You suffered abuse while you lived together. Now you are separated. You might be going through the divorce process, or you have completed it. You have taken multiple steps to put this nightmare behind you. But your ex just can not let go of degrading or demonizing you.
The Abuse Can Happen in Many Different Ways
The abuse may have gotten worse since the separation. If the two of you have kids, they may be part of this brutal play your spouse stages. Your ex may:
- Belittle, undermine, and criticize you at every opportunity.
- Expose your children to unsafe situations or people who cause you fear and concern.
- Use intimidation, threats, violence, ridicule, and manipulation to force the children to comply with their wishes.
- Prevent your child’s social interaction to maintain control.
- Stalk you physically or electronically by bombarding you with emails, calls, threats, and abusive messages.
- Physically confront you at your home, in a public space, or at your workplace.
The abuse is only limited by your ex’s imagination and what they think they can get away with.
What Can I Do About It?
Document what is going on. Keep text messages and emails. Take screenshots of abusive social media posts. Write a journal and describe what is happening, how you are responding, and the stress and pain you are enduring.
If you are harassed in person, use your smartphone to (as discreetly as you can) record conversations. To be legal, both parties must consent to phone calls being recorded. You can use an app to record what is being said on a call, but your ex must be told about it. They may hang up or not care, and they will continue the verbal abuse. If your ex comes to your home, you can set up security cameras to record what they are doing and when.
If your children are sucked into this tornado, we can help you seek sole custody and, if we cannot end visitation, limit it and ensure that a third party supervises it. If there is no custody order, we can start the process. If there is one, we can ask the court to modify it. Your chance of success increases with more extreme and better-documented behavior.
Judges decide custody and visitation issues based on a child’s best interests. Being subjected to this kind of behavior and language is harmful and damaging, not just now but potentially for the rest of their lives.
If you feel you or your child is in danger, you have been threatened, struck, sexually abused, or your spouse refuses to leave your home, call the police. Provide them with images, videos, photos, and journal entries to establish what is going on and for how long. If there are witnesses, name them and provide contact information.
Although a prosecutor can proceed with a domestic violence case without a victim’s cooperation, it rarely happens because it is so difficult. Follow through, file the reports, and cooperate with the police and prosecution. If your ex sees criminal charges result from their words and actions, they should come to their senses.
We can help you file a protection from abuse order. Through the order, you may gain temporary custody of your kids, which will require your ex to stay away from you wherever you are.
Compassionate Advocacy From Lawyers Who Care
If your ex is abusing, stalking, or physically assaulting you, we can help. Call our office at (215) 515-5172, book an appointment online, or fill out our contact form today. We can meet in our office or speak with you by phone.