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Going forward, while looking back

by AlohaTraveler

 

Today, July 3, is a significant day for me. On this day, three years ago, I left the Bad Man. Let’s take stock of that moment in time:

  • Total cash = $700
  • Debt = at least $16,000
  • Job = None
  • Place to live, bed to sleep in, a clue = No
  • Plan = None
  • Me = A total wreck.

Between May of 2005, when I moved in with the Bad Man, and May of 2007, I have moved 10 times. This includes one move back to the islands in September 2005 and then back to California again on November 29, 2005. My car has 7,200 nautical miles on it and it shows. It looks like it’s eating itself. Cars aren’t meant to go to sea and mine crossed the ocean three times between July 3, 2005 and November 29, 2005.

Below is the Reader’s Digest version of my trials and tribulations.

Movin’ movin’ movin’

  1. Moved in with the Bad Man for one last hurrah after having been apart for 4.5 months. What was I thinking?!
  2. The great escape: Moved out from Bad Man while he was at work.
  3. Moved from one friend to another.
  4. Moved back the the islands.
  5. Moved out of the hotel and into a condo.
  6. Moved back to California again.
  7. Moved in with my employer as a live-in nanny.
  8. Moved in with friends who took care of me for four months because I was a WRECK.
  9. Moved in with another friend after four months of rest, armed with a new plan. Finally.
  10. Moved in with my dear friends, Eric and Jen. This is where I live now and have been living for over a year.

Jobs, jobs, jobs

Between July 3, 2005 and May 2007, I landed and lost six jobs all for various reasons.

  1. North Shore Resort: Resigned and left Hawaii for a second time. Finally, a good choice.
  2. Internet start up: Business went under
  3. “Wellness” company: Fired by a narcissist
    (Noticed right away that the boss reminded me of the Bad Man. Shortly before she gave me the ax, I was told that it was suspect that she had narcissistic personality disorder. Upon hearing this, I had a massive anxiety attack.)
  4. Internet company: Not the right fit
  5. Live-in nanny: Not the right fit again
  6. County job: Contract ran out.

Where I am today

I have a place to call home and have been there for over a year now. Shortly after I moved in, my friends gave me an old dresser. It’s big and heavy and feels like an anchor, a welcome anchor. I unpacked my suitcases for the first time in nearly two years. That night, as I lay in bed, I stared at my “new” dresser and I cried. Since I have been here, life has finally started to stabilize for me.

My symptoms of PTSD have subsided. Occasionally, I have a strange choking, coughing sensation in my throat when I have a distressing thoughts but I don’t have anxiety attacks like I did before. I smile more. I laugh more. I sleep better. I don’t think about the Bad Man and worry if he really was the one and if it really was me that messed it all up. I fully embrace and accept that he is a pathological, not fixable, person and it has absolutely nothing to do with me.

I have two jobs now. I have been at the first one since November of last year. I have been at the second one since March of this year. They are both in the area of social services and are an extension of the county contract I did last year. I have applied for grad school for an MSW and I am waiting to hear if I have been accepted.

I have paid off over $11,000 of that original Maui debt. Keep in mind that since I have been home, I have been unemployed off and on for at least 10 months and have worked for long periods of time for just $10 an hour.

I have started to date. At times, it feels like stepping out on thin ice, but I am doing it. I have started to rejoin the activities I loved in the past, such as sailing and baking and LAUGHING!

The road leads to you

I believe we will recover at the rate equivalent to the degree that we are committed to telling ourselves the truth. Now that you are here at Lovefraud, the truth is available to you and right under your nose. Will you accept it? It’s up to you.

Whatever it is you have lost, you will eventually get one thing back if you keep trying. Life might not ever look like it did before you crossed paths with a pathological partner but if you are open, it can look better. And at the end of the road, you will find YOU, and… another road… and maybe an old dresser.

Sitting in my “Big Girl Panties” today

  • Debts = under control.
  • Jobs = more than one
  • A safe place to live, warm bed, and a plan for my life = check!
  • Me = a whole lot wiser and not a juicy pick anymore for a Bad Man.

AlohaTraveler's new old dresser.

Posted in: Cases

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144 Comments on "Going forward, while looking back"

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You go girl!
Stories like yours keep me strong. Even being in the straights you were in is better than staying to be destroyed piece by piece by a P.
And truer words were never spoken. “It has nothing to do with me”. The victims are interchangeable and of no consequence. We were only meant to “project” for them how worthy they are. So if they land a nice one, like you or me, all the better. If they can rip us off in the process, big score.

Because of our painful and bitter experience, we are now equipped for the rest of our lives to protect ourselves from these vultures.

And we are ready to live, laugh and love!

I hope the bad man doesn’t have initial MH? One of my bosses fled our state and moved to HI. I hope he didn’t rope you in cause I could tell you some stories about when he worked with us.

Awesome! I love the dresser, great talisman….

a pair of big girl panties..would have been hysterical… 🙂

Aloha, “you’ve come a long way baby” and you are on the move! Congratulations!

GREAT POST!

Well Done AloaT. You’re a star! Well done you – big girls panties and all! You’ve shared alot of your pain with us and now you are coming out the other end. Thank you for sharing your inspiring journey. (((hugs)))

“I don’t think about the Bad Man and worry if he really was the one and if it really was me that messed it all up. I fully embrace and accept that he is a pathological, not fixable, person and it has absolutely nothing to do with me.”

That is the biggest TRUTH of all!!!!

We all love the success stories…. Donna’s and your’s!

It sure is a long road to wellness and recovery…. and a lot of times the progress seems so slow, that we don’t even think it’s happening…. but as you have done here, when we make a “list” of what we were and what we started with, and compare it to where we are now and what we have accomplished, we can see the measureable strides we have taken and the hurdles we have overcome…..Aloha, I see that with and in you and with your story. I hope that you keep the lists that you shared with us, close to your heart and mind, so when you have those days that those old tapes play in your head, and when you might ever second guess the reality of what was “not”, pull out those lists of “where and who I was and where and who I am now” and be reminded of the courage, beauty and the TRUTH of who you are.

I read a lot more then I post nowadays.. but I feel a bond with all of you here….

We’ve all seem to have landed here in the same beat-up, broken condition, and through the process of sharing with each other our fears, our anger, our disbelief and giving to one another support, understanding, and love, we eventually come to an acceptance of what happened and perhaps our part in it (lack of boundaries), then we move on to making positive changes in mind and spirit… redefining, reinventing, who we once were, into a better, wholeness of a person….. The proverbial taking something bad that happened and making something good from it. I know that is possible for everyone of us, and at some point we all will be totally in that sweet spot.

Aloha, you have been one of more outspoken ones here and I have seen you “wrap” your arms around those here who, by the pain in their written words, have needed a “hug” with incouraging, heartfelt responses.

You are a success story for all of us.. and we love you! Thanks for once again sharing your heart with us.

~R~

Bravo, Aloha. You’ve been a constant surfeit of comfort, support and practical wisdom for many people on this site.

You DO deserve the very best that life has to offer, and I admire your courage, strength, resolve to be a giving, compassionate woman during and after the chaos that the BM created for you. He is a nobody, a plague upon the human species.

We are the epitome of success, proven by our indomitable spirits to overcome that which we thought was the surest defeat. I sincerely applaud all the women and men who have been exposed to the darkest, blackest souls on Earth but were able to claw, slowly climb their way out of the abyss, clean and pure, shining with incandescent light.

You are radiant, hon, and your radiance flows from this healing website to my monitor, into my heart.

Bless you…:)

Another survival story!! I am beginning to see how much everyone is healing since I came to the sight last fall (case history – pilot cons women…). I too look back and see what I have accomplished since January 2006 when the bottom fell out. And the best part is I did it by myself. I had to sell a boat, get a mortgage, hire an attorney out of state, get an new job (the other filed bankrutcy), and then to be able to pay the real estate taxes – I decided I would have to rent the extra bedroom in my house. I have survived!!
I still like spending time by myself (because I don’t have to answer to anyone), but I am finding myself slowly warmimg up to doing things with friends; and of course I have my family.
Life is certainly not looking at dismal as it did before. Now I’m working on my “bucket list”.
Best to you AlohaT!!

Aloha:

Hurrah for you!! Especially the laughter. Very touching article on healing and survival; you’re very strong.

Congratulations!

Peggy Pseu

Its nice to see you back peggywhoever. Makes me nostalgic, when I remember some of the people on here when I first posted last autumn and how far we have all travelled. I do miss some of the other people and wonder how they are getting on.

Hi, Peggy, glad you are back too! Come more often if you can! Your words of wisdom are always welcome!

Yes, some people move on and we wonder how they are doing, because we do “get attached” to each other, and are cheer leaders for each other.

hi aloha……2 friends moved to hawaii..then back because of breakups and now back again to the big island…so seems some move to hawaii and not just texas ..lol…anyhow no truer words were said than,,,”we recover at a rate equivalent to the degree we are committed to telling ourselves the truth”……….i think we want to tell ourselves the truth, but dont even know what it is….reading this site has helped me to recognize the truth and then tell it to myself….very profound again your dresser is gorgeous terri

If anyone wants to move to Hawaii to get over their Bad Man experience, please contact me first. Maui is known by the locals as the “marital graveyard.” The number of broken down and broken hearted there far out number the emotionally healthy prospects. And… I met 5 women, right before I left, that had similiar experiences as me with other men. These women, like myself, were WITHOUT a history of abusive relationships.

Thanks to all of you for your kind words. I am still on my healing journey. I was a broken hearted newbie when I went to Maui and was already very lost on my career path but Maui and the Bad Man were the straws that pushed me to the edge.

But I didn’t let go.. fingers bleeding, nails cracking… I did not let go and this has been the uphill battle of all time for me. Life is getting better and no longer spiraling out of control as it seemed to be a few years ago.

My friends have been my family as I recover. And the characters here at LoveFraud have given me much support and encouragement along the way. This is my LoveFraud Family.

All the best to all of you!

Aloha

P.S. His initials are JW.

Dear alohatraveler:

Glad to see that your sense of humor has come back. My sense of humor is what I missed the most during this tour of horror.

