Thursday, May 28, 2015

New Directions: Coming Out of a Marriage

Agent Zoey is going in a new direction. While still chronicalling my life with my children I will now be writing about my experience with divorce and narcissistic ex's. My marriage was very good at times and very bad at times. There was emotional abuse, physical abuse and cheating. Here is a brief overview before I delve into specifics (if I can remember them).

During my 20 year marriage my ex cut me off from several of my good friends by picking arguments with them. I was too embarrassed to try to fix the friendships telling myself he must know better than me. I endured scary rages including ones directed at me for having depression and not getting myself out of it. He threw our oldest around because he was a difficult child (diagnosed with anxiety and Asperger's) and one time threw his coffee on our son. These were red flags I ignored. I was embarrassed to take him to get togethers with my friends because he would sit off to the side and pout. I then avoided these situations because I couldn't have one more person ask what was wrong with him and try to make up an explanation. He complained about my siblings. Judging them harshly and I blindly followed as he subtly made negative comments and judgements about them which resulted in my losing my relationships with them.
When he had what he said was an emotional affair with one of my best friends he told me via email. When I tried to get him to go to counseling he said there's nothing the therapist could say that he didn't already know. When I tried to talk to him about it for my healing he refused saying its in the past - get over it. He said he had no interest rehashing the past. My inability to process the affair led to depression which just made him more mad. The anger outbursts got worse, the yelling got louder, the words more hurtful and I felt worthless. The threats of divorce started to become very frequent with apologies in between leading me to feel like I was in a game of Russian roulette. I never knew when the scary side of him would emerge. I was in a constant state of fight or flight.
There were other incidents where I suspected he was cheating but when I tried to talk to him about it he got extremely angry and shut me down. I later found out I was right about the cheating.
Fast forward to 2013. He came home one November afternoon and handed me divorce papers. No explanation. No talking it through. I found out he had started dating someone a month prior. When I found out about the cheating I slapped him. One Friday afternoon I open the front door to a processor who told me I had 20 minutes to pack up and get out of the house or I'd be arrested. My ex had taken a restraining order against me and taken custody of our daughter. When I finally stopped sobbing enough to read the order it said I had sucker punched him, was suicidal and was sending him threatening texts. ALL LIES!
I was only allowed supervised visits with my daughter two times a week.
My son was an adult and he would come visit me every day.
Fast forward to the restraining order hearing. My ex testified first. He spouted the same lies but couldn't prove any of them. No threatening texts to show. He tried to submit pictures of a bleeding lip claiming he was bleeding profusely through his nose. My lawyer countered that claim and proved he was lying. When asked about my being suicidal he told a story from 3 years ago when I had a neck injury and I told him I wanted to run my car into a brick wall so I could be in the hospital and not have to take care of my responsibilities (I was the bread winner and sole caretaker of the kids). My therapist was there ready to testify that I had never been suicidal, even in my darkest depression. But she didn't have to testify. After my ex was done testifying the judge said there was no proof to his claims and that any appeals court would jump down her throat if she granted his order. She also awarded me attorney's fees which a friend in the courthouse said she NEVER does.
I went home (we were still living together) and he was visibly angry. He told me I had to stay in my room unless the kids were in the kitchen/living room.
Fast forward to the day I moved out. My ex cried and said it was the saddest day of his life.
More to come...

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