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Looking for some validation on relationship I was in for years with a predator?

How to recognize and recover from sociopaths, psychopaths, narcissists and other exploiters Forums Lovefraud Community Forum – General Looking for some validation on relationship I was in for years with a predator?

This topic contains 4 replies, has 5 voices, and was last updated by  valeria1993 3 weeks, 5 days ago.

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  • #47590

    predatorfree
    Participant

    It has been a year and half since I was cruelly left by a predator I was with for six years, from the ages eighteen to twenty four. He ended it casually over text, blaming me for not being loving enough. I then realized after a few weeks he was already calling someone else his girlfriend, when I was completely perplexed and asked him about this, he said he could not speak to me out of respect for her, it was a laughable excuse, considering I put up with nothing but disrespect for years, while he casually made out it was normal to speak to his ex, someone he was with from sixteen. Whenever I had a problem with it, I was called controlling, crazy, and jealous. This happened with many other women he would spend time with alone, calling them female friends, when my gut was firing out warning signals to me, he said it was because I was an extremely controlling, jealous person, if I did not allow him to do what he wanted which he made out to be “normal”, I would ruin the relationship. He also said I had no right to say it wasn’t normal, since I didn’t go out much or have friends so I had no idea of what was normal, he made me out to be the disturbed person. I put up with it, because I was so afraid of losing him, I put everything into that relationship and was not willing to walk away.

    Even in the final year of the relationship when I went to see a counselor, he was deeply offended and said I must not trust him enough to speak to him about any problems I had. I think he knew at that point the game was going to be up very soon. I was still none the wiser, when the counselor told me I was in an abusive relationship, I blamed myself thinking I must be exaggerating the way things are, that it really is not that bad. I told him he was abusive, to which he said how unfair it is because I was not taking my behavior into account, he played the victim and brought up situations I was embarrassed by, when I acted way out of character and said how terribly I treated him. He would even say how he brought this up with his “female friend”, who feels terrible for him, how abused he is, he got all these friends of his to back up his story. One of them even took me aside to tell me how they wouldn’t allow their friend to be mistreated by me. I was so humiliated, and asked him why he told his friends these things, he told me if I wanted him to stop, then I need to treat him well, which clearly meant adoring him at all times, never questioning anything, never being “jealous”, and going along with the status quo.

    Deep down I knew the only reason I blew up was because I was silenced for months on end, not allowed to express myself with these other women he triangulated me with, when I was deeply hurt, he would see him smirking about it, my anger would sometimes get the best of me, I would explode, shouting how dare you treat me like this, calling him all sort of names. I can now see it was a trap set for me to fall into, but at the time I felt truly disgusted with my behavior, and was ashamed of myself. He used these outbursts I had to get me under control again, and brought them up whenever I was questioning things. I would feel so ashamed that I would stop communicating with him about his behavior, and pretend to be happy at all times. If I wasn’t happy or had a problem, I was ruining the relationship. Basically everything was always my fault, he made it clear the way to make it better was to express how much I loved him, show my love by doing nice things for him, being gentle with him etc…whenever I would bring up how to fix something, he would always say “up to you”.

    He had this superior attitude where he made out that everything he did was correct and that I needed to follow his lead, to be happy as well. I told him I was spending time with a male friend, which was made up, I wanted to show him that I was “normal”. He didn’t believe me at first, and then when he wasn’t sure he told me how men only want one thing from me which is sex. I said how it wasn’t true. He said I had nothing else to offer, no knowledge to share with them, nothing, all I was good for was sex. I said is that why you are with me then, he said, no that he was with me because he knew what a kind person I was. I told him well is that not the same with you then with women, he said it is different because he has all these things he has knowledge about, music, science, that he is a very interesting person. He said once I become a more interesting person, men will want more from me than sex. He said he was doing this to help me grow, because the way I was wasn’t interesting enough for a man to spend time with me, other than wanting sex. I would spend weeks questioning these things he told me, wondering if they are true. They really got to me. Looking back it seems he was trying to program me? I still don’t know why he was making me feel paranoid, maybe to isolate me?

