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Getting Out of an Abusive Relationship

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Leaving an abusive relationship is not always easy. But with support and a plan it can be done. This is a guide about getting out of an abusive relationship.
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Ask a QuestionHere are the questions asked by community members. Read on to see the answers provided by the ThriftyFun community or ask a new question.

By 1 found this helpful
August 7, 2013

I am 23 years old and I have a 2 month old baby. I have been with my bf who is the father of my son for 7 years and I can't take living with him any longer. Throughout the whole relationship it's been verbal abuse and physical fights. We both have suffered bruises. And every time I decide to leave he stands in the way and won't let me. Eventually I calm down and have to pretend everything is OK because I am on my own and my parents are far from me and I have no place else to go.

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I got tired of being slapped around so I started standing up for myself, but that only makes matters worse. I feel like I am with him only because its been 7 years and I've gotten used to not having friends and not being close to my family. My son was born in 2013 and everything went wrong. He bought everything I needed for the baby, but it's like "here I gave you what you need so deal with it on your own". He only watches the baby when he needs something. He wants me to cook everyday at twelve for lunch and for dinner. Everything he asks for I have to give it to him in hand. He is dirty and doesn't shower for the whole week. He doesn't help me much either.

I have gotten to the point were I just hate this man. I don't even look for him and I don't talk to him. He just works, comes home, and smokes pot. He is very very addicted to pot. He doesn't like to go out to do anything. I can't go out with him because small things make him very upset. He's very rude and obnoxious and I just want a happy positive life for me and my baby even if that means letting go of what is holding me back which is him. But it's just me, my 2 month old baby, and my dog and we have no place to go. I haven't started working and I don't have a nanny and my baby is just too small still, he needs me more than ever. What can I do to get away from this relationship that's tearing me apart? Would I qualify for housing if I left?

By Bianca from Scranton, PA

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August 8, 20130 found this helpful
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There are at least one or more shelters in your town or close by where you and the baby and even the dog can go. You can find numbers all over the place, or go to http://www.thehotline.org/

So go. Be strong and keep in mind that

A: He is endangering your health and esp' the health of your son by smoking pot, which is illegal. Call the cops some day when he is at work and you are not there anymore.

B: There will come a time when he begins to hurt the baby. You know it, so just go. When he is working, make arrangements with the safe houses and just leave.

By staying you are saying it's ok for him to hurt you. If you let him hurt your son, sorry to say you are just as bad as him.

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Get out while you are still young and have some chance at a normal life.

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August 9, 20131 found this helpful
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Contact your family, tell them the truth of what is going on and ask for their help. The further away you get the better. Don't ever return once leaving. You and your baby and the dog for that matter are in danger. A person like this doesn't change without help. You will be doing all of you a favor by changing this situation.

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August 9, 20130 found this helpful
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Go to a shelter. You have so many issues right now, that none of them can be dealt with alone. A supportive shelter. This will also give your man the opportunity to work on his issues, as well. A shelter will funnel different help organizations to you and your child. Just think "happy" for one and all. Be happy. Meanwhile, try not to bear a grudge against this hated person. Because you are separated from your family, it is difficult for all concerned. Give a little kiss to your little one from me.

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August 9, 20131 found this helpful
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My first husband was physically abusive to me, then he started on the kids. My sister helped me leave the state. I stayed in that marriage too long, you are young, your baby is young, the baby can escape without lifelong emotional damage. It is very heart-beating scary I know to make that first move, but how liberating it feels to do it. We are lucky enough to nowadays have a computer to do great research about local shelters, so get to researching and start living a happy life, you can do it!, I did it! Linda H. Bellevue, N.E

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September 12, 20131 found this helpful
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Abusive people will isolate you from your support group. So the first step is to reconnect with your family and friends in any way that is available to you. Let them know what is going on. Get away from this guy. Move in with your parents, even though they are far away, if you have to for a while.

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July 22, 20132 found this helpful

I have been in a relationship for 11 years. It just ended. He was not always very nice to me. He slapped me and tried to choke me once and he went to jail. When he came back he didn't touch me with his hands again. He was very verbally abusive. Telling me I was lazy. I'm a very horrible person. Then why did he love me? He said he did.

He couldn't keep a job because of drinking. I supported him most of the time. He finally got sober, got a great job, and was nice to me again. Recently he started drinking again. The verbal abuse back big time. He was awful. I told him he doesn't get to treat me that way. He has money now so he up and left. My question is what is wrong with me that makes me miss him and think I still love him? I am not a bad person.

By Jill

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July 24, 20130 found this helpful
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Relationships can be physically addicting, the feelings, the habits, the responses. This can result in withdrawal at the end of the relationship. I would go get some antidepressants, lexapro is great, and also some counseling. It will help you be more the you that you want to be. I will pray for your situation. Recovery and 12 step programs always start with the idea that you cannot do things alone.

