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Brook, IN, United States
Abuse doesn't stop at the court room. Melinda has shared her battles in her life and through the court room as she navigates through the legal system Bringing encouragement, insight and empowerment to those that are in a abusive relationship. She is in the process of creating a new life, speaking engagements to "Break the Silence" of abuse, while putting a face to abuse. She is currently working on writing a book about her experiences as a Survivor.View short Bio here- https://www.patheos.com/blogs/ahappymedium/2013/02/notbrokenbutbrave/

Sunday, May 11, 2014

Call me Master- Chapter 40 to 44- My story of escaping abuse

Chapter 40

“Only YOU can change your situation. Take time to heal, grow from the experience and move on.”

Supplement Report

Jessica & Dad argue

Jessica "You told me for 2 years- that if the divorce happened it would be all my fault. You put me in that hospital".

Dad "That's a lie".

Jessica "No it's not. You sent us both. Me & Matthew. He needed to be there".

Dad "No he didn't. I didn't want you there".

Jessica "You need to be there. You need a psych eval".

Dad "I don't know what your game is- what your mothers game is".

Jessica "My life would be great if you weren't in it".

Dad "You're repeating exactly what your mother says".

Jessica "No. She would tell me to be respectful".

Dad "You don't hurt me".

Jessica "So now you're a counselor & a psycho".

Dad "I did nothing to you".

Jessica "You choked me. That's bullshit".

Dad "I didn't choke you. I slapped you".

Jessica "Lie".

Dad "You went crazy and started attacking Matthew".

Jessica "All you did what sit on the couch & watch TV all day".

Jessica "You whipped Matthew with your belt so many times. Mom tried to protect him".

Dad "All I see is your mother. So it's ok for you to disrespect me".

Jessica "I'd rather be like her than you".

Dad "Mom is hurting you by keeping the negativity going".

Dad "I always tell Matthew to not talk badly about"

Jessica "Why do you or Matt keep texting Mom in the middle of the night?"

Jessica "You ruined the first 10 years of my life".

Dad "Your Mom keeps your away from me. You can argue all you want. It doesn't hurt me".

Jessica "I hate you with a deep passion. I want to stab you right now- but I won't because I will not stoop to your level. I wish you would leave me alone. I hate you! I don't want to see you!"

Dad "I'm fighting for custody of you".

Jessica "I hate you. I thought you changed- but you didn't. Stop this visitation shit. I hate you. Get out of my life".

Alex "Guys your kinda talking loud".

Dad "You shush!"

Jessica "NO!" and slams her hands on the table

Jessica throws her cards at dads face.

CTH security enters visit

Dad laughs when Jessica leaves

Dad "Alex I didn't hurt you. You're my baby".

Alex cries- Alex asks to leave

Matt cries.

*Mom called to pick up girls 11:23 am

Later after things had calmed down, I had asked my mother-in-law to make a statement to my attorney as well as police. During a conversation on the phone I had pleaded with her to think of the safety of all the children and perhaps if my abuser is exposed for his violent and erratic behavior then maybe my oldest would be able to be placed with a family member or foster home. This could be a way for him to escape from being under his father’s thumb and have a chance to have a new start without fear.

Sadly, she advised me that my abuser had threatened her not to say anything to anyone or he would burn her home down with her and his father in it! She said that she couldn’t go against her son and feared that he would follow through with his threats.

Chapter 41

“You can’t control how some people will treat you or what they’ll say about you. But you can control how you react to it.”- Unknown

Counselors and the Guardian ad Litem

Enter in an interesting chapter in our divorce. As we emotionally bounced back and forth in the courtroom decisions, the appointment of counselors and a Guardian ad Litem, proved to be interesting, my then sister-in-law was also kind enough to write some insight that she shared openly with the Guardian ad Litem in 2011 as follows:


My name is Susan. I am the sister of Robert and the Aunt of Matthew, Jessica and Alex. Many months ago I was asked to contact you on the behalf of the children, but all of my attempts went unanswered. I figured that meant you didn't need my input. Well, I have just heard that you are siding with Rob in this matter and was forced to write to you, whether or not you want to read it.