    He used to get a giant satisfaction and thrill out of telling me inappropriate things that would happen with him and other women, to make me uncomfortable. This was almost on a constant basis. He would say this attractive woman in college keeps staring at him, talk about how beautiful she is, show me her facebook photos, to make me feel threatened. He would say things like so she wore this really low cut top today, and kept looking over at me, I definitely think she likes me. He would be talking to some girl on a dating app, when I was shocked and disgusted, he made out it was no big deal and then showed me these naked photos she sent him, talking about how attractive she is. I said that is cheating, he said he was never going to meet her without me, I said I had no interest. I believe he stopped talking to her but who knows. He would be going on a night out and tell me he was just going to lightly flirt with women, nothing too heavy. I was shocked, but he told me he was being honest. When I said what exactly does light flirting mean, he told me someone sitting on his lap, touching him, but that he wouldn’t allow any women to kiss him. I said that is not acceptable, he told me he would end up cheating if I did not allow him to have this type of fun. He would then tell me he didn’t flirt with anyone, and be annoyed by it. Then of course there was the female friend, who he met in a coffee shop, who he was seeing so often, more than me, because he felt so bad for her, because she had to leave her daughter behind, to come here, and he was trying to help her. He would then subtly tell me, how she puts her hand on his knee, she exposed her underwear to him, asked him into her bedroom, but he said how good he was because he never gave into her seduction, which ended up being a lie, apparently I was meant to appreciate how I was the “chosen” one, when all these women were wanting to be with him, he acted like he was some sex god, but he was resisting all of them because he was loyal to me. When I asked him to stop all this, he told me come on I am a man, you need to get real, and realize this is what men do. These things happened in the later half of the relationship.

    I was addicted to being on this pedestal he put me on. He made everything a competition, and it was obvious I had to compete with all these other women in order to keep him. He even said that if he cheated it was all my fault, because I wasn’t keeping on top of my game. Looks were extremely important to him. He told me when I cut my hair short, I looked like a witch, not to do it again. I would always dress in ways where he would compliment me, so I would have my hair long, minimal makeup, if I had a lot he would give me a huge lecture about how makeup is bad for my skin. Towards the end of the relationship, he brought me out to dinner, to see if I was good enough to get back with, I was actually desperate to be with him again at that point. He called me and told me to dress classy, not too much makeup, to keep my hair down. He then mocked how I used to dress when I was a teenager and said so no orange face, fake eyelashes, and heels you can’t walk in, I don’t want to be with someone who looks cheap, look expensive. I had so much anxiety because I wanted to fit his image, and knew if I didn’t he would mock me or reject me. He would always look me up and down, and comment on what I was wearing. His approval meant everything to me at the time. If he approved, I felt good about myself, if he didn’t I felt I was not good enough. I gave over all my power to him, everything was about his approval. He wanted me to know that he would always be smarter than me, he would always have better fashion sense, and always be the superior one, that I could never get on his level, but that doesn’t mean I don’t stop trying. He never wanted my approval for anything, he was above that.

    I hope some people can relate to my story. I am so ashamed that I put up with this, and allowed myself to be treated in such a terrible way, that I allowed him to hurt me so much and fell for all the warped excuses he made, wanting to believe he never wanted to hurt me, when in hindsight there is no other explanation. All along it was one huge exciting game to play with my life and emotions, making me feel extremely self conscious, making me believe that my judgement, my emotions were all wrong. Making me believe that he was this victim, because his father left him at an early age. If all the excuses failed, he would go to the that one, how lonely he is because he has no family, just his mother, since his father left him. A lot of times that did work on me because I felt terrible for him, and would forgive him. Later on when I didn’t take this excuse he said how I was pure evil, that I had no heart, and act the victim. I would later have to apologize to him for this if I wanted to be with him again, which I usually did. He would then act as if nothing happened, we would go out, things would seem to be working out well, and within a few weeks the games would begin, with other women and what not. This was a constant cycle, until it ended.

    What sort of disorder is this exactly? I have read and looked into narcissism, sociopaths, and psychopaths, he does seem to fit the psychopath one with narcissism? I know the important thing is to heal myself, but putting a label on him would help me dissociate from all the madness, so at least I know exactly what I was dealing with, instead of always trying to figure out which one he is. If anyone has an idea from the scenarios I mentioned, please let me know. I know I am lucky that he left me for someone else in the end, because I think I would have kept on being in denial and going through all those terrible cycles for many more years if not forever, I was completely at this persons mercy. I still get flashbacks almost daily of his predator stare with a smirk he used to look at me with sometimes, it is disturbing. I want to get to a point where I actually feel lucky, not just think it. I have been numb for a long time now, I recognize what I have been through is not normal, but it is very difficult for me to register it, it feels like it didn’t happen to me, I know the person who went through it was me and I did feel either elated or worthless most of the time, but when I think about what I went through, I don’t feel it, it is like I am looking at someone identical to me but from above, what is this? If anyone has any tips on healing that would be great, I am going to see a counselor, but because of financial issues, I can’t afford to see a specialist in the area of trauma or abuse, so will have to hope the low cost counselor will have experience in that area. I am just posting this for enlightenment on what I went through, so that I begin to register it, and get some validation.

    • This topic was modified 3 weeks, 6 days ago by  predatorfree.
  • #47592

    slimone
    Participant

    Predatorfree,

    You have given a very clear description of someone with a disordered personality, who is abusive, narcissistic, and deceptive. Someone who enjoys making you believe bad things about yourself, in order to maintain the upper hand.

