Glad the article was of help and put a name to very covert, insidious abuse. It is not discussed often because many do not understand it. However, with more awareness, more people are armed with information and can protect themselves from dangerous relationships. I have read so many of these websites, desperately trying to find words that will bring me peace or closure or…something to just stop it hurting.
I was the love of his life, but I abandoned him so what was he supposed to do when this girl came and saved him where I had dropped him. Feelings of guilt transferred to me…I am so terribly insecure now, after being so independent and strong growing up! How do I get back to normal? How do I leave him behind where he belongs and stop shedding a single tear for him?
I wish there was a quick fix button…. I have a friend who has been married 20 years to a very successful physician. Here are some details of her relationship with him:. Her father is a physician as well. Her parents were very strict and controlling, enforced with verbal and physical abuse on occasion, forbidding her to go out with friends, while driving her to do well in school and other activities. When she met her future husband, they had both been recently divorced. She was about to go away for a few months for a nursing job, when he literally swept her off her feet and took her to Las Vegas to be married before she left to go on this job.
After they were married, she quit the job rather than going away. She was filled with great admiration and love for him for roughly the first half of their marriage. She thought of him glowingly as her rock, white knight and the love of her life. She did everything and anything he wanted her to do. She changed who she was to be who he wanted her to be. Instead she focused on being the best home-maker she could be. She loved to cook and perfected meals. She kept the house very clean all the time.
She did everything for their two boys. She was always very driven, so that was how she used her energy. He always had the last word on any subject related to them and their family. She spoke that often their was fear- both from her and her sons- shortly he would come home from work that everything was not done- dinner, clean house, etc. Her boys would express this as well and tell her to hurry and get things done or Dad would be angry.
Roughly 10 years ago, she had the first desire to divorce him. She was upset when he flirted with other women at parties. It was also around this time that he no longer satisfied her sexually. Still, she went on as before, but now more unhappily, mostly for the sake of their boys. A little over a year ago, she found out he was having an affair. This was devastating to her on so many levels. Apparently he had known the woman for 6 years.
She felt she had lost her best friend, husband, her rock, her everything in one blow. It challenged everything she thought about love, marriage, everything. In the months after the discovery, she would often go stay in a hotel by herself with a candle and drink by herself rather than be in the house with him. She stopped having sex with him.
Since she discovered his infidelity, he has become increasingly hostile toward her verbally. They have been in counseling for over a year now. She is increasingly stressed and unhappy with her marriage and does not want to spend any time with him because it is so unpleasant. It is this last point that is most concerning to me. My thought is that the counselor has not identified the husband as a narcissist, otherwise he would not be trying to preserve the marriage through counseling. Jade— I would suggest seeing a psychotherapist who specializes in this area as well as joining the aforementioned support forums online— with time, you will recover and move on to love someone who loves you back in a healthy way… Jay— sounds like you have a lot of concern for your friend…have you addressed your worries with her directly?
If she and her significant other are in couples therapy, then it sounds like they are working on their issues… You can always share this article with her and see what she has to say…obviously, this is not a forum to actually diagnose people…she is lucky he has such a caring and concerned friend looking out for her interests…. Andrea- thank you for the feedback and advice. I met her the other day and asked her if she thought her husband was a narcissist. This did not surprise me entirely, and yet she seems stuck in what to do.
She does not see an immediate need to end the relationship, primarily for the sake of her 14 and 16 year old sons it seems. Anyway, it appears his relationship with the other woman may have ended against his will, so now he seems more focused in a bi-polar way on her again. Their couple counseling is on an individual basis she ended the couple sessions after he repeatedly lied to the counselor. Very sad and troubling situation. And yet the counselor is trying to preserve their marriage.
