By | July 7, 2016 127 Comments

After Unwittingly Falling In Love With A Sociopath: Feeling “Off,” Subtle Anxiety, And A Sense of Unease

Husband Liar Sociopath

By O.N. Ward

Every week, a chapter of my book, “Husband, Liar, Sociopath: How He Lied, Why I Fell For It & The Painful Lessons Learned” (available via, just click on the title or book cover) will be published here on Lovefraud. To read prior chapters, please see the links at the bottom of the post.

Chapter 13: Knowing, Without Knowing We Know

A chronic, subtle sense of unease, anxiety, and feeling that something is “off” are classic symptoms of being in a relationship with a sociopath. These feelings became my constant companions.

The Iowa Gambling Task is a classic study designed by neuroscientists at the University of Iowa and discussed at length in a book by Antonio Damasio, one of the researchers. It demonstrates how we can sense that something is wrong and feel anxious without understanding what is making us feel that way.

In their study, subjects were given four decks of cards, play money, and instructions to draw cards from any of the four decks until they were told to stop. Each card in the deck triggered a payout or a loss of varying amounts. The decks were rigged so that two of the decks had positive expected payouts while the other two were downright punitive and would result in large losses for the participant. Players’ anxiety and tension were measured via the electrical conductance of their skin, the same technique used in many lie-detector tests.

At first, a player’s choice of decks appeared random. But soon, players experienced tension and anxiety while reaching for the decks with negative expected payouts. Players also started avoiding these decks long before they had a logical explanation for their choices. One of the things this experiment shows is that our anxiety and tension can signal that something is legitimately wrong long before we realize it consciously or can offer some sort of explanation.

What do the results of this card experiment have to do with living with a sociopath? A relationship with a sociopath is just like thinking you are drawing cards from a fair deck when, in fact, you are drawing cards from a deck that is stacked against you. You will feel anxious and on edge. Although participants in psychology experiments are debriefed so they understand what has actually transpired, in real life there is no guarantee that you will ever understand the root cause of your negative feelings. Without understanding the root cause, you may never remove yourself from the person or situation triggering the feelings, hence feeling anxious and on edge become chronic.

Let me elaborate on this finding by conducting a simple thought experiment. Imagine the tension in the study’s participants if they had been required to keep choosing from the punitive deck, not all the time but as frequently as they did from the nonpunitive decks. Their anxiety and tension would have persisted and likely escalated. Imagine now that, due to heightened tension and anxiety, a player asks to avoid these decks. When the experimenter asks why, the player explains that certain decks seem associated with big losses.

Imagine if the experimenter appears to listen with great empathy and compassion (as a sociopath would) but then explains that the decks have been balanced carefully. If the player perceives differences, it is just a matter of being unlucky early on in the study or that she is one of those people who is overly sensitive to negative feedback. In fact, the experimenter was just like her; he had a similar impression when he went through the experiment himself, but almost no other player has made that comment. Further, it is important to the study for her to continue, and the lead experimenter will not pay her for doing the study unless she completes it—although the assistant experimenter would be happy to help her out if he could.

In light of the information that there is no valid reason to be upset, and with her ego on the line to prove she is not “overly sensitive,” the player persists. Several outcomes, none of them good, are now likely. Her anxiety and tension will persist and build as she is required to take actions she senses, accurately, are contrary to her interests. As her anxiety mounts, maybe she will stop the experiment again and reiterate that she is sure two of the decks are minefields and ask permission to avoid them. To reassure her that the decks are, in fact, balanced, the assistant will offer (although he suggests he might get in trouble for it) to take the decks aside and check them. Maybe they got scrambled. She waits. He returns, assuring her that the decks are even. Again, maybe it is just randomness that made some decks appear more or less favorable than others.

Alternatively, maybe, as the assistant suggested earlier, she is just overly sensitive to negative feedback. In fact, another experimenter is looking for people who consider themselves exceptionally sensitive and tend to “over react.” Maybe she would like to sign up for this study as well. Not wanting to appear unusually weak or overly sensitive, she persists with the experiment in spite of mounting anxiety every time her hand reaches for the two punitive decks.

In this scenario, her body is in constant “fight or flight” mode, because she is in a negative situation. But since someone she trusts, someone who seems to show considerable empathy for her, is telling her she is misreading the situation, she does not leave. By the experimenter discounting the player’s perceptions and reasoning, not only does she experience ongoing anxiety, she has less confidence in her ability to perceive and assess the friendliness or hostility of her environment. Her self-confidence and self-esteem take a hit. Her hard-wired fight or flight mechanism, crafted over millions of years of evolution to signal danger, is dampened.

If this is truly just an experiment that takes a half-hour of her day, no long-term damage is likely. But living with a sociopath is like being stuck in a rigged experiment that never ends. Being in fight or flight mode is great if you are trying to outrun a nasty dog. Living in fight or flight mode constantly is profoundly unhealthy—both physically and emotionally. In addition, having someone you trust continually contradict your perceptions and undermine your decisions is intellectually and emotionally corrosive.

Other potential outcomes to this thought experiment exist. Choosing not to experience constant anxiety and having all of her efforts to understand what is going on fail, our player might continue to go through the motions but give up emotionally as she realizes she can do nothing to control a situation she perceives as negative. This possibility sounds a lot like “learned helplessness,” a term introduced by psychologists Steven F. Maier and Martin Seligman. Learned helplessness is linked strongly with depression. To avoid expending energy in an unwinnable situation, it might be best to just resign oneself to one’s unpleasant fate—to give up, to not care, to disconnect. The problem is that once a person learns that it is futile to try, this behavior is not easily unlearned. As a result, the person does not attempt to exert effort to advance his or her interests in future situations, even when the situation is different and new efforts are likely to yield positive results.

Being in an environment for an extended time in which the connection between effort and results is severed can change a person, leaving him or her chronically depressed. Is it any wonder that more than ninety percent of women involved in long-term relationships with sociopaths become depressed or anxious?

Start from the beginning:

Chapter 1

Go to previous chapter:

Chapter 12

Go to next chapter:

Chapter 14


Identifying names, places, events, characteristics, etc. that I discuss here and in my book have been altered to protect the identity of everyone involved.

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Yes, yes and yes. This is a great way to explain what happens when one is in a relationship with a sociopath. My personality completely changed while I was in this whirlwind of crazy relationship. I have been officially out of the relationship for a year now, and going on 4 months of no contact, but I am STILL anxious from being with him. When I was with him (during the devaluation and discard stages) I pushed my friends away, I pushed new people I met away, etc, all because HE MADE ME CRAZY. I felt anxious and scared ALL the time. I couldn’t see what was up and what was down and he made me feel like all of it was my fault. And the more anxious I was, the more paranoid I was (I already have C-PTSD from childhood abuse), so the more he was able to convince me that the problems in the relationship were entirely my fault. Even though we haven’t been together for a while now, I have basically sworn off dating because I do not feel safe around anyone. I don’t trust them at all – any form of flattery raises a HUGE red flag to me and I immediately cut it off. I’m in my head more often too so I’m a different person and stranger than I feel like I used to be. I am improving each and every day that I’ve been no contact, but he changed me forever. At least now I know what/who to avoid and I guarantee I will be able to spot a sociopath from here on out. Anyway, thanks for this post! Most people do not understand how this works and they blame the victim or think she is overreacting. Your example proves that that isn’t the case. Thanks again.




I totally agree with you 100% I have like 0 interest and 0 trust in men right now mostly because I have no idea how I allowed myself to get soooo sucked in? I guess I don’t trust my own instincts even though I knew 8 days after we were married he was not who I thought he was and I screwed up and even told him that. I did not know how far he had destroyed me…..blessings to you stay strong.


I know exactly what you mean! It is painful to realize how easily you were manipulated and duped into believing in the mask that he put forth. And it’s scary because we were so vulnerable in the relationship with our sociopath and for many reasons, we are now afraid to let our guard down. Also, we had to learn to deny our instincts in the relationship because of cognitive dissonance – we would feel something was off – and we most certainly could tell probably within the first few months (I re-read my journals from about 6 months into the relationship and I commented that there was something really off with him, but I couldn’t put my finger on it) – but then he would explain away the negative by putting his mask back on and pretending to be the guy I first met. This created a ton of confusion so of course any ability I used to have to instinctually sniff out danger, he fucked with it. At least this experience will help you identify emotional manipulators! Many people aren’t even aware that they exist, but since you have experienced this, hopefully this will pave the way for you to be in a healthy, two-sided, empathetic, genuine, communicative relationship!


I just hope I don’t cut off a good one before he has a chance if it seems to good to be true I am out of there!! sad to say ,but I know me!! stay strong!! blessings to you!


Awww I totally know what you mean! As soon as I’m shown any sort of flattery I get uncomfortable and then run for the hills. Especially because, like yourself, think “oh, this seems too good to be true, it probably is, I’m out!” A friend told me in my relationship with the sociopath that it seemed too good to be true based on her experience with someone I might also call a sociopath in hindsight and at the time, I ignored her. I thought no way! “You don’t understand our relationship. He is so sweet to me! He is treating me better than I’ve ever experienced!” Anyway – that thought pops up into my head after I meet someone that is showing me a lot of attention or is being too nice, attentive, flattering.. Well, on the bright side, I’ve too much anxiety at this point to really date so this is happening less and less :/


And I wish you the best as well! I am not sure time heals all wounds, but the more I am away from him the stronger and better I feel. I hope that happens for you too! Stay strong! 🙂


this is only the second day and I am trying to find the few things that make me think maybe he’s not a psycopath? maybe I am reading to much into this? I know for a fact though this man has made me have emotions I never had and a problem with self control (all from reacting to him) when he was being sweet and nice none of this exist though! I wrote a post that said going NC having trouble help!! he sent me an email with crying emoji’s (that is the most emotion I have got in one year) which from what I have read they do that to lower your expectations so they have to put less in the relationship. the thing that baffles me is he called everynight when he got off work, he wanted me with him. He would not go out with me anymore so when I went out to sing was the only time he could have seen someone else. he made me feel replaceable purposely though and looked at me and said you would just move on too! Ahh NO!! I even came home early and surprised him because he made me feel so insecure about it. I really think he just did not want me going out. if everything else fits though so what if he chooses to keep it all for one victim. It was still walking on egg shells, rules changing, being minimized, accused,attacked IT’S ALL THERE so why does it bother me so bad that he did not have others and that does not fit? All I know is I felt trapped in my feelings that were so over whelming and confusing that I could not sleep at night trying to figure out what everthing means. cuz NOTHING ever made sense he was a walking contradiction! oh well Good luck to you too!! Good Luck to us all!!



Your thoughts and second guessing are normal for 2 days into NC. All of us who left spath ‘relationships’ experienced intense confusion, trying hard to figure it out, replaying things that he did in our brain, and wondering if he really is disordered or we just imagined it. It’s part of the process of grieving the loss, and working through the pain of betrayal. It comes and goes, it’s very painful, and it lasts awhile. You will feel better and you will get clarity. You can be well pleased with yourself for making the difficult decision to leave and for being strong through 2 days of NC.

As far as I know, my ex spath did not have other women. He did a lot of porn, child porn, gay men’s porn, cross-dressed, and who knows what else. He’s not heterosexual. He married me for impression management, status, and because he thought it would help him get into the ministry at the church we attended.


Thank you I am freaking out though I know there is some good in him! I am thinking with him it’s more a control issue alone!! I don’t know either way he won’t get help he won’t change and I can’t live my life on egg shells and his terms!!


You are thinking very clearly to recognize that the bottom line is that he isn’t good for you, he doesn’t increase your well-being; and he doesn’t appreciate all the good things you are and all you have to offer enough to change. You are doing the best thing for yourself, even though it’s really really difficult now.


Thanx I just wrote him an email……. Then I deleted it. I am torn apart it sucks. I left once before stayed gone 2 months (in which he started talking to someone after one week) I cried everyday….it seemed to be getting worse not better if that happens this time I will just go back for good. Hell if it hurts worse being gone then what’s the use?😔


You did the right thing to delete the email and not send it. You can always send it, but once you send it you can’t take it back.

I wrote many emails and never sent them. It was like a journal for me for awhile.

