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Girls & Guys PG-13
Abusive ex and me finally standing up for myself TRIGGER WARNING: abuse, rape, language
By Damhnaitmember has saluted, click to view salute photosPremium member Comments: 691, member since Sun Apr 22, 2007
On Wed Mar 05, 2014 11:23 AM
Locked by Damhnait (177844) on 2014-04-09 23:31:11 Didn't talk to him since this, deleted his number a day after this, he texted me a week ago to tell me he broke my stuff and call me horrible things. Situation's over I suppose.

Not allowing me to post more than 10 images, his last response in the 10th picture finishes as "I'm done listening and responding after this. You're still stuck in your almighty Brenda persona, and I know there's no getting through to you past this point."

This will be long. Posting, because I finally feel like I stood my ground and just want to share because I'm proud for it.

Long story, long fight. The backstory goes back to my ex, Travis, who was diagnosed bi-polar and probably something else since his mood swings left him violent. This guy would even flip out and start hitting his mom if she asked him to do something he didn't want to do. I dated him from when I was 15 to 18. Our first time we had sex was me saying no and him going along with it, but I was young and figured that's what's supposed to happen in relationships. I don't really think of it as rape, it's kind of a grey line for me, but my next boyfriend, Andrew classified that it was. A few years later, there was a pregnancy scare and Travis actually hit me hard in the gut "just to be sure". When I met Andrew my first year of college, he was a godsend. Sweetest man ever. But I was still dating Travis. I wanted out of that relationship, but Travis was very controlling and I was afraid of him. Soon I grew to love Andrew too much and, after a stint where Travis showed up to mine and Andrew's orchestra concert and proceeded to wait for two hours alone in the parking lot until we left, following Andrew's truck for a good mile, I broke up with Travis. I was afraid he'd hurt himself, Andrew, or me, but I finally got out. He stalked me for a bit, but I haven't heard from him for years.

But the day I broke up with Travis, Andrew was about to end it all, and still did that night, but this started a whole new era of hurt. Andrew came back two days later, then broke up with me a week later. Broke up with me for two weeks, came back for two months, broke up with me for three months, came back for 6, broke up with me again.... it was a rough cycle. Each break up he'd say the most hurtful things, he can't do this anymore, he never loved me, etc, and every time he came back he'd say the sweetest: "I've always loved you." "how could I be so stupid to let you out of my life" etc.

I guess you could say Andrew and I dated for about three years, minus the break ups. Collectively it probably only adds up to a little less than a year. While we were together, he'd be so sweet and then slowly turn sour. I'd ask him if it was alright for me to spend the night and he'd tell me "it's up to you" and when I did, I'd hear an earful the next week about how disrespectful I was and how I was never invited to stay, etc. Once, I told him I was starting therapy because of how timid I was around him and I didn't know why to sort things out. He broke up with me 16 hours before my first session saying I lost my confidence and I'm not the same person anymore and he "just can't do this anymore". We were broken up for 6 months where I was devastated. This must've been 5 or so breakups in, and I really didn't have any confidence. I kept telling myself I was the problem and that there was something wrong with me that "I couldn't even keep the man I love". I found out through a mutual friend he was calling me his "crazy ex girlfriend" and I got worse. I stopped eating, I stopped sleeping, I quit dance, I skipped college classes. I just... existed. Therapy only helped some days, even after upping it to every week instead of every other.

Then the next January, January of 2013 so I'm 20 and he's 23, he started talking to me again. He invited me over after about a month of talking online and through text and told me how he's always loved me, and didn't know he could have found the person he wanted to be with when he was so young, etc. We had sex that night, met up the next day to go shopping, and the day after that I asked him if we were together again. He got all quiet and said "I don't know. I don't want to rush this." And stopped talking to me for two weeks. Talked to me again before school started and the first weekend into school I asked again, what are we. We keep meeting up and having sex, what are we. "I don't know". Stopped talking to me for a few weeks. Valentines day, meet up, touchy feely, stopped talking for two weeks, shows up to my dorm (I didn't have a roommate), sex, stopped talking. This continued the entirety of spring semester at a school I just transferred to that semester and knew no one. He wouldn't invite me out with his friends, he wouldn't actually invite me out anywhere. I'd suggest we go places and the only time he agreed was when it was well past midnight. But I wanted to believe something could happen from it. He had a game of mine and my friend's movie from when we still lived together and they were in his dorm. Sometimes he'd jokingly text me and say "your movies are still here, putz" and I'd go over only for touching and sex to happen and then I'd be shooed out until a few weeks later.

