Me and my ex were great we were together just short of 2 years it wasnt easy we both had a child. But the last weeks of the relationship we started arguing over silly things mainly me always working and helping everyone else out but not making time for her. It all got on top of me and i left, i said i needed time and wasnt happy. For the next few days she continually tried to change my mind but i was stupidly stubborn and said i loved her but needed more time. She went out that weekend and after the weekend i tried to contact her and say i had made a massive mistake. She didnt want to know, this was the end of November, iv tried everything since made a fool of myself, gone to far to try and change her mind and am blocked and deleted on everything and im gutted. She told me not to contact her It was her bday in December and i didn know what to do but at that point i wasnt blocked so i did on the evening text her happy birthday and hope she had had nice day to which i got a sarcastic message saying her day had been fantastic and thanking me for a card, explaining even her daughters dad had got her a card and perfume. I was gutted because i wanted to but didn because she had told me to leave her alone. Since then i was blocked and have had no contact to and have found out now that she immediately got back with her child father. Now the bit I cnt get m head around is they hadnt been together for well over 3 years, and he had physically abused her and even hit her daughter in one incident trying to get to her. There was a restraining order in place which ended mid way through last year she had fought him for two years not to see there daughter but now has got back together with him. Like nothing happened in the past and in fact started to say they she was scared of me and he was protecting her from me? I cant understand her behaviour, I understand its over but going back to that absolutely broke me?!
Wow - she seems very confused
But you seem very clear in that she is not thinking right.
Most likely she will come back. Use this time to get a clear vision on this relationship: instead of you two working out your differences with help, she runs back to the very person you both wanted out of your lives. That says something about her and her values, and what she thinks about you.
Do you have an elder male family friend or relative you can talk to about this - or a male counselor to help you sort out what's going on?
My friend, she may have done you a BIG favor by leaving. After all, why would you want anything from her now?
"and have found out now that she immediately got back with her child father. "
If you're over an ex, the thought of suddenly getting back with them makes you think and feel this: EW, no pigging way! So if she didn't feel that way - what does that tell you?
'Not Ready & Available' Alert!
Bet you any money you like he's been working on her behind-scenes, having Hoovered her - or cranked up the Hoovering - once he could tell, via you two having reached the "ta-daa!" 2-year mark (the gateway point to longer-term committal), that she actually *was* capable of moving on to pastures new. Their egos can't take that so they have to 'win' against you, the new love, using her as their tool and proving they're still the great and powerful Oz when it comes to massive control and influence over their puppet. But what you did is called The Silent Treatment and is one of the main weapons in a Narcissistic Abuser's toolbelt (uh-oh).
Who taught you that that's what you do or are 'allowed' to do in response to a fight or run of fight-ettes?
I imagine his campaign was greatly helped by your having given her the idea via this silent treatment-ing, that the devil she already knows is preferable to 'one' she doesn't.
If you starve someone when they already started out hungry (due to the fight period), whereby they're desperate, and there's an alternative source of food sat on a plate, going, Eat-me-Eat-me!!!, then... (logical, captain).
She's a bit 'messy' if she ordered not to contact and then complained at the fact you 'obeyed orders' ("make yer mind up, luv?!"). OR WAS THAT MOVING OF GOALPOSTS YOU WEREN'T EVEN AWARE EXISTED, JUST HER BRILLIANT EXCUSE for her 'weakness' and inability to feel okay on her own?
Why were you giving 'her' time to other people and putting her last in the queue? Had you always done this 'rescuing', and was it something she was aware of prior to climbing into the Love Boat with you? Or was this call for X much attention a new development? Alternatively, was she apt to want to commandeer all of your attention despite having long seemed accepting of that as part of what makes you You?
Who moved the attention-giving or -expecting goalposts, in other words?
