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By | September 16, 2009

After the sociopath is gone: No Contact begins in my head

He was arrested at 9:14 am on May 21, 2003. It was a sunny, blue sky morning. The birds were fluttering and twittering in the trees. The river flowed lazily by, meandering through the forest, dappled with sunlight, sparkling, clear.

We were in hiding. Had been since February 26 when we’d fled the city we lived in 1,000 miles away, heading west, heading to the US, he’d said. “I’ve got money there,” he insisted. “I’ll just leave this mess to my lawyers to fix. No sense hanging around waiting for them to get it cleared up. I’ll let you go once I’m out of the country,” he promised.

Like all his promises, like everything he’d ever said and done, it was all a lie.

On that morning in May, the lies fell apart and he was exposed. Two police officers walked in and took him away. “Are you on drugs?” one of them asked me as I sat, rocking back and forth, back and forth in a chair watching the scene unfold, a quiet, low keen seeping from my mouth. I was catatonic. I was not on drugs.

They took him away and I sat surveying the mess around me, trying to make sense of the mess of my life.

I hadn’t heard of No Contact with the abuser, but I knew after months of no contact with family and friends, I had to make contact with someone beyond the narrow confines of my world with him. He was gone. I had to reach out for help.

I called my sister who lived an hour away from where we had been in hiding. She didn’t ask questions. She didn’t yell or scream at me. She came and got me.

No Contact was the only possibility. He didn’t have my sister’s number and it was unlisted. He did keep calling the couple who owned the cabin where we’d been staying. They called my sister, she advised them not to give him my number. He called my mother. She hung up on him, even though she felt it was rude. “He’s the man who almost killed your daughter,” I told her. “It is not rude to hang up on him. It’s vital to my well-being.”

I didn’t want to think about him but at times, my mind betrayed me. I’d be walking down a street and hear a cell phone ringing and it would be his ring. My mind would leap to thoughts of him. What was he doing? What was he saying? What was he telling people about me?

I posted No Trespassing signs in my mind. When thoughts of him intruded, I’d mentally hold up a sign and send the thoughts back to where they’d come from, my fear, my shame, my guilt.

I knew that one day I’d have to go through the thoughts of him and examine them, but for now, I had to give myself time to grow stronger. For now, it didn’t matter that I had to rid myself of his presence in my mind. That would come later. At first, what mattered most was that I build emotional strength so that I could eventually deal with thinking about him without making myself sick.

In those first minutes and hours and days weeks and months away from him I focused my thinking on me. On what had happened inside of me. On what I had to do to become healthy again.

The police asked me for a statement about anything I knew about his illegal activities. I had to do the right thing to show myself, remind myself; I was capable of doing ”˜the right thing’.

I wrote it down. It hurt. I was scared. What would he do when he found out I had ”˜told’ on him?

I couldn’t let my mind go there. The monster of him in my head was bigger than the reality of him, out there. Out there he was in jail. I had to escape the prison of my mind trapped in thinking of him. I held up my No Trespassing sign.

Focus on doing the right thing, I told myself.

I kept writing.

To remind myself that I was so much more than that five year relationship, that my life was made up of so many other important things than just ”˜him’, I made a list of things I’d done in my life that I was proud of. Being a mother topped my list. “What kind of mother are you really”, the voice of self-denigration whispered. “You deserted your children.”

I posted STOP signs in my head. Whenever self-doubt, negative self-talk invaded, I held up my STOP sign and consciously reframed the negative into more loving words. “I am a courageous woman. Yes, I did something I never imagined I would ever do as a mother. I was very, very sick. And now, the poison is gone and I am healing. I can make amends. I am reclaiming my life. I am courageous and growing stronger every day.”

I kept adding to my list of things I’d done that I was proud of. In Grade five I raised $122.00 for a charity by walking 21 miles. I was an honor student. Got a scholarship. I ran the marathon. Wrote a play with a group of street teens and produced it.

My list reminded me that I was capable of living in the world beyond the narrow corridor of his abuse. It reminded me that I was a competent, caring human being.

At first, I wanted to cry and cry and cry. At first, I did. And then I knew I had to build emotional muscle, to build my willpower. I gave myself a time limit for crying. It began with ten minutes on the hour, every hour. That was when I let myself cry. The other fifty minutes I had to do at least one constructive thing (Work on my resume. Phone about a job interview. Take a walk.) to take me one step further on my healing path. The ten minutes every hour became eight and then five and then only every two, then three, then four hours. Eventually, as I kept doing more and more things to take me on the healing path, I forgot to cry.

At first, I wanted to tell everyone my story. Talk about what he had done. How hurt I’d been. How confused and scared and lonely. At first, I thought everyone knew what I’d been through just by looking at me. Couldn’t they see the scars? Couldn’t they see my pain? I couldn’t understand how the world could be so normal. I needed to embrace its normalcy. I enforced No Contact in my speech. I could not talk of him. I could not tell the story again and again. The only time I had permission to talk about him and what had happened was when I went to an Alanon or Co-Dependents Anonymous meeting. There, with the safety of the 12-steps empowering me, I could speak up and give voice to my pain, my fear and my hope.

The greatest danger wasn’t contacting him. He was in jail. My greatest danger lay in thinking about him. In remembering those gentle moments where I had felt his ”˜love’ embrace me.

“It was never love,” I reminded myself. “Love doesn’t almost kill you.”

I kept working at No Contact in my mind. Good times or bad, thinking of him wasn’t healthy for me. I kept my No Trespassing signs posted. My STOP sign handy. Over time, it became easier. A cell phone ring wouldn’t startle me. My body wouldn’t jerk suddenly at the sound of a car backfiring, or a door slamming. I wouldn’t cry at every turn. Sit in silence immersed in sadness. Thoughts of suicide were arrested before they even saw the STOP sign in my mind. I was building my will to survive. My will to rejoice in living life fully every day.