Where shall I start?

Rob is four years younger than I am and nine years younger that my sister. When did I learn that there was something wrong with him? 

One day we were rough playing in the back yard as children will. He was no more than 5. I usually let him win at most everything, but that day he landed flat on his back and got the wind knocked out of him. His eyes got big as he was clearly terrified. When he could breathe again he told me that if I ever did anything like that to him again, they would never find my body. Yes, I said he was 5. That was when it all started. Perhaps sooner, but being just a kid, maybe
I didn't see it before that.

A short time later, when Rob started going to school for the whole day, our mother got a job. As a result, we were left alone at home in the afternoons until our dad came home. (He was a tradesman and started very early and as a result was home first.) That hour or so became the most horrific time in my life. Especially once he started to get bigger than me. For years he would torment me. It was verbal at first, but the bigger he got, the bolder he got. 

Soon the violence began. His favorite trick was to take something that he knew I held dear and throw it out into the three feet of snow in the front yard. As soon as I ran out after it, he would lock me out. No shoes, no coat. Luckily for me we had a VERY nice elderly couple for neighbors and she always let me stay with her.

Where was our sister in all of this? Well she was older. She got a job downtown as part of a work study program when she was 16 (that makes me 11 and Rob 7). After that she was never really around.
I don't know if you have any siblings, but I loved my brother and hated him at the same time. That ended the day he escalated to weapons. When I came out of my room before our parents were home, he chased me around the house with knives. Big sharp ones. That was the day I stopped being conflicted.

Where were our parents?

They didn't believe me. Until some years later when he got bolder. My Grandmother lived with us for a time and he even got brazen enough to hit on her! Once I remember my Dad chasing him because he deserves a good smack. Don't think he caught him though. Mom still didn't really believe. Now a days she says she believes, but he is always going to be her little baby boy.

When he learned to drive, he would go around terrorizing the neighborhood. One day, someone had just gotten a new appliance so the giant box was sitting on the curb for trash day. He plowed right into it deliberately. He did not know that the homeowner had put the old appliance in the box and it became a several hundred pound projectile and nearly killed the kid playing in his own yard.

Rob thought that was hysterically funny. So my parents took his car away and hid it on him. Then out came the Hyde in him. Swearing, threatening, destroying, hitting, and on and on. One time he was so bad, that I had to call my Uncle (federal special agent) to come over. Rob was pretty big at the time, but he got put down and cuffed by his own uncle!

Now Rob could turn on the charm better than any psychopath ever. He got himself a young girlfriend who wanted out of her own bad situation. When exactly he began to show her the other side I do not know. But I know what followed. Verbal and physical abuse to his wife and then eventually to the children. Before they were married, my mother, sister and I all sat Melinda down and tried to tell her what he was like. In the end, she said that she understood, but the heart wants what the heart wants. Now ask her about that day and she has a very different opinion.

For the details on what happened in his house to his family, you should talk to Melinda. But I can hit some of the highlights over the years.

He felt a transit bus cut him off in traffic so he came screaming around and cut the bus off so that it had to stop and then he got out with a hammer or tire iron or something like that, and smashed in the door of the bus while screaming at the driver and ordering him to come out so he could beat him up. Luckily the cops were able to take him away first.

That was just the tip of the iceberg when it came to his seething rage.

Rob has always felt that he was entitled to anything he wanted and the world and everyone in it owes him something. After he got married, they stayed with my parents for quite a while because he had made my parents give him the down payment on a house. He then tore the house to pieces and practically gutted the entire thing.
God only know how much my parents had to pay to get it back into a livable condition. (More on his intense love for destruction, especially of houses, later if you would like to know.)

