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By September 4, 2013 49 Comments Read More →

Ending My Relationship With a Sociopath: Separation and Manipulation

By Quinn Pierce

Shattering the Illusion

Once I learned that my husband was a sociopath, it was a lot like looking at one of those Magic Eye puzzles that don’t look like anything except random, tiny shapes and then, suddenly, a three dimensional image appears out of nowhere.

Unfortunately, this lead to the realization that my entire marriage was an optical illusion covering up a very scary reality.  And once the illusion was shattered, I felt like I was living with a stranger who was capable of harming my children and me in ways I hadn’t even realized.

However, I also learned that separating from a sociopath and, subsequently, divorcing one is not any easier than living with one.  Without the emotional attachment that the rest of us feel, and with a constant need to control and keep a façade in place, a sociopath can be even more scary and manipulative when given an ultimatum that will alter his life in a way he does not want.

Techniques of Manipulation:

Before our separation, my ex was going down the list of last ditch efforts to prevent the inevitable.  He did not want a divorce; he needed to keep the family unit intact in order for him to maintain the image he had cultivated for so many years.  I didn’t know at the time, but it was a checklist of sorts, and he tried each manipulative technique in rapid succession.

1. Blame”¦

I remember going to marriage counciling and sitting across from him listening in awe as he painted a very different picture from what the reality of our home life encompassed.  He dismissed his abusive behaviors as responses to being upset by my actions, he blamed all of our children’s emotional distress on me, and he belittled my role in, well, everything.

Needless to say, we did not make any progress in counseling.

2. Anger and Threats”¦

Then, he moved on to anger and intimidation, threatening to take the children, keep the house, and destroy everything he could that I loved.  The tirades also included trying to verbally strip me of all my worth as a woman, mother, wife, and human being in general.  He accused me of deceit, lying, cheating, and manipulation.  It was actually a very true description of his own behavior.

The incidents of tantrums increased, the reckless behavior- leaving the house enraged and not returning until the next day, also increased.  This was a very tumultuous time in our home.  I would try to distract him and keep him away from the children when he was enraged, and I would often find the children huddled together and hugging each other in the corner of their bedroom or under the bed.  To this day, my ex does not believe anything he did was abusive and claims that the children ”˜should have known he wouldn’t hurt them’.  This strengthened my resolve to get him out no matter what.

3. Remorse”¦

When the intimidation didn’t work, he suddenly switched gears and went in the complete opposite direction.  Every day was filled with remorse, tears, and empty promises of how he was going to change. If I hadn’t heard every single promise dozens of times before, it might have been somewhat believable.

4. Emotional Breakdown”¦

Possibly sensing the fake tears and false words were not working either, his efforts took a more dramatic flair.  He called me from work to tell me that he was having an emotional breakdown and couldn’t function.  He had never sounded so despondent and confused, and I immediately dropped everything and went to where he was.  He was shaking and crying and begging me to help him.  I drove him to the doctor who gave him a sedative and checked him over, but concluded it was most likely an emotional overload type of reaction.

I didn’t know this was all a well planned act and I fell for it hook, line, and sinker.  It probably bought him about a month of reprieve from the separation process, as I felt compelled to help him through whatever it was he was experiencing.  I was not about to kick him out if he was in a medical crisis.

A couple of years later, I read an article about sociopaths and the games they will play to manipulate those around them.  I froze in place as I read word-for-word the entire scenario that I experienced with my ex and his emotional ‘crisis’.  He knew I would not turn my back on someone whom I believed needed help and, more importantly, was asking for help.  I didn’t have any intention of staying with him at the time, but I didn’t feel comfortable  throwing him out without trying to help him find resources he could use to support him while on his own.  Little did I know, I was the one who would need the resources for support.

5. Playing the Victim”¦

Next, he reached out to family members, usually mine, telling them that I was depressed, unstable, on too much medication, etc.  Essentially, he was painting a picture of a mentally unstable woman who didn’t know what she was saying or doing.  At the same time, he was painting himself to be the hero who was trying to keep his family together while embracing the victim role.

He succeeded in convincing just about everyone that I was the villain and he was the victim.  Ironically, my biggest support came from my children.  They knew the reality of what we lived with, and even though they were not old enough to understand everything that was going on, I made sure they knew their father’s behavior was unacceptable.  I explained to them that the three of us were working very hard through counseling and practicing the right way to behave, but their father did not think he was doing anything wrong and refused to try to change his behavior.  They understood this, because we had all tried to convince my ex that he was hurting us in different ways and we begged him to get help.  His refusal was crushing to them; it was despicable to me.

6. Social Isolation”¦

The last thing my ex did before moving out was go door to door in our neighborhood explaining that we had mutually agreed to separate, again painting a picture of himself as the selfless, caring, genuine person that he was not.

