Jennifer Farley’s ex responds by playing the victim, because that’s what abusers do

Yesterday we reported on a statement and several videos that Jennifer Farley, JWoww from Jersey Shore, posted on her website detailing years of abuse by her ex, Roger Mathews. It was harrowing and sadly typical. The videos she released showed him abusing her in their kitchen and taunting and mocking her in front of their children. She was upset and yelling at him in one video and he was clearly enjoying it and taping her as “evidence.” Roger has released a video responding to Jenni. Of course he turns it around, plays the victim and claims she’s lying because abusers ALWAYS do that. That’s how they control, abuse and gaslight their victims, by making themselves into the wronged, misunderstood party.

I am not going to report exactly what he says because f-k him. You can read about it on People, or if you have the stomach for it, go watch his video. He calls himself “heartbroken,” and says he’s going to address it in court and that “We’ve proven Jenni and her attorneys to be liars in the past.” Uh huh. He also posted a long legal rant from his attorneys attacking Jenni and claiming that her story is “fictitious, defamatory” and exploitative of “victims of domestic violence and abuse, which include men and women.” Dude, your client is on tape abusing her. There is no gray area there. Plus they mock her for doing sponcons for her job, with the insinuation that she’s doing this for publicity. It’s despicable.

Here are a couple of passages from the book I mentioned yesterday, Why Does He Do That?: Inside the Minds of Angry and Controlling Men by Lundy Bancroft.

The abuser’s highly entitled perceptual system causes him to mentally reverse aggression and self-defense. When Tanya attempted to defend herself against Emile’s life-threatening attack, he defined her actions as violence toward him. When he then injured her further, he claimed he was defending himself against her abuse. The lens of entitlement the abuser holds over his eye stands everything on its head, like the reflection in a spoon…

One of my areas of specialization is court-related work involving abusers who are physically violent or who abuse their children. I frequently encounter court personnel who say: “Well, she accuses him of abusing her, but he denies it.” They then drop the matter, as if the man’s denial closes the case. They also tell me: “He says she does the same things to him, so I guess they abuse each other.” This kind of denial and cross-accusation tells us nothing about whether the woman is telling the truth. If the man is abusive, of course he is going to deny it, partly to protect himself and partly because his perceptions are distorted. If he were ready to accept responsibility for his actions in relationships, he wouldn’t be abusive.

[From Why Does He Do That, Inside The Minds of Angry and Abusive Men by Lundy Bancroft]

Jenni Farley’s ex is an abuser and he’s continuing to behave like one. I really hope that they get a judge who sees through the lies and manipulation of abusers and that all of Roger’s custody visits are supervised by a court monitor.

photos credit: and via Instagram/Jenni Farley

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35 Responses to “Jennifer Farley’s ex responds by playing the victim, because that’s what abusers do”

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  1. Wow says:

    I mean…. the video showed him throwing her like a rag doll while their children cried. I’m not sure how her accusation is “false”. Ya did it bro, the nest cameras are really high quality and the footage is able to be trimmed, but its watermark layered so you can’t “alter” it.

  2. Jennifer says:

    Wow this is like reading about myself and I feel for her. Hopefully the judge is experienced and educated on domestic violence and its effects on children. Most judges consider the rights of an abusive father to outweigh the rights of a child to grow up free from violence and emotional abuse, sadly. And Why Does He Do That was the first book I read after my abuser finally went to jail so for the first time I was able to detach from him without fear of further violence and embarrassment/harassment at my job or my family receiving messages from him trashing my character. It was so helpful to put a name to his behaviors and helped me “out of the fog” of the gaslighting and manipulation.

    • Christina says:

      Jennifer, Im so sorry. What you describe was exactly what Lundy’s book gave me. My abuser named it other things, and all of the people around me confirmed it rather than what I was seeing and feeling with my own eyes. We live in a mysogynistic society. 11 years in court has taught me that.

      • Jennifer says:

        Yes, same here! And the minimizing that happens is astounding! If he doesn’t break a couple bones, bash your face in and put you in ICU, it’s like it’s not really that big of a deal…he “only” slapped you, he “only” pushed you, he “only” pinched you, etc. My ex called it “frogging” me when he punched me, like we were schoolboys playing around or something. Here’s JWOWW with *video evidence*, and he and his lawyers are trying to convince the court and the public that it was edited somehow!

    • me says:

      I can’t believe how many of us have experienced domestic violence. Look at these comments, so many of us ….

      I’m currently in the middle of my domestic violence case (pre trial hearings are going on).

      Everything in the comments section keeps resonating me and I’m shocked there is so many of us. This happens more than I thought.

      • Vanessa says:

        Me too. I’m terrified that the family court is going to put a higher priority on his access to his children rather than our collective safety. This was like reading about our exact situation.

  3. Zapp Brannigan says:

    Classic DARVO (DARVO stands for “Deny, Attack, and Reverse Victim and Offender)

    Another excellent book is by Irish author Don Hennessey “How He Gets into Her Head: The Mind of the Male Intimate Abuser” . He has 50 years experience in domestic abuse counseling and helping people get to safety.