He would also break into my parents’ house any time he wanted and steal tools from my Dad and food and whatever else he decided was his. So much so that when my parents finally got up the nerve to say something about it, he did this great "You never loved me or wanted me to have anything" episode where he brought back to them so much stuff that he had stolen that it filled one side of a two car garage. And he did that so that they would then have to move everything before they could park there. That was a pretty big project for them at the time as they were getting on a bit. Please feel free to have a chat with my parents about any and all of this. 

But I digress...

For years Melinda had tried to get up the courage to take the kids and leave him to stop all of the insanity, but it took her a while. When she finally did, my parents and I were VERY supportive of her. We helped her all we could. Unfortunately she ended up going back that first time.

In order to coax her into returning, Rob checked himself into a psychiatric facility for evaluation. After a few days, they called me to discuss his condition.

They said that Rob had told them to talk to me because I don't take or give any bullshit. I found that strange, but while I was talking to them I asked if they knew that everything he said was calculated to some end of his own devices.

They told me that he wasn't fooling them even a little bit because they were experts on people that only say what they think the doctors want to hear. I then asked if it would be alright for them to tell me with what they had diagnosed him.

They said sure, I was immediate family and she started rattling off a list of disorders, syndromes and tendencies so long that I couldn't keep up when writing them down. After the first 5 or so I just listened with my mouth hanging open. You should try to get a look at those records.

Oh yes, I forgot to mention the religious fanaticism he apparently "found" while he was in the hospital. Suddenly he starts rambling on how God is now talking to him directly and telling him what to do and what will happen. He took to typing out dozens of pages of ranting with religion, profanity and rage all rolled up into one. I have a copy of some of them if you would like to see them.
When he left that facility, it was with a prescription for meds to help with his manic - depression and bi-polar diagnoses. He took the pills for a little while and then stopped because they interfered with his ability to have sex three times a day. Soon everything was back to as bad as ever.

After some time, she tried to leave with the kids again. Well, let's just say that the third time was the one that stuck. She had all three kids and they were very relieved to be away from him and everything he put them through on a daily basis.

Now came summer vacation and she took the kids back to his house during the days when she worked because there were other kids and a yard there. She came for them at night to take them home. That clearly indicated to us that reasonable custody/visitation schedule could be reached.

Rob took this opportunity to do as much damage and brain washing as he could. Alex is young and everyone who knows her will tell you that she is in her own little world, but it is OK because they know her there. Jessica sees the unvarnished world through the skeptical eyes of a middle child. She has always been very aware of everything that goes on around her and is forever trying to keep the peace. But then there is Matt.

Matt has spent his whole life wanting just one thing. To make his father love him. He spent years trying to figure out some way into Rob's heart and all he ever got was shot down. Perhaps an example...Matt had some good news to tell his father. I don't remember if it was a good grade or something else, but everyone was there including my parents and I when Rob came home. Matt was called downstairs to tell his good news in front of us all. So, beaming, he told him. Then he goes to have a hug with his father and Rob smacks him on the behind and yells at him because he stinks. And he wanted to know why Matt had forgotten to put his deodorant on that day. And why doesn't he do what his father told him to do.

The boy was crushed and mortified. After all, he had just started wearing deodorant and had probably forgotten in all of the excitement.  And as of that moment, he started to change. He took the “who gives a crap” attitude because he had to in self-defense. 

Soon after that he started fighting at school.

When Rob started the deliberate brainwashing began on Matt, all he had to do was pay him some attention and reward the desired behavior. Soon he had convinced Matt that his mother was the one responsible for destroying the family and that she was just evil and God wanted her destroyed. He told him he would be doing God's work if he stabbed his mother in her sleep one night. It was around then that Rob requested a letter from a judge stating that if Matt ended up having to kill his mother that he couldn't be held responsible.

I can only imagine that his lawyer at the time discouraged it. 

Shortly thereafter, Mat started a fire in the apartment in which he and his sisters and mother were living. I believe the intention was to get them kicked out so they would have no choice but to go back home to Dad. Let's not forget the day that his backpack was searched and they found knives. I don't know if they were the same kind his father used to use on me, but I do know there was more than one.