P.S. MH, JW what’s the diff? They’re all the same anyway. My ex is JB and I posted him on Peep Sheet.

Have a great day. Smile, it’s contagious.

Wow

I have only been on this site just a few days and I thank my lucky stars as when I am lonely here all of you are.

A great story and its good for me to see and all the comments so encouraging.

Keep up all the good work

March 2004 he approached me in a local bar, , he was trying to hard he was just a little to persistent, he told me he just moved here from Portland OR, normally if a man gives me his number at a bar it ends up in the trash by the end of the night, but he was insistent I program it in my cell phone and he watched as I did making sure programmed it and had his name, I remember thinking to myself please just go away, but I smiled and was polite, the conversation was short and he left the bar telling me to call him, I was thinking yeah ok buddy, have a good night honestly I never once called a man who gave me his number at a bar, and I was not about to start, I remember it was Good Friday I was very recently divorced, I was not feeling vulnerable, I was looking forward to starting over, I was 29 years old. Two days later on Easter I was not feeling so empowered my children were with my ex husband it was the first holiday I spent alone since my divorced, I was lonely, then I remembered that guy from the bar he said he just moved here I bet he has no family here, and is feeling lonely as well, I figured why not call him what could it hurt, I called him and my life is forever changed.
We hit it off and things moved along really fast before I knew it he was living with me, it was only a month after I meet him, and things were not adding up with him, I had a funny feeling, so I ended it and he left.
A few weeks passed and he never called me, and to this day I don’t know why it bothered me, but it did, again I don’t know why but I called him, and before I knew it he was living with me, he said he was going to be moving away to MS in a month or so to be near his Father, so even though my instinct told me something was wrong get away from this man, I figured he is moving soon, so just ride it out and end things on a positive note, in the mean time I was slowly falling in love with him, as the time approached for him to leave, I was feeling sad and lonely, knowing he would be moving away forever in just a few days. That was his time to strike making my worse nightmare come true, I came home and he was gone, I was asking myself why would he do this when he is leaving in a few days, he would not take my calls, completely ignore me, and then I find out there is another woman, I was crushed, why, how, just like that he walked away with no explanation, in such a cruel and hurtful manor, I was left feeling that I would never see him again, I felt so helpless, then he would call, and ask to see me, I so relieved, hurt, and angry, but relieved, because I thought I would never get closure, or answers if he just left, he would say he is sorry, and he suggested how about I stay another month, to make things right, I was so caught in the moment I forgot what he just did to me, and was happy because the helplessness, and hurt was gone. It all happened so fast I did not realize what happened, I somehow forgot about the intentional pain, and hurt. And focused on making things good because he was about to leave forever, this became a pattern he did this to me three or four times in the course of a year, I still don’t know exactly how he was able to do it, but he made me very insecure thinking, I could come home one day and he would just be gone, I began to feel I needed him, I now realize he knew exactly what he was doing he found my weakness, and he proceeded to “break me down” it was as if he were trained on how to do this, he cheated on me, he did not work, yet I felt I needed him, I was always a very independent woman, and had never had an abusive relationship before this, my friends and family saw what was going on, so I began to lie, deny we were together I would say I ended it, thinking in my mind I could pull off the lie to my friends and family, after all he was moving soon so I would not have to live this lie long, looking back I think I really wanted him to move, because I saw the toll it was taking on me living a lie, always full of anxiety, trying to not have anyone know he was living with me, even my children thought he was gone and we lived together, it was a constant juggle him out the back door, as I entered the front with my kids, I was so stressed out, but he was moving soon, and I was in love with him, I had such a fear of him just leaving me when all I wanted was to end it on a positive note, and having closure.
This went on for over a year, then I sold some investment property this was to be a second chance at life, I was going to buy a house, it was not a huge amount of money 50 Thousand but enough to get ahead, his attitude changed he was so sweet, and played me like a violin, telling me exactly what I needed to hear, it happened so fast only 4 months, and I was broke. Imagine coming down from the high of having money (I never had money before to just shopping or do what I wanted) to being broke, realizing I blew this chance to buy a home, I was depressed, he was cold did not care a bit, my estimate is he probably ended up with over half the money threw sweet talking, loans, shopping etc. he did not care what so ever that I wasted my second chance at life.
It was October 28 2005 the very week the last dime was spent, we rented a movie, then I went to bed he said he be up soon, when I woke up, the nightmare began, he was gone all his things gone he packed up and left while I was sleeping never saying good bye, all that time when he was breaking me down, making me feel that he would do just that leave , with no closure, no explanation, just gone. At that moment I realized I was scammed, I screamed at the top of my lungs, breaking things, I remember driving down the road just screaming, and crying I feel so out of control. My heart ripped out my chest, I loved him, I wanted to die, and all the lies I had told to family and friends, saying he was gone, we were no longer together, I continued to play it off, even though my heart was broke, I questioned everything, even myself how could I let this happen, I was so deeply depressed, yet tried not to let anyone know, what happened, because I would look like such a fool, not to mention I was living a lie, all that time to family and friends how could I come clean now, so I suffered the most horrible pain I ever felt, and I suffered it alone, nobody to talk to about it.
He was long gone, I was angry hurt, in disbelief, he was so cruel he went out his way to make it clear that he never cared, he never loved me, and as he said “I was just his 2 dollar whore” and I should just get over it.
He spent the next few months traveling the county meeting woman that he met online; of course they paid for his expenses. I would call him begging him to lie to me, I would say trick my mind make it so it is not true, he would go out of his way to intentionally hurt me. As soon as I would begin to accept it for what it was, he would call me, say he is sorry and that he loved me, one occasion he went as far as to tell me he was on his way back to me, only 5 hours away, although I did not want him back, I wanted to believe him I wanted the pain to stop”it was then that he stopped taking my calls I did not hear from him for 2 weeks, when he called he acted as if I was crazy like he never promised he was 5 hours away and we were going to make it right.
I decided I was not going to stop till I found him, sued him and held him accountable. Everyday when I woke up I thought what can I do today to find him, I was resourceful. He was on many dating sites, so I would post fake profiles, trying to chat with him, by doing so I would get the I.P address which only gave me a city and state, but I would use that info and contact him and say how is Dallas I hired an investigator I know where you are, trying to make his life hell. On 2 occasions I was able to locate him to a specific woman, one in FL and one in IL. I told them everything sent them proof and they threw him out, if felt good, I thought eventually he would stop, playing games and just give me my money, and realize he did not win with me. But he never kept playing a game of cat and mouse for two years after he left it consumed me, it was all I thought of. I was beginning to wonder what I was doing, questioning my own sanity. Everyone said stop let it go I could not though I had an overwhelming desire to catch him, and expose him on T.V it sounds crazy but that was my goal. Last fall it all came to an end he just showed up at my door, like nothing ever happened. That was my opportunity to strike back, for me it was closure, I convinced him to go on Judge Mathis telling him if I won they would pay the judgement to me on his behalf, and I said to him that I would split it with him. Being the sociopath that he is so full of greed, he believed me. My intention was to go on the show, and blind side him, expose him, and most importantly get closure. We went on the show, and I won but the con man that he is, he was able to make me look unstable, he was so calm, and I was nervous as hell. That is about 10% of the story I could not begin to tell the whole story. The good new is I really did get closure, and I feel free”but I must admit there is many scars, many wounds that have yet to heal I don’t know if they ever will. I have since meet someone, and beginning to heal but I still have many issues, when it comes to relationships and I hope to heal.

I’m so sorry for what happened to you. Your healing will take time, and yes, you do become obsessed with finding a way to punish them. In my case, what goes around is finally coming around to him. Oh, he will never admit he did anything wrong, just like your sociopath will never admit it. People do begin to see right through them. I became obsessed with finding an ex bf who was also a narcissist. I wanted to find out where he lived, what he had been up to. He had also left me with no closure, and I thought, maybe now things will work out. One morning I thought, what are you doing? This man hurt you twenty years ago the same way this last one did. He cheated on me even though he was seventeen years older than I was. Why was I going to put myself through that again. Now there is my closure, sometimes it has to come from within yourself. They never change, but we can, we can evolve to be better people than we were before we met them, stronger. I wish you the best of luck, the recovery will be long, but you will be fine.

Blackrose and ss55125,

Well said. Closure can come from within ourselves. YES YES YES!

My life did not start to come back together until I let go of the Bad Man. The closure I needed, I found here at LF and in books when I began to understand the pathology.

If I had waited for some kind of satisfying explantion from BM, I would still be waiting. As I recall, his last communication to me said, “I am ready to forgive you now.”

Right. Forgive me! This does not closure make!

I figured him out. And now, I think about me. The jobs I lost in that first year or so… I was obsessed with thoughts of the Bad Man. I spent 50% of the time thinking I did something wrong and how could I fix it and the other 50% of time trying to think of ways to stop him from hurting other people.

That didn’t leave much room for getting on with my life and healing.

HAPPY JULY 4TH EVERYONE!!!

Hi all,

Hi Beverly and OxDrover, thanks for the welcome. I’ve been…busy…trying to heal, traveling and trying to cleanse my soul. But this is a circular process sometimes, with ups and downs as we all know.

Has LilOrphan been on? I haven’t seen posts from her for awhile.

ss55125:

Sorry for your heartache. Welcome to the Heartache Club, maybe we should start our own chapter. You must have been through betrayal, deception, lies, cheating, manipulation, and heartache to sign up. Open membership. No gender requirements. No age requirements. No educational, financial, or other requirements for membership. Haha.

Truth is stranger than fiction.

Glad to be back. This is a good place. The EOPC (I think this is the right group) is having a 4-day cruise to Cozumel, I believe. I want a Lovefraud Cruise. C’mon ladies, let Donna know and we can visit and cry and learn and heal in the Caribbean with a pina colada! It would be fun.

Happy 4th! Hope we all have BBQ’s and fun times today.

Peggy Pseu

Dear Aloha, I hadn’t tought a obut the initials for Bad Man being BM—boy is that appropriate! Sorry—my sick nurse’s sense of humor and scatalogical thinking! LOL

No, haven’t seen orphan in a while come to think of it. Hope she is well and will get in contact.

