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By | May 9, 2012 88 Comments

LETTERS TO LOVEFRAUD: Listen to your inner voice

Editor’s note: Lovefraud recently received the following email from a reader.

When I met my husband, 14 years ago, I owned my own home, had two children, a great job and life was great. I wasn’t looking for a relationship, however, he would not take no for an answer until I went out with him (1st red flag). He presented himself as financially secure, a family man with a daughter, and who told me family is everything . He was very charming and giving to my children and I.

After 5 months of dating, he started telling me how much he loved me and wanted to marry me. I said that I wasn’t ready to jump into marriage again after being married for 12 years. However, he never let up. He kept saying that I had no idea what a great life we could have together and that all he wanted to do was make me happy and provide a wonderful life for myself and children. We married 7 months later and my life has never been the same.

He changed the very night of our marriage. It was like he flipped a switch not even consummating our marriage on our wedding night. He immediately got the attitude of “I have you now.” He moved into my house with nothing but a suitcase of his clothes, never even asking me if I wanted anything from his house. He started not wanting to drive to pick up his daughter to see her. Told me he didn’t want to have to go to every family function of his family. He started becoming distant to my children as well.

That was just the beginning of a mountain of lies and deception I started to uncover 9 months into our marriage. I started noticing that any time I asked him a question about anything, he became angry and verbally abusive. When it became time to do our taxes the first year of our marriage, I asked him if he had his own accountant. He said, let’s use yours. So we did. We both sat in front of my accountant and my husband NEVER flinched when asked certain questions. He again was extremely charming, funny and articulate, seeming to be capable of a lot.

Well, a few months later, I received a letter in the mail from the IRS stating they were withholding our refund of $6,000 due to my husband NOT paying his taxes the previous 4 years!! His response to the letter was, “SO!” He used MY interest on my mortgage, my children, my everything as deductions because he NEVER paid his bills, was in serious debt and his house (which he owned with two other people) was going into foreclosure!! I found out it was all a facade. But yet, he kept telling me that I was making more of the situation, that it wasn’t as bad as it seemed. Oh no, it was much worse.

And here I am, 13 years later, finally getting a divorce because, you see, it is not that easy to get away from a person like this. I went from an outgoing, smart, independent woman to a woman with no self esteem, trust issues and just plain scared. I am ashamed to admit this and believe me, would never, never, have thought this could have happened to me! My story is so much worse and so many other things have happened, that this is just a glimpse into this nightmare. But it has and I am trying to move on with my life to get back to the person I once was.

Please don’t think this could never happen to you. When people show you who they are, BELIEVE them the first time (Oprah) and move on. Don’t ever believe it is in your head, as told to me. It is not. Listen to your inner voice. If it just doesn’t feel right, it is NOT. TRUST YOURSELF MORE THAN YOU TRUST ANYONE.


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clair

I am so sorry this happened to you. Good to hear you’re recovering.

I love the last lines of your essay:
“Listen to your inner voice. If it just doesn’t feel right, it is NOT. TRUST YOURSELF MORE THAN YOU TRUST ANYONE.”

Amen!!

snowwhite

I keep reading about how women have heard an inner voice warning and ignored if. I just read it in Sarah Tates book web of lies …..I too had this internal voice telling me to get out. It happened while I was riding in the car with him to pick up his children on Christmas. This weird feeling came over me …..in my head I was telling myself he can not be trusted…..get out of the car…..but I ignored it. I felt safer when his son was with us.

The next time i felt it was when I wax at his house in new years eve but didn’t have my car do I was stuck there. I even texted a friend to come and get me….she had been drinking and couldn’t drive so I stayed. Eventually the signs became clearer and I ended it! Although I was sti unsure when it ended, his ex girlfriend confirmed sooo many lies. She recently told me that the emotional abuse she experienced will be with her forever. I was so brainwashed from the idealization phase that I didn’t want to believe what was staring me in the face.

Good luck to you in your recovery!

Ox Drover

I can say AMEN to this, the inner voice is so important. In my divorce I didn’t listen to this voice and I was blind sided….I DID NOT WANT TO BELIEVE that my husband did not love me. I was blinded by my love for him.

I DID listen (finally) to my inner voice when I was dating the P BF after my husband died…but I was pulled into wanting a relationship so badly, because I felt no one else would ever love me after my husband died…thank GOD I did listen that time.

I didn’t listen to my inner voice with my P son Patrick…for so long, but finally I realized if I didn’t run his Trojan Horse psychopath would kill me.

so sometimes I listened and sometimes I did not, but EVERY time I did not, it was a DISASTER of huge proportions.

That inner voice is our intuition warning us…just like the rabbit senses the fox, and if he listens, he stays alive, if he gets distracted he does not.

I watched a rabbit grazing once…and as my son and I approached, we could see his ears turning every which way, and the birds above us chirped out a warning to him, and we saw him become tense and move closer to a brush pile in which he could find safety from a fox or other predator. We stood still and the birds became quiet and the rabbit relaxed again…if we had been a fox, he might not have survived. so listen! LISTEN!!! LISTEN!!!

snowwhite

Oxy,

I wish I could articulate those feelings better….all I know is that I would find myself staring at him thinking to myself who is this man and why am I here! He told me his ex gf would stare at him too.
A couple of times when I watched and listened to him as he was speaking with me…..I swear I saw a glimpse of the devil in him…..evil eyes and this cackling laugh….definitely a moment when the mask was slipping

What I know now is that while he was pressuring me to leave my husband and when I did leave, he was still pursuing any chance he had to get with another woman. He had no intention if being exclusively with me. I finally started to SEE it!

I will never ignore my inner voice again!

Ox Drover

Snowwhite when someone is pressuring you to do something that you know is wrong that inner voice is your conscience….and it is ALWAYS wrong to not listen to it. The psychopaths though are so slick sometimes that they make us believe that they are right and that we should go against our conscience, our moral compass.

They make black seem white and white seem black…but we need to listen to that still small voice and not tell it to shut up.

The psychopaths have no conscience because they have no moral compass so they have no trouble doing what they want to do no matter who it hurts. they can steal candy from a baby and not feel any guilt.

clair

I think I ignored my inner voice because I was trained to do so as a child. So, I went thru life ignoring or doubting my voice within but eventually I finally realized that I allowed myself (consented) to be held captive by Ns & SPs. Then (Thank Gd) something happened & I woke up and then I finally began to listen to my voice within and to never ignore it again.