Apparently she asked him for a separation a year ago, but he refused, and he said he will not divorce her either. She has said that if he asked, she would divorce him, but she is afraid of her kids reaction if she were to ask for a divorce. Jay— again, your friend is very fortunate to have your support…all you can do is continue to be a reality-tester and help her to know of resources that might assist her see bibliography — she may need a different therapist who understands narcissism more completely — it is, ultimately, your friends choice how she proceeds with her life…but, armed with information, hopefully she will choose her own self-preservation and mental health— a happy mom is a happy family, whether or not there are two parents in the picture…best wishes!
Andrea- Thanks again for your feedback. I think I have done what I can while at the same time trying to respect her privacy and independence. I get the feeling she knows what she wants to do, but is preparing for the right time for her. Thanks again. Jay- yes, it sure does sound like you have done everything you can to support your friend. Sounds like she has a good-sounding board in you. I would focus on your own self-care and release the issue at this time. Best wishes in your journey, Andrea. This is so classic — frightening really because I can identify so strongly.
I have been in a relationship much like this for 5 years. I even went to counseling and they never saw it which made me feel even more isolated and confused. Worse yet, we spend endless hours trying to figure out what we did wrong. We were not married and have no children together, thank goodness. I gave up my job to work with him, gave away most of my belongs my bad decisions and gave it my all in the relationship. He was very charismatic in the beginning but soon I realized he was shallow and unfeeling towards other people pain.
Him and I bought a house together which is down the street from my daughter and her family. When I left, I also signed this house over to him because I did not want any ties. The narc hated my son in law and never had anything nice to say about him. Now the narc and my son in law are best friends, but I know my son in law needs the money his is making off of him at this moment.
He thinks he has the narc under control…. I know he is wrong and the hatchet will fall with him as soon as the narc no longer needs him. We live in small community and the narc decided to remodel this house the one we bought together on a grand scale and so it is being noticed by everyone in this community. Originally he was going to sell it and I was all for that, just to get him away from me and family.
But now it seems he wants to keep rubbing my nose in it for breaking it off with him. He is even trying to get his family to move here???? He is taking my family to nice places to eat and giving them money which they need but it is making me feel sick to my stomach. My son and his family has broken ties with him but my son in law has not. When I broke it off with the narc, I did the no contact rule, went back to work and even starting taking some college classes.
I have accepted that he is a narc and uses people, is shallow and hurts people without a conscious. I have always been a forgiving person and I want to move on without his baggage cluttering my life. I do not want to move from this area, my family lives here, children and grandchildren,they are my family and not his, although he has a strained relationship with his kids and almost no contact with his grandchildren.
The narc always told me how wonderful my kids and grandkids were, and how they always treated him with respect. I tried to raise my children to treat others the same way they treat themselves, with dignity and respect. My children are raising their children the same way. But I am at my wits ends on how to get him to move on. I have also been told he bad mouths every chance he gets. Any advice would be appreciated on how to handle this. I am adding to my original comment, I almost feel like I am venting. Before I met the narc, I had been divorced for almost 10 years and had dated some but had not found someone I wanted to have a long term relationship with.
I had a job with people I liked, a decent place to live, was close to my family, had close friends and volunteered to help our troops. My life was good by my standards. The narc swept me off my feet; I thought he was the one. He put me on a pedestal and would call and text me. We talked of building a future together so when he suggested I quit my job and work together we are flood adjusters it seemed like the right thing to do.
We would save our money and buy a place together and grow old together. I gave up my place and gave away most of my material things; I thought I was doing the right thing. He admired how I was so close to my children and grandchildren as he was not close to his. It was slow but soon I was realized I had not seen my friends or volunteered anymore. And everything I did, wore or said was wrong, He would say mean things and hurt my feelings, but when I would say something about it, he would say I was wrong and he did not say or do those things.
I started recording some of our conversations and would play them back just to check my own memory. I really thought I was losing my mind. I was right, he was saying and doing mean things. I thought maybe his mind was not clear because he would drink almost daily and usually too much. A few months ago, he told me that he did not trust me and doubted I loved him.
