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By October 20, 2016 6 Comments Read More →

Marital Therapy With A Sociopath–Don’t Waste Your Time

Husband Liar Sociopath

Every week, a chapter of my book, “Husband, Liar, Sociopath: How He Lied, Why I Fell For It & The Painful Lessons Learned” (available via Amazon.com, just click on the title or book cover) will be published here on Lovefraud. To read prior chapters, please see the links at the bottom of the post.

 

Chapter 28: All The World’s A Stage—To A Sociopath

I researched marital therapists, searching for a male counselor (hoping to make Paul more comfortable) with an office near Paul’s work so appointments would be minimally disruptive to his stressful, all-consuming job. And so the charade began.

Marital talk therapy with a sociopath is like an art appreciation lecture for the blind. Those who have unknowingly taken this path with a sociopathic partner are doomed to their own personal version of Gaslight, an eerie sense of unreality, a gnawing sense that something is “off” that you can’t quite articulate, all topped with a healthy dose of self-doubt. Talk therapy is a stage for a sociopath, and Paul’s performance was brilliant. Paul knew me inside and out. To him, it would be a fun game and easy to win. He had no intention of playing by the rules. He did not want to make our relationship better; he wanted to win and to make me more pliable. I was already emotionally and physically drained, so his victory was all but assured. The only question was how long he would find the game entertaining.

My goal in therapy was to heal a strained marriage in which I felt there was no “we,” just Paul, with me functioning as an apparently incompetent, underappreciated stagehand to a performance in which he was both director and star. To do this, I knew I would have to be willing to see my role in the dysfunctional marriage and be willing to change. I was so miserable and felt I had so much to lose by the marriage ending that I was highly motivated to understand the current situation, my role in it, and what needed to change.

What I did not understand was that no matter my failings, no matter how sincere I was about preserving my marriage, being involved with a sociopath meant self-reflection and self-improvement had to wait (unless they were needed to gain the personal strength to leave the relationship). Understanding that you are married to a sociopath and getting out of that marriage safely should be steps one and two. But I did not know about sociopaths then, and I certainly did not know I was married to one.

Few people, even trained therapists, think to question whether a difficult relationship and a person’s eroding sense of self may be a result of being intimately involved with a sociopath. But this is the first question we should ask. Think about it. Sociopaths must be disproportionately involved in difficult relationships and divorces. In fact, a characteristic of many, but not all, sociopaths is an inability to sustain long-term relationships. Hence, if sociopaths comprise up to four percent of the population, they probably represent a much higher proportion of failed marriages and doomed relationships. Let’s guess conservatively that it is ten percent. If you are in a troubled marriage in which you feel you are turning to dust and there is a one out of ten chance that the root cause is that you are married to sociopath, shouldn’t you rule this out before venturing further into marital therapy and self-reflection? Unfortunately, most people do not even consider such an option.

In emotional pain and with diminished self-confidence, I entered therapy motivated to improve our marriage. What about Paul? He entered therapy unburdened by emotion, empathy, or conscience. He was motivated to do what all sociopaths are motivated to do—prevail and win. His agenda, therefore, was to use the therapeutic setting to increase his control over me so that I would stay on as the needed stagehand for his show. He could have employed any number of strategies. He chose one that was maximally dismissive of me and probably highly entertaining to him—gaslighting.

 

Start from the beginning:

Chapter 1

Go to previous chapter:

Chapter 27B

Notes

Identifying names, places, events, characteristics, etc. that I discuss here and in my book have been altered to protect the identity of everyone involved.



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6 Comments on "Marital Therapy With A Sociopath–Don’t Waste Your Time"

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I can’t wait for you to write more.

Imagine therapy with a SP. They already ‘know’ that there is nothing wrong with them. Why would or should they change? Instead, we just keep trying to ‘be better’…lol.

I am being entirely facetious.

Therapy with a SP…what a joke.

“I can be better”, the SP who stole a decade of my life used to say. Uh huh.