Don't think about what you do wrong, in your own opinion, think about what you want your life to look like. A person does not have to have another person in their life to be fulfilled.

Also you are a strong person to have gotten thru this at all. Blessings

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July 24, 20130 found this helpful
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Sarcastic, unsupportive & harmful disrespectful words have hurt you. You deserve a much better relationship. Make a personal vow to yourself that you will make a better different life for yourself. You need the love & grace of Jesus to help with your negative effects from this ending relationship. You are fragile and breakable. It's good that he has left. You need to deal with your own hopeful future. God hears, God understands and is not stingy with hope. God's love can provides a safe place for your pain. Don't let another person steal your joy and hope. God heals the brokenhearted and bandages their wounds (Psalm 147:3). Do not cling to a hope of a bad relationship that will get you knocked down. You are of far greater importance that deserves a kinder future. Jesus is your answer. Seek Him now.

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September 2, 20130 found this helpful

I am a mother of 4 children. I am married to a verbally and sometimes physically abusive man. He is not the kids biological father. I know if I leave it will be with only my children, very little money I can stash away without him knowing, and maybe a couple of suitcases of clothes. I do not have friends because I'm not allowed to. And the only family I have are 1400 miles away and on meth.

I have not worked, but a couple of months between this and my last marriage to the kids' dad (which ended after he hospitalized me after coming home under the influence of drugs and whiskey). I don't have a high school diploma or really anything to give me hope that I can do what I know I need to do, not just for me, but mainly my children. Is there any hope at all that I can make a life for myself and the kids. I have lost my license, Social Security card, and have only a copy of my birth certificate. I did find a photo copy of my ID, but it doesn't ever help me when I need to prove my identity. I do know I cannot keep putting the kids and myself through this just because he provides food, clothing, and a roof over us. I think all of us feel we would be in a better place hungry, naked, and on the street! Does anyone know where I could start getting away from what feels like Hell?

By scaredmom from WV

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September 3, 20130 found this helpful
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Take your kids and go to a shelter for battered women. From what I have heard they have all kinds of information that can help you, with the things that you need help with. they will also provide rooms for you and the kids. They usually have donated clothing, some used and some new that they will help you out with to a certain extent.

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September 4, 20130 found this helpful
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The other ladies have given you good advice. Find out about your nearest women's shelter, pack what clothes you can carry, and leave as soon as you can, keeping everything a secret. Do not worry about property or finances at this stage. When you get to the shelter and safety, there will be people who can help you progress to the next step - divorce (with the help of legal aid), social assistance, education and training for you, housing, and so on. These social safety nets and organizations are intended to help people such as yourself. Make the decision to leave NOW, and make a plan to carry it out ASAP.

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September 4, 20130 found this helpful
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Good advice from these ladies. There are a lot of people that care about you and want to help you. Give yourself and children a chance to be happy and free of the evil that is a part of your life now. You will find caring people at the Battered Women's Shelter and if you don't have any way to get there call the police and ask them about how to get transportation to it. Or you can call the Salvation Army and they will help you with the information you need. Praying for you and the children.

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July 31, 20130 found this helpful

I have been married 11 years (together 15) and have two boys, 17 and 7. My husband is mentally, verbally, and emotionally abusive to me and my boys. He has always been this way, but lately he is out of control. He manages and controls everything from the money to video games.

Today was the last straw as be kicked my son out of the house for playing a video game. My boy, tired of his abuse, told him off and rightly so, but my husband threatened to beat him up and he said if he did not leave there would be a tragedy. He said this as he opened his gun cabinet.

My son left and he is staying with his friend and his parents up the street. They are such good and kind people and, at least, he is safe. My son is a wonderful child, honor student, talented musician and singer and no drugs or smoking or problems. He rarely leaves the house unless it's school or the occasional friends get together.

I want to stay here because my son wants to finish high school at his school and I need to be near him. I think after he graduates we can just live together when he goes to college.

My family lives far away and they know nothing of this as I am so ashamed. I do not drive and don't have a penny on me because my husband does not allow it. He says it's because I spend it that he refuses to give me money. I live in the mountains so around here I cannot get around too much as there are no buses or taxicabs. I am very limited and I feel stuck. My self esteem is trash, I am ashamed, scared and I feel paralyzed.

I don't really know anyone around here; at least not to confide in them and ask them for help. I don't know what to do, but I know I want out of this hell hole. If anyone has a suggestion or a connection or anything that can help or guide me, please help me. I live in Netcong, New Jersey. Thank you all so much and God bless you!

