How to recognize and recover from the sociopaths in your life › Forums › Dealing with sociopaths in court › Divorcing my sociopath
May 2, 2017 at 10:35 pm #40632
Six months ago I was discarded for the last time by my narcissistic husband. It wasn’t the first time; it had happened probably four times before, but only lasting for maybe a month before I’d get that phone call and cave in, running home to my “safe place.” About a year and a half ago my husband talked me into selling our house and retiring to a small town 150 miles away. We’d have animals and land and I wouldn’t have to work. We would sail anytime we wanted and slow down. I was all in. We put the house up for sale. He had me quit my job with no notice (“It doesn’t matter. We’re retiring anyway,” he said). He sold my car (“We only need one if you’re not working. I’ll take us anywhere we need to go,” he said). He had me pack up the whole house by myself (“I can’t help because I’m 67 and you do it so much better anyway,” he said). I had pneumonia due to exhaustion and the heat and working so hard physically. I packed and moved everything to storage by myself anyway. He wanted to play on his computer while I worked 16 hours a day to wind stuff up, open new accounts, pay bills, make arrangements.
He sold the house to the first offer on the first day it was listed for probably $40,000 less than we could have gotten if he hadn’t been in such a hurry. He took me to the title company one afternoon and wanted me to sign over the check for the house to him (in case you’re too busy to come with me,” he said). I refused. Something was wrong, I could feel it. I told him I would make it a priority to come with him to pick up the check. His whole demeanor was different. He was so cold, FURIOUS. The day the title company called I got dressed nicely, we picked up the check and on the way home he stopped at an office complex. It was a lawyer’s office, where he already had the papers drawn up for me to sign, including a waver of service. I became hysterical, angry, petrified, tearful. “Why,” I sobbed. He was ice cold. “Sign it,” he demanded. His attorney just sat there. I was to receive $5000 and my clothes and personal possessions. I had to sign it. I had no choice. That was it.
He called my 21-year-old daughter (who he discarded at 11 years old, three months after we met, because SHE saw right through him) to come 230 miles to “get your mother. She’s crazy and I can’t deal with her.” My daughter confronted him when she got here on a school night, during final exams no less. I was curled up in a ball on the bed crying my heart out and throwing up. He was horrible to her and she slapped his face. He filed a report for “elder abuse,” but she had gotten me in the car before the police came. She is in law school, so ANY legal problems would make it impossible for her to get her license.
HIS lawyer MADE him give me $20,000 because that was the death benefit I received when my older daughter died three months earlier and it was NOT community property. He was absolutely ENRAGED. So, I had a check for $20,000, no car, no job, no home, and I would have to live 230 miles away with my young daughter and her fiance until I could figure out what to do. My husband wanted me immobile and broke and out of town far far away so that I wouldn’t know what hit me and we would be divorced before I could get myself together enough to hire an attorney. He was hoping to give me nothing at all. I couldn’t eat at all and lost 20 pounds in two weeks. I couldn’t sleep. I was filled with fear and anxiety. Why had this happened? We never had a disagreement. He ALWAYS had his way, and I let him. I did exactly as he said! We had a GREAT love life!
I called, I texted, I e-mailed constantly, begging, pleading. He was very taciturn and would give one-sentence replies – usually ugly. I called one day and asked him what he was doing (just really wanting to hear his voice and connect). He said he was going to buy a new washer and dryer for his new place and that if I were “halfway decent” I would give him back $5000 to make up for things that he HAD to buy to make himself comfortable in his new place. (He gets $5000 a month, every month rain or shine, from the government for being a fully disabled vet – what’s his disability? alleged PTSD from 48 years ago!!!)
HE had the only key to the storage unit with all of our belongings in it. I was so desperate that I sent tear-stained paper letters, many pages long, to his new place. He is mostly deaf due to an accident in Vietnam, so I begged him to let me visit just to talk face to face because I knew he couldn’t hear me well over the phone. He said okay and I was so grateful that I cried and was awake all night waiting to go in the morning. I wanted to tell my daughter and her boyfriend, but I knew they would disapprove, so I rented a car and told them that I needed some clothes to get a job and would be back in a day or two. Off I went, driving as fast as I could, crying, trying to figure out WHAT I could say to make it better, fix everything.