It was like a light bulb went off, that was way our relationship was not in good shape. He also told me that when we met I did not have a place to live, a job, furniture or clothes. He said everything I have is because he gave it to me. He also told me that I was a drunk? I left, I signed the house we bought together over to him and did the no contact rule. I just wanted him out of my life. I almost feel he wanted my life, he wanted to be me. I have always prided myself on being close to my family, friends and community.
My family has told me I have been a great mom and nana, and they want me in their lives forever but their relationship with the narc is optional and right now they need his money the money I helped to put in our account that he withdrew down to the last penny when I told him it was over. I just want my life back free from his drama and bad mouthing of me and others including my kids who he adores now.
I have at times thought about calling him and telling him what I think of him. I would like tell him to move on and get out of our lives, but I know that will only fuel his feelings that he is special. I do not feel I should have to move away from my family, friends and community, they were mine long before they were his now I sound narcissistic. Even my kids have told me it like he wants to torture me for breaking it off. I believe they are now his narc supply and he will hurt them like he did me but they need the money right now.
I feel like I am between a rock and a hard place. I just want him gone out of my life, any suggestions would be appreciated. Leslie, many colleges have counseling services that are available at low or no cost to current students. Check with your university health service. There are therapists who do low or no cost counseling, too. I am trying to recover from a relationship in which I believe my ex is a narcissist. There were lots of red flags at the beginning e. But after a space of a week, he came back and we basically continued as normal. Over a period of time I began to live in a state of uncertainty, confusion and what I find most deplorable, is he made me question my own judgment.
I could have written your piece, nearly word for word. So grateful he did. Just dealing with the fall out of crazy making. It gets better! Helps to remind ourselves to quit thinking healthy responses can come from an unhealthy mind. I found myself baffled with his bizarre thinking. But getting out meant I could live again. Life is good. Andrea, thank you for writing this article. I will be sharing it with clients for sure. I jumped off with a whole lot of injuries, but I still am walking away, healing as I go.
You can and will too.
Only you can decide when Enough is Enough. After awhile…well, one day, you just jump off. I have read so much trying to make sense of what has happened to me. Your description is by far the best I have seen yet. It is so hard to have lived thru something that i thought i would never live thru only to come out into a world that I have no idea how to relate to anymore. It is truly like learning to live again. I am out but I still feel crazy and find myself most comfortable when I am alone. I think it is because I have become so accustomed to the feeling. Anyway I usually just read the stories but I had to respond to your perfect description of the hell they so perfectly manipulate u into willingly putting yourself into.
I really appreciated this article. I feel so empowered and could relate to many of the comments. Where is part two??? Will he ever come out of this disaster. He hated her an seen her nasty ways before the brainwashing began. He is now 18 graduating in 6 months and hoping to join the military. NM started this when she found out he told the law about sisters abuse.
Should I just let go…. How can I actually find a therapist trained in treating the victims of narcissistic abuse? Hi Toni, Thanks for your question. If you use the Advanced Search function on GoodTherapy. After selecting a therapist or several to email, you may want to specify that you are looking for some help in recovery from narcissistic abuse. The vast majority who specialize in abuse or relationship problems will have experience and expertise with concerns about narcissism. His personality traits include but not limited to — self critical about weight, getting older, name dropping, always talking about his past achievements, loved to get new things all the time, he helped me get my first car and credit card, he was often critical of celebrities but always loved the lifestyle of the rich and famous, he would always compare himself to his sibling who made great money.
After the break up, he treated me cold.
The one thing that still holds me to believe he had some sort of heart was how big of a mess he was breaking up with me, he was sobbing, and kept apologizing and said he still loved me. It was a big cluster fuck of emotions. In hindsight, he had left what he claimed to be his best friend since high school to start a relationship with me. According to him, his best friend had been in love with him a long time and was jealous of him dating me. Put on your Nike sneakers and run!