Go google Narcissistic Ex-Husband/Partner and Hoovering and you'll see what he'll have been up to all this time, behind your back, subtly-but-insidiously or otherwise. Keeping or reinserting his hooks in her from time to time so that she couldn't bond properly with you nor detach sufficiently (to EW! point) from him. That's 'how come'. It's not personal at all (hell, not even their relationship is personal!). But, still being under his spell - i.e. still 'drunk' enough that he can so easily slip the Rose-tinteds back onto her face - does prove SHE IS NOT READY TO BE WITH YOU OR ANYONE NEW (and least of all him - OMG, is she in for even worse treatment after a Honeymoon-ette or what!). Not until she's finally taken *enough* sh*t and hence extricated herself completely and permanently from his 'forcefield'. Because until then - this was always on the cards and isn't at all uncommon of a victim of psychological abuse who's been Trauma Bonded (google). It's not a state of mind to be under-estimated. As you'll see as you surf.
Thankyou for your reply i have looked at what you said and it all loooks as though you probably right! Gutted!
Hi again, GAZDW85. Sorry for the delay.
How are you at this point? Coping? Do you want to stay and 'talk out the toxins' with us?
Toxins? Im unsure exactly what you mean sorry. Its done she made her decision but your insight did help very much.
By Toxins, I meant any negative thinking or feeling as a result of this betrayal.
Or are you still surfing and learning?
I have been doing alot of surfing and I still don’t understand the logic of going back to tha situation 4 years later but I understand that it was her choice abd obviously thinks hes changed snd never really had the feelings she said she had for me because to switch emotions off and twist everything around onto someone who you supposedly love Isnt really logical well in my head. Unless she had some sort od underlying issues, she is a very cold person who can immediately switch off feelings. The more I read the more is felt like she maybe has slightest tendency to bpd. It would certainly explain her attitude etc.
Sorry, GAZ, but as you'll learn if you keep delving - when it comes to Cluster Bs, three weeks does not equate to 'a lot' of surfing, in fact it's merely scratching the surface, if that. Trust me, when you're talking Nonsensical and Utterly But Oh-So-SUBTLY (and distinctly Butterly) semi-insane on-legs behind closed doors, you need to surf a lot longer than that.
And I do mean 'need'. Because you, albeit second-handedly, emotionally by proxy, have now, I'm sorry to say (or not, since it makes one considerably stronger than otherwise) become one of many, many victims of Narcissistic Abuse. (You've got your first-hand victims, your second-, your third-, your fourth-....the ripples are very far-reaching.)
Did that even occur to you?
But you've got me to give you a leg-up, you lucky unlucky thing. So try this by industry-endorsed & adopted, top lay expert, Shahida Arabi on Huffington Post (although she has her own site + plenty of books out):
[my personalising/customising parentheses]
"Society needs to understand that abuse has complex effects on the survivor and that the bond a survivor develops with his or her abuser, as well as a fear of retaliation, can sometimes prevent them from coming forward [or from staying away]. That doesn’t mean that the survivor in question is exaggerating the abuse he or she went through when he or she finally comes clean – in fact, it may be that they are finally coming to terms with the truth for the first time. [...on which note, due to the lengthy 2 year (supposed) delay - I personally suspect that a part of why she's gone back to him is to see if she can either 'beat him' or 'finally get him properly pegged'.]
Lawyers, judges, police officers as well as friends and family members need to take note that asking a survivor why he or she stayed so long, or insinuating that the abuse wasn’t truly “violent” because it was emotional abuse can be retraumatizing and incredibly invalidating. The legal system also needs to understand why victims may sometimes go back to their abusers; stalking and harassing behavior is common after the ending of a relationship with a malignant narcissist, especially if the victim happened to “discard” the narcissist first.
This is also known as “hoovering” and it includes any and all attempts the abusive partner uses to reestablish contact with their former victims. Many victims are unfortunately “hoovered” back into the relationship, only to experience an even more horrific discard or more intense trauma than before. The bond between abuser and victim is difficult to break, but that does not make the abuse any less legitimate.
