As a victim of love fraud, I have two reactions to Valentine’s Day. First, I hate the thought of all those sociopaths out there male and female, who are using this day to lock in their next victims. Early in relationships, sociopaths present themselves as great partners. They certainly don’t pass up the chance to pour on the charm on a day like Valentine’s Day. Furthermore, since they can be very focused on sex, Valentine’s Day is an opportunity for them to score. My vision of Valentine sociopaths includes those who are simultaneously wooing more than one victim. Perhaps we should consider whether Valentine’s Day should also be named “Love Fraud Awareness Day.”
My second reaction to Valentine’s Day is that I am reminded of all those who have loved sociopaths only to be harmed in every sphere of their lives. Cupid’s Arrow can be deadly if the result is involvement with a sociopath.
These two reactions bring me to an announcement. That is that Sandra L. Brown, M.A. and I have completed our book Women Who Love Psychopaths. I apologize for the fact that we do not yet have a book for men who have been involved with psychopathic women, but we had to start somewhere.
The book summarizes the results of a survey we conducted on nearly 100 women who have been involved with sociopaths/psychopaths/pathological narcissists. As part of this survey, women completed check lists of symptoms of sociopathy/psychopathy on their partners and we compared the results of these checklists to their narrative stories.
The most important message I have for you is that if you think your man is a sociopath you are very likely to be correct. You do not have to wait for a formal diagnosis before deciding to get out of the relationship and avoid further harm. There was very good agreement between check off list symptoms and the actual behaviors reported by the women in their narrative stories.
Also in honor of Valentine’s Day I will say that if you are an outgoing extraverted woman who greatly values her relationships, you are a target for sociopathic men. That is not to say others are not targeted, but ALL of the women who answered our survey fit this profile. We know that because we had them complete a temperament inventory. Common temperaments are also why we find such camaraderie here on this web site. In addition to being fellow victims, we are likely temperamentally similar.
On a personal level, Valentine’s Day is as bitter sweet as my favorite chocolate. I am in my mid forties, have three children, and have yet to experience a real partnership with a man. The reality is sinking in that perhaps this is not to be for me. My first priority has to be my role as mother and provider. The last time I tried to take a short cut to find a partner, I ended up with a sociopath. I simply do not have the time right now to fully devote toward finding and vetting a worthy partner. The importance of the vetting cannot be overstated!
Where does this leave me and perhaps you? Well, thankfully, a Valentine is not the be all and end all for a fulfilled life. The important need we all have is for connectedness and relatedness. Love relationships are but one venue to meet this need. Although I would like to end this post by saying that we will all one day find our Valentines, to do so would not be of service. It is better for me to say that we all have the potential for fulfillment and well-being with or without a Valentine. Today, I have well-being and fulfillment even though I do not have a Valentine.
To find out more about Women Who Love Psychopaths visit www.saferelationships.com.
thanks everyone. not quiet broken yur words touch and resonate me i feel the exact way you wrote. and i have some relief to k now you go thru that too.i do wonder if hes going tomake it work this time with that other person. but my mum said something today she said he goes after them like a bull at a gate,but it never works out for him . and i thought your right mum maybe she does understand a little bit. anyway i had this thought, his under achieving will stop him from getting th sort of person he wants to be with anyway lets face it most older woman want a bit of security, its easy to see he doesnt have that . god bless . you all and thanks.
Jules, I just wanted to chime in too… The first time I heard the xs was engaged (
Sorry, it cut me off?!?!? I’ll try again! 🙂
Jules, I just wanted to chime in too… The first time I heard the xs was engaged (
Thanks alohatraveler! I had only one candle on my cake. It was my first b-day of my new life.
When I found out that my ex did exactly what I thought he was going to do with the divorce papers, I felt extremely upset and still even hurt by it. (Not just his timing it that way. I still feel like the divorce isn’t real and when I saw the papers it hit me hard – only one more time to go – when I receive the the final papers signed by the judge) But this time instead of telling myself I shouldn’t let it bother me or I should be strong and then have it eat away at me, I did what ML said she did. I let myself feel it. I acknowledged I had a legitimate reason to feel this way. I cried and I let it go. I had a good time with my family. I’m a little raw today. I go from a positive outlook to wanting to cry to having some anxiety about everything I need to do. I’m going to work hard at not thinking about him and what he’s going to do next. Or if the gf will ever find out he’s a liar and take her money away from him. Or… Or…. I’m going to concentrate on getting back the parts of me he sucked dry and discovering who I am today. I’m going to build a new life for my son and me. I know it’s going to take some time to retrain my thoughts because even now he’s creeping in and I start trying to understand why and what happened, but I think the answer’s simple. He’s a narcissistic sociopath and I’m a co-dependent adult child of a alcoholic.
sweet recipe for Valentine’s day coctail: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ebu0OBa1pus
Jules and Findingmyselfagain,
He’s not going to make it work with another. They never do, they never will. If it lasts longer it just means the woman has a higher tolerance for the intolerable. Or perhaps less self esteem or non existent boundaries… or more money to lose or whatever. But it’s not going to work.
One candle? Your first birthday? I LOVE IT!!!
He signed the divorce papers on your birthday? Ahhh, yes… the mental cruelty that only a Sociopath would think of. I can think of one that I will not say here but it just about knocked me over. It was something very very mean and then he did a little extra thing to make something incredibly cruel just that much more. I had never seen anything like it. But remember, it’s not about you. It’s about them. Don’t take it in.
