My first boyfriend from 15-21 I suppose became an alcoholic.... we did get engaged but I broke it off in the end because he was just drinking far too much and we had become completely different people. We had lots of fights and had a very volatile relationship.
My second boyfriend from 22-30 was addicted to cannabis and had a terrible temper. He ruined family holidays and events by drinking too much, broke things, was violent and I was stupid to stay with him so long. I suppose I woke up one day and realised that love was not enough and he would never chnage.
My now boyfriend I think is emotionally abusive but I dont know if it is something I am doing because lightning does not strike thrice! He calls me names like fat, whale, pig (i am a size 12uk).... he comments on what I eat, when I eat, telling me I will get dumped if I gwt fatter... he tells me he hates my cats and i have to get rid of them (after agreeing they could move in to his new house prior to me putting my flat on the market and accepting an offer). I spend all my time with him and have been rennovating his house with him (although I have not invested any money he has had an awful amount of my time). I can never talk to him calmly or sensibly because he acts crazy and starts shouting ans storming off like a child not listening. He gets very angry if I dont do exactly what he wants when he want... the child comes out and I just cant cope any more. The problem is, the above happens 15% of the time, the other 85% I love him, he is like my best friend and we get on great and I dont know what to do. I have never had a boyfriend that actually seems to like me. It just seems like normallity to have angry men who put me down. I am not sure what more I can do. I strive for perfection and cook dinners, keep a lovely home, host lovely events in the holidays. I want to get married and have children but I dont think they will happen for me. I was desperately trying to hold on as my flat sells in 8 weeks and I become homeless, I wanted to move into the house we are rennovating as I put in so much work... I also dont want to lose my best friend. What do I do... am I crazy? Should I be running to find my soul mate or are realationships all just shit like this??
you definitely should be running away from him. you need take a lot of time and care in choosing your next lover. surely avoid anyone with bad habits like alcoholics and druggies. there are many great respectful men available.
how do you dress and care for your appearance? where do you go to hook up with men? how do you respond when a new guy shows interest in you? there is definitely some short comings in you to end up with three losers in a row. but not enough details here to really guide you.
i never limit myself to one guy relationships. variety is the spice of life. i always make this clear to anyone romantically interested in me that they will never be "my only one". this makes dumping one lover easy and keeps them on their toes in caring for me.
Yes, you should be running, you're spot-on (well done - seriously - well done!)....I promise you faithfully - you should, you should, you should. Do *not* move further into his territory.
Here you go... Excuse the length, but you've got a deadline... Red Flags that you are with/have been basically captured, kept drugged-up and passed around (like a secret, tacitly operating paedo ring) from amateur to semi-pro to veteran-pro Narcissistic Abuser (and now you've had enough of their type's sh*t to last you a lifetime):
- www.thriveafterabuse.com (mutually linked to her website if you prefer articles-only)
- letmereach.com (ditto)
These will bring up a whole load of other victim-therapists/experts/coaches, like Richard Grannon, Angela Atkinson, Melanie Tonia-Evans... - there are loads on-board, now, compared to even 10 years ago...a victim/target revolution taking off at great speed.
Loads of Angels willing to help you. Including, with practical and financial self-help and -rescue measures galore. There is also the gorgeous ladies at Outreach, etc.
Start your journey with the above links until you progress to the articles/videos that explain 100% how in "La-La Land" it is not one iota your fault because by the laws of normal human dynamics it cannot be - because this is not about mere incompatibility, but different planets: one partner being sane and healthy and the other - intrinsically a predator-parasite that cannot function/survive adult-independently - an utter lunatic who knows how & when to hide it and when & with whom to safely let it all hang loose and in the process, get him his way IN his way or it's the byway (his gf/missus, personal punching-bag)...whom 'incarcerates' you before emotionally battering you into (he hopes) a however-permanent Stepford Wife (you watch the original film with new eyes, now, go on). Or Stepford Husband. (Master/Mistress <--> Servant....Predator <--> Prey ...muscles, height, weight - no defence!)