    But there is honestly no exact, and agreed upon, disorder to label him with. He sounds like he is fairly high on the ‘spectrum’ of narcissism. I think it is a fair to say that the higher someone is on this spectrum, the more abusive or dangerous they become. But the names that we label them by are not used by everyone. Like I said, experts don’t agree yet.

  • #47597

    Donna Andersen
    Keymaster

    Predatorfree – Welcome to Lovefraud, although I am sorry for the experience that brought you here.

    This guy only wanted power and control over you. I think if he were evaluated by a knowledgeable counselor, he would probably turn out to be either antisocial or psychopathic. People with those disorders only want power, control and sex. Sounds like him.

    Please do not be hard on yourself. You met him while young. You had no idea what you were dealing with. Now I recommend that you take time to recover from the experience. Do not try to date again until you feel like you have processed all the negative emotions related to what he did to you.

    If you go to a counselor and he or she doesn’t seem to understand what happened to you, move on to another one. Lovefraud’s research shows that about 50% of therapists really do not understand the dynamics of relationships with psychopaths or antisocials.

    We do have some webinars that may help you. They’re inexpensive, and we’ll soon be running a promotion for the holidays.

  • #47601

    proudlioness
    Participant

    PredatorFree..

    wow..what can I say? The deja vu that washed over me upon reading this was both painful and telling..much of what you explained occured during your relationship also happened during my marriage..

    I don’t know of infidelity..but all the stories I was told tried to convince me that everywhere he went women were just so drawn to him that they didn’t ever care if he was married..this happened every week!

    he is 14 years older than me, but still had long thick silver hair and dresses young in camouflage clothes and works out…and loves attention and adoration..and is super outgoing..

    one woman at church told him it must be so hard to be married to a woman like me! (because he tells them I’m jealous…and he is “just being friendly”..

    sound familiar?

    When we first met 10 years ago I lost 30 pounds and he dressed me as he wanted ..it could be embarrassing!

    He never hesitates to point out the face and figure of an attractive women and even points!Loves to look at teenagers and sometimes says he wishes he knew me when I was at my hottest…

    He is at the age (81) of being impotent and I actually have my late husband’s pension and SS and bring in more money than him…but the women in this hick town don’t know all this and are awed by him..

    Narcissists never change and grow old like that I guess…depressing isn’t it?

    You did the right thing!

  • #47603

    valeria1993
    Participant

    Alright I made an account just to reply to this.

    I’ve been out of the abusive cycle for a few years now but this triggered a lot of memories for me. I can feel and relate greatly to your pain. A lot of us have gone through the exact same dance you’ve described. The triangulation, the controlling, the gaslighting, the being called needy/insecure as a method of control. You are far from alone in your experiences.

    First off: try your hardest to not be too hard on yourself. This is going to be a long road and you need to be gentle with yourself.

    Second: Be careful in therapy. Not everyone understands these dynamics. If you intuitively don’t feel comfortable with your therapist, move onto the next. Finding a good therapist may take a few tries.

    Third: None of this is your fault. You were young for crying out loud, how could you have known?

    This road is going to be long and bumpy. It is very akin to taking two steps forward, one step back. You will struggle. This does not mean you are weak, it means you are progressing.

    It wont always feel this bad. The pain starts to fade. You will have both good days and bad days, at the beginning it will be mostly bad. Accept this and dont fight it. Just power through the worst days. They will pass. eventually, you will start discovering joy again and the good days will increase until they start to outnumber the bad ones. This is a journey, you need to be patient. Do not try to rush it, or be mad at yourself when you find yourself still not 100% over it. Keep your perspective on progress. Little by little you will heal.

    You will grow stronger than you ever imagined yourself to be. When you finally come out on the other side, you will have learned so much and look back in gratitude at the wealth of lessons you will carry with you for the rest of your life by virtue of this experience. This pain is temporary. The strength and lessons you acquire will be forever! You have been granted a new lease of life, I am sure it doesnt feel like it right now, but eventually you will see it.

    This pain today is shaping the strength you’ll need for tomorrow. It is NOT in vain. You will realize all of this in time, I promise!!

    The day you will start to genuine believe you are lucky WILL come, but you need to have faith it will come in its own time and try not to force yourself right now. Accept how you feel right now and just ride through the wave. It will pass. I promise you. In the most unbearable of days, when it feels that itll never end, just remember me here saying it will pass!

    I highly recommend you get the book PsychopathFree too and check out their website along with this one, it was the game changer for me that propelled me from victim to kick ass survivor.

    I wish you the best of luck! You’ll get through this.

    • This reply was modified 3 weeks, 5 days ago by  valeria1993.

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