When he finally left the house, he made good on several  promised threats from the year before.  Like a virus, he began infecting everyone around me by staying socially connected to friends we shared and family that believed his lies.  I spent the first few months a virtual prisoner in my home, afraid to encounter the negative response to my decision, becoming more and more isolated each day.

Affirmation of Making the Right Decision

But, my resolve did not waiver.  The day my ex moved out was the first time in nine years that my son did not have an accident in his bed overnight.  And he never had another again. My other child seemed like a huge burden had been lifted, and he, too, could relax for the first time in his young life.

The disappearance of symptoms was startling and instantaneous.  I knew we had a rough road ahead of us, and we did, but these were clear signs that I had made the right decision for my children.

The illusion had exploded into a million pieces, and I had no intention of trying to piece it back together.  We were well on our way down this path to freedom and recovery, and we only needed to look back to know we were headed in the right direction.

 



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49 Comments on "Ending My Relationship With a Sociopath: Separation and Manipulation"

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Wow, Quinn! This is just what happened to me and my kids! Isn’t it uncanny how they use the same playbook of methods of manipulation? From spreading rumors about me, telling my family and whoever else would listen that I was “mentally ill”, threats, using my own family to help him, etc., etc. The kids told a therapist they were afraid he would hurt me. And suddenly the car I was driving the kids around in, broke down—the mechanic said I had one broken axle, and the other was almost broken. Hmmm….since I was only driving in town, and not using the minivan for off-roading or whatever else MIGHT have caused both axles to be destroyed at the same time, it seems to be he WAS trying to hurt me. And yet, he sure played the victim and had people thinking I was the nutty one!

You are certainly correct in saying that divorcing/leaving one of these creatures IS as difficult as living with them. Actually, it may be MORE difficult, as then they totally flip out,trying to maintain control in any sick, deviant way possible. As you probably know, leaving an abuser raises the risk of violence astronomically!

I am so glad that you and your children are doing well. The anniversary of my son’s suicide is tomorrow, and his loss is a constant reminder of the hell my kids and I lived with. We are all doing better now, and of course, my son in Heaven is watching out for us. I know his loss will not be in vain, for in educating others about the very real danger that spaths create, I hope that we can prevent such losses from hitting other families.

Blessings to you and all other folks who have, or will have, to deal with these awful creatures. Lovefraud is a lifeline to freedom and sanity in a world turned upside down.

Quinn – what a powerful testimony to the truth. Thank you.

Wow. I had never connected the dots that after I left my ex in the next 6 months I had 3 flat tires, failed brakes and a broken axil on my car. I just viewed the incidents as major frustrations when my money was so tight. That is scary! And I am to niave, because right in middle of all of that he even explicitly threatened to kill me.

Quinn and all,

Again, thank-you Quinn for an excellent and clear article. I hope that this article inspires action to anyone who is still trying to work it out with a disordered person. It may be hell leaving one, but wasting your life with one is, well….. a waste.

Every one of these types that I have been involved with (all for under a year, but there have been multiples) did every one of the things you outline, at the end.

So, even in short term relationships, where one would assume there is ‘less to lose’, they go through some level of these machinations. It may not be as severe, but it all happens the same. I was slandered (called a narcissistic sociopath by his padre), my radiator plug was pulled (that cost me 1500.00 bucks). I was called a sex addict. I was told by the police that I was a prostitute, and asked all sorts of questions before they realized it was totally ridiculous.

I think what Almostlost says, that the likelihood of violence increases after we leave, is true. I think the degree of ‘violence’ and manipulation also must correlate to the level of disorder the individual has as well.

So mindful awareness and vigilance is critical during this time.

Slim

I feel like I just read about my life! The only difference was that he was too far away to mess with my car… He broke into my bank account instead. He messed with my bill pay so payments were late and then asked to have my car repossessed. He tried to take away the house. I changed my bank password so many times, yet he still got my new account information (one time before I even had it). I ended up with so many passwords and so many types of protections on accounts, I had to keep cheat sheets with me so I could remember all the nonsense passwords! The threats are still regular years later. The lies he has some people believing are insane, yet highly educated people believe every word. The long term and lengthy abuse of a spath is truly unbelievable!

