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Lessons in Life and Love I Learned from a Sociopath

By Paula Carrasquillo

Editor’s note: Paula Carrasquillo is author of “Escaping the Boy My Life with a Sociopath.” Read Lovefraud’s book review.

A few years ago, I found myself in a relationship with a man who demonstrated zero empathy, zero remorse, zero compassion and seemed to lack any inkling of a conscience.

He lashed out at me often, raged and accused me of doing things I never did and of being a person I could never imagine being.

I tried desperately to make him “see the light” of his negative thinking and paranoia. But all of my pleadings and attempts to convince him that he was wrong about my intentions proved futile. The emotional, psychological and spiritual abuse he inflicted simply became more intense as time passed. And once he started emotionally abusing and harming my five-year-old son, I knew I had no choice but to abandon this man.

It was hard for me to give up on him. He seemed so lost and desperate. He was like an infant who had yet to learn the lessons of life and love.

Little did I know that he was a sociopath whose only usefulness was to teach me how not to be in this world.

What kind of crazy person would date a sociopath?

Many of you may be scratching your heads and wondering how I ended up in a relationship with such a person in the first place. It must have been my fault—I chose him after all.

Rest assured, I am not a masochist; if I had known from the onset of the relationship that I would lose myself, I would have stepped away at first glance.

Sociopaths are very charming, manipulative and cunning. As Martha Stout, Ph.D., notes in her book, The Sociopath Next Door, sociopaths are also narcissistic. Like their namesake of myth, Narcissus, narcissists appear to always and forever be gazing lovingly at themselves.

If you interpret Narcissus this way, you would be half correct. Narcissus is always and forever gazing loving at his reflection, not at himself—there is a difference.

A reflection of a person is a distortion; it is not the inner reality and nuances that reveal our nature. The narcissistic sociopath falls in love with a distorted self-image, not his spirit.

Sociopaths hide their true nature from themselves and from everybody else. Instead of being real and sharing their inner fears and shame, sociopaths present to the world an idealized reflection, a projection of who they want us to think they are and of who they desperately wish to be. These projections are mere shadows and imaginings of their surroundings and are composed of nothing real or tangible.

Just as we fail to grasp the ebbing and flowing tides, we fail to grasp the true nature of the sociopath. From victim to victim, the sociopath changes to fit the world’s expectations of him.

How does the sociopath project a self-image to the world that seems so real to us? Although the sociopath commits no time to self-reflection, the sociopath studies and mocks our nature, the nature of good people, daily. Our surface nature, the things we say and do, are what the sociopath uses to fool us.

When we first meet a sociopath, we would never guess he/she is a sociopath. They seem to act like us and think like us and have the same drive as us. We think the sociopath is normal and healthy and filled with the same wonders and imaginings we have.

Why would we ever think the sociopath was a sociopath?

We are easily fooled, because the sociopath has mastered the art of mimicking and reflecting back onto us our behaviors and conditionings, good and bad. We have unknowingly been the personal and collective Pavlov’s dog for all of the millions of sociopaths in the world today. (Think Jodi Arias, Drew Peterson, Scott Peterson, Michelle Michael and Josh Powell; all excellent examples of how society has been fooled by sociopaths who toss our ability to relate and empathize back at us in order to gain our pity and understanding.)

However, the tide is shifting. More and more victims and survivors of sociopaths are coming forward, sharing their stories and bringing awareness to the masses of the existence and prevalence of sociopaths among us. We are learning how to spot these predators, and they aren’t who and what we have been conditioned to believe.

What is a sociopath, exactly?

According to Stout, sociopaths make up 4% of western society. That’s about 1 in 25 people walking around among us without a conscience, without the ability to measure, or care to measure, the morality of their decisions and actions.

Unlike what we read on the television news or see in Hollywood movies, sociopaths aren’t just serial killers and murderers. Rather, they are members of our communities, possibly our mothers and fathers, our doctors, our lawyers, our judges and even our lovers, who seamlessly blend into society with the rest of us.

Dr. Robert D. Hare, Ph.D., author of  Without Conscience: The Disturbing World of the Psychopaths Among Us , has developed a list of 20 sociopathic traits (available on the Key Symptoms page of Lovefraud.com).

Keep in mind that in order for someone to be suspected of being a sociopath and accurately diagnosed, at least 10 of these traits must occur as an all-pervasive, repeated pattern of behavior. More importantly, if and when the individual is called out on any one of these negative behaviors, that person is unaffected by any hurt or harm they have caused. In their minds, their behavior is justified and everyone else is just a bunch of suckers for having been fooled.

Why didn’t you just leave?

I did leave. I left him twice, but both times I was wracked with guilt for abandoning him, so I returned. Regardless of my gut repeatedly telling me to get out and stay out, I ignored my instincts, because I honestly thought he could be “fixed” and that I was the one who could help him.

I was clueless about Hare’s list and had no knowledge of Stout’s book. I did not understand that, as a sociopath, he was incapable of changing his behavior.

I tried. But regardless of my many attempts to meet the demands he placed on me in the relationship, I failed.

He repeatedly accused me of not loving him enough, of cheating on him, of choosing my son before him (like that’s a bad thing), of not paying enough attention to him, of not needing him the way he needed me to need him and of behaving as if I mattered. (But I do matter, right?)

I was a bad mother, a hateful girlfriend, and a disrespectful human being. Imagine the most hateful word you could call someone, and that’s what he called me.

“Whore!”

I gave up.

I avoided social situations in which I had to introduce him to people as my boyfriend. Although no one was able to see through his mask upon first meeting this man, I knew a mask existed and desperately wanted to keep others from the inevitable harm he would cause them once he decided to unmask himself. I wanted to protect others more than I wanted to save myself.

I blamed myself.

As time passed and I listened less and less to my instincts, I became more and more isolated and ashamed of myself. I was ashamed to be with someone who I allowed to control me, someone who lacked care and empathy and who hurt others with impunity. At the same time, I allowed this shame to define my self-worth and self-identity.

Like Narcissus, we see ourselves as a reflection of what and who we are surrounded. When I gazed at my reflection, I could only see the ugliness and darkness inside of me that came from this man’s projections onto me.

Fortunately, unlike Narcissus, we have the ability to change our perspective and unburden ourselves from eternally gazing upon a false sense of self that the sociopath created and presented before us. We have the power within ourselves to reach through the material waters and grasp our spirit and bring it to the surface.

I have no idea what finally took over me and guided me (other than my instincts and the need to keep my son safe), but I finally escaped this man. I left and never returned.

It has taken me nearly two years to regain what was lost: my ability to love myself so I can love others completely.

Along the journey of discovering myself, I gained clarity about life and love that had eluded me my whole life:

The most difficult place to get to in life is a place of self-love. Self-love requires you to care for yourself, respect yourself, take responsibility for yourself, and know yourself. With self-love, we find peace within, which leads to peace without.

I understand now that I needed to experience the sociopath’s darkness in order to find self-love and learn to appreciate the lightness of being.

It’s a lesson I hope I never forget.

Namaste!

 


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55 Comments on "Lessons in Life and Love I Learned from a Sociopath"

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Paula,
Thank you for posting your story.I can relate to trying to “fix the sociopath”;even returning twice to do so.In return,as you said,I felt worse about myself,not better.