But regards these Red Flags, IMO they should say 'of a Malignant Narcissist' because Benigns are, more than not in my experience, just naturally too apt to be selfish and self-centred all the time, not really capable of a two-way-street relationship but unwittingly with willing to change THUS CHANGEABLE by learning-by-rote until it 'takes' (the Maligs LIKE getting their own way by false charm or brute force, either/both). The Malignant Narcissist which includes Sociopaths and Psychopaths with NPD comorbidly, are romantic conmen who, not just spout sweet nothings for too long to convince you to entrust your heart and whatever material-else to them, but also FOR DELIBERATELY 'TOO' LONG DO THE ACTIONS AND GESTURES AS WELL, which is what convinces us *beyond* convinced, that, bar "anger management and hair-trigger issues", he DOES really-really love you underneath it all. Now you're conned (they usually don't even LIKE you and are just pretending!), with psychology and biochemistry to match, and paralysed against (and too damn knackered and deflated/depressed!) to be capable of choosing between Stay or Leave (try reading, "Too Good To Leave/Too Bad To Stay" by Mira Kirshenbaum, about abuser-partners, generally, and be willingly and nicely forced in record time to reach your truthful, now-comfortable decision.)
If he 'loves' you, it's like a kid loves ice-cream (see Narcissistic Supply). They're not capable of love, most (bar your normal but overly egotistical, and your abnormal but low on the scale, the Benign Narcissist) or at best, can't grow a relationship attachment beyond the 6-month depth and stage (even if together for years, decades..)...hence just keep repeating the same short cycle with you and others. But all are, ultimately, horribly incapable of a healthy, happy relationship - fact; plus that wasn't usually their aim to begin with, just the wolf's sheep costume (google "narcissist's mask"). So in answer to your Am I Doomed question, I take immense pleasure in telling you, NOPE! But safest if you stick to seeking support *solely* from those in the know, kiddo:
"Narcissists are classic frauds—at love, parenting, friendship, and any other important relationship in life. Because they lack the ability to recognize and empathize with others’ experiences and emotions, narcissists are incapable of authentic intimacy, kindness, or selfless giving." - by Julie L. Hall - from "The Bully, Coward, Liar, and Fraud" in The Narcissist Family Files blog / PsychCentral.com
But here's the answer with explanations you want the most:
(Saint Dana again) www.youtube.com - "WHY DO I KEEP MEETING SO MANY NARCISSISTS?"
Even your top, prominent psychologists and psychiatrists, even Cluster-B specialists!, get romantically conned, doncha know. So it's never about strength and intelligence, either, because you're injected over-fast and over-copiously with Honeymoon Heroin - and literally *anyone* can be bonked over the head then kept drugged for total compliance's sake (Master-Slave).
The Three 'Es' (by Dr. Craig Malkin, Clinical Psychologist & Lecturer, Harvard Medical School):
3. Empathy Impairment
The Narcissistic "Relationship" (i.e. Abuse) Cycle:
3. Discard (pretend-dump)
And that is genuinely solely what the malignants/Cluster Bs is concerned with and allowed to commit whatever levels of crimes by, his/her whole life: Want it...Deserve it...Going to Take It...Don't Care If I Hurt & Trick You...(Don't Take Blame, Blame Personal Scapegoat & Don't Get Found Out/Nicked).
I love you sooooo much!-lend-us-a-Tenner-and-pay-all-the-bills?" and/or "-take-my-sh*t-so-I'll-feel-better/still-perfect?". Overall, what you believe are relationships are JUST A SICK GAME to them...they think being a 'successful' bully-trickster makes them really special and clever. (I know, isn't it unbelievable?! But that's because they're MENTALLY ILL. How does anyone sane EXPECT a seriously psychologically inadequate and damaged human TO think and behave, not least at closest of close quarters!? PS: Watch Peep Show to realise through your empowering, legitimately detachment-fast-forwarding howls of laughter, how ultimately ludicrous, pointless/unproductive, and *self*-destructive they are.)
There are many avenues LEADING BACK TO THE ONE THING that makes you vulnerable to repeated "fauxlationships", including this one: BEING A GOOD, HEALTHY SPECIMEN THUS HAVING A HEART! But if we don't know the current ex was an NPD/BPD/AsPD (Cluster B mental illness) or what that even is, or that lightning can strike FIFTY times in La-La Land, we can - for one vulnerability example - think we've spent an appropriately healthy and sensible amount time and/or effort at shaking off our grief so are ready for the next partner. Not in La-La Land. Here you need longer because you also have invisible slime (priming) to shake and shower off and (if unaware of it or without access to a shower) have slide off in its own sweet time. If you go onto the mating grounds sporting even a molecule of it, still, these predators with actual brain-wiring deficits and differences, with their dangerous predator-level senses, literally CAN SMELL YOU A MILE OFF (and same goes for if you flew your childhood family nest and/or teen social nest however much slimed). And pounce (or manipulate you to advance). So the ONLY thing you 'did wrong' (pff) was something you understandably hadn't ever had a clue you should be doing! Which equates to NOT A THING WRONG, ZERO FAULT, ZERO CUPABILITY (well, hey, even the NPD relationship cloud has a silver lining! ).
