Editor’s note: Lovefraud offers authors who write about their experience with sociopaths an opportunity to tell the Lovefraud community about their books. Aleena Grace Barteau wrote, “Bow Down B**ch! — Being a Fool, Loving a Liar; under the controlling power of an abusive man,” which is available on Amazon.
By Aleena Grace Barteau
My abuser is a sociopath. I had never heard the term before until one day when I met with my counselor in a desperate attempt to “fix” the relationship—because I loved my abuser so much. My therapist, who had a Ph.D. in psychology, had been working with the two of us. After spending much time with us both, running some psychological tests on my partner, and observing our interactions, he came to the professional conclusion that the man I loved was a sociopath.
This term was new to me so I began reading everything I could about sociopaths. This led me to the understanding that there was no hope for a future with him; that due to the nature of his personality disorder, any authentic change was unlikely. This is when I began my disconnect. This is when I knew it had to be over for me.
Leaving was almost as hard as being with him. It came with its own challenges. I was so lost back then, trying to recover from all the insanity that was woven in my head by a very crafty sociopath. Because of the trauma that was so ingrained in me and the craziness that I went through, I knew I had a unique story and that it needed to be heard.
I began writing while still in the relationship to help make sense of the confusion in my head. After the relationship ended, I worked endlessly on my book for several more years. I put it down at times when life took over, but eventually finished it and published my book on Amazon in 2021. I have also written poems and short stories about my experience, which I share on my author website.
“Bow Down, B**ch!” These are real words that came from my abuser. They sum up so much about the abusive relationship and the abuser’s attempts to gain control. “Bow down!” Submit to my control or I will make you pay!
An excerpt from my book:
I was on the floor when I awoke to him dragging me to the living room. As I attempted to stand in effort to get away, he demanded that I “bow down” to him. He kept yelling, “Bow down, bitch!” as he kept pushing my head and upper-back downward. I maintained my stance despite my fear and shame, trying to stand up against his will and strength. I said that I would die before I bowed down to him. He became increasingly agitated every time I refused. I could see the anger on his face as he said, “bow down!” I could tell that he was crazy with frustration that I was still fighting back and not cowering, not bowing like he ordered me to do. I would not bow down in submissiveness—I would have let him kill me before I would have done so. It was the only ounce of dignity that I could salvage after he had stripped so much of it from me—actually, after I had let him take it from me.
My sociopath abuser slithers through life crafting games of control. It is a terrifying realization that humans are capable of such calculating behavior. I crossed paths with one of them and had to share my story.
I have been told that I might consider changing the name of my book; that it might offend some readers. But I choose to leave it alone in that the point of the title is that it is all ugly. It should offend us. All the ugliness of abuse, power and control, as well as systematic oppression and exploitation, should not be fluffed over.
My story can be shocking at times. It is raw, authentic, and full of deep thoughts and ugly behaviors. I did not hold back or gloss over reality in my story. I want all the sludge of the story to be felt and experienced so that it can be used as a learning platform in any way that it is meant to. I believe that if we attempt to conceal the reality, we cannot genuinely learn. The potential tool that the story provides then may become stifled. Instead, I leave myself vulnerable so that others can connect with what happened to me, learn from it and therefore, implement change where possible.
Bow Down B**ch! — Being a Fool, Loving a Liar; under the controlling power of an abusive man is available on Amazon.