He was very haughty when I drove up. He invited me in then sat down at his desk. I knelt on the floor by his feet and begged and pleaded for him to give me a chance, that I wanted him to be happy and I would do whatever he wanted if he just would not abandon me. Finally he said okay, that we would try a reconciliation for one year. I so gratefully agreed. My daughter and her fiance were furious and didn’t speak to me for 11 months.
My husband demanded that I put my $20,000 in his checking account, plus the $20,000 I got from my retirement account at my old job. So, we started December 2016 with $40,000 in the bank. Well, you know what happened… He demanded that I get a new job immediately and put him on my health insurance plan (He’s a 100% disabled veteran who has to use the VA for healthcare if not on my plan). I had a good-paying job at another hospital within two weeks. He stuck a note on our bathroom mirror so that I could see it every morning and would remember that this year was ALL ABOUT HIM!! I was very skittish and tearful and humble for months. I was a fantastic wife. I worked all day, drove 90 minutes home, cooked a great dinner, cleaned house, and gave him a massage every night before bed!! What did he do all day? (it sure wasn’t chores around the house) I don’t know to be honest.
By June I was working 60 hours a week – 20 of which were overtime. My checks were good to begin with, but were doubled with all the overtime. He told me that he needed it for “bills” and put me on an allowance of $50 a week. THOUSANDS of dollars were in the accounts. I saw the online statements! He said (as he always had) that since I was “not good with math” (I’m a college graduate – he is a high school graduate period) he would “manage” our money because he is retired and had the time.
We had a good year. We played. We made plans to do our move to the small town at the end of the apartment lease in November. Meanwhile, he used ALL of the money that we brought in to pay for a new truck, a camper top, a boat, a trailer for the boat, all kinds of sailboat gear and sails, furniture. He feathered his nest very well – over $140,000 gone in eleven months – two adults living in a tiny one-bedroom apartment with no bills.
He filed for divorce again on October 29th of last year (as soon as the money was gone of course). When I came home from work that day he told me I had to leave. This time I was so hurt, but also angry. I had just put my $1900 paycheck in the account two days earlier, but there was only $650 left. “Oh, well,” he said. “It’s MY apartment and I want you out by tomorrow.” I told him I would fight him for financial equity. He laughed in my face, then turned purple with rage. I went to the bedroom and looked around. I was in shock. I had been a perfect wife!! How could this be happening again? I fell asleep crying with a blinding headache.
He came into the bedroom in the middle of the night, lit candles, and wanted to make love (honest to God!!). I thought he HAD CHANGED HIS mind, or maybe it had just been a bad dream. I thought maybe he realized what he would be missing and would call the whole thing off. It was wonderful, gentle, loving. He then rolled over and brought out the divorce papers again and demanded that I sign for $5000 (which he told me he’d have to take a loan to “GIVE” me). Oh, I could have the $650 that was in the account too (“To help you get started.”) I was so upset. His face totally changed. His eyes were cold, but he started to cry about how I was “destroying him.” He hit me and dragged me across the floor (physical violence about once or twice a year on average).
I begged to be allowed to sleep for a bit because I was so wrecked. He fell asleep, peaceful like a baby. I just stared at him while he was sleeping so soundly, crying quietly and looking at his back to me, taking in his smell. I ended up hurriedly leaving at 3:30 a.m. with just a suitcase as I had to be to work at 6:00 a.m. and couldn’t sleep anyway. He woke up, looked at me with a very strange expression, then went back to sleep.
I was scraped and bruised and just bewildered and dazed. I HAD to be at work that day and there was no way I could take any time off.
