Could do with some advice on minimising contact with abusive ex so thought id start a thread which may be helpful if anyone else has these problems too, and how youve overcome them.
If you believe your ex displays any symptoms of being a sociopath it would be good to take this test
if your ex displays any / all of these traits she is a narcissist / psychopath / sociopath
For 5 years now I've been unknowingly 'feeding' my exes character defect and aiding her in her pursuit of breaking my character and alienating my daughter. She is now 7 years old and our bond is at most broken. A good start to get over this is by reading and studying the book 'psychopath free' this book has given me strength at a time where I've felt quite low and hopeless.
What id like to ask, is if anybody has any tips on what I should put forward to the courts, to minimize my exes abuse to my daughter and to also minimize any contact with her.
- A good suggestion put forward already is a 'communication book' I can already think of a few spiteful things she may or may not do around this but its a start.
- She has also said that now on daughters weekend contact that she wants a phone call from my daughter as and when she wants (shes been fine here for 5 years), according to the book this is to break down my self esteem and character. Another narcissistic trait.
- Also on holidays abroad she wants contact via facetime at least once per day each morning. Something that I request and also get denied when she goes away particularly last time when she went to turkey and there was a coop! not only that but a thunder and lightening storm which struck right next to my daughter put me through some right situations and my head through its paces, but I understand now that a narcissist does not feel normal human emotions so I cannot expect to be able to work along nicely with this person .
I've just taken the test you posted and my ex comes out as cunning manipulator which seems about right...... somehow..... i don't know maybe just how i'm feeling.
i have phone calls, was twice a week now once but it seems that their wound up quicker and quicker, my son can be talking and then he seems to have to rush of the phone. don't know about other people here but what ever i do seems to be copied and repeated but much bigger and better, or blockers are put in place, we've been going for walks with my kids and parents dogs but more and more their wellies stopped coming when asked for, cloths sent are all old and small.... and not warm things, i buy new and send them back with them but their never returned so i've had to stop, when asked my son says that they have to change before they come over. same with toys, there not allowed to bring their own or any of their pocket money..... it seems that everything is 'hers'.... shes always come across as a bit selfish but these are my kids things...... your with someone for so long and their like this.
...withholding their belongings and sending them in inappropriate clothing is quite common I'm afraid. We suggest that in this case you buy a couple of sets of clothes and wellies etc and keep them, changing them back into the clothes they came in before returning them.
The same with toys and pocket money. Even if you don't get the shared care you're after, you can create "home" at your house and tell them that they have two homes, one with mum and one with you....she will probably tell them different, but her bitterness will not go unnoticed by the children as they get older.
Don't be the one to question the children, allow them to be able to relax when they are with you....if they want to tell you something, they are more likely to if they feel they won't be put on the spot, let you be the safe haven where they are free to enjoy their time and relax when spending time with you.
I'm in a similar situation to yourself also, I've bought my daughter a phone which is topped up monthly. Phone calls through the week if any as they have whittled down alot are monitored over loudspeaker and are normally rushed. I tend to talk to my daughter on visits about stuff we can speak about over the phone. We even made up cool nicknames for each other which is a great ice breaker. Still working through this one...
Copied and repeated also is the theme here, lots of competition! She is also being given the choice now whether to come to dads or stay at mums and do something fun. Best way to get over this at least during the waiting period to go to court I've found is to keep things spontaneous and under wraps that way its more fun and less likely to be scuppered. Your motives for taking your child places are genuine and with good intention. Walks with the dog will be your tradition, something your child will grow up to remember.
Clothes - Seems to be a trend, having 3 children I've only just discovered this time around. My daughter is now sent in pyjamas as clothes were never being exchanged similar to your scenario. In all actuality this is a good idea, even though sometimes if I collect her from school etc there is a deficit. PJs can be had now from tesco for about £6, compared to the cost of good outfits thats a good compromise.
As difficult and ugly the situation is we must persevere in the hope that these women grow up to realise we are here to do the best for our children. Though sometimes this is not the case unfortunately.
I've been practising the 'grey rock method' with my ex. Though recent issues have caused things to flair up its got to be the only way to keep ones sanity. Grey rock means to basically be as boring as possible to the manipulator, communicating only about the child, ignoring the emotions and other grievances. That way they will move on to their next target and leave you alone.
Thanks a lot to all posters here... a strong reminder that what can seem like a completely non-standard situation is being endured by many others in separation. So much of what is written above resonates with me!
I'm glad to know that this is helping others too. For so many years I was a prisoner of my own mind due to manipulation and subtle games. What we must remember is that we are not the problem, and that we can overcome it with positive thinking and being the most genuine version of ourselves to our children.
i must be feeling better today.... the first sentence about phones being on speaker made me laugh in irony.... its always on speaker.