You also said “If and when the individual is called out on any one of these negative behaviors, that person is unaffected by any hurt or harm they have caused. In their minds, their behavior is justified…”.How often I called him out on something;yet not only me but family members,and he COULDN’T COMPREHEND that he’d done anything wrong! For ex,he would excitedly tell me about the cute babes in the bikinis a few yards over and I’d ask him how he’d feel if I found a couple of muscle builders and told him about them….that was the only way I could get him to understand how it made me feel! Before I left him,he was talking to a former girlfriend on the phone.I asked him how he’d feel if I got back in contact with one of my former boyfriends?!He would never have allowed that!Yet he expected me to grin and bear it!

Thank you, blossom4th. The entitlement and superiority among sociopaths is so high, it’s comical. (At least it’s comical once we’re on the other side of it that is.) I was not even allowed to have any male friends, regardless if they were past lovers or not. Having a Facebook account was viewed as sinful if it meant I communicated with anyone outside of “our circle” of friends. And when you’re aligned with a sociopath, the circle seems rather large at first, but it slowly shrinks as time goes by. And it’s always those who exit the sociopath’s circle who are accused of that which the sociopath himself is guilty. It’s maddening and incredibly insidious.

Paula,
I often called my husband on what I called a “double standard”.To him it seemed normal.He grew up in a home where his mom worked secularly,but otherwise was a ‘homebody’,whereas his father ran around with friends,and had jobs on the side,that was “nobody’s business”.So my husband thought the way to keep his jealousy and paranoia in control was to keep me busy at home;finally isolated at home.

You said,” And it’s always those who exit the sociopath’s circle who are accused of that which the sociopath himself is guilty” While not having any evidence (and probably never will),I always wondered about his jealousy…I was never unfaithful!

Blossom
My husband was exactly the same way. He is so conceited that the day he was served with the divorce papers he had the nerve to send me an email. In it he said “if you think I am coming home by you filing for divorce you are wrong”. I filed for divorce and he truly thought I did it so he will return home. What are they thinking? Their reality is so distorted. To me it seems unbelievable that someone can function in this world thinking that everyone around them are stupid idiots. Every place my soon to be ex husband worked at, his colleagues and bosses were all idiots. That included generals in the army, Cardiac surgeons and many other highly educated professionals. The only person who was worth anything was him. But that was his thinking. I still hope that one day he will wake up and realize that actually he is not God and he will never be above God.

kaya48,
CONCEIT.It is their trademark!When my husband tried to act innocent and like he didn’t ‘understand’ why I would take him to court~~~my dad had had enough! He gave him an ‘earfull’…said he was surprised he didn’t hang up on him!My husband’s reply was that neither of us can remarry.WHAT WORLD IS HE IN?! I wouldn’t stay with him if he was the ONLY MAN in the world!!!

Hi Paula. Thanks for sharing this article and for all your work towards educating people. I can imagine that it must be exhausting sometimes given the fundamentally wrong preconceptions that most people have towards the covert predators who live among us. I wanted to thank you personally for your online presence, and to let you know that it was something you wrote that helped me to connect the dots between narcissism and sociopathy. I had known for a couple of years that I was dealing with a narcissist. Your halfway there analogy and reference to Dr. Martha Stout’s “the Sociopath Next Door” was just what I needed. After reading that book I soon found Donna’s website and have continued my education. Thanks for providing helpful info. It’s easy to get sidetracked by the less useful info out there. Take care.

Thank you for your thoughtful comment, 4Light2shine. It means so much knowing I was able to spark something inside of you through my writing. That’s really all I wish for… that fewer people who have been struck by sociopaths flail about as long as I did trying to make sense of it all. Donna’s site was very helpful in my awakening stage, as well. None of us deserve to be kept in the dark, and I think I’d feel a lot of guilt if I didn’t share what I learned along the way, even if it means sharing my many, many missteps and struggles. Namaste! ~Paula 🙂

For two years I had a most strange relationship with a man I now know to be a sociopath.He had all the signs. He took money from me and promised to pay, lied openly about everything and when finally I had the courage to ask for my money back he went beserk and threatened my family. He would have the most odd reactions to things, like blaming me for things out of my control, like when the restaurant didnt want to give the money back, he called me names and abused me because of that.He never ever kissed me and hardly ever held my hand,and once when I reached to his hand he threw a public tamtrum. He would fight over the phone, accuse me of cheating, accuse me of being deranged, told me I need a psychiatrist. Out of the blue he would tell me all that was wrong with me or write abusive emails, only to write a loving email again when he needed something or when he was afraid of me leaving him.
Once we went for a day trip and he changed from ‘normal’ to abusive in one second without any reason whatsoever, shaking a fist on my face and threatening me, there was absolutely no reason for that, I was stunned as one minute we were talking normally and next he started abusing me.Getting to the location, he again came back to ‘normal’ and was angry that I was still sad about his behaviour.
He flirted with everything in skirts in any location we went, restaurants, gas stations, pubs, day trips. I have to add that I payed ALL absolutely ALL that we did, he never payed a thing.
In the middle of it all he started seeing another woman, lied to me and to her, came back to see me and went to see her the same day, finally she got tired of him and booted him out, so he tried again with me, saying over the phone ‘buy a bottle of wine that Im coming’ like if nothing happened and I was that stupid to go and buy him a bottle of wine.This time I closed the phone on him forever, he has tried again dozens of times.
He used to say to me things like’ you dont understand anything’, ‘you need your head examined’. He also said things to me that he totally denied after, and pretended I had invented them. Once he told me a long story about a person from his family and when I mentioned it again he looked at me like I had invented it and made me doubt my own sanity.
He never showed remorse for what he did and everything was alwaus other peoples problems. Hew told me he would kill someone easily if needed. He had odd reactions to everthing, one of the most strange was when one day I just stopped by the pub where he worked and on seeing me he started screaming he would call the police!!!!!!
It took ages for the light to down on me that I was dealing with a dangerous deranged person and I just escaped with my life and blocked him on my phone and email. Im glad to say that Im happily married to a very normal caring man who thinks the world of me and is very loving and do not fight or say things that hurt me.
Its difficult to escape a sociopath because we get too involved and we thing we can change them, well, we cant and nobody can.

Namaste, Paula. Great thoughts and revelations. Thank you for sharing.

I have been alienated by society (no word of lie). A social pariah. People have jumped away from me like they did to Glenn Close after her role in “Fatal Attraction”.

My existence is not at all good. People have reacted to me in this way because I have been, as Quinn Pierce put it in another blog on this site, in a disassociated ‘fog’. How do you act in this fog? Lifeless…a ghoul from Night of the Living Dead…sad all the time…soul-less…fearful…full of angst…unkempt, both physically and psychically.

No life even when trying to live it. No joy in anything.

