So here I go again. After several years of safety, the sociopath is back. For years he had terrorized me, smeared me, stalked me, had others stalk me, threatened me, abused my son, and everything else an obsessed abuser does. As is common, he tells everyone I’m crazy. That’s what abusers do. The victim who doesn’t like being abused anymore is “crazy.”
I’m to the point where I don’t care that any strangers believe I’m “crazy.” My life is nice and quiet. It is stable. I have all the normal things in my life that the abuser cannot have: education, a career, a home, a stable life in the same place for many years. I am liked. I do good work. I have won awards for my help to others. This is not crazy. This is a nice goody-two-shoes person who seeks peace and quiet and has no negative record of any kind. I avoid risk and anything that can bring trouble to my life. My kids and I have a modest little life and make no waves. I’m dating a nice guy and it is serious.
But I can’t avoid the sociopath because–although he doesn’t use it for years at a time–he has a court order allowing him visits with my son. My son who is shy, observant, sensitive, and so small for his age. Every visit leaves me in terror, and I don’t relax until my son is home safe. Thank God we were safe for so long.
But, the abuser wanted a visit. He didn’t ask. He just told me what I had to obey. Even now, I mostly obey because I’m so grateful that his visits are minimal. I would rather agree and accommodate than be screamed at. I don’t want him to rage because he might take it out on my son.
I am always terrified about exchanges. I will never do one alone. Most of the time, I have a third party do it, but two of the ladies who have helped in the past now refuse to deal with him because he bullied them. So, I took my partner. My nice, sane, stable, level-headed partner who is respectable and safe in every way. The abuser usually plays nice in front of a witness. I should be safe, I thought.
I was wrong. Apparently, because I’m in a serious relationship, my abuser is angry. How dare I find someone after so long? He showed up berating and bullying me. The name-calling and yelling started right away. The threats and insults didn’t even take a full minute. Then came the nasty sexual comments about me to my partner. My children were sitting next to me. They heard it all. This is not okay. As a mother, I want to throw up because someone is saying these things in front of my kids. They don’t even know what these things mean. My partner is keeping his cool, but I’m shaking with fear. My abuser is telling me I’d better be ready with a lot of money because he’s coming after me. More threats. More insults. I realize I can’t let him take my child. I realize that my child is in danger if he goes with his dad while his dad is acting like this and making these threats.
I timidly speak up “we can’t do this visit.” My abuser is yelling and doesn’t hear me. I look at my partner and say “I can’t do this.” The third time I say it, the abuser hears and comes at me. He grabs my son next to me and starts running. I run after. My partner runs after. I tell my older son to sit still. My younger son is scared and asking to get down. His dad refuses. My partner and I are pleading for him to let go. My son is reaching for me and wriggling to get free. I am trying to hold him.
After what seems like forever, my son is getting loose and gets down. I tell him to RUN and he does. I turn to run after him. Something slams into the back of my head. I have no idea what hit me. My abuser has slammed me to the ground and my head is hitting the pavement and the world goes black. I struggle to gain control of my head. Everything is blurry and I see two of everything. I push myself up and my partner is there to help me, but I cry for him to help my son and yell for someone to call 911.
My abuser sees people coming and flees the scene. The police arrive and ask me where he lives and what he is driving. I don’t know. It’s different every time. He’s lived in a dozen states that I know of since the divorce. It’s always someone else’s car. I have no idea what to tell them. My other son who stayed behind offers that he caught part of the license plate. He was smart to remember to pay attention and I tell him so.
The police are asking everyone what happened and I shake and cry while I write my statement. I try to form words, and I see two of my right hand against the paper. My son is safe. The abuser had shoved me out of the way to grab him but he let my son down when people started to respond to my yells for help.
I press charges. They are going to arrest him when they find him. They are trying to run records and figure out what he was driving. We all sit around and my kids are telling me how scared they were. They are both upset by the threats they heard. They repeatedly tell me they were worried that my ex said he was going to take my son from me. My older child says he’s scared to go home because he thinks my ex will hurt us. My younger agrees. They hold on to me while my heart races.
It’s going to be okay. The abuser is going to jail. They will find him and arrest him. Someone will listen to us.
An hour later, as we wait for papers and formalities, the police call me over. They tell me my attacker turned himself in. I’m relieved, but something isn’t right. They tell me he showed up with scratches on his arms and said I’d violently assaulted him so he lightly pushed me in self defense. I’m confused. That’s not what happened. I’d held on to my son and pleaded with him. My partner and kids and I all gave separate statements that corroborate. I didn’t touch him. He had no marks. But…he says I did it. I ask why they don’t check under my nails. They roll their eyes and say they don’t do stuff like that. I know I’m innocent and I point out that he was missing for an hour. They don’t care. He told them I was crazy.
The police tell me I’m being arrested too. It feels like a joke. I keep asking if they have the right person. I’m so confused. I was just yelled at, threatened, and attacked. I have a bump on my head. I’m shaking and seeing double. My head is pounding. My heart is racing. What is going on? I stare numbly wondering if I’m awake.
I can’t write anything more right now. I’m having anxiety just thinking about this.
My abuser has maliciously hit me to the ground, but is pretending I’m the violent one. The police are buying it. They won’t listen to my partner or kids. They won’t look at his history of hurting myself and multiple other women. I’m living the nightmare that so many targets of sociopaths know.