You can always go back to him, but if you do go back you’ll give up these 2 days of NC that you’ve made it through.

The best thing you can do for yourself is stay away from someone who hurts you.

You deserve to be treated well. You wouldn’t treat anyone like he treats you, and so it makes sense not to allow anyone to treat you badly. You are valuable.

Most of us on this forum experienced the unbelievable pain you’re going through now. It will be worth it to you; you will feel better than you ever did with him. Your time and energy can be given to good people who appreciate you.

Prayers for you to create a good life for yourself and to get through this.


Thank you AnettePK
I want to share something with you all! I heard something today (I don’t know what your believes are) but regardless to that what I heard was pure truth😊 I was sitting there and was starting to have bad feelings and I heard “Those are not your feelings! You were conditioned to feel and react this way by someone else. There for they are not valid to you and are fake in nature. You do not have to feel them…they are not of you.” Call it an innervoice I know who guides me though. I have said that to myself anytime I feel anything since then and it completely vanishes! I just wanted to share because it so greatly helped me! It is so very true in my case I don’t know about the rest of you ,but I never felt Jealousy, or anything uncontrollable and overwhelming until he started literally telling me I felt that way. He convinced me and I actually started feeling it! (That’s just one example) also the feeling I needed him so bad! That was planted…no one needs to be shut down, disrespected, made to beg (which is not in my nature at all by the way) so none of these horrible feelings belong to me they were put there by a clever counter fitter if you will! Hope that helps someone!!
Night all have a blessed eavening!!


Hi Ladybugg, Huge Hugs to you!!

You should be so proud of yourself for not only leaving this abusive man but also searching net for answers to what you endured and going NO CONTACT with him!!! These are HUGE HUGE HUGE step so Powerful!! You are strong Ladybugg!!!

You state:

“……It was still walking on egg shells, rules changing, being minimized, accused,attacked IT’S ALL THERE …….All I know is I felt trapped in my feelings that were so over whelming and confusing that I could not sleep at night trying to figure out what everthing means..”

This is exactly how you feel when you are with a mentally disorders person!!

Right now it does NOT matter if you can determine if he is a sociopaths or not.

What matters is he is a disordered individual!! (say that again to yourself!!)

With time you will see that he fits several personality disorders as most dont just have one disorder. For example ALL sociopaths are narcissist but not all narcissist are sociopaths. But they may in addition have borderline personality issue etc etc.

What you need to know right now is:

He is NOT normal!!!

He is NOT a good person!!!

He was ABUSING you!!

How do I know he was abusing you?

Because you stated:


2) I felt TRAPPED

3) my feelings were OVER WHELMING

4) my feelings were CONFUSING

5) could not sleep

6) trying to figure what everything means

7) he was rule changing

Ladybug these are not normal relationship feelings!!

These are feelings of a victim like yourself who endured mental and emotional abuse.

These are feelings of a vicim who has been dealing with a disordered person.


It is soooo over whelming when you are in a relationship with a mentally disordered person. It is also extremely overwhelming when you leave because the mentally disordered (your ex) manipulated you exactly like a cult leader manipulates a cult follower.

So when you leave you are trying to figure out which way is up and which way is down.

Living with a mentally disordered person is hell….our bodies react to this daily stress by releasing high levels of cortisol and adrenaline and when you break up with someone our bodies naturally release more cortisol and adrenaline. But when you leave a mentally disordered person our bodies release even higher levels of cortisol stress hormone and adrenaline hormone. This is what you are feeling right now physically!!

What does this mean physically to our bodies and mind?

You end up with:

sleep issues
not being able to handle stress
anxiety and depression
mood swings
memory loss
hard to see things clearly


Mia Lundin you tube videos (this one will explain why you cant sleep)


Dr Lam. com and Adrenal fatigue. org

Look at the sites symptoms list. The list is long. Most victims that leave a abusive relationship will end up with adrenal fatigue. Removing yourself from your abuser will help tremendously this is why the no contact rule is also vitally important as it gives your body a rest from the daily stress….,so will rest and relaxation, a good clean diet, vitamins & minerals and possible hormonal balancing (progesterone). Look into getting tested for “cortisol levels, vitamin & mineral deficiency, hormonal imbalance etc.

These things once corrected will not only help you to sleep but will also help you to think more clearly with regards to your ex being a abuser.

One of the best things I did when I left was let my friend know my symptoms I has having and she directed me to a Endocrinologist Doctor who tested me for all of the things abuse. My doctor gave me Dr Wilsons vitamins 4 times a day and progesterone creme and with in hours literally my anxiety was half…and within a month I started to feel like my old self long before my ex h came into my life.

I would also recommend that you call your counties National Domestic Violence hotline USA 800-799-SAFE to talk with a free counselors and also to ask them for your local abuse center numbers then call your local abuse center and set up free counseling sessions and woman group meetings. This is another step I took and it was extremely important for me because I truly learned that YES i was in a abusive marriage and also leaving was my only option to have a peaceful and calm life again.

Up at the top under the “CONTACT” tab you will find Donna Anderson’s contact info. For a small fee you can talk with her directly. This is another step that will help you if you so choose to do so. Donna Anderson having leave the nightmare is not an expert on the subject and would be able to guide you as well in dealign with your feelings.

Lovefruad has just started a new online program also that you can educate yourself fully about your ex.

My best additional advise is to READ, READ, READ everything up at the top of this site and books that you can get under the “book store tab” or at your local library on the subject of sociopath and also domestic abuse.

Reading your post I have little doubt that your ex is not a sociopath just by how you are emotionally feeling. It’s the same way I felt when I left my ex. I even went to counseling after leaving my ex and sat on the couch the first day with her and said “I just left my husband and I dont know if our marriage failed because of me or him or both. I am so confused”. Thankfully that counselor was extremely knowledgable with abuse and knew to ask me specific question which lead to me telling her what happened in my marriage and her telling me by the end of that first session that I was married to a sociopath.

That Ladybugg was all I needed to hear. I did not fully understand what that meant but I had my answer that I needed to forever close the door on my husband (now ex thank goodness!!).

For you I would highly recommend that you write down everything he did that was emotional, mental, financial and physical abusive. You will be shocked at what you have forgotten and what you see on paper now.

YOU DID THE RIGHT THING GOING NO CONTACT WITH HIM!! Please know this and do everything in your power to keep this in tact. IF you have to come here and just vent out what you would say to him if you talked to him on the phone BEFORE you call him. This will help to get your feelings out and most likely you will see that you dont need to call him. OR you can call the Domestic Abuse Hotline to talk with free counselor.

FOLLOW YOUR GUT IT IS NEVER WRONG!! Google “Oprah Gavin Debecker you tube” to watch their video on why it is so important to listen to your gut.

Your gut is telling you everything that you need to know about your ex = he is not a good person. This is why you search the internet for answers this is why you found Lovefruad!!!



Wishing you all the best.

Take care 🙂


oops spelling error in my post above 🙁

above posted reads: “This is another step that will help you if you so choose to do so. Donna Anderson having leave the nightmare is not an expert on the subject and would be able to guide you as well in dealign with your feelings.”

Should read: Donna Anderson having lived the nightmare is an expert on the subject and would be able to guide you as well in dealing with your feelings.


I knew what you meant thank you! I did write him just a small email. I thought I should say something, but I blamed myself. The reason I thought I should say something is I said nothing and up and blocked him and he had no clue why. I have not ever even told him he is abusive. I have always acted like I didn’t notice and told him I know he doesn’t mean to make me feel like this or that…I talked to his ex wife and she told me I was doing the right thing. I wake up panicking though and worry he’s already talking to someone else. (He made it a point to show me how quickly he gets on websites when I leave) even if I leave out of pain and tell him so and tell him how to fix it. He refuses if we get back together usually cuz I am about to pull my hair out over being away I have to make the effort! I am worth more! I am a singer and a songwriter I am releasing my first album this month I am beautiful and smart and talented and this man wants me to think everything I think feel or believe is wrong. He tells me I am too skinny and I am not attractive any more and he told his ex wife she was too fat and was not attractive anymore. He has never once (since the love bombing) even said my songs were good and he quit going out with me I have to go alone or take my mom he refuses to go! He has not said one nice thing to me in over a year.
One day I text him and said I feel were against each other I feel we don’t say enough positive things to each other so I want to do a littler excersice I think may help! I know it would help me. I want us to each say 10 nice things about each other. So I said 10 things about him (things I say all the time by the way) none of which have to do with how he treats me. Nothing nice to say there! This is what I get in return…”I’m not doing this I’m not playing your games” and I said “I think your not doing it because you can’t. you act like you hate me” he says “well now you’ll never know just for that”
I was not trying to play games I AM EMOTIONALLY STARVING he purposely over fed me emotionally at first then he slowly took every bit of it away.
He will get me to the point where I’m begging him to say something anything and all he’ll say is “your still here aren’t you? Quit ignoring the obvious!”
Romance literally turned into “take off your pants” such a pig. I felt he did not deserve my body and soul anymore so bad that I felt guilty anytime I had sex. (Guilty cuz we’re no longer married yes but it was more then that) all his porn makes me sick and the fact that he was with someone last time I left does too! This man has got me so obsessed with him that I am miserable when we’re apart and want to die thinking about him moving on (because he constantly made it plain that was so easy for him to do) I don’t have the slightest clue why I even care. I just want out of this feeling I want out of all of it I wish I’d never met him.
Hell I thought I was depressed before I met him….Because I thought being loved was all that mattered and I never had that. He was the first person I ever really let in and completely trusted and then he turned on me! He was the one hurting me and the only one that could fix it (and revused to) He mind ***ked me and then said I need professional help!! When I left the first time I called him and said “what did you do to me?” And begged him to talk to me. He emailed me saying I need professional help, but I felt still do feel like I am I guess addicted to him and I have emotions I never had before. I hate it!
Thank you for all the information I am already on a diet to control my hormones (because I thought they were the problem) so I avoid sugar,rice, white flour (all whites) and red meat and dairy after the ovulation stage. I am also on PMS comfort for hormone regulation. I take Valium once a day. Honestly I want something to just numb me. I can’t do that though. I am thinking strongly about just leaving. Don’t know where I would go and I would miss my dog and parents ,but I feel like I’m gonna go out of my mind. Thanks for being there.


OMG Jan7 thank God for you I just looked up Dr. lam I have been Dr for Neck and Back pain, PMS, hitting dizzy when I stand, and was just told I have fibermialga have been taking pills for the insomnia and during tense times with my ex was starting to tremble!! THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU!! Do you realize that is 3 doctors I don’t need and 4 pharmaceutical drugs that I won’t need! Life changing help thanks!!


Everything each person is saying is super on point. We have all been through that excruciating pain you are experiencing right now and yes it might feel better to go back to him because if you are in this much pain now, you think you might as well be in pain with him. Well first of all, the pain will never ever ever end with him. He will never truly care about you: your well being, your music, your family, anything. He just does not care. And second of all the pain that you are feeling now without him, it will end. It will pass. Doesn’t seem like it now, but i but will.

When my ex spath and I broke up; we didn’t talk for 3 months and I started feeling better and better after each day because I was finally not under his control or mind games anymore. However, during this 3 months I went back and forth thinking to myself that he probably is/isn’t a psychopath – and that all the relationship problems were actually my fault, etc. so after 3 months of no contact I reached out to him again. We ended up meeting up and sort of dating again for a few months, in which he continued to play his games and be nasty and it was even worse this time around. For starters he wasn’t even close to the person I fell in love with (because he was wearing a mask the whole time) and he was twofaced, cruel and just annoying to be around. He acted super entitled to my body (well, I did let him have sex with me whenever he wanted, particularly because I was still craving his touch). He kept acting like we were going to get back together, but when I would bring that idea up, he would flip out on me and play his usual mind games. He acted like our relationship didn’t matter to him and he had just went about his life like I hadn’t even existed. Anyway, after that brief stint with him, I felt even worse after that than I did after the first no contact. Because again he messed with my head.

Remember – you will always always always always be miserable with him; he will never care, never work towards changing, and frankly, he probably gets off on your suffering and he definitely loves the power he has over you. You deserve better!