Ox Drover

Clair, I think when parents teachers and leaders don’t allow us to feel our feelings,

“You shouldn’t feel that way”

We learn that our feelings don’t matter and shouldn’t matter….so we learn to quiet the inner voice and accept the reality bestowed on us by our “betters.”

snowwhite

Oxy

Thank you…I do see what you mean about th not having a moral compass. What scares me is that he eventually eroded mine. It was bit by bit…until right from wrong was blurred. He even made a comment to me that haunts me. He said that at first I was reluctant to even hug him and now I had sex with him x number of times….almost degrading me for doing it with him. But I thought we were making love….obviously he thought different.

I’m seeing a new counselor this week. I hope I’ll get more help from this one….the last one I saw doesnt really get what I went through and doesn’t want to talk about what happened and help me process it. She only wants me to focus on my marriage. I think before I can do that I need to work through what happened with me and the path, right??????

G1S

There was a man I thought I could fall in love with, but something held me back.

He wasn’t married, but he was my son’s therapist.

When my son was taken by my P sister, the therapist locked the door to his office, which he had never done before, and sat so close me on the couch that our thighs were almost touching. He had never done anything like that before. He had always sat on the other side of the room.

I rationalized that he was doing this because I was so upset over my son being taken and was offering me comfort. For a few brief seconds, I wondered if he was coming on to me, but I shook it off because it would have been so preposterous under the circumstances.

OMG-know what I realized just now as I wrote that? He never locked the door before or sat next to me because this was the first time we had ever been alone! My son had always been present the other times.

Anyway, he did it again the following week, locking the door and sitting very close to me.

I was a little flattered this time. We knew that my son was going to be returned to me. That crisis was over.

I decided that if the therapist did that a third time, I would lean over and offer him a kiss.

I was very vulnerable.

Not only did he do that, but he found the attorney who helped me get my son back. This therapist was rapidly turning in my personal hero.

Lots of other things happened, but that was as physical as it got.

For example, he emailed at all times of the day. He called my therapist while he was on vacation to talk about me. (I had given him permission to talk with her about how to help my son recover from his kidnapping.) He never brought up my son.

He made my son’s appointments personally rather than letting his receptionist handle them.

Even my therapist got into the act. She was pushing for us to become a couple. Her “spirit guides” told her that we were meant to be my son’s parental unit. I thought she was nuts so I ignored that.

This man kept calling my therapist. It became a standing joke, “Has he talked with you about my son yet?”

We had many things in common. We ended up attending the same church.

He offered to help me sign my son up for Sunday School.

We had a small conflict, so at 5:25 AM on the Sunday morning in question, he sent me an email saying not to let the conflict keep us from showing up at church. He’d meet us there. He was a no-show for the Sunday School sign-up, but later I saw him glaring down at me from the balcony after the church service.

I wanted to flip him the bird, but then I found myself switching into a stupid romantic mode calling him a poor man for suffering so much at my hands.

He would later twist this around into “some stalking behavior” on my part, except the moron didn’t realize that I had originally joined this church in April 1986, long before my son was even conceived.

Throughout all of this, my warning bells were going off.

I knew that my saying he was suffering because of me was way off. Why did I do that?

He blurred so many boundaries that my therapist and I nicknamed him, “The man for whom boundaries have no meaning.”

Something was very wrong. My therapist should have called a halt to it. I tried to. I told him that I was terminating him. She was furious that I did that and pushed very hard for me to return my son to him.

My warning bells were accentuated by the fact that I knew that I would have normally thrown myself into a mad, passionate love affair with such a kind and brilliant man. (It really didn’t help that I thought he was jaw-dropping gorgeous and reeked of breath-taking masculinity from the first day that we met.)

Eventually, I began sensing that this man was capable of hitting a woman. I don’t know where I got those ideas from. I still don’t have any real reasons for thinking that, but that’s what I felt. I had never picked up on that from any other men that I knew.

What finally did it for me was that one time when we were walking out together from a session, I instinctively held back and bowed my head to let him go by. That ticked him off. He angrily waved me to go first.

As soon as I realized what I did, I recognized my behavior. Those were “safety” actions that I would take to protect myself from my mother. I was protecting myself. I was expecting to get hit. If she went first, there would be no unseen blows coming from behind.

So, for all the insanity that I was going through because of my P sister and S mother, I had these two therapists to contend with as well.

Things ended very badly between me and my son’s therapist.

Before they ended, my son ran away for a night and ended up being hospitalized again for suicidal ideation. Then this therapist ended up abandoning my son while he was in an outpatient program.

The degree of betrayal almost killed me, literally.

I told the therapist that I came “this close” to committing suicide because I couldn’t imagine how horrible I must be that a therapist would abandon a child, who had been through so much and who was in such a vulnerable state, because of that child’s mother. I must have been a monster, and all the messages from my P sister and S mother must have been true.

My gut served me well. Despite all the pressures pushing me to having a relationship with this man, my warning bells told me to hold off, hold off, something is wrong here.

My son was devastated by the deep betrayal of his therapist (who told the outpatient program that he wasn’t that important to my son because he had only seen him off-and-on during the nine years that he had been his client.)

It was very hard on me when all this happened, but ultimately, I came out of it with my head held high and my son safe.

Ox Drover

Snowwhite, you need to work on what YOU need to work on in counseling is my opinion, so changing counselors is what you need to do since YOU feel like you need to work on the spathy events.

You can’t work on your marriage til you get that out of your head is my opinion as well. I think maybe you and hubby might also see a counselor so you could work on them at the same time, but you need some private time with a counselor for the spathy episode I think. Just my opinion.

snowwhite

Oxy

Lol….definitely a spathy episode! I love how you describe it! Unless you’ve experienced it….you just don’t know.

We are in counseling. My husband just wants to sweep it under the rug and move on. I’m having a hard time. I’m angry because I think his behavior and allowing him to treat me the way he has brought me to a place where I believed the path could give me everything I was missing in my life. I almost feel like I need to be alone! I guess I just have to take it one day at a time.

