:54
You need to leave. I don't even know you, but I know you deserve better than what you are getting. It's a lot easier said than done, but start confiding in people you trust and move forward. It may take some time, but take baby steps...and get out of this relationship!

Maria wrote at 2009-01-13 04:02:01
Sarah, don't even think twice..LEAVE!

You still have time to have a decent life for you and your children.

Dharma wrote at 2009-08-01 05:28:53
Hey Sarah,

I was so surprised to hear you reading my story. I am going through a separation right now from a men that could have very well been your husband. I wasn't able to see it until I left him, and only then was I able to see that I was being emotionally, psychologically, mentally and verbally being abused. Also, this back and forth of being nice, being nasty it is called "crazymaking" (that's an actual psychological term and it means exactly that). When I decided to divorce him, which I am in the middle of it right now, I basically did what the Dalai Lama says: "Jump and the net will appear." I wish you the best of luck. For me, it was the best decision I could have made for myself. I have been marry for just a little over two years -- he has practically told me the same lies and stories as your husband -- He NEVER changed, he never loved me and he always loved himself alone.



mary wrote at 2009-10-21 03:03:00
Oh my gosh! I can def relate to the situation. My husband does this as well, except he makes the money. I have made plans to leave him after 15 years of marriage. You should seriously consider this yourself. Think about your son. I bet it won't be long before he starts acting like daddy. He may even grow up and blame you. Think about your son please!

alli33 wrote at 2009-11-28 13:23:23
I too am in a relationahip that is a lot like this one. It's amazing how men can be sometimes. I think that Sarah has put up with enough abuse. It is time to get away from this man. He has all of the signs of an abuser. I have recently went to counseling about my marriage, and my counselor told me to leave. I told her what was going on in my marriage, and she said that abuse is like a honeymoon phase, the abuser will do it for a while, then be nice for a while. It's all a cycle.....

eliza19 wrote at 2009-12-16 07:11:23

you have proven that you are a strong woman.

but you cant let that man to keep on treating your emotions like a slave in hell. LEAVE him for a better life!

Lucky'sMommy wrote at 2009-12-21 14:31:34
I can so relate to what everyone has said, especially you, Sarah.  I am going through almost the same thing with a man that I have married twice.  I cheated on him during the first marriage, and I told on myself because I felt bad.  He looked me up a couple years later because I had moved, and he wanted to get back together & try it again.  I sure didn't know what I was getting myself into.  I have been treated like crap ever since a few months after we got back together.  We have 3 young sons that are 5, 3, and another that would be 7 months on January 3.  But we lost him to SIDS on October 22, 2009 when he was only 4 months 19 days old.  You would think that losing a baby would make you appreciated what you have, but not with him.  I wanna leave, but we promised our baby boy, Lucky, that momma & daddy would always be together.  We also gave him our wedding rings the day of his funeral.  I don't wanna lie to my baby, but I know that he wouldn't want me to live this way.  I am so miserable and depressed that I feel like blowing my head off, but I've got 2 other boys that really need me.  So, just remember, cherish every moment you have with your son.  Only allow him to be around happiness because you could be like me and feel responsible for keeping my son around all the crap I kept him around during his short life.  I feel so guilty that he had to hear us fuss.  We should have been enjoying every single minute of every single day with him & our other 2 boys.  Now I am focusing on making things better for my other boys because they have also had to hear fussing their whole lives.  You are a strong person.  I know this because I live it too.  God is doing a work in us that we don't understand, but one day we will, and it will be all worth it.  I'll be praying for you.

sympathetic susan wrote at 2010-01-08 00:45:02
reading your story makes me think about my marriage. there are many parallels except for the circumstances of the marriage.  sometimes i feel like it was a big mistake and my parents were right, or we should've waited a few years. he was never so mean to me while we were dating. he was very loving and patient. now he has a temper, he's abusive, physically and emotionally.  he puts me down often and makes me feel less than. i was a very confident person before this  relationship.  i was healthy happy and felt onto of the world.  now i am embarrassed over my weight gain, haven't completed my academic dreams and have moved far from my family.  he can be so sweet, but i always feel like somehow i screw up whatever peace treaty we've come to. that i always do something wrong. i've had to give up old friends b/c they were male, school b/c it's too much right now, and seeing my family b/c we just cant do it.  perhaps his financial visits are valid but i miss my parents. i don't think being close to your families means you're not mature enough to stand on your own.  idk what to do. i love him, but i want to love me too.  i feel ashamed to bring this to my family or friends.