    • tback says:

      I’ll throw another title into the thread… “The Verbally Abusive Relationship.” Most abusers resort to physical violence only when all other forms of abuse & control are not working. It is a progression of intensity as well as a cycle. It is life changing to be able to recognize and name the micro aggressions and outright abuses used by controlling, entitled men.

  4. Christina says:

    J Wow’s story breaks my heart. It is too common, and it pisses me off.

    My attorney hired a psychologist to read my file and write an opinion about my boyfriend and me. He read my statements and the police statements of what had happened, and lists of documents and emails between us. My attorney didn’t want the psychologist to meet me. He just wanted a completely objective opinion from a professional on paper to hand to the judge. After reading the file, he told my attorney that he recommended that I read Mr. Bancroft’s book. Now I give it to every girl and woman I can and tell as many men, women and boys about it as will listen. It saved my life and my daughter’s life along with all of the people who stood by us when the police didn’t believe me.

    He’s in jail now for something else, and my kid is applying to colleges and never wants to see him again. My husband and I are going to court in a few weeks to extend the restraining order for our family for another 5 years. Mr. Bancroft’s book was important to my life. Thank you for promoting it. It means a lot to me. I’m the person who wrote about it in your blog because of how it helped me. This blog helps me cope with it all. Thanks for doing what you do and giving me an escape from my mind. The after effects can stay. I wish JWoww love and strength. I just want to sit with her and listen to her and hug her.

    • me says:

      Going through a domestic violence case currently. My case just had the pre-trial conference last week. Its been a journey of healing. I’m going to buy this book.

  5. Bryn says:

    This reminds me of months ago when I read about her and her sons diagnosis with autism. She was saying how she was so worried about him for months because he wasn’t talking and her husband insisted nothing was wrong and didn’t seem to want help for the baby.

    • Jennifer says:

      I wonder if the doctor that diagnosed the autism was aware of the domestic violence. Perhaps the child isn’t autistic, but traumatised instead.

      • Bryn says:

        Could be possible I suppose, but I have no first hand knowledge or experience with autism or abusive relationships and their effects on children, so it would only be speculation.

      • Jennifer says:

        @Bryn unfortunately I have personal experience, the autism symptoms I worried about with one of my children turned out to be PTSD from domestic violence. I don’t know all the symptoms JWOW’s child has or anything about the child’s diagnosis, obviously it’s probably a correct diagnosis given by an actual physician who has treated the child. Just speculation from my personal experience with raising a child exposed to DV.

      • Jenn says:

        @Jennifer Educators warned my birth parents I was autistic, but it was (of course) complex PTSD and reactive attachment disorder. I still have the sensory-processing problems, plus serious chronic and autoimmune illnesses, including rheumatoid arthritis and Cushing’s Disease. Hypercortisolism is common in children of abuse.

        There’s a book called ‘The Body Keeps the Score’, detailing what we know about chronic physical illness, immunological problems, and adrenal dysfunction in the children who *are* fortunate enough to grow up into adults.

    • Erinn says:

      But then she also leaned into Jenny McCarthy territory following that. I stopped following her on instagram when she started going on about changing his diet before she’d talked about getting him into therapy. I don’t know. She lost me there.

      He struck me as not wanting to accept that anything was wrong, just in denial… but that was about the worst of it. He seemed like a dad who loved his kids, and who pulled a lot of weight when she was gone filming. I didn’t think they had a super healthy relationship because they were always both a mess on the show back in the day. But I also didn’t suspect abuse. It’s a shame, honestly.

      • Bryn says:

        Yeah I didn’t read that far in to it, just saw it in passing really.
        I knew a girl growing up who was a cousin of one of my cousins(sounds made up but not). She had a baby and I was around that kid for the first five years of his life and everyone knew he was different but it took years for him to finally be diagnosed as autistic. And now his mother tells anyone who listen that he wasn’t like this until after the vaccinations that he didn’t receive until he was three. Now I was around this kid every day and I noticed it from the beginning and even talked to his mom about how he would never look you in the eye and never made much effort to speak or communicate really. I keep wondering now if she was telling doctors that he had no signs until he was three, because I know for a fact it was always there. It’s such a reckless thing. She even criticized me for having my own kid vaccinated.

      • Erinn says:

        People suck. It’s awful. I have a sibling on the spectrum, and I know how hard it can be. But there’s SO many people out there who tie in a sense of arrogance about their child being PERFECT that damages so many children. The earlier interventions can be made, the more successful of an outcome you’ll have. The kind of people who ignore the signs and ignore the people around them are just doing more damage in the long run. And I get that nobody wants to think their child is different- but the more you do to create strong coping mechanisms early on the better. I think they should be really stressing that kind of thing to new parents right out of the gate – there’s a lot of different things to watch for that someone not familiar with autism might not know to pay attention to. But more importantly, I really wish there was some sort of meaningful ‘punishment’ for the people who gleefully spread misinformation surrounding childhood disorders and conditions. But at the end of the day… I’ll always choose a vaccinated autistic child over having a child who dies from polio or measles.

