Help? Pregnant, stuck with verbally abusive father of baby

Sam - posted on 09/24/2014 ( 4 moms have responded )




Where do I even begin..?

So, I'm 24 and 22 and a half weeks pregnant. I'm living with the father, who's being extremely unsupportive in the least, verbally and emotionally abusive at worst. Up until a week ago, we were together, and I was basically a homemaker with Asperger's Syndrome and bad agoraphobia. Let me just say that we live in a rural area, I have no license, no GED, no money and no family at all. The only person I know who could take me in is 2 hours north and they have three cats (I'm horribly allergic), so my situation is pretty crap. I'm stuck.

He's also an addict and a felon and abuses pretty much anything and sells sometimes. Honestly, I thought people make mistakes, its not about his past. But I begged him to get help with his addiction. And I ignored his selling.

We'd always had a rocky relationship, but I loved him so I put up with a lot of his crap. I didn't even realize he was being a bit abusive. I had come to feel guilty and responsible for his addiction and for the stress of being the breadwinner, even though he constantly told me it didn't matter - he loved me. So, I didn't really talk to anyone about his behavior, but basically at some point he started resenting me and blaming me for his stress at work (among other things). He was either getting high with his friends all the time, or at home, or he would come home and treat me like crap. I guess a cycle started. But there were good periods of time. :/

For the past week, he has been extremely awful to live with. Screaming at me some days, saying he's cutting me off, I need to grow up and blaming me for everything. He almost got us into a car accident last week and said I need to deal with it, because I don't have a license. Other days, he completely ignores me and pretends I don't exist. And then sometimes he's tolerable. I had an appointment for my 20 week ultrasound today, but he made other plans, so I had to reschedule and we ended up getting into a huge fight about it, where he shouted at me, called me a b----, because I said his friends and drugs shouldn't be more important than the baby. At that point, I threatened to call the police and he laughed and said they wouldn't come out for verbal abuse. I think he had been drinking. :/

He comes home later, with $100 worth of new clothing from Rue21, acts like nothing happened, and brings food. Then, he tells me to put money on the phone, so I can have a cell phone (I don't have one). He's acting tolerable. But then I brought up whether or not I could ask him for money. He says depends what for. I say I need clothing, my underwear doesn't fit, nor do my bras, pants and shoes. He's almost agreeable. But then he says I could be getting money from the government. I say no, they count his income, even if we're not a couple, because we live under the same roof. Suddenly, he begins yelling at me again, telling me I am dumb and stubborn and I need to just do it (being call and get aid, don't include his income). I say I won't, that's lying and I could get in serious trouble. So, now he won't pay for anything.

I don't know what to do. I have no where to go. I cannot even fathom being homeless. I'm so humiliated and terrified. This is not what I imagined for my life. I'm so confused. Just a month ago we were supposed to get married and be a family. Now he looks at me like I'm disgusting and its my fault his life is so horrible. He says my Autism was too much for him to handle, I was an "inconvenience" to him and he got sick of having to consider me all the time. That he was miserable and unhappy and taking care of me meant not taking care of himself. Things just weren't working out. But his moods were erratic. I don't even know what was the truth or a lie.

We discussed custody last week and I said I would want the baby to live with me, to which he agreed. And we discussed the naming and last name. He seemed taken aback, like he hadn't thought of any of it. But now, I don't even know, because he's been so abusive to me. We talked about it yesterday when he was more stable. We have nothing for the baby at all, and he starts telling me about how he spent $140 on a vaporizer. I think I almost self-combusted right there. He had JUST gone out multiple times this weekend. I know he spent something like $200. I have no idea where he got the money. He JUST borrowed money from his mother for an oil change and told her I was hiding money from him, which he had previously given me permission to stash away money for the baby. And then he tells me about how he and his friends are going to grow (in this house) and sell weed, or at least just grow it for himself. I told him I wouldn't feel comfortable with him being high around the baby and he blows me off, saying he gets high at work all the time.

I don't know what to do. I just don't. This is the type of area where you NEED a car. Absolutely need one to get anywhere. My doctor is 45 minutes away. I was already thinking of leaving, as terrified to do it as I am. Or I was thinking I could stay and deal and get the things I need first (like new glasses, maybe a license, get him to sign papers). He's not always horrible. He doesn't hit me. He feeds me.. :/ I know, that sounds pretty pathetic.

I'm terrified he would fight me for the baby. I don't know if this is a plus or not, but he says he wants to be a part of their life, but I don't think he's really understand the gravity of a baby. And not just because he's a guy. I mean, going by the fact that we have nothing for the baby and he's spending so recklessly.

Should I apply for government aid even while living with him?

Anyone ever been in a similar situation? What did you do? What happened after you left? How did you get anywhere? What are shelters like? How did you eat or clothe yourself and the baby?


Guest - posted on 09/26/2014




It doesn't matter WHY you don't have a GED--it only matters that you don't have one. Unless the reason you don't have one is something that you can change in order to get one (and in this case it isn't), then there is no reason to dwell on it. Just accept that you don't have one, and start taking the steps you need to take to get one.

It doesn't matter WHY you are currently in this relationship--it only matters that you are in it, and you need to get out, so there really is no need to dwell on why you stayed so long, just start focusing on taking the steps you need to take to get out.

You cannot change the past, so the past doesn't matter. You CAN change the future with actions you take in the presence.