Let me take this moment to insert Terry into the picture. I believe that Melinda's meeting Terry was the thing that gave her the courage to finally leave Rob for good.

Just to be clear, Terry did not enter the picture until after Melinda's first two attempts to get away. Nevertheless, Rob jumped right onto the "this is the guy who broke up our family" mode with Matt. He trained Matt to hate him. You will hear some fabricated story about how Terry is a child abuser or the likes. This all stems from the day that Matt pulled a knife on his mother while Terry was in the room. Terry proceeded to push him away from her and take the knife.

The fact that Rob thinks that is child abuse may be why he does not recognize all of the abuse he perpetrated upon his own kids. It was decided that since Matt was trying to kill his mother, that he should go back to live with his father. I understand the necessity of the move, but fear it was that event that has undone Matt for good. A short time later, Matt sucker punched Terry in the lobby of the county courthouse. The guards were witnesses.

Melinda had tried from the beginning to get Rob to let her go, but he would not and will not have any of it. You see, Rob is entitled to anything he wants and God will ensure that he gets everything that he is supposed to. She has asked him for child support and to be left alone. He is not interested. God has told him that once she is done making her mistakes she will be back and all will be as it was. He has refused for more than a year to simply let her go.

I am sure you can get a list of the lawyers that have represented Rob throughout this process. They will all tell you that he is nuts and that is ultimately why they no longer represent him. He is totally self-centered and extremely pompous. He goes around threatening Melinda, Terry, Mom, Dad, me and Melinda's lawyer with how he is going to go to court and get a court order for this or against that.

My favorite one was when he told my parents that they are not allowed to talk to Melinda anymore and he is going to get an order of protection so she can't talk to them nor them to her. He is a huge blowhard that tries to use the system to threaten others into doing what he wants.

He cannot even create the thought in his head that his kids are more important than he is in this matter. There is nothing in this world that he cannot and does not control. He is severely mentally ill and delusional. He has written of lengthy conversations he has had with angels and God. She just wants him to leave her alone.

I'll even give you a perfect example of how he plays the system. He works in the trades as a waterproofer/roofer. My father worked in the trades all his life and I am well aware of the income brought in by side jobs and under the table overtime. It is how many families make ends meet. For some reason, his boss trusts him and has helped him out over the years. I would imagine Rob is too smart to show him the other side.

Many months ago he stopped working. Actually he stopped working on the books. He was taking the vast majority of his pay under the table so that it would go unreported. He stopped making the mortgage payments and lost the house. According to him, he "wasn't going to spend any more money on something that she could get half of." So he lived rent free until the back kicked them out. What would you do with almost a year of mortgage payments in your pocket? Melinda didn't want the house and was happy to sign it over to him. But he doesn't take chances. At the time they took the house he had ripped apart the girls’ bedroom to fix a supposed leak from the laundry room below.

At last viewing, it was still torn apart. He is now renting a house and making plans to start improvements (which means tear it apart.) My sister's basement is still without walls or insulation and he tore that out years ago. He makes big plans and does not know the meaning of the word moderation. He requires instant gratification in all things.

He doesn't like me around much because I am the only one alive who is not afraid of him. I have always been able to see the actual motives behind everything he does and I do not take his bullshit. I have called the police on him before and have no fear of doing it again.

My parents are old and can't handle the amount of grief he puts someone through when he doesn't get what he wants. My mother was nice enough to allow the kids to have visitation at her house. Each and every time, Rob waltzes in like he is part of the kid’s time together.

They let him.

One day he got Jessica in a bear hug and he's whispering into her ear. Now I know from history that he is telling her not to worry and he will have them all back very soon. I told him that he is not allowed to isolate and whisper to the girls. 

