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Proposal ultimatum / am I overthinking / or in toxic relationship?

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Hi, So I've been in a relationship for 3.5 years. Upa and downs of course. Though for a while now I've been feeling trapped/ stressed, so been doing research and I don't think I am respected and maybe with someone with a narcissistic tendencies. I feel I have been love bombed and then screamed at. My needs have not been met for the last few years, loads of little things that I've asked for help with,asked for changes and it's future faking with promises that never came. 95% of the time she gets her way, I have been shut down, her mother barely acknowledges me as part of the relationship and tries to take over. I've been screamed at for not proposing multiple times in the past, due to working away, however I did agree by the end of the year after being given an ultimatum to do so or leave. So just before Christmas we had a hard conversation in which I said I am not ready to propose for a few reasons, I can't get over the way she has treated me in the past (not that I said this but I feel trauma bonded), all the empty promises. So agreed by the end of the year and did so on NYE ( after hours of panic shopping for a ring). Part of the discussion was that we didn't need to plan/ book anything for the wedding but it would progress the relationship and give a chance to fix and work through things. I'm now looking at a wedding venue 2 months prior to the agreed date to start looking and it's been only a month. Only a few things have been honoured that discussed, for example her helping to cook, this has been a on going issue as no matter how tired I am I still have to do it and haven't had help for years, she has cooked maybe 5 times since Nye which is more than the previous few months. She promised to not hold resentment for the ultimatum and that it took longer than she wanted for me to propose, though has thrown it out as a passive aggressive comment during a disagreement. I'm not perfect and there are things I need to work on too for example I need to validate feelings, however I shut down when screamed at and react. I really need some help as I am panicking about progressing with the wedding, but she will be crushed if I want to hold off and will most likely leave. I am very avoidant personality type, but feel like I am going through motions, and have major anxiety about this situation. Thank you in advance for any advice.

Proposal ultimatum / am I overthinking / or in toxic relationship?

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You never once mentioned your love for her in your post; you haven't indicated if you guys share values & goals & what attracted you to her in the first place? People in love always share with others what's good about their relationship even when they go pear shaped. Ask yourself just what keeps you with this woman? Is it her mother ignoring you? Is it the screaming at you & her immature demands? Do you like being 'kicked around' by a bullying individual who happens to be your partner of 3.5 years? & she will never work through your relationship issues if she causes them. Why would you race around to buy a ring & get married just to keep her happy when she's already knocked you down & trod on you repeatedly. You're either a glutton for punishment or you can't see the forest for the trees. Who cares if this woman is a narcissist or whatever, it's come to the stage now that your gut is screaming at you that your relationship IS a toxic farce because you let it be one. You have made the choice to be with someone who disrespects you badly & basically exploits you daily. Her promises to you mean bloody nothing because she's loyal to herself & no one else...no one. People like your partner will always find another poor soul to manipulate & control but you don't have to ruin your life by hanging around to cop more abuse. Stop your panicking & take control of your life because you deserve to be happy & you deserve to be respected as all of us do when in a loving & sharing relationship. Be kind to yourself...get out & never look back, ever.

Proposal ultimatum / am I overthinking / or in toxic relationship?

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Thank you for you're response. She does of course have good qualities,she really understands and helps my mental health and supports me a lot through that. She has finally taken on board some of what I said and I have seen a change, after I have proposed, which she kept saying "I'll do these things when you propose. I keep having severe panic attacks about all this and the wedding as we have now booked a venue, no money spent yet, but due tomorrow. I asked if we needed to book but she said it had to be there and on a specific date. I had a panic attack about the amount of money it would cost as I think it is too much, she is willing to spend more to have what she wants and is not forcing me to pay more necessary. We spoke earlier and she calmed me down but when I'm in my own head I panic and need to be convinced to go through with it. I can't sleep, I can't break her heart but I cannot get over the numb feeling and the length of time my needs where not met before I had to propose to get her to listen. I don't know what to do we can pay a deposit and gives me a week to seek professional help. Through cognitive behaviour therapy. More recently she has said she doesn't want me talking about the relationship outside of It like to friends and stuff as they may have a bias, though she also doesn't talk outside the relationship to be fair, I have convinced her that I need to be able to do that, because of my mental health problems I need to ask other couples questions and make sure it's not me making mountains out of mole hills. I think you are right that my guy is telling me something, but I am racked with guilt. Thank you

Proposal ultimatum / am I overthinking / or in toxic relationship?

