Abuse of love or simply just love?

It’s not until I’ve been separated from my husband for several months that I start to reflect and I’m shocked at what I allowed to go on in our relationship. From very early on he had conversations with people online that in my opinion were very suggestive and inappropriate. This continued throughout our 9 years together and right now I can think of 4 occasions that I know about. Then there were the public things too, I remember him posting on a social media site that love and marriage goes together like a chocolate fireguard shortly after we were married.

At the time these things were upsetting and hurtful. But now it’s the emotional impact and turmoil of his actions which is exhausting! He says that he wants to be friends and have an amicable relationship for our children. But then I get verbal abuse everytime there is something I don’t do right. Which leaves me feeling like I’m walking on eggshells.

We have two children together. Now I will admit myself that I am not the most tidy person. But I have priorities. And the kids always came first. He got a few weeks off after the birth of our first child and we were in that euphoric bliss. But it didn’t last. Soon the comments started “what have you been doing all day!” With the tone and the looks this statement translated was “why isn’t the house tidy, what have you been doing?” This continued, but it was something that I just became used to.

Then we began to want a second child. I fell pregnant quickly. This time I had no worries about my pregnancy or how I would cope with a new born. I had done this before and would manage fine. My biggest difference was that I now had 2 children under 3 and I was studying to progress my career. I got up with both children through the night and recovered from a natural labour.

This time my husband didn’t get as long off with us before going back to work. My first day by myself went well. We walked the dogs, my oldest child got to playgroup on time, dinner was on the table when my husband came home. And his first question was “what have you done all day, it’s a bit of a mess” which was closely followed by maternity leave isn’t that difficult and I could manage better than you. (This is the guy who has never had the kids by himself for more than 2 nights without getting his mother down to help… Just saying)

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When I talk to people about what I’ve experienced they often ask did he ever touch you or hurt you. I answer honestly no but I believe it was heading that way if we had stayed together. There were 2 occasions which makes me believe this. Before we officially separated I came home one night after being out with a friend. I was probably more confident as I’d had a few drinks and asked him to see his phone as I was sure he was cheating on me. His reaction I don’t think I’ll ever forget. He jumped out of bed and got right into my face with his body rigid and arms pushed back so he could shout at me louder. All I can remember is him telling me to leave and get out the house. I said I wasn’t leaving and went to bed. He came after me and pulled the covers off me screaming to get out of bed and leave. I did get out of bed, checked that the children were still asleep and phoned my parents to help me. I should have left that night but I was scared that since I had been drinking (he says he had 1 or 2, but I didn’t find this out till later) that the children would be considered unsafe.

The next time I have no idea what we were arguing about. Again he told me to leave and this was followed by him pushing shoulder. This was during the day, no alcohol involved so I know this time his behaviour was completely him.

Things were gradually getting worse between us and for some reason I was still fighting to save what we used to have. Then one day there was an odd conversation about if we would ever have more children. I can’t remember his exact comment. But it was along the lines that our current problems were already due to our second child coming along!

During all of this was my birthday. The year before I had surprised him by taking him away. So he reciprocated by doing the same for me. I remember sitting in the hotel room looking at him knowing it was over. He couldn’t sit next to me and couldn’t even look at me. We had became just friends, if that. The next morning at breakfast I was fully aware of this and started crying while in the dinning room. I left and sorted myself out before returning to finish breakfast. I remember thinking at the time that this didn’t even bother him, he just kept eating. Traveling home was awful as it was just fighting the whole way. And to make matters worse we were going home to his mum watching the kids and staying another night with us.

When we did finally admit that it was over and started to move on it didn’t make things easier overnight. There was still how we split up possessions, our house and finances. This in itself always annoyed me as he never disputed what happened with the children or how often he would see them. So soon we were arguing over money and how we would split it. One day when he brought the kids back I said that I wanted to talk about how we were splitting our savings as I didn’t think it was the fairest way that we were doing it. It was like a firework went off. He started shouting and screaming that I don’t deserve more than him (he was already getting the bigger share). Then he started going round each room in our house grabbing anything that he thought should be his. This ranged from things that were genuinely his. To the clothes dryers (the metal frames for drying clothes) to the camera that he’s never used, to pulling the kids DVD player out the wall.

And as I reread this before posting I remember other things which should never have happened in a genuine loving relationship. In fact there are probably too many to go into.

Things are better now as we are not staying together so his outbursts are more manageable as he will leave after or they are over the phone. Now though it’s apparent that he’s watching what I do. I get texts stating “that’s an odd post you liked on facebook” or “I thought you were free as I seen you had just been on whatsapp.” But it’s still taking time for me to realise that all of this is abuse and control which shouldn’t be happening in any relationship.

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Separation, divorce and the kids.