This is where you need to do some work on yourself. You need to love yourself. The first and foremost relationship we ever have is with ourselves. I didn’t love myself, which was a huge reason why I wanted someone else to love me and prove that I deserved it!

Anyway. This post also helped me (especially the desperate love part)



I recall hearing someone (maybe on this site?) telling that she had Fibromyalgia that went away when she got away from her spath abuser.

Everything you’re feeling and thinking is normal. Your emotions and behavior are normal responses to being treated abnormally, to being abused and gaslighted. It sounds like you are thinking very clearly.

Can you go away somewhere for a while, and take your dog? Maybe stay with friends or family in another state? It may be helpful to be in different surroundings. You may be safer somewhere he doesn’t know where you are. If he senses that you really mean business about leaving this time, he could be dangerous to you. The time women get hurt and yes, killed, more often by their abusers is when they leave him.

From what you describe, he sounds like a classic spath, really evil, and very harmful. The nasty insulting things he says to you have nothing to do with you. As you note, he said pretty much the same insults to his first ex wife. What he says and does is about who he is and what he is.

It is normal for you to feel pain at the thought of his moving on to another target. The way you feel is very appropriate and right, and it works well in a monogamous committed relationship with a man of good character who loves you and cares about your well being. Nothing normal and good works in interactions with a spath.
Your ex will move on to another victim. That’s what he does and who he is. He will treat the new prey exactly the same as he treated you and his first ex wife. He doesn’t want to change and he doesn’t care who he’s using. He will always be the same because he likes being who he is. It is next to impossible for us normal people to understand that, but it is the truth about spaths.

You sound like a strong and clear headed person. If you can, you might try spending some time every day not thinking about him and doing something positive that’s about you.

Are you performing anywhere? Are you going to have a CD release party?

Keep on doing the good job you are doing to take good care of yourself.


Thank you ihatehim I will read the post thank you to everybody that is helping me it is appreciated more then you know!! Thank you so glad I found this place!!

Hope Springs

Bingo…may I also add…the telltale sign that you are CORRECT about him being a P/SP is the fact that his ex had the same problems with him.

You only need look at the path of destruction that these types leave in their wake, namely destroyed and broken relationships.

Get out now and do not go back. You will thank yourself in as little as one month from now. Guaranteed.


Aww we are glad to help! We have all been there. Stay strong! You can do it 🙂


Thank you so much Bev and AnnetePK! No Annete I am not having a Record realese party I will be on Apple, iTunes, Spotify, and many other places for digital download! I will be on Amazon for hard copy and then next month sometime I will be selling hard copies on Reverbnation, and N1M look me up on either of those my stage name is Karisa Kay!!
I am trying so hard to just get myself together and do for me I am feeling much better just knowing I am not alone in these confusing feelings Thx all!!

Hope Springs

Always 🙂

We just want someone who is also going through this to get where they need to be faster than perhaps we did?



Thank you ihatehim I’m trying I did talk to Donna today she was a great help too!!


This article explains how spaths influence their normal victims to act out in ways that we ordinarily would not in a normal relationship with a good man.


Wow so today is actually our wedding anniversary and I just thought it will depress me but now it’s more like it is what it is. It meant nothing so It means nothing now!
My best friend got married the same day so I wrote her and told her happy anniversary I don’t think I would have even thought of it if it were not for that. Did not even cross my mind and I new what day it was. I guess I am gonna be ok and it is not gonna define me like I thought.
Now I just have a temptation to write him and say happy anniversary to the end of your acting career!! Boy you missed your calling!! Lol ,but I will refrain. That would not be very mature or very nice. He just did what he does and has no clue anyway. Probably already trying to draw some other unsuspecting victim in now. Which would mean he is back in show bizz till he’s hooked her good I guess.
Speaking of which my song “make me a diamond Lord is #1 on the N1M charts in Christian again this week so that’s cool!
Fixing to cut a new one I just wrote so I am excited about that!! Still kinda having a hard time feeling any joy I guess I am kinda numb and I tried to hang out with a guy friend of mine yesterday he said I act nervous like I am scared of him. I really don’t think I will fully be able to trust a guy ever again. I need to work on that!!
Have a blessed day ya’ll and thanks for all your advise and all your help and support!!😘


Good to hear you’re feeling ok today. I hope that continues. You sound like you’re going to be ok. I think it helps to have art or music in one’s life.

Good for you for resisting contacting him. Consider writing what you’d like to say to him, but not sending it. I did that a lot; it helped me.

Thanks for sharing about your song. Great lyrics – and the music is very upbeat, cheerful and positive.

Katy Perry was married to a major abusive psychopath. Three of her songs express what she was going through. I related so very much to them. I don’t usually listen to pop music, but my teenage son showed me Hot and Cold, knowing it was describing my now ex psychopath.

These are links to her videos about her spath experience.

The lyrics to all three of these songs are so descriptive to me of what the experience of a relationship with a spath is like.

Hope Springs

I just have to add something here. I have seen over and over about writing what you would like to say to the P/SP and not sending it…

Well, I DID end up sending it through email, mistakenly… and guess what? The P/SP wrote me a nasty reply, and then promptly BLOCKED ME….RESULT!!

My writings were so key and on point and so devoid of any emotion. Harsh, is a good word.

I have heard NOTHING from him since and I am so happy…and feel so free!! He knows that I know that he is disordered and that I will never ‘buy’ his bullshit again. Case closed and solved. I am no longer useful AT ALL.

Cheers, and so glad to hear that you KNOW what you have to do. Keep doing it. You will soon feel even better!!


Thanks Bev wow that’s one way to get rid of him!! Thanks AnnettePK I am gonna check out those songs I wrote one called “scars on the heart” Actually another one that was because of him is on the album it is “Don’t fall in Love” my mom’s new favorite. Yes the arts are a perfect way to find yourself or sort through your emotions if you’d rather. The truth is though you don’t really have your self any more (on the service) you have to work on who you really are all over again.
His ex said she was not herself for about 3 years (she was with him for 12 years though) and I just resently learned how bad the abuse toward his kids was, and she was like “you don’t know what he did to the kids?” And I said no how would I? (Although I believe it how mean he is to animals) well I don’t think it will take me 3 years to sort it out. Have a blessed night!


That should have said surface not service lol

Hope Springs

Actually, the reply that I received from the P/SP after mistakenly sending him my ‘thoughts’about him was not really ‘nasty’at all, except for the underlying tone. It was more of a pseudo concern for my ‘unhealthy mind’ reply. Lol. He also used many of the P/SP buzz words that they lack, like how he had’empathy’for my “unhealthy mind’ and that he felt ‘truly sorry’ for me. Of course, he exhibits and has NONE of those traits in reality.

And, of course, he always has to have the last word, which is likely why he blocked my email right after sending it to me.

He wrote that MY mind was unhealthy. Pot…kettle…


ya my spath does that to me says I am the one who needs help! He’s right I need help getting away from him!

Hope Springs

Yep, they do seem to turn it back onto us. Funny that.

We need help for noticing that there is something wrong with them. For noticing that they are ‘off’.


They really do turn it around on you. Once my ex and I broke up (after he played the silent treatment on me for weeks, while “we” were trying to figure things out) we met up again a few months later (as I mentioned), and he basically told me that we broke up because of me; that I was to blame for our break up. He also used to say that he took responsibility for his behavior but yet when i would try to talk to him about all the shit that he did, he didn’t want to hear it. And the smear campaign really sucks because none of your mutual friends understand why you are acting hysterically and then he chalks it up to: “see I told you she was crazy” ugh anyway.

Has any one else struggled with friendships after this?

1) I became crazy during this relationship and pushed people away
2) I also push people away because I come off as obsessive about him (because I’m stilllll working through what happened and they don’t understand why)
3) I want to (and do) tell people I believe he is a sociopath but it always screws me over. People don’t believe me or it’s hard to explain because his abuse was so insidious and it sounds like an acceptable thing to do/ people explain away his behavior (like I used to do at the beginning). Like they will say I mention that he would play the silent treatment on me, that it was cruel and they say: oh he must have needed space.

Anyway all my friends think I’m crazy basically and I feel isolated and now I’m even questioning: “wow, is it me? Maybe it is me? Maybe he isn’t a sociopath and is a good person but lost interest, etc”

But I’m convinced he is a sociopath because everything that happened- I mean right?! Ugh I hate this self doubt !

Hope Springs

OMG OMG OMG…yes! Yes to everything that you are saying!!

My son (the P/SP in my life) always said over and over when he was going through his breakup with his wife… own all the wrong things that I do, I take some of the blame…but SHE won’t admit to anything’…Well, that was all such BULLSHIT. He would not engage in talking about anything that he did done wrong and did not want to hear it. Instead, the very things that he did do wrong and were actually the cause of the demise of his marriage, he turned 360 degrees and blamed his ex for doing!! It was ludicrous to say the least.

And yes, revealing to others that you think that he is a SP (or whatever disorder) seems to only serve to turn others against you. Again, ludicrous. There is much more to it than that as to why people tend to not believe, or not want to believe, and prefer to just dismiss your realization. I will put a link on here tomorrow, because I am off to bed now, about APATHS, and how they actually enable P/SPs to keep on with their dirty work. It is very enlightening and may help you to understand what is happening now that you know who your ex is.


Ihatehim you are not crazy I have seen enough of your story to know you went through close to the same as me very covert under the radar activity probably mixed with so much generosity that even you are going was he really bad? Look back at what was said to me by Jan7 The factors of feeling confused, overwhelmed with emotions, staying awake trying to figure it out, walking on egg shells. That is all abuse she’s right! Mine is soooo good that just tonight (yes I fell off the wagon) he was trying to convince me that I degrade him and act like he’s the Devil All I ever say that’s bad is about how he makes me feel! For crying out loud he does not even know I suspect abuse. I have never even told him!! I am always trying to be as nice as I can and the conversations go nowhere!! Tonight I was telling him it all had me soooo sick my head hurt so bad and I just needed it to be resolved in someway (knowing that’s not even possible) he said “how can we resolve it you have not agreed with a word I said you never once have said your right”
I said there has never been anything to say your right to. We have not had a conversation anytime I’d ask you something you wouldn’t answer. He called me three differant times hung up on me everytime and then when I would stop trying to get him to talk to me he’d call back and start it all over again Ryle me up then hang up and get mad if I text. He uses every single thing against me and acts like he does nothing. It ended up with him saying it was gonna take a long time to fix this I have to look at what I do! Look at myself! What I do? What I do is try to kiss his ass!! I asked him several times what he wanted me to do he said “I can’t tell you” then he said there is nothing I can do then he wants his space for me to figure out what I do. Right after he tells me when he’s in a relationship that’s it. when he’s not he does what he wants to do so how can I trust he won’t be out doing what he wants to do if he considers us not in a relationship? It is all just twisted crap!!!
If any of that sounds familiar you are not wrong! Like they say they all act remarkably the same!



I’ve experienced just about everything you describe. I now try to share details of my spath experience with people who can understand, like on this site. With others, I just say he is a liar, cross dresser, addicted to child porn (or whatever I choose from his horrible traits). Even people who don’t understand sociopathy understand why one would leave a liar and a cheater, etc.

In my experience the best way to relate to people with respect to the spath experience, is not to stoop to his level, to always take the high road, and let one’s good character and elegant and gracious behavior speak for itself. Easier said than done, of course.

Hope Springs

Here is that link that I said I would pass along today.

It explains why P/SPs can keep on keeping on with their crap. There are the P/SPs (the disordered), there are empaths…and apparently, there are also APATHS. People who seemingly do not want to go against the grain or upset the apple cart, but rather, turn a blind eye and seem to prefer for things to stay the same…they actually help the P/SPs to keep duping everyone, even them.


Hi Ladybugg, just read your latest post and I just wanted you to know that It’s common to talk with the sociopath after you leave….

You stated:

“He called me three differant times hung up on me everytime and then when I would stop trying to get him to talk to me he’d call back and start it all over again Ryle me up then hang up and get mad if I text.”