Thanks for all the help you are giving on this site:)

clair

I agree, Oxy.
So sorry to hear about your finger, but you are doing an amazing job typing! You rule, girl!! feel better soon.

darwinsmom

g1S,

Wow, what a total creep!!!!! If you think back on that now, I’m sure your head ust be reeling on how WRONG it is for a therapist to LOCK his office with you in it alone. It’s totally creepy. Right there he already crosses a safety boundary. But spaths do it in SUCH a clever way. He locks the door, sits close, but then doesn’t make a move. Your body first gets on alert (“What’s going on?! This might be dangerous!”), and then they do nothing anymore. And as a grown woman you don’t want to make a fuss when the spath suddenly acts “respectful” again, as if giving you the time and space to sit further away or go to the door and unlock it. Which of course you won’t do, because it would ascertain that for a moment there you felt threatened, uncomfortable. It’s better not to acknowledge to either him or yourself that he just crossed a boundary. And so the “danger will robinson” settles down… only a residu is left as “excitement”, and you convince yourself you’re attracted.

A Peruvian guide used a similar tactic on me while I was tourleading last year. I had no interest in him at all, though he was not unattractive. When I first saw him he seemed more shy and staying in the background kind of guy (or lurking and watching from the shadows). But halfway our first day of the 4 day trek, while my tourists were out of sight and I was aking conversation with him for social-professional reasons- I’m the tourleader, he’s the guide… I must get along with him for 4 days – he suddenly stepped up REAL close to me and suggested to hug me and huddle together to keep warm together. It totally took me by surprise.

It’s not that I had other guides try to hit on me before, but they will tend to do that almost from the very moment of the meeting, and in front of the rest of the group. It enables both the guide, the group and myself to make it into an innocent flirt game. The group gets to joke that the guide has the hots for me, I can joke by keeping a distance. But this guide’s move had come totally out of the blue. So, for a moment I didn’t know how to respond at all. But he went no further than that one move at that moment. And an hour later I started to wonder whether I was attracted to him, simply because he had been able to bring me out of my balance.

Of course some of the group did notice that something was going on between him and myself at some level. He’d also start to capitalize on me the moment I did try to build in some distance again. I know by a comment made by the pain in the arse tourist that he faulted me for the guide trying to get my attention. So, this guide had undermined my position in a way. When we were back in Cuzco the guide gave me his business card, but did not show up at the meeting place where he and my group would go out in town. The next day I did a background check on his name in fb, and found out he was married and had a child, while he had “lied” to that same annoying tourist during the trek that he didn’t have any children (I was walking within earshot). I was able to save some face, when later that day the group asked me whether I’d been able to set up a new meeting for their last nigth in town. I then smiled and jokingly said, “I’m quite sure his wife wants him for herself alone for the 3 days he’s home before starting a new trek.”

Most laughed at that, but the annoying tourist was floored and insisted that he distinctly recalled the guide telling him he had no children. I must admit I in my own way “gaslighted” that tourist then – I lied that the guide had informed me himself about being married with children during the 4 day trek. So, I made him the tourist doubt his own recollection. It wasn’t my intention to make him doubt his own memory, but I felt nobody needed to know I had done a background check on the guide … I did not want to explain my private life or why I learned to do background checks on people. It was none of their business that I had just recently broken up with a sociopath, and that a part of me distrusted this “quick bond” where the guide dominated my wandering mind (yup in 4 days my mind swam with his image… took me 4 days to get him out of my mind too).

This little 4-day moving in on me experience after my spat relationshit and new awareness about spaths gave me some insights how they fool us into beleiving that our feelings of anxiety created by their inappropriate boundary behaviour is some form of attraction. It has become a RED FLAG sign for me.

G1S

Darwinsmom,

“He locks the door, sits close, but then doesn’t make a move. Your body first gets on alert (“What’s going on?! This might be dangerous!”), and then they do nothing anymore. And as a grown woman you don’t want to make a fuss when the spath suddenly acts “respectful” again, as if giving you the time and space to sit further away or go to the door and unlock it.”

I never thought I was in any danger. I was very confused, though.

I also realized later that by not actually touching me or making a move to kiss me, he could profess innocence. By leaving it up to me to make the advances, he retained control.

He could, as he tried to do with the church, claim that I had been inappropriate, not him. Of couse, he’d have to explain why he locked the door and sat next to me on the couch, which I’m sure he’d deny. He could easily point to the stress of the crisis with my son’s kidnapping as the cause for my misunderstanding his intentions.

He not only told me that I needed to change churches, but he produced a list of six or seven other churches in the area that he thought I should try. He even insisted that one an hour away from our church would be a “really good place” for me to be.

I told him that I had no problem with us attending the same church. It was obviously his problem, not mine, so if anybody needed to go elsewhere, he did, which he did end up doing.

He invited me in to talk with him so much during son’s sessions, having my son wait in the reception area, that my son turned to me one day and exclaimed, “Gee, he wants to talk with you more than he wants to talk with me.”

Meanwhile, I’m asking my therapist if this is right, isn’t my son getting shortchanged.

I wrote the therapist a letter stating that I intended to terminate. I sweet-coated it by saying that I felt my son needed somebody skilled with alcoholic families and since he didn’t have that expertise, I felt it was time for my son to move on to somebody else.

My therapist had a royal fit. She was visibly angry with me. We went head to head. She insisted that since this therapist was such a father figure to my son that leaving would be very harmful to my son. I really fought to get away from this man.

I even went to my psychiatrist, who was prescribing me antibiotics, and knew us both. I told him what was going.

He answered that perhaps he didn’t know this therapist as well as he thought. He, too, unfortunately, said it would be very damaging to my son to leave this therapist because of their relationship. I went back to him because of what my shrink said, not because of my therapist’s position.

So what happened? Two months later the therapist abandons my son anyway, three weeks after he got out of the psychiatric hospital the second time for suicidal ideation.

He had told my son that he needed to go into a facility for emotionally disturbed children. I freaked out. Why? There was nothing wrong with my son. He was reacting to a situation. I had asked the outpatient facility to find out what was going on with this therapist. They refused to discuss anything with me even though I asked three times.

We walked in for a 11 AM session. My son’s psychiatrist said that this therapist would be terminating with my son at his regular 2 PM that day. I flipped out.

I left and called my therapist. She told me not to go to that appointment because she feared what else the therapist might say to my son.

I later found out, demanding the records under HIPAA, that when the outpatient facility went to talk to the therapist at my request, he told them that I stalking him.

Talk about a perfect storm of therapist incompetence.

There is more, but I’ve had my stomachful for now.