At which point he begins threatening me with court orders, etc. He was asked to leave and refused. So I told the girls we were leaving. He didn't like that one little bit. No one can control something of his! And another time I actually did call 911 to have him removed. He left moments before the 9 Crown Point police officers arrived. They searched the neighborhood to make sure he wasn't coming back and went by his house to see if he was there. Now he is known to police in South Holland, Dolton, Lansing, Griffith and Crown Point.
Matthew, I regret to say, has not had an original thought or spoken his own words for many months. He is a full blown puppet of my brother and is being encouraged to commit violent crimes. I lost count of the number of times that he has been suspended from school. He will fight at the drop of a hat. He has learned all sorts of obscene language and uses it regularly. 

We all fear that it is too late to get him back. So much so that there have been discussions about who could possibly take Matt, just to get him away from Rob. Even my Aunt and Uncle (retired federal special agent) have thought about taking him. Matthew is allergic to cats and I have two that are my babies, but if he needs to come live here to get away from his father then I will find other homes for them.

Matt is showing the same signs of mental illness that his father and his grandfather did. Unfortunately, he will not get the help he needs because Rob refuses to admit that there is something wrong with himself, much less his son.

I implore you to not only keep the girls away from him, but get Matt away from him too before it is too late. I think at this point, even Matt going into the foster system for some time would be better than staying with his crazy father who refuses to take the meds that make him lucid and rational.


*This letter was submitted but never mentioned in any of the hearings. I do not believe it fell onto deaf ears and was taken into consideration on decisions that impacted the children*

I was happy to hear that the magistrate was outraged about Rob’s erratic behavior and recent turn of events.

The thought of attending counseling brought in a whole new safety concern. I was concerned that these maybe together with Rob or that we would have an issue with him catching us in the parking lot.
My fears were settled a bit, as the counselors throughout the duration had taken concerns for these things seriously. We were never scheduled together, thus pushing my worries aside a bit.

Terry and I never felt totally at ease for safety. Terry became my eyes and ears at these times, my back up partner. Circling parking lots or surveying the area before and after our sessions or any other events where Rob could possibly be.

Mission Impossible music played in my head from time to time. Not making light of the situations but we needed to find a lighthearted look from time to time.

At this time I also learned how to defend myself, adding an addition of permit to carry I added the label of a “Packing pistol Momma!” to my list of new things I have learned since leaving Rob.

Counseling went well! The girls enjoyed one particular counselor, Kim, the girls opened up to her with ease and looked forward to meeting with her. I hit it off really well with her as well. Kim listened, provided input and kind words of how to slowly heal.

Her words of wisdom and gentle manner with the girls gave me encouragement for a change of how our situation was being handled. She advised me that we suffered from classic symptoms of PTSD.

At first I scoffed at her, PTSD that was something a solider or someone that suffered a terrible trauma had.

She advised, “Melinda, you and your kids went through a war, all the issues are symptoms of PTSD. Don’t discount any of it as, not that bad. You were abused. The kids were abused. It will take time to heal, this won’t happen overnight but it will happen.”

I was stunned. I couldn't say anything. Feeling tightness in my throat as she spoke, we saw her sporadically for a year, and then were alerted that she can no longer see us. Off the record, she advised she had concerns about how her sessions were with Rob and Matt.

She saw Rob for what he is, cunning, charming, with underlying psychotic tendencies, with a scary obsession for me, these things and other observations mirrored those documented from psychiatrists 

Rob’s stays in the hospital years and months ago.

Around the same time of the situation, John, the appointed Guardian ad Litem, also withdrew from our case, he forwarded emails that he deemed appropriate to share with me from Rob.

An immediate emergency hearing was requested by John to terminate any further involvement with our case, the hearing was scheduled for a week later.

The Magistrate was livid and disgusted. He had never had a Guardian pull out before! He held up a stack of papers that he informed us was over 100 emails that were blasted to John, that were threatening physical violence towards John, Terry and I, as well as implicating there could have been sexual exchanges between John and myself!

Despite the incriminating disclosure of this new information, and our counselor Kim terminating her sessions with us, we were still ordered to do counseling and supervised visits.