cristie wrote at 2010-01-13 00:12:22
Sarah,when i read your message my tears fall down and i can't control my emotion,we have thesame situation right now,its so hard and i dont know what to do. but i know there is a reason why it happened, when i meet him i tought he is my soulmate. you are so brave,i am just afraid of what my family says if i tell them i seperate with him. i hope they will realise everything and they will understand me as well.

jax wrote at 2010-06-01 22:48:52
Every marriage has it's up and downs, good times and bad the thing with marriage is it is more work than a full time job and 10 kids!! People think marriage they think fairy tale wedding then white picket fence and while you can have all that you just can't have it all the time.. But then there are bad marriages where one or both parties are abusive to each other and there is no reason or working that out the person taking the abuse must get out and fast! Your story is a little conflicting because you seem to still care but use the divorce card every time it gets hard? I am trying to understand but when a person throws out the word divorce they usually mean it and if they give the person another chance that would usually be the last chance but seems this has been the third or forth chance? so you really need to ask yourself are you running when things get hard?  

SuzyQ wrote at 2010-10-08 00:24:01
I suggest you read "The Verbally Abusive Relationship" by Patricia Evans.  This book will answer all of the question on this issue that you may have.  I too have experienced this type of relationship and this book was the light for me.  Definitely a life-changing book.  This behavior can make you feel crazy, and doubt yourself, but with the truth you become empowered.  

Sarah wrote at 2010-10-13 06:23:37

I had no idea when I wrote this out of desperation 4 years ago that anyone would read it, let alone be touched by it.  It was so hard for me now to read the words of myself when I was so obviously broken and brainwashed.  But that is WHAT ABUSERS DO.  

Shortly after I wrote this original post, my husband did the unthinkable, which prompted me to finally leave.  One evening, he was screaming at me (and had been for 4 hours) and I was crying and begging him to stop when I looked over and saw my son, 2 1/2 years old at the time, rocking himself and staring off into space.  I recognized this as a coping mechanism that people do when they are dissociating from a situation that is too emotionally crippling to handle.  At that moment, I realized that the reason I had been staying with my husband was all wrong; I had been staying for my son, thinking that it would have been wrong for me to take him from his father.  Something in me 'clicked'.  Even though his years of abuse had destroyed my self-esteem and the will to demand a better life for myself, it could not destroy the love I had for my son.  I told my ex-husband that he was upsetting Lucian, and that I was taking him away until he calmed down.  My ex ended up trying to restrain the two of us, crushing Lucian in my arms until he was screaming.  At that moment, I looked into my ex's eyes and saw that he did not even notice that he was hurting his son.  Abuse will not get better, it will only escalate.  STAYING IS NOT BETTER FOR YOUR CHILDREN.  IT CAN CAUSE LIFE-LONG PSYCHOLOGICAL DAMAGE TO THEM.  

I ended up leaving him under the guise of a visit to my parents after seeing the way he hurt our son while he was trying to keep me from leaving.  I'm not going to lie.  It was the hardest, darkest point in my life.  I spent 3 years in court with him fighting for custody of my son while he did not pay a dime in child support, and used every visitation and phone call to our son to try and torment me from afar. (Don't hire a budget lawyer--HIRE THE BEST LAWYER IN YOUR AREA, especially if you are dealing with interstate custody laws. I'm going to be paying the lawyer bills for the next few years, BUT IT WAS THE BEST MONEY I EVER SPENT.)