Well its a lil twist to my experience. MY DAUGHTER IS A SOCIOPATH AND I DECIDED TO LET HER GO! ive always knew my daughter was deranged but i thought it was from my mom raising her under her sociopath stupidity. My mom stole custody of her when i was 19 years old. My mom lied behind my back to the police i neglected my daughter and she didnt know where i was. My did this when i asked her to baby sit while i hang out at grandmas whom was my breath of life. My mom alwayd send me away from home becuz she had it set up for children services to visit. Proving im not around. I didnt find out about this until i decided to leave her house and get my own apt with a rent subsidy. they found out i didnt have custody during the verfication process. I couldnt take it to court because the case was closed and i would have to get me a lawyer. I was torn. She manipulated forever coming between me and my daughter. Well my fell sick at 53 and the bitch died. My daughter just turn 18 at the tim and now she is 30. since we all know what sociopath does, lets just say my daughter went through it to the point she never ever experienced love or seen it in my mom home. In the last 13 years my daughter was just plain evil. Her siblings would warn me and i will find excuses for her. In the last 4 years weve been close, but my daughter shown no love for me behind my back. She would complasin to me about family members mistreating her the way they did me and when i get upset talking against them ,shevwill have me on speaker or if i text her about them she will show them. Everytime she get a new job or boyfriend she will put on facebook im jealous of her relationships. Her siblings will show me this, she also treat them bad but they dont deal with her and so close to beat her up. Anyway she gave me a grandson, hes 5. I barely know him because she used her stepmother as a victim to think she can be his full grandmother. Last week she accused the woman to be the hand that rocked the cradle and told herbdad his wifebis not welcome in her life. To manipulate the dad she told him all if his wife secrets, now hes on my daughters

…cont, now hes on our daughter willing victim agenda. Now this is what hasppened in the last couple of weeks my daughtet complained about her new boyfriend like she is a victim of his control, i backed her 100% with advice empathy and security. She even set it up for mebto get upset with him to the point i would fuss him out, now that im out the fog i noticed he would trybto defend him but shevwill over talk him wuth disrespect and he will look hurt and scared. The fog made it look like guilt. Do one day she asked me to keep her child i said yes but later she need to get a few things for me i have no car. AShe never showed up. I called and waited 6 hrs to reach her, so i textvher that i will leave hervson home alone if she dont answer just to get her to pick up, her boyfriend responded shes on hervway…anothervtwo hrs. She comes in upset running out the door. Said nothing. The next morning i wad concern and basically appoligized and told her the reason for the scare tactic. My daughter wasnt concern about the incident. She totally made it about me disrespecting her man and her man always liked me and all ever did was be negative towards they relationship i kept telling him howvyou was but he always had your side and so on. Im texting him to find out whats going on, shebis attacking me ttelling me to not text him she is next to him, leave them alone before they disrespect ne, and they going to block me. Im crazy and hearing voices, lol and lol, i kept telling her she was the one with the boyfriend problem. Do you guys know what she said? she said she was venting and he is good to her 90% of the time and she said bad things about him because single women gets jealous and start problems if she told good stories. Now her boyfriend hate me because he see im craxy and evil. I totally and completely went cold numb and empty. I saw a sociopath. I begin to think back and sawvi was in danger of a sociopath that is my daughter. I blocked her every access to my life. I told her siblings im done. Their sister is a maniac. im out the fog and no more excuses for her. Her history and misasion is to sabotage love around ppl and she dont have it to give. Then i began to listen to my other kids stories of being her victim. I just got rid of my sociopath boyfriend due to this sight i also have givin up on my daughter. Its so much more stories about my daughter victimizing me it will take a book to right about it.

Paula-

Your tale resonates on so many levels. Not only is it important to get the word out regarding how emotional predators operate, but also, what the toxic glue is that holds us in the relationship. Once people understand how emotional attachment works, it becomes far easier to detach and maintain objectivity.

Like you, I suffered a bewildering attachment to a man. Also, like you, it wasn’t until I saw the potential of harm toward my child that I was able to come to my senses. A great book to read that deals with this issue is The Betrayal Bond, Breaking Free of Exploitive Relationships. I’m also a hair’s breath away from releasing my own book on the subject.

We are all made up of brain chemistry. The same neurotransmitter that makes decent people trusting, loving and kind, works conversely when it is lacking in a person’s brain.

Acts of betrayal and abuse often trigger the exact opposite reaction than people would suspect, because the cessation of brain chemistry that makes us feel loved, creates longing instead of release. It works similarly to the craving of an alcoholic for alcohol. Because the chemical reaction is an unconscious one, we don’t see it, therefore, we don’t know to control it because it is controlling us.

Something has to trigger the end of a Betrayal Bond. For us it was concern for our children because we valued them even more than we valued ourselves. We are the kind of people who put loved ones first, and the predators in our lives spotted that in us as soon as we met. They have highly sensitive radar for sniffing suckers like us from across the room. My experience and knowledge have made me proud that I was a sucker. My experience has also taught me that I should be more wary of letting people know what a sucker I am when we meet. I no longer wear my heart on my sleeve. Some people call that “jaded.” I call it being “heart smart” and here’s a poem I’ve written about it:

Heart Smart

He’s so charming, it’s alarming
Bells and whistles sound.

He’s got flair, so debonair,
And you’re the mark he’s found!

Gifts, affection, no objection?
Moves in for the kill”..

Money, stature, fuels his rapture,
Beware of the thrill!

Don’t be lured, until you’ve heard,
All you need to know.

Check his past, don’t move too fast,
Or he’ll reap all you sow.

Want and need, are fraught with greed,
True love may not be part.

Don’t let him use, a caddish ruse,
As evil steals your heart.

Don’t fret you’ll lose, someone you chose,
By practicing “heart smart.”

(For the men out there who’ve sustained similar injury, please just substitute “he” for “she.” I in no way want to overlook you.)

For people who are not banged upside the head by the blow that set us free, it is difficult to draw the line. There is no clear cut awakening. That’s why this site and the improvement of public awareness are so important. Once a person understands they are with an emotional predator, they need to get away as far as they possibly can, as soon as they can, and never look back! We can’t change their way of operating, they will simply find a new cast of characters once we are no longer fooled by them.

Your article is immensely helpful.

JmS

I’ve found that we get lured into the sociopath’s twisted way of thinking but after awhile, one starts to realise that what they are saying is: “do as I say, not as I do”. We also allow our boundaries to be compromised to the point where our fundamental morality no longer exists. This is how a victim slowely gets sucked into the distorted, Alice In Wonderland type world totally unrealted to reality. We come to justify actions which we know, down deep, are evil.

Your grandmother was your ‘breath of life’ ?

Ours was too busy sucking the life out of us.

Hi Paula,

I am very surprised you think Jodi Arias a sociopath. In my opinion Jodi killed Travis Alexander in Self Defence; even though Juan Martinez told everyone she was guilty of 1st degree murder, there is no evidence to support this, none. Juan changed his charge from shot first to shot last in his closing argument in order to prevent Ms Arias from winning her case. The ME perjured himself, he changed his testimony to suit Martinez’ determination to kill Ms Arias; evidence doesn’t matter to Martinez, nor does perjury when he wants the defendant dead. Check out George Barwood on wikispaces. Martinez prevented evidence that would have supported Jodi Arias, from being admitted; why would any prosecutor do this if fairness was what he wanted? The real sociopath , I believe, is Travis Alexander. Just like people say about Amanda Knox, they say Jodi lied on the stand. They want her to be guilty, therefore they won’t see there’s no hard evidence of her guilt. They can’t explain what the ’hard evidence’ is, they want her sent to death on circumstantial evidence and the red herrings that Martinez threw in simply because she isn’t guilty and it’s my belief he knows she isn’t guilty. This in my opinion was a total miscarriage of justice. Everyone deserves and should get a fair trial, instead this was a State Circus.

