February 2, 2021 at 11:45 am #65029mtnpeak3Participant
I don’t even know where to begin. Sorry this is so long.
I am feeling very confused about the relationship that I just ended a few days ago, and the only thing that makes any sense of the “spell that I was put under” these 5 months of being together, is that he has some type of personality disorder? I’m hoping someone will be able to relate to my experience here and give me some advice as to whether he is sociopathic or something else was going on? In the aftermath of the relationship I am just completely baffled, scared for my safety and questioning my self-esteem. He has many of the traits that I found listed for sociopaths, but then seems to have a lot of empathy in other ways, but maybe that was all just a facade as well?
We met online during the pandemic, so I was feeling lonely in general, and dreaming about having a companion during this time. I am also not exactly young and have been in a few longterm relationships that ended, and was feeling ready to meet my person that I could build a life with. He was very cute, charming, had a good job, but most impressively seemed to have so many of the same interests and perspectives that I do. In retrospect I think he was actually just highly skilled at “mirroring” which is so creepy. (All the common interests that we shared he knew a lot about, but I started to realize a few months in didn’t actually really do them.)
We only texted a little bit, and met up pretty quickly in person. I was immediately attracted to him, he is cute in a kind of nerdy disarming way, not extremely conventionally attractive. He was very friendly and outgoing and I immediately felt at ease with him. We had very similar backgrounds, interests and dreams about the future. By the fourth date I was very excited about this guy, but he completely surprised me by asking if I wanted to make things official and be in a relationship. I was excited that he knew what he wanted and said yes. At the time I felt like this was a positive sign that we both knew what we wanted and there were no games being played. From the start of our “relationship” he would text me multiple times a day very poetic things about how beautiful and amazing I am or how lucky he was to be with me. At the time I felt like “finally, a guy who can express his feelings!” and felt very valued and charmed. In retrospect his behavior was classic “love bombing” and so creepy now that I see it for what it is. He very quickly told me that he loved me also.
Over the next month or two, in continuing to share our hopes and dreams for the future I asked him about kids, and he told me that he had always wanted to be a father. I have never felt strongly about having kids either way, but always felt like if I met the right person I would be open to it. 2 months into our relationship we decided that we knew we wanted to be together, and because of our age wanted to start trying to have a baby. In retrospect I know this is totally crazy, and a decision I would normally would never make!! I’m still trying to figure out what I was thinking and am embarrassed by the certainty I had that is was a good idea. It’s hard to explain, but it just felt totally right and like this person was my soulmate – unlike anyone I had ever met before or any relationship I had been in. He was very good at communicating his feelings and seemed very empathic to mine as well. I was so impressed by his vulnerability and ability to communicate I felt like the luckiest woman alive. I got pregnant the first time we tried, which was a huge shock and I was feeling a little unsure if this was something that we could handle, but he was so sure and excited about it that I slowly started to get on board and just trust that this was a blessing and meant to be.
Once I was pregnant and decided to keep the baby little things about his personality and things that he told me about his life began to unravel. Small lies that were more like withholding all the facts from a story rather than flat out lying. For example he told me that he moved back to our current city to take care of his parents, which was one of the things that attracted me to him, but then found out that he actually had been fired from his job in another state for yelling at his boss and basically had to move back to his hometown to start over. I met his family a few times, and in observing his interaction with them he was never helpful or even especially kind when we went to see them. It actually seemed more like they were taking care of him.
He also mislead me about his finances. He presented himself as working in a high-paying industry and wanting to buy a house soon. I love my career and own my home and was excited to meet someone who I felt like was on my level. Initially he didn’t want me to come over to his apartment because he had a pet who could be stressed around new people. I was fine with this for the first month, but then started to become concerned. He finally let me come over, and to my horror he was living in very poor conditions in a run-down almost condemnable apartment with no furniture. He assured me it was just temporary.
