Emotional rhino hide…

It’s been a while since I posted anything on here and I guess the reason for that is that, for the most part, I’ve been pretty happy in my new love bubble. It’s been two months and still going strong. And yes, I’ve had some unpleasant exchanges with the ex but it has really helped to have someone completely neutral (well, totally on my side obviously!) to let me cry on their shoulder and get it all out. And that despite the fact that I expressed my concern to him that I was off-loading a little too much but he is so wonderful and supportive and just knowing that he’s there for me has given me extra strength to bat off the negative stuff being lobbed my way.

It also helps to have someone other than my parents to talk to when I’m feeling stressed and under attack because they are far too closely connected to the situation to advise me in the most calm and unemotional way.

Having said that there is the occasional sleepless night after an abusive phone or text exchange which inevitably breaks down from the practical to the downright mentally unstable as far as he is concerned.

Just last week, and bearing in mind I left him mid February and our divorce proceedings are well under way, plus the fact that he’s had a girlfriend since at least April, he texted me to ask about picking the kids up from school and proceeded to practically beg me to consider getting back together with him.

When I point blank refused to entertain the notion telling him that it’s not something I believe can be repaired (and let’s face it, his abusive behaviour over the course of the past ten months has hardly sold the concept of reconciliation to me!) he then resorted to name calling, I’m controlling, I’m selfish and I should be ashamed of myself apparently. He insisted that I pick the children up from him the following day rather than him dropping them back to me so I had no choice.

In the event it was not worth the energy I expended worrying as he was relatively cheerful when I collected the boys and nothing further was said on the matter.

The latest flare up came tonight. He phoned me demanding on the voicemail that I call him back about ‘childcare this week’. He is due to have the boys from Tuesday afternoon through to Wednesday afternoon (I’m at work all day Wednesday). As far as I can see from his work duties he is on rest days Monday through Thursday.

For whatever reason he was in a bad mood this evening, full of bile,  and he was abusive to me on the phone telling me that I must now drop the children to his parents on Tuesday and when I explained that my parents have the children between now (Sunday) and Tuesday he became downright rude “I hate your fucking parents” etc. I put the phone from my ear and told him I would call his parents rather than listen to anything further from him and hung up.

I then phoned his parents expecting to at the very least arrange the handover of the children amicably, if not express to them my distress at hearing him denigrate my own mother and father. What I wasn’t expecting was more abuse from his father, who was very short with me, sarcastic and essentially hung up on me before I could even discuss the time I would be arriving with the children.

From an outsiders perspective it would appear that I must have behaved very badly for these people to treat me with such contempt and disrespect but actually, all I’ve done is make the decision not to put up with a life of misery and walking on eggshells with a man who I believe to be personality disordered.

I know that they blow hot and cold – as I said above I’ve expended far too much energy at times worrying about moments of future conflict – particularly when I know I will be forced to face him (or now in this case, his parents) in person. It makes me feel so trapped knowing that I can’t escape these people because they are a part of my children’s lives but really, at the end of the day someone has to be the stable one for the sake of those two little boys and I just have to continue to develop a nice thick skin for their sake.

His previous ex seems to have managed to do it and yes, I know he holds her beneath his contempt but eleven years have gone by and not only does his behaviour have very little impact on her life now, but his 12 year old daughter appears to want little to do with him which massively mitigates the need for any contact between any of them.

So there’s my answer – time – and in the meantime: emotional rhino hide.


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