Thankfully, I had two credit cards that he didn’t know about (and I wasn’t “allowed” to have). I rented a little apartment 25 miles away near work and slowly set myself up. I had to buy every stick of furniture because I got nothing from our house or the apartment we shared – every dish, kettle, sheet – every single thing – $11,000 on my credit. He must have thought I’d be homeless, and I would have been but for those two credit cards. You know what? HE DIDN’T CARE! He wanted that to happen so he could rush through the divorce before I knew what was happening. I hired an attorney (a good one through a referral at work) and we started a divorce counter suit.
A few days later my husband called my work and asked for an old coworker who I had had problems with (from the old hospital that I had worked at). He wanted to use her to spread rumors and generally try to smear my reputation! The day after I had to leave I had written a short note to each of our friends on Facebook to thank them for their friendship and tell them what was really happening – that I truly loved him and to please take good care of him). Yeah, this was a few weeks before Thanksgiving and we had been invited to a fancy Thanksgiving dinner with friends. I had replied that we’d love to go only a few days before, and HE WENT ANYWAY!!
I immediately filed for a restraining order and had him served. We went to court two days before Christmas. I was represented by the district attorney, he by his low-rent attorney. I told the court how he had beat me up on several occasions and had even been arrested two years before. I told how he had raped me more than once and broke my nose twice as well. He was slapped with a two-year restraining order – the most the state of Texas allows – before his attorney could even get out of her chair to dispute. The DA walked me to my car before getting into hers and driving off. I was just about to get into my car when guess who roared up behind me, blocking me from getting out? He was enraged and yelled something at me, shaking his fist, before roaring off again. If I’d had one more second to think I would have taken a picture and he would have been arrested. Darn it!
So far we’ve had mediation ($1500 each for four hours), which was totally worthless because he failed to comply with the Request to Produce all financial records for the eleven years we were married. I never saw him that day, but I could hear his very distinctive voice in the next room. I was shaking and tearful. We go to divorce trial the second week of June. I’m trying to get the bank records of where all that money went. I want it back! It’s all I have.
When he handed me the divorce papers (after making gentle love to me for at least an hour), he admitted that he had lied to me about “reconciliation.” When I was shell-shocked and asked him how he could think that any judge would agree that a couple alone in an apartment went through more than $140,000 in less than eleven months, he said “Baby, that’s the cost of doing business.” Those are pretty much the last words we ever spoke.
I have been NC for six months and a week. The day I had to leave I changed my phone number, closed and opened new bank accounts, and blocked his e-mails and Facebook. I accidentally found a $10,000 “dividend” deposit in his checking account one day when I was looking at MY accounts and noticed that he had not deleted me from our checking account and I could still see it. When I called the asset management company as his wife and asked about where the dividend had come from they hung up on me, saying that I was not a beneficiary, and called him. He immediately closed his account and moved the money. Yes, I could have just taken that money and placed it safely in my checking account, but it was too late before I could get permission from my attorney that that would be okay to do. I should have just done it, but I didn’t want to get in trouble for theft.
Oh well, here I am now – totally gutted emotionally and financially. My nerves are shot and my health is really suffering. BUT I do go to work every day, pay my bills, and try to get along, but I miss him terribly and sob every single day. If he called I’d be in his arms in half an hour – EVEN AFTER EVERYTHING I KNOW!! I just want to go home – to my “safe place” that really was just a lie all along. My heart is shattered. I know you all have felt this way. At night and on the weekends I just cry and sleep. I feel lost completely. I’ll never be able to recover financially. I’ll never be able to retire (I was supposed to get a very nice pension as the wife of a 100% disabled veteran when he died – 17 years older than me). Now what? How do I get over missing him with every breath? He’s a part of every song, every TV show, every sunset, every grocery store run – everything! Everything I see or do he’s there. I still do things only if I think he would approve! How dumb is that? How do you get past these feelings? He controlled my life completely and it’s what I grew accustomed to. The constant anxiety is eating me alive. I want desperately to write him a letter, pour my heart out, and send it to his apartment, but I’m afraid that if I do he’ll try to get a restraining order from ME. My lawyer says not to contact him in any way until the divorce is final. By the way, I was the fifth wife. He married his first wife, divorced, then remarried her. He has two mid-thirties daughters that he hasn’t seen or heard from since they were toddlers (by their choice). He has no friends and no family – at all!! He just turned 68 and his eyesight is going. He has diabetes and is almost completely deaf. He had bladder cancer and an enlarged prostate (surgery on MY insurance coverage). In fact, he demanded that I put him back on my insurance until the divorce is final, but the large hospital that I work for said “no way.”