Thank you for sharing your story and like the others the pattern you describe resonates completely with me. I wondered if anyone had any advice for protecting children in this situation? I have a 13 year old girl and am in the process of trying to separate from my sociopath. All my finances are tied up in our joint home and he has over the 10 years bled me dry of my savings, usual story I’m sad to say. What concerns me most at the moment is that I have noticed recently he is exerting more control over our daughter as he I believe begins to realise that for me there is no going back this time. And she too is exhibiting the same behaviour that I used to use to placate him – treading on eggshells around him, running to him immediately when he calls her (she doesn’t do this with anyone else), getting extremely nervous if she hasn’t phoned him at the exact time he has asked, no longer sticking up for herself when he is being unreasonable and more. He calls her into different rooms to me and will whisper to her. I have spoken to her only in terms of saying that her father’s behaviour is not normal. Like most children she loves him unconditionally and is very confused. He is threatening me as we go through mediation to sort out property and access that he will go for full custody or unreasonable joint custody and I understand in the UK that as she is of an age they can ask her view. I am so scared that she will be scared to speak out. It is breaking my heart and I just wish I had had the strength to leave him earlier but it is only recently I have realised he is a sociopath. Any advice anyone can give would be greatly appreciated. Thank you and best wishes to you all.

I am going through a divorce also . I know property and asset seperation will be very messy. At the end though it is just material things. My advise is that you should not worry about this at all until it happens. Think about that you have your sanity and your peace back. I do feel the same as Quinn . My 20 years triage was an illusion that exploded the day he left and discarded his family as we were trash to be thrown away. I have a family therapist, a good lawyer and my faith in god. For me the most important rule was the no contact at all not even emails. If you respond to any of his worthless words you actually give him satisfaction and control. Ignore him, only communicate through an attorney. Narcissists hate being ignored because they feel like now you are superior. That’s the only defeat that works. It has been 6 months now and I feel much at peace now. I am thankful to his young co worker who initiated an affair with him. For ever I will owe her. If it wasn’t for that little tramp I probably woul have ended up in a mental institution. Fabricating lies that I was mentally ill was his pleasure. And him being a deputy it made it difficult for me to prove that he was lying. After all who wouldn’t believe a police officer ? Without my attorney he would throw more lies out there to destroy me. Hard to believe someone would be capable of doing this to the mother of his only child. I now know that no contact is the only way to be safe. Good luck and god bless. Leave it in gods hands. He is a loving god and will do what’s best for you.

Thank you for taking the time to reply Kaya. The way these sociopaths are able to tell outright barefaced lies is just alien to normal honest loving people like ourselves. When my ex tried to push me down the stairs and I called the police out he went around telling people the next day I had attacked him and he had called the police! He told our mediator that he had taken three years off work to be the “sole carer” for our daughter when the truth was he was unemployed and refused to get work for that time whilst I worked long hours to pay for everything. Of course I now realise he was text book and he lied about everything to get what he wanted and to win at any cost. As you say I found it hard to believe he could be capable of doing these things after everything I had done and given up for him. I wish you continued peace. Mav

Aloha, Quinn:

You have again crafted another amazing piece that describes the dysfunction of these disordered characters to a T!

Having read your other very personal and insightful articles regarding your experiences, I also admit to joining the ranks with you and others who have first hand knowledge of the damaging and confusing time wasting tactics of these subhuman types.

I call them subhumans based on the clinical analysis which identifies the very real different physiological attributes that make these subs different from normal empathetic humans.

Having done over 5500 hours of research regarding these types–and many thanks to Donna for putting together such a great website as a resource for us to rally around–I must say that our knowledge is our power and with this power comes great responsibility to share and codify the techniques of those below-the-radar crowd who would rather remain anonymous so they can continue their dirty work.

The way you have broken down the elements of your experience into categories allows us all to focus upon these confusing and scary moments and to also sadly see our own tragic reflections in such similar circumstances.

As the researchers have alluded: these subhumans seem to all be working from the same playbook as though they are in loose cahoots, and we might imagine them all going in for basic training at a central collective for their subhuman ways…

My own experience did thankfully not involve marriage; the subhuman who targeted me once said he would marry me for my money!! Thank you to that cretin for having a rare moment of honesty!!

Due to several clues to the true motivations of the cretin who targeted me, I was able to survive and protect my family with the help of many authorities and laws in place to prevent domestically violent problem creators from running completely rampant, though, like you, I suffered the very same list of pre- and post-split items!

The local police have the kook’s number now and are watching him quite closely as he tries to disparage me all over town. The isolation phase worked out for him for about 6 months until people that I’ve known my entire life finally figured out they’ve been played as fools, too.

What a farce! It’s sad. It’s tragic. It’s such an unbelievable waste of time and energy and LIFE…but, it’s all coming out in the wash on the backside now…

And, due to my very deep devotion to having a great life and being the best person I can be–no matter what tragedy befalls me–I’ve been lucky enough and good enough to look on this horrible nightmare I’ve gone through and actually laugh at the mad stab at nonsense which is this subhuman’s wasted time and wasted life and wasted breath gone so horribly wrong!