SS55125, welcome to a healing place, sorry we have to “meet like this” but you have come to a good support network here and lots of stuff to read and learn. The more we know about “them” the more we see how they are ALIKE. Even how WE are alike, vulnerable.

The pain of the grief we all go through also has patterns and the biggest one is that you are NOT alone. There are people here who do understand because we have all been through the same wringer–somtimes I think we have all dated the same guy! LOL

This was a wonderful 4th, no “celebration” or fire works, and didn’t even BBQ but there was NO CRISIS today, all is well. My son just left to go back to his summer job, after being home a week while they were closed down. He and I accomplished a great deal, in a relaxed sort of work schedule, but both ofr us are bolstered by the progress we made in the Herculean task of cleaning up this mess that has accumulated over the last 4 years.

July 14th is the anniversary of my husband’s death in the plane crash, and though I have him on my mind a lot, it is peaceful and loving, not painful. My home is starting to feel like HOME again without th big black cloud of pain hanging over it, and I am still cautious but not living in terror!

Yea, Peggy, a lovefraud cruise would be nice, but unfortunately the Ps left a bunch of us having problems paying the rent so might be out of the reach of the majority of us so maybe we could meet somewhere in a nice state or national park were we could camp out or get hotel rooms that were reasonable so everyone could afford to come, it would still be wonderful to get together and see each other’s faces.

You’ll recognize me, I’m the 61 year old that looks like I did when I was 20! LOL NOT!!! ha ha But I do have a SMILE on my face that would light up a stadium today! Have a happy 4th everyone! Hope your days are as peaceful as mine is today! We all deserve some peace in our lives!

OxDrover:

Yeah, sad but true that a lot of people may have some financial issues due to the BM. Happy for you that you have found peace. The meeting place is irrelevant, the healing and connections are what is important.

PS

ss55125

Judge Mathis? You go, girl! I’m impressed with your preserverence. How many people “win” when they go up against a P or an S. I’m glad you got some money and “won” something after all. Now, you can go about your healing.

Do you think the Judge got your “defendant” was an S/P/or whatever? You have more courage than I do; I couldn’t have gone on tv but I’m giving you a high-five right now…or my snappy new favorite from someone here…
a high-five, two finger snaps and a hip bump…plus a big wink!

Hi Peggywhoever. Yes What happened to LilOrphan, somewhere in my psyche, Im missing her??

Happy 5th of July – I am getting a late start today, we were invited to a party yesterday and had a blast! Turns out people do care about us!

I think of it this way, THE MINUTE my creep is away from me, it creates a vacuum and almost immediately something comes forward to fill it.

I just have to trust that – and continue to trust that if I am open to these new things and let go of the creep and the DREAM that I held onto that we would have a life together (sometimes I still find myself delusional, but it is becoming less often. YEA.)

I can change my dreams anytime I want to. They are mine.

Anyway, in the shower this morning, a little epiphany hit me, as it usually does there. (Maybe it has something to do with washing dirt away?)

During my five-year nightmare with the creep, twice I was suicidal. Once I sought help and medication, I was desperate.

The other time, I knew what to do, I started talking and asking questions to find out if the lies the creep was telling me about myself were true.

I turned to the creep, crying, pleading with him to let up on me because I wanted to die. His response? He told me I was selfish.

Nice guy.

I always thought when people contemplated suicide, it was because they felt life wasn’t worth living.

I didn’t feel that way. But for a long time I couldn’t say exactly why I wanted to die.

This morning in the shower, I put it together.

My life was worth living, but for the five years we were together (except for the times he left me to ‘punish’ me for misbehaving) he drilled into my brain.

His message again and again to me was:

You cause the people you love pain. Just your existence hurts people you love. You hurt people you love just because of the way you are.

He had me convinced that again and again, I caused him pain. That just my normal, everyday behavior, or just me wanting affection or attention caused him pain.

That when I cried when he hurt me, it caused HIM pain. That I was wrong to cry.

When I grew angry at the way he hurt me, it caused HIM pain. That I was crazy, out of control and dangerous.

He applied that to my entire life. He said I caused my friends pain.

He told me I caused my son pain.

He told me I caused his family pain – so much pain that they would not allow me on their property – all because I was the way I was.

All because I cried. Or wanted him to treat me better. Or because I got angry when he would make my son and I spend Christmas alone because we were banned from his family’s Christmas dinner.

I was the problem in SO many peoples’ lives. I liked my life. I wanted to live it. But he convinced me that my existence just caused others pain.

I wanted to die to stop hurting him. To stop hurting my son. To stop hurting our friends and his family.

I thought I caused all the pain in everyone’s lives. That I was the reason this guy would break his promises to my son to take him places.

The creep would tell me again and again – ‘I would do everything with your son, I love your son. But you are the reason I don’t, your overreaction to things, the way you are keeps me from spending time with your son.”

“Your son would be invited to Christmas dinner, but he isn’t because my family can’t stand you,” he’d say.

When I would cry, he would say I was too depressed to be a good mother to my son and actually once threatened to call the authorities to have him taken away from me, for my son’s own good of course…

So be careful people. I believed what he told me. But deep inside I knew I was a good mother. I know my son is happy, I know I am a good person.

But he used what I knew were my strengths to hurt me. He took the things I was proud of and twisted them into things he said I did horribly.

That’s how he did it. That’s how he did this to me. He almost had me believing it. I almost died. My son would have grown up without his good mother.

I must remember this. I must never, ever forget he did this.

Eyesopened,

*a high-five, two finger snaps and a hip bump*…that was ME!..haha…chattin with my fellow veggie sister, Free.

Am I grandstanding? Yay, me! Tis a first so allow me to bask in my own creative glory…haha. jk.

Glad I made ya smile, and maybe giggle a bit…heehee

Lilygirl,

I care for you also, as I’m sure all the lovely ladies and gents (Henry, James, Southernman, etc) care deeply also.

I think you’re moving along splendidly in your healing & recovery. And I personally will never listen to the vicious lies, the foul vitrol that spills from the evil lips of a predator ever again! I KNOW right from wrong, up from down, salt from pepper and I have made a solemn oath to myself to literally shun them from my presence the very second my beloved intuition warns me. She is on, on, on all the time now. We are the bestest of friends and I won’t ignore her again.

**Hug to Lilygirl and her son**

Dear Lilygirl,

Boy can they twist the truth! Can they make us believe black is white, or white is black—-that all the problems of the world are because of us, we are so bad, so evil—but that being the case, why do they want to be around us “evill folks?”

Lily girl, never never NEVER let someone invalidate you, or twist your truth. Don’t listen to their words, look at their actions. Okay, they say “You’re no good” “you cause others pain” etc.—Well, mr P (you say) I’m so glad you pointed this out to me, thank you very much for making me aware I am a worthless piece of crap, and because you have done me such a FAVOR, I am going to remove myself from your life so I don’t cause YOU ANY MORE PAIN. Bye now, have a good life! LOL

I no longer need anyone in my life who thinks I am a worthless piece of crap—no matter who they are. If they don’t like me, BYE BYE, have a good life! I don’t mean I think I am perfect and never make a mistake, but if they think my CHARACTER is BAD, then obviously it is either bad (they are right) or it is NOT BAD (and they are wrong)— but I am what I am. Let’s see now. I don’t steal, I don’t cheat, I keep my word, I care about others, I’m not mean to animals or people. I’m funny and talented, smart and well educated…I make my own living, I don’t owe any one, I give to charity—yep, that makes me a BAD CHARACTER and I must obviously be EVIL—N*O*T—-SO, having validated myself, and decided that their OPINION is wrong, that I am NOT an evil person causing everyone in my environment pain from my evil meanness, the question now becomes, do I want a person in my life that thinks I am EVIL? NOPE. Sure don’t. No sense in trying to convince them otherwise, they have obviously made up their minds already.

Other questions. Am I responsible for the happiness of everyone in my environment? Does everyone have to like me or approve of me? Whose opinion of me is the most valid? Mine (who knows me) or someone else who says these things? Do I have to be perfect to be acceptable?

Answering these questions also shows me that I don’t need in my life anyone who is so obdurate toward me that my association with them causes both them and myself pain. We would BOTH be better off parting ways.

If you don’t like me, get out of my life.

It always surprises me just how much time is needed to re-coup and heal from this types of dysfunctional relationships. I believe many of us could lay down this type of time frame and find a lot of similarities (time wise) between us. But what really surprises me is that it doesn’t take long while being in the company of a sociopath to take on so much damage! Some would say they were only with them for a couple of months, still other’s years. Still the “damage” is always great and extensive.

AlohaTraveler

I too saw my life like a “bouncing ball”. They must love to keep us on this emotional roller coaster for as long as they can. Only when we “cried” quits do they then move on to yet another victim. Only when we tell them NO MORE! Albeit money, emotional support as well as our very hearts and souls. Will they then get really for yet just another “move” all be it a person, place or thing! If we could look at their “time frame” I question myself and ask me. What would that look like? What would I find there in their day by day, month by month and year by year “time line”??? Or do I really want to know?

Thanks for sharing!!!!

James:

Think about what is really going on from this theory.