Your comment: ” The only question was how long he would find the game entertaining.” is so true, and something I feel most therapists don’t understand. At least that was my experience. My therapist just didn’t get how callous and unfeeling he was — and I can’t imagine that he ever cared about anyone, ever.

Therapy with a psychopath could only be another opportunity for them to charm someone and play a new game.

Where my therapist was helpful, was in identifying how best to protect myself as I was exiting an abusive relationship.

mine made US go to couples therapy; his reason? I was spending too much of OUR money; I gathered from his attitude going in, that he meant to FIX me, as you take a pickup to the shop for major repairs..so when we landed in her office, he gives her a lengthly speech of MY failings, shortcomings, and of course the moneys spent issue..she let him ‘run out of gas’..and said..”I hear a LOT of I, ME and MINE” in your words..of course THAT went clear over his head..it took a session or 2 before I even had the courage to speak up for myself..when I did, he folded his arms across his chest and said NOTHING, except to argue that I was NOT telling the truth. Whenever I brought up ANYTHING that was bothering ME about HIM, was ignored or strongly denied. The worst of it, was she set up for us to have a ‘date night’ once a week. We went to counseling on Wednesdays, our date night was usually Thursday. The date nights turned in HIS diatribes about ANYTHING I had brought up on counseling on Wednesday..I finally put an end to the ‘date nights’, HE chose to end the counseling, (which HE insisted wasn’t doing US any good)..counseling? with a controlling, psychopath?? Its a WASTE of time and money, and gives HIM more ammunition against YOU.

Let’s make things clear on why your ex hates you so we can evolve past the disdain that’s presented towards you. You, were supposed to keep quiet after the divorce, take what you get and do what he says. Your ex doesn’t want to see you happy, well adjusted and moving forward with your life. He will hate you solely based on the fact that he can’t control you. A Sociopath Narcissist will dislike paying alimony and child support because it’s not fun and beneficial to them. What he will never understand is that he is supporting his legacy, you are helping his child to flourish, grow and become an active member in society.

They don’t incorporate security into relationships Narcissists tend to keep you on your toes. The last thing he wants is for you to feel safe and secure. It gives hom pleasure to be above you in every way, and when you feel insecure it makes him secure in turn.

They don’t do anything that doesn’t benefit them They didn’t don’t do anything for you out of the kindness of their heart”when they do something for you, they are probably going to ask you for a world of favors afterwards. Narcissists don’t do anything without a purpose to benefit them. Giving a narcissist what they want is the last thing you want to do.

They don’t take orders from others
Don’t try to order a narcissist around. They are egotistical people, and trying to take control is a big hit to their self-esteem. It wouldn’t be surprising to later find yourself in a plot for vengeance later on, just for trying to take control of a narcissist.

They don’t listen
They don’t listen, they just wait for you to shut up so they can say what’s on their mind. They really don’t care about what you have to say, all they’re concerned about is your willingness to listen to them rant on and on.

It’s his same intense insecurity and all-consuming need to control you that also drives him to want to destroy you. The longer you allow him to ‘take,’ the more intense it gets. At first, the take is emotional, then it’s followed by his need to destroy financially. His whole motivation is to rid you of all the things he knows you worked so hard for ”“ your success, your security, your happiness — even your family relationships, and especially the love you share with your children — something they will never gain on their own. I truly believe because they are incapable of achieving things on their own and/or through their own hard work and goodwill. That’s why Sociopaths find it so satisfying to strip you of everything you have, right down to your own dignity. This works for awhile as they are sicker than we are smart. But, in the long run, you maintain your smarts, recover your emotions, and are able to see the big nothing that was reality. In that sense, you do outsmart their illness. You see what they hoped you never would. Now look whose entire purpose is destroyed. Thus the harassment and deep seeded rage of vengeance. You’ve figured them out and have now destroyed their core essence, and in a true Sociopath form, they come back at you to hurt you even harder again – to control you again through more destructive means. The more you fight it, the more it fuels and the more intense it gets. There is no breaking it off with kindness, dignity and certainly not by common sense. They are out to destroy you. Period.

Cindy Silogram – Amen!

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