In time, it became easier to live without the fear I would always be the abused woman I had become. In time, it became easier to live with the possibility of life beyond his abuse, beyond the lies he’d told me about who I was, what I could do, where I could go and who I could never be. It became easier to believe in me. It became easier to talk, about him, about what had happened, about what I’d done to betray myself and those I loved without falling into despair. It became easier to love myself, not as an abused woman, but as a woman who had the courage to face her fears, to turn up for herself and love herself, exactly the way she was. A woman capable and confident enough to let go of abuse and claim her right to live freely in her own skin.

I was an abused woman. Today, I continue to grow and heal, to love myself for all I’m worth and to give myself the space and time to let feelings flow through me without having to stop them.

Today, I give myself the grace of loving myself enough to know, I am okay. The things I did that hurt those I love, and me, are nothing compared to the things I do today to create a beautiful life all around me. I am not measured against what happened back then, my value is in what I do today to make a difference, in my life and the world around me.

Today, he was just a moment in time, a small segment of my life. He has no value in my life today. My value is in how I live, what I do, say, how I think and look at the world through eyes of love. Today, my value is in me.


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ANewLily

Dear Louise,

Thank you for this article and its inspiring message of your life and strong, courageous reaction to the abuse.

I have a lot of questions, particularly about your children, but those can wait. I want to tell my recent “story” and how your timely articles helped me gain NEEDED clarify!

Last week I was diagnosed with celiac disease (severe) and with a large malignant tumor in my transverse colon. I learned this news with no upset. I know my serenity was due to the knowledge of facing and surviving other life-treatening challenges, including my spouse of 46.5 years trying to kill me 7 years ago.

I know this serenity is real because I just talked to a cancer survivor at the drug store and told her my news. She commented on how serene I was facing this challenge — so even others can see it.

I’m not even sure I can describe the horrid feelings I have experienced since I told DD#2 (age 51) the news, asking her not to tell her father because I remain afraid of him. At first, she insisted on coming out (1800 miles) to be with me. Somehow, I felt “good” about this desire because until my sister (her aunt) died a little over a month ago, she hadn’t even talked to me for SIX years.

Then, last night, she said she probably wouldn’t come because she “had work to do.” It reminded me of so many instances when I was sick and that was her father’s response for not “being there” for me that I was thrown into severe confusion.

I had already been concerned about seeing her because how when I was sick (meaning after the surgery) could I ever handle not talking about the “past”??

This morning when I awoke I “Knew” I didn’t want her to come. But, how can I tell her without hurting her feelings?

After reading your article, I realize that “hurting her feelings” is NOT my job. I and my feelings are what is important now.

Making decisions so as not to “hurt others’ feelings” (including through my long “marriage”) was one of my biggest mistakes!!

It’s hard to explain how your article helped me make another decision — I will not even tell our oldest daughter (age 55) and our only son (age 42).

Even as I left the drug store (and before your article) it became clear to me that I “owe” them nothing. Their decisions to shun me these past six-seven years (BECAUSE I left their father) are the basis of these consequences of not being informed.

The greater part of the story is that I have had serious health challenges ever since I left in Jan 2002 and faced ALL of them alone (with God ever present) but essentially no communication with them. When I left, my internist had told me that the 10 months of sickness before I left was due to the TOXIC stress of my abusive “marriage” and I should leave or be dead within the year. I told my S?P:N this news and he knocked me unconsious and within days I was GONE.

Of course, he told them that I was lying and that he had never abused me in any way. It never occurred to me that our children could believe HIS lies for six long years — except that all four of them live with their families in the same communicaty. (Our son moved 35 miles away a year ago). I became very convinced he would hurt them if they changed their allegiance so I have just endured their sunning — with intense grief — and more health problmes due to the stress of it all.

I’m rambling. I hope this makes sense. But my point is that after reading your article, I AM going to focus JUST on myself.

I may accept DD#3’s (age 45) offer to come. She has communicated with me weekly (and daily during my March 09 hospitalization) and is an experienced surgical nurse — who had shown compassion that her siblings have not. But, I’ll see what transpires with her yet before making a firm decision.

The bottom line is that I have cared for myself (with God’s guicance) these past years just tine. I can “do this” alone, too.

skylar

Louise, thank you for your story.
It is a reminder for me that the past was just a fantasy he painted and I believed. Nothing was real, yet it could have killed me. How strange is that?

Lily,
I’ve been missing you and wondered where you were. I also have celiac disease – well, I’m not positive because I’ve never been tested, it may just be gluten intolerance. Either way, I have been off gluten since the early 1990’s. It seems difficult at first but it is actually very liberating too. And of course my health improved dramatically when I took control of my diet.

If you, at any time, need to talk about the gluten free lifestyle, I would be more than happy to share what I know and what I do.

Much love and hugs to you.
Skylar

ThornBud

Lily,
i dunno words i could posibly tell u. me too, i wish if u could see me now, just one eyes sight could say more than any word. what i wanted to write here and now, and for the future unhappy members is:
No one will die before his moment comes. We can not change it. We can not change what was writen to be, BUT we can change our lifes! It is not important how long we are gonna live, BUT IT IS IMPORTANT – HOW. And You, u chosed honourable life, being true to urself, honest with urself, in peace with urself. No one can be honest with others, no one can be respected from others, no one can be loved by others, if he is not all of it, at the first place, with ownself.
Just give me ur hand, dear. We can go through…in fact, WE ARE GOING THROUGH.
Take good care of urself, for urself and for all the ppl who trust u and love u.
Huggs

ThornBud

Louise, thank u for posting this story.
Me too, i used to be writer. Besides it, i used to be scientist, and alot of it. He devaluated me in my own eyes, killed all my skils and will to live. At the moment.
But not anymore.
Nomatter of how do i feel now, there are things i left behind, there will always be monuments we left,to remind someone on our posibilities, actions, deeds.
Behind US will stay something good. Behind them will stay nothing but dirt on the road. And rains will wash it, washing every sign they ever existed.

witsend

Dear ANewLily,
I am so sorry to hear of your health problems.