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'when someone shows you who they really are, you best believe them'... is some of the finest advice on offer. Listen to your gut, it's talking to you & forget your guilt which has come from your partner screaming at you for 3.5 years about not meeting her standards. You need to ask yourself just what values & standards you guys share & what about goals? Do you really want & need to get married to a woman who controls you? Of course she doesn't want you talking to others because she wants to isolate you from your friends etc - it's typical behaviour of a controller.

Proposal ultimatum / am I overthinking / or in toxic relationship?

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Agree entirely, and - "I'll do these things when you propose." Woah. Yes, that is Narcissistic thinking, and to a fairly concerning degree. Twisted a full 180 Degrees. A normal-healthy would see it as the opposite: My partner has this/that complaint, whilst I have this/that about him - let's both fix and elevate the relationship thus put the willingness back in. Whereas, SHE sees it this way: I'm not going to cease beh<ving in ways that actually kick the love out of you, you have to just pretend I haven't and commit to me anyway, whilst ceasing irritating me by being you and what comes naturally. See it? It won't get better. It never gets better. It gets worse and worse. So - NOOOO, would be my advice. Why would ANYONE want to commit to that pervasive pattern of abusive treatment in their life? So WHAT if she has good days? They all do. But after a while (drip-drip), the bad chasmically outweighs the good and you feel nothing but hated and held in contempt, making it the opposite of a love relationship. Right now, though (because your emotions have a lot of catching up to do), I'd be insisting on couples counselling first. Just to see if she cooperated or managed to gaslight the therapist.

Proposal ultimatum / am I overthinking / or in toxic relationship?

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And anyway - what kind of woman would want to have to pressgang her partner into marrying her? Think about what it says on BOTH sides. Normal, healthy women wouldn't. But then, normal-healthy women wouldn't kick the love out of you in the first place; they'd 99% keep cuddling it into you.

Proposal ultimatum / am I overthinking / or in toxic relationship?

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PS: The male Narcs or overly narcissistic males scream at you as well. Sooo ridiculous and inappropriate and yet at the same time, so disturbing, so 'unreal'. Yeesh, don't get me started.

Proposal ultimatum / am I overthinking / or in toxic relationship?

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Here's something important and often overlooked, though: Let's say they cause an argument, which they make as traumatic for you as possible - every other Saturday night. Aww, that's not so baaad? Yes it is. It is when you remember to take into account that after a traumatic "argument" you can find it takes you a whole week to recover. NOW do the Maths. On behalf of myself and all other past victim-survivors: PLEASE don't marry her. Ok?

Proposal ultimatum / am I overthinking / or in toxic relationship?

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Hi all, Thank you for the advice. I am giving it a chance and have booked a venue and am starting to pay towards the wedding. We do not have to pay much until April, so if things slip back into normal behaviour then I will have to call it I think. I have opened up a lot more and she has managed to calm me down and reassure me on the costs and that it doesn't have to be 50/50 that if she wants it to be more expensive then she will pay more towards it. I have given it a chance and myself some time to fully reflect on my decision and the relationship. Though I can't help but think you are exactly saying what my gut is telling me. I have been researching this sort of thing and have come across both sides of the arguments, apparently most marriages start with an ultimatum, but they also often build resentment. Thanks again for the help.

Proposal ultimatum / am I overthinking / or in toxic relationship?