I read up last night a bit about narcissist and narcissistic behavior on psychology today and there were a number of things that just seem to hit home. One was a bit about narcissists being charming.... in my case she is very charismatic.... a natural people person but only so far as to get what she wants, shes never had a long term friend as people are unceremoniously cut from her life the minute she takes offence or feels wronged..... but the bit that struck home was where they make other people..... er ... feel bad. My ex would always..... still does i suppose..... well i'm not doing her much justice because she does have good qualities..... but i do remember her just peck and peck and peck until I started to feel stressed myself... and i remember this from the very beginning of our relationship..... well soon after it became serious.... but yes she'd peck and peck and peck and as soon as she'd got that response it would stop..... and it always seemed more prominent when she was having difficulties at work , or stressed herself i suppose.
I found the bit about grey rock method interesting... and i must say i like the idea but i need to keep building my confidence up.... these last few days it feels like split personality.... on minute melancholy, the happy, then dejected and mind like Swiss cheese, then speak to a few people and feel more confident..... from minute to minute... even now going from angry to laughing about the phone to feeling repentant and bad about putting the ex.... my kids mother in a bad light......
sorry for hijacking your post..... I just know that i need to build up my strength like i use to be before we were together.... i feel that I've weather it for so long but these last few years i've become a different person ..... i do know that meditation has worked...... does work and i do it daily.... when i remember .... and certainly getting enough sleep and keep eating..... the simple things count a lot.... its just that you have to realises this.... and then keep realising it because when the melancholy and Swiss cheese brain kicks in..... different person again.... need to stop making this about her..... make myself the grey rock when around her.... i'll go do more reading.......
also came across self help CBT on youtube that i'm going to start giving ago see if it helps.
Its all so strange because when i'm with my children i'm almost back to my old self.... its like something in me just steps up when their there.... then leaves again with them.... and now the doubt.... am i doing this more for me.... or them?
Your post resonates with me 100%.. absolutely every part of it
I found the book almost by some miracle. It does say that the sociopath / narcissist will cause you to feel guilt and self doubt. It also states that any character traits she did display that you may miss about her are manufactured, as she was mirroring your personality to win you over..
The pecking bit is to wear down your character. My ex is so patronising and condescending it's like she was turned on the highest setting all the time. I remember at one stage feeling like giving up and broke down on my birthday in tears. At these times I was such a strong character and was myself charismatic and confident. Jheeze I haven't cried since childhood so that was a stretch.
Another trait is to make you feel crazy or 'crazy making' remember you are normal and are only feeling natural emotions over the games that are being played. I also question whether I do my bit with my little girl for her or for myself. My ex says that she doesn't want to see me as much anymore and that she is bored at mine.Hard to believe, she is in her head this is why. This is something im still working through and hopefully the courts can work this out, though I find it hard to believe they can help much with this kind of behaviour hence my thread for help and tips.
Yes there are several things that can help, Meditation is recommended by the book at every opportunity you may get. One of them just being a simple 10 breaths whenever negative thoughts come into your mind. Remember if you are going to let her live in your head you may aswell charge rent!
I too get swiss cheese brain, I discovered that my problem was switching from working man 5 days of the week to a high energy fun loving dad over the weekend. Once they go home the energy levels drop and left with our own thoughts I suppose we overthink stuff maybe?
Things I've found that help are..
- Counselling - better to find a counsellor who is experienced with abusive relationships
- Reading books to keep the mind busy, self help books being the best as they aid personal growth. Psycopath free being my #1 at the moment
- Yoga Monday or early in the week, it really destresses the mind
- Reading the Dad forums, helps you realise you are not alone in this. Its very liberating, liberating being the key word here as behind it all we are victims ourselves of oppression
- Fitness. Its good for you mentally and physically plus the kids dig the muscles
They say it takes 1-2 years to recover from this type of relationship. I am 5 years in and have been finding it very hard to trust another woman enough to let her over my walls. Have been burying this stuff at the back of my mind and turning a blind eye but that hasnt helped. Now Im focussed on recovery and im about 70% there (Most days)
Just remember you are a good person, you are a great dad and you will overcome this a much stronger person
My wife ex husband is a narcissist. He not only created a hate campaign against her when she finally found the strength to leave him but also by doing so created a situation where no one saw his faults because he was so adamant in lying about her. She was with him for 9 years, controlling, manipulative, withheld sex, belittling her in front of family and friends.
My wife went to court to get a child arrangements order because he said he was going to take the children out of the country, low and behold when he was interviewed by cafcass he had bizarrely no knowledge of this and cafcass were another person who assumed it was my life that was lying.
After a non molestation order on him expired, he took the liberty of verbally abusing her on a handover. Since then My wife demanded that ANY contact goes through email, no text messages, no phone calls nothing. He rings her phone one night during the week to speak to the children. On handovers she stands on the passenger side of the car while I get out as well. The children go straight to her.
I will say, it works. She isnt stressed, she answers his emails when she has a clear head and doesn't take any crap basically.