[Repeat: the bond between abuser and victim is difficult to break. It's not a nice-feeling bond. But it's a super-strong bond and pull, nonetheless.]
The trauma of chronic psychological warfare has long-term effects on the brain and diminishes a survivor’s sense of self-worth and reality; it doesn’t help that the abuser also works very hard to keep the victim in their place and gaslights them into believing that what they are experiencing isn’t real [which they likewise can convincingly persuade the victim is the case as concerns their new relationship - i.e. you]. It takes a great deal of courage for a survivor to come forward, so the focus and emphasis should not be on the actions of the traumatized victim, but rather the actions of their perpetrators."
And 'ditto' Angie Atkinson @ QueenBeing (who enjoyably talks as if friend-to-friend):
[again, my parentheses]
"Most narcissists will try to get your attention again after you've been separated - whether it's immediately or [NOTE!] after a period of time. And many survivors of narcissistic abuse admit that they get sucked back in from time to time.
Speaking of "sucked in," let's remember that narcissists love to "hoover" you when they feel like they've [NOTE!] lost control of you [or are in danger of losing]. Read more about hoovering here.
Oh, and let's not forget the love-bombing of it all.
What if you're the one trying to get back together with the narcissist?
Now, if you're the one trying to reconnect with the narcissist, you're probably experiencing a lot of emotional abuse right now - it's exactly the type of thing a narc enjoys. You'll repeatedly go through the devalue and discard phases, peppered with brief episodes of reprieve in which you almost catch a glimpse of the person you once knew.
If you think about it, the psychology of people who have been abused by narcissists is so altered by the abuse that their reactions to things that happen in their life aren't "normal," for lack of a better word.
What does that mean, exactly? Well, let me offer up a quick example using puppies. (Stick with me here, it's not as crazy as it sounds!)
The Happy Puppy and the Biting Puppy
Let's say that you were out to buy a puppy. You find a group of perfectly adorable pups and it's time to make the choice.
One puppy seems happy and friendly, and when you hold out your hand, he sniffs it and offers up a little doggie kiss.
Another puppy seems a bit stressed, to say the least, and when you hold out your hand, he bites your finger, drawing blood in the shape of his tiny little puppy teeth.
A "normal" response would be to take the happy puppy home and never think of the biting puppy again, while a person who has experienced narcissistic abuse is more likely to keep going back to the biter and [NOTE!] hoping for different results.
The fact is that it's "normal" for us as humans to go toward pleasure and away from pain - after all, pain is a warning sign that something is WRONG. You feel me?
Along the same line, let's get back to those dogs for a moment.
Think about the stories you've heard about dogs who stay loyal to their owners who hurt them. Why would they do that?
It's because of programming - the training and conditioning that you instill into them, along with their need to look to their "pack leader" for guidance.
How is this relevant to your situation?
Well, the fact is that if you're going to voluntarily return to someone who has abused you, you've experienced a similar kind of conditioning. And sort of like the dog, or even like hostages who experience Stockholm syndrome [google!], you find that you become addicted to the need to please the narcissist, or the need to find out if he or she is okay, or even of the need to get some of his coveted "positive" attention, if that's what he's been depriving you of - those glimpses of what he once was. [Or get him in a (hah!) position where you can finally 'force' him to take his run of insults back.] This is what brings you back, at least on one level.
And, like the dog who is beaten, the narcissist uses [NOTE!] fear [OF THE NEW BOYFRIEND] to control you - and when you've gone no-contact or when you threaten to, the narcissist reaches deep into his manipulative toolbox and pulls out your biggest fear of all the fear of being utterly, desperately alone ["HE'LL LEAVE YOU, HE'S STARTED TO ALREADY, LOOK!, NOT GIVING YOU *NEARLY* THE ATTENTION *I* GAVE YOU!" blah-nerve-flicking-blah; this is a very common Narc script...they are overly competitive over *everything* against *anyone*].