I know there’s not just a few people out there in the world who may not know me but are incredibly thankful, too, that I went deep behind the subhuman enemy lines to reveal the truth of the nastiness of this cretin who thought I would make an easy and worthy target. I’m sure I’ve saved them millions of dollars in God-knows-what might have happened.

A vanguard for Truth and Love and Light I will always endeavor to be, though, even if it means that others might cast aspersions on me for a time. I know, in the final analysis, that the Truth will prevail and that subhumans will be exposed for the social predators that they, in fact, are.

God bless you all who read these words and may you be strengthened and empowered to always go the extra mile and do the right thing for yourselves and your family members who may be targets of these subhumans, on whatever level.

In my research, I’ve gained many tools for dealing with the subhuman elements that wander in our midst and in order to make it quite simple, I tell my friends and associates who may wonder about being targets themselves that you must 1) Identify (via the PCL-R is the fastest way) 2) Isolate (corral the subhuman so they are not a big influence in your life) and 3) Get away and stay away… Have no association with them whatsoever, not even for entertainment purposes, because the same pattern of schmooze, hook and then attack will happen, again and again.

Subhumans are terrorists, and the rule is: Never negotiate with terrorists!

Be well, everyone. May you live happy, peaceful and productive lives!

Thank you hinahina – welcome to Lovefraud. “Subhuman” is a good label – they definitely have a few parts missing.

Thanks for all these great comments. I do feel so much better realizing that I am not the only one who was fooled for so Many years. Today my son received an email from his father accusing me to brainwashing his son. To this day this man, or monster, cannot take any responsibility for his actions. Again he must blame me. This is getting so old, my son and I don’t want to hear it anymore. My son says “mom, why don’t he just get it that we don’t want anything to do with him”? How can he have a relationship with his son when all trust is gone because of his lies and betrayals. I often think how can a person like this exist ? I don’t miss him anymore. I even erased all good memories of him . Quinn put in perfect words. I was married to an illusion. Once it breaks you can never , ever put the pieces back together. They will never fit and line up because it was just an illusion. It was never real and honest. I used to be sad that I wasted 20 years of my life with the narcissist. But like someone said before, god wanted me to have this experience to realize that I am worth so much more. I know my son and I will be ok. All my son needs is one strong loving parent who never gives up on life. And that’s me.

As I have mentioned in previous posts, my ex and I have no direct contact with each other. I have custody of our three kids, but they have to see their dad every other weekend, six weeks over the summer etc.
My eldest daughter has remained very attached to her dad, and throughout the separation I have known that the two of them talk 3-6 times a day and texts constantly, 12-20 times a day even on school days. She had her Sr. pictures taken this past weekend and he must have called or texted her 20 times during the 2 hour shoot. He was getting a blow by blow of the pictures being taken. She has made it clear the moment she graduates from high school this spring she is going to move back with her dad.

I bought my son a phone over the summer, because my 17 year old was often out when I tried to talk to the other two during their visits with their dad. Now my ex is doing the same thing of calling and texting him multiple times a day. My son forgot to take the phone to school today and I just checked the texts and my ex was disparaging me to him in some of the texts.

I feel like my hands are tied. The courts will not view this communication as abuse.

But my ex is creepy with the kids. Last summer he was homeless, but he still took the kids over the weekends. He stayed in hotel rooms with one bed and more often than not slept with my then 15-16 year old daughter. The other two got to sleep in either a chair or directly on the floor without even a blanket or pillow. Yuck! I brought that up in a court motion and the judge did not even comment on that portion, other than to say he needed to provide “suitable housing”, when I tried to push he was not providing this he said prove it and take me back to court. Something I did not have the money to do. He has repeatedly spanked out of control the youngest and the courts, child services, mental health counselor and school counselor all did nothing. I tried. Another example is my kids have told me that on July 4th he took them to a party where he allowed my then 16 year old to drink enough moonshine to feel like pucking and my 11 year old to drink enough rum to be tipsy. And I could go on and on.

When i have tried to convince the kids that they do not need to be communicating with their dad so much they say they want to. When I push a little harder they then tell me I am bad mouthing their dad and they are going to tell him I am doing it. Any time they are mad at me, or I try to discipline them in any way one of them call him. When i try a different tact and ask why they think we do not communicate nearly that much when they are with their dad, they tell me it is because they are with me most of the time and they don’t miss me as much. Ironically when they lived with him, I had to get a court order to be allowed to communicate with them period, because he was preventing me from calling even once a day and once a day was all I was allowed by him even when the courts said he was not to prevent me from communicating with them. And I had to call his cell phone, not my daughters and they were never allowed to call me.
I have equated what he is doing especially with our eldest as emotional incest. When I have managed to get her phone to read the texts there is no other word for it. I have read what others have posted about trauma bonding and I can say without a doubt it happened right away with my eldest. She refused to go to the domestic violence shelter with me (she was only concerned about being separated from her school friends at the time). I managed to get her to the parking lot of the shelter, and even a counselor there could not get her inside, so I took her to a friends house, who delivered her back to her dad. She then was promptly snowed in with him for four days without electricity. She has been his lackey every since. I love her dearly, but I have to be very measured around her, because every word I say goes directly to her dad. Then three weeks into leaving he was given custody of the kids and I did not get custody returned for 1 1/2 years. He has been able to trauma bond with all three of the kids quite well.

