Dealing with an abuser can prove to be a very treacherous and frightening experience. This experience may be heightened if you are dealing with an abuser during a divorce. If you have taken the steps necessary to protect yourself by divorce then you should be extra careful of what your soon to be ex-abuser may think or do. You should realize that an abuser’s desire for control can intensify when he feels that you and your relationship are slipping out of his grasp.
He may believe that you owe him a debt and as you begin to gain your independence from him and from the abusive relationship he may become more and more outraged. It is very likely that you will notice an increase in his level of intimidation and manipulation. Please keep in mind that while he may promise even to the point of vowing to change, this is not likely. If there are children involved he may even threaten to take custody even to the point of kidnapping.
If he has accepted that a divorce is inevitable you still need to express caution when dealing with him. There will still be a determination on his part to maintain control over you and/or your children. If and when he realizes that you are not going to cave under his threats he may switch tactics and begin to include people who are important or supportive of you.
If you are experiencing this behavior while divorcing an abusive partner then there are things that you can do to ensure your safety and the safety of your children if you have any. Remember that domestic violence is all about control. Aggression is simply an abuser’s reaction to the feeling of loss over you. If you are leaving an abusive marriage then be sure to fill your attorney in on your situation. It may be best to seek an attorney who has experience in dealing with domestic violence based divorces. You should also be sure to acquire a restraining order. Your attorney can help you to file for the appropriate restraining order and ensure that your local law enforcement agencies are alerted of your delicate situation.
If you have no friends or family that you can stay with then consider finding a local women’s shelter. If you are frightened for your safety then it is not advisable that you stay alone however if you do decide to rent a house or apartment, be sure that you select one that is in a busy area where there are many neighbors and preferably where people are around at all hours of the day and night. Home security systems are an excellent purchase if you are planning to live in a home or apartment alone. Be sure to introduce yourself to all your new neighbors and ask them to let you know if they see anyone lurking around your home. You can have your mail forwarded to your local post office for pick up instead of your new address.
If there are children involved then be sure to speak with their teachers and principles. Inform them of your situation and ask that you be informed if your spouse shows up at their school.
The most important thing that you can do is to keep people around you at all times if possible. Talk to your friends and family and be sure that you inform them of your situation and always let someone know where you will be going. While at work be sure to hang around co-workers, walk to and from your car with someone and carry a cell phone at all times. You may not need any of these tips for safety but if you are leaving an abusive relationship then you already know how dangerous your soon to be ex-spouse can be. Make sure that you have no contact with him unless your attorneys are present and know that your ordeal will soon be over and you will be free to get on with your new life.