And I am humbled by your acceptance and serenity. You are one very emotionally strong lady.

I have come to believe the hardest things that we do in life…..We do alone. I never would have beieved this in my youth but I have experienced it in my own life many times.
The really “hard” stuff you do on your own.

BUT alone doesn’t have to mean without support! YOU might have to “fight” your illness (alone) as no one can do that for you, but it certainly might be easier for you if your daughter (the caring one) can be by your side. And if she is a nurse that is an added plus….

You are really awesome Lily…..It never ceases to amaze me how strong the human spirit can be.

ANewLily

Louise, I hadn’t anticipated your reaction of approval of my newly made decision regarding my family who had shanned me for years! I was overwhelmed and gratified by the visual of you jumping up and down with approval.

I have never been “into” what people think of me so I just posted my story without expectation. I realize that sometimes it is really GOOD to know when people approve of you. I’ll change my mindset!

Thanks for the link to CaringBridge. I believe I was supporting the family who started it when their infant was very sick and then didn’t survive. Terrible — but I can’t remember their names — but haven’t forgotten them.

Skylar, I’ll remember your offer to share dietary info about a gluten-free diet — but not right away (I don’t think) All day I’ve been on the phone obtaining all kinds of info regarding the upcoming surgery (sept 29) and am totally worn out with “Your call is important to us..” and then waiting to speak to someone for 20 or more minutes!

Maybe I can post to Donna and ask her to give you my email address?

Thornbird, I totally identified with you about how our “bad men” try to degrade our talents and accomplishments. But, you are right that what our real accomplishments are will be lasting after we’re gone.
theirs won’t!! (BTW, I’m not afraid to die. I know where I will spend eternity.)

Witend, I never fail to pray for you about your troubles. You have a strong spirit, too! You are so correct about all of us having to do the really “hard” stuff alone from being born to passing out of this life into the next. We never dreamt that we wouldn’t have a life partner to share the burdens of life. dod we? but it wasn’t meant to be. For me, I am VERY glad I escaped. My days alone are so much better — even with everyday challenges! I know my Ex S/P/N wouldn’t be supportive in any way during this current health crisis so I am SO glad he isn’t anywhere around — even if occasionally his “empty suit” stuff tries to nterfere periodically in attempts to bring me down! He hasn’t succeeded yet — and he won’t!

Note: I already sent an email to DD#2 that I’d rather that she didn’t rearrange her schedule to come out here. I feel peaceful about it. Her reaction will be hers all by herself. (But, I’ll never stop loving her.)

It isn’t the first time I’ve thought it but today more than most I’m so SORRY that I didn’t know what I know now and had never accepted a second date with him. I gave my children the WRONG father. I had no idea that my decision would influence my children so much. But, life doesn’t have a rewind button — so we press on.

skylar

Lily, whenever you are ready you may have my email address so we can discuss eating a gf diet. It can be as simple as eating only foods whose ENTIRE origin is recognizable: meat, fruit, vegetables, corn and rice. No additives, no fillers. Spices are used but only the ones I know for sure don’t use flour as an anti-caking agent.

I also gave up sugar and use only agave syrup. Eating this way is very easy. But some people don’t want to give up baked goods, so there are lots of cookbooks and baking books for making “fake” bread and “fake” anything that usually calls for wheat. I am adept at these recipes but no longer bother. I just don’t need that type of food very often.

You are so right that there is no rewind button. Most of us would have pressed it, but since we can’t we need to ask ourselves what kind of lemonade can I make with these lemons I’ve been handed? Because thats all we got from the P’s – lemons.

Ox Drover

Dear Louise,

As always, your posts and articles “hit home” and NC is definitely one of those things that is ESSENTIAL to healing.

EVen if someone shares parenting with a psychopath in which there is no way to totally go PHYSICAL NC, the EMOTIONAL NC is so important. To keep them OUT OF OUR HEADS & HEARTS is so important.

Thank you for a wonderful article.

For me physical NC was so much easier than EMOTIONAL NC, but that coming now, first with some of the psychopaths, and now with the rest.

Easy

I could not tell the story again and again.

This is a individual time thing for each of us. At some point you will stop telling your personal story and you will not think of him every day. Because Life does not depend on him! Your life depends on you!

neveragain

Thank you for the wonderful post. I wish I had read it about two years ago! I think you made a wise decision about putting off thinking about him at all until you were stronger. Very wise. That may be what bothers me about advise to “heal” by working through past traumas, etc. That is all fine, perhaps, but first…get strong and the best way is NC. I love your stop signs and no trespassing signs. PERFECT! My “wallpaper” on my computer is a picture of barbed wire stretched out, to remind myself to have firm boundaries….and if someone pushes against them and gets hurt…that is their problem. The barbed wire is right there in plain sight!

Wonderful, wonderful post.

And I’m so sorry for what every one is having to deal with. I’m still dealing with not being able to eat solid foods, started when the P started, and I’m still hopeful I will be able to eat again.Hugs to us all!

eyeswideshut

Whenever, anytime, I feel downtrodden in the journey towards standing up for myself, taking care of myself, being alone, there is always courage to be found here. A wonderful post, and good advice. I am just now getting beyond saying “what an a–hole” outloud several times a day, and it has been almost two years.