One day in April he came to my room, had sex, and got up and left right away. He texted me soon after asking if I want to grab food and when I met up with him ("he actually wants me out with him in public and not just our dorms!") he stopped me and told me he's only been using me for sex. That he doesn't see us together, that this needs to end, etc. Of course I was heartbroken, again. I failed my exam the next day because I hadn't slept that night.

A few months later he invites me to his apartment he's subleasing as I come up for a job interview saying he's worried about me driving home at night. I told him I'd be fine, but he insisted, and I really wanted something to work. He said he had a futon I could sleep on and everything. I get there and immediately he's touchy-feely. I ask what's going on since the last time I saw him he told me he was only using me. He said he wasn't truthful that night because he thought we needed to move on and didn't know what else to say. I asked if he thought we still needed to move on and he turned away and said "I don't know." Continue on and off flings every few weeks followed by silence until July.

It was the night before my 21st birthday and I was gearing up to spend it alone. My roommates I had only met a month before were heading to Chicago, one for an army thing, the other for a religious thing, and wouldn't be home. The friends I invited up got sick, had work, were going somewhere with family, etc. The only person over 21 around was Andrew, and he wasn't talking to me. He told me he already made plans to hang out with other friends. That night I was texting my friend Amanda and I was in such a tizzy. I don't remember much, but I was saying very suicidal things and even had things ready... Amanda called the cops to my door that night. I was mad at the time, but I'm so thankful she did. Andrew didn't know, he didn't need to. The next two days I don't remember. I went to work, came home, sat on my laptop, went to sleep. But two days after my birthday I met up with some friends and my roommate that was moving some things in where I ended up meeting my now-boyfriend, Corey. Corey and Andrew knew each other since they're in the same major, but they weren't really friends.

Andrew stopped talking to me for weeks before and after school started, and I fell in love with Corey who was there for me every day and listened intently to all the fears and sorrows I had going on at the time.

In January of this year, Andrew texted me telling me how he missed me and hated himself for "throwing" me away, and said he was glad I was finally happy with someone because I "deserved that for far too long". I told him I'm not mad at him, but that I'll always be his friend if he needs one. Heard nothing more after that.

The other day, my friend Nicole messaged me about a home-movie I had of hers from highschool called Silent Movie the Musical. It was her only copy and the computer that had the original file was long gone. I realized Andrew still had it in his dorm, and I told her I'd get ahold of Andrew to get it back. That's where this conversation starts.

I know I could've said and handled some things better, there are some things I wish I would've said instead, or some I wish I didn't say at all, but overall I am so, so happy that after three years of being terrified and crying and being beaten down I finally stood up for myself. Nothing changed. I told Nicole about this and she said if I can't get the movie then don't, my safety is more important. So at this point if I get my stuff, great, but if I don't I'll just let it go. If I did get it, I already have two friends, both male, who said they'd accompany me if I decide to go.

Seriously, my mom, Amanda, and so many of my other friends who saw this unfold from the very beginning are so proud of me for finally standing up to myself instead of agreeing everything is my fault. I don't know what gave me that strength other than I am finally in a good relationship with a supportive and loving boyfriend and slowly but surely I'm feeling confident with myself, my looks, my personality, and my pride, that I was finally able to tell Andrew everything I needed to for three years.

I think the only reason I needed to post this was just to make it all seem a little more real. I had two awful relationships, one physically abusive, another emotionally, and I've finally healed from both. I'm no longer depressed or suicidal, and a friend I met last semester in the dorms says she's proud that I can go through so much and still hold a smile on my face.

Emotional abuse is very real. Your significant other can be super clingy and be emotionally abusive, or they can abandon you time after time the moment your smile fades into a sigh, and say such things when they come back that you're stuck on an emotional rollercoaster, being pushed down more and more each time.

By all means ask questions if something doesn't make sense or something seems missing, I probably left a lot out trying to cram 6 years into as short a post as possible.