IMO, the earliest, biggest, most easily spot-able - IF YOU CAN KEEP YOUR HEAD, NOT LET YOURSELF FLOAT UP TO CLOUD 9 FOR-REAL - Red Flag is this: Him (or her) TRYING TO RUSH AND FAST-FORWARD INTIMACY AND COMMITMENT, via "Love-Bombing"...feeding your ego....which then becomes a short-lived, emergency top-up measure only, to drag your decision-making process toward Leaving, back to Can't Decide, Don't Know What To Do (Somebody Help Me). What - aren't they equally vulnerable thus worried and cautious over their heart? Answer: NOPE. That's how they can proceed recklessly (Love-Bomb-Love-Bomb!..). You'll get to read in your research, why male and female targets often miss/are overly distracted from this sign or can't even react and respond to it (drugged and out-of-it is as drugged and out-of-it does).
Unlike normal predators constrained by laws of physics and physicality, these psychological batterer-drainer predators don't have to pick the slow and weak ones. They can choose the 'Bluest'-blooded animal to suck the life from...someone sexy, charismatic and/or with a sexy, charismatic heart/vibe - to make them look good to 'their public'. It's not even about looks, it's about vitality and charisma. (= YOU'RE AN IMPRESSIVE CATCH.)
If you can't keep your head at that early warning stage, your 'vitality/determination' (strength of survival instinct) then gets to step up in regards to what, when presented for the first few times with whatever escape opportunities that are utterly all-elements ripe for success, you dare or simply have to do (leg-it). Ber-bom.
This is too good not to duplicate in-full for yourself and other members to read, and realise - THIS IS NOT MELODRAMA, IT'S REAL, FOLKS:
By Kim Saaed - letmereach.com
Why does narcissistic abuse often affect us so differently than other traumatic events?
It goes without saying that all traumatic events are deeply impactful and life-altering. They knock us into an emotional tailspin, threatening our sense of security about life, and they often force us to make serious changes in the way we live.
Consider muggings, car accidents, and earthquakes. A mugging happens because someone needs money and they think you have it. Car accidents (where you are not at fault), like natural disasters, are random, outwardly meaningless events that can be just as devastating as muggings, if not more so, because they may result in permanent physical injuries or the destruction of your most cherished property.
Any of these three events, obviously, can cause permanent emotional scarring, but they are all in a different category than narcissistic abuse. Narcissistic abuse FEELS different. It has its damaging effects on a different psychological level. It is not just an emotional injury, it is a spiritual injury.
The main reasons for this are that narcissistic abuse is deliberately inflicted by someone you love and it targets you for who you are, the very ESSENCE of you. It is a long-term, calculated campaign to make you feel unworthy and despise yourself, and to have you believe other people view you in the same light.
A mugging is based on any person who walks by who has a purse or wallet. Car crashes happen because someone wasn’t paying attention, a tire blows out, or because of inclement weather. And earthquakes are just random natural events. Muggings, car crashes, and earthquakes can happen to anyone, anywhere, anytime…but they have nothing to do with the sort of person you are.
Narcissistic abuse, on the other hand, is calculated to focus like a laser beam on just this dimension of your psyche. The narcissistic abuser wants you to believe that no one cares about you, and that no one should care about you, because you, as a person, are not loveable, have no redeeming qualities, and are a waste of space and time.
['...as such, unworthy of good treatment, not even from one's allegedly No. 1 Fan', I, Soulmate, would like to add]
The abuser learns your hopes, dreams, fears, painful memories…and turns them all against you in order to weaken your spirit and make it more compliant with the abuser’s wishes. The narcissistic abuser takes advantage of your forgiving personality and repeatedly exploits your fear of abandonment in order to make you more dependent on them and more likely to stay attached to them—despite (or rather, paradoxically, because of) the misery you find yourself in.
Traumatic events and natural disasters may change our physical capacities, our way of life, and our outlook for the foreseeable future, but in many cases, they can also instill a renewed motivation for life, love, and healthy relationships. They can create challenges and hardships for us, but, because they do not devastate our feelings of self-worth, they do not crush our spirit.
Narcissistic abuse, in contrast, is soul-crushing. That is why the trauma feels so different and also why it is so much more difficult to overcome. We are left feeling so utterly helpless and hopeless in our spirit. We feel we lack the spiritual strength to stand up for ourselves and escape our misery, so we instead keep digging ourselves into a deeper spiritual hole.