I would have let my ex have custody of her, but the courts were clear that the three children HAD to stay together. I could not let my ex have custody of the two younger ones, especially given the physical abuse of the youngest.

My 17 year old claims to be miserable living down in this h… hole (Words that sound straight from her dad). But she has a wonderful boyfriend and a whole circle of new friends where we now live. She has after school activities constantly, such that after this weekend it will be 8 more weeks before she gets to spend a weekend with her dad, with activities on both Friday nights and Saturday. I am saying prayers already that during this time somehow the unhealthy over attachment she has with her dad can be broken. But at the same time I can see my ex already has his new sights set on our son. And in some ways I am most worried about him. He is a real people pleaser and the most emotionally sensitive of the kids. Our youngest is really head strong and that is why she gets the abuse.

Any advice on how to handle this situation? I do not have a lawyer any more and there is no way I can afford one. I still owe a huge amount to my old one.

revjanice,
You can’t just give up on disciplining your children.But understand that your children are at that age where they are expressing their independence.Unfortunately,they are abusing the situation between you and their father to try to get things they want.

My mom went through the same thing.My younger siblings chose to stay with my dad so that they could stay in the same school,stay close to their friends,etc.My mom was so heartbroken.It was only later,after they were out of school and becoming young adults that they really began to miss mom again.They were able to enjoy a good relationship with her,and she got to see most of her grandchildren born. Mom passed away almost 3 yrs ago…and I guarantee you,they’re all still very emotional about it!

Can someone help me? I just as of today am dealing with some awful feelings. I want to get some of your feedback for what you think happened here. I met someone recently and suddenly who told me all these wonderful things about me, told me he was deeply in love with me, etc etc. 2,000 emails were exchanged in a short period of time, and many 6 hour conversations across the miles. Then all of a sudden completely out of the blue sent me a message stating that he never had a crush on me or anything close to that. I’m like what an about face! This was completely the opposite from the day before. Thank you. I need objective feedback. I met him on facebook in a group that I am a member of and people on there have been pretty cool (like here). Thanks.

Thedoorisclosed – Welcome to Lovefraud. You’re describing the downside of meeting someone over the Internet. You might want to read a previous Lovefraud article about the Dangers of Online Dating:

http://www.lovefraud.com/2013/04/12/lacking-savvy-senior-advice-online-dating/

I’ve heard from quite a few Lovefraud readers who tell stories like yours. The sad truth is that some sociopaths hook up with people, convince their targets that they love them, and then dump them, breaking their hearts — just for the fun of it! They get a thrill out of manipulating people. It’s really sick, but they go through the whole charade just to entertain themselves.

It sounds like you’ve found one of these types. Don’t expect reasons or an apology – it will be nothing but a lie.

The best thing you can do is have No Contact with the person. No more emails, texts, phone calls. And be prepared – the person may disappear for awhile, and then show up again, apologizing, begging forgiveness. Don’t fall for it. Never communicate with this person ever again.

Quinn,
I really appreciate this article! I even printed it out!I must admit to being nervous as to how my husband is going to react! When I left,he got in his wheelchair and rolled down the hallway,knocking on apt doors and yelling my name,trying to find me! He was always a ‘control freak’ who at the end isolated me.I can ‘see’ him lying on the stand!

RevJanice-

The tendency of emotionally disturbed parents is to create a “golden child” and turn the others into “scapegoats.” Their roles can change as they get wise to him.

Older children will be able to comprehend books that are written on the subject. It might be worthwhile to get a copy of Lianne Leedom’s “Just Like His Father,” so they begin to understand the mentality they are dealing with. Doing what you can to enlighten your children by supplying them with reading can make a difference in their perception.

As if the pain of falling prey to a psychopath wasn’t heart wrenching enough, having a child with a psychopath adds a whole new complication to the problem. And invariably, the courts make the issues even worse.

Also, technology can help prove your points. Even if the judge won’t pay attention to what you catch on video or audio, your children will. And a timid child who is afraid of their father can push a button on a phone in order to record.

The losses we endure at a psychopath’s hand are excruciating. We not only lose the fairy tale we were hooked by, we can also lose our relationships with friends and family that fall prey to lies and deceit, including the gut wrenching loss of our very own children.

