There were many days when my ex-husband use to come home really late & after he had been out drinking. I would be sleeping in our master bedroom, with the door locked and he would continue to knock on the door until I would open it. He would want sex, I would tell him no, but he would persist until I gave in and let him.
In my mind I was thinking, “He is drunk, it won’t last long and then he will go out to watch TV and sleep on the couch.” The problem was I felt terrible after this happened. The sex was so impersonal and it always made me feel so cheap and bad.
It wasn’t until years later that I heard about marital rape. The sex was certainly not consensual, so would that be considered marital rape? I was always afraid if I continued to say no he would blow up and get angry. He never really physically forced me but I always gave in and let him.
It seems like my ex-husband never did anything that could get him caught. He always seemed to know exactly what point to stop so he couldn’t get in trouble. For example, when I would try to leave the house he would physically block my path or use our daughter to prevent me from leaving. He would never lay a hand on me. It wasn’t until we were divorced that I called it Domestic Abuse to his face and he replied, “Kicking holes in doors & breaking glasses is not hitting, prove that in court.” Where I had thought he was unaware of his behavior, he was actually very aware and was making sure to never take it too far.
There were so many times he would wake me up early in the morning and start yelling at me. I guess it was because I was still sleeping when he left at 6:30 am to get to work. Our daughter was very young, between the ages of 1-4 and she usually woke up around 7-8 am. So I began to think I could somehow avoid pissing him off. At that time I really believed I could prevent from getting angry or make him angry. Years later I would learn I was never responsible for his behavior.
He would often get angry and say I was on vacation because I was not working. It was not that I did not want to work but he would convince me that I wouldn’t be able to find a job. He would tell me that we made plenty of money and day care would cost as much as I would make. Of course, he would tell me I didn’t have a college degree and no one would hire me. Then, he would sound concerned & helpful saying, “We need to get you a college degree.” Looking back, he always made sure there would never be enough money to do that. I wish I would have just applied for the student loans and gone anyway.
Yes he made a lot of money during those years, but he was spending it faster than it came in and we were always broke. When we were getting divorced I found out he had a secret account, hidden from me and had $1,000 a month going to that account. He also signed my name on our income tax return and hid over $8,000 from me. Not to mention he was pulling out large sums of cash from ATMs all over town for who knows what… drugs, topless bars or just hiding it from me. He kept our account pretty drained.
During those years I had started a business that would end up taking off and allowed me to leave him. It was strange because I remember how broke we were with all that money and wondered how on earth I would ever be able to pay the bills. Even today my husband and I combined still make less than my ex-husband and we are not broke all the time. Completely different experience when you are managing your money or someone isn’t mis-managing the money.