The Bigger Picture
That is how narcissistic abuse works, why it is so debilitating, and why it feels different than other forms of emotional trauma. And these are the reasons why I don’t believe people should try to make things work with a narcissist, regardless of whether they’re a lover, spouse, sibling, parent, co-worker, or friend. The only hope for a victim of narcissistic abuse is to make a clean split from the source of the spiritual injury.
And this why I become outraged every time I see a licensed counselor or psychology PhD touting the possibility of a repaired relationship with a narcissist. Such empty promises serve only to exacerbate the narcissism epidemic we’re experiencing right now, as well as the emotional suffering experienced by targets of this kind of abuse—to say nothing of the tragic indirect effects narcissistic abuse has on the victims’ families and the wider community.
And these are also the reasons why I do not encourage sympathizing with narcissists, or viewing them more like helpless, wounded individuals rather than the cruel and sadistic tormentors they really are. They may have been wounded as children and that’s unfortunate, for sure. But those children are long gone, leaving only an adult with an underdeveloped level of emotional maturity, non-existent emotional intelligence, and deficient attachment capabilities. What’s left in that child’s place is merely a scheming manipulator who doesn’t give a care about anyone except themselves.
Instead of feeling sorry for a lost child who has grown into an adult who’s hell-bent on destruction and chaos at all costs, we should instead focus on the children we have in our families, our schools, and our societies. We should focus on removing our own children from toxic environments, when possible, so they have a chance at healing and developing a healthy sense of self. We should focus on the children we have now so we can heal generational dysfunction instead of perpetuating it.
We shouldn’t forget about the past, because it’s often the past that keeps us from repeating mistakes and helps us stay motivated to keep moving forward…but we should stop counting on the “maybes” the “what ifs”, and the vain hope that narcissists might change. Instead, we must try to work on healing the damage they’ve done to our spirits and ending the chaos that they’ve brought into our lives so that future generations won’t have to learn, as we have had to learn, why narcissistic abuse feels so different than other forms of emotional trauma.
“Listen to the mustn’ts, child. Listen to the don’ts. Listen to the shouldn’ts, the impossibles, the won’ts. Listen to the never haves, then listen close to me… Anything can happen, child. Anything can be.” — Shel Silverstein
Copyright 2017 Kim Saeed and Let Me Reach
Take your time, it's a lot to digest. I'm just sorry I don't have the time to unwire you from his and his predecessors' matrix more gradually and gently. Take your time and then talk about it some more if you want to.
But note he's got you helpless, now down to thinking you rely 100% on him for a roof over your head. You're about to be lured via prior sh*tty mechanisms and measures into the 2nd stage, higher-security dungeon.
Read and watch as fast as you can manage, while considering making other living arrangements for the time being.
I also promise you you *will* be running towards the Healthier Male Pool when you next go a-fishing (once free of slime), never again the toxic pool - this - having the b*lls to trust strangers' good motives and your own social and survival instinct is the doorway TO that healthier direction. It's a gauntlet run, conducted in the psychological environment within the psychological version of the universe (in our heads) because - for every physical/tangible entity in this existence, there is a psychological equivalent - Done-The-Maths Fact! Life/Nature *is* that cleverer than us mere mortals. And this: you - if you stop THINKING and WORRYING and just "one, two, three, JUMP!", are, after a period of grieving, going to be utterly fine at worst and so much better and happier at best. This is a win/win situation. How could it not be, when it's a healthy'un running from the heavily-disguised asylum she doesn't belong in and never did!
This is not your fault, he is not your best friend, and no, not all relationships are like this. We all have our weaknesses and emotional vulnerabilities, but yours should not suggest that you are expected and owed some maltreatment. Remember, narcissists intentionally make you feel bad about yourself to reinforce their own mental health issues. An awareness of how you feel when you are with them as well as Narcissistic Behavior Disorders can be a great discovery for self protection. You are worthy of a family (yes, family) that loves you unconditionally. Thank God mine does.
“Hang on” and if you want to explore the options to “homelessness”, let us know.
Reason being: Even when they seem to be back in a good, loving, (hmm) fair-minded, (sort-of) responsible period (Love-(Re-)Bombing...although it's never as intense or passionate as when originally trying to get their hooks into you) - which lasts a couple of days/weeks/months, dependant on size of monster - MEANWHILE, they're doing this behind your back and under your radar:
1. Financial Abuse aka "What's yours is mine and what's mine is mine":
- Financially of good or stable status but over the months and years getting RICHER off of you by "somehow" manipulating you into taking total financial responsibility for all bills while they get to save and spend their own earnings (e.g. the spouse who's denied access to the so-called Marital bank accounts, etc., meanwhile saving the user from the cost of a housekeeper, nanny, cleaner, cook, laundry person, social and chore organiser, gardener, handyperson; refusing to marry you 'into' half-ownership of "their" house and finances), etc. Meaning, know you know WHY they're comfortably-off or rich!