11 Replies to Abusive ex and me finally standing up for myself TRIGGER WARNING: abuse, rape, language

re: Abusive ex and me finally standing up for myself TRIGGER WARNING: abuse, rape, language
By Heartmember has saluted, click to view salute photosPremium member Comments: 15032, member since Thu Feb 14, 2002
On Wed Mar 05, 2014 05:51 PM
I don't think you handled that well at all. It should have been strictly business. He responded nicely and politely and said that he would get you the videos when he had the time to look for them. You can't possibly expect someone you haven't talked to in a year to drop everything and go searching for something of yours that's god-knows-where. You're the one who blows it up out of proportion and turns it into a fight, and all he does the entire situation is try to defuse it until you push him and provoke him into getting angry. Now you probably won't get your videos back, when if you'd just left it, he likely would have returned him.

I know it's hard to deal with abusive exes but this was not well done and should not be regarded as a success. He lets you know that you're being inappropriate, and even after you go off on him, he tries to end the conversation and says that he'll return the items. And you still keep going, after he tries to end the conversation again and again. You actively keep provoking him, goading him with something you know will piss him off: comparing him to your ex.

It's not mature. This isn't standing up for yourself or standing up to him, it's diving back into a toxic relationship because you can't handle a simple "hey, I need this. When you get the time, please give it back." This conversation should have been over in four texts, if that. He doesn't turn it into anything - YOU do.

If that's what you wanted, then sure. That isn't healthy for you emotionally, though. You're clearly not over him, and to get there you have a whole lot more you need to work on.
re: Abusive ex and me finally standing up for myself TRIGGER WARNING: abuse, rape, language
By schuhplattlerPremium member Comments: 3037, member since Sat Dec 23, 2006
On Wed Mar 05, 2014 06:59 PM
I predict that you will get your disks in a few days. He just need to cool off.
re: Abusive ex and me finally standing up for myself TRIGGER WARNING: abuse, rape, language
By Damhnaitmember has saluted, click to view salute photosPremium member Comments: 691, member since Sun Apr 22, 2007
On Wed Mar 05, 2014 09:14 PM
We last talked, as in going over to his place and having out as friends, this past October, 5 months ago. Since then there's been back and forth talk.

The thing is, he's not busy. Plain and simple, he's not. At the beginning of the semester he told me he dropped two classes in preparation for the role he was expecting to get, and didn't. A mutual friend asked if he was going to pick up those classes again and he said "maybe next semester". He doesn't have a job, and is pretty well known around campus for sitting online all day and night playing online RPGs. Even while dating, his "I'm really busy" line always equated to "I'm only 20 victories away from getting silver rank". He has such skewed memories of how things happened. His "I've tried giving them to you multiple times" was literally stopped a year ago after he used them as a means to get me to come over and then would brush them off as he was more focused on other things once I got there.

No, I already admitted I could've handled things differently, but for once in three years I was able to be firm about getting back property that is my friend's, not even his friend's, that is irreplaceable. He asked me to "recount on how important it is now almost a year later since then?" and I gave him the honest reason, that those are the last two things that connect us and that I want it over like he does. His "that was respectable" line is always what he'd say to me if I ever told him I couldn't come over because I was busy with other friends, or his way of segueing into how stupid I was for accidentally cutting myself on broken glass, or what he'd say to me after he yells at me for crying after breakups to tell me how I was overreacting. He said it to me again that night and I snapped. No, it wasn't right, but after three years of being pushed down to a point where I had to get therapy and medicated because there was literally nothing of myself that I loved anymore, I stood up for myself.

And what would he do after beating me down verbally like that for three years? Walk away. He'd hang up the phone, or get in his truck and leave. "I can't do this anymore" was his line every time we broke up. If I had a bad day, being silent because I was worried about my housing plans for the summer, but still smiled and laughed at his jokes, he'd notice I had thoughts elsewhere and told me things weren't working and he'd break up and leave. That's all he ever did to me, the moment I'd utter a "but..." to bring up my view of things all I ever got was "no, this is done" end of story. I wanted this over, and my friend wants her high school home movie. So as soon as he said "I'm done with this, don't reply" I should've just let it be like always and, like always nothing is resolved and he'd avoid me and I wouldn't get anything because that's how it's always been. In the past, I've had possessions at his house spanning break up cycles because if I asked for it back he'd tell me "I'll get it to you eventually" and six months later I got it back because he told me he loved me and I was invited to his house again.

So from current knowledge as well as past experience, he's not too busy to look in the closet of his dorm room for this movie, he always needs the last word before storming out of a situation and never following through, and that if I trust I'll get my things back, I generally won't until he comes around again, which isn't happening this time. For once I told him, no, I need you to understand that the zero respect you've had for me for the past three years, this is what you've made me go through since you've never actually listened long enough since I wasn't allowed to have any emotions beside "contently happy" around you, and I want it over and to never have to speak to you again, my friend needs her thing.