If he was right for you you never would have to ask that question. Wow, I think that is one of the best answers I have seen on one of these sites. You nailed it! We get very hung up on a diagnosis, and it makes sense that we do. So, my point is this, sometimes we just want an answer! And sometimes we see and learn that we too are sick in ways, and that these unhealed things are what the Narc would use. These are OUR points of progress we can come away with, though, that we can take the stuff in ourselves that the Narc pointed to and face it, own it, and heal it.
And we need to heal our selves, our hearts. We do not have to be broken, but can have ourselves been broken open. Thank you for your very simple answer, and for reading my long-winded reply. I have just got out of a relationship with a person who has all the characteristics. I feel hurt, angry and empty. I tried so hard and it was draining. I met this girl about 6 years ago and liked her.
About a year ago she got fired from her job. So I called her and we started seeing each other. Her sense of humor was sarcastic like mine. She was maninpulative, but in a very attractive way; a real turn on. She was like a dream girl. She was having financial problems so I started helping her out with her groceries, gas, utilities, insurance, student loan, etc… It all added up to about over 10 months. Despite all this her house was going into foreclosure in January. So I loaned her another Ever since that loan her attitude has changed dramatically. We had some arguments before, but not like these.
The verbal abuse is shocking. She would make threats all the time. For example after about a month of this verbal abuse and being stood up multiple times, she calls me and wants me to help her out with her utility payment or they are shutting off her power. So for about 3 days she gave me non stop verbal abuse over the phone. Well I snapped and I finally let into her about the way she had been treating me since I loaned her that money.
Her response was not that she was sorry, but that she would never forgive me. I stated that she had abused me 10 times the amount I had been mean to her. She then stated that I was a compulsive liar and that she did not trust me and she threatened to never see me again. I disagreed with that to no avail. I just wanted things to go back to the way they were before I loaned her that money. When she was like a dream girl. So she calls me up and she wants a new bike.
So I said I am not going to get her anything because the more I do for her the worse she treats me. She lit into me like I have never heard. She said that I never give her anything out of the kindness of my heart, that she hates me, and I am an idiot.
I called her on Monday and stated that it was a good idea not to talk for the next 2 weeks. I think perhaps she has a new victim because she has only texted me a couple of times over the last 4 days. I am disinterested in everything now and I feel like I have no purpose, i. So many times I knew here texts were going to be nasty, but I just had to read them. It was like I was addicted to the pain. Sounds like u have really been taken advantage of. At this point I think u need to cut your losses and run away; no looking back. Reading your story is just like you put my thoughts into words!
Its not easy.. Ive lied to myself for bout 5 years…… its painful!! Be blessed.. BPD people are at the mercy of their over reaching and over active emotions, with a large touch of seeing the world as a cynical and untrustable place thrown in. Our largest problem is an exisistential fear of abandonement. BPD hurt others only secondary to intense fear of abandonement and the pain that it evokes. They often feel extreme guilt and empathy days, weeks or even months later for the hurt they cause over reacting to this fear.
Narcissists are in fact the exact opposite. They hurt people because they are not in touch with themselves and their feeling. What this says about the human condition is that healthy people fall somewhere between these two extremes. Ansel…you are certainly entitled to your opinion. However, I respectfully disagree. Best wishes to you. I should be over it, right? Right after I left Brett Gyllenskog swooped up one of my good friends, she was moved in with him within a month of me leaving.
I thought that she was one of my best friends. I just have to remind myself that I also fell victim to his manipulation so many times. She is now in the same pain I was and although my hurt and anger are still here ultimately I feel pity on her. I just wanted to thank all of you that have commented and to those who wrote the article. Especially all the parts about, sleep, reactive depression, nightmares, etc.. I thought I was crazy and totally lame that I still carry the pain around and dream of him and her so often still. They will manipulate you every time you try to leave.
