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This forum offers parents the opportunity to voice their own experiences of international parental child abduction, and related issues, and to share useful information with others in a similar situation.

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Giving up children

by Molly / Posted 30/03/2009 / Updated 09/07/2010

I hate how that subject reads, I find myself increasingly cowed by my husband, he tells me itīs me - not him. That; Iīm a bad mother, horrible wife and put everyone but him and "our family" first. It is becoming increasingly hard for me to stay focused on my job and to keep my temper when all I want to do is pack up and leave and am in fact starting to believe that he is right - that I am all those things he tells me I am. I feel that I should leave him and the kids and return to the UK. I know if i do this however that he will never allow them to see me, and will poison them against me. I donīt know what is the hardest, staying where there is no love and no support, heīs managed to get rid of friends and family is far away, UK for me and other states for him. And I donīt know what is the best thing to do for me and the kids, then theres the Hague Convention, and I canīt just abduct the children. I am seeing a therapist and we are together seeing one as I left him last year and went to a shelter with the kids. That Iīm not allowed to forget. I feel that I am going mad! Does anyone have anything remotely similar?


From Awatif / Posted: 02/04/2009
Hi,ur story is very familiar, I have been there, and from reading ur message, I can tell ur a good mum, but ur partner managed to make u believe that ur nothing. Psychological torture is far worse than any other type of abuse. think really hard about what is best for u and ur children and act on it. donīt let anyone belittle u and the great job u do to bring up ur children. be strong, and I wish u good luck. donīt let ur partner bully u, look for the sign and reflect how u want ur life to be. best wishes
From Suzanne / Posted: 02/04/2009
Molly, would like you to know that there are sadly many other mothers who feel like you. I have been through similar, and still going through it. I dont know which country you are having to live in, I am in Italy and feel trapped here too with my two young sons in order to keep them near to the one person who tried to destroy the very fabric of our family,of their mother and of course, with serious ripercussions on my children, also they themselves were harmed and continue to be harmed, that is, psychologically.
I held out and found it extremely hard but then went through the right channels to ask for permission to return to the UK with my sons, but to no avail. Sharing experiences does help. take care and try to be strong for your children.
From magdalena / Posted: 09/04/2009
molly, Iīve been where you are and Iīve reached the end or so I thought at the time - look up the website called
they helped me get things straight in my head and fight for my son heīs with me now and although things are far from being sorted, I feel much stronger in myself to be able to stand up to the bully of my ex-husband!!
it helps to know that how you feel is not unusual under these circumstances
From Claire / Posted: 10/04/2009
Hi Molly. You are far from alone. I too have been through a ´leave to remove´ case and, also, to no avail. Sadly, (understatement!) the confines of the law (the ´best interests of the child´ mandate) fail families living with emotional and physical abuse and protective parents are all too often forced into shared custody environments which serve only to empower the abuser and perpetuate the abuse. My advice, wherever you are, is that if you need to leave then go back to a women´s shelter taking your kids with you. If you want the ´system´ to help you (ie: you want a chance to get home and/or you want a safe visitation order from the court), then you must get the ´system´ on your side from the start. So, though it is perfectly natural to want to return home, leave any notion of fleeing to the UK aside for now and concentrate your energies on building a safe, healthy environment for you and your kids. I know how hard it is living in a foreign country, without a support network et al but remember, you are NOT what a controlling, undermining & angry man says you are. You and your kids deserve the right to live in peace and with respect. You can do it! If you want to talk things through you are welcome to contact me too! N.B. There really needs to be some kind of network set up to assist expatriate protective parents sharing information more directly. It is an extremely difficult and lonely situation to be in that need not be so - If anyone is interested, please, contact me.
From ac / Posted: 14/04/2009
Hi Molly. Your situation is difficult and sadly not unique. Modern life increasing means we meet people from different countries and when things go wrong the natural instinct is to move back īhomeī. Relationships are hard at the best of times but should never lead to either parent losing their children. Its obvious that a caring partner should not belittle the person they are supposed to love and want to be with but stress makes people behave in very unknown ways. You are already doing a good thing seeing a therapist, I hope it help you find the cause of your problems. I donīt think walking away is the answer; it will impact the children for the rest of their life and give them a blueprint for their life. Think hard and ask your husand to do the same, tell him you only walked away before because you felt you had no choice and the important thing is you came back. Try hard to resolve your problems and do things that bring you both closer to ensure your relationship survives. I wish you all the best and hope everything works out. ac
From molly / Posted: 15/12/2009
Thank you everyone, for suggestions and support.

I am still with my husband, his anger seems to be escalating, we had a family visit and he became very angry and pulled the bed clothes off while I was trying to sleep, and then pinned my arms behind my back and shoved me onto the bed - I am afraid to trust him with my feelings, and he wants to know the deepest feelings I have, he doesn´t trust me with anything, so essentially we are stuck in a no win situation. As long as I can figure out how to keep my children safe and warm and fed, then I will do it. It was his birthday this weekend and NOTHING was right, I bought the wrong things, they were too expensive, I didnīt plan enough fun things, there was no cake, not enough people to celebrate - if you ostracize people they wonīt want to help celebrate.
From lizzy / Posted: 10/01/2010
sounds to me that you are dealing with a very controlling covert aggressive person.. Maybe you should seek help for yourself inorder to help you to stand up to this man before things get worse.. Your not stuck in any situation , you are just not sure how to get out of it..l can understand that your first instincts are for your children, but i feel from reading what you have put, that you seem to be the one in danger here.. hope all goes well..
From Suzanne / Posted: 12/01/2010
Molly, I have written before and even though I am no longer living with the father of my children, he still hounds me in every way possible.... you are not alone and i feel deeply for your position as it seems, like me, you are not in your home country and so things are much worse. Can you tell me where you are currently living?
From Molly / Posted: 26/01/2010
Lizzy - thank you, I am getting help from a counselor we are working on how to get me away. Today is a really bad day.

Suzanne, I am in the united states.
From Michelle Townsend / Posted: 30/01/2010
I dont know what country you are in - but if you are in the EU then there are domestic violence laws in place - just as there are in the UK. I do not know your history - have you spoken to a lawyer about the domestic violence - do the court know everything about this. did the refuge provide a report for the courts. Please let me know what country you are in. Kind Regards

From lynn higbee / Posted: 03/02/2010
hi molly, my heart goes out to you, i was returned back to spain to my partner, we are currently back together and working on our issues, it is not perfect but day by day week by week things are improving. get as much help and support from where you are, do your homework, protect yourself and your kids, and have the knowledge of the law of where you are. i am concerned that things for you may esculate to something that could be dammageing to not only to you but your children. to leave to return to england you need permishion of the courts, but only you know whats going on behind closed doors. keep your strength, and i wish you luck for your future and the future of your children.
From karina / Posted: 09/07/2010
molly you need evidence. and lots of it.. Its great getting help but alot of the time its us who are penalized by the system. I know cuz I´m living in a refuge right now.

So first thing is to gain proof of his abuse. Document. each time it is witnessed have friends write a letter there and then. Have people on the street write letters if they see it there. Start going to a therapist. who can see his behavior and document it.. perhaps even give witness that this is bad for your child to see.
If he does anything to your child then report it straight away by getting as much proof as possible. This is essential because these types will def. have contact visits unless you can prove he is harm to the child (even child abusers (uk) have been known to have unsupervised contact visits over here)

Then when you leave him apply to the court to return to your home country.

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