We negotiated to have the visits at Rob’s parents’ home. I wasn't happy with the decision, but was assured his Mom, Judy and his sister would watch over the girls while everyone visited for no more than 3 to 5 hours, at least once a month.

It sounded good on paper, but in actuality the visits were strained, the police were called on two separate occasions. The last time they were called by Jess! Apparently, Rob had begun arguing with Jess about child support and me. Jess had a friend, Valerie with her. Jess had went outside, Rob was demanding that Jess return to the house, and she told him no!

Judy, had attempted to calm Rob down but he continued to scream at her and his Father, Bob.  As the situation escalated, Jess called the police.

I was informed by my sister in law, Rob had screamed that if he couldn't see his kids with no issues, he would slit their throats so they couldn't go back to me!

I was both livid and deeply concerned, I called my attorney right away leaving a voice mail about the situation.  

Visitations were halted, once again an emergency meeting was called. We were given a new counselor as well as scheduling for the Children’s Treehouse visits between Rob and the girls. The girls would also have time to visit with Matt, both were happy about that!

Chapter 42

“You CAN and WILL get through this! BELIEVE!”- Author) Kristy Robinett

The Legal System

Things I have learned while going through my divorce:

It's not easy when you are ending a relationship with someone that is unstable.

Legal land is a long process that takes even longer if you have an unstable spouse.

There is no glory in divorce no matter what the situation.

There are hurt feelings all the way around during a divorce.

Finding out you are pregnant while you are divorced is not fun at all takes the process longer in Legal land. (Though I am sincerely grateful I am being able to have another chance to have this little blessing)

Divorce costs more than your sanity, it charges by the hour.

No matter how petty the situation is the tendency of your ex-partner is to totally blow it out of proportion and you remember one of the reasons you are leaving this person.

Supervised visitation... If I could do it over again I would have made sure I put my foot down and said I would do it the place they suggested so not to put undue stress on my in-laws and everyone else involved.

The court system can sometimes make you frustrated, angry and depressed all in one court hearing! My emotions would seem to switch on a dime due to the emotional roller coaster taking place. More often than it is in your best interest to let the judge and officials guide you through the process. You will appear unstable yourself “if” you fail to keep your composure and emotions in check. 

Easier said than done and it does take a lot of restraint!

Keep records of conversations between you and your abuser. Even it does not seem relevant, leaving a paper trail throughout the whole process can really help you out when part of your case is missing or perhaps there is a relevant piece of information that can ward off postponement of your hearing!

Educating yourself as you go through this process is a daunting and at times can be really intimidating if you have never had any legal issues in the past. Spend time on your own to check books from library, web searches, and many states have resources or even Pro Bono attorneys that will help you research or file your own hearings or divorce!

Make sure you keep every date for your hearing if possible.

Chapter 43

 “You gain strength, courage and confidence by every experience in which you really stop to look fear in the face.”-Eleanor Roosevelt


What do you think of when you hear those names? I think of our law enforcement, firefighters, service men and women.

I have heard how “brave you are to come out and share your story”. I do not think of myself as those words. I don’t see myself that way at all.  

To me, brave would have been someone that did leave right after the first blow. As I had laid as a puddle of bones at the bottom of the stairs, afraid to move a fraction of an inch, afraid to breathe. I replayed the events in my mind in a flash.

Did I tumble down the stairs my own clumsiness or did he really push me?

I am I broken?

I prayed for strength and to be able to rise up without anything more than a bruised ego and crushed spirit.

I prayed the kids didn't see or hear what just happened.

Why me Lord? I screamed in my mind.

My faith held strong and I knew God would get me through this storm. 
He would keep me safe and keep me from losing my sanity.

I have told my story countless times. This isn't a story of poor me.

I longed to have a love that was strong. Some girls dream of finding a Prince to love. I dreamed of love. I was surprised that my heart still had these yearnings.