I was glad to read that you got some of your self-respect back regarding that guide and that tourist.

Ox Drover

G1S, we posted over each other and I just now saw your post about the therapist. It is TOTALLY unethical for a therapist to have a relationship with a family member of a client or a client.

Yes, he was pushing the boundaries and he was a total CREEP. What a good thing that your warning bells went off and you did NOT have an affair with this man. I think he was a totally unethical person.

Grace,
that’s just awful about the therapist.

If that had happened to me, I would be convinced that my spath was behind it. He could find the evil in anyone and make it BLOOM.

I admire your ability to hold on to your sanity in the middle of all those sick people.

G1S

I hold my therapist far more responsible than my son’s.

My son’s therapist really struggled over this. That was obvious to me and my therapist.

He went back and forth. He did try to maintain a professional distance and he slipped quite a number of times. To his credit, though, he never crossed that final line.

I had repeatedly asked my therapist for help. Rather than seeing the damage that was happening to everybody involved (my son, me, and his therapist,) she pushed for the therapist and me to become a couple. It was her agenda. That’s why she didn’t hear me. She was too busy making plans for things to happen as she thought they should.

My son’s therapist handled things very poorly at times and even downright cowardly, but at least he never totally lost knowing right from wrong. He didn’t throw that out the window, like my therapist did, because something else was more attractive to him.

I think my P sister did a number on his head by taking and putting his client in danger. He saw that I was under full assault by my family and I was getting no help from that quarter. His client, with suicidal ideation, was pulled out of a psychiatric facility and handed over to the people who put him there, with no investigation or protection whatsoever. We also learned that my sister had obtained help from a therapist in her state to advise her on how to “help me,” which was code for how to take my son from me. This therapist knew what I was facing and that I was very alone.

My P sister also showed up at his office in a rage demanding my son’s therapy records. The situation was completely crazy.

The therapist was in the parking lot going to lunch when she pulled in. He said she looked like a very angry version of me. He called his receptionist, instructed her to give my sister nothing, and he told whoever was driving to get out of there.

Before my P sister launched her attack, there was nothing between me and my son’s therapist.

I honestly think that the full assault by my P sister threw a lot of things out of whack.

In the end, he had his Ph.D. and I guess he felt he was smart enough to figure everything out, but he couldn’t and he didn’t.

darwinsmom

G1S,

Awful story! Being confused about someone and then allowing you the space to move would have the same “am I confused out of attraction?” idea imo. Be proud that you kept strong and listened to your gut.

I’m so sorry what that man did to your son: he knew you cared and wished to hurt you by hurting him.

And how strange for your own therapist pushing you to be a couple with him. What the hell!

Actually, G1S, your son’s therapist shows several red flags… for locking the door and sitting close to you is crossing a boundary in a very creepy away. And then he accuses you of doing what he’s actually doing: stalking. And he drops your son so cruelly too. And your therapists enthusiasm about him grew when he started to call her to talk about your son, but ended up talking about you… Sounds to me like he was making your therapist into some cheerleader.

one/joy_step_at_a_time

Folks – Jessica Vega, faked cancer. Check out the May 8, 2012 Anderson Cooper show to see her husband’s interview (and would the diagnosis be for HIM?)

G1S

A friend of mine rightfully pointed out that his wife didn’t divorce him because he was Mr. Wonderful.

My gut eventually felt that he could have been a batterer.

My P sister also got in touch with my son’s father, who gave up all parental rights as part of the original support agreement including stating that he wanted nothing to do with my son and no knowledge of either of us. He wrote a letter for my P sister stating that I was a horrible mother and in his opinion, my P sister should have custody of my son.

The day that my sister showed up in a rage at my son’s therapist’s office, she had this letter with her. That was her proof why the therapist needed to turn over all his records about my son to her.

Because of this letter and whatever contact my sister had with my son’s father, she told my son that she could help my son have a relationship with his P father. More wounding.

My son’s P father had no intentions of doing that. He just wanted to screw me and get out of paying child support. The thing is, if my sister had gotten permanent custody of my son, she would have been all over the P father for support. As it was, he tried to tell me that he had given my sister the health insurance card, which he never did.

Between what my S mother and P sister were doing to us, my son’s P father throwing his weight behind my P sister, dealing with the stigma that “the courts don’t do this sort of thing without just cause,” the stigma of my family attacking me “they wouldn’t do this without just cause,” my son being hospitalized twice for suicidal ideation, him running away once, me trying to hold onto my job and the house (I got laid off during part of this,) my therapist and my son’s therapist doing their things, and the outpatient facility throwing in their monkey wrench, I felt like I was on the emotional equivalent of an Indiana Jones movie.

We also had to deal with things like my son being yanked out of his high school, put into another for two weeks, and then returned to his school. He had to put up with the kids getting on his case about “are you going to stay this time.”

My sister told the court that I had multiple personalities (because my demeanor changed when I came around them) and was a negligent mother. Who ever heard of anyone going into court saying that about a sibling just to be mean? She must have known what she was talking about, right?

When my sister had temporary custody, the school’s and the psych hospital’s doors slammed in my face. They couldn’t talk to me about my son because I was no longer his legal guardian-thanks to the court.

I don’t think my son’s therapist turned my therapist into a cheerleader. It was the other way around. She was trying to lead him into having a relationship with me. In fact, while I always insisted that my son was my first priority and I fought with her to terminate our relationship with my son’s therapist, she told me that she had told my son’s therapist that I wanted him to “co-parent” my son with me.

I never said that. I didn’t even know what that meant. But think of how I looked to my son’s therapist when she said that. She explained that she did that because she thought she was helping. How was that helping? It wasn’t what I wanted and it certainly wasn’t responding to our needs.

It was an absolute nightmare. She was an independent chapter in this saga.

Getting help for me from a therapist turned out to be impossible. I take that back. I found a psychiatrist only who read many of the documents and emails. She was tremendously helpful and validating.

Sometimes all we need is somebody to hear us and believe us. I was very lucky that so much was documented.

20years

G1S,

How awful. Terrible what happened to you and your son with the therapists. It is bad enough to deal with the Ps in our life, but to have to deal with the authorities and “experts” (courts, CPS, therapists), and I do mean “authorities” because they have the authority to step in and control parts of our lives — it is so horrible.