Just because she was convicted doesn’t mean the jury were right. Maricopa County in Arizona is renowned for overcharging defendants and sending innocent people to their deaths. I watched the trial and Juan Martinez is guilty of gross prosecutorial misconduct. To say I was appalled is a total understatement. He is guilty of: Witness tampering, yelling at witnesses, throwing things in the courtroom, signing autographs outside the court in a Capital Murder case, asking 4 questions in one when he knows there are 4 different answers, demanding a yes/no answer and objecting so many times so as to prevent the jury from following what the witness was saying, preventing evidence that would support Miss Arias, I could go on.. perverting the course of justice, lying, telling the jury how to vote, changing his charge from shot first to shot last at the 11th hour in his closing nonsense. And it was, total nonsense. Martinez sold to the jury and they bought it, he knew they would, he knew they took his word as gospel. For Martinez it isn’t about Justice, its about Winning. Miss Arias rid herself of one sociopath and ended up with another, Juan Martinez. Watch it on youtube. But first of all go to OccupyHLN, what Jason Weber writes is bang on the nail.

Narcissistic parents are terrified of their children’s maturing. They dread adolescence …

My young life was peppered by one evil attempt after another on my parents’ part to keep me immature. They were pathological narcissists.

One of my sisters-in-law always claimed, “Your parents never treated you kids like adults.”

What may sound like ordinary events during the adolescent stage with my parents were actually diabolical ploys to sabotage any signs of approaching adulthood or sophistication. My uncle’s kids (my father’s brother) were calling their parents by their first names when I was struggling to maintain my balance.

I remember being dragged to a salon at 12-years old, against my will, to have my hair done the way my mother wanted it to look (like a clone of her). A counselor years later supported me…she said, “You don’t drag a pre-pubescent girl to the salon. A 2-year old you DO bring to a salon, even if kicking and screaming, but not a 12-year old.” Other girls my age were wearing age appropriate clothes and talking to boys. A year later they were actively dating (most of them). I never even so much went to a school dance because I knew how wide the chasm was between my and my peers. And I was totally miserable.

There were many other events that may sound ordinary to others, but trust me they were not. My parents ignored my tears and heartache.

The absolute horror of narcissistic parents who don’t recognize your autonomy and ignore your pain have cataclysmic repercussions for the rest of your life, especially if you are female.

My maturation age will never be normal and others have ostracized me because of it.

This may not be the place to post this, but please be patient. I appreciate Love Fraud but another site that focuses on narcissists does not accept blogging.

Dear Barb,

Reading your post was heartbreaking, I am so sorry you had this sort of childhood and I feel for you, it must have been truly awful.
I feel pleased you have found a safe place to post, you needed to do that.
Let others think what they think, you are the better person; they are stuck in their ignorance, you have grown, you are far more mature than they will ever be, you have empathy where they do not, you have that going for you and its worth a lot. The people who have ostracised you have no compassion, they don’t know the meaning of it, don’t give them another thought, don’t let them affect you, you are far better than they are, don’t give them the time of day, they don’t exist as caring human beings and never will.

Love yourself, do things that make you happy.

God Bless.

Barb,

I’ve been thinking about you, and what I think you need to have, is a distraction.. anything, be it art – anything that arouses your passion.

Another way is to be a Volunteer, anywhere. What I’m getting at is that I think you need to be taken right out of yourself – discover YOU, you’ll be pleasantly surprised. Helping others, we don’t have time to think and dwell on bad things in the past, the past has gone, why live in it when there’s so much more to you and life? We’re only here a short time really, smile, you have a lot to offer! It makes no sense to dwell on the past, does it and when you’re not thinking about it, you’ll be happier. Let go of it, put it in the bin 🙂

I have just turned 63, was on holiday, I took myself off to Greece for 2 weeks, that does wonders! So much so that when I was there I forgot my birthday!!! It was the next day and it was 10pm before I realised it 🙂

Life CAN be fun if you let it 🙂

Thank you Paula. Reading this article makes me feel good. It makes me realize how far I’ve come in this learning journey. I have been dependent on this site for almost a year now when I first realized what a sociopath was. I read over my first post and I am in utter SHOCK and I even wrote that I thought I was a sociopath and totally crazy!! He had me so warped into thinking I was something I was not just like you wrote about above.

In the last year of ending this relationship and finally in the last 6 months of having no contact things have changed so much. From a time of hopelessness the sun is finally shining and I have learned how to love myself. People always ask me why I stayed with this man for 4 years and I can see now that I needed him to teach me how to love myself. I had to learn it the hard way but I did!

I am now attracting the most wonderful people in my life. I’m dating again and there truly ARE wonderful people out there!

For anyone that feels hopeless today, let me be a ray of hope that it truly DOES get better! Trust yourself, believe in yourself, and accept that this was meant to teach you something about who you are and you will come out a stronger version of yourself…I did!!

serenity12,
Congratulations on your progress! 🙂

Tryingtoheal: I cried internally, as I can’t cry outwardly anymore, after I read your very supportive message to me. I felt real acceptance and love. This is why I connected to ‘Love Fraud’ and ‘Tears and Healing’.

It was an awful childhood. Unfortunately the world sees what your parents created (not the real you) and it is awfully hard to break out. I find that humor works well everywhere but one cannot always be ‘up’ for humor. Did you know almost all comedians came from horrendous backgrounds? And their humor is repressed rage?

Dear Barb,

It makes me feel happy to know that I’ve helped you, we all need someone who accepts and loves us, I hope you can let it all go and love yourself, you deserve it.

Yes, I did know that about comedians, my father used to do work for Bob Monkhouse and they became firm friends, but Bob was very depressed in private but who would have thought it, as on stage he was a funny man, always laughing. I think if you try acting the part of being happy, it can help and without you knowing it, you will be much happier.

This takes me to what I wanted to say to you, laughter truly IS the best medicine for anything, is there a comedy club near you? I think it would help you.

Don’t let your parents win or anyone, it really is a waste and it will keep you unhappy. Go and enjoy an evening of laughter, meet others and you will feel so much better.

Another thing to do is write everything down about your unhappiness, then when you have finished, get up, feel resolute, tell yourself you’re a beautiful woman, (you have to say this out loud) march out to the bin and throw it ceremoniously away, for the bin is all its fit for. Then smile and tell yourself this is the first day of the rest of your life! 🙂 Celebrate, get dressed up and go out with a smile on your face, others will smile back!

Try it!

I tried visiting my parents’ grave sites a number of years ago. There was an overwhelming sense of ridicule towards me from them even though they were gone.

I also felt an extremely strong ‘anti-magnetic’ repulsion (no word of lie)…like when you try to bring opposing magnets together and it is just impossible.

Wrong family. It happens. My siblings are just clueless.

Dear Barb,

I can tell all of this hurts you enormously still, but try to just let them go? It may help to think that the way they were towards you, that they had a terrible upbringing.. and they didn’t know how to parent; clearly they didn’t.. I think the only way forward is to think this way and, if you can, try to forgive them… its hard, very hard, one day when you’re feeling stronger, you may be able to do that. Not right now, concentrate on you, you are the most important one.

Take care of you, pamper yourself, it needn’t be in a big way, just little things, such as having candles in the bathroom, buy some perfume and something to put in your bath, plan an evening in with yourself, put some of your favourite music on, buy some chocolates, make yourself a lovely meal, a special meal, just for YOU 🙂 xx

Another thing you may not have tried.. sing! Yes, sing in the bath, sing when you’re cooking, put on a CD and sing along with it, singing is great and you’ll find you will feel much better 🙂 it really works! I know, I tried it 🙂

Remember, you cannot change the past, but you Can change the future 🙂

tryingtoheal,
I love your words of comfort and wisdom to Barb!I don’t mean to eavesdrop,but I found all those things worked for me!

Thank you Blossom4th,

You know, I had a normal upbringing, if there is such a thing (!)
But I do know what its like to be duped by a sociopath.. so I suppose I can speak with Some knowledge.