YES, he is LOVE BOMBING you back into his con game!!!! Do a search up at the top of Lovefruad for Lovebombing and also on the net google “sociopath love bombing” and “narcissist love bombing”

A sociopath will inundate you with phone calls, texts & emails all day long when you first date and when you break up with them. First they will be nice to you in the email or text after you leave them, when you dont answer they will push your buttons to get your attention saying something that is not true or twisted up so that you get upset and want to set the record straight on their lies.

But just know that it’s a trap…he is sucking you back into his manipulative con game with his words because he knows it has worked in the past.

What is he going to say? I’m sorry? I won’t hurt you again?….how many times have you heard these words from him?

Sociopaths know exactly how to use words to manipulate their vicim. they are masterful puppet masters. They have been manipulating people since they were little kids. And they LOVE the game to suck you back in.

DONT PLAY HIS GAME!! Kinda like dont feed the wild bears if you dont want them around in your yard.

When you talk with a sociopaths about issues it’s like getting on a Hamster wheel and spinning no where until you dont even remember what the original issue was!! This is what they want, they want you confused = so they can control you.

My ex was masterful with this manipulation….if he was on a business trip and did something crazy…and we would fight he would spin everything so I could not even remember what we were fighting about and I was just so mentally warn out that I got to a point I did not even care about what we were fighting about I just wanted him to stop his mind screwing. What he did was ALL intentional to confuse me, to redirect everything, to blame me instead so he could keep me in line.

It sounds like your ex is doing the same.

Remember how you felt when talking to him…you state:

“Tonight I was telling him it all had me soooo sick my head hurt so bad and I just needed it to be resolved in someway…”

Ladybug this is how your body is feeling….it’s like a gut reaction!! It is warning you that this person is dangerous to your body and mind.

All to often when dealing with a sociopath we neglect to truly look at how they are impacting us physically. Your body is sending out a gut ALARM symptom for you to pay attention!!

That HEAD ACHE you were feeling… is like a siren going off in your body to warn you of danger….who or what is the danger = your ex!!!

Tune into how your body feels when you talk to him….think back on all the times you were around him and start a list of symptoms you were feeling.

You state:

“He uses every single thing against me and acts like he does nothing. It ended up with him saying it was gonna take a long time to fix this I have to look at what I do! Look at myself! “

He is trying to get you under his control again…this is what abuser do they blame shift everything back to the vicim.


Do a search on Lovefruad for “sociopath projection” and “sociopath blame shift” (and then google these also on the net)

You state:

“What I do? What I do is try to kiss his ass!! I asked him several times what he wanted me to do he said “I can’t tell you” then he said there is nothing I can do then he wants his space for me to figure out what I do.”

He is doing what every abuser does he is putting you in “your place”…but his place is = ABUSE…mental mind control. This is exactly what all abusers do…he is blaming you and making you submissive with his words.

What do you do??

FOLLOW THE NO CONTACT AGAIN….but this time block him or change your phone number…change your email and only give it to trusted friends & family. BLOCK, BLOCK, BLOCK HIM.

The No contact rules works two ways:

1) It blocks him so he will not contact you

2) it gives you time to clear your mind from all his manipulation and mental and emotional abuse.

YOU are the only one in charge of the NO CONTACT RULE…by changing your phone number you are taking a stand that YOU DESERVE BETTER!!

It’s hard at first because he as created a addiction bond in you. Much like a alcohol or drug addiction. But with them you can break this addiction. This is why it is so important to keep reaching out for help with the National Domestic abuse Hotline, Your local abuse center and even an outside counselor who is extremely knowledgeable with domestic abuse…not all counselors are truly knowable.

If you look at your relationship this way it might help you….

Your ex is a Cult leader

You are his cult follower

Every time you talk with him he is controlling your mind literally!!

Sociopaths use brain washing & mind control literally to control their victims they also use reward and punishment techniques, gas lighting abuse (google), intimation, fear & phobias, and so many other mind games to control the vicim.

When you talk to him you will NEVER get closure!! NEVER!! You will end up on the hamster wheel spinning to NoWhereville.

Every time you talk with him he is sucking you back into his CULT.

Every vicim of a sociopath wants closer. What is your closure with a sociopath??

It’s educating yourself on the fact he is a very mental ill person and you can never have a normal healthy relationship with a sociopath. NEVER. And you close the door. THIS IS YOUR CLOSURE!!



Day 1 of the No Contact rule again 😉

Take care.


Aww thank you everyone for your support. Bev – you offer good advice regarding talking to my friends about my ex. I think you’re right in that it will be better to mention all the horrible things he did rather than me thinking he is a sociopath. Thanks so much for sending that link and telling me about the whole empath, apath, and sociopath trio – it makes sense! I know so many people who are enablers of sociopaths.

Ladybugg- thank you for your support. I really appreciate the validation. It helps me feel like I’m not crazy!

Also- Annette- thank you! I agree that people can easily understand liar, manipulator, but not sociopath so much- really they stop hearing what I’m saying (all the horrible things) and instead think I’m crazy for applying this disorder to him that people are afraid of.

Also Jan7 you mentioned that you would get in an argument with your spath and then he would spin you completely around you wouldn’t even remember what you were arguing about. I experienced that too! I have many times tried to describe certain scenarios where all of a sudden something happened and nothing was okay; and that we would fight. But I can’t even recall what or why we would fight. He always came up with something to be upset about, especially if he noticed that I was happy and content.


The BEST analogy for what it feels like to be with a covert sociopath. That feeling of unease. I became paranoid, FEELING like someone was always out to do harm to me, but not having actual proof.

THIS example is what my ex did to me, it wasn’t until he became OVERT that I finally “got it”. I discovered his OVERT abuse when I read what he wrote in his emails to others. However, during that time, he didn’t know that I read them and was still pretending to be so kind, concerned, patronizing, stonewalling, refusing to discuss, but not Directly abusive. After he knew that I knew, that’s when he was fullout openly smearing, lying, stealing, defrauding, setting me up for abuse by others, and that’s when I was nearly murdered.

Yep, this is the BEST description for the kind of mindf* that I endured… and why it seemed I was always over-reacting or paranoid… why it felt like I was going to be attacked out of the blue… b/c the nuances were real and I kept trusting that “honest face” of my deceitful twofaced ex.

GREAT informative eye opening article. THANK YOU!!!

Hope Springs

Woe…two really great posts. Thank you iHATEhim and NotWhatHeSaidofmE, for writing them.

You both put it into words so well. What it is like to deal with these ‘people’…and I use that word loosely, for often, they seem to cruel to be human…


And I like what she writes at the end… which has been so true for me. Eventually I gave up, I became extremely depressed. Why try? Nothing I did was going to matter, or make my life better. I had NOTHING to look forward to in life. I had learned I was worth less than nothing, and that anyone who came to know me would always dislike me, but I couldn’t figure out what it was that made me so unlikeable. I was told that others could see inside me, but I could not see the defects inside myself that made me so repulsive to others.

It has taken me years not to feel overwhelmed when people asked something of me, that awful feeling of being “not enough” and my expected rejection when they realized how worth less than nothing that I was. It makes work, a job, having a small business into a mountain to overcome, that I must overcome something that isn’t even there. People are not that cruel. Only my ex, his family, and his minions were, and I must remind myself that only a personality type treats people that way, it does not happen with the normal good decent people out there in society. But it remains a struggle, nevertheless. Anxiety!!

Hope Springs

I understand completely.

It creates a lasting depression that we constantly have to pull ourselves out of.


I did the same just retreated and cowtowd so I could keep him happy which was not possible and he never wanted peace I tried so hard to get it and he did not even want it. I always felt we were against each other on opposite sides I never dreamed they were good and evil!!


He should be in jail for attempted murder.

Direct abuse, like someone hauling off and slugging another person, generally can be recovered from the quickest and most completely. Covert abuse, hidden behind nice pretenses like you describe it, takes the longest to recover from and usually leaves lasting effects.

Several years out, I am realizing more and more how deeply I was harmed by the relatively brief time with my ex psychopath, and how lasting the damage is. I am having to work at recovery harder and longer than I expected.


mine was completely covert and lasted 4 years and it has messed me up!!


Although I was not nearly murdered (even though I suspected that he could have been secretly poisoning me), I can 100% concur with the covert abuse – patronizing, stonewalling, refusing to discuss, all while pretending to care and be kind, etc. He would play the silent treatment on me and I would confront him about it and he would stonewall me and refuse to discuss what it meant, how he felt, and he wouldn’t hear me out when I talked to him about how much that hurt me, etc. In fact, he faked having depression and was telling me that my incessant questions (which were common because all of a sudden he went from Mr. Hyde to Dr. Jekyll and I was trying to make sense of what was happening) were making it harder for him and that I must not care enough about him to understand what he was going through etc. So of course my empathetic self didn’t want to be accused of not caring so I shoved my needs away and took care of him.

It really is a mindf*** and it’s so sad to be betrayed by someone you care so deeply about.

I’m sorry to hear what you went through and I’m glad you are out of that relationship!


Jan7 when you said he was love bombing me by calling and then hanging up. That was actually incorrect he was torchering me! He knows hanging up on me and then ignoring me upsets me more then anything. And I crazy text trying to get him to talk to me. he saves them takes screen shots of them and saves them to show people how nuts I am!
He then called back every time because he’d yell at me for texting I’d stop and he’d call back upset me again and repeat the cycle!! He was trying to insure I got no sleep as far as “I’m sorry” ya I heard that the first year allot the second year a few times. (He cleverly conditioned that too) I would be arguing with him and he would say if you’d just drop it and give me time to cool down I would apologize so I did and maybe twice he came to me and apologized but I can honestly say the last two years he yells drop it I do and I could die waiting for an apology cuz it never came. The last two years was me groveling because he’s mad for no reason then him telling me I am pethetic for begging. So no when the love bombing stopped about a year in (which it was off and on devaluation/love bombing that 1st year then it was nothing but torchering me! Me begging him to stop and being told it’s all my fault. So yes his only reason for calling was to torchure me because I was trying yet again to “fix” things and he knew I was depressed and desperate to see him. Which with each passing day turns into yuck what did I ever see in him!!! Yay!!


Hi Ladybugg, I think most people think that Love bombing is always about showing positive affection it’s not. Love bombing is about power & control for a sociopath. It’s about training the target vicim right from the beginning to accept his future anger, cheating, manipulation. Love bombing moves into reward & punishment of the vicim as the relationship moves on.

Yes, in the beginning of the relationship when love bombing stage is all positive affection i.e. flowers, sweet notes, going to dinner, lots of phone calls, talking for hours, romantic dinners etc. And yes when you first leave them it will be about positive love bombing but if you chose to follow the no contact rule and ignore his calls & emails he will shift to negative love bombing to get you to talk to him so that he can suck you back into the relationship again. What is negative love bombing? It’s the long email rants blaming you or saying lies to you so that you engage with him.

l love bombing is all about power & control over the target vicim.

Your example of him calling & then hanging up is love bombing. Because he trained you in the beginning of your relationship with him that a phone call was a positive affection you continue to answer his phone calls or text even though you know that you will just fight with him and nothing will be resolved ever with him.

So now you will answer the phone because you have been trained. This is where you have to tap into your mindset and become fully aware of your own behavior with him and break all of his trained conditioning that he planted into your mind from day one. Like un-training a child or animal that has learned bad behavior.

His ignoring you is part of his power & control over you. It’s all manipulate on his behalf.

One thing you have to ask yourself is:

What is my part in this abusive relationship?

for me I had to come to the realization that I was participating in my ex h’s crazy behavior by engaging in arguments with him or answering the phone when he called after I left him or when he emailed me long ranting emails blaming me for his serial cheating and abuse.

When I set my emotions aside and looked at our relationship from an analytical prospective I realized that yes he was sucking me back into the drama & chaos with love bombing both negative & positive love bombing but I was also choosing to be sucked in because I wanted to correct his lies & I wanted for him to know he hurt me tremendously and he has conditioned me to answer his phone calls. But all the times I did talk with him it was just an emotional roller coaster ride with him.

Once I choose to jump of his roller coaster ride and see that each phone call & ranting angry text from his was love bombing I was able to break free from the mindset training & conditioning that he did to me from day one and impose the No contact rule for good.