I live that loss each and every day. At first I thought I could never breathe again, let alone eat or live a productive life. Understanding what happened and how it affected me and my son has enabled me to accept what I can’t change. That doesn’t mean I don’t try to change it. It simply means that I can understand that I’m swimming upstream and the chances are slim.

The more you and your children understand about the parental interaction of psychopaths, the better equipped they will be to withstand the chaos. Trying to enlighten them by focusing on his behavior is too close to them for them to comprehend and it puts you in the position of appearing to denigrate their father. They need dispassionate information that they can understand and relate to. If they are too young to read about this issue themselves, do the research, get the books, get the articles that you can read/explain to them.

I wish you all the best!
JmS

After a very despondent night, I read this article in the morning. Thank you, Quinn, and to all who contributed. I had nine children with a sociopath and I am exhausted. I finally “banned him” (his words), after seven years of separation, from going to my mother’s house for Sunday dinners and I’m now being punished. Believe me. It is punishment. He doesn’t appreciate the disruption of our family image. How will I endure his campaign to win the grace of every family member plus my mother? They fluctuate, sometimes remembering and often forgetting his blatant irresponsibly and abuse. I can understand this because I was stuck in that quagmire myself. I know how easy it is to get sucked back in.

You have accurately expressed the dilemma, jm_short.

Congratulations on having the strength to leave–to do what you needed to save yourself and your kids. I’m sure it was terrifying and lonely, but as you said–you’re on the right path!

Wow, Quinn. Your account is so close to what happened in my situation. There are a few differences–this time around my husband didn’t cry, etc. (though he did 10 years ago when I almost left him, but didn’t because he promised tearfully to get better. HA!) But he tried to paint a picture that “the marriage just deteriorated”–leaving out his porn addiction, serial embezzlement and tax fraud! Luckily I had discovered evidence of all of the above, which I was not shy in disclosing to those I felt would listen. (I left his family, for example, out of it. They probably wouldn’t listen, plus I just felt if they didn’t know him by now, what was the point? I would just look hurtful.) Because of that, many people stuck with me. But not everyone!! It is amazing that he is able to manipulate some people.
I really relate to your comment that your husband “made good on promises”–to extract revenge basically–that he had made the year before. My husband is currently taking me to court to have his support reduced (and probably will try to stop paying his portion of my son’s HS tuition) because I informed one of his clients that he had embezzled from her. He had threatened to do this, when I wouldn’t sign a non-disclosure clause. (HA! As if!)This was a woman who was an acquaintance of mine–he used ME to victimize her, but is now furious that he was exposed–and basically trying to deprive my son of support. He is going to court to complain that I told on him, and I(!)caused him to lose income! I will let everyone know how that goes…based on history, I am prepared for the worst. But what is amazing is the resolve they have to get revenge, “get even”, etc–with no thought given to the destruction they have perpetrated on others: wives, children, friends, family. It’s WE who have betrayed THEM, in their warped view.
The common denominator in these stories of “Ending the Relationship” with a sociopath is that it so often doesn’t completely end. It is easier to untie knots in a strand of hair, than to disentangle yourself from these manipulative predators.

Oh, and Quinn–re: the family member reaching out to your ex. I believe I can feel some of the pain that must have caused you. I no longer have contact with my (narcissist) mother, as she was speaking to my ex, after all he has done to me (her daughter) and my children (her grandchildren!) Unbelievably hurtful. The feeling of betrayal was overwhelming–I can’t fathom doing something so hurtful to my own child. My MOTHER did not have my back! But once again, indication of the pervasive destruction that is the result of having encountered a sociopath. It sounds like you are a little ahead of me in coping–I hope I can find a little more peace as time goes on. Thank you for helping us navigate this twisted path!

It’s like there is a checklist with these sociopaths. For Example, George Zimmerman. I am appalled at all the people blaming Shelly, the victim. If 8 police offers approached his truck with guns drawn because they didn’t know what he was. ‘Capable Of’
But people are critizing her ?!

Yes! OMG–Zimmerman! I am waiting to see an article on this site about him. (Hope I didn’t miss it!) When I heard his wife say–about a week ago–that since the trial he thinks he is “invincible”, chills went through me. I thought “that is the clincher, for anyone wondering if he did it…” His reckless behavior: speeding, brushes with the law, has been attributed (by some in the media) to “survivors guilt, maybe wanting to be punished.” But I immediately recognized it for what it was–a true sociopath’s monumental grandiosity and perceived invulnerability. And now he’s doing a number on his wife–portraying her as crazy, etc. The amazing part to me is that we have seen so much of him–and his history–right in front of our eyes. How can people STILL be so blind and fooled?! Even some of the talking heads with psych and criminology backgrounds don’t see it for what it is!