So many of them think they know best (well meaning), or they themselves have meddling tendencies (play God) or, worst of all, they are sociopaths themselves and enjoy playing with their Fisher Price Little People (us), creating real-life dramas, spinning people up. What fun.

I don’t know the answer. I’m taking a break from therapy, myself, because ultimately I felt a loss of control there. It was helpful for awhile, in some ways… but I need space in my head, with no one else there, for awhile. You guys are different. 🙂

20years

OK, I have to follow up here: Yes! there are good therapists who truly help, there are good CPS workers who do a very good job, and there are good lawyers, judges, GALs, etc. who really do help the people caught up in the system. I’m not talking about you! I’m talking about the other ones…

G1S

One of the situations that we faced was that after my son was returned to me, he told his guidance counselor one day that he wasn’t feeling safe, meaning he was having suicidal thoughts again.

The guidance counselor told him to talk with me about that when I got home from work. The school let out at 2:05 PM and I never got home much before 6 PM, which meant the guidance counselor sent a depressed kid home without any support for at least five hours.

Adding insult to injury, on this very same day and AFTER my son had talked with him, the guidance counselor called me at work to say that my son’s classes were all worked out and he was back in school. Not a peep that my son had talked with him and was feeling unsafe. Nothing.

I didn’t find out about my son telling him anything until I got home that night.

Very concerned, I emailed the school principal asking what the policy was when kids report something like this. At the very least, the parents should be alerted or the kid sent to the school nurse.

The next day, the guidance counselor called me at work. He starts out by yelling at me (no exaggeration) asking who I thought I was going over his head to talk with the principal. If I had a problem with him, I was to call him.

I pushed back. I told him that my son’s safety was my first priority and I was going to do everything within my power to ensure that he stays safe, including assuring myself that there was a school policy on how to handle kids who were going through what I was. I told him that I wouldn’t change anything that I did and I would do it again. I also made sure that he knew that I didn’t care if the counselor’s ego took a hit; he should have made sure that the kid was all right. You could hear that he wasn’t expecting that. He thought he could bully me.

I then let the principal know that the guidance counselor had called me at work and yelled at me because I had spoken to the principal about what he did.

I added that if any harm had come to my son, the town had better believed that I would have sued, but I was sure that wasn’t what the principal or the town wanted. The problem was the guidance counselor.

My therapist thought I handled the situation very well. My son’s therapist thought I should have spoken one-on-one with the guidance counselor and sided with him. I was flabbergasted.

That latter thing I realized came partially from him having a small practice and being a therapist. Large organizations don’t go around having private discussions with employees if something happens. They make sure that there is a policy in place and that everybody understands it.

The other part was this was the beginning of the push-pull that I was going to go through with the therapist for the next nine months or so.

silvermoon

Why didn’t you fire the therapists? During all that time, you were paying them. Under what obligation?

My experience with therapists is that they are good for short term mediation, but when one wants a long term commitment its more about their mortgage payment than the patient’s well being.

The school system is, well its amazing. And so insulated that you can’t sue them pretty much for anything.

The best strategy for working with public schools is to get a legal advocate and go straight to the district’s attorney. The Superintendent will hide behind the attorney and your son should be on an IEP which provokes special education law.

If the District people think you are going to raise hell, they will tell the principal to give you whatever you want.

Obviously that counselor got his butt chewed and for good reason. Did you petition to have your child reassigned to another counselor?

You can file a complaint about the process they use to make their decisions in the education system. but its not an easy one to win. The implied threat actually carries more weight. However, if you can get a judgement from the Office of Civil Rights that the process for dealing with your child was discriminatory, then, you are in position to sue individuals in the school.

In order to go straght to OCR, you need a 504 plan and that requires a medical diagnosis.

You can have an IEP and a 504 at the same time. Don’t let them tell you not.

And you should have both because the 504 has the teeth to keep them in line.

But don’t go to the fight alone. Get a good advocate. One who knows the law. You will be amazed at how fast things turn around at school!

Since there are zero cases of parents winning educational malpractice, you pretty much have to work with what’s there or go somewhere else.

Check for State Chartered Schools. They operate outside the District personnel.

I hear your story. A lot of it sounds familiar.

Remember that is you push back without leverage from a legal position, they will “handle you” as a rhinocerous mom and go on doing what they do.

Get the leverage your child needs you to have. Its in special education and ADAA law.

G1S

I did eventually fire both therapists.

However, when the you-know-what was hitting the fan, that wasn’t an option. I stuck with the people who had the front row seats and knew exactly what was going on. I didn’t have the emotional energy to take on anything more than what was absolutely necessary.

Don’t forget that the real issue and catalyst for all these other things was my P sister’s and S mother’s highly coorindated attack against me to gain custody of my son. All this other stuff were side issues.

When my son was hospitalized the second time within 9 months for suicidal ideation, I got a lot of flak over why the therapists, his in particular, didn’t see this coming.

My therapist did a huffy, “What? What? I think we’ve been doing a very good job.” My son’s therapist response was to abandon my son.

And because we weren’t over things that my P sister started, it would have meant going to somebody new to explain the whole thing over again. I just couldn’t do that. I had reached my breaking point.

The client isn’t given the benefit of the doubt. Imagine how I would be regarded if I walked into a new therapist with that tale about the therapists and the outpatient facility? Who would believe me? I’d sound like a lunatic. What was the common factor? Me. Therefore, I had to be the cause, right?

I’ve tried with multiple therapists since. They don’t want to talk with me.

My son has graduated from high school and is doing very well now. He just finished his first year of college with flying colors.

silvermoon

Good for him.

Yeah, its tough.

Everyone wants to point a finger at whoever is having the loudest complaint. It entitles them to keep doing what they are already doing without interruption.

Those therapists sound like a bunch of idiots.

Why you would ever want to talk to another one?

Frankly, most of them should not be in business.

Don’t get me started on coaches who set up to give advice without the benefit of any education or training.

Its all a racket.
And the disordered play the system to the hilt.

Congrats on your son.

callmeathena
darwinsmom

g1s,

When did your therapist start to mingle? Before your son’s therapist started to move onto you? Or after?