If he called me today I would hang up on him immediately and change my phone number again. This is how you will respond in your future with him. But for know you have to break free from his mind control. And you will get there. You just have to re train your mindset back to your old thinking. IT’s not easy but you will get there I promise.

Glad you are posting, venting and asking questions here a LF it really is a big part of recovery.

Take care.


oops type o error:

sentense reads “l love bombing is all about power & control over the target vicim”

I deleted the sentence before this one but ended up not deleting the “I”…

should just read “love bombing is all about power & control over the target vicim”.


I understand what you’re saying about how you use the term love bombing. I always only used the term for the very intense positive words and actions that the spath overwhelms the victim with in the beginning of the relationship. It’s fake and it serves to get her to attach to the spath before she sees what he’s really like. I usually use other terms to refer to the manipulations that come later. I coined the term “torture sports” about my ex psychopath’s behavior before I even knew that his disorder existed.

Whatever words we use to describe their behavior, most spaths seem to follow the same evil harmful patterns. I concluded my ex spath is unoriginal and not at all creative. Aside from being extremely evil, they are actually very very boring.


Hi AnnettePK, I think “torture sport” is a good term too. I just wanted Ladybugg to see that any phone call or hang up is all about sucking her back into his evil dysfunctional abusive world. Since the term love bombing is used most frequently I just wanted to point out to her what he was doing.

Ladybugg is very astute & is doing everything to educate herself which is amazing at just being out one week. She is taking back her power!! So cool!!

Your words have been spot on to her. & are helping her so much. What a blessing!! What sociopaths never counted on is all the victim lifting each other up out of the sociopaths hell! POWERFUL how good people can do such goodness for each other!! 💚

You are correct they are boring…I use to think this during my marriage and the more I am away the more I agree with you.

Wishing you a good night. Take care. xx


I want to thank you SO MUCH for your post on July 16, 2016, and the link to a VERY important article that includes information about “apaths”. I always called them the minions but I am so pleased to see them recognized, that I don’t have to describe the horrors of what those people did to me, but that there are some who KNOW the damage of apaths, that they can be every bit as awful as the core sociopath/psychopath b/c they are greater in number and affect others. I am reposted the link only b/c your post was at the end of a thread and it’s SO important that it must be repeated, and often!! THANK YOU BEV, for teaching me ANOTHER piece of info that is validating and healing.
(as posted by BEV)

Hope Springs

And, I thank you NotWhatHeSaidofMe.

That article is one of the BEST articles that I have read on the subject of P/SPs and how and why They can continue to dupe.

My son is a P/SP and my husband is an apath. 100%.

I am the ‘token’ empath, as stated in that article. I am made to look like the crazy one and am fighting alone.

My son continues to draw my husband in and convince my husband that I am wrong.

What a fun life I am having these days…


I am sooo sorry for your pain Bev do you trust your husband aside of his siding with your son? Do you think you could get him alone and show him this realization as you point out things have examples to back it up. Maybe you can get atleast him back on your side😔 What does everyone think? Is that bad advise that would be what I would do unless I felt my son had completely had my husband brain washed. I will pray for you!! Being gained up on has to be even worse!

Hope Springs

You hit the nail on the head.

Yes, I trust me husband and yes, my son has a ‘familial’ power over my husband. When my husband visits with him, he almost always comes back brainwashed.

The more that I try and point out examples, the more my husband seems to regress. Like, why can’t I just get over the past? Even tho our son still lies and lives a charade…

The pain that I have is unbelievable. 40 years with my guy and this is ripping us apart.

Thank you for your support Ladybugg.


I am sorry I am gonna pray that your son does something so bold that your husband can not deny it any further. I really wish he could see the facts. all though I am amazed at how my Spath totally screwed with my head ,but I read the books and there is no denying what I am dealing with.
you know what the biggest hurdle there is for you? I just met my path 4 years ago and it’s all spelled out clearly in the order of the stages.
the thing is I am thinking your husband won’t see the pattern at all. Here is why First he has been in his live on a constant basis, and the operation has to be totally differant for a family relationship then a Romantic one. after all he can’t possibly ever be thinking about discarding you!
I bet there are specific books on psychopaths being your children and what that would operate like. if you got that and had your husband read it he may see.
just a suggestion I know I can see it all so clearly now!
If you had something describing how a son that has always been in your life’s operating tactics work maybe that would just do it.

best of luck stay strong!!

Hope Springs

Ladybugg, thank you. I am so emotional right now, and I am trying to stay strong.

You are so wise! Once again, nail on the head.

This is different than a SP who comes into your life and wreaks havoc, as in a romance. So different.

We have been ‘IN IT’ for almost 35 years. There are many things or instances, over the years, that are plain to see, for me at least. I could tell you so many. Killing an animal, accusing my husband of the unspeakable (which was proven untrue), subsequently being placed in foster care, marrying and having two children way too fast and destroying that…and many other ‘strange’ behaviors, as well as ALL of the character traits of a P/SP and being diagnosed as such at least two times by two different counselors.

But, my husband thinks (because he says this to me)…maybe our son is a different person now. Now that his marriage is over. Maybe now he will smarten up and is ready to ‘change’. (Of course, he will NEVER change…he is a P/SP but he wears a good mask for my husband every time). He thinks that I should give our son another chance.

Thank you Ladybugg. So much. For listening.


Now that I am no longer trying to find a way to fit into my (ex) husband’s world, and esp because I KNOW what a sociopath is (many don’t really “get it”), I see a LOT more clearly.

Your son is doing to your husband what my ex does to people. He uses your husbands desires to manipulate him. The way my ex did it was by making several statements that could be true as stand alone statements. For example, my ex would say, “You are the best thing that ever happened to me. I never want to lose you out of my life.” Sounds good to the uninformed. But… it’s what he doesn’t say that reveals the truth. Notice the statement is like dangling a carrot but there’s nothing that declares loyalty or actions that make the statement reliable or valid. The TRUTH is that in order for my ex to not “lose me”, my ex lied. He wasn’t faithful, he was very sneaky and deceitful.

I’m willing to bet that if you could record what your son says, you’d find the same type of manipulation. That statements IMPLY an emotional connection to your husband, but in reality, they are nonsense statements, they don’t actually communicate anything and they rely on your husband’s INTERPRETATION of the statements… but… there are multiple interpretations and not a single one is the same as what your husband thinks is being said.

You son knows how to con your husband, just as mine knew how to con me. Only, now that I know about nonsense statements that infer multiple interpretations, and how those kind of statements are used to gaslight me, I know there is NOTHING my ex would say that was authentic, my ex was ALWAYS speaking in “gaslight”. And yes, BRAINWASH is the consequence of a gaslight conversation.

When your husband says “why can’t you get over the past”, the answer is “it’s because Son’s behavior continues in the present.” What your son did were not “incidences”; rather they are BEHAVIORS. Your son has a BELIEF system, a way of processing information and decision choices that is known as sociopathy, and his behaviors are sociopathic. Your son’s rationale will NEVER arise from morality.

It seems to me that your husband refuses to educate himself about sociopaths b/c knowing the truth interferes with his emotional desire. Don’t underestimate the power of emotional desire. People make nearly all their decisions based on emotion… and then rationalize them with logic. (that’s how stock market and real estate bubbles happen, and why 50 year old men buy Mustangs or muscle cars and why women wear hair styles that look like dogs ears hanging around their faces.)

Hope Springs

I also think son says things to my husband like ‘thanks for always being there for me, Dad’ or something to that effect…and my husband LIVES for those sorts of comments. From anyone, really. My husband likes to be the great ‘fixer’ of everything. Also, the great ‘mediator’, etc. All good qualities, unless it has to do with a P/SP.

That is how son keeps my husband reeled in. My husband likely believes that son really MEANS it, emotionally.

Yes, about the past…and present…son has had the very same behavioral pattern forever. Because my husband rarely sees him (and son was in foster care for 8 years also), my husband can’t or won’t see the pattern.

Why can I so plainly see it? I do not have the answer.

Hope Springs

I trust MY husband…not ME…

I trust my husband in all other ways, but the pain that I go through when he visits my son is indescribable. That makes me not trust him. How, when he knows how it hurts me, can he do it? I literally could not do that to him.

If my husband was in my shoes, I would open my eyes and see what he was saying to me. Because he is my partner and I love him. I would trust that what he is saying is the truth, especially because he is concerned about it and it is coming from him. Why would he lie to me about something so awful as having a P/SP son. I mean, who wants that?

I am not afforded that same courtesy when it comes to our son. My husband always goes back to ‘he is our son’.


Before your son was born did your husband show regard for your feelings?
I think It is too hard for your husband to admit, he will change his tune when your son starts being mean to him.
according to what I have read everybody is expendable to a spath sooner or later. I just remembered that I take back what I said before about him not possibly planning to discard you. It is just so mind boggling for me ,but they say a true spath does not bound to anyone. I guess that means even parents… He will turn on your husband too eventually unless he has a great supply for him to leach on. when his need runs out he’ll turn on him too.
I am sorry for your pain and I will pray there is some resolve where you and her husband can atlas see eye to eye on this.

Hope Springs

Yes, my husband showed regard for my feelings our whole marriage, really, until now.

I think he perhaps feels that because there is nobody else in our son’s ‘corner’ right now, that he has to be.

You are correct…my husband and son also have no REAL bond. It is plain to see, but you are also correct, my husband does not want to admit that we should have NO CONTACT with our own son.

Will he ‘choose’ our son over me? Perhaps.

I really have been discarded by my son (because he knows that I am onto him and do not have any trust or belief in him at all), but my son does not let my husband know that. As far as my husband knows, our son wants a relationship with me, because he says that when my husband visits. My poor husband comes home with this burden on him to get evryone together again and make everyone happy This is how twisted this all is. It is torture. I am being made to look like the unforgiving cold one who is going ‘crazy’. It a clusterf**k, excuse my language.


It’s very tragic. Your husband feels bonded to his son, but… you know and I know that your son FEELS NO BOND to your husband.

That’s the part that is so dangerous. Your son uses your husbands need for a connection to him. Unfortunately you see this in kids who murder their parents in order to inherit. These sociopath kids see their parents “stuff” as theirs.

You can make bank on that mindset that your son wants your assets. And that as a sociopath, he’s not only capable of murder, but that murder is his preferred option.

I am saying your husbands refusal to see the truth is a blindspot that can get YOU murdered just as easily as it can get HIM murdered. So maybe it’s Your blindspot too?

I know I am blunt. But I am truly concerned for your well being. Murder IS so possible. And YOU are NOT SAFE. 🙁

Hope Springs

Your two posts are so spot on.

I have been trying to figure out why my husband continues to believe that there is anything real between he and son. Like you say, it is my husband’s emotional desire that is interfering with his seeing things clearly.

I have thought about whether son is capable of what you are talking about, namely murder. I used to worry about that and I never knew why. I remember saying to my husband when son was little, more than once, he’s going to kill us in our sleep someday…I was half joking, but sort of not, either. Son just seemed to have some underlying current of strangeness (I now now it was/is P/SPathy). My husband said I was nuts. We laughed it off.

I don’t think son would do that, but what do I know? Maybe I should be more wary about that.

My husband does have a blindspot when it comes to son. I don’t, but if I bring this up again, my husband will chalk it up to irrationality.


The reason I send a warning to you about your son is shown in your reply. You don’t “think my son would do that”… but that’s just the point.

IF he truly is a sociopath, then thinking isn’t necessary. By the very definition of a sociopath, HE WOULD.

Sociopaths don’t always murder but they are just as capable of it with as much concern as choosing a hamburger versus pizza.

The only thing that stopped my ex from murdering was he didn’t want to go to prison.(he told me! one day when I discovered him killing an animal, in a calm quiet matter of fact tone of voice, I asked “why don’t you kill people” and he answered ‘because I don’t want to go to prison.”) But then he found a way to make it happen, there came an opportunity that he could get away with it (defending himself from a “crazy” wife, me, a wife that was not really crazy but set up and smeared), there was nothing to stop him and it almost happened, only stopped b/c a witness saw that the woman (me!)being attacked was not ‘crazy’ but was clearly trapped and was the one being attacked, it was clear I was NOT the aggressor.

