Sometimes it’s safer for you and your loved ones if you moved out of the house without your husband finding out. These tips on moving out secretly – without telling your husband – are from a woman called Diane. Here’s how she left her abusive marriage without alerting her husband to her plans. She got out safely, and she is here to tell you how you can make a similar move.
Diane moved her and her kids out because her husband was unhealthy, abusive, and dangerous. “My kids learned who their mother is that day,” she wrote me after she read How to Get Away From an Abusive Husband. “They know how loved they are. They know that I am a woman of action, not just of words. I had to move out without my husband finding out, and I don’t regret a minute of my life.”
Here’s how this woman got over her fears and finally left a marriage she knew should have been over long ago.
Stay focused on the future you want to create
“We are enjoying our freedom, says Diane. “Our ‘geared to income’ place is clean and spacious. Money is tight. I don’t work, so we’re on assistance. It’s worth it! The woman’s abuse center has been so good to us and they are willing to find us anything we need. The city gave us a start up fee to pay movers and hook ups. The Red Cross can also help with money or items.”
Be willing to make sacrifices when you move out – especially if you do it without your husband’s knowledge. You may not be moving to the most beautiful place in the world…but you’ll be safe and free.
Know that you are worth the risk
“Women, don’t be alone, don’t be afraid and most of all, don’t give up on yourselves,” says Diane. “You are worth it. Your kids need one strong, loving parent. You can be that for them if you leave. You don’t need anyone or anything but a sound mind and good resources. I made my phone calls from my cell phone, which I have only had for a year. A counselor told me it was very important to have one and she was right. If you have to, make your calls from the library, the YMCA, the employment center.”
When you’re moving out without your husband finding out, it’s important to keep yourself safe. Don’t give him hints that you’re leaving, or he may threaten or sweet talk you into staying. Even if you feel like you’re all alone, remember Diane’s words: You don’t need anything or anyone to move out without him finding out – not even a cell phone!
Get help, support, and guidance
“From the Women’s Abuse Center you can get a counselor who can also help you. She should guide you to resources in your city. I didn’t like the first counselor I had so I changed agencies. I know it’s hard when you are in the pit of an abuser. What I am saying may sound unreachable for you, but I assure you it is possible!”
If money is a problem for you (as it is for the majority of women who want to move out without their husband’s knowledge!), read How to Get Money to Leave Your Husband.
Be humble and swallow your pride. I know how hard it is to ask for help, but it’s nothing to be ashamed of. On the contrary, asking for help means you have strength and courage – and you should be proud of that!
Use every advantage and resource you have
“How do you make sure he won’t find out that you’re moving out? Unfortunately, there are no guarantees,” says Diane. “First: I had a plan to continue even if he found out. I studied him enough to know exactly what I could use to reassure him. You probably know too if you think about it. I was going to make sure he knew there was no one else and I wasn’t seeking divorce. I just didn’t think I was good enough for him, so I wanted some time alone to work on myself for six months or so to give him a better wife. You have to outsmart him. You almost have to get into a state of reversing the roles, so you’re messing with his mind (not the other way around!).”
“Secondly, from the time you start the process to the time you leave, keep it simple and short. The longer you prolong the move, the more chance there is of him finding out.”
Remember that the longer you put it off, the more likely you’ll lose the courage you need to move out without him finding out.
Don’t panic. Stay calm. Take deep breaths
“Third and last; don’t panic,” says Diane. “Speak as little as possible. Twice my husband came home saying things like “What’s going on?”, and my heart raced but I said nothing. Then he explained his thoughts and they had nothing to do with my plans. Just breathe and go through the actions. You can deal with your feelings after, when you are in a safe environment.”
When you’re leaving your husband without his knowledge, you need to act as normally as possible. Don’t give him clues that you’re about to start a new life without him.
Create a new routine for yourself and your kids
“My last suggestion is not to be quick about divorce. That can heat up an already explosive situation. Just find a new routine for you and your kids, see a counselor and find yourself.”
You have time to get a divorce…right now, you just need to get settled. And, finding yourself is wonderful advice — it’s so important to stay connected to who you are. Your husband has worked hard to disconnect you from yourself and your loved ones; it’s time to undue the dastardly work he did.
A few final thoughts from Diane
“I have been lucky, he has not come after me. I had to see him at church four days later. I have good friends there who are supporting me because I said I was full of resentment and bitterness and I needed some time and space to improve myself. Generally, I have found that most people are not equipped to deal with abuse. It freaks them out and they avoid you after. In time, I will talk about it. Now is not the time. God bless you and good luck!”
What next? Read What to Expect When You Call a Women’s Shelter or Safe House.