ASD is a difficult thing to live with. It is very possible that it contributed to fact that it took you a long time to realize he was abusive. That IS something you can change by getting the proper treatment. I know that not treatment can make the symptoms of ASD go away, but treatment CAN help you manage those symptoms in ways that will keep you safe from this sort of thing again. It doesn't sound like you are getting the treatment you need.

The great times in between the bad times is a classic cycle of abuse. After an abusive spell, there is almost always a period of time that we call "The Honeymoon Phase" which can last anywhere from a couple of days to a few months, after which, the abuser either gradually becomes more and more abusive again, or simply snaps all at once--depending on the abuser. This is one of the biggest reasons victims stay with their abusers. During those Honeymoon phases, the abuser can be the most thoughtful, caring, considerate, wonderful person on Earth....until he gets abusive again. That tricks the victim into thinking she has made progress in changing his ways, or that there is a good person beneath the abusive personality (There is no good person hiding in there--this is just another way to exert control).
Don't blame yourself for staying, just get out now.

Think long and hard about the man you want as the biggest role model in your child's life. Is this the kind of man you want your daughter to think she should marry? That it is okay for her husband to treat her the way he treats you? Is this the kind of man you want your son to be? That he should treat his wife the way this man treats you? I think not.

Get out. File for custody.


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Sam - posted on 09/25/2014




Thinking back on it, I realized it started slowly. Little things he would say or the way he would act. He was stressed at work, so I let it pass most of the time. He wasn't horrible all the time and I could be myself with him. I didn't have to pretend, he didn't make fun of me for issues I have. I was dead set on making it work. I thought if I would talk to him, things would work out. I don't know what I was thinking. I loved him. That was it.

It also may be relevant that I grew up with parents who were also addicts and abusers.

I bring up my ASD only because it is me. And its relevant to why I put up with a lot of it. I honestly didn't connect his moods as bad, because he said he loved me, and his work is extremely stressful. A lot of it was guilt over not being able to function better, I thought he was right and I deserved some of the things he would say.

I stopped going to school because there was a lot of physical, verbal and emotional violence at home. And at school, I couldn't keep up with the other students, or the homework and I was getting bullied a lot. I tried reaching out for help a couple of times to my parents, but they wouldn't listen. The final straw was when a teacher called me stupid and told me not to do anything in class, there was no point. I took him literally. I believed him. He was the adult, he must be right. I was already hearing worse things at home about how I was an embarrassment to my mother and I just curled in on myself and stopped leaving my room. I'm not here to debate other people or Asperger's in general, just mine. I had had issues functioning in school (and at home) as soon as I was put into school.

I never said I didn't want him in our child's life, its exactly the opposite. But how can that be possible when he sees absolutely nothing wrong with being high around a baby? Or on how he's treating me even though I'm pregnant? I just want him to get help. Until just this past week, he said he WAS going to get help.

It was actually pretty easy to ignore his selling because he didn't tell me.. I didn't find out until we had already been together for awhile. I told him I wasn't okay with it. He told me he wasn't doing it anymore, then it turned into every once in awhile and then it was sometimes.

And about enabling him to get high. I never said I was okay with it, I constantly said I wasn't okay with it. I sympathized with WHY he gets high, but I also relayed that he was an addict and he couldn't control himself.

Part of my brain understands and thinks I may need to get out. The other part thinks this is all my fault. I'm terrified of what will happen. Its the same type of thinking I had/still have when I'm in the presence of my parents. I don't know how to break it.

Guest - posted on 09/25/2014




You know what you need to do. You need to leave.

A rural place is not a good place for someone without a car to live because those areas are very car dependent. You need to move to a more pedestrian friendly town or city with public transportation.
A rural place is also not a good place for someone diagnosed with agoraphobia--for one, it is easy for the disease to grow there, secondly, it is difficult to get many of the things you need delivered.
So, specifically, what you need to do is call your local women's shelter--they usually have volunteers willing to come pick up those who cannot drive--pack your bags, and move to a walk able town or city. Next, you need to begin work on your GED--there are free websites you can use to help you study and computers with internet access available at the local libraries (and some shelters). At the same time, you need to secure a job, or if you are unable to work, secure social assistance for food, utilities, and housing.

Once approved for funding, you need to find a place to live. The shelter can help you find places that will accept the funding you have.

Lastly, you need to work with an attorney to file court papers establishing custody, visitation, and child support orders for your child between you and the child's father.

♫ Shawnn ♪♫♫ - posted on 09/25/2014




1) “I'm living with the father, who's being extremely unsupportive in the least, verbally and emotionally abusive at worst” : This didn’t ‘just start’. Why did you stay?
2) “, I have no license, no GED, no money”…Again, why is this? These are choices that you made, to not finish HS, to not get a license…Aspberger’s is a condition, not an excuse. A person with Aspberger’s is not disabled, and can be a fully functioning member of society.
3) “He's also an addict and a felon and abuses pretty much anything and sells sometimes. Honestly, I thought people make mistakes, its not about his past. But I begged him to get help with his addiction. And I ignored his selling.”…Once an addict, always an addict. I know, I’m married to a recovered crack/meth addict. He’s been clean for over 25 years. THE DIFFERENCE? He committed himself to being clean. You enabled your partner to not only continue his drug abuse, but also support it by dealing. Ignoring a situation does not fix it.

Since you’ve complacently allowed yourself to get into this situation, you will need to work to get out of it. Even in rural areas, there is assistance available. Get yourself out, get assistance, get paperwork started for custody/support/visitation now…and finalize it once paternity is proven. Yes, he does have the right to be involved and co parent.

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