I tell you this b/c with YOUR particular son, you are in danger. KNOWING that as a sociopath, he has the kind of mind that WILL murder helps you to make better choices if survival matters to you.

(for a LONG time during my marriage and for a couple of years after leaving my ex, survival did not matter to me. I was NOT suicidal but I didn’t care if I died either. This is a common outcome for victims of sociopaths, until we get some healing and recover our psychological well being.)

I find it heartbreaking that you spoke an intuitive truth and your husband said YOU were nuts, rather than commiserate with you that your son was nuts (moral insanity).


Please re-read your own link, that excellent article. Your husband is an “apath”; apathy is an avoidant strategy. BUT avoidance does NOT change the truth, that your son is a SOCIOPATH, ie someone who can choose murder as easily as ordering off a menu.


My ex husband’s mantra “submit or be destroyed”…. it’s the mantra of ALL sociopaths.

Now I will stop. I wrote not just to you but to others who are on the fence thinking their sociopath wouldn’t go that far. They fail to see that the sociopath has ALREADY crossed over that line.

Hope Springs

How can I thank you enough, NotWhatHeSaidofMe, for all of this help that you are giving me. Do you realize what this is doing for me? To take the time to write all of this fantastic ‘stuff’ and post it, is beyond wonderful of you. I know that we are all here to help each other and offer suggestions and guidance to each other, but some of us (you, becomingstrong, and a few others) really do go that extra ‘mile’ and also show so much caring. I literally cry good tears when you or one of those others, grace us with your wisdom, intelligence, and experience. Sorry to sound so sappy and corny, but I am so humbled and I sincerely cling to your words like they are gospel. Enough.

I know that son is a SP. I know it. Therefore, he is capable of anything, because, like you say, to them, nothing really matters. I do know that son would never go to jail, thank goodness, so that is what will keep him from murdering me. I am certain that he could do it without any qualms, however, if he could get away with it scot-free. No doubt in my mind.

He is triangulating my husband, myself, his ex, and his foster parents at the moment. He has been laying low for about a year because we were all so angry at him about his break up with his ex and how he was handling the whole thing. Not to mention, that he was the cause of the break up(of course he was). Plus using his two children as manipulation during all of this (poor them for what they have as a father).

Like I said, there has been no contact with us for almost a year and out of the blue this past weekend, he texts my husband to invite him (us) to his son’s birthday party. He knew that I would NEVER IN A MILLION YEARS, agree to go. I am also sure that he knew my husband would say ‘I will go, but Mom probably won’t’ (my husband can’t say NO to him and son knows it). Anyway, long story short, my husband went, much to my chagrin, came back home, and tried to draw me back in by telling me that son wants a relationship with us. (This wanting a ‘relationship’ after I mistakenly sent him the coldest email that said that I would never have contact with him again. What person in their right mind would even want to try again to even see me after a letter that was so truthful and harsh and raw was given to them by me? I can see all of this so clearly, but of course, my husband cannot. He sees it as an attempt by son to ‘take the high road’, and forgive my craziness and irrationality (that actually is funny…he forgive me) and try to repair fences.

It strikes me that we have hardly had son in our lives since, when he was 7/8, we placed him into a foster home. Of course, we all know why he went into care. Because he is a P/SP. In getting back into each others lives when he was 16, we still rarely saw him. Only in small doses. I was sucked in for awhile, that he may be different…changed…not knowing what a P/SP even was. Maybe that is why my husband cannot SEE what has to be done. Because we have not been in son’s life for enough time for my husband to put all of son’s behaviors together. Why can I put it all together and my husband can’t seem to get there?

I am rambling on and on and it seems that no matter what I do or say to my husband, like you said, it only serves to interfere with my husband’s emotional desire. It appears as if I do not have a hope of changing anything.

Hope Springs

That first sentence is a typo…so sorry


Bev I am soooo sorry for your situation just please never give up hope. Hope is all we have at times😔 Good advise NotWhatHeSaidOfMe and gutsy I had the same fear but did not know how to point out to a mother her son could possibly have no quawms at murder😔 I am glad that you had the courage to boldly go there. That being said I agree anything is possible please be careful Bev and I guess really that is also a good reminder to all of us who are getting madder by the minuet as we see how deeply we were played, manipulated, emotionally raped, and made out to look like a crazy person…the list goes on. We should all remember there are no boundaries to there revenge so just leave it alone.
I will just be praying as I stated before Bev that your husband see’s something he can not just write off…. That he wakes up to the reality of who your son really is. So you can atleast have your husband back and not feel alone in all this. till that time comes your not alone. You have us! I know this makes me feel less alone I have my family and my friends yes ,but let’s face it till you have been at the receiving end of this cold calculated game you don’t really know how this feels! After all we are the only ones who truly know that we were trying our hardest and are doing nothing intensionaly to upset anyone. It truly is just lack a big slap in the face after you have done nothing but try to please please please, and it all ends up that it was a waste of your time on nothing more then a game. (That last part was aimed mostly at relationship victims) Bev your situation I know must feel even heart truly hurts for you. Stay strong and NEVER GIVE UP HOPE! That is for all of us!! Hugs to you all!

Hope Springs

Ladybugg, thank you again. I want that so badly, as well. To have my husband back. To not feel so alone.

When ‘son’ was in care, we were so happy together. It was like 8 years of bliss, only I didn’t realize it at the time because we were often sad about having put him into care. Of course, back in the 80s, we were not able to research what being a P/SP meant.

Although we were sad that our little family unit was not there, we always had hope that when ‘son’ was of age, that we would all be together again. And, we were, but, of course, that family unit will never be a real one, now that we know what we know.

Dealing with ‘son’ is like bad game, just like you say. P’SPs simply cannot have real relationships. At all. They can only play ‘games’ with others.

Hope Springs

And…I want something to happen that my husband can not ‘write off’ as you so properly put it. It’s pretty bad when you wish for something bad enough to happen just to be happy again…

Hope Springs

You’re right Ladybugg…I should never give up hope. I just get so sick and tired of all of this.

I have come so far this past year, having absolutely no contact with ‘son’ and it hurts me so much that it all backslides when my husband gets sucked into engaging with son. It is painful, sick feeling, gut wrenching shit.

Thank you. In the day time, things always seem more hopeful. At night, things sometimes appear hopeless.


Oh and to NotWhatHeSaidOfMe which wow that username says it all for all of us! I am so glad that the right person was there to stop your husband! I am so sorry you had to go through that as well I have definitely not had it as bad as some of you and I feel just gone inside. I feel like a whiner compared to what some of you have been through yet I am totaly destroyed myself…that’s very confusing to me I guess the emotional betrayal hurts just as bad no matter how far it escalates.😔

Hope Springs

Yes, NotWhatHeSaidofMe has really been through the wringer…and almost murdered!

That is why she is so knowledgeable on these problems.

Thank goodness she survived and is here to live the life that she wants and deserves and also, that she is here for us.

Hope Springs

You are not a whiner Ladybugg! Please don’t feel that way. Please. You are helping others, too, you know. Me, for one.

Each of us have definitely been through shit with P/SPs! Bad shit.


Well I know that, I’m just saying I can’t imagine feeling worse then I do. I guess it makes me feel a little guilty… I have just been away from mine for a week I need to remember that everything was a competition with him and they were are a big stage set to make me feel guilty. I need to find a way out of that mind set. I think my biggest fear is he changed me to be like him. Did anyone else fear that?

Hope Springs

I understand what you mean about how some people’s stories seem worse.

I feel that way too. I can’t imagine having a partner or husband who is a P/SP, because the P/SP in my life, is the son.

Cheers 🙂


Hi Ladybugg, I think every vicim of a sociopath has that fear when they start educating themselves on all the manipulation tactics that the sociopath used on them. It’s scary but trust me you are NOT like him!!!! Know this he just opened the door for you to see the hell on this planet. Close the door by educating yourself and keep the no contact rule in place and you will find yourself moving back towards your old self.

Experts say that it is very important to go back to your religious roots if you had any…ie go to church, go to old places that you went to before you met your ex, return to your old schools and walk around (after school hours), play sports that you use to or a hobby that you had that you stop doing because of the sociopath. Look at old photo albums and when you look at each picture think about that day and how you felt in that moment.

Talk with friends & family about old times. These things will all open your mind back up to who you were before and then you will see that you are NOT like him one bit. Get out and take a walk and instead of being in your mindset look around and see the grass, trees, homes & sky. Then say what you like i.e. I like the color of that home, I love that flowering bush. This will help you to get out of your mindset.

You have change because he took your innocents away…now you are aware that sociopaths exist and more importantly that they are evil and manipulative everyone around you. This is a blessing because in the future you will see the danger if you follow your first gut reaction to someone.

The book Gift of fear by Gavin Debecker is a very good book to read to remind you to follow your gut. Google “Oprah Gavin Debecker you tube” to watch their interview about following your gut always.

Also google “sociopath pity play” and do a search right here on love fraud also.

I know it’s very scary to feel all the feelings that are coming up…but you are making great progress. You are doing the work to educating yourself by reading books like Psychopath Free and reading LoveFraud and asking questions & venting. All great steps. It just takes time to unravel all the brain washing that the sociopath did to you. But you will get to a peaceful place.

Also know that you will go thru all the grieving stages just like if their was a death. So google “grieving stages” so that you will know that your feelings are normal. You may go thru the grieving stages several times. The angry stage is the worst 🙁

Congrats on one Week!!! Huge step in your recovery!!


Thank you Jan7 for all the info. I grieved for two months straight before and I went back to him because I could not stand it!! I went back and he was even more cold and totaly demanding I know now that he was trying to get rid of me he had been making me feel replaceable for quite a while and I know he already has his eye on his new target and I think I know who it is. He has been trying to make me suspicious of her (then says he’s not) but for crying out loud he calls her “that girl your jealous of” because he wants me to be!!!


His behavior is infuriating. If he wanted to get rid of you, he could break up with you in a normal way – tell you kindly and gently one time and then stop seeing you. Consider that he is deliberately manipulating you, manufacturing jealousy and anxiety in you (normal responses to his behavior), and creating drama, because that is what he likes doing. Spaths especially enjoy the suffering of their victims. He likely will continue to try to engage and manipulate you while he tells lies about you to some other victim, and tells you lies about her. Spaths do it often; it’s called Triangulation. Here’s some info on triangulation:

You’re doing the best thing for yourself by having no contact and denying him any access to you. If you haven’t done it already, consider blocking him on all social media, and make your own accounts private so that he can’t see them by opening a new fake account.

How you describe his behavior makes me think that as long as he thinks he can get an emotional response out of you, he will probably contact you and try to ‘suck you in’ again. It’s common to psychopaths; it’s called ‘hoovering.’ Considering planning what you will do if he contacts you. My ex P had an uncanny knack for contacting me when I was not expecting it and off guard. The best response is for you to not even take his call, listen to any message he leaves you, read any note or email, not to allow him any access to you, to protect you from the emotional pain that he will always cause you whenever you have any contact. If he says he’s changed, that he’s seen the light, or similar, consider that it’s probably a lie for the purpose of tricking you into interacting with him again. If he wanted to treat you well, he would have treated you well all along. You’ve done everything possible to explain to him the impact on you of his choices. He knows what he’s doing, but he will never admit it. He blames it on you, or his own ineptness, or his childhood, etc. etc.
If you must have contact with him for some reason (hopefully you never won’t), the greyrock technique is the only thing that ‘works’ in dealing with a spath.


Thank you so much for all your help. Yes he enjoys torchering I think my last email did it. I told him simply this I know, I know why my emotions are so hard for me to control. I know all about every stage the luring, the love bombing, then devaluation, and the inevetable discharge. Go ahead show this to anyone your trying to target next to make me look crazy she should really see it after all it will be her reality!!
So he knows that I do not buy any of it and he knows I know I won’t hear from him again.

Hope Springs

Ladybugg, I am wondering if once the P/SP knows that you (we) are ‘onto’ them…what exactly they think about that? I wonder how they ‘deal’ with the knowledge that someone is onto their game?