Yes, singing and telling yourself you’re worth more than that really does help. Glad they worked for you too! Nothing like a bit of ‘Me’ therapy! Life is too short to dwell on people who aren’t worth it, in doing so you let them win and you keep yourself unhappy. Onwards and upwards, keep smiling 🙂

Barb – I understand how you feel. Both my parents were narcissists too. One of many hurtful things my Mom did when I was 14, trying so hard to be “grown up”, was to take me to a dress shop to return the Easter dress I had bought (one that was in style, the first I ever got without her). She dragged me back to the shop, complained to the saleslady that I wasn’t going to wear “that ugly thing”, then she chose a frilly lilac dress with a full skirt – the type of thing Shirley Temple wore at age 5. It was so humiliating. There is a lifetime of such controlling and humiliation as I’m sure you suffered as well. Two things really helped me to move past that pain and the constant mental reminders playing in my head like a never-ending record: I wrote a letter to my Mom, even though she has been dead for 5 years. I put in all my emotion, pain, put down all the mean things she did and how I felt when these things happened and how I still felt. I cried like a baby, then moved to anger, then tears again. But when the letter was finished, I felt clean inside, free. Then I read the letter to a domestic abuse counselor, cried a little, and tore it up. Leaving the counselor’s office again I felt clean and free. So I have two suggestions to you – write letters to your Mom and Dad, get it all out, don’t give up if you cry or get angry, the purpose is to discharge the emotion. If you don’t get it out it will torment you for life. I am now 66 years old and for the first time I am beginning to feel good about myself. Please don’t wait that long. It can be the beginning of building your self-esteem, which is so important. The second suggestion is to go to a Domestic Violence center. The definition of DV has changed and now includes emotional and mental abuse, not just physical abuse, and not strictly from boyfriends and husbands. You and I were abused children and we have suffered the effects of that too long. I hope you can find a good counselor and some peace. It’s amazing how much you can learn from a well-trained therapist who can guide you and help you heal from the trauma of abuse. You are a worthy person, a special lady, there’s only one of you and you deserve to be happy.

TVMorgan September 28, 2013

You are not going to believe this. Just this morning the memory of one particular Easter event hit me. Unbelievable! My mother had brought me shopping for a bonnet and I chose a brightly colored one that had flowers on the side…Audrey Hepburn look. What galls me is that she ASKED me which one I wanted in the store. Later that week she brought home the other bonnet…a childish ‘skimmer’ hat (very similar to your story). It was infantilizing and humiliating.

I have considered writing her a letter (she is long gone) and it might be a good idea. I also want to bring at least one letter to my parents’ graves to read it to them (highly recommended by John Bradshaw). We are not being hateful or disrespectful. In fact, they were to us.

I am sorry for her…she was a very unhappy woman. She did not want me to ‘find’ myself or differ from her…almost like ‘cloning’. This makes me feel badly for her because she was treated horribly in childhood, and as we know we need to ‘not be the only one’…we need re-affirmation and identification. She had neither. Her mother was an absolute horror-show.

It was almost like we had a meeting of the minds this morning…you and I…in fact, we did. Thank for your post. It is greatly appreciated.

Another idea: have you ever held a picture of yourself as an infant and/or very small child and tell that child how perfect you are/were? How innocent and deserving of great parents you were? Communicate with that picture…imagine you are whole and pure…become a parent to that picture and tell your ‘inner child’ how wonderful you were/are.

I also happened upon a website that allowed me access to “Your Inner Mother”. I receive emails from “Your Inner Mother” at least once a week. The emails are what we should have heard from our mothers from long ago. Some I don’t keep but most I save to my “Your Inner Mother” folder.

The ramifications of having narcissistic parents resounds throughout our lives. Ugly memories preventing us from achieving happiness or success. I am proud, though, that in the 1970s my true self came forth…and against my Mom’s wishes I took off for Canada and lived there a number of months…almost a year. I felt like an Alpha Female, making all of my own choices. I made friends and did adventurous things. It was totally liberating. I actually had JOY for the very first time.

I am 62 years old now…

Maybe it says something about me that I keep dwelling on these things…out of touch with others. Years ago my husband and I were extremely popular and always doing things.

Have you noticed it is getting harder to connect with others? I actually enjoyed my parents in my 30s and we influenced them to travel more…see North America.

They went to Campobello, Maine, FDR’s ‘cottage’ in the mid-1990s and LOVED IT! They asked us for more suggestions.

Keep shedding light! There is enough for everybody.

Barb,
I like your idea of an Inner Mother folder!And I liked tvmorgan’s idea of writing a letter to one or both parents.

It’s good that you realize that your mother had a hard time growing up.Because then,we can be different from the psycopath by showing empathy…understanding;then applying the understanding to the situation.I remember my mother telling me stories of her childhood.Her mother treated her differently than her younger sisters because she was conceived during rape,and although she married the man,she divorced him.She tried her best to forget her bad memories.One time she left my mother home and took the two younger girls out shopping for school clothes.My mother sold the bicycle she’d bought with babysitting money and went shopping.When her mother and sisters returned,they excitedly showed her what they’d bought.Her mother then said,”Oh…I bought these for you”.Mom said they were drab in color and style.She walked over to her closet and proceeded to show them what she’d bought!They were surprised!Years later,when my grandmother was dying,who set at her side?!! My mother who traveled several states away,while the younger girls lived in the same state!Mom was aware of her mother’s faults but she also knew that she just reacted to life situations like everyone else does.So when her mother needed her,she put all of that aside.It doesn’t mean that it didn’t hurt her or cause issues in her life.My mom passed in Dec 2010.Even though she had issues,I have nothing but fond memories of her.

I am new to this site.. After researching narcissism, I wanted a place I could talk. I found this site. Thank God. I have just recently ended my relationship with my narcissist a few days ago, with the strong no contact. After experiencing for the first time the last few months of the Silent treatments, I didnt understand, so I started to google and one website led me to another… Until I started shaking, when I realized what I was dealing with. Every where I searched kept bringing up the name narcissist.. I literally had to research what that meant..I didnt like what I found, but it fit, and in a wierd way, was a great sense of relief, to find an answer that explained my experiences perfectly. Mine in in full blown law enforcement…and past military…Not sure what exactly this is going to mean just yet, since I just recently started fighting back…It is not easy…Because of the belief I thought it was.. thats the hardest…Is that kind of deciept..My friends all around me, think its just a matter of letting go..I hope he does…now..But.. like I said.. I get the silent treatments.. then his last visit was a few days ago..I finally tricked him into giving me my keys back..by letting him think, I was falling for this again..I got the schpele after I told him to leave, that it was ok, for me to date, as long as he can still take me out..and its ok to date, but just sleep with him..or…to reconsider my boundaries that what is done is done, to let him come back down the road…When I heard all of this… I was in Awww…and thanking God, I studied this Disorder, before the encounter, I seen this as clear as day, every time he opened his mouth..My only concern…Is if he comes back.. I read they always do….And he has… except this time… I told him to leave for good..That is why I am typing this… I just cant believe my luck to find someone like this and fall for the charm.. And quite frankly, the more I read, and remember all he has said from Day one, has my shaking like crazy…Its so right on…It is freaking me out…I just wanted to get this out.. Thank you for listening

My soon to be ex husband is also a deputy sheriff , retired from 22 years of active duty us army. My advise to you is to be very careful. They will sbuse this “extra” power they think they possess to throw everything in your path. The only way I can “fight” him is through my aggressive attorney . I could not do it on my own. I posted several comments what he put me thorough especially since he left. To me it’s still unbelievable what they are capable of. Please take extra pro caution when dealing with a lad enforcement narcissist. It makes it even worse. Believe me I know. Stay strong in your no contact. Good luck.

