lf2

LETTERS TO LOVEFRAUD: Boundaries, zero tolerance, closure, moving on

Editor’s note: This article was submitted by a Lovefraud reader.

It has been about a year since my story was posted on Lovefraud, Not one thing about him was real. It has been two years since I broke off the short relationship with this disordered man. It is a year and a half since he stalked me. I hope to share at least some practical points that have helped me in the healing process. It does get better. And it is a process.

I wish I could say that others may be helped PRIOR to involvement with a sociopath, but as we all know, sometimes the inevitable entanglement occurs before we even realize we have been manipulated. This entanglement would have ended much earlier if I had had clear boundaries, zero tolerance for lies and bad behavior, and the will to walk away alone and create my own closure.

There are many events and bizarre experiences with him, his family, his indiscretions, the pathological lies. I now realize that the ONLY purpose to ANYTHING he did was to make himself look good, please himself, hide the truth, devalue others for his own perceived greatness, impress people and get off on his lies and deceptions. He loves that he manipulates people to admire him as the hero, and to come to his defense as the broken victim that he plays so well. He doesn’t want you to realize he IS the stereotypical villain. He was just good at imitating the qualities that are truly admirable like modesty, bravery and dependability. Telling people he was a Navy SEAL hero, working for the NSA, CIA, using aliases, killing terrorists, giving away fake medals, telling stories of being tortured. It’s always about him. And what he calls LOVE is more like an OBSESSION.

He surrounds himself with people who are weak, easily manipulated and vulnerable. They WILL turn their heads to the truth. He wants them to need him. It’s tantamount for HIS very survival. Smart people will question him. Weak people will live the lie, sometimes because they need something from him and sometimes because they are just too weak to admit they have been conned. It’s tantamount for THEIR survival. I know because I was there for a short time. It’s a vicious circle and a world of denial that feeds his sociopathic hunger. In reality, he needs his victims more. He is only as good as the reflection he sees in the eyes of the victim. When I questioned his veracity, I was disloyal. But I was right. I asked good questions (eventually) and he could not keep up the rotting facade of his fabricated life.

Back to basics

I had to get back to basics in order to trust others, myself, my instincts, my intuition, my belief system, religion and all the rules I used to live by. I had to respect myself, gain back my self-esteem and learn to be tolerant but ONLY of those who do not violate my beliefs and boundaries. I also had to learn to stop accepting bad behavior much earlier and stop the self defeating behavior I recognized in myself.

I made lists of those “boundaries” and used them along with real life examples of behaviors that were no longer tolerable. The will to keep those boundaries safe came from the anger I felt after revisiting conversations and events and learning all of the lies. It was painful. I needed to forgive myself, not him, and I decided I would never allow that behavior again EVER.

I was mind raped. No doubt. I lost an innocence, not unlike being a rape victim. The abuse and exploitation is so ambient at times that you don’t even realize what has happened. It is ridden with intermittent generosity and professions of love while your thoughts, actions and behaviors are so closely controlled through undermining manipulation, guilt and shame. You are in a whirlpool of words and actions that are so inconsistent. And manipulation that has you believing you are wrong, and that everything you learned to date is wrong and that what you are witnessing must be real, while all you know to be right and good has defied you. My intelligence and good rationale failed me. Still I wanted to believe and have hope and faith.

I made lists

It was therapeutic for me to make lists:

  1. Things he took from me.
  2. Things I gave up to him.
  3. Lies he told.
  4. Red flags I ignored.
  5. Names he called me.
  6. Things he did and said to violate me and my children and friends and all the things he did (behaviors) which were inconsistent with the things he said.

I was too manipulated for far too long. NO MORE. Finally I understood that there was nothing of substance there in him to begin with. I thought he had more to offer me than I had to offer myself. But it was I who had what he wants and needs desperately. Perhaps he saw an innocence, a vulnerability, a naïveté about me and he knew I could be conned.

As much as I read and studied narcissism, sociopathy, and any number of disorders, I still could not comprehend why he lied and cheated as he did and why I allowed him to keep coming back for more. Someone told me that normal, healthy people cannot make sense of irrational, impulsive and sometimes delusional behavior because we simply rationalize. People who are disordered and impulsive just do what they do because they can and it benefits themselves in some way. It truly is that simple.

Creating boundaries

There are things I have learned to practice that have allowed me to find closure, take my power back, regain my confidence, which hopefully will keep me from EVER making this mistake again. I don’t need someone else to provide closure to a bad relationship or situation I never did. It was in me all along.

Creating Boundaries: These are mine:

  1. HONESTY ”¦ I ignored my instincts and the facts even when I caught him in lies.
  2. INTEGRITY ”¦ He was not and never will be a man of his word.
  3. FIDELITY/LOYALTY ”¦ The best indicator of future behavior is past behavior. (He cheated constantly on his previous wife, on me and on his current wife. I have been told she is wearing the same engagement ring I wore.)
  4. RESPECT ”¦ (The verbal abuse, the cheating, the lying, the inability to do as he says are ALL encompassing of issues of respect). The bad behavior, spitefulness, drug abuse and allowing all of the above with his adult daughters.

I learned all over again to verbalize my rule of zero tolerance. I didn’t always speak up in the presence of the sociopath because he HAD to be in control and raged or had a tantrum for days.

The closure I seek these days, which I learned as a practice from my therapist, is that when someone is disrespectful, lies or doesn’t treat me well, that I need to close it off with direct communication about what I think and feel and to NOT let them back in again. When I do, I feel like I am in control of my life, my beliefs, and displaying respect for myself (and in an appropriate way). I have truly taken my power back. It is important for me to say, “Don’t contact me again. You are behaving inappropriately. I am not interested in you any longer. I don’t like what you just said to me.” IT IS ok to protect yourself first. I explain this at the risk of sounding juvenile or patronizing but I truly had to relearn these practices, which came so naturally to me previous to the sociopath.

Recognizing my value

All of our lives are eventually a result of the decisions we make. This is particularly true of the sociopath. In fact, I prefer to believe that his life is like a constant panic of desperation to gain what others have, what he needs to see in our reflection to fill the emptiness of his disturbed soul. He can’t fulfill his own fantasies fast enough and so he scrambles daily to find victims to manipulate in order to feel superior.

Recently, this man’s family and new friends found the truth about him on an internet site where he has been exposed as a military impostor and con man. He has known of the exposure for two years after an investigation. He chose not to respond then. He has dishonored those who served and gave of their lives. Other women/people have now come forward and also identified him and his stories. Justice comes in strange ways sometimes. He counted on all of his victims to cower to his intimidations but HE is the coward. Those who continue to live the lie are the cowards. Yet he still has potential to be prosecuted for his crimes. HE IS EXPOSED. I prefer to be on this end simply observing the drama that he is creating with his new followers and family, with no involvement.

At some point I saw more value in what the sociopath had to offer me than in what I had in myself. And I was willing to give myself up to be what he wanted, demanded, expected. The abuse I suffered as a target of a sociopath has taken a toll. To recover, I first had to clear the fog, find myself, and understand my value and importance.

There is a kind of confidence that is exuded when we know who we are and what we want and don’t deviate too much from that. People see it in us and respect it as well. The road is long and this experience with this dysfunctional man will stay with me for a long time. I found myself through recognizing my value and making sure it is respected and appreciated, if not by someone else, by ME. After all, I am the one who has to face me every day.