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Does she normally follow-through with doing what she said she'd do? I thought one of the major problems is that she moreover, consistently doesn't. The real reason you're giving it another chance is because it feels too daunting and difficult to end it, so soon as all this, when you've only too recently started waking.up and actually realising (from your tolerance bucket having overflowed and the noise jolted you). On average, it takes the victim-partner of an abusive Narcissist seven whole times to leave AND STAY LEFT. Narcs don't end it with you. You must have wondered to yourself: How come if she hates me so much - or, put it this way - CAN hate me so much AND so frequently, she doesn't end our relationship....why does she go further and try to talk me out of it whenever I feel I've 'had it'? Have you researched that bit? They can hate you secretly all, or even just more than half, the time. But that won't make them end it. Because they still need you (google Primary Supply) for whatever perks, bonuses, conveniences, favours, unwitting manipulation-/impressions-management tool (e.g. respectability by-association), for-free. It doesn't bother them if they hate you. They don't care, they just want to feel superior to you and use you, and take their ever-self-generating bad/weird moods out on you as their personal dumping-ground/toxins toilet. (BTW, what does she get for-free because of you? Or alternatively, if she's a straight Covert, what financial dependence has she allowed you to grow on her or, even encouraged, whereby now if you do leave you'll be the one left worse-off?) So to-date, how many times, do you think, have you felt you actually wanted to end it? But, saying that: I do get that you're still under her and the 'relationship's' influence as keeps you in Cognitive Dissonance (she loves me, she loves me not, she hates me, no, it's fine she loves me...). It's very bad for your brain, though, so I'm glad you're reapproaching this last chance saloon, wearing your white coat, clipboard and pen....putting her on probation and watching her like a ruddy hawk for one more distinctly Narcy move. And meanwhile, you get to buy yourself time to keep getting your head around all of this - frankly, truthfully - MADNESS...that shouldn't exist. Good on ya, that's excellent thinking and shows you're not "too soft" or any of that crap. Just dizzy (reminds me: google Narcissist Victim - F.O.G). Keep studying. Also research about how healthy, mature (rational) adults do things, including would never dream of doing/behaving. There will be a deeper-down, contributory factor as to why you're in two minds over ending this 'relationship', though. Feeling like you had to pick a bit beneath you because X. It can be as simple as, Because I'm a smoker. Or because I've got a big scar on my bum. Anything. It can even be, too many toxics having told you you were a shite bf and you concluding that they can't all be wrong, despite they were over-demanding, controlling wotsits as well. Have a thinkipoos just in-case there's something down there hiding from you...maybe even from past treatment and attitudes, like schoolfriends...siblings... (PS: If you're not wanting to reply again just yet, just post each month to say Hi or give a quite update/status report in order to keep this thread active for if/when you need it again. Doing so will top-up your confidence majorly as you rememmber that you have "secret weapons/shields" at your disposal. Like an Emergency Call Button.

Proposal ultimatum / am I overthinking / or in toxic relationship?

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Trouble is, though: what if she manages to keep her best (or angel) foot foward until the "I Do" and then suddenly feels finally safe and cocky to let it all hang out? I must admit, if it were me, I'd be the one ultimatum-ing (my right, through not being the childishly uncooperative trouble-maker and unfair/dirty fighter). I'd be saying, I clearly am not quite ready to get married per se so I'm going to need to delay the date by 6 months/whatever. I mean - if a couple are planning to spend the rest of their days together, and just want to be 'in the zone' rather than not, then, where's the fire anyway, what difference will another piddly 6 months make, compared to XX decades, day-in-day-out? A normal-healthy, non-overly narcissistic or actual NPD would rather you WERE ready than risk you blurting, I Don't, at the alter, just for the sake of another 6 piddly months of investment. One with insufficient investment, however, would be off. Because rushing the relationship, rushing intimacy via mostly just intensity/drama, hurriedly faking a bond from you to them, and basically rushing you all the way to the alter, is the biggest hallmark there is that you've got a malignant whose full a*se-spillage you simply have yet to see. If you can't manage this, then, you're going to have to try to set her hidden tests and challenges, to see what you get back and how normal/rational/healthy it is, or whether indicative of NPD traits and behaviours according to the expert websites. Getting married is easy. Getting out of one, not so much. But to a narc/Narc? Hell-on-a-stick. And that's if you even manage it. Those that do escape for-good are actually quite rare, still. And the poorer people are getting, thanks to Brexit/Covid/the world economic crisis, the harder it's getting. At least read up on how to handle a narcissistic spouse and see what you'd be signing-up for, yeh? Good luck, Soldier! (He's going over again). ;)

Proposal ultimatum / am I overthinking / or in toxic relationship?