You say that you emailed him and told him that you know that he is disordered and you are done with him. I also did that with ‘son’. (My email was mistakenly sent to him, but I am glad now). He replied back some eerily calm rebuttal about how I needed help and and then blocked me. I was so relieved and happy. Result, I thought! I did not hear from him again for almost a whole (wonderful) year…until this past weekend, out of the blue, when he contacted my husband to go to his own son’s birthday party.

Now, does the P/SP want tp try and prove us wrong about them being disordered? Or, do they want to further destroy us or even kill us, because WE KNOW and we won’t take their crap any more? Or, when they pop back up, are they simply just bored and want to toy with us again? Try and suck us in again?


In my experience, it depends on what the psychopath wants and how he thinks he can get what he wants. I was able to predict my ex P’s behavior fairly well when I finally understood what he wanted and how he thinks.

When he knew for sure that I saw through his mask, he dropped me like a hot potato and put all his energy into a full time smear campaign of me. However, I discern that if I ever gave him reason to think that he’s be able to manipulate and deceive me again, and I have something he wants, he’d engage me again. Spaths tend to troll everyone they ever were acquainted with for new victim(s).

Hope Springs

Yes, and in my case, it is my husband that son knows will ‘always be there for him’, so to speak. That gives son reason to manipulate and deceive. It also draws me in, indirectly, and I am sure that son knows that. Therefore, he continues to mind**** both of us, as per. It must delight him to know that even though I THINK that I am finished with him, because mu husband is not, I inevitably cannot be either. What a little worm.

That pisses me off.

What did you mean in your last sentence AnnettePK? I’m not certain what you meant.


Thanks for asking; it isn’t really clear. I meant that since, spaths lead lives of exploitation of others to get what they want, they are always on the lookout for new victims. Because they don’t bond with others, they don’t experience the beginning and ending of relationships as normal folks do. To a spath there is no beginning nor end of a relationship, anymore than a normal person picks up a hammer out of the toolbox, uses it, and puts it away. Spaths often reappear in a previous victim’s life even years or decades later, if they think there is something useful to them to exploit. It’s a phenomena to be on guard for. The spath says he’s changed, he’s seen the light, he’s had time to think, or whatever lies and lines he thinks will work on the victim. The truth is, he’s just on the prowl for a supply of whatever he wants.

Hope Springs

That makes sense.

That is ‘son’ to a tee. I ended the relationship with him. I could not have been colder, nor clearer.

It was and continues to be the end, for me.

Not for him, obviously, as I have realized this past weekend.

I guess the only REAL way for an ending for them is if they die, or their victim does.


Those would be the only certain solutions. Realistically, all the victim can do it to put in place as many barriers to interaction and exploitation as possible in one’s life. Block social media, avoid mutual friends of the spath, unlisted phone, not let the spath know where one lives and works, become as invisible and inaccessable as possible, use the greyrock technique.

I know most of these don’t apply to your situation.

Hope Springs

I am certain that is what son tells my husband.

‘I see what I’ve done.’ ‘I will change’. ‘I have seen the light’. ‘I have changed’.

It’s all bullshit, because he cannot change. He is who he is and who he will always be.


You know it, but your husband does not understand or is in denial or whatever. This has got to be very difficult to live with.


I am right there with you Bev night time always seems hopeless for me too! There is a bible verse that refers to that psalms 30:5 weeping may endure for the night but Joy comes in the morning.
I love that!! I think if your husband ever complains about anything your son does you need to tell him you don’t want to hear it you made your peace with who your son was long ago.
I have a ex that allot of these books are making me see he did allot of the same things but he never committed to me fully so I did not affect me near as much. He treated me like a closet whore pardon my French. He has shown remorse in many ways and has been my friend for 10 years now and has been there when I really needed someone. As I was going through this stuff with this Spath he said “listen to me it is not you. What happened between you and I was not your fault. All you ever did was try to love beyond all conditions. I kept you where I wanted you. I wanted everything on my terms and I treated you like dirt. It was never you! It was me. I am sorry!”
He has looked my father in the eye and told him he was sorry for how he treated me. I feel he is sincere and by the way he never even met my Dad until the day he shook his hand and told him that.
He said “the man I was with was a alcoholic that did not have Christ and that is not who he is anymore.” I am keeping him at arm’s length though. I am Leary though he has been nothing but there for me and sweet to me for 6 years now….We are strictly friends!! The part you said about them coming back AnnettePK is why I said all that.


Bev I honestly think mine will just go away, plenty of people to deceive he got two things from me torturing me and Sex I cut sex off long ago because he purposely made me suspicious (triangulation) and I did not feel loved and cherished and it made me sick to give him that precious gift of myself… Had no clue how deeply he already had my mind till going NC and learning why I am not even my old self anymore. Now I have told him I know why and I know his game he is not dumb if I know it won’t hurt me anymore. No fun for him! I will find my way back to my happy go lucky self though!!😊


Thank you Jan7 I just always saw that as torture if you want my opinion it was all nothing but torture from hello! I have blocked him on social media as well as on my phone and his emails go strait to trash! I will read nothing because his words are nothing but poison I have not blocked the home phone yet I have to call att and get the blocking code. I am doing great really compared to the first few days I also have a great counselor and I am getting so much help from you all here. So anytime he try’s to tap into any trained behavior planted during the love bombing he is revisiting it! Interesting. I really think he will just move on he has nothing more to gain from me and he knows it!! I hope I am right all though my home phone got a blocked call today that usually does not happen I think it was just a fluke. No one here answers them anyway. Our motto is if you can’t show your name we probably don’t want to talk to you! If it’s important they will leave a message. Might be rude ,but it’s been that way for some time. Thanks again for all your help.


Hi Ladybugg, your welcome!! 🙂

what they do is pure pure evil. The mind games will drive anyone to feel like they are being tortured. it’s so crazy looking back because I saw every thing in the beginning but the longer you stay the more obedient you become to them and that’s when the door to the outside world closes on you. They twist up your mind so much you cant even figure out which way is up and which way is down. And if you stay to long you end up crawling out of their hell they thrusted you into. Dont get me wrong they do enjoy abusing people they love to have power & control over others so our not wrong in your thinking either.

This type of abuse recognition should be taught in middle & high school. So many innocent victims would be safe from this hell.

You should be so proud of yourself. I know it’s been very emotional for you since you left your ex but you are doing so many great things to speed up your recovery. So pat yourself on the back.

You are correct his words mean NOTHING…they are ALL lying and manipulative mind games to have power & control over you. Like all abusers want. You are taking back your power from him!!! BRAVO!!! SO SO POWERFUL!!

So glad that you have a “great counselor” huge huge step in your recovery. To have someone who is extremely knowledgeable walk you thru all of your emotions and help you see the truth of why this relationship will never work is really great.

One thing you need to know is a sociopath NEVER just moves on….they will alway boomerang back into a vicim life when they need something. Even 10 years from now. This is why it is so important that you educate yourself so that you know & see exactly who he is = pure evil = no good would come out of any type of relationship with him. And why it is so important to keep the no contact rule in place for the rest of your life. He will never change ever. What you saw is what you or any other romantic interest of his will get.

Remember the Natalee Holloway case? I cant remember the guys name that killed her but when he fled to South America and gambled his money away and then killed the next victim he actually got in touch with his ex high school girlfriend on the island he grew up on via phone asking for money. She had not talk to him in years and years. She did not send any to him. But never the less this is what sociopaths do they will always keep the door slightly open just incase they need anything from a person that believed their con game before.

Not rude to not answer a blocked phone number = it’s smart!!

Hope you have a bright sunny day spiritually tomorrow!! 😎🌴

Take care.


Yep I am learning that they all do the exact same stuff. Mine was maticulously calculating though started the grooming like I said from Hello!!


I am waking up angry and in a panic, but I slept like a baby! Thank you all for your kind words. I have felt nothing but crazy,weak, and pitiful for how I felt how he could make me feel. I am trying that’s all I can do!! I hope you all have a great day too!


Ladybugg – I know it’s really rough and it is such a shitty feeling when you feel upset that he made you feel the way that you feel/felt. Trying is good! And I am so happy though that you are on this website and realizing all this (e.g., who and what he is and that you don’t deserve any of this and that you aren’t crazy, etc) now. I know that if I had came to as firm of a conclusion regarding my ex right after we broke up (although I did; but then ended up blaming myself and going back to him), I would not have suffered *as* much given that I let him back into my life for a few months. I remember feeling better after 3 months of no contact, and because of cognitive dissonance (I didn’t want to believe he was a psychopath; and he had me convinced that I was the cause of all our problems), I went back to him and his mind games REALLY fucked me up the second time around. Instead of healing, I was re-traumatized and I’m still paying for it. I know it sucks now, but I’m so happy and proud of you that you are realizing all this now and sticking to it, because I believe it will save you some heartache! Stay strong!


I always felt worst in the mornings just after waking up. That’s when I’d feel the anger and the injustice the most, and when I would think about all the rotten horrible things he did to me.

In order to recover, one works through what happened, so it’s necessary to think about it and to feel the pain and to grieve. It’s best to balance working through the experience with some time spent focused on other things to take a break from the hard work of processing and grieving.


I just hope I stay strong this time which I don’t even have much of an attraction anymore….I do went back and blamed myself more then once he would have it no other way I could come back as long as I expected nothing from him. After all just being in his presence was looked apon as some kind of privalidge in his eyes!! Gag me!!ðŸ˜


I to went back that should say!!


Thank you AnnettePK for validating that for me I use to wake up angry that I married him when we were living together and I moved out and never experienced it after that. We were still (working on things) with him blaming me for leaving. When I told him point blank what he had to change I needed to feel that he cared for me to stay. He said well sorry your reverse psychology did not work on me. WHAT? Telling someone point blank and specifically the actual thing you need is not reverse psychology! Now I see it was all to put me on the defense (a useless word twist he knew I’d catch and rebut) your right once you figure it out (learn about it in my case) it’s really very simple. I always knew he was not as ignorant as he put on.
I am now going to sit down and write out a schedule for myself what to work on during the day and yes get him to stop dominating my thoughts! Thanks for all your wisdom every one of you!

Hope Springs

You are so wonderful, Ladybugg.

In coming to terms with what happened with the SP in your life, and in doing what you need to do to go one, you in turn are helping others…like me!

Cheers to you…you are truly a bright light on here. It shines through 🙂

Hope Springs

to go ON…

Not ONE…

Sorry for the typo


Bev When I said thank you for the kind words right here!!
I don’t see myself in a very good light right now and I am certainly not use to compliments😔 Sorry I really do appreciate what you said there and I did not mean to come off unappreciative. I wish I could see myself as a light. God knows that’s what I want to see. My insides feel like such a mess that someone says something nice to me I just want to scream “can’t you see what a mess I am? I hate who I have become” sorry for what ever offended you when I said kind words. Actually I probably put my reply in the wrong place too I get confused on that😁

Hope Springs

You are a light…and you could never offend me.

I understand how you are feeling. I feel the same way at times. A mess! Especially on the inside. Those are our real feelings on the inside. People don’t see that but we know it’s there.

Because of what we have been through, I think we appear as ‘lights’, on the outside, to others. What we have been through enables us to let our empathy shine to the right people. The other empathic people who are the same as we are. Those are the people who notice it and see it.

I can recognize it in you so easily! It is there, believe it.


That’s great!! 🙂 And I know what you mean about them constantly twisting words around, etc. and putting you on the defense. They want to see you squirm and they NEVER want to take responsibility for anything at all. Gosh these people are pure evil!

I also used to wake up either in tears or in utter panic and always experiencing pain. There for a while he was ALWAYS dominating my thoughts. I’m a PhD student and I was super worried that I was going to fall behind because all I could do was obsess about him/read up on manipulation/ sociopathy, etc.

Also – have you ever read that sociopaths/psychopaths actually give hints to who they really are. I remember at the beginning of the relationship with my ex, he used to tell me that he didn’t feel a thing when his aunt died or when he put his dog down, and that he thought it was weird. I remember consoling him and saying that he probably didn’t react, not because he wasn’t sad, but that he was just remaining strong for the other people in his family, etc. Now I know better. HE IS A PSYCHOPATH or at least a person that has ZERO empathy from others. For me, as a really empathetic (and too empathetic person) person, someone that does not have empathy is really hard to fathom. It is soooo scary and unreal to think that these people exist.