Comment on this article

211 Comments on "LETTERS TO LOVEFRAUD: Boundaries, zero tolerance, closure, moving on"

Notify of

Dear Donna,

This article SPEAKS TO YOUR POWER—and the POWER WE ALL HAVE, IF WE WILL JUST GRASP AND USE IT!

!!!!! –0 !!!!! PLATINUM SKILLET AWARD FOR THIS ONE!

(To the audience) APPLAUSE APPLAUSE!!!!!!!!!! WOW! A Standing ovation, Take a bow Donna, you deserve it!!!!!!

And, thank you donna, for showing us all that we also have this power, this power to SEE THE TRUTH, SET BOUNDARIES, TO ENFORCE THEM, AND TO VALIDATE OURSELVES AND TO HAVE A LIFE, A REAL LIFE, FREE OF THE LIES AND MANIPULATION OF OTHER PEOPLE!

:

I began posting shortly after your original article. Our journeys have run parallel in so many respects. You became such an important part of my healing process. Of course, I guess that’s why we became such good friends in real life.

“At some point I saw more value in what the sociopath had to offer me than in what I had in myself. And I was willing to give myself up to be what he wanted, demanded, expected. The abuse I suffered as a target of a sociopath has taken a toll. To recover, I first had to clear the fog, find myself, and understand my value and importance.”

It was this abnegation of self that was one of the worst things for me to grapple with in the aftermath. I now understand, courtesy of books like “The Betrayal Bond” and “If You Had Controlling Parents” how my sense of self was always pretty shakey and my boundaries were very weak, two factors which played beautifully into S’s colonization of my mind. But, it was the fact that I allowed myself to become obliterated that was so difficult for me to grasp.

I now see that in a wierd way thats awful as it was, I almost needed to “learn the lesson of S.” After S I finally learned how to draw some hard and non-negotiable boundaries. After S, I learned to say no and not honor my word, if to do so would be detrimental to me. After S, I re-evaluated the people in my life and, if they were found lacking, I got rid of them. After S, I established new criteria for the people I chose to let into my life. While I realize I suffered substantial losses while I was involved with S, I have also made tremendous gains in gaining the tools for how to live the kind of life I alwas wanted.

“As much as I read and studied narcissism, sociopathy, and any number of disorders, I still could not comprehend why he lied and cheated as he did and why I allowed him to keep coming back for more.” So, true. Like you, I studied sociopathy/narcissism, etc. I had “Without Conscience” and “The Sociopath Next Door” memorized. But, I still couldn’t grasp why he acted this way. And that’s when I realized I was asking the wrong question. The question wasn’t why he acted this way, the question was why I allowed him to act this way toward me. Once I framed the question that way, I began to heal, because I put the focus back where it belonged — on me.

So many people on this website twist themselves into pretzels trying to figure out “why he/she acts this way”, “surely there must be more I can do to win back that wonderful person I fell in love with” etc, etc. But, as you so eloquently put it, that isn’t the issue. They are damaged beyond repair. And if we, the victims, don’t put the focus on us in order to heal, we will be damaged beyond repair.

Wonderful article and thanks again, for sharing.

MY PARDON— my admiration for this powerful article still stands, and also my admiration for Donna for LF and all the time and effort she puts into it.

Thanks, Matt, your comment is also a very powerful piece of writing, outlining that control must be taken by ourselves.

Thin that Rolodex, Bro!!!! Weeding our gardens of life!

OxDrover:

How you doin’ (to quote Wendy Williams, love that show)?

Went on a job interview yesterday. While I”m still crushed over the screw-over my ex-boss did on my getting my dream job, I’ve decided I’ll take what I can in the interim, view it as a “bridge job” until I can get what I want.

Am enjoying the holiday season. Put up a 9 foot tree this weekend with the BF and then went out to do an early XMAS dinner since he’s leaving the country for 3 weeks to go back to see his mother abroad.

I just realized that my first article was posted on Love Fraud a year ago, on 11 December 2008. As hard as this year has been between driving off S-ex,losing my job and health problems, I finally feel my life is on the right track on the personal front. Now I need to get things nailed down on the professional front.

Someone recently sent this reminder to me about “letting go” — a message by Rev. T.D. Jakes. Even if one is inclined to identify as more “spiritual” as I do, rather than religious per se, there is relevance here in our journey of struggling to understand the encounters with N/S disordered persons and various other life challenges, and being able to move forward and grow toward “knowing with humility” (a favorite term of mine from the late M. Scott Peck, M.D.) — in stages of acceptance…

There are people who can walk away from you. And hear me when I tell you this — when people can walk away from
you: let them walk.

I don’t want you to try to talk another person into staying with
you, loving you, calling you, caring about you, coming to see you, staying attached to you. I mean hang up the phone.

When people can walk away from you, let them walk. Your destiny is never tied to anybody that left. The bible said that, they came out from us that it might be made manifest that they were not for us. For had they been of us, no doubt they would have continued with us. [1 John 2:19]. People leave you because they are not joined to you. And if they are not joined to you, you can’t make them stay. Let them go.

And it doesn’t mean that they are a bad person — it just means that their part in the story is over. And you’ve got to know when people’s part in your story is over so that you don’t keep trying to raise the dead.. You’ve got
to know when it’s dead.

You’ve got to know when it’s over. Let me tell you something.. I’ve got the gift of good-bye. It’s the tenth spiritual gift, I believe in good-bye. It’s not that I’m hateful, it’s that I’m faithful, and I know whatever God means for me to have He’ll give it to me. And if it takes too much sweat, I don’t need it. Stop begging people to stay…Let them go!

If you are holding on to something that doesn’t belong to you and was never intended for your life, then you need to…LET IT GO!

If you are holding on to past hurts and pains …LET IT GO!

If someone can’t treat you right, love you back, and see your worth…LET IT GO!

If someone has angered you…LET IT GO!

If you are holding on to some thoughts of evil and revenge…
LET IT GO!

If you are involved in a wrong relationship or addiction…
LET IT GO!

If you are holding on to a job that no longer meets your needs or talents…LET IT GO!

If you have a bad attitude…LET IT GO!

If you keep judging others to make yourself feel better..LET IT GO!

If you’re stuck in the past and God is trying to take you to a new level in Him…LET IT GO!

If you are struggling with the healing of a broken relationship…LET IT GO!

If you keep trying to help someone who won’t even try to help themselves…LET IT GO!

If you’re feeling depressed and stressed…LET IT GO!

If there is a particular situation that you are so used to handling yourself and God is saying ‘take your hands off of it,’ then you need to…LET IT GO!

Dear Matt,

I’m actually doing pretty well, and so are my sons!

Finally heard from the X-friends with a pity letter (e mail) said hadn’t been able to contact me sooner because had lost my phone number (but obviously had NOT lost my e mail) and also complained that son D “wouldn’t answer his pone” since Jan 15, I asked D about that and he said, Nope, that was the last time they had called him, wanting money and he had said NO.

I didn’t answer the first e mail of them wanting to get together with US to make arrangements to get the stuff out of storage (there is nothing left there but rained on trash and boxes of rained on books now) So then I get this second e mail asking if the first e mail got through and hinting that they are COMING out here.

They have had a KEY to the storage building from the get go and have come and gone from there at will without coming up here or notifying us they are going to the storage. For years they are under constraint to NOT come to the farm proper unless they call FIRST before coming. (which they highly resent that boundary and I have caught the wife crossing it when she thought I was gone and I wasn’t)

So I had intended not to reply to their e mails, but as son D pointed out the whole thing about the stuff in storage and the e mail to “get together” wasn’t about the stuff in storage, but about US and seeing US—DUH! Of course it was!