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I'm not sure what demographic that statistic was based on - do you have the link? Meanwhile, I found this for you (and any lurkers in your same boat..... - lots, I imagine, if your statistic reference is up-to-date, jeez... what happened to 'start as you mean to go on', maturity, commonsense, hashing-out beliefs and rules even before getting engaged, all of that?, yeesh): ((my double-brackets and asterisks)) _____________________________________________________________________________________ https://www.huffpost.com/entry/do-marriage-ultimatums-work_n_5bc6789be4b0d38b5872bde0 Do Marriage Ultimatums Actually Work? Experts Weigh In. Telling your partner, "If we're not engaged by this date, we're done," might work. But is that really how you want to start your marriage? Last year, “Melanie” (not her real name) received a marriage proposal from “Jeff,” her boyfriend of seven years, that came with an ultimatum. Jeff had recently cheated on Melanie and then broken things off with her, but the two kept in contact because they had a big trip planned together the following month. Days before the trip, seemingly out of nowhere, Jeff popped the question to Melanie and gave her two choices: get married or cut off contact forever. Melanie told him she needed to think about it, especially given the recent rockiness in their relationship. “The way he did it made me feel so trapped,” she told HuffPost. “It made me cry inconsolably any time I was alone because he only gave me two options: marry him or not even be friends anymore. And he had been my best friend for nearly 20 years at this point.” For several months, they tried to make things work but ultimately called it quits earlier this year after Jeff became more and more controlling. Of course, not everyone who proposes a marriage ultimatum ― “If we’re not engaged or married by X date, we’re done” ― does so in such a blatantly manipulative manner. Some people are frustrated by a lack of forward momentum in the relationship and may feel that an ultimatum is their only choice (Spoiler alert: It’s not). Some people lack healthy communication skills and don’t know how else to get their point across. “Generally, ultimatums don’t yield a good outcome, but every situation is different,” psychologist and dating coach Samantha Rodman said. We asked marriage experts to explain why people issue marriage ultimatums, why they don’t typically work as intended and what to do instead. Why People Issue Marriage Ultimatums People who present their partner with a marriage ultimatum may do so in a misguided attempt to have their needs met in the relationship. They are caught between their desire to get married and their partner’s need for more time. But the way they go about it is what makes it problematic. “I think they want to respect their partner’s cold feet and want to give them the gift of time to make their decision,” psychologist Ryan Howes said. “But they also want to set a boundary to respect their own needs, so they set a date.” There may also be another more subconscious reason, according to Howes. Essentially, the person giving the ultimatum may be trying to avoid taking responsibility for their own life choices by giving all the decision-making power to their partner. “They want their partner to decide whether or not to propose because they haven’t taken stock of their own feelings about the relationship,” Howes said. In other words, the ultimatum comes from a place of doubt and forfeits the ultimatum-giver’s own agency. “The truly empowered person is aware of what they want and is able to ask for it,” Howes said. “This is the riskier option, but the more powerful one.” “Do you want to get married? Then how about telling your partner you’d like to get married and asking them what they want?” Howes suggested. “If they say no, or not right now, then the decision lies with you to stay or leave, knowing that the proposal may come in six months, or maybe never.” “The truly empowered person is aware of what they want and is able to ask for it,” Howes said. “This is the riskier option, but the more powerful one.” “Do you want to get married? Then how about telling your partner you’d like to get married and asking them what they want?” Howes suggested. “If they say no, or not right now, then the decision lies with you to stay or leave, knowing that the proposal may come in six months, or maybe never.” Then ask yourself if you’re willing to stick it out or not. “Do you want to wait? Yes? Then wait, and that’s your choice,” Howes said. “Do you want to leave and find someone else who is more certain? Then do that. Pushing your partner to make a decision is a way to sidestep your own power and decisiveness.” Why Ultimatums Don’t Work (At Least Not Well) Let’s say you tell your S.O. that if he or she doesn’t propose by next summer, you’re going to find someone who will. Hey, you might even scare or bully your partner into actually doing it. But is that really the way you want to start the next chapter of your relationship? “Nobody wants to feel threatened,” Rodman said. “However, again, if you are genuinely stating your boundaries and intentions, e.g. you want to get married before you’re 30 or you’re losing interest because of no marriage, then share those feelings with your partner.” And if your partner says no? “Be prepared to walk,” Rodman said. *****“Don’t use it as a manipulation tactic.”***** ******Howes said that if you feel giving an ultimatum is your only option, consider it a big red flag in the relationship. Marriage is about a lifetime of joint decision-making, discussions, debates and compromises. This is only the first of many big decisions that lie ahead.****** “If you are thinking of the ultimate power play of an ultimatum at the beginning of the relationship, how might that play out later on?” Howes said. “What if you disagree about kids, careers, money management, parenting, savings, and wills and trusts? Might it be better to work on clear communication and compromise from the very beginning than kick things off with a power play?” ******One point to highlight: There’s a big difference between standing up for what you want or need in a relationship and issuing an ultimatum. No one is asking you to sacrifice what’s truly important to you (in this case, marriage) ― it’s all a matter of how you express your needs.