Terrified of my ex

September 05, 2023

Dear Pastor,

I am in a situation in which I feel extremely vulnerable and intimidated by my ex. A few months ago I ended the relationship because I couldn't take it anymore.

I was assisting my dad with my niece and nephew because their father went abroad to work. I stayed at my parents' house to make it easier to assist the children. My ex and I were not having a good relationship for a very long time. He said he does not know how to communicate and I can't see through it. He likes to argue about everything. He did not provide food or pay utilities. We did not resolve any of our problems; he swept them underneath the carpet. If I tried to have them resolved, he ignored me or an unrelated argument developed.

After I ended the relationship with him, he said he wanted to talk, but it did not turn out very well. He became aggressive and angrily kicked a bucket, so I left. I told him that he needed to leave and he asked how he could leave and I would be living in the house that he put his labour into. He is an electrician, and I remember asking him to give me a price to wire the one bedroom, bathroom, and verandah. He didn't give me a price and then he got upset. So I said nothing else.

A notice was served for him to leave, but he didn't vacate. I went back to court and took out a recovery of possessions order. I got a court date for next month. I left the area for a few weeks, and when I returned, I stayed at my parents' house. I decided that I was not going back to my place, but I finally did. He is still at my house. He comes and goes any hour of the night.

I told him he needs to find a place to sleep, and he ignored me. To be honest, I am avoiding all trouble. I fear for my life, and I feel threatened, vulnerable, and intimidated by his presence. An officer told me that the police can't do anything because he is not physically abusive. I will not allow him to batter and bruise me, and if it reaches that point, I will defend myself to the last breath.

I eagerly need advice and assistance. I want something to be done before the court date and before the unexpected happens. I wanted to pack his things and put them on the verandah, but I was advised not to do so because he may say his things got lost or damaged, and I would have to replace them or pay for them. I wanted to change my lock and I was told that I must give him a key. That honestly doesn't make any sense to me, so I didn't change it. However, he changed the lock and locked me out. It was replaced after I made a report at the police station.

I took two loans to complete this house, and I am currently repaying the second one. He never assisted me with any of the loan payments. I think I am losing my mind. I can't sleep at nights because I have to be watching over myself. I am in so much pain. I need counselling, therapy, and everything. I am holding on to my mental health and faith in God, but if this continues, I don't know how long I will be sane. I need urgent help. I want him to leave my house. I want the judge to hear both sides of the story. Isn't there something that can be done? Shouldn't the police see to it that he moves his things until court day? What am I to do?

Pastor, please, I am asking you for help. I keep quiet and avoid him because I know once an argument starts, I may lose my life, and I don't want to die. I am terrified. I am 34 and he is 49. We have no children together, but he has two daughters and a grandson. Please assist and help me in any way you can before it's too late.

Initial Withheld

Dear Writer,

I don't need to tell you that you can't handle this matter on your own, but I will say so nevertheless. You need the help of a lawyer. I can hear you say, "But Pastor, I can't afford it." My response would be, "You can't afford not to have a lawyer because judging from what you have written, this man will fight you to the very ground." You may not receive justice. So it is not just the police who should assist you. You need your own lawyer. I further suggest that you should not stay in the house. Go back to your parents' home. You should be safer there. I need not say any more except to assure you that I will be praying for you.


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