Once I was pregnant we decided that my house was too small for 3 people and he told me he was going to buy us a bigger house, and I could rent mine out for income. That his apartment was just a temporary bachelor situation that he didn’t “care much about material things” which is why he was fine living the way he had been. His living condition was a huge red flag, but I just chose to ignore it and focus on him promising he was ready to buy a home. I then found out his salary and how much he had saved, and it was very low and I knew it was not enough to buy any type of property in our city. I still don’t know if he was deluding himself or trying to manipulate me into thinking he was more well off than he was and planning on living off of me the whole time.
His behavior started to change once I got pregnant also. I was able to overlook some of the inconsistencies about this career and finances because he was so emotionally supportive and loving, and I told myself that was all that really mattered to me in a relationship anyways. But then the empathetic and kind man I though I knew started to have very angry and manic outbursts if I confronted him about anything. He said some of the most horrible things that anyone has ever said to me, and then seemed to not remember them afterwards.
He started accusing me of being an abusive and toxic person (let’s be real I was in my 1st trimester and hormonal but not an abuser by any stretch of the imagination!) If we had a conflict he would escalate it very quickly and then stonewall me for up to a day after. He told me that he had disclosed what was going on in our relationship to his friends and that they all told him he was in an abusive relationship. He had started spreading rumors that I was abusive and mentally-ill. He actually called me a psychopath which I think might have been projection? I now recognize that this was just like the other “smear campaigns” that I have read about.
After the last very nasty interaction with him and learning about his finances I saw that I had made a terrible mistake and needed to get away from this person. I ended the relationship and have decided to end the pregnancy for my safety and also out of fear that whatever my ex is dealing with mentally could also be genetic.
I have initiated no contact but he continues to try and has told me things like I am a sick person and he’s just trying to get me help. I am not. He has told me that I am not a whole person and other very belittling things trying to affect my self-esteem. I know that they aren’t true and it feels very manipulative. I am going to send him a final email again today to clarify that the relationship is completely over one last time and that he will never hear from me again.
I am just so confused by my behavior and decision to jump into this relationship so quickly with someone I hardly knew. Is this common with sociopathic personalities to be able to almost brainwash you?
He was never physically violent, and actually seems to care about animals and vulnerable population a lot to the extent he worked for non-profits for a long time – although he no longer does after being fired from that job – he now works in corporate. This is the part that doesn’t totally align with what I’ve read about sociopathic people and confuses me.
The last piece of the puzzle was that he did disclose early in the relationship that he was diagnosed with bi-polar and that it was managed with medication. I respected that he had overcome a mental health obstacle, but now I think it is much more pathological than I initially understood. He even said at one point that he thought he might be borderline personality instead of bi-polar, but not knowing much about either diagnosis, and not seeing any red flags yet, I didn’t worry too much about it. I am very openminded and respect the different journeys and struggles people have been though. In retrospect I cannot believe I let this person who disclosed serious mental illness, convince me to get pregnant, try and isolate me family and try and trap me the way he did!!
What just happened to me?!? I don’t even recognize myself anymore and we were only together for 5 months. Right now I am just completely focused on my well-being and my upcoming procedure to end the pregnancy and healing from that emotionally and physically. I do not miss him or have any reservations about ending it, but am worried that he will become obsessed with me and/or continue to spread rumors around our very small city that I am abusive and mentally ill. I fear that although I have ended it, the terror is not over yet.
February 2, 2021 at 3:05 pm #65030Jan7Participant
Hi Mtnpeak3, I’m so sorry that you got caught in this manipulative guys web of lies.
YES!! He sounds like a sociopath or at least has a very dangerous personality disorder.
As hard as it was to end your relationship & pregnancy it was the right thing to do. All of your reasons for terminating your pregancy are very sound and reasonable. I have read many post from others that made this same decision. It’s not an easy decision but, you have no ties to this disordered individual or like you stated that the child could end up with the same personality disorder.