There is a happy ending to this story.  I decided that I never wanted to be in a situation again where I was worried I would not be able to make it on my own and support my child.  I went back to school, got a degree in computer science, went to graduate school and became a published researcher in my field. It was hard, but I know I could never have become what I am today if I had not left the man who was torturing me on a daily basis.  I'm not being melodramatic--the techniques he used on me are textbook--gaslighting, etc.  The military even teaches these tactics so that they can break people during prolonged interrogation sessions and captivity. Be prepared for what they call 'stockholm syndrome' or 'traumatic attachment'--you may feel very strong physical and emotional withdrawals when you leave your abuser.  This is normal--your brain has actually become addicted to your abuser.  You may feel this so strongly that you feel you cannot live without them or that you will die without them.  My advice to you is to tell yourself that the worst will be over in 60 days.  Cut off all direct communication with your abuser (I didn't do this, and suffered far longer because of it).  If you can manage to cut them out of your life completely for 60 days, you WILL break the bulk of this addiction.  You will be able to think rationally about the situation, without your thoughts being so muddled by the brainwashing and addiction.  Cross each day off on a calendar, and remind yourself that each day is a step towards freedom.  Detach from the feelings, observe them, observe the urge to call him, to go see him, remind yourself that this is an addiction like any other and you are stronger than the urge.  

The only exception is if there is a child involved--make sure that you consult a lawyer ASAP and make sure you meet your legal obligations to allow access to his children.  That, or ask the lawyer to help you find a way to protect them from him as well.  This is difficult.  Just make sure that: 1) you meet your legal obligations, but 2) DON'T LET HIM USE THE CHILDREN TO GET BACK INTO YOUR HEAD. He has a right to speak to them/ see them as the court demands, but he has no such claim over you!  Fight every urge to see/speak to him.  It will only prolong your addiction to your abuser. Cross off the days, and take pride in this one small act--you have the ability to choose not to engage him or let him into your life.

I have been seeing a therapist regularly to deal with what they call complex post-traumatic stress disorder (C-PTSD).  If you have been in a long-term abuse situation, it is likely that you may suffer from this as well, and I highly recommend that you see a quality trauma therapist once you remove yourself from the abuse.  I have been particularly happy with the results from a combination of traditional 'talk therapy' and EMDR.  However, remember that the scars of abuse run deep (long-term abuse has actually been shown to alter brain chemistry and structure!) and so  the road to full recovery is a long one. But very, very worth it.

The best news of all?  My son is doing very well.  I know that I made the right decision, and I am thankful for it every day. =)

IMPORTANT: If you think you are being abused, see a professional about it, talk to people who are 'on your team' about it. A clever abuser may even turn your own family and friends against you.  (Mine convinced even my own parents for a while that I had post-partum psychosis!) It is almost impossible to extricate yourself, alone, from an abusive situation that has gone on for a long time.  The abuse puts you in a state of learned helplessness with a very small support system and low self-esteem.  You may even have been trained to doubt your own sanity. You will need to gather any support you can muster--consider therapists, supportive clergy, family, friends, shelters.  There are people out there who can help you, and YOU CAN ESCAPE FROM THIS HELL AND BUILD A LIFE THAT IS WORTH LIVING.

Formulate a careful plan that will keep you and your children physically safe, ensure that you can retain custody of your children, and RUN AND DON'T LOOK BACK.


Anna wrote at 2010-10-19 00:55:27
Oh my gosh... can I just tell you how much I am in tears about your story, only because I now realize I am not alone. My husband yells at me almost every night, accusing me of cheating on him, never loving him, not caring about our child, not being a good mother, a disgrace to my dead grandfather and a manipulative witch. He will yell and scream and the stream of hurtful words doesn't end until i finally break down into tears and feel too weak for words. The cops were called one night and like an idiot I covered for him, always thinking it will get better. He has threatened my dog (which now lives with my parents) thrown and broken two of my phones, prevented me from leaving the apartment and taken my phone so I can't call or contact anyone. He plays into every one of my weaknesses and brings up and throws in my face every secret I have ever confided in him. I'm scared to tell anyone, in hopes he gets better. I've encouraged him to get on anti depressants and to therapy and he has. But nothing has changed. I don't know what to do and I am terrified.

