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February 26, 2012 2:39 PM   Subscribe

My long term relationship has ended. It was so long overdue. Even still it didn't happen the way I would have hoped. My partner raged at me for hours over who knows what. It wasn't the first time. Things turned physical and it was the ugliest scariest situation I can remember experiencing.

After that I realized that I wouldn't have the luxury of finding a new place. Family members showed up, packed a bunch of my stuff up, packed my pets up, and that's it.

My ex isn't taking this well and can't believe that i've done this "to them". We'd broken up before after a similar situation. I know I'm not supposed to play internet doctor but I feel very strongly that my partner may have bpd. And I am most definitely co-dependent. Realizing that was like a kick in the gut but definitely made me realize that I needed out.

So. I ended up leaving my apartment. Mine because I pay the bills. But both of our names are on the lease. Partner can not pay for the apartment. I've been looking for places and have had to face several facts. My credit is horrendous. I have pets. No co-signer or guarantor. One person said i would need to have 5 months of security. Obviously I want the apartment that I was living in. Is this completely foolish considering everything that happened? Is there some way to make this work if my former partner leaves? If not, how do I go about finding an apartment considering my awful credit and pets. I feel completely displaced and angry and bitter. I want my life back feel like i'm going nuts living in someone elses space.
posted by anonymous to Human Relations (18 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
 
I am very sorry that this is happening to you. This must have been so difficult, but good for you for getting out and making that first step toward a better situation.

If you are a woman, I strongly suggest you go to a local women's shelter for help in locating resources and legal advice (not that they will necessarily be able to offer the advice; they can hook you up with someone who can). They will have seen this kind of situation before and will be able to offer practical, concrete suggestions of what to do.

Even if you are not a woman: shelters and such tend to have a good grasp on what social services are available in a community--ask them to direct you to a more appropriate organization nearby.

Good luck and take care.
posted by hurdy gurdy girl at 2:51 PM on February 26, 2012


It sounds like you have a good family that's willing to go the extra mile to take care of you. Is there a chance you can stay with them for a while? Looking for an apartment is stressful, and if you can take a week or so to get your bearings and cool down, I think it'd be helpful.

Once you are less emotionally charged, it is possible to find landlords that are less fastidious about checking credit, although you may have to take some time to look. In my last apartment (about six months ago), I ran into about two landlords out of ten that did not ask for a paystub or a credit check. They simply talked to me for a bit and asked for a deposit. (I'm currently renting from one of those landlords.)

So, if you do have some place to stay while you can take a few weeks to look, you can likely find something.

I'm sorry this has happened to you, but I think you'll be better off in the long run once you work your way out of this material predicament.
posted by ignignokt at 2:56 PM on February 26, 2012


Things turned physical and it was the ugliest scariest situation I can remember experiencing.

If this means what I think it means, you should be contacting the police. They can help you keep this person out of your life for good. I would almost certainly contact your landlord, explain the situation, and see if there is anything they can do to help get him off the lease.

If, for whatever reason, you can't or won't do any of the above, you could probably find a room with college kids or in a big co-op house for cheap without needing a credit check or 5 months down. It won't be the quietest place you've lived, but you can save up quickly.

Good luck.
posted by two lights above the sea at 3:00 PM on February 26, 2012 [7 favorites]


If you can stay with your family while you save up some money, you can rent from a private person while paying several months in advance in lieu of a credit check. I have awful credit as well due to a domestic incident in my past (I had to leave MY apartment to an abusive partner), and moved out to NM with no job, but by paying several months to my landlady, she was willing to overlook that.

On preview - two lights above the sea, calling the police will not guarantee keeping an abusive partner out of anyone's life for good, they didn't even remove mine from my apartment (hence the leaving) and my landlords were surprisingly unsympathetic... I hope it works out better for the OP if they do decide to take that course of action, but I'm here to say it doesn't always work.
posted by patheral at 3:03 PM on February 26, 2012


I'm sorry for whatever happened to you in the past, patheral, but please don't discourage a potential abuse victim from calling the police.

I say potential because the meaning has not been made clear.
posted by two lights above the sea at 3:15 PM on February 26, 2012 [4 favorites]


Obviously I want the apartment that I was living in. Is this completely foolish considering everything that happened? Is there some way to make this work if my former partner leaves?