For three years I sat in silence while I had spit-flying-in-my-face insults of "This is YOUR fault, YOU made this happen, YOU'RE the reason we're going THROUGH this right now" and for once I said something back. Of course I snapped, no I didn't handle it the most eloquently. And for the record, that is a direct quote from when he would sit next to me day and night just talking on skype and facebook with another girl. If I tried to talk, he'd shoot me a glance, turn his computer away from me, and continue typing to her. One day, and I rehearsed it to keep it calm, I told him "Hey, I know it's wrong, but I am a little jealous of how much you're talking to ______. I'm not asking you to change anything, or stop talking to her or anything, I just want you to understand why I've been quiet lately since you asked earlier today. So you don't need to change anything, I just feel a little weird about it because I don't know her and I wish you'd talk to me as much as you talk to her..." And he started yelling at me at how I was jealous and when I didn't say anything and started to softly cry, he started in with the quote at the beginning of this paragraph.

I'm sorry... I guess this was a bad idea... My mom, best friend, roommate, roommates girlfriend, and my boyfriend were proud that for once I was able to stand my ground against him and be assertive for what I needed from him... I guess it was wrong...
re: Abusive ex and me finally standing up for myself TRIGGER WARNING: abuse, rape, language
By LoriCook Comments: 1762, member since Mon Aug 17, 2009
On Wed Mar 05, 2014 11:02 PM
You were played with like a cat plays with a mouse and it is clear you haven't worked through this. Trying to work through your anger by texting him isn't going to help. It just allows him to play with you some more. This isn't about your things, its about you wanting him to know how upset you are and wanting to hurt him back. Delete him from your life. Never contact him again. Buy the things you are missing off of eBay and talk to a professional about ways to be assertive with people in the future as well as how hurt and angry this person made you feel. Maybe you are already doing that, and good for you for getting help!

One rule of thumb I use regarding texts and emails, if there is any emotion that has to be conveyed, a call or face to face visit is in order. I would not recommend that with this guy. You cannot be friends. You cannot have a nice conversation. There is too much hurt there. He has to become non-existent for you to heal. Do not bring this toxic way of communicating into your new relationship.
re: Abusive ex and me finally standing up for myself TRIGGER WARNING: abuse, rape, language
By Damhnaitmember has saluted, click to view salute photosPremium member Comments: 691, member since Sun Apr 22, 2007
On Wed Mar 05, 2014 11:35 PM
Edited by Damhnait (177844) on 2014-03-05 23:42:11
I agree with everything you say, Lori, I wouldn't have contacted him at all, but the movie belonging to my friend Nicole can't be bought somewhere. It's a home movie she made with a mutual friend of ours who has since passed. It may be a dumb high school movie with poor acting and shoddy scripts, but our friend is in it, and this was the only burned copy. Andrew had it in the first place because I was watching it at his apartment when I lived with him and that was one of the items I would "eventually get back" from a previous break up. It's something that means something dear to both Nicole and I, granted she was better friends with the person in the video than I was, thus it means more to her.

I've already decided a while ago I'm cutting him out after he texted me a month and a half ago telling me about how he misses me. I started off this text as "Do you still have this, can I get it back soon". He starts pulling his usual "I'm too busy for your problems" spiel I get whenever we're broken up. I don't need that, and I don't need him making those coming back moves like he did a month or so ago. But this home movie is something special and it is, quite simply, irreplaceable. I can't just go to Ebay or Amazon to get another video starring a deceased friend.

Guys I'm sorry, I really screwed up here. I shouldn't have brought any of this up. I was proud, my family and friends were proud, that instead of letting him pull his usual crap I stood my ground once and for all. But you're all right, I screwed up. I shouldn't have tried to do any of this, I should have just played it like I always have and just waited for him to decide when I should get my things...
re: Abusive ex and me finally standing up for myself TRIGGER WARNING: abuse, rape, language
By LeSoulierVertmember has saluted, click to view salute photos Comments: 1392, member since Sat Feb 05, 2005
On Thu Mar 06, 2014 12:28 AM
Bottom line is that you both have major emotional issues that keep you from having functional relationships.

More therapy and less boys, girl.