A New Lily, thank you for sharing and know you have our “virtual” and real support. I so hope your children come round in their thinking, and that it will never be too late for you to forgive them being taken in by the P. I hope none of them have the evil gene and are simply brainwashed.

For what it is worth, my ex P contributed to the breakdown in my relationship with my daughter from a prior marriage, and we were very testy- sometimes incommunicado for 17 years. We now talk several times a week and are supportive and loving towards each other.

I so so hope that your children will see beyond whatever smoke and mirrors your ex is flashing for them and you will have a chance to reunite, in peace and happiness. And I so respect your decision to let it not matter. That you are focused on yourself and healing. That setting boundaries, even to a loved one, is a basis and foundation for an honest relationship.

And isn’t it wonderful how right it feels..how uncomplicated..when we act in complete honesty, without conflict with our own needs… because as said earlier in the thread, all the really hard stuff we do alone.

Peace and love,

hens

M.L.Galllagher This is a wonderful article – I read every word intently – thanks.

Vision

Dear Louise,

Although my situation (s) in my life with SP’s have not been as horrible as yours and others, your experiences I could identify with and I felt your emotions and your fight at the NC…..

I have also used the trick of a no trespassing sign in my past to stop me from thinking thoughts that were negative and should have been forgotten…

I picture a strong little old woman, with an apron, a long dress and granny glasses, rocking in a rocking chair which is in front of a room and she is holding a broom. When my mind wandered to the “negative thoughts” she was up and sweeping me away from the door with the broom. She then tells me that “it will be okay, honey, but there ain’t no how no way you’ll be able to think about that today, not with me here..”

A little wacky I suppose, but it sure works. Like your stop signs.

You are very strong and your article shows how NC is the first step to healing……Thanks you for the encouragement and the enlightenment….

Ox Drover

Dear Vision,

That little old lady is ME, but instead of a broom, I have a cast iron skillet and if you get down on yourself, I “boink” you on the head. Laugh! Good idea!!!!

Dear Eyes,

Glad to see you are still lurking here. have missed you!!!! Stay around, we need your posts!

Vision

Dear OxDrover,

LOL….That is funny!!……Hey, that is right. I remember in some of your posts you boinking us upside the head!! I think I will change from a broom to iron skillet and a clunk on the head, since it takes good whack for me to get it through my thicker skull…..In the meantime, could you cook up some fried green tomatoes? …..I just love them…..I’ll bring the fried chicken…..

Thanks and now I will have more power to my guardian….!!

Ox Drover

Dear Vision,

Be glad to cook the fried green tomatoes how about some friend squash, corn bread, friend okra, and a bit of venison stew? I’m in a snit today cause when I went to grind some corn meal my electric grinder motor fried and so i am short on corn meal, but if you come, I will use what I have to make you supper!

Actually, I DO cook mostly in cast iron, it is the original NON-STICK COOKWARE and it never wears out or gets dents. “Threatening” my sons with a “cast iron attitude adjustment” has always been a family joke around here! I’m not even sure when it started, it just “always has been’ one of those family jokes. I know on Love Fraud it started with me boinking Henry for being so DOWN ON HIMSELF and it sort of “grew” from there as “love taps” LOL With people “borrowing” my cyber-castiron skillet” if I wasn’t around.

My husband used to complain that he had never had ALL the fried green tomatoes he wanted so one day I fried a turkey platter full and he ate those, and I did another turkey platter full and he ate THOSE and finally left one on the platter, so I told him “don’t EVER say you never had enough again!” My thing is watermelon and corn on the cob. I can make a PIG out of myself on either of those things but they must be fresh and home grown!

Vision

Dear OxDrover,

Mmmmm…..sounds so delicious….I love those fried green tomatoes, corn on the cob too with lots of butter and watermelon! We sure would pig out!!…..I gained 5 pounds eating corn on the cob one season….I am going to cook up some this on the weekend, going to the country and find some green tomatoes. That was good of you, cooking all those fried green tomatoes for your husband, I could eat at least a platter myself!

I love cast iron too….it even puts good iron into the food….

Love the “cyber skillet” love taps and welcome them when needed!!

Drooling now…..

Ox Drover

Comfort food!

Easy

Who runs The US Govt?

Connections And Then Some
2003-03-14, Washington Post
http://www.washingtonpost.com/…..A25”

The Carlyle Group [is] an investment house famous as one of the most well-connected companies anywhere. Former president George H.W. Bush is a Carlyle adviser. Former British prime minister John Major heads its European arm. Former secretary of state James Baker is senior counselor, former White House budget chief Richard Darman is a partner, former SEC chairman Arthur Levitt is senior adviser the list goes on. Those associations have brought Carlyle enormous success. The Washington-based merchant bank controls nearly $14 billion in investments, making it the largest private equity manager in the world. It buys and sells whole companies the way some firms trade shares of stock. But the connections also have cost Carlyle. It has developed a reputation as the CIA of the business world omnipresent, powerful, a little sinister. Media outlets from the Village Voice to BusinessWeek have depicted Carlyle as manipulating the levers of government from shadowy back rooms. Congresswoman Cynthia McKinney (D-Ga.) even suggested that Carlyle’s and Bush’s ties to the Middle East made them somehow complicitous in the Sept. 11 terror attacks. It didn’t help that as the World Trade Center burned on Sept. 11, 2001, the news interrupted a Carlyle business conference at the Ritz-Carlton Hotel here attended by a brother of Osama bin Laden. Former president Bush, a fellow investor, had been with him at the conference the previous day. Bush[‘s] primary function is to give speeches for Carlyle that attract wealthy foreigners in places where the former president is especially revered, such as Asia. The company has rewarded its faithful with a 36 percent average annual rate of return.