Thanks Kaya… I will look for your comments and read them.. Thank you so much

Just a word to let you know that we ARE actually listening. You are not alone! It’s good that you got your keys back! It’s good that you let him know you’re done. Hopefully, he’ll leave it like that, but unfortunately, it’s probably not going to rest there.

He’ll need to explain himself to the folks you mutually know. His explanation won’t be, “I’m a narcissist so she threw me out.” He will try to vilify you and make it your fault.

The quicker he gets to his new target, the better off you’ll be.

Meanwhile, you need to start rebuilding your life by treating yourself to the things and relationships you enjoy.

Wishing you all the best on your new journey to happiness!

JmS

Hi Jim

Thank you for the response.. Not sure what he will have to fix.. He never associated with my friends or liked them.. Actually, I lost alot of them, When I stopped socializing with them..However..you are right about one thing..He is consumed about how others see him…HUGE!! We have a common restaurant, that we both went to and where we met. I know the owner of this restaurant and all employees, I worked their for 10 years as the manager, me and the owner are very good friends, he occasionaly likes to still go there with his friend or daughter. Its an Italian restaurant…and its where, I socialize the most with my friends. He hated me going there, He hated my friends, however, I did introduce him to the owner, and that would be the only tie for that…Otherwise, we did everything together, alone…except a wedding I took him to, which was the owner of this restaurants son..about a month ago..He talked little to everyone, yet insisted on going with me, so I wouldnt cheat or drink.. He monitored me all night, He constantly told me to watch my face expressions when he was irritating me, cuz everyone was watching..OMG!! No one was watching…What they all saw, was I was not being me…It was horrible…I never met his family, the whole year.. and they live in this town..He told me that his mother doesnt like brash people, and she never liked anyone who didnt listen to him..OMG!!! I am so far from Brash…And always got along with parents and have the biggest respect for my elders…But..OK!!! You may be right here…I guess I never thought about that… Thank you for the heads up, It really helps

Jm
you are so right about your comments “The quicker he gets to his new target the better”. It is difficult to see look at this way but it makes sense a lot of sense. Being discarded by someone I loved so deeply was very painful but knowing that the coworker he is with now will endure the same pain as me. Do you think he might treat her better since she is “so more attractive and sexy” than me? Thanks for all your help .

Windy – welcome to Lovefraud – We have many articles that may help you understand what happened – maintain No Contact. The longer you stay away from him, the clearer your vision and understanding will be.

Windy: Welcome
I have had many answers and insight from Love Fraud. As my sister would say: “Ain’t it great”?

Welcome.

Thank you all for all your supportive comments. I am so grateful that I found a site I can actually comunicate on. The main concern I have…is what happens next? So far…He has been to busy with full time Deputy and College football coach…This man is 59 years old..and consumes his life with filling in as much as he can to relive his past that made him feel good or bad… Lawenforcement, swat..etc..(fills his need for action like in the marines and vietnam war when he was 18) Football coach (Fills his need for his day being the top of his game in Semi pro football), he sleeps little and is consumed…He said “He knows he is a Loser” but knows nothing else..But yet, wants Love, but not have to compromise.. However..my main concern, is when football season is over for them in Novemeber. When He will actually have time to persue again or more…and think more…in the meantime, its silent treatments, and trying to contact when he has time, which is usually every 6-7 days. I dont think he has another target,except his consumption of work and football, I wish he did, or would, I visualize he does…Just to accept it and be ok with it, and it works.. Doesnt hurt so bad…I take comfort in the thought that, if there was someone else, he will deffinately treat her like he did me, quickly..I would feel horrible for her, but NOT for him…His persue on me, Looking back, was consistant, and aggressive when I wasnt even looking.. Then wanting me to become a better person?? then wanting me to make him my safety place?? Then telling me How he can see Im good and big heart through my eyes..but when I ask what else he sees…He cant answer.. he really cant…Now its.. ok.. you can date but still let me take you out..followed by…ok..you can date, but just sleep with me..or..We will work this out in the future…And over and over again right before all of this… was…If I ever find out you cheated on me, I will “F” someone in YOUR bed and make sure you see it….When I asked him “Whos says stuff like that” He says hes kidding…He would never do that…but he has said it over and over again…Or threatened to hire a woman to kick my ass, cuz he got to much to lose…Again.. he laughed..Said he was kidding, but made that comment over and over again….I am just sick to my stomach and it hurts…Thinking whats next…or…If anything….He will be back home next weekend…I am so bracing myself…Not sure If I have to…Did he go…??? or…. Oh God!!!! That is the only thing I dont know….. The rest of the pain, is just talking to myself, when I miss him, that what I miss was just lies…and he cant love anyone…not even himself… Lots of affirmations and self talk… Every single day…I thank you all for your responses… I need to hear them so bad, and to read your stories that I can relate to, so i dont fall into second guessing myself. Thank you: Jim, Donna Kaya…Soooo much

Windy, first of all I know EXACTLY what you are feeling about the coaching. My exspath played pro soccer for ONE season and sat on the bench and he wants to hold onto it SO bad!! He’s 36 years old and played when he was in his early 20’s and that’s literally all he tells people whe they first met him… “I used to play pro soccer” He now coaches and runs his own “business” of training other players all plugging his credentials with “Former Pro Soccer player” Its hilarious to me now….

What’s next you ask? Coming from someone who has been out for a year and moved on with my life…looking back the answer is GO EASY ON YOURSELF! So many people on here gave me that same advice! I did some CRAZY effed up things and felt so foolish and advice on here was telling me that I was pushed to my MAX stress level and therefore doing stupid things like calling his ex, trying to track down hi new target etc… but now that the stress is gone life is finally back on track and I took care of myself!

So true what was said above about “the sooner he moves onto his next target the better” If not he would be continually trying to get me back into his life. He knows now that if he contacted me I would DESTROY his world… we are in the same social circle socially, athletically, and through work so he knows I could expose him… so he’s learned that I am smarter than him and will out smart him ALL the time.

Remember, these people have a decision making/impulse control system of around a 6 year old. I have a degree in science so I have done a lot of research on sociopaths and how thier brains work. For me I am all about the proof and logic. If it works for you educate youself on a scientific level and you may get some relief/answers that way. I did. Let me know if you want any resourses. the more I read the more I realized it wasn’t my fault and I don’t take it personally at ALL anymore. I know I’m awesome…he has irreversable brain damage. The more you know about this disorder the easier you’ll be able to let it go:) HUGS