They keep bringing up her perjury charge as some type of evidence of her bad character–I could hardly contain myself! She lied to protect HIM–and you know it was because of his manipulations! And now he is scot-free, and she has a record. Textbook Sociopath!

Here’s something kind of hilarious, in a very creepy way: A couple of years ago, right when I was beginning to figure out all the lies, secrets, etc. of my husband’s life, I found a text on his phone from a woman. She referred to him as “Invincible Baby”–LOLOLOL!! I am seriously going to have a t-shirt made someday.

That’s the first thing I thought of when I heard people bring up the fact that she lied. I lied to save my sociopath ex – after he threw my cat off out 6th floor balcony, killing him. Still can’t believe I did that, but I was more afraid of what he would do to me if he were convicted.

Yes, definetely it is always someone else to blame. My soon to be cheating ex husband still blames me for my filing for divorce. To this day he will not accept any responsibility in his actions. In a letter to my 18 year old son he writes that I am a crazy psycho bitch. That is why he discarded me. No mention of the nude photos he exchanged with his co worker, his affair with her, his porn addiction. I am thankful to god that he gave my son the strength to see the truth in his so called father. The truth is nothing but evil and darkness. I hope all of you will stay strong in your battles. I know that at the end we will prevail.

I need suggestions/advice on how to separate from my sociopathic husband without losing everything. My situation is financially grave. I moved 1800 miles away from home last year to fulfill his dream. My family and friends do not like my husband, indeed, his own family and friends have nothing to do with him.

I quit trying to fix him several months ago. I have recently refused to share dialogue with him about anything but the basics, groceries, etc. I am retired and plan to begin volunteer work next week. He, of course, said that it’s okay. However, he has been moody and tried to create logistical problems with my effort.

Any and all help is appreciated. I refuse to stay with him any longer than I absolutely must. Thanks in advance.

Too Old,

As a woman who divorced the man who thought I would never leave him and his “money”, I can tell you that for me there is no dollar amount that makes staying worth the unhappiness.

He told me I was no one when we met. Now I have returned to the “no one” I was previously and would much rather be “no one” than the “someone” he thought being with him made me.

In your situation you have the opportunity to leave and put 1800 miles between the two of you. You have the support of family who will help you get back on your feet.

What I would do is secretly book your flight home, forget the financials and just leave. You have no obligation to give him the heads up on your plan. If you tell him ahead of time it could be dangerous for you.

You can leave and start over. I worked for our business and left having to figure out how to make a living since when I left him I also had to start working outside the home. I started cleaning homes planning on it being temporary. I have been doing this for 7 years now, make a respectable living and work full time.

No dollar amount is worth being miserable. I hope you can find the strength to leave if it’s truly what you feel you need to do.

Best wishes 🙂

Thanks IAfraud. I agree with everything you said. I am very lucky in that I have a place I can work when I return home. I am retired so I do have a modest income. I am sorry that you had to endure, or for anyone that had to endure the cold, calculating anger that appears to lie within these people. It is obvious to me they are damaged beyond the point of no return.

Thanks again. I am very glad you found your comfort zone. 🙂

It sounds like you are getting your ducks in a row, so to speak. I wish you continued luck and vicarious support in your efforts to get away from your sociopath. It’s never easy, but it is SO worth it!

Oh, and please, please, be very careful.

<3

Too Old-

Are you still living in the same country as your family and friends? Would you have a roof you could rely on over your head if the worst happened and he froze all your assets? Instead of volunteer work, can you locate a paying job so that you’ll have some financial stability?

No matter how concerning it is to leave a long term relationship, remaining can mean unending sorrow. Only you can determine what is best for you. All of us who made that choice, however, found the strength and the means to survive. And I don’t think many would argue that we ended up being stronger and happier for it. It’s scary. It’s emotional upheaval. You need to plan carefully and quietly before you make a change.

Wishing you the best!

JmS

Thank you JmS. Yes, I think I can make a good plan and leave within the next few months. My family and friends do live in the US…:-). In fact, they have already suggested helping me, even coming here to get me. My husband recently pushed me…the first time he has been physically abusive. I realize it is because I won’t play his head games anymore. My awareness isn’t going to save me from further abuse though.

I prefer to return home rather than seek employment here. I will be happy to get as far away from this person as possible.

Again, thanks.

Too Old,

I am so sorry for your situation. jmS gave some very good suggestions. I would just add this: with the onset of physical abuse, you may want to leave sooner, rather than later. Or maybe–if you need time to plan your exit–you can just pretend to play the head games a little longer. I only say this if it is a case of self-preservation. I have found it is incredibly easy to fool a sociopath–amazingly, for all of their own lies and manipulations, they rarely see anything coming. It probably has to do with their sense of invincibility.