While you say that he never erred to the wrong side of things… he did imo the moment he locked that door and started to move into your body atmosphere at a moment you were VERY vulnerable. That he didn’t force himself on you is typically spathy imo… he wanted you to make the move so you could only blame yourself afterwards. That nothing physical happened is not imo thanks to him knowing right from wrong, but because you didn’t actually chewed on the bait he put out there for you (and he didn’t like that). Yes, your personal therapist made things worse for you with her meddlesome lies and gave him an excuse to point the finger at you. I think you’re giving him too much credit, and too little to yourself in that sick situation. 🙂

20years

Athena,

That is a scary story. I wonder how often that stuff goes on (spaths deliberately poisoning family members).

G1S

Darwinsmom,

You’re probably right that I am giving him too much credit. I have such mixed feelings about him still.

I will admit that I could not have been any more vulnerable than I was at that time.

Good question about my therapist. I’m not really sure when they first spoke.

The first time that they spoke, he called her on a Tuesday of a week that he was out of the office on vacation. She and I thought that was very weird.

I had given permission to speak to each other because my objective was for them to coordinate efforts to ensure that my son didn’t become suicidal again.

That could have been while my son was still hospitalized because he was in the hospital for a month and my sister didn’t attack until his last week there.

My therapist told me around then that she had been thinking for a while that we were meant to co-parent my son together, but hadn’t said anything to me because she wanted to see how things were going to develop.

As I mentioned earlier, she told me that her spirit guides had helped her reach that conclusion. I almost walked out when I heard that. That was a huge red flag, but I had so many other things that I was trying to cope with then.

I think she told me this after he locked the door and sat next to me because at that point, my sister had my son, but I could be wrong.

Had they spoken before that happened?

We’re talking a few weeks at most. I don’t remember.

I do know that she told me that she thought psychologists make too much of a big deal about therapists and parents not having relationships. (My son’s therapist was a psychologist.)

She said that therapists aren’t that strict about those things. In other words, she didn’t see it as a boundary issue or causing any problems.

Now that we’re talking about it, that’s a really odd position given her expertise is sexual abuse and she knew that is what I came to her about.

Wow. This just went up another notch in yuckiness.

callmeathena

20 years, yeah, that is a really nasty story. My stomach has been upset about it all day. I am really nauseated between that story, and, I think, my own pain. It is strange how emotional pain translates into physical pain. I can’t get over it. I wish I knew how to get rid of it. I feel immobilized.

Athena

callmeathena

GIS,

I am sorry for what happened to you. Boundary violations everywhere. Totally inappropriate.

I have been renting and watching movies about spaths. I am probably up to 20 maybe 30 now, with 10 more movies I found today about spaths and I added them to my queue. I never saw it before my spath, and now, I see them everywhere. I don’t mean to be dramatic, but it’s true.

Somebody posted something on here earlier today that made me think.

I used to think that most people were good – basically, solidly good. Yes, they might have a little bit of badness in them, but that the “bad” only poked out occasionally, rarely, under strange circumstances.

It never dawned on me to that there were people who were FUNDAMENTALLY bad out there.

I just want to throw up that I was so blind, and I didn’t see it, and I got slimed. I am trying to run around and forget and be good and enjoy life but wow, the slime is suffocating and hurts.

Athena

G1S

Athena,

I was thinking, after posting the above, that during that time I knew absolutely nothing about psychopaths or sociopaths.

The worst I thought somebody might be was an alcoholic. This wasn’t alcoholism.

I had absolutely no clue what kind of monsters I was up against. They were spinning stories to everybody and anybody who would listen. They turned a lot of my family members against me. They were trying to get their hands on my house. They were telling people that I was going to end up a street person and that I was crazy. I was so alone.

My child, the one I battled cancer for during my pregnancy, was at risk of being killed. I was at my wits’ end.

Furthermore, I was constantly being asked, “These people are your family; can’t you learn to get along with them? Maybe you’re expecting too much from them?”

I was very lucky that I had all my Al-Anon tools and years of Al-Anon training (detachment, one day at a time, just for today, the Serenity Prayer) because they got me through it all. Al-Anon is how I survived.

HOWEVER, we suffered needlessly because everything was being reduced to, “What did you do to deserve this? Families don’t this to each other. The courts don’t award custody without good cause.”

I wasted so much energy. My son and I both suffered horribly.

I trusted the therapists because therapists are supposed to be people that clients can trust.

What we went through simply underscores the crying need to get this information out to the general public so people can take effective defenses and actions.

I just posted that I had a story that could pertain to the work survey. As I was writing it, it crossed my mind that people are going to think that I know a lot of Ps. Why is that so odd? There are so many of them out there.

Athena, you’re right. They’re everywhere.

yep.
I also think that certain people attract them more than others. They watch for people who react emotionally and easily. That’s how they feed.

They watch for people who care a lot, who respond, who are sensitive. That’s how they feed.

They watch for anyone who is good. Yes, they can see it on your face. When you have a trusting nature, they know that you are fundamentally a good person, that’s why you trust –because you assume others are like you. It gives you confidence in humanity and in yourself. They hate that. They really envy that.

There are other things they look for too, like the limp. They look for people who are unbalanced. Anyone who relies more on emotion than intellect, or vice versa, attracts their attention. If you tend to take more responsibility than is within your power, they love that too, so they can leave you holding the bag.

All we can do is be aware of them and their defective “values”. Then we can use them as an example of how not to be.

darwinsmom

g1s,

your personal therapist was a total calculated whack quack. WTH? She was a sexual abuse specialist and yet she thought there were no issues about therapists dating their patients or clients (even if your son was the patient, as his parent you were a client). It’s a professional relationship where one has ‘power’ and the other does not (needs help, so under position). Sexual abuse is not about sex, but power! And her spirit guides told her? She was also a fortune teller?! WTH was HER degree in?

And per Sky’s point about how her spath would set up such therapists for his victims, I’m now bound to ask… how did you come to choose both of these therapists? By recomendation? And if so, who recommended them?

Darwinsmom,
AFAIK, my exspath never set up any therapists, but he intervened with cops, lawyers and pharmacists to get them to attack his victims.

It blows me away that he could convince people to do these things.

He wouldn’t choose them, he simply sought them out and convinced them of his victim’s guilt and deserving of being attacked. So for example, if he wanted to have Grace have problems with her therapist, he would show evidence that Grace had been lying or Grace has a hidden agenda.

I couldn’t believe how many men started to flirt openly with me when I joined the water association. I’m convinced he had spread the word that I was a porn star (I think he took a sex video of me when I was 25). But whatever the case, near the end of our relationshit, people started to act very very strangely.