Note: If the above link fails, click here. To understand the amazingly powerful role of this low-profile, yet extremely wealthy and influential group, click here to view free a 48-minute documentary shown on Dutch national TV which clearly depicts the depths of corruption and deceit at the highest levels of government. You will be thankful that you watched this highly educational film.

eyeswideshut

Dear Easy, Yup…the P’s are everywhere. And coporations are modeled on sociopathic behaivior- they meet all 13 of Dr. Hare’s list. Yet 80% of our economic activity comes from small and medium sized businesses. As we speak Wall St. is bundling a new speculative product (life insurance policies) that profit from people dying early. Lovely. ( I could dig for the link if anyone cares). Oh…then there is the credible research that swine flu was made in a lab, and just go ahead and google “forced vaccinations” if you are not in the mood for sleeping anytime soon. Very profitable. 4 billion doses being ordered. Do the math. Credible research also supports the notion that vaccines accelerate the mutation and severity of viruses, and do very little to prevent the disease itself. Rant rant rant etc.

Not to be too off topic or cynical, gang, but why does “chit” float??? Why do we have all these mysoginistic power hungry, without consience P’s running things…aghhhhhh.

Oxy, maybe we need hundreds of thousands of skillets to go on a good march with.

And Oxy, thanks for the kind words. I was miraculously able to get a job recently ( I am 58 and have been self employed for decades, everyone said it could not be done) and otherwise crazy busy, (had to sell the farm and move etc…thank you exP).

Then to top it all off, a judge just rescinded my brilliant court order, that took 18 months and lots of $$ I could not afford to spend to get. Arrrrgh. Anyhow, we will apeal if necessary, as we followed protocol etc, and the judge has tossed the court order on a technicality/ Harrummmph.

Weird thiing tho? I am no longer afraid. I will cope. I will be in it for the long haul and wear the bastard down. Represent myself. My ex P appears to be seriously off his game. They say they go downhill with age, and I think he is sort of losing touch with his many fake realities. Scary, but just. IMHO.

I will take my cue from “our” Erin Brockovitch and stay calm and be informed. My troubles are nothing compared to what some of you have indured, survived and thrived.

Peace,

geminigirl

re comfort food, I did this dish on the weekend my new “kids” came for lunch, and they loved it! As Muslims theyr not meant to eat pork, but their parents told them, eat everything, do everything, experience everything! Pretty good advice! here is the recipe, and its very cheap/ You buy about a kilo, to kilo and a half. of belly pork,{depending on how many people you have invited!} you know the strips of pork meat interlarded with fat, and the occasional tiny bones. Lay them flat in a large oven dish, I use a large oblong roaster dish. Then you marinade them overnight with this mixture.
Fresh orange juice,
balsamic vinegar,
Honey,
Plum sauce,
Soy sauce,
sweet chilli sauce
Dijon Mustard.
a bit of red wine to keep it moist.
I dont usually measure but roughly equal amounts of each one.except the mustard, around 1 tablespoon of that.
Cover tightly with foil, and bake for 2 hours in a medium hot oven, {I usually bake for one hour on high, then turn down for the last hour. Serve with a large green salad, baked potatoes, or basmati rice..It is sticky, unctuous, delectable yummy, and gorgeous, and not expensive!Yum!! geminigirlXX

Easy

Eyes wide open

deception & distraction where these not what our parasitic encounters used on us?
Thanks ! It’s really tireing to keep trying to get some people to understand or comprehend!
I am sure I am mentaly disorderd (smile)

kim frederick

Vision and Oxy, can I top it off with some blackberry cobbler?

eyeswideshut

Easy, Have you watched the “Corporation”? I think you might enjoy. Very importent documentary. Available on line at Information Clearing House.com.(left side of page under videos)

Bottom line, if being a P is the mask of sanity, we are living in an asylum with the patients in charge. And yes, those that question are being called “crazy”.

Just like our ex P’s projected.

And to the rest of you enjoying you virtual meal, I can virtually taste it. : )

Sarasims

I really enjoyed the article and found it to have some great recommendations with STOP signs and NO TRESPASSING!

It’s been 9 months since the true “emotional” connection to my SP ended. I guess that’s the appropriate term. It’s 9 months ago that our relationship ended – the one I “thought” existed. Since then our contact has been on/off and very “hi/low” oriented….which many of you have read and commented on. He comes and goes and plays mind games with me then kicks me in the stomach telling me I’m crazy. Our last contact was about 1 month ago when he once again told me he couldn’t live without me that he was “BACK” and would never hurt me again. Funny – 1 week later he disappeared and yelled at me to “LEAVE HIM THE F**K ALONE”….honestly OMG! What a freak I now see!

I’ve been here at LF for about a week and the sense of support I feel from all of your presence on this site is incredible. Yesterday and days before I felt so strong – so determined. Today I don’t. When does the desire to hear from his go away? When does NC become easier? When do your head and heart finally decide to join forces? For the things that SP do to us – does anyone out there feel like they just want to “GET EVEN”….wreck havoc on their already SCREWED up life? Sometime that urge is strong! And I know it’s not right to lower myself to “their” level but when will they ever pay for the things they do to one person after the other? It’s just so unfair!

skylar

Sarasims,
I wish I could tell you when your emotions will stop dwelling on him. It’s been since May that I left and 95% of my thoughts pertain to him still. If you’ve read my posts, you will know I have a complete understanding of the uselessness of my thought behavior, but I’m still stuck. Part of the reason is because I still have other P’s to deal with, my P parents and brother and sister and the P trojan horse, even the P neighbors that he had gang up against me for no reason.