By MB

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August 1, 20130 found this helpful
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From what you describe, your best bet would be to ask your family to come and get you and the boys, while your husband is at work. At this time, your main consideration has to be to get the boys and yourself to safety. Your oldest son will probably thrive more, in a location where he doesn't have to worry about his Dad flying off the handle. Also on your way out of town make sure you get some kind of restraining order against your husband, providing you are serious about leaving.

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August 2, 20130 found this helpful
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If you ask your family to come and get you. I would ask them to take you to somebody they know can keep you safe and someone your bully doesn't know. Your family's place is the very first place he will look for you. Don't be there. In the meantime, when you use the internet, delete all history. Do not keep telephone numbers of people that are helping you in any book or piece of paper he can find. Memorize those numbers if you can. He cannot find them if they're stored in your memory and not wrote down. If you or your sons will carry any money, do not use debit or credit cards, use only cash. Do your very best not to leave a paper trail for him.

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August 3, 20130 found this helpful
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I grew up in a home like you described. My mother chose to stay. From a child's point of view you are not doing them any favors. Living in violence will cause them more harm than I can list hear. I do hope you walk away. Because it is not healthy for you, either. Opening a gun cabinet when he us angry? Run, girl, run. I certainly wish my mother would of.

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By 1 found this helpful
April 26, 2015

I am 31 with 5 kids. The oldest is 14 and the youngest is 4. I have been with my husband for 17 years and married for 3. When my oldest son was little my husband used to hit me and call me a lot of names and I left and went to a domestic violence shelter, but because of his mom we got back. He has not hit me since, but he says he is going to. He also calls me really bad names to the kids.

He has not worked in almost 8 years. I work at a restaurant 38 to 45 hours per week to support everyone. He tells the kids we are getting a divorce and that I don't want to spend time with them and that's why I work so much. When I question him about it he says the kids are lying. He makes fun of the way our 13 year old daughter eats and tells my oldest son he will "hurt him bad" if he is too rough with our 4 year old.

He isn't my oldest son's biological dad, but has raised him. Now that my son is a teenager he wants to meet his real dad and my husband tells him if that's how he feels don't ask him for nothing and he refuses to do anything with him. My husband thinks I should pay him for babysitting our kids while I'm at work.

All my family lives in other states except for my mom who is staying with me right now, until he gets mad at her and kicks her out. I should include that before we got married I left with the kids and moved to Arkansas and he followed. His mom keeps telling me I can never leave him again cause if I do he will kill himself and he tells the kids he doesn't care if he dies.

I don't love him and want a divorce, but he keeps saying he knows more people than I do and if he can't have the kids he will make sure I don't have them either. I know I should leave, but don't know how to go about it. We live in low income housing and I can barely make the rent and other bills because he makes syure that all my checks are gone the day I get it.

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By 0 found this helpful
May 27, 2013

I'm 47 and on my 2nd marriage to a younger man. He is verbally, emotionally, and mentally abusive. He criticizes me and blames me for everything. He is a control freak who yells, screams, and swears at me. He throws things like a child and has tantrums. He has to be in control and like to have his own way. I'm always in tears. He checks up on me. We never have sex. He treats me badly. He is threatening and intimidating and it's like walking on eggshells. He has mood swings.

I have 3 daughters from a previous relationship. He hates my kids and my cats. I have no job or money and no one to stay with. I am so low I just want to end it all now so the pain will stop. I live in fear.

I have nowhere to go. No one is going to give me a house as I have no money. I can't drive. I've been with him almost 6 years. I dread the key in the door. He has a job, but is in a lot of debt; he keeps spending all the time. He ripped out the phone line too.
I want a divorce, but cannot see any escape.
Please help me.

By spellbound

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May 28, 20130 found this helpful
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For one thing find a way to get to a battered women's shelter. You more than likely would have to leave the cats behind, but that is small stuff, compared to your life and kids lives. You must have some way to get out. You don't have to worry about a divorce at this time, the main thing is to get out.

Most of the shelters that I have heard of do help with job training, etc. You wouldn't even have to take many clothes with, the shelters usually have boxes of clothes that have been donated, and from what I have heard they are decent clothes.

If you are given money for groceries, squirrel some of that away and keep it in a place where he can't find it. You must have somebody that can help you get away. That being said when you do become free, don't jump into another relationship - be extremely picky about men. It kind of sounds like you aren't picky.

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May 29, 20130 found this helpful
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Go to your closest Women's Abuse center; even if you have to take a bus, or call a taxi! Don't tell anyone you are leaving - not even your daughters, unless they live with you. If so, take the girls with you and get out of there ASAP! Here is a number to call, if you can get to a phone: 1-800-799-SAFE(7233) It is a national organization to help you find a safe place to go.