Who knows what all he did! He could be very convincing because nobody could imagine that a sane person would lie like he does.

G1S

Darwinsmom,

My therapist had two Master’s degrees. At least that is what she told me at the time.

I sent a link about her to somebody the other day. I noted in that link, she was listed as having only one Master’s degree. Odd. If I had two Master’s degrees directly related to my field, I’d make sure that was included in my public online resume.

She told me that she started out to become a psychologist, but “something happened” (voice trails off…) I don’t think that “something” was a good thing.

I am so nice that I said, “Awww. I understand.” What did I understand? Was I about to start pressing the issue?

That’s why I hold her more responsible for what happened than I do my son’s therapist.

Yes, he messed up on a lot of levels and I wouldn’t want his karma (maybe it can speak to my therapist’s spirit guides LOL,) but she had a secret agenda and lied to both of us.

God only knows what she told my son’s therapist and what she failed to do to help me/us.

slimone

G1S,

I am nearly speechless. The sheer volume of lies, manipulations, and BAD people you had to simultaneously juggle is mind numbing.

I am SO sorry to hear it. I am so sorry you had to live it, and are now, sort of, reliving it.

I had such a wonderful and loving therapist, who had impeccable boundaries, that is really saddens me to hear these awful stories. I am not sure I would be here, were it not for my lovely therapist.

But just like all other professions, they harbor evil doers. I know spathy nurses, doctors, a fund-raiser for needy families, and woman who runs a women’s shelter….geez. And they are all, to a person, snakes.

G1S, I send you my mightiest wishes for love, peace, and contentment.

Slim

darwinsmom

Sky,

I know you didn’t mean it as something that actually happened, but your response to G1s’s story was about getting the feeling it seemed like a set-up where someone had a hand in. And this is the growing feeling I’m starting to get about g1s’ therapists.

G1s

Your personal therapist definitely had a plan, but was it all by herself, or did it coincide a 3rd’s goals? The other therapist, if he had been innocent and actually did have feelings could and would have gone about it another way, not the creepy power lock the door way.

There was seed planting (well pushing) from your own therapist; there was seed planting of feelings from your son’s therapist. Both my ex-spath as that Peruvian guide were teases… They’d plant the seed of attraction, but hang around as available, without making the actual first move to kiss. I never kissed the Peruvian guide. But with the ex-spath I was eventually the one who pulled him by the shirt to me to kiss him. He chased me, but I was the one who had to voluntarily initiate the first kiss.

Allegorically it reminds me of the vampire myth… the vampire may want you as his or her victim, but cannot enter your house except by yoru own voluntarily invitation. That way they can then blame you for giving them access to your home. It’s the same thing with spaths imo who’re angling for a sexual victim.

So, she wasn’t a psychologist. Was she a psychiatrist (medical training)? Or what is her master about?

BTW it’s not that I have anything against spirit-guides. I don’t even look down on ‘fortune telling’… Yes, I’m an atheist, I’m science minded, but I read tarot cards, and have done so for people who requested it once in a while. And I’ve experienced certain things that would be explained by others as spirit-guides… I just have another atheist explanation for it, and yet the info that I became conscious of through it I regard as valuable and useful. But there’s just no way I’d ever condone psychological guidance therapy be mixed with the other. As for fortune-telling goes… it’s more like holding up a mirror for the questioner to make sense of, rather than “this is what is what you must do”. I’ve never known an honestly meaning fortune teller who’d tell the one with the question what to do exactly. It’s more like: these seem to be issues or opportunities, these are the possibilities, these are the blocks or the themes you need to work about…

So, imo she’s a wacko therapist AND a wacko fortune teller.

silvermoon

GIS,

if you had it all to do again, how would you do it differently?

G1S

Silvermoon, if I had to do it again knowing only what I knew back then, I don’t think I would have done anything differently.

I wasted many years in therapy because nobody ever identified my mother as a S or my sister as a P.

Once in a while, I heard that my mother was very cold and a narcissist, but those were just passing comments.

If the therapists had known about Ps as we know about Ps now, things would have gone very differently. I would have gone no contact years ago.

That wasn’t an objective with the therapists. Their objective was to unite the family. I always felt under scrutiny. They were always searching, I felt, to discover what was wrong on my part that was creating dischord in the family.

Eventually, they would agree that I was the family scapegoat and I should probably stay away, but NOBODY ever said that these people were incapable of feelings and that no matter what I said or did, they were never going to recognize me as a person with value.

What I needed was that understanding and the recommendations about no contact etc. I would have abided by those gladly.

Instead, I was burdened with shame and failure because it “takes two to tangle” and look, this family thing wasn’t working out.

Ox Drover

G1S QUOTE: “As I mentioned earlier, she told me that her spirit guides had helped her reach that conclusion. I almost walked out when I heard that. That was a huge red flag, but I had so many other things that I was trying to cope with then.:

WTF???? Her “spirit guides”??????? Wonder what college or university her “spirit guides” graduated from? I never heard of a therapist co-parenting with a parent? That is OUTRAGEOUS!

I am so glad that you and your son survived your sister, egg donor and several incompetent therapists all at one time. Whew! Talk about crazy! and Crazy making?

G1S

I was wrong. I just rechecked the information.

My therapist does have two Master’s degrees – one in clinical psychology and one in social work.

Darwinsmom, I have been psychic all my life. I have had very intense spiritual experiences. What I know from them is that I have no control over the information whatsoever. I have no way of knowing what is accurate and what is not.

I own and can read tarot cards. I am also an astrologer.

Because of those studies, I know how unreliable these things are. I would never live my life by them.

They’re very interesting at times, I love the imagery and metaphores, they give me something to think about, they’re often entertaining, but in the end, I would never make an important decision by using them.

If I can’t depend on them for me, I certainly would never use them to influence somebody else’s life. They need to decide for themselves what they want to accept.

I would never attempt to guide somebody’s life because “my spirit guides” told me something. I think wishful thinking and imagination color this stuff much too much.

They are just too unreliable.

The best that I would say about them if they offer another perspective.

I did tell my therapist that I had strong misgivings about this information that she claimed that she had. I told her that she was being too much of a Libra (over romantic.) I told her that I didn’t think she was being objective or realistic.

She came back with Jung. I forget which archetype that she used. It might have been something about a knight on a white horse.