      • lucy2 says:

        I think you’re right, it can be very hard to deal with, and some people just can’t comprehend that THEIR kid isn’t “perfect” and look for someone, something to blame. I image it’s worse with social media, people comparing their kids to others and bragging.
        I just can’t with the people who blame it on vaccines and spread misinformation puts others in danger.

    • Jen says:

      I think Roger is awful and has traumatized his family, but just adding it’s pretty common for dads to have varying degrees of denial about autism. It’s obviously pretty difficult for the mom, but many men to have a hard time acknowledging the diagnosis as truth for months or even years. I think it has to do with the way it presents in babies and small children, which can usually be rationalized (for a while), and just the general lack of knowledge people have about it. Speaking up for anyone dealing with this because I know some dads of kids on the spectrum who are very engaged and caring, including my son’s, who didn’t start out seeming that way.

  6. tw says:

    Poor J Wow. I read a few chapters of that book last night. I wish I had read it 15 years ago. I’ve had “victim” and “sensitive” abuser boyfriends.

  7. Alissa says:

    I’m praying this doesn’t happen, but I can completely see them using super old footage of her drunk and in her 20’s getting into fights on Jersey Shore to try to show that she gets physical too.

    Which has ABSOLUTELY NO BEARING on the fact that her husband is an abusive, manipulative douche. But they’ll try to act like it does.

    • Bryn says:

      OH they will use that footage, I have no doubt. They might think that proves something but I would think the videos of him abusing her should mean more

      • Alissa says:

        They should, but look at Amber Heard. She did everything right – documented, gave her money to charity, etc, and she still is called a liar and a gold digger. It’s awful.

  8. Lady Keller says:

    I have been in a long term relationship that was emotionally abusive. The gaslighting is the worst part. You start to question your own sanity, you start believing it really is all on you, and your perspective becomes so skewed. Good for her for holding her ground. I hope she stays strong.

  9. minx says:

    He just has a mean, nasty face.

  10. Nicegirl says:

    Reading about this is really hard for me. I’m so proud of Jenni and happy for her and praying for her safety.

  11. Notyouraveragehousewife says:

    Ever since Roger came into the show years ago, I had a bad feeling about him. He reminded me so much of my ex boyfriend. Roger is so aggressive and hostile, his face was always blood red and he was always flying off the handle over simple things that make him angry. I was so scared of my ex. I would run out of our house to get in my car and leave then he would run to my car, jump on the hood of my car so I couldn’t drive away. He would also lift the hood of my car to disable it so I couldn’t leave. Other times I would run to leave and he would drag me to the backyard and physically restrain me on the ground with his full body weight on top of me. I would scream for him to get off of me. I was terrified! He never hit me or beat me but I consider holding me down on the wet ground to restrain me is a form of physical abuse. I was very happy during our first year together. I wanted to break up with him the entire second year we were together but I was afraid he may commit a murder suicide. The final straw was when he asked me if I love him anymore. I said no, I didn’t. The look he gave me was so terrifying! Then he told me to leave immediately! I flew to my car hoping he wouldn’t follow me to disable my car. He didn’t follow me so I made a clean break and never looked back. Also, when we got into an argument that wasn’t even that bad, he would pound his head on the walls, dressers and punch himself in the head. He even stalked me for years after the break up. My thoughts are with Jenni and her precious children. I can’t even imagine what they are going through.

    • me says:

      This reminds me of my experience.

      Oh the last time I was with my physically abusive ex boyfriend before we broke up…I had that running to the car moment. I was trapped in his car with him screaming at me, threatening me and when he parked the car I flew out of the car like a bat out of hell and sprinted to my car and fled.

      It was pathetic but sometimes I wished he would just hit me because it would be over faster than the hours about screaming and terrorizing I would go through when he would just rage.

  12. Eleonor says:

    I was beaten once.
    I had a talk with him a year later, and I have asked “do you know what you did to me? Have you realised?” And he reversed the past: “you have played your part too, to an extent it was self defens, you can’t simply tell that I have beaten you.” I have photographs with bruises, I have taken them as a reminder, I can’t watch them, but I wanted him to see,because after I run away, he refused.
    Sorry if this doesn’t make too much sense.

  13. Florida says:

    Oh it’s awful that so many of you have been through this. Sending hugs and goodness to all of you.

  14. Hmm says:

    He is using Instagram as a way to continue his abuse. So weird and his followers on Instagram believe him. Jenni doesn’t want him but she doesn’t want to keep the kids from him even Snooki’s said it with proof. He’s just mad that jwow no longer wants to be with him. I’ve noticed this about a lot of men… when a woman tries to get out of the relationship the men all of a sudden play victim .

  15. BasicBitch says:

    How does he still have 1.7 million followers??

  16. oandlomom says:

    That book Why Does He Do That is so amazing. I felt like he’d been watching my marriage and describing it. It felt uncanny until I understood that abusers follow a pattern. That book, and the Duluth Power and Control Wheel, forced my eyes open.