What this guy was doing calling you disordred & the long list of abusive terms is called GAS LIGHTING ABUSE (do a search here on Lovefraud for this term). This is a very stealth form of emotional & mental abuse. Look up “Gas lighting movie”…and see Wiki it’s about a woman who’s news husband conviences here that she is sick…when she is not. Very dangerous to your mindset.
KNOW THAT ALL SOCIOPATHS USE GAS LIGHTING ABUSE!! RED FLAG
Lots of what you wrote my ex h did the same behavior with the exception of wanting a baby. But, evrything my ex said was a lie or 90% lie mixed in with a little truth. Which is common with these evil manipulative guys.
Best thing to do is just go NO CONTACT with this guy…you never get closure with them sending a letter to him does no go…it just ignites the fire for them to keep trying to win you back & abuse you more.
LOOK UP here on LF & net:
GAS LIGHTING ABUSE
socioapth Blame shift
congnative dissonance (holding two different belief systems ie he’s good/he’s bad but the truth is he is all bad)
Look up here on love fraud & net
Sociopath hypnosis and Sociopath trance….this is what they do…this is why you felt like you were under his “Spell”..
They also literally brain washing & put their victims under mind control EXACTLY like a Cult leader (because cult leaders are socioapths/psychopaths does not matter if they have 1 million followers or one follower they use the same brain washing & mind control techniques)
Keep reading everything here on Lovefraud to open your mind up. Donna & Terry have created a library full of valuable articles that educate yourself.
Also, YOUR GUT IS SCREAMING THIS GUY IS A SOCIOPATH…how do I know this? Because you searched for answers and it lead you to this amazing site.
Keep your guard up with this guy.If you go to home deport or lowes *USA hardward stores…you can find door & window alarms that use battery vs hardwire starting at $15 and whole home systems that use battery for $100.
You should think about having your door lock changes because no doubt he had access to your key chain and could have made a key (most likely not but you never know and it will give you some peace of mind. Tell your trusted neighbors that if they see him near your home to call the police. And you do the same. DO NOT CONFRONT HIM IF HE COMES TO YOUR HOME justcall the police and let them handle him
I’m sorry that you endured this nightmare. So glad that you start to reserach and found this incredible site and support page.
Keep asking questions, read read read everything here & also vent. It’s all part of the healing process.
Take care of your health the stress fro these evil individual is off the chart. Look up symptoms of Adrenal fatigue…most victims suffer from this. ie PTSD. Look up dr lam. com and Adrenal fatigue. org they have a good symptoms list and good info.
look up at the top for “book store” Donna has her books there that are excellent for education.
Wishing you all the best. Take care.
- This reply was modified 8 months, 3 weeks ago by Jan7.
February 2, 2021 at 3:09 pm #65031Jan7Participant
ps yes, he was using “sociopath smear campgain against you & his friends
also, using “socioapath triangulation
both to destroy the true victim so that the sociopath is not exposed. If you see his friends tellt them the truth and then let them figure out they have been doped by him.
My ex did the same. I could never understood why people were so rude to me…I never had a problem making friends before my ex h but during our marriage it was odd that so many were cold toward me = he was spreading a smear campaign and using triangulation to keep us all from figuring out that he was an evil con man sociopath.
February 2, 2021 at 6:22 pm #65033
I’m so sorry for what you have experienced in the past 5 months, yet glad you have found this forum. There is so much valuable information here and everyone understands your pain because we all share very similar scenarios with sociopaths/ narcissists. In fact it is pretty creepy to think there are that many disordered persons out there waiting to prey on unknowing victims.
My relationship with my N spanned over 7 years- during that time we would be off and on at various times. He always seemed to win me back with his charm until recently. Although we met in my city he actually lived two states away so we had a long distance relationship. All of the signs you saw were so similar to mine. My N would lie by omission not always telling me the whole story. He also used a lot of “word-salad” which always confused me yet was very deliberate on his part.
