Main reasons for asking for divorce. I married my Perpetrator in September 1995 in Almuntada mosque Fulham. The marriage has been a struggle since the beginning.
I had a very traumatic childhood of abuse my levels of tolerance to volatile behaviour were high. I therefore put up with much more than a normal woman would.
My first pregnancy was marked by violence and I made him leave with the help of the police. After the birth of my oldest son Ali, I allowed him back hoping that he would change. He did not.
The years were spent with me not loving him but he would not go. When Ali was sixteen months old I gave birth to Ismail the violence continued.
I made it clear that I wanted him to find someone he actually would love and leave me alone. He was fully aware that I did not want intimacy with him. He would be aggressive when I would make excuses. He would also be harsher when we were intimate. I therefore could not win.
After approximately five years of marriage, I travelled to Algeria to get assistance with from his family. As he would not leave me alone. They promised me that they would help me and their mother was devastated by her son’s behaviour. However when I met them I quickly learnt that they were very violent themselves and were actually frustrated that he had not frightened me enough. They encouraged him to go into the room and attack me as I slept at 4am in the morning. I was awoken by kicks to my head. His family sees a wife as a non-person, one who should live in a terrified state. The wife should be beaten hard to ensure she was a slave for all of them. It wouldn’t have mattered how perfect I could have been the expectations would have always been higher. They were upset I wore hijab as it made life difficult for them. That attack was the worst and one I never recovered from.
On return to London I decided to not think about the attack and was glad to be home I didn’t realise that that attack had been successful, I was now broken. The violence continued. I just survived.
I went on to my final child Amiras pregnancy, yet again as always there was violence and cruel treatment of me. I would have to serve him late at night if I refused there would be consequences. I bleed heavily in her pregnancy and was ordered to rest but I lived with him.
His mother came to London eighteen years later and actually physically assaulted me herself. I got my sister in law to collect her.
Years passed with violence always present and when Ali was about 10 years old he punched me very hard in the face and put a knife to my back. He threatened to kill me and my family. I called the police and he spent six weeks in Brixton prison. I was at university at the time and was not entitled to a refuge place as I was not on benefits and living on student finance which he had taken most of. He then came out of prison and back to my home.
I went on to finish my Degree with first class honours. His violence had moved to a whole other level. Before he went to prison I thought he was a bit unbalanced but now I knew it was a choice. He threatened to kill us all each year became harder than the year before and this was a pattern.
I became very sick my body seemed to be shutting down around me. I thought I had cancer and his behaviour became a lot better, however even before I had the all clear and a new diagnosis of fibromyalgia his behaviour was back.
I now was weaker and had to live on medication long term. He saw this as an opportunity to oppress further and further with constant threats to kill.
I don’t wish you to think he was a monster all the time, He had some kind moments however the fear of his violence was always present – throughout the entire marriage.
I completed my Masters of Education. My daughter Amira finished primary and with it my loss of community. I now was not allowed to leave the house and he was more and more controlling and violent. This time I was completely isolated and ill.
In the following years that passed He became more and more oppressive with me and our three children. As the boys grew into men he was more and more unreasonble with them. He would not let them work as he put unreachable goals in their way. Wanting them to have good jobs even though they were not academic. He became much more violent and actually attacked them telling them they were not big.
This is just a summary of why I no longer wish to be married to him anymore. I want to relax and not be stressed anymore. Just not having him around me makes me feel so much healthier than when he is near me.
Too much has passed between us now, I have gave him plenty of time to change over the 22 years I survived married to him. We do not need mediation we just need to move forward apart. I do not bear him any ill wishes and hope he finds happiness with someone else Insha Allah.