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Newly Separated and some Questions

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I am very newly separated, about 36 hours actually. My husband was taken by the police in a drunken state after years of emotional abuse and  bullying and a day of physical intimidation where he stopped just short of actual physical violence.  I am, of course still raw and upset, and after 16 years of marriage and at the age of 50 with two children aged 12 and 13 am looking at a whole new life (I have been out of the workforce for 20 years).

Sadly the kids witnessed his behaviour the other day in spite of mine and the police best efforts to get them to go to another place on the property.  As my husband was led away he gave my daughter, 13, a "dirty" look as if to somehow blame her for what was happening. Both children broke down in sobs of course and I reassured them that this was nothing to do with them at all. (My daughter has had behavioural issues lately which caused friction between my husband and me, mainly him blaming me). My question now is, the children at the age they are, have seen his behaviour first hand and while I hope that in the future when things calm down, they can have a loving relationship with their father, as I know he does love them, what do I say to them that doesn't make excuses for him, but that somehow explains it all?  He fought the police and was, and is I daresay very angry as he can't seem to take responsibility for his behaviour.  He has also left us with no money, he emptied the joint account and changed the passwords and they know this.  The money is not the problem, that can be fixed, but for them to know he's left us like this out of spite is really hard on them.  I will never badmouth their father to them, they are intelligent and can make up their own minds, but neither will I sugarcoat what he's done, I've tried to do that for too long.

I hope this is the right place to post, I am still in a spin, and living in a new town have no support close by.

Any suggestions gratefully received.
 Hi FLOSS59, This is probably not the right site for you to post on, this is for Family Law questions , which if in the future you have is a great place to come.

                   My suggestion to you would to get some counselling for you and your kids. The government has a programme in place called  "the Better Access to Mental Health Initiative." You can get a referral form from your G.P.

                   It is free to certain groups one of them being "youth", so your kids would qualify. It gives 12 free sessions with a psychologist / social worker , and under this initiative the referral must be seen within one month.

                    From your post I think it would help and after being subjected to the things in your relationship I would say from personal experience you need to find the strength to realise you deserve better and so when your ex comes begging for you to take him back (and he will ) you will be in a place mentally to say NO!!
Thanks so much BeautifulDay, information much appreciated.
       Just to add some more details from my last post…..

       The form is called a  "BOMH-ATAPS Referral Form"  (You can google that to get alot more info)

        The 4 groups that qualify for this great initiative are :

       *Financially Disadvantaged

       *Youth

       *Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander

       *Peri-natal Depression

        My children were recommended to this service by the Family Consultant at The Family Law Court.

        The G.P had a big list of providers of this service in many locations specializing in many areas.

        All the best
Hi Floss59, justin here,

I agree with some of what beautifulDAY has said other than this is not the right site for you. That depends on where you think you want to be in 5 yrs time. (Place to live like close to your family for help and support, or close to a good supply of work or emergency housing, job you would like you can do, jobs you will do even though you may not like them and the like.)

By that, I don't mean set it in concrete where you are going to be, but write down 2 or 3 possible where you would like to be, where it would be good for you and the children to be, and if you do nothing and he comes back, where you think you could be.

DON'T put any of that on this site, it is for you to help your head stop spinning.

My next place to call would be Centerlink for financial support, register for work and possable single mums help. They might also help with the counselling.

So you are properly informed, go to the Family Law Web site and look through their publications. Follow this link http://www.familylawco…ct/FLC/Home/Publications/     

If he does not come back or you refuse to let him come back you have steps to follow before you can make Orders regarding "who the children live with" and "who the children spend time with", these are 2 phrases the Court uses regarding children and their rights to know all their family members.

If you are married then you may want a divorce and property settlement or if de-facto then just a property settlement.

For help with this above said, this is the site you should be on but join the SRL-R group at this link http://flwg.com.au/srl…hp&keep_session=757249759 and send a request to join when you can answer their questions. This way you can get private information for your case, this includes how to start your case/matter if that is the way you both want to go.

Also read through the topics on this site some may help you as you are not the first or last for these things to happen too, you may be surprised at how large the group of people are who have been or are in a similar boat to you.

Good luck and please just take it 1 day at a time, there are others out there more than willing to help you when you ask the right questions at the right time.

justin  
Hi Floss59

Your question, "What do I say to them that doesn't make excuses for him?"

Have you thought about educating your children on "domestic violence"? To do this I would obtain a "domestic violence" brochure which can be picked up from a community health centre, or family relationship centres or a court, even Centrelink, which you can give to your children to read. Teach your children about domestic violence that people often behave in ways which is not appropriate, for example, shouting and hitting others, and other stuff such as withholding money, and that this behaviour can result in hurting others especially those whom the person is close to and loves very much such as the person's husband, wife, and children. Educate your children that it is not normal behaviour, and that people who behave like this need help to not behave like that but to find new and appropriate ways of expressing themselves which will not hurt people.

Hopefully you will seek domestic violence counselling yourself. I wish you well, Calista.

First they ignore you, then they laugh at you, then they fight you, then you win.  M K Gandhi
Foss59 - This site has a lot of information about support services such as child support and family assistance which may be of some assistance as well as Family Law.

Reassuring the children that it is not their fault for what has happened is very important. I also think they are old enough to understand some of the issues that you and your husband are having together and that he turns to drink to deal the stress caused by the issues and not because he might be a 'bad' person.

It's better if they see that you both have problems agreeing and that he is not the cause of all the problems. They will also be aware of the times when you agree and work together.

Good luck
I would recommend that you all seek counseling especially as you have stated that the emotional abuse and bullying have been going on for years. The children more than likely have underlying issues that need to be brought to light. You yourself may have esteem and dependency issues given what you have said. Your husband would have to decide to attend counseling on his own terms. Don't forget your friends, they are there to help you through this. You may find that some friends mutual to your husband and yourself won't want to be "stuck in the middle".

I hope this advice has been helpful to you. Please remember it is only advice and need not be taken:)
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