So I wrote an e mail back to them telling them that they had a Key to the storage and if they had lost it they had my permission to kick open the door which is easily done in any case, to get their stuff. I also said that I saw no need in them “getting together with us” and if they decided to pay my son D back the money they owed him, they could mail him a check. (they didn’t think I knew about that one)

So I get back a poor pity part e mail of “well I guess I shouldn’t bother you with my problems, I’m in a wheel chair all the time now and ya da ya da.

Well, having worked with spinal cord injured patients in rehabilitation, I am not used to being thrown into a pity by someone being in a WC as it is quite possible to have a good life even in a wheel chair and I know lots of people who have had great lives while confined to a WC, but because our X-friend chooses to sit in a WC (which he has been in 90% of the time for the last 30 years,) and feel that the world owes him a living, and everyone else has to do his bidding and wait on him hand and foot while he sits in a marijuana and Rx Pill stupor feeling sorry for himself doesn’t fly with me. Which I told him in the return e mail. Which I open copied to mutual friends and acquaintances that he has been loudly complaining to recently about how we have “Abandoned” him in his hour of greatest (pitiful) need. (Smear campaign recruiting these people to try to put pressure on us to take care of him).

Unfortunately, his “smear and pressure campaign” sort of back fired on him as the people involved saw through it as well as we have. His and his wife’s problems now is that they have “used up” all their friends and we were the last hope they had to get someone to “do for” them.

These people aren’t classifiable psychopaths, but they are highly dependent people who want others to take care of their needs. I call it MOOCHES. They make poor spending choices, then borrow money that they can’t pay back. No matter what you do for them or give them, it NEVER HELPS THEM because they are not willing to see WHY they are in the financial hole they are in, that it is the result of THEIR POOR CHOICES.

They envy anyone who has more, and don’t get the idea that the reason the other person has more is because that other person made BETTER choices, like not spending money on non-essentials when money was tight. Like saving money for a “rainy day” when money was in better supply.

In any case, in spite of promises to pay my son the money borrowed, I doubt we will ever hear from them again. My son D has finally “seen the light” where these people are concerned, and that is a good thing. It was a pretty big grief for him but he is about through the process. In fact, I am getting pretty impressed by how much my sons are both learning about people who would take advantage of you in any way. About those that you can “help” and those that all you would be doing to try to “help” them would be to enable them to continue in their dysfunctional behavior patterns.

My sons are becoming amazingly wise men at a much earlier age than I garnered the wisdom needed about people.

Our little “garden of friends” is no longer choked with WEEDS that suck the sustenance out of the soil of our souls.

Dear Recovering, You and I were posting over each other, but your post is awesome. I’ve seen it before but it is one of those things that we must MUST KEEP IN OUR HEARTS AND MINDS.

Thanks for posting this!

Hey OxDrover — I feel so blessed to be among this healing group of people at Lovefraud, and I want to give encouragement whenever I can since I receive so much support directly and indirectly from others who are willing to share their experiences and wisdom.

And I notice that you in particular do such a great job in welcoming new people. I thank you for that, since all of us have different gifts that can benefit this healing group as a whole.

Matt said, “She walked away from the person who was causing her pain and created her own closure. I had to do the same thing.”

Me too. That’s how I had to do it.
Disordered individuals are not really interested in sitting down and having a “heart-to-heart”.

I think a large part of life is really about looking within yourself and knowing exactly who YOU are as a person.
It’s like the Whitney Houston song, “Greatest Love of All”, when she sings, “learning to love yourself is the greatest love of all. And if by chance that special place, that you’ve been dreaming of, leads you to a lonely place, find your strength in love.”

Depending on a sociopath or any disordered individual for closure in a relationship is just not healthy, as far as I am concerned.

Hell, a sociopath will convince you that the only way you can get closure is to kill yourself.
That’s how sick they are.

QUOTE ROSA: “Hell, a sociopath will convince you that the only way you can get closure is to kill yourself.”

TRUER WORDS WERE NEVER SPOKEN, ROSA!!! You put it in such a nice concise sentence!

Matt, I love hearing your strength and your determination and how far you have come since you logged on here. Your advice is so good and so right on!

While we (suvivors) DO have empathy and compassion for those who are still grieving and wounded, at the same time, we must speak the TRUTH of HEALING. The “medicine” of healing may be truth that doesn’t “taste” good, or that the healing doesn’t want to take, but never0the-less we must speak the truth.

I got to thinking about working with diabetic patients, and the ONLY way for a diabetic to manage their disease is to TAKE CONTROL of their life and make GOOD CHOICES. All the medicine in the world won’t do a bit of good if they dont’ make those changes.

I even had one patient who was DETERMINED not to make any changes, totally UNWILLING TO, scream at me “Don’t give me those diets, just give me more insulin!”

I didn’t motivate every diabetic patient I had to make those GOOD CHOICES any mroe than we here at LF will be able to motivate every victim here to take charge of his/her life and make GOOD CHOICES in the future–but just as managing diabetes is NOT dependent upon the medical professional, it is dependent on the PATIENT, so is our healing.

I used to tell my patients that it was a “do it yourself disease” and that I was like a coach, I couldn’t get out on the field and play the game, but on the other hand, if they didn’t know the RULES of the game, they couldn’t play a good game either.

As survivors in various stages of healing I see us as coaches for the new members of the healing team. I see our roles to SPEAK THE TRUTH, and to support others by our compassion and empathy with the hard times they are having, but speaking the TRUTH above all is I think the most important part of our mutual support.

I also notice that some fairly new members who have come here in great pain, QUICKLY start to reach their hands out to other members who have fallen down. I think this helping others while we ourselves are still learning the “game” is also a big issue in helping us to heal ourselves. Extending a compassionate hand to others helps to give us strength in our own healing journey. That’s why I am still here at LF after nearly 2 years (I can’t even remember exactly when I joined) I know it was well over a year ago, because Matt and Henry have been here a year, and I was here way before that.

I am reinforcing MY own RESOLVE to LIVE THE TRUTH, to see the truth, to think the truth, to reconginze the truth, and to share that truth with others, and that truth is that we must each of us find our own truth, our own faith in ourselves, and to use that faith to heal ourselves. God bless each of us on our journeys! (((hugs))))

Hello All,

The making-choices piece is what came to me after reading this article this morning and letting it percolate. How at every turn during my encounter with the suckhole I had a choice to make. And I can say I made poor choices. Self-defeating, self-doubting, self-negating choices. I chose to ignore my gut feelings, my rational thoughts, my friendsand therapist’s admonitions, my emotional turmoil. I chose to believe in someone else more than I did myself. I chose fantasy over reality. I had been doing this my entire life.

And the deal is the longer I negated myself, the worse the consequences, until, POOF!, the suckholes began to appear!

I made these choices because I had false beliefs about myself along the lines of “I am not capable of knowing what I want…..I am not deserving of individual attention and care…..I am emotionally disabled……I cannot think for myself…..etc”. Things I learned from my momster (thank-you Henry!), and other abusers from my childhood/past.

And for me too, the encounter has opened me up in such a way that I am learning to live my life as fully awake and aware as I have ever been. I never thought I would hear myself say this. I could not have imagined it two years ago.

I am still ‘shaky’ with this new powersuit, with jet propulsion, on. But I am getting the hang of saying no, and meaning it. Of staying away from anyone who ‘vibes’ me out, without needing to get close enough to ‘validate’ my senses….trusting my guts. Of making comittments to myself, and keeping them. Of resisting the need to always be nice, of manipulating others into loving me because I am. Of not always being ‘helpful’ (thank-you Oxy for your ceaseless examples of what real help is, and is not!).