So, in a way, you have to be able to recognize that the feeling of guilt, obligation and almost desperation that you experience by being away from the abuser, isn't real.
The Ugly Truth: Maybe You Keep Going Back Because You're Scared That the Narcissist Was Right
The bottom line, though is this: the reason you want that abusive jerk back, even though he put you through absolute hell, is because the pain of the idea of being ALONE, abandoned, helpless, worthless - that's so much worse, in your mind, than the actual abuse.
Sometimes, having someone who just seems to have all the "right" answers - someone who keeps you right on the edge of sanity - just feels like home, especially if you've been stuck in a toxic relationship for long.
And that, my friend, is where we all sort of figure out where our places are in this world - it's part of what makes us attractive to narcissists in the first place.
And what makes them attractive to US - they can sort of seem like what we've always wanted, our hero, our savior - that is, until we discover that they've been secretly consuming our souls, one bite at a time.
Before you know it, you're left spinning and feeling empty.
So how do you get over the need to keep going back to the narcissist?
You've got to change your mind. I know, it sounds simple. But if you change your mind and literally DECIDE that you don't need him, you'll eventually get there - even if you have to fake it a little at first.
Use the law of attraction to your advantage by employing a simple-to-remember mantra or affirmation that you repeat to yourself anytime you have feelings or thoughts that make you want to go back.
And, if you have to, create a little "narc-resistance" file - one where you write down or record your reasons for leaving - and staying away - and make sure you're very honest with yourself - after all, no one else needs to see it."
(This is me again: )
The beyond-control temptation- nay, COMPULSION to go back as a way to cease the uniquely agonising detachment as kicks in at a certain point along the grieving path (especially if stuck fast at that point) is just too compelling for most people. The abuse has to eventually outweigh and then squash, the urgent curiosity/need to know and/or ability to still feel any pleasure from their (ever briefer) 'Nice Side' antics. Depends on how good a head-job the Narc did on them over how long, plus whether they'd been of optimal health, strength of mind and body, confidence, self-intimacy and -assurance, etc., etc. to begin with at first meeting.
YOU try gritting your teeth and bearing it/resisting when you've not even got the oomph to grit full-stop.
But as for you: You've got to appreciate that obviously *someone* with influence in your life, growing up, did The Silent Treatment in front of you.
And enough times, sufficiently without compunction, with the victim seemingly (in non action-taking format) condoning it by NOT LEAVING, that you incorporated it into your package of "Normal" or "Acceptable Behaviour".
Because, that, GAZ, is what is known as being left with Narcissistic Fleas (or Narc Slime caught 'permanently' in your crevices).
Now appreciate that if you, even innocently and unwittingly, plonked on the table that and any other behaviour strongly associated with that of Narc abusers then you would have helped him to appear by comparison, more NORMAL, less abusive. So I repeat: The devil I know or the devil I don't? If she'd mentioned to him during, say, a sneaky phonecall or message of his, that you'd done that - he would have used that to remove your advantage, pull you down in her mind more to his level, and then 'say' - So we're both as good and bad as each other yet it's ME you love, really!
No. It was just he she were helplessly GLUED to. Diff/all the diff.
Plus there was probably additionally still the almighty pull of wanting her child to have a (hah!) normal upbringing and family life with her real father (noun, not verb).
Understand, now, why you must cut that 'taking Time-Out too far' behaviour right out, the next time you're in a relationship? Just tell it like it is: I'm sorry but I'm flooding and can't think, I need a break from this conversation, can we go to our separate spaces for 20 mins/an hour and then come back to the discussions table? AND THEN DO. If you need longer, say it wasn't long enough and ask for an extension. Or, Can we discuss this by email perhaps? There are 50 ways to 're-harmonise' with your lover and Silent Treating isn't one of them. Okay?
Not your fault, you weren't to know, but - there you have it.