***** “If someone feels that they will genuinely move on if they don’t get married, then that is a truthful and honest thing to share,” Rodman said. “The ultimatum should not be fake, a threat you trot out but don’t mean.” And know that even if your partner does end up proposing, there may be lingering feelings of bitterness afterward. No one enjoys being backed into a corner. “Sometimes, I see a client who experienced this in their dating life, and they usually end up resenting it after the fact,” Rodman said. What To Do Instead The proper way to broach the subject is straightforward: State your case (“I’d like to be engaged by 33 because I want to be married before we start having kids”) and then ask your partner how they feel about it, Howes said. Listen to what they have to say and then decide for yourself if you’re willing to wait or if you need to move on. “I think the only discussion to have is, ‘I’d like to get married, would you?’” Howes said. “And when you hear the response, you make your own decision. Waiting for the other to determine your future is disempowering.” Get those notions of a totally surprise fairytale proposal out of your head. Your future together is something that should be discussed at length before you even think about getting engaged. If you or your partner are truly on the fence about what the future of the relationship looks like, it might be worth going to couples counseling to suss out your true feelings. “I would hope that a proposal is only a ceremonial formality to celebrate, and that the serious discussions about compatibility and desire and the future have been ongoing for some time,” Howes said. _____________________________________________________________________________________ ...Yuh. About "Deciding": deciding something that big (quitting an investment) (because it's LOSING you wealth, so to speak) is easily said - and not too difficultly done, by those caught merely in a union of significant Incompatibility. A Fauxlationship, on the other hand, where one partner is toxic and it's imperceptibly yet steadily becoming like they can barely tolerate you most of the time but are determined to keep keeping you in the game and bit-by-increasing-bit, SHOEHORNING, including (with your Malignant Coverts), HENPECKING you into the shape of person they actually want (i.e. a Submissive or downright Slave, Sychophant who dare not be anything less than utterly perfect in every single way thinkable, i.e. "Walking On Eggshells") - or just attacking you for daring to nicely state a request/complaint - this really erodes your confidence thus ability to make an at-the-time, *seemingly* too scary, potentally life-altering decision. So does the continuing pecking/tearing strips attempts:...Don't think that, don't do that, don't say that, don't ask me to do MY share of duties, "or else"....on and on and on. Even, I bet you're cheating on me!, when they know darn well you take pride in the fact you'd rather stick pins in your eyes.... (If you've THAT much to keep criticising me over, then clearly I'm not your One. And i certainly don't want to be yours or anyone's Constant Irritant that you "have to" put up with, when there are and have been too many others in my life that liked me just the way I am. So, off you go, then. Keys, please. :p) (Oh, you watch them panic and backpedal for all their worth when you try to say that pure logical! Out comes the, I didn't mean its...little realising that, that they could SAY AND GO TOO FAR, TOO OFTEN, AND EXPECT NO CONSEQUENCE, AND FEEL GREAT WHILE YOU FEEL DREADFUL, and too exhausted to talk any more, IS PRECISELY YOUR TOP PROBLEM WITH THEM, AARGH. It is SO GALLING when they're not fit to criticise you because they know nothing PLUS constantly do the bloody same type of thing themselves...oh, the gross hypocrisy...) The huge bond isn't any such thing. It's just your regular Addiction, this case, not to alcohol or Class A substances, but to the "trauma bonding with intermittent reinforcement (google), aka "narcissistic cycle of abuse"....lovely, horrid, lovely, horrid, sane, whacko, sane, whacko....repeat, repeat, repeat...one extreme to the other and in between time, drip-drip-chip-chip-peck-peck (Covert shaping and puppeteering). Plus the seemingly massive (rushed) investment and depth of involvement. And other obstructions and off-putters. You just have to do NPD Victim-style of Cold Turkey, and you're out and away. Aka No Contact...although I prefer to call it Zero Contact because then no sneaky victims can stretch the brief (yeah, but it was just a Facebook Like, I didn't saaay anything...that kind of nonsense). But the decider (once your head has had enough time to stop spinning and you realise the 'fear' of staying has become outweighed by that of leaving, because she's gone back on every promise or left everything barely done or started - aka you've met Your Line In The Sand - aka Abuse-Tolerance Bucket finally overflows) is this: Get out now/asap while it's even still do-able, grieve to get over them, which I've done before and didn't kill me -VERSUS- stay feeling this unloved, not-worth-valuing, abused, screeched at, too much of the time as devolves into all of the time, until my premature, dying day. No (short-term) Pain - No (long-term) Gain. Just know ahead - for that requisite confidence-boost - that you CAN do this. Getting away from someone abusive is never, ever, ever A Bad Move, A Regrettable Move, a Regretted Move. It's always the 'having stayed when I had my chance to get out' bit that they regret.)) I hope this is helping you to detach just the right amount, ergo, will feel less scared to call it quits if need be, ready for your Spocky observational experiment. And I want you to look back on people you used to look up to because they were admirable and empathetic....all those great, adult qualities. And compare her to them. You need to see or feel a contrast. This is another reason why they isolate you. With them now in your face all hours, this keeps you in a bubble and kind of echo chamber, whereby your mind starts to accept atrocious behaviour as the New Normal. That's why I suggested you study more on NORMAL, HEALTHY partnerships between equal, properly-matured humans ¡ who know they can only ever be equal to any other human on the planet.