I have been here about a year, with over two years no contact. I am so grateful for this blog. For the wisdom and truth of healing.

Congratulations to all of us…..where ever we are on our journey of healing and awakening…..Slim

“I saw more value in what the sociopath had to offer me than in what I had in myself.”

I resemble that remark. Very powerful. Thank you for this. I too made lists… mine is here somewhere on LoveFraud Land.

Thanks for sharing your story and about your recovery. Truly

Love this post (love ALL the posts) and it’s that huge shift from them to us that’s the tough bit. We’re many of us, because of our history, primed to give away our power and believe we’re bottom of the heap, last in line, the one who has to MAKE it right and not the one who HAS any rights. When you come out of the fog it’s like being hit by a truck when you see what you’ve allowed. Gotta be kind to ourselves then, instead of turning the hatred inward and creating even more shame.

Slimone you say:

I am still ‘shaky’ with this new powersuit, with jet propulsion, on. But I am getting the hang of saying no, and meaning it. Of staying away from anyone who ’vibes’ me out, without needing to get close enough to ’validate’ my senses”.trusting my guts. Of making comittments to myself, and keeping them. Of resisting the need to always be nice, of manipulating others into loving me because I am. Of not always being ’helpful’ (thank-you Oxy for your ceaseless examples of what real help is, and is not!).

Love it. Me too and I’m working Oxy’s brilliant Silver Rule where I can. Shocked myself the other day when I was doing my bit of voluntary work and instead of letting them put it all on me while they sat about with their heads up their a**ses like I always do I found myself strolling up to the table and in a sing-song voice saying, “I’m doing all the f***ing work” with a sarcastic grimace on my face. They sat there and smiled a bit, one weakly said, “Sorry” and made to move to get up and help. I couldn’t believe the words came out of my head! I think I read in ‘The Betrayal Bond’ that where we usually under-react ie have no boundaries, we have to be aware of not over-reacting too and I think I might have done that as it was new to me to have an opinion and not just do what they wanted me to do. Hee hee. It was funny. My therapist says with practise I’ll get the balance right but maybe a few more folk’ll get an earful first. Oh well. They’ll live. 😛

Dear Becoming!!!! TOWANDA and TOWANDA again!!! Setting those first boundaries –ah jmy goodness how I waffled over how to do it and cried at having to do so. LOL I look kback and I think OMG! What a WOOSEEE I was!

Some (Now) X-friends of ours were staying out here at the farm in their RV (a couple) and I had just returned to the farm and my RV was parked out by the hangar where my food-storage freezers are plugged in and I still hadn’t moved back into my house so I was close to the hangar and in the middle of the night, I actually caught (thanks to my little dog) the woman going into my food freezers and HELPPING HERSELF. Now, mind you, IF SHE HAD ASKED I could have given her the food, but she was SNEAKING and TAKING, which just pithed me off good. I didn’t say anything to her but just looked at her and she turned red and made funny noises trying to think of something to say after being caught red handed.

I was so pithed—but I didn’t have the guts to confront her about it, so I simply started locking the freezers and didn’t say anything about locking them to her, though I quite imagine she found out they were locked.

Eventually, though, I had to confront her and her husband, and I did set boundaries, they didn’t respect it, and so I finally asked them to leave the farm. They have sense violated other boundaries, and this time they contacted us again, after 8 months of not hearing from them, my sons and I have notified them that we are “done” with them and they don’t need to contact us again unless they want to pay back the money they borrowed from my son, and they can MAIL THAT BACK.

These people are not even psychopaths, though the wife of the couple does have some serious issues with sticky finigers, but they were my first effort at setting bondaries with people who were “close to” me. I’ve never had any problem with setting boundaries with people who were NOT family or close friends, but it was almost impossible for me to set a boundary for someone close. I would lay down and let them walk across my back. But no more.

It does feel odd to stand up for yourself though, and like you are being “rude” when in fact, you are just confronting rude. It may not make you “popular” with some folks, but I’m past caring about “popular” lilke I did in 10th grade, if “popular” means I have to walk on egg shells around people who oare walking across my back with hobb-nailed boots.

The thing that is important to remeber, I think, about boundaries is that when you set one, be prepared for the relationship to “go south” if they do not respect you. But I am more than prepared to LOSE the relationships that are not honest and good and in which I am not respected. You keep on Becoming, I think you are doing great!!!! You’ll have those training wheels off in no time. (I used my son for my training wheels, because before I would set a boundary I would ask him “is this a reasonable boundary?” before I set it, I was that unsure of myself! Now I just set the boundary, MY boundary!)

Good morning everyone!
Awesome post and all the comments as well.
Survivor, AWESOME article. I have read and re-read it and will most likely read some more. Each time I come away with something new.

“I was mind raped. No doubt. I lost an innocence, not unlike being a rape victim. The abuse and exploitation is so ambient at times that you don’t even realize what has happened. It is ridden with intermittent generosity and professions of love while your thoughts, actions and behaviors are so closely controlled through undermining manipulation, guilt and shame. You are in a whirlpool of words and actions that are so inconsistent.”
This really hit home with me. When I was growing up, my father had a favorite line we all heard on a regular basis. “Don’t lie, don’t cheat, don’t steal. If you do one, you’re doing all 3.” He was right, too. For me, none of those were an option and I’ve come to see that my ex P. used my morals as a front for all of the lying, cheating and stealing HE was doing. I couldn’t have BEGUN to think up the games he played, using people, all of it. Yet, because of all of this, I believe I will actually learn more and be a stronger person for it. Mind raped? You bet.
TODAY is a different story.

Ox, GREAT point about being prepared for relationships to go “south” when there is no respect. I’ve been dealing with this, as you know and I found out I’m not going to die and the world won’t end if certain people are not in my life. I can’t bend or stretch those boundaries for ANYONE. It’s a new thing I’m working on, but I LIKE it. The power of the word, “NO” is new to me and I practice using it now, a LOT. When I found out my ex P. was using MY computer to meet other women (and men), I locked it down, pass coded it and put parental controls on. Should have seen the fit over that one! I realize now that that was setting a boundary as well and I had already begun, though I didn’t know it. Never did change them like he ordered me to. Like putting the locks on the freezers, it was a big “NO” to them.

recovery, your post is EXCELLENT! Let go, let go, let go. I already copied and pasted this list. For me, being new in this, first I have to recognize it, then I can apply this list to it. I wouldn’t call myself religious, but more spiritual, yet I believe firmly there is a God who is all loving, knowing and seeing.

I learn every single day and I come to LF to do that. I didn’t believe there was anyone who would believe me until I came here. I had gotten SO tired of people telling me it was all in my head. Actually, they were right, just not in the way they thought.
So much of what I learn here, I am now taking it and putting it into action, one day at a time.
Hugs and thank you’s to all,
Cat

Hi everyone,

Haven’t posted in a long time but absolutely loved Donna’s article and had to reply. I’ve been Sociofree for a year now, after a two-year on and off stint with the toxic man. I am happy to report that I am no longer:

– thiking of him daily
– wondering why he did certain things
– planning a revenge
– wondering when he’ll try to call again
– wondering who he’s seeing now
– reading any book I can get my hands on on sociopathy and disordered bhaviours
– talking to others about him
– mssing the way he made me feel when he put on the charm
– reading back his texts and emails
– etc…etc…

I had much the same closure as Donna did in terms of making lists though, of things he took, lies he told me, red flags ignored, which was really eye-opening and therapeutic.