On one hand, I wanted to escape to another part of the country or world. I thought of running to a place where no one knew us. So we can start all over. Where we could be safe. I had thought about the consequences as well. In most cases when a survivors goes underground or runs she is usually brought to criminal charges.

I have read and been told that the first few hours of leaving your abuser is the most volatile.

I believe after time the anger simmers down but if the person suffers from mental instability they will stop at nothing to get even with you for leaving in the future, causing the survivor to be always on guard and cautious, even years after the separation. 

While it seems that can be a loss for a survivor, on the flip side, it should be seen as triumph of sorts. You are no longer in that frightening situation! One has to be diligent about personal safety and with the safety of those around you.

It’s hard to imagine starting a new life once you have left your abuser. Your heart is shattered.

Your dreams of a long relationship lay scattered on the ground and you feel that your whole life is just a shambles! That wonderful person made promises of change. Or promises of a long life together.

Chances are the person that hurt you caused you to doubt yourself or to belittle yourself.

Taking back that confidence in yourself is a step to healing! You may feel powerless or uncertain about the choices you are making. Gaining the strength to stand on your own is scary as well.

I choose to enlist God to help me through the rough times. Even when 

I was being hurt, especially at those times is when I asked God to come and intervene. He kept me strong, encouraged me to dust myself off and get back up.

I would ask why God? Feeling as though I must be a horrible person or an idiot for staying in the relationship. Not feeling worthy to leave.

I was able to do some research and find out that many states do have a program that will provide, new social security number and allow the survivor to have complete control to keep any personal information hidden.

Sadly, this does not apply to those that have children with the abuser. In many cases the survivor maintains a new location after new location. Forever changing phones or work addresses to remain safe. This does not protect the children from seeing the abuser.
There are each state has Parental Rights that allows the abuser to have access to the children for visits either over nights or for allotted time. I am not an attorney so please research laws in your state or ask your legal representative what the laws are for your area.

Visitation can be a death trap for a survivor! She can walk into a well-planned scheme or to harm the survivor or further abuse her.

Take steps to protect yourself by being pro-active about visits by:

Plan in advance

Meet in a public setting, preferably in the day

Tell a trusted friend knows where and when you are leaving

Keep your phone on and in your hand or even have it on with friend on the other line so they can hear the exchange and they can get help if needed

You can also alert the local law enforcement about the circumstances. In many cases they will send a patrol car nearby or at the location in case assistance is needed.

Ask if a friend can go with you!

Keep a log of how the exchange went, whether there were any altercations during the exchange.

After the visit don’t press the kids for information but keep track of any comments or take notice of any behavior changes, no matter how small they may seem. This information can be given to a counselor, judge or attorney if needed.

Chapter 44

“Violence isn’t always evil. What’s evil is the infatuation with violence.”-Jim Morrison

What did you do to make him lose it?


You have to realize that you are not to blame!

Honestly, personally no one wants to start an incident that could escalate into something that can get heated. I would try to get things to go as smoothly as possible.

Making sure Rob was top priority was all there was in order to make home life tolerable. Even if it meant putting my children on hold, in his mind, HE came first. He would state that as long as the kids weren't bleeding they were fine.

Rob’s needs became above and beyond my time with God. "Church is what that is for!" he would complain, of course when Sunday came around he made the excuse that God would understand I was to spend time with him instead.

I would sarcastically think to myself, “Oh, sure I enjoyed getting yelled at. Sure, I just enjoyed things getting thrown at me. Sure, I enjoyed being told I was just useless for anything.”

Sure I enjoyed the, “Why do you like making me lose control?" talks.

He would argue that, I must like being hit or punishment. Maybe I got off by getting hit. And perhaps got a thrill from being kicked or punched.

“Why do you make me mad?”

“Mel, Can’t we just have a nice (Fill in the blank) once?!”

Yup that’s right! I couldn't get enough of him in my face, choking or slapping my face. Or Indian rubs until I cried because he rubbed me raw he thought it was funny.

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