Proposal ultimatum / am I overthinking / or in toxic relationship?

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Thank you again for the help. I have tried looking into counselling but am struggling to find any quickly. People are starting to book rooms now so feel pressure is building into this before I've had a chance to get to grips with our conversation before Christmas and everything feels like it's moving pretty fast. I can't help keep watching negative YouTube videos, about bad signs or abuse/ narcissism, it feels as though it's making me overthink. I guess I'm still waiting to see what happens but now it will effect other people. Thank you

Proposal ultimatum / am I overthinking / or in toxic relationship?

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Yes, that's the problem: finding a counsellor in too little time. So that's not an option regarding. Let's recap: It's palpably obvious to all, ABCD, that you are not in a place where you should commit the rest of your life to this person. BECAUSE of the recent "invasion of the body snatchers" (her increasingly showing the real her (not very nice) under her Great Gal mask)....because you identify her and her behaviour as aligning with NPD. You have to delay it NOW. Any more waiting and delaying will make everything so much worse. But that is no match for doing the honourable thing and deciding against...because your partner has changed too much from the person you WOULD have married. She's spoiled it. Not you. I had a similar, ridiculous statement from an ex-Narc. "Yooou said you wanted me holding your hand on your deathbed!". Answer: Yes. And then you went and ruined it all by changing personality on me....Shoulda thoughta that, shouldn't you - just count yourself lucky I can't report you to Advertising Standards! If she is not as advertised and test-driven, then you do not buy the lemon. I KNOW how it feels. It's incredibly daunting. You're going to need to have a long talk with your parents and get their help. This is one one nof those situations where, no matter how old one is, you need your mam and dad. They'll walk you through it all, I'm sure. Is that an option? Know this: In this situaton and context - being about to sign your life away to not just the wrong woman but the wrong type of human being : 'I'm Not Sure' is No, not Yes or Maybe. You DO NOT want to marry her. But you're scared you're about to set a bomb off. It won't. It happens a lot. (Rational) people (the type you'd want to keep) understand. And anyway, you can still do it in two sets of steps: if you insist the wedding be merely put on hold until you've visited a counsellor, then all the suppliers/caterers can be delayed (assuming you call them very soon, give them ample notice). If when you tell her, she kicks up a fuss (guaranteed), give her Option 2: we cancel it altogether. All it takes is saying it and feeling determined that it is your RIGHT to get your way on this. One Yes out of a panel of two is not a passed vote, it's a No. BOTH have to say yes. Also, make a point to ask her what her hurry is? And let her see you writing down her answer. Get HER worried and having to bend over. It's soo easy, honestly. You just have to have HAD IT! She obviously has some pressing need to get hitched, this case to you. She won't want the whole relationship ended, no way. She'll roll over. When she does - you KEEP that position of yours. Because the truth is this: without medication, the only way to manage a Narc is to DOMINATE ^THEM*. They don't mind that - they grew up with that. All they can do is Master or Slave. (You want and should expect, Equal Partners.) So it's one of their comfort zones. You can't do that forever though, it's exhausting and your life goes to sh*t. You need to watch Jo Frost Supernanny on YouTube - toddler training. Exact same principle. They push-and-push-and-push against the new (adult-sensible) rules and dynamic to get you to fold, exhausted, so they can reinstate the old regime. So you can't give them an INCH or they WILL take it. You have ALL the power. You just need to see how serious a mistake you'd be making. And SOD what anyone else thinks - this is YOUR life! They're not the ones would have to share a bloody house and bed with her, day-in-day-out, getting screeched at (and worse ny then). You don't want to end up a Battered Husband, mate, you really don't. It's too mind-ucking, especially for blokes. Anyway, we're still here for you if and for as long as you need us.

Proposal ultimatum / am I overthinking / or in toxic relationship?

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PS: Don't worry, you're not over-thinking. It's just your brain is very overloaded at the mo, there's not enough room to mentally multi-task. Try to sleep more, because your mental workings-out will get done for you. ...Just to cheer you up a bit - Reminds me of a joke: Confucius say, 'He who go to bed wiv big ploblem rill rake up in morning wiv solution in-hand'. (haha, sorry - gnaaaarf)

Proposal ultimatum / am I overthinking / or in toxic relationship?

