Working after being a victim of domestic abuse.

Firstly I want to say that I don’t see myself as a victim although my training shows that I am. I’m sure I’ve never directly stated where I work or what I do on here. I find people make judgements and this is something I would rather avoid. I posted a while ago about my ex husband being charged with a domestic offence against me and the months after. What I don’t think I mentioned was that I worked in the Social Work Team dealing with Criminal Justice reports and more recently managing a case load.

Over the past few months I have been considering how appropriate it is for me to work in this area following the charge against my ex husband. My working role includes writing reports for people who have been convicted of a domestic offence against their partner or former partner. More recently my role has also managed domestic offenders and completing work with them to reduce the likelihood of reoffending.

We were sent an email at work a few months ago to nominate ourselves for domestic abuse awareness training in relation to writing the reports. The email said it was compulsory and so I chose a date and sent it away. During the morning of the training a previous manager caught my eye and signed to me that I should leave if I needed to. She had supported me through the offence going to court and realised before I did that this course was going to have a negative impact on me. I sat through the morning session and realised that I was taking little in and slowly withdrawing. I didn’t want to be part of this training and I wanted a way to escape. So I took notes, lots of notes about the course. When we were asked to do group work, I said little. I realised at that time that I needed to change where I work and quickly.

At the morning coffee break the manager came to sit with me and said she was sorry I should have never been asked to come on this training. And then I explained to her that today was also the day that my ex is back in court for sentencing. She took one look at me and told me that I shouldn’t be there and to go back to the office and work. The relief was instant. But on the drive back I realised that what had been difficult about this was that I had been abused in other ways psychologically and I had never realised it. That’s what was effecting me the most.

I hate that my ex husband has done this to me. I wanted to work in Criminal Justice and now I cant even face the work that I trained to do. I realised during the morning session that I could no longer do this and I need to change the sector that I work in. In the next few days an application should be submitted for me to transfer to a different department and hopefully I will get a transfer quickly.

The call to tell me what happened in court didn’t come through until 4.30pm. He was admonished for the domestic and fined for the driving offence. I have to say this makes me question my work further. What is the point in writing reports for the court if they make up their own minds anyway and drag people through court for there to be no real repercussions. 



Difficult times ahead

The court process can be slow and it is a long drawn out process.

But the impact that this has on the victim, the witnesses and their family can go unnoticed.

I’ve wrote before about my mums paranoia and how she woke me up to check I was okay! (Or got my Dad to) so her paranoia is at an all time high. Just what’s needed in an already stressful situation.

On top of family, my partner and myself stressing there are the unexpected stresses that occur. Now I am getting messages through my oldest in a very discrete way. Anytime he finds something that his Dad bought he says “that belongs at my Dads, I need to take it back”. This doesn’t sound too bad but when he is saying it every day and there are things at their Dad’s that I’m not getting back then it becomes more frustrating.
The boys are only young, but they are confused. And I’m confused too.

Because of what happened there are bail conditions to prevent my ex having any contact with me, so all contact with the children is done through a 3rd party, his Mother. In the whole this was okay and we had no major problems. However on one occasion she brough her daughter in-law with her (my ex sister in law). I had deleted all of his friends and family from any social media and she hadn’t taken this well. But I wasn’t expecting her to come to the front of my house and completely ignore me! I was angry, no I was furious. But I was also really hurt, we had been friends. And she was either treating me like this because I deleted her on social media (after sending an email to explain why) or because I got my ex-husband charged by the police. (He told me that she was previously taking my side as he cheated.) These situations make you see the real person. And I should be glad I’m seeing it now and I have no need to have any contact with any of them in my life again.

The night before the court case I sat and listened to recordings that I had of him shouting at me. I read texts that he sent me including ones where he admits he has shouted at me and apologised. It was grim reading. I was more than grateful of my new man sticking about while I did it. All I hope is that it will help me in court.