Go back to your childhood. Your parents taking you to church. You learn different scriptures taught to you and everyone in your community, Sunday after Sunday. Your parents instill right and wrong into you as a child, your teachers do the same, your family unit, aunts, uncles, neighbor’s … everyone has something to do with your spiritual growth. You’re young and impressionable. You accept things as TRUTH and incorporate right from wrong in your brain’s data bank. As you mature … grade after grade, your teachers are still instilling morals into you and your classmates. So where all in agreement our society instills morals and ethics in to all of us as we grow. What’s the difference between you and them? Where and why did they veer off the path? Now lets put the immediate family into the mix. You have siblings. How many? Some families come with at least 4 siblings, some 3, some two, the proverbial girl for mom and boy for dad. Then there’s the only child doted on and pampered by both mom and dad. Then you have the parent scenario. Did they marry for love? Or, did they marry to leave their parents home. So this reasoning comes into the mix. Keep deducting it from what your family unit is all about versus her family unit. Your upbringing, versus, her up bringing. The theory for a healthy marriage with one child is Dad is the positive polarity and Mom is the negative polarity. Both polarities are equal in strength (not a negative connotation). Child is born into family. Positive and Negative polarities hold child directly in the center of them. Both strengths contribute to the love and care and nuturring of the child. Dysfunctional scenario of a family. One of the polarities is stronger than the other and the child dangling in the middle of both polarities gets pulled towards the stronger polarity. Breakdown is caused by the egos of the stronger and weaker parent polarity … filtering this dysfunction off to the child. The egos of the parents are working full time instead of what and how we were to live by following God’s word (teachings from the Bible). Child, instead of staying humble and learning the scriptures (the word of God and how God wants us to live) says in their child’s mind, what the heck, my parents are no longer teaching me from scriptures … they’re getting off the righteous path … why shouldn’t I. So the child starts learning from their EGO instead of the righteous way of the Word of God. (EGO equals Erase God Out) versus the Word of God (what our country was founded on, the teachings (scriptures) of God). The parents are living from their egos, venturing off the righteous path, listening to their own EGOs instead of the Word of God (God’s plans for how we are to live). Then with this mix going on in the family unit, and the breakdown of the church and the real teachings of God (the church has hidden a lot these days if you are up on reading the papers for the last 40 years… allowing ego minded priests to hide behind the robes of the elders). Then there’s the split of the state and the church. Taking God out of the schools (thanks to the atheists of the world, and my question to atheists is MAKE ME A FLOWER, A TREE, A SUNSET, THE RAIN ON THE GRAINS ACROSS OUR COUNTRY, MAKE ME A CANYON, THE SEAS, THE SKIES? – Make these several things I listed and then I’ll see where your viewpoint is coming from, other than that, shut up with your egos). So when you’re dealing with someone in your life that burned you. You are dealing with a person who is living in their ego instead of living humbly the way God wanted us to live, by his Word.

And that James. Is the truth. If you can figure out another scenario, let me know. This is my theory and I’m sticking with it.

Dear Free:

Read my theory of lies versus God’s word that I wrote to James. If you have another theory. Write it down so we all can work these theories through. Step by step, breaking down their lies to that we can get at the truth. The truth is what will free us from our pain. Not staying in the lies they told us.

Peace to your sweet heart and soul.

You guys are the best. Thank you all so much for your support and your validation.

If there is one thing that always reassures me that this is indeed a pathology that is sick and twisted, it is how much we all have suffered in the same ways.

It is like our abusers are all following the same script. It cements this for me. There is a real danger here, a real danger.

I hope that as I post some of my experiences, somehow I can speed this process ahead for someone. I wasted so much time and so much heart-effort to learn what I needed to know. It was such a hard journey, and I am still on it.

Even with knowing all I know, feeling all I have felt, the horror of believing the world is better off with me dead, I still ache sometimes for him.

Like he is the only one who can make me feel better – I know better. But my heart isn’t there yet.

I know I feel like he is the only one who can make me feel better PRECISELY because he is the one who made me feel this bad.

Knowing there are explanations for the way I feel, these conflicted thoughts, is what I use to stay strong. I am simply suffering from what you said Free, ambient, covert abuse.

The flashbacks I suffer enrage me when I think of how deathly oppressive he was. He isolated me from the rest of the world – and began to work on breaking me from my son.

He’d complain that he wanted a ‘date’ and he was sick of hearing about my son. He was sick of me wanting him to actually spend time with us together.

That is where I drew the line, but it would have been SO easy to turn on my son as the person standing in the way of my relationship with this creep.

I had two senior citizen cats, who I raised from orphaned kittens, bottle fed them, the works. They were both 19 years old. I loved them. I had them for 19 years.

The creep told me he couldn’t stand them, and I am so ashamed to say it, but I took them to the vet and had them put down. My pets. I loved them.

But I stupidly thought that if the cats weren’t around, he would be able to stop this abuse of me, and be kind to me. I thought he was angry at me because he couldn’t stand my cats.

He knew what he was doing.

He was forcing me to turn on anything or anyone who was important to me, my pets, my hobbies, my friends, my work. EVERYTHING.

But he did it in a way that convinced me it was my choice, or my failure, or my cruelty.

That I was hurting everyone I know just by being me. That I was hurting my son and a chance at having a father in his life because I loved my cats. That I was preventing my son from having a family because I cared too much about my two cats.

I was selfish. I was irrational. I was hurting my son by loving my pets. What was wrong with me? He made me feel like all my judgements were wrong, all my feelings, my decisions, my likes, dislikes, loves and hates. Everything was wrong.

The way I was – WAS WRONG.

When I think of it, I can’t believe I got through it. I can’t believe someone would do that to me in the name of love. I just can’t process it. Sometimes I can’t breathe when I think of some things he did to my mind.

But I guess I don’t have to understand why he did it to me, I just have to know that he did it to me. That he almost killed me and would have gotten away with it.

Not only that, I would be dead and people would actually hug him and say, ‘Yea, you were right about her. She WAS crazy and irrational, she killed herself.’

He would drive me to levels of frustration that no one could endure, and do it all quietly, so that when I finally couldn’t take it anymore, I would loose it and people around me would just shake their heads at how crazy I was.

He would sit back and say see? See what I mean about her?

Then they would support him and tell him what a good guy he was by sticking with me despite my insanity. He would reap soothing support for abusing me.

Everyone around us did that. His family. Our friends. Even MY friends eventually took his side.

So now he is with dozens of people who call and invite him places. He is receiving their support and understanding of why he is not with me, and I am here alone with my son, trying to pick up whatever pieces of my life are left and have a nice day.

My son is only 8. He has seen what I have been through, and we talk about it often. I am not keeping it a secret from him, he needs to know that people will do this to each other. There are predators in the world, who say they love you and then hurt you.

I am hoping that he never, ever goes through this, that what I have gone through shows him how to trust his gut and not believe the lies.

This experience will strengthen me too. I know it. I can’t wait to breathe again. I can’t wait to live again.

I remember calling him after he ruined my birthday (a usual occurence) late on a Friday night, when I honestly thought I was going to kill myself, and pleading with him to tell me he cared about me, that I was important to him, that I wasn’t a disgusting piece of shit.

He told me that I was selfish because I was ruining his good time. I could tell by the background noise he was in a bar.

How did I ever get through that? How did I survive this? How could I miss this person? How could I have loved this person?

How does he live with himself? I need a break. I am going to hug my son. My little boy is the anti-creep – he is the goodness in the world that keeps me from giving up when I feel this way.

Right now he is in his bedroom playing with some Wall-E toys and I hear him making rocket ship noises. God has sent me a little angel, right from heaven.

I am enraged when I think that this creep was working to turn me against this little angel. But as good as he was at twisting my brain, he couldn’t reach that goal.

I am proud of myself for that, and forever grateful to my little boy for saving my life with his love, his goodness and that little hand that still curls around my finger when he is sleeping.

Dear Lilygirl:

Don’t worry. Pain is God’s way of thumping us in our heads trying to tell us something is wrong. You’ll get through the pain to brighter thoughts and God’s TRUTH and the freedom that it brings. For now, smile and laugh. It will do your heart good. It will take steps. Step by step to get your back to the best that God wants you to be. I promise. We all promise.

Peace.

Dear Lilygirl,

The “crazymaking” that they do to us can be horrific, and it sounds like your P was an expert at it.

Lily, I would also strongly suggest that you get some professional counseling for both you and your son. I am a retired medical and psychological professional myself, and without professional counseling I don’t think I could have come through my own scrapes with the Ps with anything resembling sanity! It was TOUGH for me to be on the “wrong side of the clipboard” and to GET counseling when I used to be the one GIVING the counseling. But without some dispassionate and professional help I am not sure I could have made it at all.

I emerged from the other side of the counseling a stronger person. I have also used the support and advice and help from this blog, but the one-on-one of a counselor was very important as well. My story was so bizare that he asked me to bring in PROOF that I wasnt a paranoid delusional “nut case” (my words not his LOL) I wasn’t offended though that he wanted proof because my story sounded like a “paranoid deluisonal nut case!” LOL Finding the RIGHT therapist that does “get it” and knows about psychopaths is very important as well.

They WARP reality for us, and we give them the power to do so because we try so hard to please them. It sounds to me like you might actually have some Stockholm Syndrome symptoms or PTSD as well, so it might be a good idea to get it checked out by a professional. I sure did and it is so much improved now with therapy that in many ways I’m not the “same person” I was before—I’m the “new and improved ME!” I have a better and stronger relationship with myself, with those I love, and with my faith. I’m learning to set boundaries and doing the things that take care of ME.

(((BIG HUGS))))) and prayers for your recovery from this nightmare! Oxy

oxyD –

I’ve been there, done that and to be honest, I cannot trust professionals anymore. I just can’t. I think in all I’ve seen seven counselors plus have attended support groups at my local women’s shelter.

No one – NO ONE – got it.

Their ignorance played into this for me. All they wanted to talk about was what I was doing to allow it. I will not EVER EVER sit and look at what I did again.

That is EXACTLY what he wanted, for me to keep questioning myself.

I know now that I was a victim of a crime. Period. There are things now I must do to protect myself so this doesn’t happen again, but in reality, this could happen to any of us again.

I must now deal with what has become of my life, and decide what to do now. It makes me sick to have to rebuild my life again because someone decided to prey on me, but that is what it is.

I either give up or I rebuild. There is no choice.

I think you are a particularly educated ‘retired’ professional, because you have endured this. But I am finished with ‘professionals.’ DONE.

I know I am in trouble here, but I finally have the knowledge and tools that I need to deal with this. It is NOT easy and I have been lucky because he is leaving me alone for the past four months.

But my fear is that the minute I laugh, the minute I breathe, the minute I take a baby step forward, my phone will ring.

I know it will ring. I know he will show up here. I know he will try to get to me any way he can. It is not a matter of if – it is a matter of when.

I need to go through this process and remember these things in a healthier, stronger state of mind and see the reality of what he did.

Then I will be strong enough to resist him. I feel like I am preparing for the battle of my life.

Only by doing this, talking with people who understand and keep the blame where it belongs – ON HIM – will I be able to overcome what has been done to me.