I’m pretty sure his argument to them was that I was arrogant and thought I was a saint for volunteering to do all the work for the community water association.

I’m going to acupuncture today, I’ll let you know if it helps.

skylar

Sarasims,
Yes I also think about getting even, but not in the way you think. The ultimate getting even would simply be to tell him what he is. He doesn’t know. He knows that he is different and he wants to know why, I can tell by some things that he said in the past. He thinks that the devil has him possessed. or that he has neandertal DNA (he looks like a neandertal with that big brow ridge).

What he really is, is a case of emotionally arrested development, still using the survival strategy of an infant to survive as an adult. The only evil here is the evil he is doing to his soul as it twists and warps, trying to grow but not being allowed to expand outside the same old, same old behavior of lies and manipulation.

kim frederick

Sarasims, I used to want him to go to jail. I wanted it so bad, but tried really hard to not wish bad on him. Instead I prayed for God’s will and left it at that. He spent the next eight out of twelve months in jail, and it had asbsolutly nothing to do with me. Eventually, they hang themselves, and even if they don’t, the only thing you can do is continue to work on yourself.

treat the whole process like an addiction. Look into Love addicts anonomous. Work the twelve steps and keep coming here. Lots of help and guidance to be gained. The heartache does go away. I promise. That is, if you stay NC.

luv716

Sarasims the answer to you question: does anyone out there feel like they just want to “GET EVEN—.wreck havoc on their already SCREWED up life? TOTALLY! that thought don’t seem to leave my mind.

Sarasims

Skylar, sounds like you and I are in the same position. I can relate to the 95% of the time. Just wondering, remember thinking, reliving. And my heart goes out to you having to deal with other Ps like you do. It can only make your situation that much more difficult. For me, he is a first and a REAL piece of work!

Kim Frederick, I too am with you. My S has a CPS record, previous jail time and all I want is him to go to jail and stay there!!! Where he can’t hurt anyone else! And thanks for the tip on Love Addicts!

Sarasims

I want to add that I’ve seen posts about NC and some of you wondering what you will do or say if and when they try to contact you again. I too think about that constantly!! Part of me wants him too so badly. Maybe to think he still cares and part of it was real?? But by now I should know that isn’t the reason he contacts me! However, if he did, I think I would say:

You are pathetically predictable! Take your small d**k and enormous ego and go f**k yourself LOSER! I’ve figured you out and I’m free of you!

I know I shouldn’t even think those things but it helps me stay MAD and focused I guess!

skylar

Sarasims,
being mad is ok, but you are still thinking of him as a normal human being if you think that response would hurt him. It wouldn’t. He would like you to show ANY emotion. It’s what he feeds on. He loves knowing that he hurt you. Or that he can make you feel good. Either way, your emotional response gives him power.

So, the correct response is be BORING. No emotional response.
The only other way to hurt him is to say hurtful things, but in a boring tone. For instance, “it turns out you are a malignant narcissist, go google it. Gotta go. bye.” Or “your d**k is too small I like big ones, go google it. Gotta go, bye.”
Or, “You are boring me. call me, we’ll have lunch sometime, gotta go, bye”

Remember, these will cause narcissistic injury and they can be dangerous when they feel slighted. Unless you are certain you can protect yourself, don’t do it.

Ox Drover

To answer the question about “how long?” AS LONG AS IT TAKES. That is different “lengths” of time for each of us, and we will go back and forth between sadness, wanting them back, hating them, wanting revenge, crying, etc etc. rinse and repeat and rinse and repeat. AS LONG AS IT TAKES.

Keep in mind, this is the GRIEF process (google Elizabeth Kubler-Ross” and you will get some information on this grieving that will help you put some words and thoughts to the emotions you are feeling and realize that they are NORMAL.

Mainly DO NOT RUSH this, or set time limits on it by days, weeks, months or even years! It takes as long as it takes.

BE KIND TO YOURSELF. When you find yourself BLAMING yourself, realize you are “bargaining” and when you find yourself crying realize you are depressed, and when you find yourself angry, realize and admit you are justifiably angry.

One day you wil stop and realize that you have ACCEPTED what is, the reality of it all. Even then you may “back step” into anger or sadness, but each FORWARD step leads you closer to RESOLUTION of the grief and complete acceptance of it all, the PAST IS PAST, and it is OVER. Keep your faith in yourself. ((((hugs))) and God bless each of us!

Easy

I have always believed that each person who crosses our path in this journey , was meant to be! If the lessons didn’t have to be so hard to learn! But that hopefully helps us to not fall as hard again. And when at first we feel how horriable the lesson is, we heal to see how necessary it was. For our own good!

Sarasims

Skylar – OMG, ALL this time and I have never thought of it that way. But you are sooooo right! And yes, every response I’ve ever given his is that of emotion….trying to rationalize and make him understand that he hurt me, or being really angry – trying to hurt him like he hurt me. You’re right, it isn’t possible bc he isn’t normal! I see your point. You have really given me another view to reflect upon and I think I get it. Thank you for being here!