If I'm reading this correctly: you've moved out, Ex is staying in the apartment, but Ex probably can't pay the bills, and both your names are on the lease. Right?

Give notice at the apartment. You need to do this to protect yourself. If Ex can't pay the bills they'll be coming after you for the money. If both your names are on the lease, only one of you should need to give notice (maybe check tenancy laws in your area, but I'm pretty sure that's a general rule).

Now. If you want that apartment back, when you give your landlord notice tell them it's because of a breakup and you'd like to lease the apartment back on your own. They may be willing to do this since it saves them the hassle of finding new tenants, and if you've been a good tenant they'll want to keep you around.

The downside of that plan is that it might mean added friction with the ex. So maybe keep on trying for a new place (sublets are good place to look while you get your life back under control). But definitely give notice at your old apartment so you aren't responsible for paying your ex's rent.
posted by no regrets, coyote at 3:17 PM on February 26, 2012 [8 favorites]


Check out local resources for domestic violence - they usually have alot of expertise on the legal and practical aspects of whether or not you might be able to get the partner out of the apartment so you can re-occupy it. they might also be able to advise you on how to avoid doing more damage to your credit if the partner defaults on the rent and has to be evicted.

If that doesn't work, try a landlord/tenant agency for advice.

If there is no way your partner can afford to pay the rent, is there someone that he/she might listen to that you could approach and suggest that if he/she moves out, you will take over 100% responsibility for the rent so it doesn't hurt THEIR credit rating. (Assume that this person will be acting 100% out of emotion and nothing you say, no matter how logical will be heard. That's why a "dump it you" approach from someone he/she trusts has the best chance of working.)
posted by metahawk at 3:17 PM on February 26, 2012 [1 favorite]


Hey, just in case you are a man and aren't aware of this, there are sometimes domestic violence resources available to you too. Especially if you live in or near a larger city. It's worth a shot to look.
posted by cairdeas at 3:18 PM on February 26, 2012 [4 favorites]


Try googling things like "[your state] domestic violence victim resources". Try not to be bothered by labels like "victim," they're just ways to help narrow your search to useful results. Housing crises are extremely common with intimate partner violence, and you should be able to find local resources to help you untangle everything.

Best of luck.
posted by kavasa at 3:36 PM on February 26, 2012


If you do manage to get them out and you back in, don't forget to make certain the locks are changed.
posted by Occula at 3:41 PM on February 26, 2012


I'm so sorry, it's so scary, and things are going to stay hard for a little while -- but very, very soon, you are going to find that you feel immensely relieved of the constant fear and stress that your relationship kept you in. That will help a lot.

You've gotten great advice here so far -- a women's shelter is definitely a good idea, and continuing to stay with family and friends for awhile, though it will drive you crazy to have to deal with people in your space, will probably be a nice thing to have for the next few weeks.

I mostly stopped in to gently suggest that maybe you do not want to get that apartment back. After all, your ex knows where it is, and if they decide to turn stalker, your old apartment is too easy a target. Also, you might find as you start to heal from the trauma of the relationship that being in the place where they abused you is not at all good for your mental wellbeing.

Whatever you decide to do, I wish you the best of luck and I promise that things will be much, much better very soon.
posted by Made of Star Stuff at 3:44 PM on February 26, 2012 [3 favorites]


After that I realized that I wouldn't have the luxury of finding a new place. Family members showed up, packed a bunch of my stuff up, packed my pets up, and that's it.

I take it you're staying with family? I would be content with that for the moment. It's not ideal for anyone, but this is not an ideal situation.

My ex isn't taking this well and can't believe that i've done this "to them". We'd broken up before after a similar situation. I know I'm not supposed to play internet doctor but I feel very strongly that my partner may have bpd. And I am most definitely co-dependent. Realizing that was like a kick in the gut but definitely made me realize that I needed out.

It is good that you've come to that realization as the objective should now be about looking after yourself. If your partner does have BPD there will be a certain amount of emotional volatility that will go with that, particularly now that you've left. This is not for you to try to fix, it's just something to be mindful of.