The same endearing qualities you describe about being vulnerable, able to talk about emotions, etc. was what kept me transfixed and kept me from leaving. To this day it’s what I miss most, yet I feel he was only mirroring me.
I am now only three months of NC which I initiated, yet learning everything you can about disordered personalities will help you make sense of the fog you have come out of. It is both brain washing and an addiction. Yes, they are that good at manipulating us. My N purposely took me to his run down apartment just to test my reaction. I’m sure he felt if I accepted that he could put anything Out there and I’d be okay with it, which is called managing down our expectations. There were always bigger and better things on his horizon, or so he said. None of them ever materialized. As my close friend told me, “he is unstable, he brings you up and then let’s you down and he has proven he cannot move the relationship forward.” Good and very accurate advice.
You are very brave and are making sound decisions that are in your best interest. Keep taking care of you, keep your guard up and make sure you take measures to insure your safety. No matter what lies and rumors he spreads smart people will know the truth based on your integrity. He can fool some of the people some of the time, but he cannot fool all of the people all of the time.
Sending you all my best as you navigate this challenging journey. You have already done much of your homework on the disordered personality and are spot on with what you are reflecting on. Continue to read more on these personalities, post and vent and most importantly take care of you! Remember it is not your fault. We have all asked the question, “what just happened to me?” Being in the population of “normal” people we never heard of these disordered personalities or knew people like them existed.
Stay strong and focus on you. No contact is the only answer!
February 2, 2021 at 6:26 pm #65034sept4Participant
Hi mountain, I’m so sorry about your horrible experience. Yes everything you wrote is consistent with sociopathy. Mirroring, love bombing, moving the relationship forward too fast, lying, using you for finances, emotional abuse, projecting his personality disorders on you etc.
He is an evil person and I’m so sorry you had to go through this. Don’t blame yourself because these type of people are excellent con men and can manipulate and fool most people. Especially if you are a kind loving empathic open minded person, you will be their ideal target. It is not your fault.
As to ending the pregnancy, I am so sorry to hear that. Are you sure? Would you be able to wait longer so you are not making that decision out of distress? I hope you will change your mind but of course it is your decision to make.
Wishing you strength in moving forward.
February 2, 2021 at 8:19 pm #65035
mtnpeak- If you read my post on “Putting the pieces together after the fog lifts” you will find a number of red flags that I dismissed. Of course they came in bits and pieces so it was easier for me to try to be understanding as he charmed his way into my heart.
He painted a wonderful picture of us living together (in my house of course) and talked about his government settlement coming soon. This supposedly was for his PTSD during his time of military service. Of course he said the government moves at their own pace so it was always “just around the corner.” With that he told me he would buy me a brand new vehicle all decked out and all I had to do was choose the color. When I let that comment pass without any acknowledgement he went out of his way asking if I heard what he said. Material things were not important to me and I told him it’s just about him not about the glitz and glam he was trying to impress me with. I truly feel they are very insecure about themselves so they amp up the conversation with all the things they will do for us – it’s called future projecting.
Again, if you look at all of my red flags you will see how similar these preying sociopaths are. Here’s another thought though- if you flip the coin it also means there are as many warm, caring, empathetic, open minded,non-judgmental people like us out there that would be an excellent partner for someone with integrity and character. There is hope!
February 3, 2021 at 12:31 am #65039thesmithsParticipant
I am very sorry this happened to you. Unfortunately, he sounds like he has a personality disorder. I met my sociopathic ex-husband when I moved to a new city and was lonely. His kind personality changed into an abusive one after the wedding. It’s not your fault. It happens to many people.
First, keep yourself safe and away from him. Cut off all communications – do not speak, email or text. Change your phone number and delete the email address you gave him. You want to give him no attention whatsoever.
There’s a great book by Gavin de Becker called The Gift of Fear about how to deal with disordered people. I found it invaluable after my break up.