Some of the comments in Donna’s article that really resonated were:

– “mind raped”
– “rotten facade of a fabricated life”
– “damaged beyond repair”
– “scrambled daily to find victims to manipulate to feel superior”
– “needs to see in our reflection to fill the emptiness of their disturbed soul”
– “they get offf on our belief in their lies”

I agree with several of the commentaries that in a way, our encounter with a sociopath has added wisdom to our lives, and helped define more clearly than if we had not gone through the experience, what our belief in ourselves is, and what our personal boundaries are, for relationships and friendships. I am now crystal clear on those boundaries (and have made a few “Please do not contact me again” statements since), and that is very empowering.

We’ve become wise and textured by this encounter with toxic, manipulative and disordered individuals…We’ve learned to profess love to ourselves, as opposed to accept false love professed by an imposter.

Dear Socio-Free,

TOWANDA!!! glad you are still around! Good GOOD post and I am sure it helps others realize tht there IS A LIGHT AT THE END OF THE TUNNEL, and it is NOT an ON-coming train! (((hugs))))

Matt,
Off topic: do you recall the Landmark case allowing the custodial person to move (not have a limit placed on the location of tehir residence)?

PS: your post truly complemented Donna’s article.
Thanks.

Recovering.
Thank you for your post. I have copied and will print it!

Oxy…BTW my mom (who I suspect is about your age) is also a NP. I hear the same stories from her ; )

About Closure with a S/P. I felt/feel with my S/P that he will never give me closure because he doesn’t want it.
He wants it ALL, he wants ALL his GF’s, wives, what ever they are, he dragged the last ex along throughout our engagement.
He dropped his “abusive” parents just weeks before our wedding, but called them up, just months later, like it was no big deal the MINUTE I discovered I was pregnant.

THEY were AWFUL parents, but they’ll be GREAT grandparents….sure.

No closure because they want to keep you “IN CASE”

just MHO

Dear Banana,

I assume you are saying your mother is a nurse practitioner, not a Narssist/psychopath. LOL Does your mom live close to you? Is she supportive of you (I hope)?

Yes, he will string you along as long as he gets any satisfaction (attention) from you, but eventually he will have another woman move to the top of the “I’ll get revenge” list. I feel bad wishing that on anyone, but it is one of those things like “better her than me” feelings–or as we say, “If theya re gossiping about her, they are leaving me alone” (or vice versa)

It could be that one or both of his parents are Ns or Ps, or it could be that they have just “had it” with him, like with my son, it was impossible to be a “good parent” to him after he morphed into a monster.

I assume that your question to matt above was that you are thinking about moving to “India” to get away from him. That might work, it does sometimes, other times the courts won’t let you move out of state.. It just depends, I think, but it might be worth a try! LOL

Just keep on hanging in there and disconnecting the buttons that he is trying to push! If he doesn’t get a reaction he will eventually get tired of no reaction. Just like a rat in a cage that has been programmed to get a treat everytime it pushes the lever, if it gets no treat, it will EVENTUALLY give up on pounding on that lever. YOU just have to be patient and see that he NEVER GETS A TREAT/REWARD. I mean NEVER because if you give him a reward intermittently (once in a while) it will only make him more determined to keep on trying! So hang in there! YOU CAN DO IT. Maybe his OW will get tired of changing diapers and taking care of the baby. Love Oxy

Becoming,

Yeah, it takes awhile. I still do a bit of over-reacting when sticking up for myself, or setting boundaries. It is a practice thing. Total congratulations to you for doing the practice, and going after what you wanted (to be helped).

It may sound weird but I didn’t ‘practice’ these skills (in part) because of my need to be perceived as always doing things ‘right’, and I watched myself not being very good at this, and it made me feel like a dope.

Now, I don’t care, so much, how I look. Now I want to love myself, however awkwardly I may look doing it.

banana:

I’m not sure what state you are in. I have this vague recollection of New York. There was a case that jumped out at me this past year.

An appeals court affirmed a Family Court determination that an upstate woman be allowed to move to Florida with her 12-year-old daughter over the objections of the girl’s father, even though the appeals judges conceded the father demonstrated “unquestionable fitness” as a parent.

An Appellate Division, Third Department, panel ruled unanimously that Broome County Family Court Judge Peter P. Charnetsky properly exercised his discretion in the custody and visitation case, including weighing statements by Tami R. Winston’s daughter that she would prefer to move away from New York with her mother.

“Notwithstanding the existence of evidence demonstrating that the father is a good parent, we conclude that a preponderance of the evidence exists to support Family Court’s determination that relocation of the child with the mother was in the child’s best interest,” Justice Leslie E. Stein wrote for the panel in Winston v. Gates, 504284.

In 2007 Ms. Winston petitioned Family Court seeking to change the terms of the 2002 order of custody in which both she and Dennis L. Gates, (father who she never married), received joint legal custody of their daughter. The mother was the primary caregiver under the arrangement. Ms. Winston was subsequently diagnosed with a degenerative disc disease that forced her to stop working and to need help caring for her daughter.

Facing the exhaustion of her resources in New York, she asked Family Court for approval to move with her daughter to Florida, where her parents offered Ms. Winston free room and board and parenting help. She had only a boyfriend and a few relatives to depend on in Broome County.

Mr. Gates countered by seeking primary custody. He argued that he and his current wife could provide his daughter with a stable living arrangement in New York without the disruption of the move to Florida.

Judge Charnetsky ruled that the girl’s primary residence should continue to be with her mother and that the father should get what the Third Department called “extensive” visitation rights of six weeks during the summer, one week at Christmas and one week during spring break. The judge required Ms. Winston to provide transportation for two of those visits as well as a cell phone to allow her daughter to have frequent direct conversations with Mr. Gates.

According to the appeals panel, both parents were “active participants” in raising their child and both had developed a strong relationship with her. The court still found that the stronger bond had been developed between the mother and daughter.

As far as the father was concerned, the panel noted that he
had remarried and that his daughter would have had to share a room with another child had he been granted legal custody of the girl. Having as many as four other children to look after in New York, Mr. Gates would be left with “limited time” to spend exclusively with his daughter, the court decided.

ONe thing you have to be aware of banana, is that while relocation cases are the flavor of the month in domestic relations, you still have to present a compelling reason why it is in your child’s best interests for you to relocate. Among those reasons would be that you can only find a job in your new location. I note that even then, if the courts grant that, you would still be on the hook for at least 1/2 of your child’s transportation costs back and forth to visit his father, no matter what your income is compared to his.

“…and the will to walk away alone and create my own closure.”

This is such a powerful and true statement. So often, I see people on this site craving “closure”. If they could just have one more conversation with S to find out “why”. If they could just sit down face-to- face with S. ETc, etc, etc.

The problem with that logic is that you are making closure dependent on S. And the problem with closure is that it is circular in that it works like this — you dump all your anger and crap all over S. S then is going to demand reciprocal closure and he dumps his anger and crap all over you. Now you’re mad and dump all over S again. Etc., etc., etc.

I think it is helpful for those seeking closure to view it in the same context as forgivenessd. Forgiveness isn’t about you forgiving the other person. Forgiveness is something you do for yourself so that you can move forward with your life.

So, the author has it right — she walked away to create her own closure. View it another way — when we preach NC on this site, that is your way to walk away — and give yourself closure.