I hope you can contact a family member soon, so you can get away safely. Because of their lack of caring, empathy, etc., these guys can be a real danger, if they feel you are in the way of something they want, or if you thwart them.

Please take care.

Dear LL Mequon, thanks for your help. For reasons I do not want to put online, I will be stuck here at least 2 more months. I agree with you; he is very easy to fool in most instances. I am an honest person so I do not have to remember my last lie to keep from contradiction.

As you know, living with someone with no morals, personal values, or boundaries is exhausting. I can handle it for a brief amount of time. Hopefully I will be home for Thanksgiving and Christmas!

Thanks again for your help. 🙂

I left my sp by letting him think he shocked me by discarding me. I let this man play with for six years but i researched his behavior in the last two years to make sure he had the personality of a sp, yes he fit the mask. I was so tired of my emotions being manipulated before i can balance them i just said one day im going yo except who is and let him play out this last episode. This time im going to be his sociopath. I let him in he gave me money had sex went shopping called each other three times a day while my female neighbor becoming restless like always when he visits me. You can figure that out. Anyway when i start to notice his calls was changing, thats when i knew the episode have arrived, this time i will discard myself.he started the blame lies and complaints, i told him you are so right i totally agree, that didnt work he switched back to the nice mask,to set me up again. I was too agreeable, but before he can use the mask effectively i put on his sp mask acting just like him and amazing it was to see him loving it becuz his nice mask flew off so fast into his abusive tone and words, obvious he has a new target victim to impress becuz she called me pretending she have the wrong number,she didnt know her sp told me a death was in his family ppl was coming down from georgia, here this woman calling me from a georgia number,where his family is. I text her back with a threat to leave me alone and i also sent 11 text messages informing her about sociopath and who he is.ever since then sp havent call me at all. Before he would call to torment and ask about my neighbors knowing its about the lady next door.now she look lost and cant face me. I beat the sp by not letting him surprise me with his games.i know in his mind he was always the winner because he was never with me inside, but im a winner because i saw it coming so i helped him finish it. I

Hi my first time posting here..actually I just found this site through a domestic violence page on Facebook. .my ex of 10yrs is a sociopath I now know without a doubt. .when I was finally serious about leaving him he burnt our house down killing my 4 dogs…blamed it on a accidental cigarette fire even though he never smoked and despised me smoking. .after much back and forth with the City fire Marshall he finally reopened the case but my ex was never charged because there wasn’t enough concrete evidence only circumstantial. .he lied to me for days after telling me the dogs got out but I found out later from the neighbor he found the dogs bodies stuffed them in trash bags and put them in the trunk of his car while I was there walking around the back of the house looking for them. I wasn’t home at the time because he called me drunk the night and I refused to come home to get insulted and kept awake all night..

Kit – what a terrible story. They are cruel and heartless. I am so sorry for your dogs.

Welcome to Lovefraud. I hope you find some clarity here.

Thank you they were my babies..its been two years since the fire and its still so raw for me. And the fact that he’s still living his life like nothing ever happened kills me! He still emails me from time to time lying and manipulating.. I don’t reply to them but trying to enforce the NC because I still go look at his Facebook page to see what he’s up too. He has me blocked most of the time..this last time I found a bunch of pictures he deleted from my Facebook when he hacked into it right after the fire…I didn’t even know he had a Facebook page because he said he deleted it years ago and the last 4 years of our relationship I didn’t care anyway so didn’t notice. But it was shocking when I first seen it..it was like I never existed in his life..all these different women o n there falling for his good looks and charm..he claimed to rescue my dogs almost like he took on my persona..our houses that I painstakingly decorated was all his doing..he had taken the pictures from my Facebook claiming them as his. I had won portraits of them all and of course he was the one who won them and on and on..of course he was single..not one mention of me like I didn’t exist in that fantasy world he had created…

Wow. It is hard–as a normal person–to realize how evil these spaths are. I am so sorry about your dogs.

When you said “it’s almost like he took on [your] persona” I could really relate. I often would hear my ex spouting my values, opinions, etc. to others. I used to think we shared the same values, etc–but now I understand it was manipulation. He learned–through me–how to appear to be a good, kind husband and father, as well as friend. Ugh. So manipulative. And creepy!

Yes very ceepy…its almost like he wanted to be like me bt doesn’t know how in his own ways so he piggy backed on me. In one f his emails he said he’s glad I’m finally happy because I deserve it because I have done so much good in the world. .too bad he didn’t mean it..it was just manipulation. Of course this was right after telling me I’m insane for thinking he burnt the house down because all of “HIS” stuff was in there. .and that I must have had numerous f*@! Buddies in the same email. Lol

After seeing his page I thought..well I was the dog and he’s was the flea having a circus on my backside…they make medicine for that 😉

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