For me, though, this was my life. I wanted reality, today, the here and now.

Ironic, isn’t it? The therapists insist that you tell them how you feel and when you do, they reject or dismiss that information.

Must be great to have all the answers. Then they get to rationalize away the harm that they did by finding a way to blame the client. Skylar was right.

G1S

Oxy,

You know what? I have never known any mental health facility or provider to give a new client a list of what is inappropriate behavior on their part.

I’ve seen HIPAA statements out the whazoo, but not one word about, “If a therapist ever says this, it’s wrong or if a therapist does that, it’s inappropriate.”

I think what I learned from these therapists is a good understanding why kids are fooled and misled by parents, coaches, teachers, scout leaders, clergy, or other adults.

Who is educating kids or the general public that this behavior was wrong?

Nobody educated me. I didn’t know. I also wouldn’t have known where to look.

Don’t forget that the Internet is a very recent development.

How many town libraries were filled with warning information about therapists? Aren’t we always told that these people care? That they are there to help? Feel free to open up to them. They will guide you.

If libraries had anything, who would know what to ask for or where to look?

The only warning that I got from a therapist was to be very careful because she estimated that at least 50% of therapists have never dealt with their personal issues. They go into therapy thinking that they can vicariously fix themselves by listening to their clients.

Her advice was very valuable. I heard it, encountered therapists like that, and got away as soon as I realized what was going on.

But what when somebody “cares” and tells you that they don’t think this is what’s happening and you might want to consider X, how many clients are going to think that they’re getting bad information?

I found out that she had had clients who fired her for not hearing them AFTER I told her that I was leaving for that reason. She never revealed that up front. Should she have? I don’t know.

Oh, one more thing. I kept asking what co-parenting meant. I had never heard the term before. I got evasive answers. She never once told me that it was about two real, divorced parents and their child. No wonder my son’s therapist had weird ideas.

I went into a rage when I found out-from my friends who were in therapy and did know exactly what the term signified.

I was livid because what I had spent weeks in discussing with her was the distance that I wanted to put between me and this man. I even refused to go with my son to his sessions. He could get there on his own. I wanted to remove me as a thorn in the therapist’s side so he could concentrate his efforts on my son. I told my therapist that nearly every week for months. I told him that.

What does my therapist do? She tell him that I want him to co-parent with me. Who do you think he’s going to assume is lying? His professional peer?

I left a furious message on my son’s therapist phone saying that I had never asked for that. He is my child. I get to choose who will be his other parent. Not my therapist. Not my son’s therapist. Nobody. I will deem who is good enough for my chind. Not anybody else. I never requested that, and I certainly would not have chosen him.

Then I called back fifteen minutes later after I cooled down and apologized for my delivery.

He said he got my messages, both of them.

I was embarrassed that I was so angry. Nobody addressed how inappropriate and unprofessional my therapist had been. I didn’t realize that was unprofessional.

I was reacting to somebody putting words in my mouth that weren’t true, because that’s what my S mother and P sister would do all the time. I focused on righting the truth. I let my therapist know that I was angry, but I didn’t push it. I was too conditioned by the Ps.

In other words, this one slipped through the cracks made by the Ps.

Ox Drover

There should be “warnings” given to people going into therapy about what is inappropriate.

There are also therapists out there who are using “bunkum” for “therapy” and because they ahve a PhD or whatever they get by with it. I am sorry but I don’t think Freud and Jung are all that valid today. At the time they were studying, there were not the kinds of information that is known now about psychology, medicine, brain activity, chemical reactions etc in the brain as today. Their information may have been valid for their TIME but I dont’ think it is all that valid today. just MHO.

Using Freudian and Jungian therapy today is I am sorry I think it is like using the Maps that were valid in 1600 for navigation today. There are GPSs and other much more valid kinds of navigation tools today…and the same in therapy and medicine. Freud and Jung are way gone outdated.

Ox Drover

As for the therapist’s “spirit guides” I think if you wanted to go to a fortune teller for your son’s therapy that she should have hung up a shingle as a “fortune teller” not a licensed therapist.

I know people who go to “Christian therapists” and other therapists who hold one spiritual belief or another, but for “mainstream” therapists who are “licensed therapists” I think they need to keep their personal prejudices out of the therapy aspect.

It would be totally unprofessional for me to preach Jesus to a client or patient.

G1S

If I had wanted spirit guides, I would have read my own Tarot cards or looked at my chart.

There is no need for me to pay good money for that. I can do it myself.

I had no idea that she did this, until she made that announcement.

silvermoon

Who knows what that woman was really trying to pull over on you? It does sound creepy. Really creepy.

I’d have taken it as an advance of no small proportion.

Co Parent my *.*!

You’re more patient than I am. I think I would have fired her on the spot and refused to pay the bill.

Too. too weird.

But, thankfully in the rear view mirror!

Tarot is fascinating. I’ve dabbled with it for years. And it is fascinating. But, like you said, who knows about it?

Spirit Guides are very interesting but the only people I know who can see them are people who are paid to. Go figure.

Trust your gut and keep going. Sounds like you’ve had a long road!

darwinsmom

g1s,

exactly: never ever use those tools to ake decisions on. That’s what the “fortune tellers” I know off would always say when somebody asked a question regarding “what should I do?” They’d outright refuse to do a reading on such a question.

I completely agree with Oxy: she should have completely separated the two. And if she wanted to be fortune teller, she should have put a plaque on a her door about it.

g1s,

You are incredibly strong! Look at what kind of attacks you were being put through at the time – you son kidnapped, your sister and mother, you son’s suicide ideation, the courts believing your sister, his therapist’s inapropriate and creepy behaviour and then this nutter therapist of yours who meddled and was actually a fortune teller rather than a therapist, and then one even any other fortune teller I know would seriously frown upon.

It’s as if you fell into some viper’s nest!

Ox Drover

G1S I agree with Darwin’smom, you fell into a viper’s nest! You did great considering the circumstances you were under at the time. Having so MANY psychopaths all trying to take a bite out of your arse at once and then having two therapists both inappropriate, I hardly see how you didn’t fall completely apart yourself, so pat yourself on the back you did good with the tools you had, you got out alive, your son is finishing up his first year of college with flying colors and so be thankful for the outcome. Don’t worry about the wicked witch and her co-hort, they may keep trying but I bet your son will tell them to take a hike! (((hugs)))

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