I promise that It will never end! It is impossible for them to change because of the type disorder they have does not allow them to look at themselves the way that we can and they NEVER will be able to. So ultimately please hear my advice… I do realize that kids and marriage make this even more complex and difficult …. I accidentally replied to Julie but meant to reply to u Stacey. Thank you for this — i left him and he managed to sway me back only to leave me 5 weeks ago and move straight in with someone else and the son she has with one of his friends.
I can so relate to your words! I am in the middle of a messy divorce with my narcissistic sociopathic husband. He was a cowboy; a man of integrity. There was not an ounce of integrity in him. It was impossible for him to go through a day without lying multiple times. How foolish I was! I put every penny I had after selling my paid-for home and everything I owned into his run-down neglected ranch and worked myself nearly to death saving it and building the assets. We live in a resort mountain community and lack for nothing.
Happy New Year!
He loves that I know how to do things but hates me for it. He would have preferred it if I had died. He started dating 2 weeks after I left and, of course, chose one of my fiends. He makes sure I know he is giving my things away. All of his children have been turned against me. He intentionally does things to hurt my children, who adored him. He is totally evil and without conscience or empathy. One of the hardest things to come to terms with has been accepting the fact that that wonderful, tender, gentle cowboy that I so completely loved…devoted my life to….
NEVER existed. That is a very bitter pill to swallow.
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All of this is true. I think the point at which you start to feel confused like maybe YOU are the one who is narcissistic is a big red flag that it is time to go. At that point the NARC has gotten to you! One thing I have discovered is that a NARC is often generous to you and your friends and family This may also confuse you. It is about their reflection ie how their being generous reflects on them and makes them look good as well as being a disguise! In other word it is all about THEM.
This was a major realization for me. I got into this situation and it took six months to realize he was a narcissist. The way I got in it and got stuck was my codependency issues. There is a more subtle form of this abuse, which can be found in the high functioning and covert narcissist, often found in women, who are astute enough not to blow there cover. Be prepared for your efforts to confront the abuser to be met with lies and denials, having your history changed and distorted ever so discreetly, See the tim Gaslight and you be made to look like the abuser.
You may all end up looking foolish and loosing friends, but those that leave were captivated by the abuser and in a way victims also. It hurts, and the mess after hurts too, but the most profound disturbance comes from knowing that it was all a lie. Look at your boundaries. My relationship lasted 7 years. Or should I say I stayed to be humiliated, lied to, abused and romanced. I changed so much I felt dead inside, when driving to his home I would feel sick and never knew what to expect.
I in all honesty cannot remember the worst abuse, but do remember sitting in the fetal position for days knowing I was bad and till the last 2 years rang up and begged forgiveness. I was told he was not sure if I were a suitable person for him to have a relationship with. I was too serious to casual, I was never right. Then he would give me cars, trips overseas. So I always thought how could he be bad, he was generous. My work peers thought I had the best man on earth.
I made every meal he ate but that was nothing because when he took me to dinner it was much more expensive than anything I did. In the end I began to forget how o cook, afraid to tell him my children had come to dinner without him knowing. If he knew they had been to dinner it was always you cook for them and get too tired. No it was cooking for others that annoyed him. The last time I was badly behaved he said it is over and why I did it I dont know I said thank you good bye.
Blocked his phone number after many hang up calls from him. I am still shell shocked but I will never make contact again. I would rather be alone than be frightened to be myself and be controlled to the stage I had died. I hope you still check this. Mine always used to complain that the food I made for my kids was way better than what I made for him. I am 3 months out of discard after 10 years and am having a rough day. Any words of wisdom? What he envied the most. Own that. YOU are awesome! Recognize that what he says is just him blowing it out of his ass.
One of many small but nasty behaviours. He left his own son when he was 6 months old and I now think he was put out when the attention was not solely on him. These narcs are Teflon coated so nothing sticks to them while they leave a trail of wreckage in their wake. I have been on a merry go round for 6 years with a man who displays all year traits. Overly generous to those around him, never thankless about it though. One minute loved me next minute was cold and mean.