Of course there is value in crying and saying, “OUCH!!! THAT HURT ME SO BAD!!!” but I think the next step is to get to noticing that they are just doing their Sociopath thing. It’s not about you. We have to fortify ourselves and through this bad thing, we will get more grounded and know ourselves so that when some crazy says “you’re this” and “you’re that” we will be able to check in with ourselves and see the truth. Sticks and stones…
I cry for what I lost… trusting easily and being innocent to certain things… but I don’t cry for what he said anymore or what he called me. He called me EVERYTHING. I used to be someone that would let in every bit of crap that anyone would say to me. Now, I am learning that I don’t have to do that. It’s wonderful! I am all for being honest with myself and seeing my flaws but a former boyfriend, one I will call The Good Man, used to say, “Consider the source.”
hi guys, i am new here, but am your sister in suffering, and have been lurking for a while. i tried to post this on Valentine’s Day, but it took a while longer for me to get my password. I was here on Valentine’s Day though, and wrote this post. Maybe it will be good to remember for next year.
i celebrated tonight with dinner for one, with canned green beans and a small steak on the grill. i gave half to my dog. my little boy is with his dad for dinner. i met my S about a year after i found my son’s dad was cheating on me, my son was about six-months-old.
i was prime picking for the S. my sociopath is very wealthy. he uses the “promise” of a good life to manipulate me, a single, struggling mom.
for some reason, today i feel like i am missing out on some grand day of wine, romance and togetherness. so much for valentines day hype and a mind twisted by a sociopath’s manipulations.
but you know what? in REAL life – on our last valentine’s day, he wrecked it as usual. he promised a romantic night with dinner in one of the hotels he owns, but i remember sitting in the car crying after some awful thing he said, as he sat inside a Burger King in front of me and chowed down a Whopper.
so today, my sisters, the canned green beans are simply delicious!
this morning, anticipating the pull back to him, i sent myself an email. in the subject i put “HAPPY VALENTINE’S DAY” and wrote a little note to ME, someone who i am developing a new relationship with. i think i will like ME very much and am looking forward to a bright future together! i am so lucky to have found ME! Here is what I wrote, and just seeing the message to ME in the subject line today has cheered me up.
Subject: HAPPY VALENTINE’S DAY!
hi ME –
happy valentine’s day to you. congratulations on standing up for yourself. congratulations on all you did for the sociopath – to give him the benefit of your empathy, your love, and your work to understand him. it is too bad he is unworthy of you and all you have to offer.
be glad today – on this day we celebrate love – the ability to give and receive it, to cherish it and value it, to understand and marvel in it – that you have experienced love.
you have had it take your breath away, and you have also had it support you, take care of you, and have used it to care for others. celebrate love today, because you truly know it.
congratulations to you. your love has helped your son grow into a tremedous person, capable of giving and receiving love. he has a conscience, a gut, which you have given him.
his goodness is a living testament to all that is wrong with your sociopath. you have brought out in your son all the qualities the sociopath lacks. the light of his goodness just makes the sociopath’s badness so much darker.
whose fault was this? who really is the one who is incapable of love? who will never be able to do this with anyone? look at your son and you will know the answer.
just by your son’s existence and his goodness, we all see that you have the ability to share your love with him, and show him that love and goodness inside you.
your sociopath unfortunately, tragically, will never have that. he will never know the joy of putting his finger inside a little hand and having that little hand close warmly around it.
that is the love that takes your breath away, not flowers on valentines day. not a trip to the beach or fine wine. that is the love your sociopath will never know.
you have love in your life. don’t worry about the future. you are just fine. happy valentine’s day. now it is time to go to your son’s school and celebrate with little children. it is a joyous day for you!
and allow yourself this moment, and only this moment, to consider what the sociopath’s valentine’s day is like. the only word that comes to mind right now is EMPTY.
first of all, he doesn’t have the priviledge of sending you flowers. too bad he missed out. he is unworthy of you – and he knows it.
we know you loved him once, and we now understand that he was born without a crucial piece that makes him human. some people are born without legs. he was born without a soul. and that is what make this all so tragic. some people just bring us pain. your sociopath is one of them. he knows it too. it is all very, very sad.
now that moment is over. now go get dressed and get to your son’s school!
wear your pink coat. have a blast! happy valentine’s day to you! you can truly understand the meaning of the day dedicated to love.
kiss your son. kiss your dog. put a pink bow in your hair and polish your nails to match. you are strong and radiant today.
love and hugs, your Valentine forever, ME
Loved, loved, loved your letter, particularly the part about teaching your son to have a conscience. How huge is that? What a tribute it is that he will not grow up to be a manipulative, evil S’path.
Most of all, love the sentiment behind it. We are our best valentines, always.
Much care to you and hugs. Welcome out from lurk-land.
How much did I love this letter too? Let me count that ways! That is so so great that you did this for yourself. This is what I am learning every day. Love myself. I wasn’t doing that when I was with the Sociopath.
Thanks for the beautiful contribution to all of us. I will think of you when I wear my pink coat! And I did just pain my toes pink. How funny.
hi guys –
i am so glad the letter cheered you up!
while i am still struggling against needing an S fix, i think letting go of anger and putting my energy into positive thoughts keeps me from sinking back into the madness.
i am so glad i am here. i think i finally found people who truly understand and with all your validation, i am ready to laugh again. can’t wait!!