- Presenting as financially sound and capable but then, the minute they move in with you (then managing to wheedle a premature marriage or over-embroilment, financially, in whatever ways) and feel safe from being dumped/divorced - "whoops!"-losing their job and going on the dole / finding it "impossible" to find regular, paid work; needing support during an internship, etc., meaning, not only don't they contribute half, but AREN'T EVEN COVERING WHAT THEY COST *YOU* TO KEEP. ("Ma-ma!") Nor even paying-in-kind by saving you the cost of a handyman, gardener, repair-man, babysitter, cleaner...not even if they promised as a pre-condition to your being *capable* of funding another grown adult (and/or your existing kids) from your pay-packet/savings. They then earn cash-in-hand, doing ducking & diving, behind your back which goes straight into their secret bank account that you've no idea exists.
- Stealing from you. Just for the 'fun and power' of it or to "get you back, you b*tch/b*st'd (in which case it'll have huge sentimental value to you) for some minor or purely mis-perceived slight or 'disobedience'.
- Stealing items from you/your kids to secretly sell off the back of a lorry for cash.
- Breaking things, either in "accidental" fashion or during a Narcissistic Rage (meet real-life Chucky or Gremlin) that 'you' started by wanting to talk about anything other than how wonderful he is or anything that obliges him to act like a grown-up.
And meanwhile, both types - treating the house like a hotel and you like their personal chamberlaid and slave, including sex-slave (even if you're exhausted, ill, post-operative, the baby's crying its face off). So not only are you free sugar-mummy or -daddy but a permanently, increasingly, inexorably run-down one.
Having secret affairs / partners / spouses (these are the bigamists) or "would bes" and "would-be agains" on the side, at whatever point bringing said other(s) onto your radar so that you're in constant, jealous-made competition for your rightful exclusivity. This includes Secret Smear-Campaigning: they KNOW they can't succeed a relationship, that it's just a matter of time, that you're a temporary thing, and so they quite quickly set about, not just Isolating you but turning your friends and relatives against you by subtly feeding lies, like you don't actually like/love them and never did. That way, your normal, sensibles can't tell you they think he (or she) or what s/he's doing is downright iffy and thereby remove your over-Rose Tinteds for you.
If you try to get them to answer to this and/or then complain that they turned the issue into an excuse to emotionally batter you yet again, you'll get told both things are your fault. This is a deliberate tack - to manipulate/provoke a specific emotional reaction/response in you before then nastily criticising you for being in that state (- Gaslighting).
(Playground stuff, huh? Exactly. Because they're emotionally retarded...still operating as a school-, possibly kindergaarten-, ager.)
......And so on and so forth.
This is one of the reasons why, even though the Narc has been long gone for, say, over a year (so far), you can't "get over it" and people who don't have that horrid experience are scratching their heads over why. No, course not... You keep coming across evidence of the above plus a whole nightmare-ish plethora of conning, destroying, ruining/sabotaging. They say of the NPD relationship, it's the gift that just keeps on giving. (It does make you stronger, though, and obviously far stronger than the normal relationship and break-up...if you keep your teeth gritted for the inevitable getting-over.)
Plus, they don't love you - bar Cupboard-Love (you've got sweeties, be my friend). Even pretending to *like* you.
I mean - COME ON... No-one that liked you would embark on doing that to you - for years, even decades. And they especially wouldn't...COULDN'T... go from 'Ohhh, I love you sooo much, you've no idea how much [coo-coo]' to this:
YOU F***KING STUPID B*TCH-WH*RE, I COULD F***KING SLIT YOUR THROAT RIGHT NOW IF I HAD A KNIFE HANDY...[throws precious object against wall and makes 'going to backhand you/punch you round the face hard' motions/gestures, and proceeds telling you (ignoring your hysterical sobs) you why you're sh*t, fat, ugly, your friends don't actually like you, he knows so because - lie...lie.., and so on............Chucky / Wet Gremlin). Or they just act like they're the poor victim and you the horrid abuser (for asking them, 'WHEN did you say, again, you could pay something towards the housekeeping? / trim the hedge?').
Ergo, with abuse not being solely about verbal - the Malignant NPD relationship's Dark-to-Light Ratio is, from finally-got-my-hooks-into-you to finish [drum roll]....
Shocking, but true. At very best (said cupboard-love) you've got 90:10.
["run, Forrest, run!"]
Good on ya! See you back on your thread for the ins-and-outs.