I understand that from your perspective this looks like progress, but it isn't. You're both still using each other as an outlet to dump your emotional crap onto someone. If you'd really JUST wanted the DVD's back you would've said so and left it at that. Same goes for him. He's got his own baggage that he dumps on you as well, but that's not the point. He's not your concern. You need to stop using these situations as a way to bring up all your baggage that you're still latching to him as though it has to do with him. NEW FLASH: it doesn't have to do with him! AT ALL! Your issues are yours. Leave the boys out of it and get to the bottom of why YOU put YOURSELF in these situations and pick abusive, unavailable and manipulative men. Ragging on him for old stuff IS being the crazy ex-girlfriend, even if he did his share of abuse as well.


Get to work and and be honest with yourself. And keep going to therapy!
re: Abusive ex and me finally standing up for myself TRIGGER WARNING: abuse, rape, language
By Heartmember has saluted, click to view salute photosPremium member Comments: 15032, member since Thu Feb 14, 2002
On Thu Mar 06, 2014 01:02 AM
Guys I'm sorry, I really screwed up here. I shouldn't have brought any of this up. I was proud, my family and friends were proud, that instead of letting him pull his usual crap I stood my ground once and for all. But you're all right, I screwed up. I shouldn't have tried to do any of this, I should have just played it like I always have and just waited for him to decide when I should get my things...


Oh, don't try to play the emotional manipulation game here. Please. I've been there, I'm a freaking pro at it, and I can spot it from a mile away. Don't go pleading for sympathy because you want a pat on the back. Have more dignity than that.

If you show this to your therapist and think you did well, fine. If you think you took a step, fine. But it's a STEP.

You've progressed. Good. Keep progressing. You're not there yet.

A word of advice, though? You don't need the paragraphs of back story. It doesn't matter. That's when you know you're over it. Those are petty details you're getting bogged down in. Those long, long texts you're writing him? Not needed. Forget the past and face your eyes forward.

You're still living waaaaay in the past. Move on, girl.
re: Abusive ex and me finally standing up for myself TRIGGER WARNING: abuse, rape, language (karma: 1)
By LizDancermember has saluted, click to view salute photos Comments: 1140, member since Fri Jan 06, 2006
On Thu Mar 06, 2014 06:41 AM
You're all right that this could have been handled better, but I understand why Damhnait is proud. I'm glad you're making progress! Even if there's still more to go.

Here's a suggestion: could you put your friend Nicole in charge of getting her movie back from him? Even if she doesn't know him, give her his contact info & let her do it instead. I have a feeling he'd think twice about blowing off someone who isn't you. If she's polite but persistent & explains how much it means to her, I feel like that will be more effective than you trying to get it back. And, even better, it'll let you finally cut contact! Now that would really be some big progress.
re: Abusive ex and me finally standing up for myself TRIGGER WARNING: abuse, rape, language
By dancin_til_death Comments: 4381, member since Sat May 08, 2004
On Mon Mar 31, 2014 02:24 AM
Really these items are so important that it took you a year to reclaim them, and you had a chance to reclaim them before (March) and you didn't take it?? Then you get upset that he can't identify exactly where in his house they are ? Really? If you lent me the items over a year ago I would probably have difficulty placing where they were as well. Its a wonder he didn't throw them out.

Also you don't need to reclaim items to move on. You don't. What you need to do is cut ties. Honestly it makes you feel so much better. I remember a friend was talking to me about this abusive boyfriend I had a few years ago - I had completely severed all ties with him and I was actually really proud that it took me a few days to remember what his name was. Not just his last name, his first name too. That's how successful I was at blocking him out.
re: Abusive ex and me finally standing up for myself TRIGGER WARNING: abuse, rape, language
By foreverlostmember has saluted, click to view salute photos Comments: 1917, member since Sun Feb 15, 2004
On Wed Apr 02, 2014 11:13 AM
Honestly, Ive been in this same position...except I was your ex.

I believe he was being very cordial by even responding that he would look for it when he got the time.

After a year, these are just last ties to him, or a reason for you to still text him. Call it a loss and move on. If its someone elses stuff, buy them a replacement.

When all you want to do is move on yourself, it sucks to have someone keep popping up in your life for petty reasons, and picking fights.
re: Abusive ex and me finally standing up for myself TRIGGER WARNING: abuse, rape, language
By Abbers Comments: 22, member since Mon Mar 17, 2014
On Tue Apr 08, 2014 09:30 AM
I believe that you done the right thing you've stood up for your self keep it up but be carefull and stay safe

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