I am as strong as they get. I am also not the first woman he has done this to, and I will not be the last. People have let me know that he has done this in the past, I don’t have the details, but I know enough.

That is the deepest comfort in this – that even though the dozens of people are holding his hand today, sooner or later he will do this again to someone, and then those people will see the truth.

Someday some of them might come to me and tell me they are sorry they abandoned me for him. I might get the good ones back in my life.

My only regret is that for this to all play out, another woman will suffer this, or another child, or he may end up with a child of his own to abuse.

He might be successful at killing someone next time.

I escaped with my life, that is how I feel. I escaped. Right now that is where I am.

These holidays are toughest on me. They are the times when people are either really happy or really sad. Holidays always gave him an extra reason to slam me to the ground, he knew they were tough on me.

Any holiday would be the time he would always abandon me and tell me I didn’t deserve to go to the beach or skiing in Vail for Christmas or over to his parents’ for a barbeque.

And he would make sure I knew he was going.

I would be left at the last minute alone. So I sink very low when the holidays come around. But at least I am alone today because it is my choice. Not his.

Dear Lilygirl,

I suggest that you keep reading and learning from this blog. There are so many good essays on this site with so much insight into how WE (in particular) individually became enmeshed in the relationship with the Psychopath. What about US in particular made us vulnerable to their criminal behavior.

Just as a lion can pick out the one wildebeeste in a large herd of thousands that is vulnerable in some even small way, the psychopaths pick us because there is something in us that makes us a bit more vulnerable than another person to their ploy.

I don’t “blame” myself for this, but I recognize that my desires to help others, and my lack of boundary setting with people I was close to made me the “easy mark” for the psychopaths. I’m closing up those loop holes in my programming so that I will NOT ever again be a victim. I will not allow it! I will protect myself. I can depend on myself to be strong, to keep my own power to use it to protect me.

I don’t need someone else to validate my truth that the psychopaths are evil. I can validate myself. I had so many cricises in such a short time, from the death of my husband, the death and illness of my step father, etc. that my strength was weakened, and my old ways of allowing myself to be victimized in the past and not fighting back, not using my own power to protect myself, surfaced and I was a very injured victim to start with for the X-BF-P and my DIL and the Trojan Horse P and my P-son. I was at my weakest and they took advantage of that. In the future, I will keep my defenses strong, and prepare for “battle” if another one attempts to invade my life and my heart. I will never again brush off the waving of a BIG RED FLAG and ignore its warning that there is a PREDATOR in the area. I will never ever again believe that I am not a worthy person, or that someone else is more worthy than I, or that it is okay for someone to treat me with disrespect. No matter how much I love someone, I won’t allow it.

That is what we must all strive for, to find our own strengths. Good luck and God bless you in your journey.

Lilygirl,

Your post reminds me so much of how I felt with the Bad Man. I think we had the same kind of Bad Man. He did all those mind twisting tricks.

I have a rule of thumb now. I am very careful who I let speak into my life about me and who I am. I listened to the Bad Man because he was a former Minister but it didn’t take long before I noticed his behavior was off. He was beating me up emotionally. I was so unsure of myself but there was still that little voice inside that said it wasn’t right. But his voice was louder than mine. So, I listened.

This experience forced me to strengthen and fortify that inner sense of self. I wasn’t sure of who I was and so I let him tell me. He told me, “You can’t see how you are.” I had had revelations in the past where I realized things about myself, things I hadn’t “seen” before and so, when he said this to me, I was open to it. But even so, I should have know better… a person that is trying to help you isn’t going to call you a scumbag. Come on now!

It did not take long for his critiques of me to veer far from reasonable… and I knew it. But, like you said,

“I feel like he is the only one who can make me feel better PRECISELY because he is the one who made me feel this bad.”

I kept wanting to walk away but with spirit and my self worth in tact. I wanted him to admitt I was not all the bad things he said. I tried every angle to get away. I tried saying, “Hey, maybe we just aren’t a match.” but he would not let me leave in one whole piece.

I did have to settle for limping home.

I learned so much from this. I can’t say that I have a lot of faith in men these days. Bad Man was the first man in years to pay so much attention to me that that alone made it difficult to walk away from. I think a BM knows this instintively.

I know that I deserve more and I deserve better but I don’t know that there is man out there that will do this.

I guess the lesson is I must treat MYSELF to more and treat MYSELF better. I do that now by saying “No” to men that are offering little but want to take my best from me.

To Free,

I didn’t imagine that my dresser could make anyone but me cry.

I hope your tears mean that you can celebrate some of your own progress.

On July 4th, I was chatting with someone that lost their home in one of the fires in CA. He seemed so okay with it. I felt a kinship with him and I also thought… Wow… with my plastic containers in the closet and my hand me down dresser, I own more than he does right now.

Losing my heart (once to the Good Man and then to the Bad Man), and my jobs and my things… it has given me a richer perspective on life.

I feel my wisdom teeth coming in.

Thanks guys, you are getting me through this holiday weekend – it has been a long one.

Aloha, it is a comfort to know that there is a light at the end of the tunnel, and a pretty nice dresser too.

I think when I post and when I talk to friends I tend to emphasize the horrible things he did without talking about how he soothed the damage he did. That was the important aspect to keeping me hooked.

How he knocked me down, picked me up, kissed my wounds and then knocked me down again.

He became my rescuer from the pain that he gave me. That is how he twisted me into depending on him more and more. He controlled EVERYTHING.

That is what they do. The times they are kind and generous and loving are as good as the times they are cruel and controlling and abusive are bad.

When they are good they are very very good and when they are bad they are horrid.

That is the cycle. That is the cycle of abuse. He builds and builds until he blows and destroys me and then he soothes the pain he inflicted on me.

Sometimes I could see it coming. I knew he was working up to deliver a ‘punishment.’

But all the while, he appears human. He appears to be struggling with it. I always told him he is the man who beats the crap out of his wife and then brings her flowers in the hospital and cries at her bedside.

He would cry and speak the language of a fresh start. He would plead with me not to give up on him. He would use my goodness to hold me with him, that I was reluctant to walk away from someone who needed me.

I can’t seem to get people to understand that this was not obvious, it was not like he came up and called me a worthless piece of crap.

He did it not as a man who came up and beat me up, he did it out of ‘love’ out of trying to improve me, out of trying to get me to be a better person…HA.

It is like you said Aloha:

“He told me, “You can’t see how you are.” I had had revelations in the past where I realized things about myself, things I hadn’t “seen” before and so, when he said this to me, I was open to it.”

So true.

I WAS open to it. Maybe there were things about me that caused people pain and he was the first person to have the ‘courage’ to tell me about. it??? My husband of 10 years had just left me for another woman when my son was 3 months old – so maybe I DID drive him away with the “way” I am.

I was open to hearing criticism, and like any human being, was open to looking at myself and making changes.

That – if you ask me – is not a weakness. It is a strength. The ONLY human beings not open to looking inward, evaluating themselves and making appropriate changes ARE PSYCHOPATHS.

That is the quality he saw in me that he robbed. That he manipulated.

But I am not going to change ME. He tried. My goodness, my openness to looking at myself and my behavior ARE ME. He used those good qualities to abuse me, control me and hurt me.

Because I am that way, I did not welcome, entice or open myself up to be abused. I honestly was just plain naive. I thought I could tell a bad person by their looks.

Someone who could break my ribs wore a dirty white tank top T-shirt. Someone who would twist my mind danced around a basement with wild eyes and stretch pants on.

I didn’t think an abuser would come from one of the most wealthy and respected families around. I didn’t think abusers knew art, and music and social graces.

I didn’t think an abuser could brush the hair from my eyes and pick my son up and hug him. I didn’t think he could be good at times, and that we would have passion that I never knew existed.

I didn’t think he would take me to dinner at the country club.

I thought if he was abusive we would go out on a date and he would get mad and hit me.

This guy didn’t. I would have rathered he beat me every day of my life. It would have been obvious then. Those wounds would heal easier.

It isn’t as simple as everyone wants it to be. It isn’t as simple as I want it to be. I thought bad guys wore black.

They don’t. They wear Diesel jeans and Patagonia shirts. They are runners and golfers and hoteliers. They drive nice cars, they ski like a champion. They have lots of friends who send them invitations to parties.

They light fires on cold winter nights, cuddle and drink wine.

One night I was on my knees in tears, begging him to tell me the truth about why he was doing this to me, why he was being so cruel.

He reached up for a wine glass. Poured himself a drink. Swirled. Sniffed. Held it up to the light.

While I was on the floor, sobbing.

Holding the glass in the air, he toasted himself.

“To me,” he said. “I am really a great guy.”

That was the last time we were together.

I know you guys think I need to change, but I am telling you – I am not giving up one speck of WHO I AM because he decided to rape my mind.

That is like telling the victim of a random shooting at a convenience store that they should have seen the gun and gotten away.

It is never that simple, easy or controlled.

He didn’t pick me because I was weak. He didn’t see me as a weak member of the herd. He picked me because of my goodness.

Anyone who knows one of these creeps knows they are forever looking for a ‘dream girl.’

One who will look beautiful on his arm, never complain, never have a need. In short, a stepford wife.

In the beginning, I was the answer to the problems in his life – why? Because the problems in the relationships before me were never his fault – ONLY THE FAULT OF THE WOMAN HE WAS WITH. She never turned out to be perfect.

But when he first met me, in his mind, I would be that perfect girl.

That’s how his thinking went.

So here I come along. Beautiful, happy, full of life, love and trust and loyalty. PERFECT.

“See mom? This is the girl who is going to do it for me. This is the girl who I can marry. See mom? I can do it! This is the girl I have been waiting for my whole life. See mom?”

The trouble is, I can’t stay a stepford wife, or Barbie. I am human, I will have needs, I do have needs, I do cry. I do have bad hair days. I can’t always admire him when he is breaking my ribs….

All of a sudden, because I don’t live up to his expectations, he turns on me. He can’t say, ‘Mom, I did it again. I screwed up another relationship.’

So he has to turn ME into the psychopath. Into the nutcase. Into the jealous bitch, into the one who is crazy. It’s a compulsive cycle that he cannot break.