I hope that you check in here to let us know how you’re doing.
February 3, 2021 at 5:36 pm #65041Donna AndersenKeymaster
mtnpeak3 – Yes, the guy has the traits of a personality disorder. Maybe antisocial, narcissistic or borderline – it doesn’t matter. The important point is that he will never change and you need to get him out of your life.
I know that terminating the pregnancy is a difficult decision, but it is the right one. First of all, these disorders are highly genetic, so yes, it is possible that the child would inherit it.
Secondly, if you have a child with this guy you will be connected to him for the rest of your life, and I assure you, that would be a nightmare. Nothing good can come from it.
Regarding your question – yes, it is shocking how sociopaths have the ability to worm their way into our heads and hearts so quickly. It has to do with the love bombing, intermittent reinforcement, dopamine, oxytocin, etc. Essentially they hijack the human bonding system. But I am so glad that you saw the truth of his disorder before you were stuck with him forever.
February 23, 2021 at 3:16 pm #65312ina91Participant
He was never physically violent, and actually seems to care about animals and vulnerable population a lot to the extent he worked for non-profits for a long time – GIRLLLL this caught my eye, because my ex is exactly like this. Yet, he lies and manipulates for money. Has scammed for than 15 person that I know of, and due to his impulsivity is always in accidents. Yet, he loves animals and kids (he is crazy about his son- not mines). It all depends on the the type of person.
February 23, 2021 at 8:03 pm #65317mtnpeak3Participant
Thank you all for your responses. A little update…it’s been 1 month since I’ve broken up with him, and he has been sending me the most unreal emails and letters trying to win me back. They just feel rotten, pathological and completely detached from reality. He has said that he’s completely changed and is now the perfect partner for me which is almost laughable if it wasn’t so scary. I have changed my locks and my friends and family know what’s going on. I haven’t responded to any of his attempts at contact, and I’m hoping he eventually just slithers away and leaves me alone. Since we’ve broken up and the fog has been cleared from my eyes, I’ve started to fill in some of the blanks and put the pieces together of who he actually is. It is CRAZY I now believe that everything he told me about himself was a lie by either omission or embellishment. I think he is truly a shell of a person and basically just wanted to become me or take over my life to give his meaning. I am so creeped out that I let this person into my life and believed that I loved him, but incredibly grateful I was able to end my pregnancy on time and save myself and my life from this incredibly sick and dangerous person.
February 23, 2021 at 10:16 pm #65318
mtnpeak- The very difficult decisions you’ve had to make in a short amount of time are very admirable. Your recent update rings of strength and courage.
Some of the things you pointed out like lying by omission or embellishment and wanting to become you or take over your life to give his life meaning are the same thoughts I experienced with my ex. My ex would omit important details and always made himself look like the noble one. I felt all of his talk without anything to back it up was actually because he felt he couldn’t measure up to the way I conducted my life. He wanted a life like mine, but would never admit to his shortcomings. Instead he would diminish me to make himself look good. He was so arrogant and at the same time so childish it was almost laughable.
You’re on a good path to healing and recovery. Wishing you continued strength on your journey.
October 12, 2021 at 1:02 am #66599amber318Participant
I’m sorry you went through this. Your ex sounded almost like the same person as my ex. I can’t even picture how you have to go through to endure to end the pregnancy and end the relationship with your ex. Your ex definitely sounded like a sociopath of fabricating and putting a fake mask of being the most charming, caring and loving partner he could be. Then face-off once you started living together. I also can’t believe all the classic gaslighting and demeaning behaviors of your ex, and I’m sorry for the emotional abuse you had to endure. I experienced the same from my ex: gaslighting – calling me crazy all the time, and in final days labeled me as a psychopath for confronting him with evidence of his web of lies. Hang in there. I’ve found the most support here. I hope you do, too. One day this will all be fine again.
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