Hey, I missed you too!
Papillon is perfect. Very good therapeutic expression, changing from a chrysalis to the papillion. I think she is more ready than she knows ;)
If I don't talk with you, have a good night.
Rose, no need to apologize. I am here for you anytime. You are not imposing on me or being self centered with asking for what you need. If I minded, I'd tell you. And I do not mind at all. I want to be here.
It sounds like you are feeling doubt about what you are doing to get away from Dave. It is perfectly fine to have moments of doubt, times where you feel so tired of the whole thing you just want to give in. You are fighting not only to get Dave out of your life, but you are also fighting yourself. You have learned that to get your needs met, being with Dave and being abused is the only way. Self esteem has a big role in what you accept in your life. Feeling worthy of a better life is not something you are used to. But pleasing Dave and having him and his needs be the focus of your life is. And that old way of doing things has a strong pull on you. And you may feel taking a stand against him is too overwhelming in light of your feelings.
You are searching for a way to keep Dave in your life. It would help you to look at why you want him there. What does keeping him there do for you? What does it mean if he has to leave?
You mention that you keep looking for him to do fatherly and husbandly things, as if you are looking for an excuse to say, see, I can let him stay. That is part of the co dependence, the wish and hope that he would change. Putting energy into looking for any sign of normal behavior from Dave so you will not have to face that he will not change.
At the same time you are consistently seeing the evidence that he is abusive. He takes all the money, food and uses you to house him, for free. He does not contribute in any way to the work needing done, including things he is especially talented at like fixing things. He spends all day sleeping, making a less than half effort at work, going to the pub and buy toys like telescopes, while you work, care for the children, care for your aunt, deal with family, homework, therapy and schools. Your days are filled with dealing with all the grown up responsibilities Dave won't touch because he doesn't like authority.
You mentioned that you fear the Social worker saying something to Dave about not being abusive and drinking and how you fear that Dave will see it as you telling on him. Protecting yourself and your kids is not about telling on Dave. It is about standing up for your rights. You and the kids deserve to be safe and live without being abused. There is nothing wrong with what you did. Just as there is nothing wrong with telling Dave he needs to be responsible for his behavior. He is a grown man and there are expectations to how he should act. And he is not living up to those expectations and using you so he doesn't have to.
You live in fear, Rose. From what you say, Dave has you so intimidated that protecting yourself is not an option. Each time you do, you end up so fearful to take the next step that you back off, letting Dave do anything he pleases to you and the kids. That fear is the thing that keeps you from getting you and the kids away from him. Even suggesting having the police help you brings up strong emotions for you, convincing you that it is not an option because it would get Dave in trouble, as if he should not be responsible for what he does. This is the road block to your freedom. Seeing it, accepting it and eventually dealing with it can help. But for your safety and the children's safety, it may be better to see it then push it aside, relying on your intellect to get you out of the situation.
There are many people in your life right now to help you break through to freedom. You have me, K, Adele, the social worker, your doctor and your friends and family. Everyone is here waiting to support you through this whole thing. You have set up a great team, but only you can lead us to where you want to go.