He feels entitled to abuse me, but I am not allowed to stand up for myself. If I do, I am crazy. I am not then perfect.

He is impulsive, can’t think anything through. One day he tells everyone he loves me. The next I am a crazy bitch. The next I am the best thing that ever happened to him. The next he breaks my jaw.

The times when he begs me back – I think one thing happens. Sam Vaknin – the self-proclaimed Narcissist – got this right I think –

When he sees how much I sacrificed, how hard I worked, how much abuse I took just to stay with him in this relationship – but eventually even I left him, then who will be able to stay with him?

If I couldn’t do it, who can then? What woman will work this hard to stay with him?

All of a sudden – PANIC hits him. He fears he is destined to be alone.

So he begs me back.

UNLESS – he meets a girl in the meantime and he can start all over. Sometimes he meets her and still begs me back. Two strings in the water then.

It is difficult for him though, to go through that honeymoon stage with the new girl – where he is the caring, all giving, loving wonderful dream come true. It is a tough act for him, so he’d rather not do it.

He’d rather call me and use the mind control crap he has already worked to implant into my brain. Way easier than acting like a loving human being.

I remember once in the very beginning weeks of our relationship he said that “one woman would call me controlling.”

I said ‘Controlling? You are the LEAST controlling person I have ever met. What was wrong with that woman? She must be crazy.’

At that moment, I was his dream girl. Somewhere out there today, a girl is saying that about me. That is the only reason he isn’t calling me now.

But sooner or later she will turn out to be imperfect. He will remember how I loved him and sacrificed and tried. I will again be perfect and she will be dirt.

Whoever he is with is then dirt. Whoever leaves him is perfect.

Just like he felt when he was a baby whenever his mom would ignore him.

He ‘knows’ deep down that he is unlovable, after all, his mother didn’t. If she didn’t love him, well no one will.

He is sure no woman will love him so he drives them away, because he knows they will leave him anyway. But this way he controls everything about how, why and when it happens.

This had nothing to do with ME. I am just the woman he happened to stumble on. I just happened to be a really GOOD woman.

Almost perfect in fact.

Dear Lilygirl,

If you think that any of us think you should stop being YOU, then you are totally wrong there. Quite frankly, that is what we all have to do–BE OURSELVES and LOVE OURSELVES. Sure, I have made some changes for the better–but I am STILL ME, in fact, MORE ME THAN I HAVE EVER BEEN. I no longer let anyone disrespect me and not take action. I no longer let people use and abuse me and continue to trust them.

If someone makes a comment about something I have done, I try to very logically and rationally see if what they say is true or not–but I no longer accept their word blindly like I did.

I feel good about setting boundaries, and am gaining confidence that that boundary setting is protective of ME.

No my dear Lilygirl, I would never want you to “change” from being you. Your caring and goodness is YOU, and that is part of you that is what makes you YOU and SPECIAL. The psychopath picked you as a victim because you DO CARE for others. YOu do have a conscience.

I am still a caring person, but I have taken back my POWER FOR OTHERS TO HURT ME by learning to set boundaries for people in my life. So I can be caring and not make myself vulnerable to those who would abuse that caring and goodness within me. ((hugs))))

OxD –

Thank you! I am relieved, I keep hearing that message again and again – that the kind of person I am is wrong – too weak, too nice, too caring too good.

I just read somewhere the other day about “codependence – when caring becomes a disease.”

I honestly think we need more codependence in this world then – if that is indeed what it is.

I am so sick and tired of hearing that my virtues are what cursed me to this. I have heard it from counselor after counselor…

I have boundaries. I always have had them.

This creep knew how to get around them. I am no match, nor will I ever be – a match for a predator who has practiced his whole life on how to prey on others and get around their boundaries.

I am dead meat for someone intent on harming me that way.

I will continue to keep my boundaries and know who I am, but I am no match for this kind of person.

I could have had every boundary in the world, but his abuse was so hidden and insidious that it was nearly impossible to identify what he was doing, let alone explain it or understand what he was doing to me.

It was like he was putting rat poison in my food, but too little for me to ever taste it or know it was there. And all the while I was happy he was cooking me dinner every night. I would end up thanking him for poisoning me.

No boundary in the world could have prevented that. I was not stupid or weak or codependent for not even giving it a thought that he was poisoning me.

I guess I have lived a charmed life because I never ever knew someone could say they loved me and do this to me. But now I know.

I was thinking earlier…we would be together and he’d sing little songs.

One of them I remember went…. ‘What was I thinking…?’ and another went… ‘I met a girl I’d like to know better, but I’m already with someone…’

Both are popular tunes, ones that you might hear on the radio and sing over and over to yourself…but then again, he was singing them while we were together…I would hear them and it would play with my head.

If I dared ask him why he was singing them, he would twist it around on me and call me paranoid.

What? I can’t even sing a song to myself with you? You’re nuts.

If I even got a taste of disrespect or abuse that was obvious, I would have been out of there – as I have done my ENTIRE life, whether it has been a job, or a friendship or anything. I never stayed around long enough to see the real damage they can do.

Now I know this kind of evil person exists and can be walking around with me, holding my hand and telling me they love me. Never, ever in my life before, have I known that people can be so two-faced.

I think learning that horrible people can function and even succeed in life is the lesson that I needed to learn.

I have a small fortune invested in self-help books scattered here at my feet. Most were a complete waste of money. I found my answers in two places – Kathy Krajco and Lundy Bancroft – and also from the people like us who have lived it.

But most of the other stuff I have read has been total B.S. and I finally have given myself permission NOT to take it in just because someone with a PhD or MD. or anything told me so.

Actually, having lived through this I AM THE EXPERT – not the person who has read about this in a psychology book. Who is this person to advise me?

Yes, this is a new boundary. Not to trust mental health professionals with my mental health. I imagine many of them are narcissists who sit in judgement of others who come to them weakened.

Even with my ‘expert’ status in having gone through this, I never, ever feel smart, important, or righteous enough to tell another person what to do.

I will offer my experience, and they can take it or leave it. But I hope I never, ever, sit in judgement of someone who does it differently.

We all need to make our own way through this, and as we do, we are picking up pieces of what will eventually be the big picture.

I am just trying to offer what I can, mostly through the mistakes I’ve made in this, to hopefully save someone some agony.

That is what this is. Pure agony.

Lilygirl,,

DANGER DANGER DANGER.

“He knocked me down, picked me up, kissed my wounds and then knocked me down again.”

GAME ON! This is fun for a pathological partner.

“He didn’t pick me because I was weak. “He didn’t see me as a weak member of the herd. He picked me because of my goodness.”

He picked you because you have no boundaries. Don’t feel bad. I didn’t have boundaries either and I am practicing them everyday now and it’s hard to go against my internal “nice” wiring. “Nice” does not have to equal no boundaries. I am learning this now.

“I know you guys think I need to change, but I am telling you ”“ I am not giving up one speck of WHO I AM because he decided to rape my mind.”

Don’t think of it as changing Lilygirl. Think of it growing. The first person that is responsible for taking care of your well being is you. You can have “goodness” and still be good to yourself. Throwing yourself in front of the bus to save your pathological partner, especially when he is driving the bus (or starting the fire) is not wise. This is not the definition of love that you want your son to learn… and the Bad Man is not your son either. He is a grown man and he was immensely enjoying torturing you.

“It is difficult for him though, to go through that honeymoon stage with the new girl ”“ where he is caring, all giving, loving wonderful dream come true. It is a tough act for him, so he’d rather not do it.”

No. He loves this and it is easy for him. He does this for fun. It’s a set up where he gets to see you fall before the fall. He gets women to fall for him by being everything they ever wanted and then they fall on their face. FUN FUN FUN! It is no more difficult for him to be this way than it is for you to be the good, kind, loving person that you are. It is his nature to be this way. This is who he is.

“Just like he felt when he was a baby, whenever his Mom would ignore him. He “knows deep down that he is unlovable, after all, his mother didn’t. If she didn’t love him, well, no one will.”

BULL SHIT ALERT!

PITY PLAY 101.

“This had nothing to do with ME. I am just the woman he happened to stumble on. I just happen to be a really GOOD woman.”

Here is what it had to do with you. You were the kind of woman that would put up with it. It is not your fault that he ACTED THE WAY HE ACTED… but it is because of your lack of boundaries that he selected you. And it’s very likely that he tested your boundaries early on, even if it was in some small barely perceptible way… such as being late and offering no apology, or doing a no-show, no call. Am I right? Think hard now, Lilygirl. And a man like him will of course select someone that is a “good woman.” It helps him keep up the facade. He VERY CAREFULLY selected you.

It can be tempting to tell yourself that you were the nicest, the smartest, the best catch, the sexiest.. of all the women that “left” him. First, think of it this way. They escaped him. Second, it is very likely that all of those women are a lot like you and me. They are your sisters as we are.

I hope my words have not offended you today. If they do, they won’t in a few months. Keep reading.

I detect in your story the following:

1.Pity Play
2.Push Pull
3.Manipulation
4.Lack of any real remorse.
5.Emotional Battering, Terrorizing, Degrading, Belittling
6.Lack of Impulse Control
7.History of Failed Relationships.
8.Spin Doctoring
9.Narcissism

Just to name a few…

Keep trudging forward, Lilygirl.

There’s a beaten up old dresser waiting for you!

This was in response to your 2nd to last post… I don’t have time to read the new one but just keep considering boundaries… at what point did you realize it is not right for him to treat you this way? I nderstand “getting around boundaries.” I didn’t think I would let something like this happen to me either. But I did. Why… must go make a pizza.

XO Aloha

P.S. Read this essay for more explanation.
http://www.obgyn.net/displayarticle.asp?page=/yw/articles/Romeopart5

Dear Lilygirl,

You believe that you had boundaries. What were those boundaries?

You say you had no way of knowing that he was a psychopath because he wasn’t physically beating you.

Yet, you admitted that you put your cats to sleep because he didn’t like cats.

He told you that you were such a bad person that you even thought of taking your own life to quit causing pain to your son, to the Psychopath etc.