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ALSO...it's clear she's a typical Narc - materialistic, hence wanting a flashy wedding (it's more sensible to save it to live on these days, and make it a Greek style wedding where guests just pin money to your suit and dress, rather than give you toasters and what-not, but anyway). Know Thy Patient. She'll be bribe-able. Use it or lose it. "I'll make you a deal. (and say it like this) After we've had a course of counselling - on the big day, I will pay for X (horse-drawn carriage?...limo?...something she's wanted for years (ie. five minutes)?" Can you think of anything? You CAN'T be your normal Honest self with a Narc. That's how they get ya! Lie and Future-Fake your pants off! (That's an order, soldier.) Seriously, all those that didn't manage to escape (and are even MORE miserable today!), it's because they refused to lie, even to a low-down, dirty type of narc. GET OVER YOURSELVES! :p Okay? Permission to Lie. :)

Proposal ultimatum / am I overthinking / or in toxic relationship?

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But, SURELY if you told your parents, they'd react, like, 'Jesus Christ - wish you'd told us earlier - no WAY can you go ahead! Thank GOD you told us in-time, though. Quick, I'll phone the florist, you phone the vicar, your dad can phone the (etc)!'. Doing The Right Thing in pulling-out for reasons of decency (conscientiousness) is bloody admirable. Ac-tually. And it wasn't even your decision, anyway. Ac-tually. And yeah, people could say: she's just another person, why would you have been too scared to speak your mind? We know, don't we. BECAUSE SHE'S A MON-STEEEEEEEEEEER WHO PLANS ON DRAGGING ME DOWN TO HEEEEELL!!! *ACTUALLY*.

Proposal ultimatum / am I overthinking / or in toxic relationship?

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Do you remember the first time you jumped off the highest diving-board at your local swimming-pool? You didn't have the luxury of time to ready yourself there, either, did you. You had to just go, ONE, TWO, THREE - JUMP! And afterwards, you felt SOOOOO MUCH BETTER! And then you thought: Tsk...what was I so worried about? Do you remember? The fear you feel is just a primitive reflex, not a Commentator, trying to tell you NOT to delay/pull out. The MINUTE you delay/cancel, you'll feel relief like you've never felt before! And you don't even have to feel guilty because - it wasn't YOU who changed for the intolerably worse, beyond all early-days recognition. Say it with me: SHE SHOULDA THOUGHTA THAT before she tricked her way into your heart. This is her consequence, not yours. But your opportunity. To save your own life.

Proposal ultimatum / am I overthinking / or in toxic relationship?