As I dry my eyes from reading others blogs about their separation and the impact that it’s had on their kids I wonder really what is best for the kids.

Yes I believe I’m happier without my husband but the stresses of being a single parent make me wonder what I should be doing to make things the best they can be for my kids.

As we live in a world where our every important and not so important life moment is posted on facebook, twitter or any other social media. Where does it leave our privacy and how do you publicly advertise that your happy marriage is now over and your relationship status is back to single. Do you delete every trace of the person from your social sites or ignore the fact that anythings changed.

Thankfully this was easier for me as my husbands first reaction was to delete his social media sites for a few months. But these are permanent fixtures in our lives. One day our children will be able to look at the history of our posts and photos and see the things we got up to and make up their own minds about our separation.

It’s only been a few months but it feels like a life time already. But as we’ve been caught up in this web of lies, deceit and confusion what is happening to the kids?

I have 2 children, a 4 year old and a 1 year old. I hope young enough to not be effected by this change too much. To hopefully take it in their stride, as kids do.

But I know my mood changes day to day and hour to hour. And unfortunately kids will be kids and their playful misbehaving gets a angrier response than is really necessary. Having another person there is nice to back you up or take over before you enter that psycho mum stage.

My husband moved out a few months ago and has regular contact with our children but I can’t help but wonder if this will change and would it be easier without this distant support. My oldest child is possibly showing distress at this situation, but I don’t know how to make it better. Don’t get me wrong he was a nightmare to toilet train, but now he’s starting to have regular accidents again. He was getting up through the night, but that seems to have stopped. But now he’s stopped listening. Nursery has commented on this too and I don’t know if it’s normal 4 year old behavior or an impact that our separation has had on him.

You never really know for sure how our lives will impact our children’s. But I will keep going though each day with the support of my family and friends and make it through the other side. I will work hard to provide for my children and I will nourish, love and protect them.

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Day 3. Menstrual cup less stress or a bloody mess?

I put off doing anything with the cup when I get up I’m the morning and decide to sort out breakfast to keep the kids out my way.

Taking it out goes OK, I get cleaned up and as I’m putting it back in one of the kids cry out in pain. So I quickly finish putting the cup in and run down stairs hoping that I feel it pop open on the way.
Clearly I didn’t put the cup in anywhere near right as its starting to make its way back out and as I sort things out downstairs I realise quickly that I need to sort out my downstairs!
I get back to the bathroom and take it out, clean it and put it back in.

Again today I’ve been out but not at work so I’ve kept a sanitary pad on for extra back up just in case. So far this has been a waste and all it has done is remind me how hot and sweaty pads are!

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There isn’t anything else to report about day 3. I feel I’m getting the hang of this and my period is usually pretty quick so that’s probably me for another month.

Day 2. Menstrual cup less stress or a bloody mess?

Thought this may be easier broken down into times throughout my day.

7am been up with the kids for 10 minutes or so and now I’m ready to see if I can get my menstrual cup out. I was surprised how little I felt it through the night.

So into the bathroom I go and start fishing. I’ve got to admit I thought it would be much more difficult than it turned out to be. I was probably a bit further inside myself than I had been before but I found my cup straight away. I couldn’t get it out by pulling the stem so I panicked for a second and then remembered reading that you could break the seal and take out by pinching the bottom of the cup. I’m only using a femmecup lite so when I squeezed the cup (probably heavy handed due to lack of experience) it came out slightly squashed. I found myself slightly disappointed that there wasn’t much in it. But then I realised why. I had spilled on the way out and the tops of my legs had a lot of blood on them. But this wasn’t going to set me back I jumped in the shower to clean up.
Now an important point I found is don’t allow your children to be anywhere near when you are trying to insert the cup for the first few times. This is an added stress that I didn’t need! I suddenly forgot all the positive feelings I had for the cup and forgot how to insert it and became a flustered mess. (Locking children out the bathroom solved this problem)
I decide I’d have faith and wear only a pantyliner for protection, 10 minutes before I left I upgraded to a sanitary pad!

11am I’m at work and it’s a public toilet. I’ve chosen the toilet that is usually quieter. But of course today it’s busy. There is only one toilet and I’m relieved that no one comes in the whole time I’m at the toilet.
Now this time I really start to panic, I can’t find the cup. When I calm down I remember to push my pelvic floor muscles to bring the cup lower. This works and I find it. I had no idea it was so big up there. The cup was at the side of my finger, had I moved a millimeter the other way I would have felt it. Then I remembered I’ve pushed 2 babies out of there, of course it’s bigger than my one index finger!
I wipe the cup out as I’m not brave enough to go the the sink in case someone comes in. And it also looks like I might have murdered someone. I reinserted the cup easily, wash myself up and think I’ve mastered this already!