Thank you Serenity

It always, helps so much, just knowing someone else is going through the same thing, and its just not an individual Jerk.. I realize they are in worst pain, every day, even more then we are, we can move on and heal… I most certainly do not excuse any actions to anyone that does so much damage in ones life… But Im getting tired, and worn out…I been doing so much research, trying to understand something I will never understand…It has been consuming me..None of this is easy.. Especially the part where, you realize in a minute, It was your life.. Now its gone.. in an instant.. and the hurt and emptiness and so many unanswered questions set in…Its horrible…I see now, my N was conditioning me from day one. And I also know that is able to condition himself on most times, due to his training in the military and being at war..I see that.. I call him the “Quiet Narcissist”. Holds everything in side, controlls situations of outburst due to his work and past, but always., so called forgives quickly on the outside..but its there, it comes out little by little..This is what worries me…He truely used me to identify him, by all his comments about my looks, how pretty I was…I was his prettiest, wanting me to dress certain ways for certain occasions, Control my facial expressions, so everyone thinks we are the happy couple.. Everything was control..But in a different way.. This N didnt come out and blame me ever..for anything.. at least, not that i know of…He played the opposite.. He blamed himself, always calling himself a loser, He wants me happy, Im a good person, yet…his personality and lots behavior, was unexplainable.. weird… freaky.. and unexcusable.. Anyways…A break up is a break up.. Healing is crucial.. I been through heart breaks before, It will take sometime with this one, not so much what he did, but what he had me believe..Now my anger today, is why I am spending more time trying to figure his ass out than I am about making myself feel good..That is BS.. I may be low tomorrow, but tonight, is how I feel. The more I talk about it, and get it out…the more I am seeing what Im still doing.. I hope he conditioned himself to stay away..He may have or maybe not… I have to get my faith back in God, like I use to..before him.. So tonight will be reading books about me, that make me sleep well..Tonight, I am not afraid, I am fed up with giving him so much of my time, trying to figure his ass out.. He wants to go… then GOOOOOOO, I am not a victim, if choose not to be… Like I said, this is my feelings in my moment right now.. tomorrow or later tonight, I could fall again, but for now… I like my power…:) And I like that you shared your story…It always helps to see someone else, that survived or is surviving this stuff…. Thank you for letting me vent… I can get all over the board with feelings some time…:) God Bless you Serenity for responding…You are soooo right on with what you said…

It absolutely will consume you for a while. And that’s ok! I was only with mine for 4 years and we had no children so I had no attachment to him. But it really woke me up to figure out who the hell I was… But I was consumed for a long while. I was given the advice to just let it happen. If you are truly keeping to the NC rule there os NO WHERE to go but up!! Everyday is UP UP UP!! I struggled with wanting to PROVE, and have him feel PAIN, nd force him to EMPATHIZE! They just dont! And now that I realize that I simply laugh at it and say “It wasn’t me” it never was! Ever!

And Windy one more thing…. you seem to be very sensitive to the “label” of what he is… a Narrsisist etc… I’ll tell you when I first started reading this site I had no IDEA what a sociopath was… I kept thinking about what he was. I remember BAWLING one night after realizing that after making excuses for him I realized that he was a dangerous psychopath! And I am lucky he didn’t kill me… He never tried and I thought he was harmless. but I realized the potential inside of him. Have you checked Hare’s checklist? Narssisimn and Psychopathism are related but different levels.. I just worry because I used your wording when i was in denial…

Awww… I love it…Thanks for sharing that with me..and making a humor at the end, it made me smile..still 4 years is a long time…Good for you…and thanks for sharing the encouraging side to an awful battle… Well needed… I like the UP UP UP !!! Good affirmation.. I will keep in mind…Thank you 🙂

Serenity

I guess I never paid attention, how I labled him..before I found this website, I was googling just to understand, the word Narcissist kept coming up..I didnt know what that meant, so I found sites on it, some I could relate, and some were different. then I ran into more sites, until I reached blogs from other women, who told there story that got my attention that I could relate to so well..Then I found another, and actually contacted them, and told my story, and she e-mailed me back, and explained it all to me, and introduced her book, narcissist was the name.. however…after reading her book, which was close to home for me..I felt I needed to find somewhere to chat and get help working this out.. In her book, telling her story, this was the sight that she used to help her through her letting go and no contact, and that is how I found this sight.Now whether or not he is a N or a whatever… really makes no difference I guess, to me… It was only the behavior I was trying to understand that hurt me..and thats why I am here. So to me, I guess, makes no difference what he is labled, it is still a personality disorder, and it left alot of damage and fear of the unknown.. I am here to break away from this, with support..and get strong… Heck.. I didnt even know what an N was until just a week ago…I appologize for the way that was written, just in the beginning of my research and discovery, that was what I identified him with from what I learned.

P.S. I will definitely check them out. Thank you for sharing that information with me Serenity 🙂

Hi OpalRose

Thank you for the reply.. No.. He never said, he was drafted, I always assumed he signed up for that, he said he was 18 years old. He comes from a military father also..Actually, to be honest with you..I dont even know, about if he signed up or drafted.. I didnt ask.. He is alot older than me. I am only 50, so my interest was never to the point of needing to investigate. However..everything he does, is based on that. right down to the tears he gives, for seeing what he saw, to the scars he shows me that are gunshot wounds,(and how he calls himself the MACHINE for all the pins in his body from surgeries, and the guilt he expresses, that seeing his friends die, and he should be dead too… I dont understand any of this..I cant even relate to something like that.. Guess I always been more sheltered than I thought. His behaviour with me..always goes back to, what ever he does..and the lack of comprimise, is because “I gotta do this for all my fallen Brothers”.. Ok…. I understand… But what I dont understand is that you havent been active in the core for years…You are a cop…Soooo what are you doing? This conversation was only 4 days ago..on my last encounter, when he came back. A few of our dates this last summer where the Military shows…and all the planes, jeeps etc from most wars.. He was lost and fascinated by it all…Off in his little world, checking it all out…Was no biggie for me… Thought it was cool…But not my interest.. I went for him… Soooo I guess if he was there, it was only for a couple years…I dont know. I never asked…He dont talk a real lot about it, unless its a issue…with his behavior…But what he is doing now..to honor them…I have no idea… You made a good point.. I would like to check that website out..But for right now, I could care less what his lies are…anymore…But then again… Would be nice to have references incase I need them down the road.. Hope I dont..I dont know yet…But as far as im concerned tonight… I already know a hundred lies he told me about his feelings for me.. Not sure I can handle anymore…I think it would drive me more crazier… I have little respect for him tonight…Im in that place..Wish I could stay in this state of mind.. Im working on it, and all this, sure helps me alot..more than you know..Tomorrow may be a different emotional place im sure….I have this strange feeling, I have only begun to unravel the depths of all this…Scares the crap out of me… Thank you for your response.. People on here are wonderful..keeps me focused on doing the right thing, and sharing, sharing sharing the struggles.. I felt so solo with all of this, until I found this site. Thank you so much.. and God Bless you…..

Windy,
Before my husband and I were married,he used to tell me he was “affectionate” and loved to cuddle and kiss.But within 5 yrs,it all stopped.He’s a controller,but he held back from showing it,until after we were married and the babies started coming.The only way I really remember him showing the desire to control beforehand,was when he asked me not to wear makeup to our engagement party.He did it in such a way that it seemed he was asking;as if he was telling me I didn’t need makeup….only much later did I realize he didn’t want me to look attractive for other men.He now considered me “his property”.And he still does.But I just filed for divorce.

Please don’t let him talk you into getting back together.My husband told me of “all the changes he’d made” after a 5 yr separation.Once the ‘honeymoon phase’ was over,he set about getting his revenge!I almost didn’t survive the sleep deprivation(he knew it could have killed me!),the emotional and psychological abuse!

