"Amit grew increasingly abusive in different ways."
A woman has opened up on the 12-year-long abuse she suffered at the hands of her husband. She later discovered he had taken his own life.
Dimple Patel met Amit in 2004 after being introduced by a mutual friend. The pair married in 2008.
Looking back, she said he already started emotionally abusing her but she did not recognise it. Amir told her that his family were superior to hers.
However, at the same time, he claimed he had an unhappy childhood, making her believe he was vulnerable.
The first instance of physical abuse happened in May 2008 during a flight home from their honeymoon in Miami.
It happened during a row over expensive whiskey purchased in duty-free.
A cabin crew member saw him slap Dimple across the face and asked if she wanted to move seats. She spent the rest of the flight alone and speechless.
Dimple recalled: “He didn’t apologise, but I told myself it was a one-off, even questioning if it was my fault.
“After that, Amit grew increasingly abusive in different ways.”
They bought their first home in 2010, but Amit claimed he had no savings, despite his good job as a merchandiser.
As a result, Dimple used £35,000 of her own savings for the deposit.
This became the start of his financial abuse as he regularly hid money from her.
Dimple said: “When our first son was just under a year old, Amit punched me in the neck during a row.
“Later that year, he slapped me in bed and I called the police, who came to the house and cautioned him.
“I hoped getting the police involved might shock him into changing, but the violence continued – usually when he’d been drinking.
“Afterwards he’d bang his head off the wall, wailing with remorse.
“A few times I told him to leave, but he’d refuse, threatening to put me on the street.
“I didn’t want to break up our family and felt too ashamed to tell anyone what was happening.”
The abuse escalated after their second child was born.
Despite earning far more income, Amit told Dimple it was only fair if they equally split the bills.
“Most months I had no money for myself, while he always had cash for going to casinos alone.”
In 2014, Dimple returned to work following maternity leave and told a colleague about the abuse, who encouraged her to leave Amit.
However, Dimple said she loved him and believed he was “damaged” from an unhappy childhood and that she could “fix” him.
But the abuse continued, with Amit body-shaming her and telling her not to wear makeup.
This led Dimple to become withdrawn, cutting herself off from friends and hiding bruises from family members.
Despite being scared, Dimple wanted to make their marriage work.
Her family was aware of the unhappy marriage but did not know about the physical violence.
After the birth of their third child, Amit began staying out all night.
He would return home in the morning, drunk, having lost thousands of pounds at the casino.
“If I dared question him, he’d slap and shake me, accusing me of having anger issues and scaring the children. I know now that he was gaslighting me.”
In July 2016, an intoxicated Amit threatened to kill himself and their children. He then called the police and claimed that Dimple was holding him hostage.
Amit was taken to hospital but was later discharged after refusing psychiatric treatment.
Dimple told The Sun: “I couldn’t believe it – I’d thought they were going to section him for his own protection and ours.
“I did everything I could to avoid triggering his rages and protect the children, but the older they got, the more their awareness grew.
“When Amit would yell and shove me, the kids would hide until he calmed down.
“And if they dared to disturb him when he was watching the TV, he would fly into a rage.”
In November 2019, during a money-related argument, Amit pushed Dimple to the floor and repeatedly kicked her. She managed to run to another room and call 999.
Amit fled but was later arrested at his parents’ home. He was charged with assault and battery.
Dimple said: “I was hugely relieved. While he wasn’t remanded in custody, his bail conditions meant he had to live with his parents.
“But I was still so scared, I applied for a non-molestation order, which meant he was banned from our house for a year and only allowed online contact with the children.”
His trial was set for April 2020 but on January 18, 2020, Dimple received a voicemail from her father-in-law.
The voicemail explained that her in-laws had returned home from a holiday and found Amit had taken his own life.
Dimple revealed: “The police arrived shortly afterwards.
“While the kids watched the film, unaware of what had happened, I sat with three officers in a state of shock.”
Dimple initially blamed herself but when officers showed her the suicide note, she was enraged.
Amit had falsely blamed Dimple for everything. The note read:
“I hope you take pleasure in telling the kids why I’m not around now… you never loved me, you lied…”
She said that even though Amit had died, he was still trying to “control and punish” her.
Dimple went to his funeral as her way of taking back control and saying goodbye on her own terms.
She continued: “A year on, I’m still coming to terms with what happened.
“I’ve had counselling and while the children don’t have many happy memories of their dad, they now understand that Amit wasn’t well in his head.
“For now, I feel very happy being single, raising my sons, and I’m not sure I’ll ever be with someone again.
“Every day I believe in myself more and recognise that none of what happened was my fault.
“Amit was an abuser with mental health problems and addictions, and I only wish I’d escaped him sooner.”