Sarasims

OxDrover, It really is a grieving process isn’t it? It is sad that so much of our precious time has to be spent hurting this way bc we are good people who were in the wrong place at the wrong time and encountered the S. But I do see your point. And I guess the bottom line is that when we ACCEPT the reality of it all and vow to go NC…..we DO begin to heal. No more “what if” he calls, “what if” he writes? It just simply isn’t a viable path for us any longer and we vow that to ourselves so that we can heal. Thank you for the strength and encouragement. And yes, faith in ourselves at this time I believe is more important than ever. Hugs back at ya!

neveragain

The P I was involved with wrote: “By the way, I remember the day, at age 35, that I first made the conscious
decision NOT to try to catch a snake. It was the first time in my life that I had even thought about it. Before, any snake was something to be caught, even rattlers. I don’t do that anymore, but on a recent trip caught 2, though passed on the rattler, (which came closer to getting me than any had come, ever before…)”

I share this because it is telling in so many ways. As a young teen, he had lots of snakes in his home. He professed to love them.So he had been catching them for a LONG time. So it is remarkable that he was 35 before he thought about the option of not catching them! This is a doctor. Very good at memorizing facts, but very immature in other ways. Notice he seems to contradicts himself about “I don’t do that anymore” (a P contradicting himself? What a shock, huh? :-))
And also notice what this writing reveals about impulse control, about flirting with danger, the lack of healthy fear.

A perfectly normal person could write all this I suppose, except the not thinking about something you’ve been doing for 20 years seems a bit remarkable, especially when you know others certainly raised the issue! P’s don’t think about what they don’t want to think about and it is DIFFICULT for them to think about ethical matters. They avoid it, get frustrated if they even try I’m sure. And I’m not sure how deeply he thought about the ethics, it may have been more just realizing he didn’t have to give in to his impulses each time. Who knows!!!

By the way, when we had just turned 16, he took me on a date to see a play. It was the Glass Menagerie which has snakes in it. It was the last night of the play. After the performance, he left me in the car alone, said he had to get something. He came back with a knotted pillow case and put it on my lap and drove off. He started driving and the pillowcase started moving. It was full of snakes! I had too much pride to show fear….and I’m sure I immensely disappointed him by my refusal to show any emotion about it. It was a sign of the thrills he got from upsetting people.

Again, by itself, it could seem like just a rather mean practical joke. But when you see it as part of a larger pattern, you begin to realize it is another red flag.

To later beat ourselves up for missing some of these red flags is unreasonable. Of course, many of their red flags are clearer, especially in retrospect.

neveragain

PS the note I quoted from was three years ago, I am NC of course!

Sarasims

justabouthealed – that’s interesting and very disturbing at the same time. My SP also had this love for snakes which I couldn’t understand at all. I thought it was just something that he did bc he thought it was cool. Now that I think about it, he led a very double life. The him that he wanted everyone to see….devoted dad, hard worker, sweet guy….but then he had this really dark creepy side that no one knew existed.

Another interesting point that they don’t think about what they don’t want to think about…considering whether it be ethical, moral, etc. When I first met him, he showed me this really compassionate caring side. One that “seemed” to consider right from wrong. Knowing he had done bad things in his past but wanting to change. Over time, of course that changed. When I finally figured out that he was with another woman while with me – and tried to figure out what I had done wrong, what was going on…I just wanted to talk it out…..his response to me was: “you spend too much time thinking, it is what it is, people will do what people do. I told you I was sorry, but I don’t want to talk about it ever again. Just leave it alone.” And that was it. It was his way or no way. And he CAN literally do things without EVER giving them a second thought. Turn the thought process off completely. People will do what they are going to do…..too bad! So what who it hurts. I even heard that he and this other woman he was seeing locked her small son out of the house when they were having sex and the child went to the neighbor who called the police!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! She’s just as bad as he is – so it wouldn’t surprise me at all. I think he’s finally met a SP woman.

The red flags were so very much there but I was so in love that it didn’t matter. I kept thinking he would have the “AHA” moment when he realized he had made a huge mistake and I was the best thing that had ever come into his life. But of course, I know have come to the realization that he is not capable of such a thought process. Nor is he willing or able to love bc his thoughts are not those of a normal, functioning human being. Now it is you and I who have to pick up the pieces of our good and caring hearts and find a new tomorrow full of happiness. One without the dramas of a crazy person in our life.

Sarasims

BTW – since I have decided and become determined to go NC, I have now learned that I will be forced to be at a function in which he too will be present. I am terrified! Although I know he will ignore me and act like I’m not even alive, the fear of being anywhere near him and how I’m going to act, consumes me!

skylar

The comment, “it is what it is” seems to pop up around Ps alot. They say it when they are describing bad people or behavior. They aren’t outraged by badness. They accept it.
And yes, they do like snakes, but I think it is because they think they are snakes. They feel their own behavior is snake like because it is based on the “reptile brain” that part of the brain that is most instinctive with no love or compassion, no philosophy or self-control.

skylar

Sarasims,
just practice being very cool, calm and BORING. At the function, act, do not be you. Be anyone else. Don’t let any emotion show, be bland and bored.

neveragain

“I told you I told you I was sorry, but I don’t want to talk about it ever again. Just leave it alone.”

So typical! First of all, they think words alone make it all better! No need for real remorse, for pledges to not to do it again, to ask that they be given time to show they mean it by ACTIONS, no attempts to make restitution……unless of course they WANT something.

And the entitlement…the right to tell YOU , the injured party, to leave it alone.

The P I was involved with HATED if I quoted to him from “old” emails…like 10 days earlier! Professing love! That was then, this is now.

They JUST DON’T GET IT.

Never will. Incapable.

Or if they do get it, they disregard it if it doesn’t suit their purposes which are always about them.

jillsmith

Thank you for this. It helped me to read this.

I’m going to stop holding STOP signs up in my head. It’s a great idea.