So - vis a vis that aspect of her returning, i.e. 'staying', for the sake of her kiddie: what does that make that kiddie. Past You?
If relevant, these are the questions you need to ask yourself. Because this process of self-examining and being aware of what state you were in at the start of the relationship, just prior to being 'irreversibly' hooked, is precisely what de-sliming/de-flea-ing is. To succeed in your next relationship, assuming all the usual elements are present and correct, you need to be completely and utterly slime-free. Toxicity is toxicity/slime is slime. Even a speck can infect, negatively influence and ruin/destroy/rot. Particularly if you're BOTH sporting slime. Which, going by the above, you were.
Or maybe you weren't. ??? I'll wait for *you* to say. Because here's the thing, going on what you said about her being able to (unnaturally) switch instantly from warm to sub-zero:
Although two equal Narcs can't have a relationship of any substance whatsoever (- think two people with nothing to talk about and transpose that onto two people with no excitement or passion, etc., to borrow then steal, other than insanely high levels of envy, contempt, schadenfreud and other negatives) because there are no heartstrings on either - these Cluster Bs can, however, tacitly collude and cooperate with one another in myraid ways or 'team up' to exploit the other. Particularly if they out-rank them. So, although less common - you can get a *Covert* (i.e. smoothly subtle) Malignant Psychopath or (almost equivalent) Malignant Narcissist - both Cluster Bs - deliberately 'relationshiping-up' with an *Overt* (more in-yer-face obvious) in order to achieve whatever own secret agenda and/or hide behind the underling in order to look okay/healthy in comparison, where otherwise would present as bad as they really are. And whatever other gains and benefits. (Think Beavis & Butthead or the two serial killers, The Gentleman Caller + Casanova, in the film Kiss The Girls, starring Ashley Judd and Morgan Freeman.)
But only you'd know that...from how well or badly she treated you *overall*, when you stand back and examine the entire relationship as a whole.
What do you think?
Alternatively - Borderline disordered...
Could be. They get cross-mis-diagnosed A LOT, particularly female Narcs for BPDs and male BPDs for Narcs.
As I see it, Borderline PD is this: victim of Malig. Narc. victimised for *far* too long or incredibly intensively over a shorter period of time (drip-drip-drip versus SPLOSH) = Now I'm Semi-Insane Too! + And Not Just Addicted But...He's My Oxygen (despite mixed with Poisonous Gas).
INCHES away from becoming converted into a Narc themselves.
So I guess it would all depend on how long and how consistently and intensively she's been victimised in this way? Just him or parental, maybe? How long were they married?
But, basically, it's *not* logical, you're quite correct. Logic has nothing to do with it (- if only!). It's emotional thus primal. And when you're emotional/kept constantly emotional, you're not thinking straight or cleverly PLUS emotional prods twang and reignite old sore nerves/bad memories/issues. But, look - when you're (psycho-emotionally) Supaglued chest-to-chest with someone, meaning, can't get away, and, in between kissing and stroking you like you're a goddess/god in their eyes, they keep increasingly pinching, kicking, spitting, biting your face,... you do what you have to do or just whatever you *can* do to either not get assaulted or lessen the assaults or not end up worse-off (which is what they brainwash victims into believing will be the unavoidable inevitable if they leave them and stay left/not go back).
YOU try backing away increasingly until the Supaglue gives, taking your entire chest skin and surface flesh with it! It takes a strong man or woman to keep backing away, trust me. It's this: Short-Term Acute Agony versus Long-Term, Possibly Never-Ending, Chronic Pain. Dentist's drill versus Toothache.
In a nutshell - in the main, she went back to him, probably because she'd been brainwashed then, after too short a break, topped-up to where she believed she much preferred the taste of nectar riddled with drops of poison and acid, to a normal cup of unadulterated tea with 2 sugars...PLUS whatever other agendas, pullers and pressurers both mentioned above or not.
Does that help at all?