I read all the articles on here and comments and I am so grateful that this site exists and that there are people out there that understand and have experienced this too. It really has helped me realize that I am not crazy, wrong, horrible, etc and allowed me to realize that I’m not making up his craziness. Thank you to everyone for your wise and kind words.

Hope Springs

I agree! I am so grateful for this site.

Same to you, iHATEhim…thank you for your wise and king words.


Oh my goodness now I see why you put Kind words! 😆😂😆 I automatically thought I did something wrong ,but It gave me a chance to say what I really feel when I get a compliment!!

Hope Springs




The hints you describe are sometimes called ‘tells.’ Spaths drop these hints about their own disorder for various reasons. At the beginning of the ‘relationship’ when they are luring and training the victim, tells may be tests to see how the victim will respond. If the victim doesn’t see a red flag in the tell, or excuses it as you describe, the spath learns what the victim will tolerate. I made excuses or rationalized numerous red flags and tells when my ex spath first targeted me. After I was more or less trapped in a ‘marriage’ to him, he told me he didn’t think he’d ever bonded with his mother. Even though I was beginning to recognize him as an abuser and learn what abuse is, I responded to this tell by wondering what was wrong with his mother that he didn’t bond with her.


Oh interesting. I never really thought of him showing his “tells” in order to see how I would react. But, that makes so much sense now! Do you think he had to have known he was different for a while or can people with psychopathy learn later that there is something wrong with them? I guess I say that in the sense that did he tell me he didn’t care about those around him that died because he was just realizing he didn’t care or that he already knew he didn’t care and was saying these things to gauge my reaction?

Later on in the relationship, he started showing less and less empathy (since he pretended to have empathy in the beginning) and I couldn’t understand why he wasn’t able to see my side, or anyone else’s side in situations that I or they were experiencing. I remember he was irritated at his uncle for “ruining” a family tradition because his uncle was mourning his wife’s death (and couldn’t engage fully in the tradition because he was missing his wife and it didn’t feel like a tradition to him anymore because she wasn’t present); and I tried to explain to him why his uncle was upset and that my ex should be understanding and then my ex just didn’t care and kept shaking his head (i read this as a negative body language where abusers don’t even have to say anything to discount what you say) and was complaining. This was also when he, out of nowhere, told me that “he realized he wanted a jewish girl,” even though he used to tell me that it NEVER mattered to him that I wasn’t jewish and we had been together for almost a year at that point. Needless to say this was one of his devaluation comments that caused me so much panic and confusion (I never knew where we stood). And i now realize he did that because i was much easier to control! UGH.

I cannot wait to be over this and begin to trust myself and others again. However, being with him, whether I like it or not, helped me point out fatal flaws within myself that I have to change – like being too forgiving, trusting, non-assertive, empathetic, too willing to blame myself for others wrongdoing, and willing to or unable to understand when someone is treating me badly.


Your ex spath may have had several reasons for saying that ‘tell.’ I never could really figure out how my ex spath saw himself and the level at which he understood his own disorder. I think it’s most likely that he is aware of his disorder and that he likes being the way he is. Otherwise, he would act differently.

I believe he knows right from wrong and that on some level he made a series of conscious choices throughout his life which established his psychopathy. Psychopaths’ brains are physically different than normal people; but it’s not clear to me whether their brains develop abnormally because of their moral choices or their choices of behavior result from a physical disorder. It has been empirically shown that brains physically change due to choices that become habits; and choice of thought processes. For example if one watches violent tv and thinks about violence, or watches porn and thinks about perverse sex, it causes physical changes in the brain. If a person chooses to do right, practice kindness and empathy, avoid dwelling on porn and violence when it crosses one’s mind, it leads to a healthy brain and habits of good character.
Psychopathy and related disorders are probably a combination of nature and environmental influence.

Consider that being forgiving, trusting, having empathy, and overlooking others’ minor faults and affronts, are wonderful traits that work very well in a relationship with a man of good character who cares about your well being. Being cooperative and a good follower, which are related but not the same as being non assertive, can allow your partner to be a good leader. The key to protecting yourself from someone who exploits these qualities to harm you, is knowing who deserves to have access to your wonderful self and whom you should not give your generous qualities to. Old fashioned wisdom contained in the concepts of getting to know someone in a variety of situations over a long period of time before trusting him, not having sex outside a committed relationship, and the rule of 3 – 1 lie could be a mistake, 2 lies could be a misunderstanding, 3 lies is a pattern of behavior – served to protect people from predators. These days it’s in vogue to excuse all kinds of bad behavior, to blame other factors besides individual choice, not holding people accountable, and a reluctance to identify a person and a bad person. Many of the absolutes of right and wrong that were taught a couple of generations ago, helped to protect people from spaths.


It’s good to hear you’re doing so well considering what you’ve got to deal with. It sounds like you’re doing everything you can do to take good care of yourself. Your hard work now to stay NC and to recover will result in happiness for you and for others in your life.

I call BS like your ex’s reverse psychology comment, ‘word salad.’ Spaths toss some words at their victims that make no sense. They don’t use language to communicate important facts and ideas to others. They use words to manipulate and exploit.


You are so much further along at this stage than I was. Please take heart in that you have such wisdom and insight and the intelligence to use it. Everthing you are going through is NORMAL for a person who has been treated as prey by a predator. There is NOTHING wrong about you, it was done TO YOU, not BY YOU. BRAVO to you.

Yes, you must work on not letting him dominate your thoughts. The way I did that was to substitute something joyful whenever I caught myself thinking of him. In this way, it helped my to heal my psyche b/c instead of stress, I was thinking pleasant thoughts.

Sometimes I verbally said outloud, “NO, get thee behind me Satan!” as a way to separate HIS infection from who I am.

I had photos of beautiful places I want to visit (I am an anglophile so I close my eyes and think of England). I used songs (the song Happy by Pharrell was big on my play list)… I have three different playlists, Celtic Irish songs, strong rock songs (and Tina Turner songs), and emotional songs by Josh Grobin mixed with classics from Brahms and Beethoven… Moonlight Sonata, etc.

Of course, you must chose what works for you. I only share what worked for me.

Hope Springs

KIND words!!!


I know I came out of this with one thing I will always try my hardest to build people up I always have but it will be much more distinct now because I know what it’s like to be torn down!!

Hope Springs



Yep I read about word salad in a article yesterday my counselor gave me. Something else I have noticed is everyone of us if we spell something wrong we have to correct it! As if everyone is not gonna know what we meant. I do not know about you all ,but I did not use to do it. I knit pick myself now frantically! Because if everything was not said perfectly right It was world war three! (Sometimes) but I never knew when it would be so I made it habit. Still got knit picked all to hell but I gave it my best!


My ex did this to me so I know exactly what you endured. His abuse was… if he could show that even one word was incorrect, then everything I said was invalidated. To be constantly invalidated is emotionally VERY painful, esp when it comes from someone close to us. So I ended up trying SO hard to be PERFECT and of course, the stress of it made perfection impossible. What followed was the blame, that it was MY fault, that he HAD to do harmful things to me b/c “i MADE him” since I was the one who was incorrect. I failed to have a meal ready so he HAD to go find his own meal (at some woman’s house, there were so many I didn’t know which one)… that he didn’t WANT to be unfaithful but by being incorrect he was forced to… by ME.

The pain of such logic ripped me apart. I went into a deep depression b/c all my actions were used to justify the harm done to me and I was helpless to STOP it, in fact, as it was pointed out to me, I was the one doing it to myself. He was just complying with what I made him do… and I was expected to submit since it was my fault.

It took a while for me to figure out the catch 22 he bound me up into. I did not have LOVEFRAUD or advice. I was alone. And I didn’t know about sociopaths. The opposite. I thought he could NOT be a sociopath b/c everyone liked him and NO ONE liked me. People HATED me. (I didn’t know then about how sociopaths smear their victims).

This LOVEFRAUD site was a GODSEND for me. I didn’t find it in time to avoid damage but I did find it in time to HEAL from what was done to me. You are far, far further and I am so Happy for you. This is a great resource, and now there are others that sprang from this example as others have learned that the abuse was NOT THEM, it was a Sociopath doing the abuse TO THEM.


yes I blamed myself for everything to NotWhatHeSaidOfMe I too got the famous you are doing it all to yourself. I too was forced to just except how he treated me, under the catch 22 he created where I was the reason he acted that way. the fact of the matter is this everything he did to me is textbook It is all the same! like AnnetePK said after you see it and see how their minds work it’s so simple everything was done for one of two reasons. to control or to destroy. Really in my opinion it was all to destroy they just needed the control to get that job done the goal was and always will be destroy as many as possible.I am beyond amazed, saddened, and totally pissed off that anyone would do such a thing to another human being purposely. I refuse to let him destroy me. I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me including put my mind back together. though one of the Devils minions dismantled it! I will only be lost for a little while then I will be me again only smarter,stronger, and even more compassionate!! hugs to you stay strong doll!!


I could not agree more IHateHim yes he gave hints ,but only after he tried to make me think he was the most sentimental and careing person on this earth. To hook me!!
I too am glad I can read that people feel just like me and I am as normal as I thought! He kept telling me I was not normal I would say there is nothing wrong with me. You and your psycobable is not normal. No one understands you! He’d scream and say I don’t care about what everybody else says. You never listen to me and I am the one that is right they are all wrong!
It’s all so obsurd how I knew how wrong he was yet he still got to me, poisoned me, and even how I act and react, what I believed about myself ect. I think the reason is that even though I knew he was talking crazy I thought me knowing that was enough. I did not know it was slowing methodically getting to me.


Exactly – “only after he tried to make me think he was the most sentimental and caring person on this earth” – I couldn’t agree more! They mirror us at the beginning and pretend that they care like we care; they pretend that they have empathy like we do. UGH. It totally sounds like he was projecting his characteristics onto you. And I know what you mean – they definitely methodically get at us. They very insidiously and subtling tear and wear us down.


Thank you so much NotWhatHeSaidOfMe I don’t feel like I am doing so well but you seeing it means something!😊 I am gaining a lot of insight from this forum I know that! Reading books mostly suggested by ya’ll and my therapist. I am a song writer and a singer country music and some rock is all I really lend myself to here is a song I wrote about this abuse I actually have two that was about the abuse and I wrote them before I knew what he was and what he was doing.
This is one it is entitled “the mess he left of me” the lyrics are copywrote how ever it has not been composed yet!
Hope ya’ll like it!

Your out smooth talking some new victim tonight.
Making her believe everything is perfectly right
being fooled by the best. You’ll ruin her for the rest.
You’ll twist her mind walk away and leave her a mess.
I know cuz I’m cleaning up the mess you left of me

I’m cleaning up the mess you left of me
The price I pay for believing in you foolishly
my heart is broke to the point pain is all I see
With no help from you I’m cleaning up the mess you left of me.

I didn’t even know a man could be so mean and cruel.
You gave me the best then went and changed the rules.
You changed who I am stripped me of all my pride.
I can’t get it back no matter how many tears I’ve cried.
I’m all alone cleaning up the mess you’ve left of me.

I’m cleaning up the mess you left of me
The price I pay for believing in you foolishly
my heart is broke to the point pain is all I see
With no help from you I’m cleaning up the mess you left of me.

I pray you never put someone through that kind of pain again
I pray no one ever plays your game there’s no chance the’ll win

I’m cleaning up the mess you left of me
The price I pay for believing in you foolishly
my heart is broke to the point pain is all I see
With no help from you I’m cleaning up the mess you left of me.

That’s my escape!! That and Jesus and yes I have said get behind thee Satan many times (I actually said it to his face the one and only time he tarted to put his hands on me) He got furious and the thing is I don’t even know where it came from just came out! you can call his Demons out by name too! Demons of racing thoughts, Demons of deppression, ect ect any emotion you do not want to have is one of his Demons!!
Thank you for everything all of you!


I agree AnnettePK mine definatly makes clear choices can’t stand people taking the high road and he has nothing but violence and porn on the brain!! Enjoys it!! That being said these patterns are not gonna change at age 49 so he can hang it up he is who he is and he will pay the consequences if there are any for people like that!!

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