Congratulations on the marathon. I googled my name today, as I do from time to time to see what he posts about me and what searches he’s doing to find me. I ran into a post about people who ran a marathon for raising funds for breast cancer. I ran it right before my mom died of breast cancer. I went right back to that moment and felt good about myself for running it. I little bit of self pride came back to me and it had been a long time since I felt that feeling. It’s almost like I have forgotten what it feels like to be. . .well, to be ME. I liked the feeling. I think I’m going to start running again. I had forgotten how much I enjoyed it, as I have forgotten most of the things I enjoyed. Good job for reminding yourself of the wonderful things you did and of what makes you, you. Thank you for sharing.

jillsmith

Edit:

I meant to say, “I’m going to start holding STOP signs in my head”.

persephone7

I haven’t posted in a long time and didn’t follow through with NC. But I’ve started reading again and just absorbing what you all share – and I know
I need to ‘boink’ myself or be ‘boinked’ again over and over with this person in my life. Right now I’m sick with a terrible cold – he was supposed to be coming up this weekend with his son ‘to hang out’ with me and then no call or explanation. It doesn’t bother me, gave me time to just call in
sick one day – I had been out of town to see my sister who is so sick-I knew this cold was part of my needing to regroup – didn’t call him to make drama over it and the
usual response will be that he’ll call me in a few days(after he knows my
days off are over, weekend is over) and he’ll say ‘so YOU couldn’t pick up
a phone and call ME? This is what was going on….(usually something so
old like he broke his cell phone, someone in family died, had to go out-of-state, etc. ) And sometimes I spend the time mulling over whether it’s
me who is UNAVAILABLE, I fear he is really ok but I am the monster…

As to catching snakes, when I first read Sarasims post, I thought she was going to say SHE was no longer deciding to catch snakes – that’s how it struck me, that I’ve had a habit of having snakes cross my path
and going ahead and picking them up (and taking them home!) I even
had the situation literally happen to me this summer – walking a familiar
path by the river, saw a beautiful big snake on the path, was not a rattler
but I just sensed danger anyway and just turned around and took the path back to a street -way home. So I know my tendencies, to be attracted to men who are kind of ‘solo’ like myself, charming and need
compassion and ‘fixing’ – wasn’t my second marriage enough to put me
in the fire and I was lucky enough and smart enough to walk away?

So all’s not lost – I just empathize with all here – am contemplating not
even picking up when he calls, or as you say – just be boring – right now
I have other fish to fry (with Oxy’s skillet…) in getting myself and life
back in order. Thanks to all for listening and sharing.

Ox Drover

Dear Persphone,

How a bout I give you a BIG HUG for coming back instead of the boink you have already given yourself!!!! (((((HUG))))))

I am so glad you are back!

Now you are NOT the monster, but for some reason you are making choices that you really know are NOT good sound choices.

At this point sweetie, it IS about YOU, not him now. and you DO have other fish to fry sweetie, you need to get YOUR life together. I KNOW YOU CAN DO IT. What is all this “drama” doing for you? NADA!!!!\

Get to feeling better and stay around here!!! I’ve lmissed you! (((hugs))) and my prayers!

Stargazer

Persephone,
First of all, I don’t know how I missed the snake conversation. I love snakes, so I give you kudos for taking them home and not killing them. (Sociopaths don’t deserve the same treatment, though, IMO).

The biggest thing my sociopath used to do is say he was going to call and not call. He also was no show for two dates. After enough of this, I called it quits. I did not wait for worse behavior that inevitably would have followed. He always had an excuse for why he didn’t call and downplayed it as though it weren’t a big deal. This became the norm for the short time I dated him, and I came to “make excuses” for his behaviors, even though it hurt me.

I just want to validate that it DOES hurt when someone is supposed to call or stop by and doesn’t. It is a manipulative ploy to put it back on you, like you’re the one that is supposed to be calling. The “no show, no explanation” is a typical sociopathic behavior. I’d never seen it before him and I didn’t like it. I got out quickly after that crap started, but not quickly enough. It took me a year to get over a 2-month relationship. So I urge you to get out now, while you can, because it just takes so long to recover from these creeps.

persephone7

Thanks so much Oxy for virtual hugs and remembering me. And Stargazer, it is unfortunately what I need right now, and that is to be validated – especially about the calls and being stood up. He had gotten better about it and I have thought we were on a new page but it always slips back – wish I had had your self-esteem way back to avoid it after two dates! And I wasn’t truthful when I said ‘it doesn’t bother me’ when he didn’t call – you file the hurt away subconsciously and it tears you down just that little bit more. Though what may be healthy, and what he doesn’t realize is that with reading books,
looking here and just with the passage of time, I’ve seen both his and my patterns. It doesn’t bother me AS MUCH and perhaps I’m finally ready to disengage, because I don’t know if I DO love him
anymore and I have found I’m more and more accepting of myself – I do know I try to be kind to whoever I meet and it is usually reflected right back to me. Most of the people here at this site say
they have good friends, alot of them have raised wonderful kids despite hardships and I can put myself in that category. I don’t believe what this person says to me anymore…I WANT to, but it’s been
a slow drip-drip-drip eroding whatever trust and love I have for him as an individual. He may be legitimately struggling, so am I financially and with job and family decisions to make, but he seems
to give me love and sanctuary (that’s why I think I haven’t wanted to move on and add to what’s going on around me) and then just as quickly, he takes it away. So there’s the emotional pain anyway,
why not just end it like scratching off a to-do list, in this case – things to move on from…

And no, I didn’t mean I literally picked up snakes from my path – it just struck me as similar to what I’ve done with a certain kind of man – like the snakes who just do what they do, they bite you – no apologies! So kudos not in order – real snakes get my respect and even admiration for their beauty but that’s about it! They say when you see a healthy one it is a sign of Kundalini, the life force and
I’ll take it at that – and these encounters with dangerous, seemingly more ‘alive’ men is just a wake-up call to take my own aliveness and creativity and do something productive and soul-satisfying with
it, not give my own energy away.

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