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November 2, 20130 found this helpful

I have been married 18 years. I have three children. The first years of marriage were filled with violence, control, everything. Fast forward 10 years with church help, some DV classes, my husband is no longer violent, but classic passive aggressive, and all other acts of emotional abuse...classic. He also has emotional affairs, last one was 1 year long.

Now he is in counseling for military personnel, but at some point I woke up and want out. Here is the caveat. I am pregnant with fourth child, 7 weeks, due to obligatory sex and I am not allowed to use birth control. I was so close to leaving finally, but now I feel like a prisoner again. I have not worked in 18 years due to this marriage, my resilience is weak and I am not sure whether to terminate the pregnancy so I can run. I am 43 years old and just will absolutely never trust this man again, truly. I know he is not changing and I don't like him anyways. I am so afraid of turning my young daughters' lives inside out by going to a shelter. Is there another way and I don't want another child. I am so tired.

By Janis

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November 2, 20130 found this helpful

It is your choice whether or not to have an abortion. At your age, I would definitely consider it, rapidly. I would have done it even at a younger age. I also don't know what you mean about disrupting your kids lives by going to a shelter. It would be a lot more calm, than living in the situation you are in now. I have a daughter and her four kids that lived in a shelter for a few months and the kids didn't suffer from it. The way I understand it they make sure the kids get to the same school they have been attending all along.

Talk to somebody at the Department of Social Services and see what advice you can get from them. If you stay where you are, and have the baby, things will only get worse. If as you stated you pregnant because of forced sex, coerced, compelled, or whatever, that is the same as rape, even though you are married.

Some states do have something called marital rape. Why doesn't your husband want you to use birth control, cost, or is it just that he wants to keep you barefoot, pregnant, and in the kitchen? I highly recommend taking your kids and getting out.

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November 2, 20130 found this helpful

Make an appointment to speak to someone at your local DHS office. They have tons of information and programs to help people in similar situations. All of this can be done in secret if you mention that you are in an abusive relationship and need help out.

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November 4, 20130 found this helpful

Janis... So sorry to see you are going through all this repeatedly with him. First, I believe it would be best to go to the shelter. There are a lot of good shelters out there where you can rest and think. It's true, they will still go to their same school so their routines won't be disrupted.

I feel you shouldn't make a rushed decision about aborting the baby in the state you are in. You could regret it for the rest of your life. Take that time in the shelter to really think about it. You can always give it up for adoption if you really end up not wanting to raise another one. But either way, atleast you won't have that haunting you the rest of your life.

I have been in a physically abusive relationship that took me along time to finally leave. I know how hard it is to make that first step, not knowing where to go, how to do it, the money, etc. It's scary... but the shelter can help you work it all out. I highly recommend you do go there, for your children's sake.

Please feel free to contact me if you'd like to talk with someone else who's been there. Della

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November 4, 20130 found this helpful

You sound so tired and discouraged. It must make starting a new life with children seem almost impossible. What you can't see or feel at the moment is the satisfaction and joy you will begin to feel when you begin a new life for you and your children. You have just lost sight of that. Take those first steps and you will begin to see it. In my experience those babies who come along at the worst possible times in our lives turn out to be the biggest blessings of all. Good luck to you.

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November 4, 20130 found this helpful

Janis,

I am sorry that you are in this situation. You haven't mentioned what state your living in, but there are several programs out there that could help you. You need to gather all the strength that you have and remove yourself and your children out of this abusive situation. It will take courage and determination, but you can do it! You already took the first step, by reaching out. Please email me if you need to talk, maybe I can help. Stay strong and always put yourself and children first. I'm praying for you and your children. tammymohl AT comcast.net

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By 0 found this helpful
May 22, 2015

Since I was on here last I told my husband I wanted him to leave. He laughed at me and said he is on the lease so he doesn't have to. Since then I have been avoiding him as much as possible and only talk to him when it regards the kids. He keeps saying do you even want to be with me and stuff like that. When I say no he automatically says I'm cheating on him which I'm not. How can I make him see that I want a divorce? 3 of my kids have asked me if I can make him leave.

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January 26, 20140 found this helpful

I'm disabled and have a 7 yr old daughter who doesn't belong to him. I can't afford to move. When we married 4yrs ago we moved into his house. He's very verbally abusive; everything is my fault. We live around his family. I'm not allowed any friends, he cheats on me, and mistreats us. I have nowhere to go. The police just say if I don't like it leave.

He's turned the power off on us in the middle of winter and turned water off. He's lost his job and won't look for one. I've tried to leave and stay with friends, but he calls DEFAX and the police. This causes so many problems that no one wants us to stay with them cause of the drama. What can I do? He takes stuff out of the house all the time. The police just say if they have to keep coming up here they'lll take me to jail and my baby to DEFAX. Please tell me how to escape this hell.

By Severa

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