Anyway, I’ve never actually just sat down and thought about my story until now. Any advice at all would be welcome. I’m really struggling emotionally even though I’ve done the research and know all about NPD. How did this happen? I loved this man with all my heart. I gave him everything I had – even my children (whom he spurned almost immediately even though he said he really wanted a “family” when we got together). I feel utterly abandoned and worthless, ugly, and stupid – very stupid – “done” at 50 years old.
- This topic was modified 2 years ago by myownperson.
May 13, 2017 at 1:41 am #40747
I had a very similar fiancial fraud and exploitation from my former spouse who filed a fraudulent divorce that said we had no kids, and all property he kept in his name, everything, but most bills in mine. When I eventually found out I was livid but also financially trapped… he controlled everything. When the kids and I fled, we left with essentially our clothes, one nightstand, some books, some toys. With the surveillance, he knew we’d likely flee (and likely wanted us too since school kept reporting him for child abuse) and so he deleted every email communication that detailed the fraud divorce (he demanded joint email to “keep me honest”). However one, one sole email, where he admitted the fraud fivorce and was cajolling me that it didn’t matter, marriage was just paper and it was the committment that mattered, and it was only bad because I chose to view it that way and it was up to me to stop being so negative about our relationship because he wanted family.
I showed that letter to the Court after he first testified to Commissioner Ito that I forged his name on the divorce papers and put all the property in his name and that I then stole records divorce filings that he had (but Court had no record of) from the Court records, and at later hearings said it was an “oversight” on his part.
I had proof. But it didn’t matter. My attorney explained it would be a separate proceeding to show fraud, I too might be punished because when I found out I did not report it as fraud against the court (doesn’t matter if your under control of sociopath), it’d take $70k at least to battle it and at the end, even with me getting my property back, it’d be sold off to pay lawyers, court, and I faced possibility of being ordered to pay spousal support to my abuser because he was accustomed to my paying all the bills and paying his extravagent maintenance.
I have two children, one special needs, we lost everything, I get zero support nor child support, and I barely scrape by.
— But I am still here. I still exist. And unlike that pathetic parasite, I didn’t have to exploit and steal to make ends meets, I am the strongest and he’s the lying groveling parasite who couldn’t make it on his own but most exploit women get from day to day.
It doesn’t replace material items nor cash, but we are still here because I, I, make it happen. It’s been a little over a year. I have a roof over our heads, donated furniture from the local church, my beautiful children asleep in actual beds that I made happen, and a satisfaction that I am a survivor. It could have been a fire that took everything, a natural disaster, a war displacement, or, in our cases, a sociopath. But we’re continuing on, surviving, knowing we can’t go back to what is gone because it’s gone, disaster struck and we survived it.
Think as a survivor. Fire came, war came, sociopath came, but YOU survived it.
If you have a local domestic violence center with group therapy, please try it for a few times. Don’t wait for the “right time” because it won’t come. Just go, get up and go, and keep going just like other survivors walking away from disaster. You’ll likely meet one or two with a situation like yours, someone who “gets it”, you’ll talk amd listen, and pretty soon you’re not feeling alone, you start learning how that women or that man who went through it are surviving in your local, tips tricks etc. Everyday, something new is added into your life. It might not be tamgible but it is yours. Wholly yours. And you can learn how to protect yourself and someday teach others how you became a survivor.
May 15, 2017 at 12:55 am #40770
I agree with truthmatters. It is not at all easy to live with a guy who does all this to you. You have to be strong and take a bold step to get yourself out from all this. If possible consult a lawyer once. They are the once who have all the knowledge of regarding the laws of the state and you may use this against him. Lawyers and their additional info may help you out a a lot and will also reduce your metal stress. BE STRONG!