Donna and all of you survivors: Bad day for me today.
My s/p who kept his my space girls even after we were married really has mind raped me, what a term, but that’s the damage he has done. Today I went to the lab to get lab work to make sure I dont have any STD’s….he continues to humiliate me even while gone…on pins and needles waiting on final divorce decree. It will be some closure, but not all closer…I hear zero tolerance loud and clear, I hear boundaries loud and clear…sad part it is NOW…and wasn’t THEN. So sad today, so hurt and embarrassed.
Somedays I am together and strong and unmoveble, but today the testing, the lab work just devastated me. Thank you Donna for reminding me of important things like you spoke about and about going on.

one/joy_step_at_a_time

Dear Clovis50,

Good for you for taking care of yourself by going for testing, and for doing what you have done to get ‘here and now.’

best,
one step

Folks,

I’m glad you liked the article at the beginning of this post, but I can’t take credit for it. The article was submitted by a reader who wanted to remain anonymous.

Der Clovis,

I’m so sorry about your humiliation and pain, but like “one step” so nicely put it, you are HERE NOW! (((HUGS))) AND MY PARYAER FOR YOU!!!

Thank you everyone for being so kind in your remarks. It means so much to me

banana and others, your point about no closure with them because the N/S don’t want it — they want to keep us on the radar just “IN CASE.”

About 6 months into dating, the guy I dated for 1.5 yrs. on and off began to “touch base” periodically with two ex GF’s — or they with him — even though he said they’d had negative endings with. I guess when they see us wising up, not as enamored after a while and setting firmer boundaries/expectations, it’s like they rebel (like adolescents, not grown-ups who understand there are limits). The N/S then try to imply the women are coming on to them, attempting to create drama through triangulations. They want us to think they always have these options — even if their exes are in other relationships — even as they try to limit our choices/options. Double-standards and deceitful!

Really strange when you think about it — IT’S AS IF TIME STANDS STILL FOR THEM, as if other people don’t change and move on with their lives or have relationships with new people, or as if the N/S believe it’s so easy to just pick back up where they left off after being away from someone for months and years.

I rarely if ever talk with most of my long-gone exes, not because of bad feelings, but because there is no real point; why complicate things — especially if I’m in a budding new relationship. With the exes I do talk to more often (my son’s father and one guy who transitioned into being a very good male friend) — I don’t even think about sex with them or reconnecting simply because we/our lives are different and there usually isn’t much left to rekindle after having “been there, done that.”

THESE N/S PEOPLE TRULY ARE CASES OF ARRESTED DEVELOPMENT.

recovering:

My S-ex did the same thing. I now see that he got off keeping me in play with his exes. I call what they do with their exes “garaging.” The keep them in the garage until its in their best interests to take the ex out for a spin and drive you crazy.

I got rid of S over a year ago. Six months ago I started dating a great guy. Occasionally, one of us may reference an ex — but it’s in passing. At this stage of our lives, we’ve all got baggage. My only care is whether the baggage is organized in the baggage compartment. Anybody who pretends they don’t have a past has their own issues which I don’t want to deal with. A healthy perspective on your past, acknowledging it when necessary, but leaving it in the past, is the sign of a healthy individual.

Matt, I like your point about them “garaging” exes. In hindsight, I see the gaminess of it all, because my thought is, if someone is still that prominent, why not just go back and give it another try. But no, the N/S wanted to keep the new relationship unbalanced — because that’s how they operate. And if we’re not careful, it can be easy to assume the exes are the problem, when really this approach shows symptoms/red flags on the part of the disordered person.

Like you said, we all have baggage. But immature people can try to drive you crazy with innuendo. It sure isn’t the best way to establish trust so new into a relationship by hinting about exes who are still flirting with them. Even when my exes flirted, I took responsibility for handling things so I wouldn’t send mixed messages to the new guy — my former N/S.

I once told my ex-N/S that I’m was willing to have old people from the past still in my life, but it would not be fair for me to burden him with nonsense. If I was uncertain, I would just say so, not make him think he couldn’t compete with what must have been my glorious past (yea right — exes are usually exes for a reason, the saying goes).

I once read a list of steps involved in internet “seduction” — and creating uncertainty advised as a way to help someone boost his value, if he can show that others also want him. To me, common sense would say that if I like someone, there are others who’ll like him too — so I don’t take people for granted, and don’t take well to someone taking me for granted either.

Like you said Matt, putting the past in perspective is a sign of a healthy individual.

Recovering, you have very good common sense. thanks for posting your insights. The P’s ability to “pop up” in their old friends’ lives reminds me of the song “POP GOES THE WEASEL”! LOL!

one/joy_step_at_a_time

Matt,

another dupe of my spath’s is suing her for fraud. I have just started coresponding with her. She mentioned the possibility of a class action suit.

How many folks does it take to make a class action suit?

one step

Donna,
your article was just the closure/validation that I needed to find within myself. When I stopped trying to get an apology – or even an addmission of his lies…. the S no longer had any power over me. I kept trying to have a heart-heart and he kept lying. This only prolonged my pain and validated HIS need to feel important and powerful. Your method of making lists was my roadmap out of the crazy-making! Thanks so much! Cheers to all of us Survivors – we can’t change others but we CAN make ourselves even better than ever!

AbuDhabiEyes,

You are so right! QUOTE: ” we can’t change others but we CAN make ourselves even better than ever! “

Matt,

First of all thanks Matt…my family lives 3 hours away…I have no support system here. I could live with my family, pay off my attorney fees with no rent to pay, AND make more money because teachers get paid more in that county.

The reason I ask is because S/P is using mileage as a bargaining chip…I will never get the 220 miles I need in the bargain. Only 60 miles in EXCHANGE for an additional night every other week FOR S/P.

SO I am considering settling for the 35 miles he is offering, knowing I have a secure job and won’t HAVE to move any time soon, and NOT letting him have the additional night.

In the future, when I suspect he will stop visiting so much and (he is already dropping our son in the care of others’) may be in arrears, I would like the HOPEFULL option to petition the court to move.

Cheers,
Banana

recovery,

Wow this topic of “garaging” past lovers is triggering me.

Just another reminder of all the red flags we ignored.

I was able to actually get the story from the Ex love whom my S/P slept with and even got pregnant just months before our wedding.
Red flags…pics of various women whom he would explain were just friends and repeated contact with the ex ie: exchanging belongs each one had of the other’s for a few months into our relationship, a gift from her of concert tickets (said she couldn’t go, but why were there two? I can’t remember what she said of that, but I suspect they were supposed to go together since concert tickets are usually purchased months is advance….they also played PS2 online together). Boink!!!! Wish OXy was there to say, “HELLO????? and wake me out of my stuppor with a CAST iron skillet.

There were others I am sure.

But closure for us is yes….STOP WONDERING, STOP ASKING THE QUESTIONS, and I think I need to start some lists.
START FOCUSING ON OURSLEVES.

PEACE AND JOY TO ALL AT LF in this holiday season.
-Banana

Good Morning.

Wow… today is NC with “N”/”S” for six weeks. This has been a difficult year for me.

I so happy to have had a little peace this last week and the thoughts of him changing. I’m not angry but feeling compassion for another wounded soul himself. It won’t help me or him to be together so it has to be this way.

Don’t like it but for both it’s the best. I am trying to recover and do my own work. He doesn’t admit he has work to do so therefore there is no work being done on his part.

I know how difficult it is for me to stop and think about my problems and do the work so I know he has a long way to go if we were to ever be around each other again at all.