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Can`t stay away, look. Am taking on your pressure with you (tick-bloody-tock). So I've found you two magic pills. These two films, watched in order, will get your mind deciding and feeling full confidence in your, this time, very firm conviction...like this: 'No/Not Yet means No/Not Yet, and that is that. All I'm doing is being the realistic, sensible one for both of us - since you seem to live in some sort of Disney Film (despite we know that's not her problem, just her pretense, her cover-impression of a normal girlie-girlie) - so, you can hate me now but thank me later...I don't mind, I can wait'. (-haha, reference to delaying intended) See how at the same time, you're Future-Faking? - or giving yourself a get-out clause, if you prefer? You're saying, I'm not going anywhere, I just want things smoother and neater and a counsellor will be more than capable of showing us how...and then we'll be all snuggly and happy again, yay. And you're also getting to get BACK some denied ground... getting to re-start and re-do a large part of the bonding path over again, this time, slowly, leisurely, so that you can notice/hear/see EVERY malintentious act or attempt to get a leash around your neck again (stupid, arrogant little cow - doesn't she know as a man you could FAR more likely kill her, and it's only your gentlemanly self-containment that stands in your way? Soooooo arrogant. Seriously. That's why you mustn't let her think she can dominate and push/pressure you. All she's allowed to do is take you or leave you as a straight-backed male, not force you to bend over backwards until you end up as crippled as she secretly is. (Oh, yeah, she wants you to be a MINI-Her!) But anyway... ...Or even - Go ahead, punk, make my day. (ref Clint Eastwood). I'm telling you - if you are determined enough, she'll roll over. Like a beeping kitten. It'll be her manipulation tactic of a response, sure. But who cares. If as the only one of the pair of you who IS sane, sensible, intelligent, pragmatic, AND sensitive, etc., enough, then it ONLY makes sense that you waste no time in taking control of that ship and chart a safe course. Or else it will crash. No marriage will work on these present bases even IF your intended were a normal-healthy rather than, screechy-dominator! If you pelt her with all the very best, most adult-mature, sensible, logical, above-average intelligent reasons why SHE should want the delay for counselling JUST AS MUCH AS YOU, but she still (albeit placidly) resists - WHAT'S MENTALLY WRONG WITH *HER*, THEN?! ANSWERS, PLEASE! So if she doesn't - YOU'VE GOT HER. You'll know for sure-sure-sure she IS what you fear she is/has, indelibly, within her. Ta-daaaaaa! Good, aren't I. ;) It's called, been to La-La-Land Hell & Back. I would never suggest anything I hadn't already test-driven a number of times, successfully, myself. So......Do yourself a massive favour and watch these two films - this weekend preferably. And then let me know if you want tips for calmly-intimidating body lingo...for coming over as masterful and deadly serious ("Don' push meeee!") (name the film!). Let's give her someone SHE's never seen before, shall we? Let's shock HER for a change. Again, it's so piss-easy, you'll kick yourself. You won't adopt that position permanently though...it's not you, you're sane, well-intentioned and fair-minded, and two, as I say, it's exhausting/life's too short and doesn't have to be that complicated, upsetting and downright whacko. So at SOME point, you'll have to hand steering-wheel duty to her again (you have to sleep) and suffer the crud again/put your progress back OR finally decide to get off at the next port (and she can crash on her own or drag some other poor sap on-board). But let's not get ahead of ourselves. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=g-HeV8Z6iXc (Four Weddings And A Funeral) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=G_7MJQnk4M8 (Shirley Valentine) And don't groan. One, underneath the 'female-friendly' surface stuff - these are bloody amazing, sooo impactful - especially for someone in your nightmare-ish position - and two, they're surprisingly great FUN! They're basically about the Dos & Don'ts when it comes to marrying. Actual life-changers. Honestly, they should instantly sort your mind out for you, while you just lay back and munch popcorn. You might need a long sleep afterwards though - from all the mental ephiphany-ettes ("ping...ping-ping-ping!...."). You might even find you have the giant urge to watch them all over again. Because, closely enough, they're about you. Right now and then decades later if despite feeling the way you feel, you proceed. Forgot to mention: Re the guests who've booked already. AWW, BOO-HOO. Why - what? Would they rather you enter a misery-making marriage, just so's not to inconvenience them a bit? Yeah, they might forfeit a booking-fee ("ermagheerd - end of the wuld!"), but they can take your wedding present back. Who cares, anyway. The rest of your life makes their inconvenience look like NOTHING. Who would or could be so petty to hold it against you? I tell you...Anyone who failed to say, 'Woah, though...you can't say the lad doesn't have iron balls and integrity!', would ne showing themselves as unfit to lick your boots (and should hang out more with her). It'd be old news within a month, anyway.

Proposal ultimatum / am I overthinking / or in toxic relationship?

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Thanks again for the help. I have started counselling and making a list of good and bad about the relationship. I watched 4 weddings and I think I get the meaning ha. I'm just still trying to figure things out, though I keep seeing if you are not 100% then it should be no.

Proposal ultimatum / am I overthinking / or in toxic relationship?

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Heya, you're very welcome, still. :) Started counselling? Fantastic! Did you check whether s/he is au fait with NPD? Cannot WAIT to see her "Rap Sheet". It's a very powerful exercise, you'll find. "....F*ck!.....f*ckety-f*ckety-f*ck!...f*ckkkk-it!" (I won't say, name the film LOL) Not sure about the pairing between Scarlett and that 7ft cowboy, though - are you? Can't see it, meself. It's a good laugh, though, isn't it. (You might find you like Notting Hill...co-stars Rhyss whassisface, that Welsh comedy actor - hysterical). Yes, of course, you're still trying to figure things out. Their effect on us Normal-Healthy-Empaths is way vaster and deeper than we realise...until we break or separate from them. Their way of being plays havoc with our healthy programmes ("Error - Does Not Compute!"...."Danger - Corrupt Data-supplier!"). Yeah, sure, take it slowly. There literally is no pressure. Nothing that doesn't shrink to a pinhead when compared to going ahead with marrying when you feel it in your bones that you shouldn't. Remember: this isn't you, and your cold feet. This is about her having ...well - deteriorated. And too starkly in a short space of time, with (I presume?) no set of traumas and crises going on all around her. (That wouldn't be an excuse, either. But it least you could easily understand it.) RSvP, and do keep keeping us posted?

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