October 12, 2017 at 2:53 am #42533
Yes stay strong and be positive.
October 27, 2017 at 1:24 am #42707
Of course it is better to stay away from such people and live independent. Stay happy
October 27, 2017 at 12:40 pm #42709
I love your username. Your story reminds me of a Stephen King horror story I once read, only yours is a real-life horror story. I’m so sorry you are going through this. I don’t have much to add to truthmatters’ reply except that there is a pre-paid legal service called ARAG that costs about $17 a month. For this cost, they will not only give you unlimited legal advice but they will go to court for you, file papers for you, represent you, and do anything a paid attorney would do – at no charge to you besides the monthly fee. The only thing you pay for are court costs, such as fees for filing papers, etc. It’s worth a shot if you need an attorney and cannot afford one. I hope you do get an attorney at some point, but for now, please just vow to stay away from your highly dangerous ex and stay safe, even if you have to go to a domestic violence shelter. Do seek resources for freeing yourself from a monster like him. Eventually, you might want to consider legal recourse.
You might also discuss with an attorney if the army (or whatever branch of the military he was in) would like to know that he is using his pension to defraud you. It’s a long shot, but perhaps yours will not be the first complaint. The sociopath I dated was an ex-Iraqi vet, too. He was faking symptoms to try and get a lifetime pension too. He faked these symptoms for number of YEARS, very patiently waiting for the pay-off. Instead, he was found guilty of malingering (medical fraud) and adultery (because he was involved with me while lying about his existing marriage). It wouldn’t surprise me if his decision to enlist in the first place was to defraud the army! It can be very tricky to out a military vet, because vets have an esteemed place in our society. But your ex definitely sounds to me like he is a classic sociopath who has made an entire career out of fraud.
You gave this man a lot of power over the years, you ignored a lot of red flags, and you made a lot of bad decisions because of your addiction to him. But now you know the truth and you see what he is. Now it is time for you to take your power back. It’s never too late to put yourself first and start making good decisions. Remember, Tina Turner walked away from her abuser with nothing but her name. You may not be Tina, but you CAN rebuild your life and reinvent yourself. And you don’t need a ton of money to do it. Don’t let him win! Please, please don’t ever let him back into your life! I think you know where that road will lead you.
October 27, 2017 at 12:45 pm #42710
I want to add that I am in no way blaming you – the victim – for being defrauded by a clever sociopath. This is what they do, and it’s what their entire lives are about. They are very very good at it.
March 24, 2018 at 6:23 am #44773
It is better to get away from such a partner
October 25, 2018 at 8:58 am #47368
October 27, 2018 at 3:11 pm #47376
It is interesting that this is the name you have chosen to represent you: My Own Person.
Your story represents a different name: I am Not Myself.
This is because you have suffered the abuse and brainwashing of a personality disordered person. And by suffering this repeated cruelty and trauma you have ceased to be your own person. You are merely who he wants you to be, and no longer yourself.
It is telling that you have called yourself Myownperson, and reveals that you know what you need to be again. That you need to reclaim your life, stop his abuse and lies, and re-engage in reality.
What he has to offer is a fantasy. A fantasy of husband, parent, lover. He is, obviously, none of those things. Everything you write confirms he is not. Everything you write confirms that these are the fantasies and promises he provides you to make you who he wants you to be: devoted, longing, devastated, long-suffering, totally focused on him and his needs, nothing without him.
See the theme? HIM HIM HIM HIM HIM HIM. There is NO ROOM for you, or anyone. None.
Please, start talking back to the person he has turned you into. Tell her that she doesn’t know what love is, if she thinks he is the love of her life. Tell her that she is letting herself be betrayed and humiliated, for an hour of tender love making. Tell her you want to live in the real world, with caring friends: in peace. Tell her she has been fooled, over and over again, and that YOU are going to help her STOP the madness, and start to heal. That YOU can provide her with a better life, full of promise and kindness.
She is a one dimensional prop, the other side of ‘his coin’, that compliments his mental illness. YOU are not. You are real. Take back your realness.
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