Kelli Lewis wrote at 2011-01-27 15:54:51
Sarah, thank you so much for your story and your update. You are an inspiration for women. I bought a plane ticket for me and my son, we leave in 4 days to get out of a situation much like yours. Thank you so much.

jenna wrote at 2011-06-17 17:53:38
My husband has been verbally abusive, moaning and complaining....he can also be very lovely and kind.....he will hug me tell me he loves me and the next minute go crazy over some slight thing!!!Heis manipualtive and I have been with him a long, long time.   He has diabetes and I felt sorry for him.  Then when I was going to leave....I got pregnant.....then I was going to pregnant my daughter and son are in their teens.  I have an auto immune disease.....I feel too weak to walk away, but I know I HAVE to go otherwise I will die.  

gina wrote at 2011-09-23 12:36:56
Hey Sarah,typed a desperate cry for help into google and first up came you.I have been in a toxic relationship for 20yrs now.Things do not improve.leave now.Right now.I stayed for my kids,one has left home the other is 16.And only now do I see that they WOULD HAVE BEEN BETTER OFF IF I HAD OF LEFT YEARS AGO.The drinking only gets worse,the emotional,verbal,and at times physical abuse only gets worse.

I thought that unconditional love meant staying and trying to make it work,unconditional love means leaving before you get to hate!Good luck,hope to hear a positive update.

sarah wrote at 2014-01-31 06:27:09
 I want to say thanks to this great man called Dr Unoko who helped me in my marriage life. my name is Sarah Hasbarger lives in USA memphise so i was married to Albert we both love and like each other before our marriage, he care about my well being so i was so happy that i have found a man like this in my life my parents love him so much because of his kindness towards me and the way he care about me after four years in my marriage, no child he was not showing me much care anymore but i notice something is going on which i no. then i keep on with the relationship and i was hoping one day God will open my way to have a child in my home then i keep on going to church from one play to another by telling all the pastors about my problems that i don't have a child so many of them promise me that soon i we have a child in my home i keep on hoping in God's miracle on till one day when i went for a visit in my friend office then i was welcome by my friend we started dis causing about so many things on marriage life i was so shock she ask me about my wedding and what is going on till now i still don't have a child then i told her my dear sister i don't no what to do anymore and am scared of loosing my husband who have be caring for me for a long time now then she said i we not loosing him i ask how? then she said there is one man called Dr Unoko who help in a relationship then i keep on asking how about him she told me this man can do all thing and make things possible i never believe her for once that this man she is talking about can do it so fast. also i ask her how do i get his contact she said i should not worry my self then she gave me his contact email ID and his number to contact him i said ok i will try my best to do so she wish me the best of luck in life then i went home gotten home, found that my door is open i was scared thinking so many things i don't no who is in my house now i look at the key in my hand i was thinking i did not lock my door shortly a word came into my mind that i should go inside and check if there is any body at home or my husband getting inside, i found that my husband move away his things in the house then i started calling his number refuses to pick i was like a mad Dog i cried and cried don't no what to do then i remember to that a friend of mine gave me a contact today i take my computer i emailed this man called Dr Unoko also i called him on his cell phone which i received from my friend he spoke to me very well and i was happy my husband we come back to me so after the work was well done by Dr Unoko, just in three days i heard my phone ringing not knowing it was my husband telling me his sorry about what he did to me then i accepted him again a month later, i was pregnant for him so i rest my testimony till i deliver safely i we give the best testimony again so my sisters and brothers if you are in such pain kindly contact this great man with this email {DR.UNOKOSPELLTEMPLE30@GMAIL.COM} OR CALL +2348103508204

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I have been in a very unhealthy relationship for a couple of years before I have decided to stop the circle of abuse. I know everything you need to know about abusive and controlling men that you might meet at some point in your life.I will answer any question and any doubt that you might have


I have lots of experience when it comes to abusive,unhealthy and controlling relationships since I was in one when I was younger.

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