You also indicated that you can’t stop him if he shows back up at your door, that you dont’ have the strength or power to keep him out of your life…

You say he called you paranoid (names) but at the same time you say if you had gotten even a hint of disrespect you would have been out of there. Name calling isn’t a “hint” of disrespect? He “calls me a crazy bitch”–that’s not disrespect? Then the next day you are perfect, and the next day back to crazy bitch–you didn’t get a hint of disrespect or dysfunction from that?

I am very confused here.

What do YOU think is the way to heal yourself?

Who do you think is responsible for stopping him from hurting you?
Lilygirl, I am in no way trying to come down on you, but sometimes the kindest thing we can do for others is to point out the inconsistencies in our ways of thinking. Believe me, my dear Lilygirl, Aloha and I have both been in the depths of despair, trying to make “sense” out of what is NONSENSE, and we have both been involved in trying desperately to “normalize” our Psychopaths—but they are not normal. Their thinking isn’t. They twist reality until WE can no longer see truth from lies, truth from falsehood. Reality from fantasy.

The bottom line is that EACH of us must save ourselves. I can’t save Aloha and she can’t save me, and the two of us together can’t save you. ONLY YOU can protect yourself from him. Only you can heal yourself. We can and will be here to be supportive of you, maybe even some “tough love” at times, but you know yourself, as a parent, that sometimes telling a child what they “want to hear” isn’t what is best ffor them in the long run, so we tell them the truth even if it hurts them for the moment. Telling a child that their beloved pet has died is painful for both the parent and the child, but it gives the child a chance to learn about death, about grief, and about life. It gives the child a chance to grow.

Telling you less than the honest truth isn’t helpful for you or for me either, but anything I have said here is meant totally in the intention of kindness, caring, and supporting your healing. Until I was confronted by the fact that the boundaries I THOUGHT I had were not real, were not protective, and that I was enabling others to hurt, use and abuse me, and until recognized these truths about myself, I couldn’t heal, I couldn’t grow, I couldn’t stop the pain. I had to learn and grow in order not to continually be a victim. Now I am more aware of abuses, people who show “red flags” that signal that they are abusers or would be if I allowed them to be.

By keeping these people OUT OF MY LIFE, not allowing them to come back in at will, by going NO contact, I am a powerful person.

(((hugs))))) Prayers and concern for you Lily girl. Oxy

Aloha –

God bless you sister. I read all five parts of Romeo a long time ago. I like it.

I know what you are saying and I understand and you have nailed him.

I know who and what he does, is and always will be. I don’t think I am the best girl that he ever had, in fact, I have LONGED to have lunch with the past girlfriends. I’d bet we’d have a blast.

For a long time, when I would think that my ‘love’ would save him, I thought to myself, no, there is nothing special about your love that will succeed where other women’s love has failed. You can’t love him ‘better’ than they did.

I hope you read my second post after the pizza. I am respectfully disagreeing with you on the boundary issue. For a long time I thought I had some control over what happened to me, but I realize now that I didn’t.

I think of it this way – I feel MUCH safer if I believe it was weak boundaries that I CAN STRENGTHEN so this doesn’t happen to me again.

I feel more in control then. It’s like getting an ADT system installed after your house is burglarized. It is a way that you can control a situation that has left you vulnerable.

It might be too scary to think that this happened to me and I really had no control over it.

Sometimes terrible things happen to us for reasons we can’t control. It is a scary thought for me, but one that allows me to give up trying to control this situation.

I can’t control it. I can do what I can to protect myself, but if there is someone with intent to do me harm with no boundaries of his or her own, there is not much I can do to stop them.

I will always loose in a fight with someone who will sink to any level to win. Who doesn’t let up when the other person is on the ground. Who kicks someone when they are down.

I would lose that fight because I am a fair fighter.

They will get me one way or another. The most I can do is stay away from them.

But he can be out there tonight, still calling me crazy. Still destroying my character and my reputation. Still planting images in other peoples’ minds of ‘crazy me.’

There is not one thing I can do – no boundary will protect me from that.

And people will fall for it too. Juicy gossip. They love it. Doesn’t matter to them if I have lived an updstanding, altruistic life. They will fall for what he says just to stay on his good side – for indeed, someday he could turn on them as well.

So he can continue to abuse me as long as he wants. Now if I dispute the change my grocer gives me, I am crazy.

If I stand up for my son when his best friends’ mother ruins his birthday – I can’t get along with anyone.

Now if I want to address bullying in my son’s grade school, I am that girl who overreacts to everything.

See how it works? He isn’t even here and is still putting rat poison in my food.

Character assasination is about the worst thing you can do to a person. He assasinated my character to me and to the world.

How do you fight that? By going around telling people you aren’t that way? That you really don’t overreact? That you really were abused behind closed doors?

When I have lost my temper and asserted my self-worth – my boundaries – I was assasinated more. He would ensure he drove me to madness so I would loose it in front of witnesses.

All it took was a few times. Now the seeds are planted.

My only redemption in this was reaching out to those former girlfriends. I did. I asked if he did this to them too. I got one to answer me, yes, he did.

That is the only way I could see out of this. The only way I knew it wasn’t me.

Did you ever see the movie Gaslight? It is the story of what he did to me. That scene where she insists on her boundaries and demands to go to the recital at her friend’s home, and without saying a word, during the recital, he drives her to loose it in front of everyone?

When I first saw that scene, I broke down in the most horrible crying spell I have ever had. I still break down just thinking about it.

I have felt that pain so many times.

That is what he did to me. He would buy me earrings and then hide them and tell me I lost them and make me feel ashamed.

He would tell me something and then deny he said it the next day. He would have a way to back it up, and there was no way I could argue.

All the while, behind my back, he was destroying me, my character.

He would play games with my head, making inuendos about bumping into past girlfriends. He would whisper a different name in my ear in the heat of passion, but the name would be very close to mine. If I said anything, I was crazy and imagining things.

You guys don’t have to tell me what to do. What I could use right now is some validation of my reality. I need people to tell me that he was at fault and that he is 100 percent responsible for doing this to me.

And that I had no control over it. I was a victim and he was intent on hurting me. I am not ashamed of being a victim. This was a crime. I was a victim. Period.

Aloha, I LOVED your list of what you see him doing to me. I need more of that.

You guys have to understand, I have gone though this alone, with ABSOLUTELY no one to support me. Plus I have raised a WONDERFUL little boy. He is so wonderful that the mothers’ of his classmates beg me to allow their kids to play with him, as he is such a good influence on them. I am so proud of him.

Talk about strong boundaries. I have them, or else I wouldn’t have gotten out of this alive.

I crawled out on my belly with my mind twisted in knots because I have boundaries that told me, even after I’ve been brainwashed, that something is wrong.

Nothing but my boundaries got me out of it.

My boundaries have always been strong. That is why I didn’t allow him to drive me to suicide. The abuse came because he is abusive, not because I allowed it because I had weak boundaries.

I am sorry, but I will never accept that. I fought tooth and nail not to allow it. But when I fought, the abuse got worse. My character got more assasinated. I was degraded into submission.

Sometimes a woman will submit to rape rather than be killed. Does that mean she allowed the rape? Does it mean that she could have prevented it? Or does it mean she did what she had to do to keep from being killed.

I did what I had to do to keep from being killed. That means a person is strong. Not weak.

I had no control over what he did to me. None.

Now I just need someone to understand why I did what I did, not to tell me that I was wrong to do what I did.

Think of my mind as being raped. I didn’t want it to be, I didn’t hand it over to be raped. But I was in danger, and I did what I had to do to survive it and get away.

A woman who stays with a husband who beats her is often doing what she has to do to stay alive, because often if she leaves he will kill her.

Or he will kill her children. The courts force visitation with a dad, abusive or not.

Maybe she feels they are safer not being alone with him for unsupervised visitation. Maybe he whispered in her ear that if she leaves him, he will rape her daughter on the first visit.

The father may or may not rape the daughter, but what a wonderful way for him to keep his wife from leaving him. MIND CONTROL.

No one knows why people do what they do. There is more to this than weak or bad boundaries.

For the mother who endures beatings rather than allow her daughter to be raped by her father, her boundaries don’t match the ‘accepted’ boundaries of staying away from abusers.

Her boundaries allow her to protect her child and endure what she must endure until it is safe to get away. But I would never blame the mother for staying with an abuser because I understand what she is up against.

It is about more than boundaries and just deciding what we will and won’t accept. For me, it was way more complicated.

God Bless you too Oxy.

You were posting while I was writing my seventh novel of the day.

I appreciate the tough love. I am not blind to the different ways of thinking about this.

I am not saying I WILL give in to him when he comes around again, I am saying I am doing my best to prepare to do battle with him, knowing that I could loose because he is SO much better at controlling me than I am.

I must just stay away because if he gets to me, I am a goner.

Right now, this thinking for me is as strong as I’ve ever been. It is working for me.

A lot of it came from Kathy Krajco. And as I have said so many times before, she literally gave me permission not to think the way everyone tells me I should think.

For the first time, she validated what I had been feeling and thinking on my own. Lundy Bancroft did too. Finding their messages has finally made me strong enough to believe that I am strong, not weak.

I was the victim of a crime. It’s my opinion that we all were.

I didn’t love a psychopath. That book title bothers me. That’s like saying “Women Who Love Rapists.”

I was controlled and brainwashed by a psychopath. Nothing about this had to do with love. I would prefer that title to be “Women who are Controlled and Brainwashed by Psychopaths.”

For me, I am frustrated a lot by a lot of the stuff I have read and believed for so long. It is the belief that I had some control over this that kept me in this. It was very dangerous thinking.

I had no control. I escaped by sheer grit. I almost didn’t. I still will never be able to walk down the street and not look over my shoulder. He’s out there.

Boundaries don’t protect women who are killed every day by controlling boyfriends. The most dangerous time for an abused woman is when she leaves an abuser.

PFA’s, the police, the courts and not even a guard dog protects her then.

If he wants to get her, he will.

Dear Lilygirl,

Validating your theory about it being 100% “his fault” isn’t something I can do, because it isn’t what I believe. What I believe is this.

What they (in my case multiple Ps) did to me is not right, not fair, and is 100% their responsibility for doing it.

The reason they were able to do this for long periods of time is because I did not set appropriate boundaries and enforce them.

