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David's personal story

My abuse was mostly psychological--if not because I didn't report the harassment to the authorities as frequently as it occurred. My ex-wife degraded me and criticised me every day during our marriage, and it didn't stop after the divorce. We have a young child so have contact nearly every day. For each and every encounter or exchange of the child, I am criticised for literally everything. For example, my daughter's hair is never right, clothes are never right, I never give her the right food, I don't clean her correctly, I keep her up too late, I'm giving her food that causes cancer, my car is too old, my house is too messy. You name it, it's me so it's wrong.

And when she comes over, she rummages through the house looking for things she wants to take. All while degrading me. She rummages through my private papers, our daughter's clothes, and anything she thinks is hers that she wants to take. Because she's a school teacher of young children, I often hear ‘you're no better than my kids at school. They're smarter than you are....etc, etc.’ After you hear these insults for years, it definitely grates on you--because you don't hear any criticism from anyone else in your life, but your ex feels like she can kick you anytime she wants--you're fair game.

You don't complain or file harassment charges, because you want to keep the peace for the sake of the child. Any harassment charge comes with an automatic restraining order, which makes it hard to exchange the child. You have to use third-parties.

Recently, though, I'd had enough. My ex was in my house and noticed some unsorted kids socks on a counter. She wanted them. She wanted all of them and would have left me with none--and my daughter was with me. On this one occasion, I just said ‘no.’ The response? She wouldn't leave until I gave her the socks. She actually sat on the floor between my kitchen and living room to block me from walking out of the kitchen. I was able to walk over her and she followed me to the balcony, but grabbed me and scratched me on the arm as I walked past. On the balcony, I was able to turn the video on on my phone, and I recorded the rest of her visit.

She ignored the video and kept up her angry demands for the socks--though she was late for a meeting at work, which was the local grade school. I let her play herself out until she finally left, I kept insisting that she leave my house. Initially, she wouldn't.

After she left, I called the local Sheriff and showed him the video and told him my story. What happened? He consulted his sergeant on duty and they went to the school and took my ex-wife into custody. Charges? Burglary, harassment, domestic violence. She spent the night in jail and was arraigned the next day. Also, the school district prohibited her from setting foot on school property until further notice.

I don't feel right turning her in like that. I'd seen the same angry face numerous times, she'd taken many items out of my house, and I'd been ridiculed for years. But--on this particular day--I'd had enough. I was tired and I didn't want to give up the socks and I wasn't going to budge. Strangely, she didn't back off when the video was on and actually started arguing to my cell phone stating how bad I was. That was the wrong thing to do. But, she couldn't contain herself.

This is what the Deputy needed to see and what the District Attorney needs to see--the outright anger and viciousness my ex-wife used on me that was hidden to everyone else.

This was her second offence. They dropped the charges for the first one. This one will stick. I still feel bad about it, but she deserves all she gets this time. And I can relax knowing my daughter's mom isn't going to come into my house, degrade me, and take my belongings.

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