OMG!! I went through that also..I have always wore make up did my hair because of working in the public..He always complimented me, then.. He started with my make up also…I said “Im not going anywhere without make up on.. You kidding me” And he got irritated, saying I looked more pretty without it..Trust me I dont…I know this, when I would go to work a couple times, without it, my co-worker women would ask me if I wasnt feeling well lol…true story, his comments were a lie.. He wanted me unattractive without him, but wanted me dolled up at my best..WITH him.. I would go to his house after not seeing him for a week, and he would say “what did I tell you about wearing lipstick, You dont need it”. Unbelievable… You are right.. It is possesion… Makes me sick.. remembering all of this.. and my relationship was only 1 year and 3 months, compared to the ones i am reading about here from 5 years to 20 something years… I have to believe, God has guided and saved me to get here quickly, and find the help.. If I would of stayed longer, after reading everyones story, it would of been a night mare, im not sure I would bounce back from… It is already horrible, just being a little over a year….The more I remember, the more I see from all these post, the more angry I get…about the deciept… No one deserves that… NO ONE!!! I have every intention of sticking to the NC. I just dont know, what my challenge is going to be yet, or if there will be one…So im going to keep talking, get strong, and assume Im free…if not…I will aquired even more strength and knowledge than I even did the last time….:)

Windy,
I’m so glad to read of your determination! Oh yes,it’s much better that you get out after a year than two decades!Life with a sociopath takes a very heavy toll upon body and mind!

November 7th will be a year of No Contact for me.It has been a good year! I left my husband September 27th of last year.

blossom

I feel that way tonight, I am not feeling that determined most of the time with any of this..I just feel in a super T’D off mood, sort of speak, rehashing this whole last year.. The more I wright, the more I remember and the more I get angry HE did this, not me..However… Like I said, I have the strangest feeling, its just the start of finding out stuff..But, if what I know so far, is good enough to stay with the NC, I dont think I wanna dig for more..I just want to heal…I had the weirdest thing happen tonight..I am on call for work this weekend, I noticed I had 2 voice mail messages..I must of missed the phone calls.. so I listened to them right away, 1 was from a patient, and the second one came up as an old message I recived from him less than a month ago.. saying ” Why do I have this feeling you are out tonight”, I freaked out..He didnt call, that just came up.. I still dont know who the second message was from..weird.. so I went through all of my saved messages trying to figure it out, and re-listened to his voice yelling at me etc..I forgot I saved them, and they were all before I made my discovery about him…that was weird…But very helpful…WOW!! I am so happy for you, and congrats on your 1 year NC. I cant imagine how hard this has been for you to get to this mile stone…But im about to find out..I hope you are very proud of yourself..and thank you for being a super great inspiration of hope to me and others… Keep going forward….I wish you the best of luck blossom 🙂

What an excellent personal account, Paula. I am wondering how you learned to love yourself? I’ve been reading and listening to Brene Brown presentations where she talks about vulnerability, authenticity and self-love and makes so much sense. I have never found self-love. I don’t have a clue what it is which makes all negative experiences so difficult to bear and also made me a good target for the path in my life. It was never even close to a relationship but we worked together and he got inside my head very easily. The hard part for me is that I still find it difficult to completely trust that he is a sociopath even tho he completely fits the bill, has completely screwed up his life, lost his job, his marriage, his home and is being sued for trying to rip someone off monetarily. Yet I am still unable to believe it was him, not me. I know I am responsible for seeing red flags and ignoring them, and I’ll never understand why except that I am so very needy. He flirted with me, asked me to go away with him, told me I was perfect in his eyes, etc. Then of course, he’d ignore me. I never had any physical contact with him or even left the office with him. He hardly tried to make that happen. I made every excuse in the book for him.

You stated:

“The most difficult place to get to in life is a place of self-love. Self-love requires you to care for yourself, respect yourself, take responsibility for yourself, and know yourself. With self-love, we find peace within, which leads to peace without.”

Thank you for that. It explains why I can’t accept that this person is as evil as I know he is.

You mentioned that your path seemed like a child. Something that did really help me quite a bit was to read that emotionally they are about 3 yrs old age. That certainly held true for the path in my life. As I look back, it is truly the one thing that makes complete sense. He was unable to accept that he was not the center of the universe and w/the job he had, it was so easy to make excuses for him. Once he got fired and was gone, I expected to hear from him, to let me know what the heck happened. Not ONE word.
The emotional immaturity of this thing, (not human) was non-existent. He did what he wanted when he wanted and I was out of his mind as fast as a finger snap even right after a warm or caring conversation, email or comment from him. The event stayed in my mind but like a child, he forgot it immediately.

I do feel very ashamed that I was all involved emotionally with this subhuman. But thinking and fanaticizing about him was a go-to for me, a place where I could find happiness and peace. That is very hard to give up. I don’t have it in real life.

Your story is so heartwarming, Paula, and I am so glad for you. I resonate heavily to your experience and know that good things are in store for you. Thank you very much for sharing.

Still Reeling-

All the flirting and “nice” things he said were simply to stir the oxytocin levels of your brain chemistry. He was grooming you. By turning it off and on, he creates longing. What goes on in the brain is sort of like an alcoholic’s craving for alcohol. When you don’t have a chemical that causes you to feel the way you chose to feel, you crave it.

Your brain chemistry has neurotransmitters that will connect you to a love interest. When people refer to a “chemistry” between themselves and another person, they are absolutely correct. Your brain’s chemistry enables you to trust and engage in social and romantic interaction. When flirting raises the oxytocin level in your brain, you might have a sense of belonging and begin fantasizing about how the relationship with this person could be. Cutting off that oxytocin will give you a “low” and you will begin craving the return of those good feelings that made you feel desired.

You were fortunate that he didn’t stick around. But be careful. You’re on his radar screen. If he needs something you have, he’ll be back. If he comes back, he’ll be roaring down the “lovebombing” track!

You mentioned “self love” and I’d like to address that as well. People with affective empathy, caring for others, often will feel compelled to do for others, and sometimes at the expense of doing things for themselves. The ability to love others doesn’t mean you don’t love yourself. It means that your moral code includes caring for others too.

People without love interests need validation and caring, just like coupled people do. The problem is that you’re not getting it from a relationship, so you need to give it to yourself. When you excercise, you raise your endorfin levels and feel good about yourself. When you do a good or helpful deed, you feel good about yourself. In order to have a positive balance, single people need to be sure to engage in physical excercise and surround themselves with validating situations.

Hope this sheds some light on what you’re going through.

JmS

JmS – thank you for the info you posted. Exercise and validating surroundings / experiences as ways to find peace / release of positive biochemicals. This answers a deep question I’ve had for a long time about why I try so hard to imagine good situations. Thank you.

jm short, thank you for your thoughtful and informative post. It makes very good sense and I can’t disagree with any of it. Yes I definitely felt the “chemistry,” and as you’ve described it, it’s understandable that it’s very much an addiction. In fact, I didn’t like this individual very much at all. When he interviewed me the first time (and said something inappropriate!!) I was DISGUSTED by him. I walked outside and said out loud, “Smarmy!” I immediately had the impression he was a cheat, did not trust or respect him but I wasn’t interested in thinking about him nor was I at all attracted. Once I went to work there, he sporadically began working on me here and there and finally one day, as if out of the blue, I felt something. From there I became smitten but I still knew he was subhuman, disgusting and vile. I guess, as you say, it was the chemical reaction. He was often so awkward, as if he had no idea how to act around a woman…hahaha. I found myself thinking about things like how he washed dishes, did simple things around the house, how his hands looked when he did this or how he went about fixing food. Chemical reaction for sure.
Thank you so much once again, jm. Very helpful Oh and I’ve been working out for decades. I’m convinced I’d be dead today if not for exercise. Life saver. Take good care….

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