“Crap on me once, shame on you, crap on me TWICE, shame on me.”

I held on to a malignant hope that I could love them enough, help them enough, do enough for them that they would stop hurting me and love me back. That some way I could “fix” the situation by whatever it was that they wanted me to do to show them that I loved them.

When they disrespected me, I ‘forgve them” and restored trust, when they betrayed that trust, I tried it again, and again and AGAIN and A*G*A*I*N and so on. I did not set boundaries, I kept pushing the boundaries back and back and back.
Sure, I told myself I was just trying to “be fair” and all the other crap I told myself to excuse the fact that their ACTIONS were anything but loving or good. I was the one that hadn’t lied, but I was the one HURTING. I was not the one that had cheated, but I was the one HURTING. Over and over I went up and down up and down, trying to figure out some way to make the pain go away—but eventually I realized the only way to make the PAIN GO AWAY is to make the psychopath GO AWAY.

You are right, boundaries don’t protect women who are killed by controlling boyfriends, but the LACK of boundaries in the early relationship where the abuse starts slowly and they continue to allow it lets the relationship build up and up and up until the boyfriend/lover/husband crosses the ULTIMATE boundary and kills them.

i Have ULTIMATE control of who I let into my circle of “trust”—and it is a priviledge to be in my circle of trust, to be close to me. To be my friend. Sure my boundaries won’t protect me from stranger rape, or someone breaking into my home, but among those people that I know, that I am involved with, that I consider part of my “circle” –those people will DEMONSTRATE that they care for me, that they respect me, that they respect others, that they are honest, upfront, not coniving and controlling. LONG BEFORE THEY are INSIDE my circle.

By watching for “red flags”—the signs that someone is disrespectful, dishonest, has anger issues, dysfunctional, etc. and when these “red flags” are seen, excluding that person from my inner circle, I am going to avoid having intimate friendships with people who are likely to abuse me (or others)

Many times when you set boundaries you have to be prepared that the relationship will END right then and there. But–by the same token if the relationship ends because I will not allow someone to use or abuse me (cross a boundary) then I haven’t lost a thing of any value.

I had some dear friends who are “down on their luck” financially and also with poor health. They are full time living in an RV motor home. I let them park their motor home out here (they paid their own electric etc) but they had two dogs, both pit bulls that were dangerous to other animals, especially small animals. Normally they kept the dogs on chains near their RV but the dogs started to get loose on a regular basis and they would show up at my front door. I have a little 18 pound terrier who thinks he is a 150 pounds and will attack anything in his territory. I asked my friends to keep their dogs under control 100% of the time because I didn’t want my dog killed in his own front yard by their dogs getting loose and coming over to my house.

I got excuses, but no action, so I finally set a very firm boundary. Keep your dogs up or I will kill them if the attack my dog. They agreed to buy a pen for their dogs. They didn’t buy a pen for their dogs. I finally told them that they were going to have to leave because they had not kept their word, and I was not responsible for their dogs, THEY WERE.

I was prepared for the relationship to end in a shouting match, which, thankfully it didn’t. But the boundary had to be set because they were not responsible for their dogs. I didn’t like having to set a boundary, or to put such horrific consequences to it, but on the other hand, I was not going to let my own dog be endangered by their irresponsible behavior by having dogs which were dangerous to other animals and NOT controlling them. It didn’t seem important to them that they were putting MY dog in danger, or that this was MY farm, that I was allowing them to live here rent free because I cared about them.

All they had to do to continue to live here was to control their dogs in a responsible manner. I dont’ think that was a great deal to ask, but obviously it was not something that they were willing to do.

People will treat us the way that we expect and allow them to treat us. If I had not said anything about this because I was “afriad to hurt their feelings or make them mad” sooner or later I would have gone to let my dog out to go pee and he would have faced one of the pit bulls head on and been dead before I could reach for my gun. It was their choice to respect my boundary or to leave, and they chose to leave.

I’ve never had any problem with acquaintences in setting boundaries, but with people close to me, I’;ve always had trouble setting boundaries, but now it is ‘EQUAL OPPORTUNITY” BOUNDARIES.

There isn’t any way you can protect yourself from the slander your X does, and I have found the best way with that is to just ignore it, and prove to people by your behavior that he is lying. Sometimes that works and sometimes it doesn’t, but it isn’t anything you can control.

I’m going to focus on the things I can CONTROL and one of those things is how I ALLOW people to treat me. I no longer associate with my mother because of the way she has treated me, and I realized that it had been that way my entire life, not just lately, when it got worse. It hurts to realize that your entire life your mother has manipulated you and programmed you with false “precepts” in order to control you. But, once I realized the situation, I set boundaries. She crossed them, and I removed her from my life. That’s the only control I have. NO CONTACT. She can say anything she wants to about me, or believe anything, but I VALIDATE MYSELF, because I know I am not the one who was abusive, or lied, or put her at risk for murder. It is HER LOSS. I was a good daughter, a loving daughter, and she betrayed me, lied to me. Why would I WANT to associate with anyone who would do that to me? I wish it wasn’t that way, but it IS. Not my choice, but I accept it as reality. What IS.

I am focusing on healing me, loving me. Those that don’t love me don’t need to be in my life. That is what I CAN CONTROL.

Lilygirl,

Don’t get hung up on semantics. No one is saying that you are responsible for his behavior. No one is saying you can control him. But you can control yourself as Oxy just stated. Here’s how you do it. NO CONTACT WHATSOEVER.

That dear girl is a clear boundary. Can he break into your house? Sure he can. That’s not about boundaries… that’s about a loose window latch or whatever.

You are swinging wildly with this thing about what a boundary is and you are being stubborn and missing the point. He did what he did. You allowed it to some degree.

Yes, the way they use control and mind games IS complicated. There is no doubt about that. You asked if we understand what it’s like to be made to look crazy. Yes. We do. You explained “see how it works”.. we know how it works. We know. That’s why we are here.

You left with your last scrap of self preservation… I get that. So did I.

Try to listen. We know your story. Tell it if it helps you but understand that we know it already inside and out.

It is criminal what they do and we are victims to a certain degree. And I agree that abusers don’t “look” like most people think. Now I know more than ever that they look like Ministers, a refined gentleman, a Police Officers, Doctors, the cute guy at the gym. I have learned a hell of a lot about abusers and I hope one day I will work with victims of Domestic violence and other abuse victims.

But, there is always a sign and you were passing the signs as if they were not there.. so did I, by the way, because I wanted my dreams to come true and he made it seem like he would make them come true.

The Bad Man acted as though he was just trying to help me see myself too but you know what, I am old enough to know that a person that is trying to help you, doesn’t call you an F—ing Bitch, or scumbag, loser, sleezy cheesy, asshole. (Sorry Donna… I am making a point.) I KNEW THIS. But I allowed it more than once. I allowed it over and over. There were many things he said/did that should have been 1 strike and you are OUT!!!

I accepted behavior from him that was not second chance worthy behavior. There are things that are unforgiveable to me as in… YOU HAVE DONE “X” AND THAT IS UNACCEPTABLE SO YOU ARE NO LONGER WELCOME IN MY LIFE.

Lilygirl, if it makes you feel better to say that it was your boundaries that saved you, then fine. I will admit my boundaries are fairly shakey. I can be manipulated. I work with troubled teen age girls who abuse me and manipulate all the time. This is a good job for me right now. I get to practice and practice all the time. I need this. I tell them “No” to something and then the next thing I know, they are trying to get it by asking another way. Or they are trying to get it by being sweet. Or they are trying to get it by being abusive to me and appealing to my need to be liked. The thing is, none of these tactics should work on me if it really is in my best interest to say “NO.”

“No” is a boundary.

“I am not saying I WILL give in to him when he comes around again, I am saying I am doing my best to prepare to do battle with him, knowing that I could loose because he is SO much better at controlling me than I am.”

All you have to be good at to “win” is to not open the door. NO CONTACT.

We NEVER win any “battle” we play with a Sociopath or a Pathological. I have said it before… put down your bat and go home. Forfeit the game. This is how you win. You will not win verbal battles and you will not be able to prove to others that he is the one that is nuts, not you. This part has got to be one of the WORST elements of the whole thing.

For the record… I HATE LOOKING CRAZY!!!! This nearly drove me out of my mind. See how that works?

It’s best if you don’t say goodbye or explain why. You just go silent and disappear. Treat him like a potted houseplant as Beverly says.

If you feel you will be in physical danger for any reason, call a women’s shelter and get advice.

Okay my dear… I have to go to bed now. We do know what you are going through. We do know.

I admire the help you are offering Lilygirl, Oxy & Aloha, but I think this isn’t actually the time for “tough love”. Not yet, anyway.

She was with the soul sucker for 5 years! It’s only been 4 months since she last spoke with him. That a long flipping time to spend being abused, manipulated, controlled by a psycho. Lilygirl is expressing her thoughts, her ideas, her feelings regarding where she is now in her healing. 2 weeks from now she will probably have a completely different perspective, one that is beneficial to her own growth and recovery.

By her admitting how vulnerable she considers herself to be at this stage, takes a lot of courage. It’s one of the hardest things to admit to another person, especially after the psycho hungered for that vulnerability from her and used it for his own selfish good time.

I really think we should curtail our advice to her and just let her speak her mind. Let her take as long as she needs to purge his malicious evil from her precious heart and soul. We are here to offer comfort, support, a loving, caring shoulder for her to cry on, not advice unless she asks for it.

We should listen and learn from her experience by saying…”hey, Lilygirl, I’m here if you need to talk. What ever you need to say is ok by me.”

Sometimes we just want to be heard….

Thank you Jane Smith and Free.

I can’t be here now. I know you guys understand why.

I can’t afford to be sent back to the place I just crawled out from.

Thank you for your support. I will do this on my own.

God bless everyone and I am sorry I can’t stay.

Oh, Lilygirl….

I’m here to listen if you decide to visit and share with me. I think you’re absolutely wonderful, doll. And very intelligent, witty, totally brilliant. Please believe in the truth that you are. Don’t let anyone take that away from you. You OWN that truth, babe.

My thoughts and prayers are with you….hug

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