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How do you explain why you stayed with a sociopath?

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Editor’s note: The following was written by the Lovefraud reader who posts as “Seekeroflight.”

How do you explain why you stayed
To someone who saw how badly she treated you
How exhausted you were
Stressed
How do you admit that you saw the monster early on
And yet you stayed
Because the monster was willing to lie
To save face
To threaten, intimidate
How do you explain that you chose to stay
With a monster who shouted, as she kicked your friend out,
Shouted to the cops and half the neighborhood
That he was a “faggot and has AIDS”
He doesn’t…but it doesn’t matter
You aren’t that kind of person
How do you admit that you stayed
With a monster who said
At the dining room table
That she had people she could call
To gang rape that little girl and show her a lesson
A teenage girl
You aren’t that kind of person
How do you explain how many times
You had to beg her not to drive by that house
Of a former friend who made her mad
Day after day,
Night after night, hurling insults out the window
You aren’t that kind of person
The threats that she could set a house on fire
And nobody would ever know
The comments that she had proof she never hit her ex
If she had started even once,
She couldn’t have stopped, she said
And that ex would be dead
How do you explain that you stayed
With someone who hired others
To break into vacant homes and steal things
As they all ridiculed you as you protested
For being the good little Christian
How do you explain that you believed her
The military stories
Still having contacts at the Pentagon
With ways to destroy your whole life
At the snap of her fingers
How do you explain that you stayed
Even with the things you cannot mention
That shocked you, terrified you
How do you explain
That the woman whose lectures
Pushed you to hug the passenger side door
Afraid to move
Too afraid to even open your mouth
As you prayed she’d just hit you and be done
Surely that would be better than the words
That this woman also sometimes made you feel safe
And loved
…as she told you nobody else loved you
Told you what they said about you
Behind your back
Told you how dangerous the world was
You, you naive, sheltered little girl
Reminded you to stay away from other gay people
Because most of them are predators
Bad people
Isn’t that what you learned growing up?
She was older
She was smarter
And you, don’t you know you wouldn’t make it
On your own?
You should be grateful
Your college degree?
Meaningless.
Your religion?
Laughable.
The religious beliefs you were aspiring to?
A girl like you would never get it anyway
So don’t even bother
Your family’s ethnicity?
The butt of her jokes.
How disappointing it was for her to
Get an Amish girl
Who couldn’t cook or clean right
How your ethnicity became a synonym
For dumb
“Oh yeah, she did that because she’s Amish”
How these jokes were told to everyone in public
And in private you were reminded how you didn’t
Fulfill her “librarian” fantasies
You failed
In everything
But insults were
“Just a joke”
So stop being so sensitive, alright?
How do you explain the time in bed
When she put her hands on you
In a way that was rough, unwanted, hurtful
To punish you for a perceived slight
And you weren’t sure which was worse…
Your shock and fear
Or your guilt
How do you explain the time
In the emergency room, as they put in an IV
And it hurt her, and she cried out, made a scene
And grabbed your hair…and pulled, and pulled
You didn’t understand, why not squeeze your hand?
Your arm? It was outstretched to her
You started to wonder if she would
Pull that hair right out of your head
You already knew…
Avoid the questioning looks of the nurses
Avoid making any expression at all
There are the bad things people already know about
Then there is this stuff, and more
How do you explain your fear
That if people really knew
They would hate you
What kind of person stays with someone like that?
Even loves someone like that?
How do you explain how the fear you felt
Makes you hate yourself
For being a coward
I mean, it’s not like she hit you
Or held a gun to your head
The two guns that she had illegally
And liked to show off at every opportunity
The guns she liked to wave around
To intimidate grown men in your dining room
I mean, it’s not like she is some serial killer
Like the ones on TV that she obsessed over
The shows she made you watch for hours
Every
Day
All night long, despite your protests, your nightmares
As she compared herself to the villains and glorified them
All part of her psychological torture
Along with the sleep deprivation
And gaslighting
But she never hit you…
How do you explain the conflict
As she acted like a great humanitarian
Helping strangers
Rescuing dogs
Bad people don’t do that
How do you explain the horror you felt
As you realized her good deeds to others
Was her way of enslaving them
Debts they could never, ever repay to her liking
As she neglected the dogs
And you tried to make up the difference
But it was too much
The image of dying puppies seared into your brain
A reminder of how you always failed
At fixing the messes she created
How do you explain the guilt you feel for lying
Outright, and by omission
About how your relationship really was?
And yet it wasn’t all lies…
How do you explain the good times?
The happy moments?
That you now have to remind yourself
We’re completely false and fake?
How do you explain the guilt you feel
Just being associated with such evil
That you couldn’t stop her from hurting others
Like her evil melted off her
And onto you
As you try to hide it
Under smiles and makeup
Can’t wash it out of your pores
And you can’t just move on
And you can’t just put her out of your mind
Because you were trained methodically
For years
To make her all you thought about
How do you explain how much you still
Need to break your silence
And struggle to do so
As shame traps you
Afraid to leave your house sometimes
A prisoner of your mind
How do you explain how much
You want to beg every person you love
Not to hate you
Because some days you hate you
More than you could ever explain?


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16 Comments on "How do you explain why you stayed with a sociopath?"

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Thanks for sharing this!

Thanks for sharing this! It made me realize that I am a contributor in my own abuse 🙁

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