Is there some way to make this work if my former partner leaves?

This is where the difficulty with the emotional volatility comes in - your partner is not going to be happy with you leaving and with you trying to get them to leave. You do need to protect yourself in terms of the lease. That needs to be your priority with the apartment. You may not be able to continue to live there because you may not be in a position to negotiate adequately with your partner without things becoming worse. Again, this is the time to look after yourself.

I feel completely displaced and angry and bitter. I want my life back feel like i'm going nuts living in someone elses space.

For the time being, this has to be better than what you've just gone through. I would really suggest trying to get away from your partner rather than continuing to have too much contact with them. Right now it might be very hard for you to find a place - but stay with family and/or friends if you can for the time being - it will be less emotionally draining on you.
posted by mleigh at 3:47 PM on February 26, 2012


You've been the victim of domestic violence and you have rights. If you have been assaulted (and it sounds like you have) kicking your partner out of the apartment is probably as simple as filing a police report (YMMV depending on jurisdiction).

That said, if you do go back and have the police kick this person out you have to be realistic about the fact they will know where to find you. If you feel like you might have a change of heart and let this person back into your life you are probably best to just stay away.

In reading the above answers I highly recommend you reach out to your local domestic violence support, whether that be victim's services via the police (usually totally anonymous and does not require a police report per se), there are also lots of non-profits that exist in this area.

If you contact the mods they can post any comments you might have, and posting the country/province/state/etc where you live might help people give you specific resources and links.

Good job in making the first move, I wish you well in the rest of your fight for freedom.
posted by tiamat at 4:28 PM on February 26, 2012 [1 favorite]


follow no regrets, coyote's advice to get your apartment back.
posted by jbenben at 4:28 PM on February 26, 2012 [1 favorite]


I'm sorry, but I think you need to give up the idea of returning to that apartment: it would not be safe for you to be living where your ex can easily find you. Talk to the landlord and get your name off the lease, get your name off the utilities, don't worry about how or even if your ex can pay the bills: that is most definately Not Your Problem.

Please do not return there, or if you really, really need to (say to retrieve a pet) only go with a large friend or two for physical backup --- or frequently, the police will escort you, especially in a domestic abuse situation.
posted by easily confused at 4:47 PM on February 26, 2012 [6 favorites]


One way to find another apartment without a credit check: ask the landlord if he has other properties. Best not to let your ex know where you've gone, though.
posted by desjardins at 10:26 PM on February 26, 2012 [1 favorite]


It seems to me that your partner is going to be wanting you back as soon as possible since he can't pay the bills and keep the apartment without your help. If you do go back to him, you should also visit a Domestic Violence Center and pick up some literature that will show you how going back into the situation - probably because he says he's sorry and it'll never happen again and he loves you and can't live without you - is simply setting up the situation to repeat itself time after time after time - this is what women, and men, go through who are living the DV life. And nearly every one of them think their situation is "different." Please, please don't get into that game, no matter how hard it is to break free of it; you've taken a big step already, now follow through. The people at the DV Center will help you - let them. They have resources and connections and compassion, and you need all those things.

Staying in the same apartment would be a disaster - at least it would seem so to me. He'd know exactly where to find you and how to get in and when you were there and when you were gone, and he'd always be able to come up with some reason he needed to stop by. And the second reason I think it's a bad idea is that you'd be walking right back into the same environment you shared with him and the only thing missing would be him; that would be enough by itself to break me.

Try to drum up the energy to find someplace else and start a new life - even if you have to move out of town or go visit a friend who has moved to another state and scout out the living and working situation there - whatever it takes - just fake it 'til you make it. It can be done and I sincerely hope you can manage it. Let others help.
posted by aryma at 10:40 PM on February 26, 2012


I was once given some great advice here at AskMefi, telling me to call the National Domestic Violence Hotline. At the very least, they can help you figure out what your rights are and I'm sure they'll be able to point you to resources in your area. Perhaps they can put you in touch with your local DV shelter -- regardless of where you want to go in terms of pressing charges or not, they can most likely let you know what you need to do to get your apartment back, if that's something you're insistent upon.

I'm so sorry for you.
posted by youandiandaflame at 5:17 AM on February 27, 2012


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