I would be so triggered if he called or I saw him. No contact has finally begun to take stress out of my life.
Again, I don’t like having to go through this. I literally threw up from the pain when I had enough. Can’t believe it almost but that’s how sick I had become in July.

Holidays are difficult. Hang in there anyone struggling today. It gets better.

Dear Sotired,

NC will give you the emotional space to start to recover–congratulations!!! When we break contact it sets us back to SQUARE ONE.

Don’t pity him, however, he is what he is, and pitying him, feeling sorry for him, will usually be counter productive to your healing and moving on. He IS WHAT HE IS, AND HE HAS A CHOICE—just like you do. But he doesn’t see a need to change, or want to change. NOTHING you could ever do would motivate him to want to change. Nothing anyone could do would motivate him to change. But he DOES have a choice. We all do.

Making healthy choices for yourself is a good thing, and the only thing any of us can do. Setting boundaries with others, and enforcing those boundaries will protect us.

It was so hard for me to set boundaries with people I had relationships with of any kind and I walked on egg shells around them to avoid hurting their feelings while they walked all over me with golf shoes with spikes—but no more.

Hang in there and stay strong on the path to healing and you will get there! Take care of YOU!!!

Sotired,

YES. Do hang in there. No Contact is SO important.

I too got cought up in thinking he was a torutred soul and was the product of his environment…heck, for many of us that was why we loved them, we wanted to help them, then we thought our love could change them; help them to be a better person.
They are SO caught up in their pathology that they CAN NOT change. HE is NOT aware of his illness.

Stay in NC for you. YOU are the only one YOU have CONTROL over. If it makes you feel any better…yes NC is also best for him, he WILL only get WORSE if you ENABLE him. SO STOP enabling his ILLNESS AND keep AWAY…FAR FAR AWAY.

Wishing you the best!
BAnana

skylar, another “common sense” thought regarding your point about the P’s ability to “pop up” in their old loves/friends’ lives: What these disordered people do is try to make you feel you are worthless and have to jump through hoops and fill voids in them that no one can possibly do — or be for another person.

They do anything to keep the upper hand and make you feel devalued and unappreciated. They do not consider what is fair and reasonable, because they want to keep you suspended in uncertainty.

I’ve never told my full story here on Lovefraud. When I arrived at this site, I was struggling about limited contact/no contact because I felt obligated to allow the ex-N/S to be part of my life since I still owed him money he had loaned me for my start-up business (I love working from home, which means I have flexible time to do my ongoing healing coming here on Lovefraud to learn, and keep up with my work as well).

My ex is 44 and I’m 47. He had no kids and was an only child. I have a 13 y/o son. We had discussed marriage and possibly him working with me in my business. At the time we met, he was caring for his elderly dad at their home and did not have to work full-time himself.

But my ex N/S became more abusive (limited physically, but primarily emotionally) and I started attacking back when he tried to assault my self-esteem in different ways, and it became draining. I felt I was in the twilight zone at times because — despite being a thinking person — I didn’t ever really know what the “real issues” were as we began arguing a lot. I would be open and honest about what I wanted and how I felt about most things. There obviously were hidden agendas on his part, but he wouldn’t take ownership for anything.

I had been so appreciative of him loaning me money, but the price I paid was having a man who almost took over my life.
He once told me, “You can’t get away from me” and said if I left, no one would want to deal with me because I was so difficult — I guess because I had a sense of self when I met him and resisted his attempts at control, even though I had no idea how far he would go with me with “mind f**k until much later.

He confused me a lot — I had reasonable expectations, standards and values which he said he also shared, yet we often had “tension” and “uneasiness.” He said hurtful things out of the blue — from no where — even once told me he needed to find him another woman because my self-esteem was “too high.” WHAT?????

When I started setting clearer boundaries — tellling him I couldn’t see him as much because I had to focus on my work, me and my son more, even though I still wanted the relationship with him at the time — that’s when he upped the games, telling me his exes were available, reminiscing more about his past, making innuendos, etc. It was a way to de-stabilize my confidence, for him to get more attention — as if to say if you’re not there (for sex, attention,etc.), someone else will be.

Despite my flexibility with him, providing support and assistance and other action that demonstrated I was real and cared for him, he imposed the “world” onto me — made me feel “invisible” as if I were not an individual, suggested I was part of the collective world that he didn’t trust. He complained about people in the “system/” government — as if trying to make me responsible for all the bad things that had happened to him (I’m sure now he had a role in all of it). He created more drama — with various mind games, increasing contact with exes because he needed someone to “talk” to, and insinuating abandonment of our relationship.

He did so much “testing” of me to get me to prove I was a good person — to wear me down so he could gain full control over me.

I finally told him I didn’t give a damn if he couldn’t fully see and appreciate me, and I refused to hear another complaint unless he was planning to take action and come up with solutions. As I continued to feel I was not seen or heard and my boundaries were not respected, I started withdrawing even though I still felt love and hoped we could work things out.

By the end of the 1.5 year relationship, I had been bombarded with so much non-sense and ambient/emotional abuse, I knew it would be difficult to even try a friendship with him.

I so get why people on this site say total NC is necessary. As I continue No Contact, I have regained my bearings. I no longer feel guilty for not giving him access to my life just because I owe him money. Because of my integrity, I will pay him back. But I’ve already told him I plan to deduct some of the $25 K he loaned me since he took so much of my time with his neediness and in many ways, I provided “counseling” and lots of practical, day-to-day support for him and his dad that money cannot buy.

Based on odd things he later said and “confessed,” I now look back and think he loaned me the money as an “investment” in me — thinking he would get at least double his money back once my business took off, and probably never intended to have a legitimate relationship that could have led to marriage as I’d hoped.

I think he wanted me to “save” his life — as if he wanted to “absorb” me. He verbalized several times that he “owned” me.

I also realize he wanted me to do the major managing and mental work for our relationship while he could coast and “play” — no responsibility for issues, no sincere apologies for hurtful words and actions that he thought I should just let it all go.

He always wanted to accompany me when I had business and other errands to do, but rarely invited me to go on his routine errands except events when he needed my direct help.

He was moody and would punish me with silent treatment for not reading his mind — as if I should have known how he felt and taken care of something he didn’t make me aware of.

He could tell me he loved me one minute, then turn around and lie to me or attempt to destroy my sense of worth the next minute.

He would attend professional networking events with me and focus later on all that was negative about the situation, and what was wrong with the people who attended. He took pride in pointing out others’ flaw and shortcomings.

Rather than figure out what he needed to do to make his life more balanced with new hobbies or male and female friends (he had very few), he would engage in out-loud “criminal thinking” and ask me about potential scams to get a reaction from me, then when I said there was no way I would do something illegal for a man or anyone for that matter, he’d say he was kidding and had no intentions of doing some of the illegal things he’d previously suggested.

He seemed intelligent and responsive when I started discussions, but also seemed to change his disposition on important things including his “values” a lot.

Come to think of it, I see now that he had no real rich inner life. He simply could not appreciate small things, notice little progress or value beauty in everyday life. Nothing was ever “enough.” He had a negative orientation toward everything and nothing could ever be innocent. I began to question and suspect everything he ever said or did.

It all became too mind-boggling, too much/ too taxing. WHO THE HELL WAS THIS PERSON? TALK ABOUT CONFUSED…

Now, with his absence from my life, I am returning to a calmer and saner place. With distance, I can clearly see things for the non-sense so much of it was. I can now know not to take him seriously. He enjoys the game more than having a real life.