When I would receive a text or call I was never sure who I would get. Sometimes i would monitor myself as I knew certain things would set him off and I wanted to keep the peace. One comment I read really resonated with me, and that was about putting up boundaries and then removing them. I moved in, I moved out. I got pregnant he made my life difficult, while celebrating it with his friends. It was a confusing hell. You question your own sanity, and it destroys your self esteem.
As you are constantly having to pump up their esteem. Almost creating a fight to avoid to be there for you. Andrea, I am currently trying to raiser awareness about this type of abuse here in Ohio. It has not been easy. In fact, worldwide, it seems as if the United States is lagging significantly behind Ireland, England and Australia when it comes to any sort of acknowledgement about this type of abuse.
I have found everything you have described in your article above to be on target with what victims of this type of abuse endure in trying to remove themselves from these toxic relationships but also in regaining their sense of identity once they are free from the abuse. Without the awareness and insight into the reality of what they went through, victims are significantly at risk for being preyed upon by other Narcissists.
I am finding that currently, victims are relying on social media sites to get an understanding of what happened. That is fraught with complications of its own.
Time and Space (Crazy Good, #3) by Rachel Robinson
Promoting awareness about this heinous form of abuse seems to be tricky. Could you comment? Thank you very much for your time. A little late to the to discussion but I saw you mentioned Ohio. These books will soon be cataloged at a Twin Lakes Library System branch near you. I recommend requesting your most wanted titles to ensure the opportunity to check it out. We all added many new-to-us books to our private collections in our homes. And now our eyes are turned to the New Books List hanging on the wall near the circulation desks at our branches. These titles are soon to be arriving and cataloged.
If you're already on the Request List then we thank you for patiently waiting. For those who would like to get on a Request List for these titles, please see a staff member. All images provided by GoodReads. Blast Off with New Books. Newly Cataloged Books of the Summer. Newly Cataloged. Welcome Spring! New Arrivals. The newest of the new are on their way for you. Stay connected with your library card account. January's Arrivals. Happy New Year! Last New Books Order. Need more information?
Talk with a member of our staff today. New Reads. Newest Arrivals. October is already here. The Annual Library Fair has come and gone. The newest list of books to come will be available soon. Hold Me Until Forever. Protecting What's Theirs. Recipe for Temptation. No Strings Attached. Slow Ride. Cathryn Fox. Chasing Mr. Tempting Her Best Friend. Gina L. Stealing His Heart. Taming His Tutor. Natalie Anderson. Rising Assets. Rebecca Zanetti. Recipe for Attraction. Lover Undercover. Make Me, Take Me.
Making over the Billionaire. Joan Kilby. Taking Control. No Romance Required. Playing For Her Heart. Megan Erickson. Kissing Mr.
Defense for the Devil
Kerri Carpenter. Delicious Temptation. Sabrina Sol. Game for Trouble. Karen Erickson. Tempting the Bodyguard. Rules of Seduction. Her Forbidden Risk. Her Fantasy Husband. His Fantasy Girl. Tempting the New Boss. Changing His Game. Taking the Score. Kate Meader. Wild Ride. His Best Mistake. Officer Off Limits. Down the Aisle. Best Friends with Benefits.
Candy Sloane. Hold Me Until Morning. Once Upon a Dare. Jennifer Bonds. Forever Theirs. Katee Robert. Theirs Ever After. Desperate Measures. Their Second Chance. Make Me Want. Seducing the Bridesmaid. A Fool For You. The Wedding Pact. His Forbidden Desire. Make Me Yours. Foolproof Love. In Bed with Mr. His Lover to Protect. Falling For His Best Friend. Forbidden Promises. Fool Me Once. His to Take. His to Keep.
Prom Queen. Undercover Attraction. Ties That Bind. Meeting His Match.