2.30pm – time for another freshen up. Oh no I really have lost the cup this time. I start to plan what I’m going to do. It can stay in and I’ll wear protection as back up anyway so I’ll be fine. Then I remember to squat a bit and push my pelvic floor muscles. Suddenly I feel the cup and start to remove it. This time it’s really slippery and I can’t get a proper grip. Eventually I do and I get it out. I contemplated not putting it back in but since I’m in a public bathroom and I don’t have anything to put the cup in I decide its better going back where it came from! Inserting is easy now with the 2nd fold I tried.

6pm come home, start dinner for the kids and go to empty the cup while dinner cooks and they play. I think I’m A bit cocky this time at removal since I’m at home and making a mess isn’t as much of an issue now. So I squat a bit, use my pelvic floor muscles and go fishing for the cup again. Now one thing I never read was it isn’t one of the best ideas to push your pelvic floor muscles when you to need to pee. Let’s just say my hands got a little wet!

10pm freshen up for bed which passed with no real difficulty.

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It’s the end of my first full day using a menstrual cup and I think I may be converted already.

Throughout the day I’ve felt slightly more menstrual cramps than usual, but I’ve been having more cramps than normal this month prior to my period so I don’t feel I can blame the cup.

Inserting the cup is definitely getting easier, and the only way I can explain knowing when it’s open and in place is a popping feeling. (You will know it when it happens)

Day 1. MENSTRUAL CUP, LESS STRESS OR A BLOODY MESS?

So I found I’m desperate to try my cup. So I try to do the fold that’s shown on the leaflet that came with it. The cup folds really easily but I can’t get it inserted before it pops open.

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I think I tried 3 times with this fold and it wasn’t happening. Looking at that picture now I can see that you need to hold the folded cup and get that inside you along with the fingers (or just your fingers, someone else’s would be just odd!).

I ended up trying this fold and have to say it worked first time.

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I didn’t manage the rotating it to make sure it was open though. About 10 minutes later I felt an odd feeling and assumed that must be the cup opening. For the next 2 hours I fought the urge to check if it was working. However I did check my underwear was dry at least every 10 minutes. It’s just as well the kids were in bed! Would have been a bit hypocritical since all I keep saying to them is keep your hands out your pants! (Clearly I have boys)

At about 10pm the cup had been in just under 2 hours and I thought I’d check it worked and clean the cup before bed. I put my fingers inside and felt for the cup. It was relatively easy to find and not too difficult to take out. I couldn’t grip the stem so I pinched the bottom of the cup slightly and pulled. I think I spilled a bit on the top of my legs (definitely do this with no pants or trousers on until you get the hang of it)

Right time for the ultimate test was I brave enough to sleep with it in. This would be when I thought it would be most likely to work too far up! Decided it was better to find out in the morning before work than at work that I couldn’t get it back out!

Menstrual cup, less stress or a bloody mess? Deciding

Ok so I’ve been looking at getting a menstrual cup for a while. But it’s not an easy decision.

First there is the sizing, which do I go for? I’m 30 with 2 young children. So that means I should be going for a bigger size. I think my pelvic floor is quite strong and I know my cervix sits high so should I get the smaller size? Or do I just not want to admit that I might need a bigger size?

Then there is the cost. What if I spend £20 and then don’t like it? As a single parent I don’t really want to be wasting the money to stick a bit of silicon up me once (and that’s if I can even get it up there!)

So I started looking at eBay. Now I’m all into saving money but just to be clear I was not looking for a used menstrual cup. That seems wrong on so many levels. But then I read that some suppliers may not use medical grade silicon, then I read that medical grade silicon doesn’t exist. No wonder this becomes confusing!
In the end I gave up and decided I’ll not bother it’s too much hassle.

A few days passed and I found myself searching for a menstrual cup again. I decided I had to just go for it and buy one.
Now I had to decided which one? There are so many to choose from! And do I buy a cheap one on eBay that’s only a few pounds. But this is something I’m sticking up inside me. So thats how I decide I’ll buy a recognised brand from a reputable company.

But then which one to get, after days and days of researching I decided to go for the femmecup lite. It’s recommend for women under 30, with no children, who haven’t tried a cup before, who want a softer cup to start with and who want to try a cup without spending loads. Well 3 out of 5 is a start. (I still couldn’t accept my age and having children meant I should use a bigger size)

So with about 3 weeks until my next period and my cup ordered, femmecup lite I had read the instructions. I was ready. Then I started to look online for tips on how to insert this!

Now I don’t know how I found out but I ended up on a page that discussed cups getting stuck. That’s it I changed my mind again. I wasn’t using this thing!

But everytime I see it in my bathroom eagerly awaiting my period I think maybe I’ll just try it once.