I still owe him money, but I know my intentions. I also know I am responsible for my own well-being.

recovering,
so much of what you wrote reminds me of my own X-Periences!

The difference between us is that you had some very real boundaries and expectations, which I did not because I was 17 when I met mine. I’m surprised that your xP would even target you, but it sounds like you have benefited very much from the X-Perience. In addition to starting your business, you have learned the fundamentals of the N/S/P’s – not bad for a year and a half investment. Pat yourself on the back.

I’ve come to the conclusion that there was and is no REAL X-P. He makes up a new personality from moment to moment as the need arises or if one facet doesn’t work he will shift that portion to the 180 degrees of what he was channelling a moment earlier. I’ve recently learned that he is actually mimicking one of his other “n-supply friends” for a portion of his personality.

But the negativety which you mention, THAT seems constant. It’s the part of them that they can’t hide, they really do hate everyone and everything. They have no good will towards anyone. They have an overwhelming feeling of being cheated and impoverished so they want everyone else to feel the same way. They want everyone to feel the envy that they feel and the shame that they feel. Because my xP projects (he accuses others of what he is actually thinking) I’ve come to realize that he is a sadist who gets very excited at the thought of pictures of people suffering (nazi concentration camp pictures). I know this because he told me that my P-sister and P-BIL would really enjoy such pictures.

Skylar,
How ARE you…?
I think you really have a point there. Watching the progression from the ground up….I see the disorder maturing in a sense. Although there is a very immature quality to the behavior that manifest within this disorder….There is a definate pattern with the “projection” part of it. When I first found myself in this situation having his feelings/behavior/personality traits, projected back onto me….I wasn’t quite sure what was going on. I thought it manipulation….And although this CAN manipulate a situation as I see more and more of it happening it is a definate projection of themselves onto others.

It is something difficult to understand. And I am still coming to terms with this. What I have come to understand more recently is THIS REALLY IS the most honest form of communication you will ever recieve from a person with this disorder. Projection is how an S/P/N communicates to you because they can’t tell the truth in a regular conversation.

skylar and witsend, your additional comments really help me to see the absolute insanity of people who try to make others feel crazy. The projections of the N/S/P, their distortions of reality (what we say and do, our values), and trying to view us as if we were them — all ways to invalidate us, and diminish the very best positive qualities we possess.

In their need to control, they’d be happy if we became depressed as a result of their worldview and depended on them as the only respite from the rest of the “big old bad world.”

Not a chance. I’ll take my version of reality — there is both good and bad in the world — albeit now much wiser in knowing there are people beyond help, whose personalities that are so disordered — and their issues so ingrained — that they won’t ever acknowledge what’s real.

Hi Skylar and recovering,

Skylar: Just saw you on the board, and haven’t for a time and want to say hi, and glad you are still around.

Reading over the last few posts it struck me (once again!) how the projection stuff is baffling when we don’t know what is happening. All the huffing and puffing to make themselves look bigger so we will feel the lack and envy that they suffer from, and will not acknowledge. All the threats of abandonment, running hot and cold, so we will feel the fear and loneliness that they won’t. The constant manipulations to create stress reactions in us, so that we are more easily ‘handled’, and feel the devastating emptiness that they live in. The baiting and switching of subjects to make us angry, so we can get a taste of the rage they embody.

It goes on and on.

On deeper and deeper levels I understand how no single movement they make is anything more than the distortion they suffer from. Every move is a defense mechanism, protecting the malignant and angry ego. It is all a giant, horrible, temper-tantrum.

As I have looked back, and through hearing some ‘current events’ of the S-ex, I have begun to see how important it is for these creatures to move on. How much they need naive, nice, new, needy, ignorant people to engage with. Because anyone who has finally opened their eyes to The Disorder of psychopathology, can see every move exactly for what it is. Their sickness becomes SO blatant once we know HOW to see it. Once we see the pattern, experience the repeated betrayals, the false tears, the flattery that is followed by deception, the disarming charm applied only for personal gain.

I was watching something last night and one of the characters asked “Why does he DO that?”. And his friend answered “That’s like asking ‘why do birds sing?’, and the answer is because that is what birds DO”.

Psychopaths only do what they do. They don’t do anything else. It is an endless hamster wheel of lies and manipulations, because they are psychopaths.

I on the other hand, yipee!, have choices. Lots and lots of them, that I can make to live a peaceful, civil, loving, fortified, REAL life. Even more so now that I am not disabled by my personal attraction to chaos and destruction (which I most certainly was).

Oh, meant to include witsend in my greeting to recovering and Skylar. Oops.

slimone — thank you for putting into well-summarized words what I experienced: “All the threats of abandonment, running hot and cold, so we will feel the fear and loneliness that they won’t. The constant manipulations to create stress reactions in us, so that we are more easily ’handled’, and feel the devastating emptiness that they live in. The baiting and switching of subjects to make us angry…It goes on and on.”

I WAS HEARTBROKEN TO REALIZE I WAS SLEEPING WITH THE ENEMY, a MAN I ONCE HOPED TO MARRY. I KNOW NOW THE LOVE HE PROFESSED WAS NOT REAL, BUT MEANT FOR MANIPULATION JUST AS THE MONEY HE’D LOANED ME FOR BUSINESS.

AND THEY TRY TO MAKE US OUT TO BE “DEMANDING” OR “DIFFICULT” FOR CONFRONTING BULLS–T AS IT UNFOLDS, BLAMING US WHEN WE DO NOT NOT BUY INTO THEIR NON-SENSE.

Well said slimone, “I have begun to see how important it is for these creatures to move on. How much they need naive, nice, new, needy, ignorant people to engage with. Because anyone who has finally opened their eyes to The Disorder of psychopathology, can see every move exactly for what it is. Their sickness becomes SO blatant once we know HOW to see it. Once we see the pattern, experience the repeated betrayals, the false tears, the flattery that is followed by deception, the disarming charm applied only for personal gain.”

Dear Recovering,

I think we were dating the SAME MAN–mine tried to ‘buy me things” but got angry when I refused (I am absolutely paranoid about taking money or “gifts” from others because too many times it comes with a PRICE TAG that is not “reasonable interest”) My egg donor used to always try to give me money too, which I refused—because I knew it was a down payment on CONTROL and GUILT. LOL

Yes OxDrover, we can LOL.

When this many people have the same experience and there are the same patterns, there is something to it. I had hesitated for a long time in viewing my ex as a Sociopath, starting out with a belief that he was mainly NPD. But with time, it is clearer to me — I “know with humility” and such knowledge is freeing, even if tinged with sadness.

I took the day off from work today for the most part except for a few business errands (having one’s own business allows such flexibility, but I’m working the whole weekend) because I knew I was at a turning point mentally and emotionally in this journey, where I was letting go more about what was and accepting more what is.

I needed reinforcement with my ongoing No Contact and the determination to move forward and put this whole N/S experience in perspective and eventually behind me.

Lovefraud warriors — you have not failed me.

All of you who provided insights from your own experiences today added to my accumulating wisdom and sense of relief.

It has been my pleasure to spend much of the day at this site on and off — for healing time.

I’m signing off for the night, and send my regards to you all.

I text the liar an told him that basically he’s a user con artist that he uses woman for money to forget he ever knew me and all he done to me is gonna come back on him! I know it really dont matter to him but to me this is my closure, He have a lot of things from when me an my kids was living at his place that he wont return he keep ignoring me asking for my things back so i just got fed up a told him fuck you! to keep the things because he is petty. NC is my goal I don’t never wanna talk to that sob again. I got used and played

Send this to a friend