Breakup > Suffering Abuse

Over the past few months, I’ve read countless accounts of women (and men) who have been lied to or trapped in an abusive relationship for years if not decades, and it simply breaks my heart.

One woman was engaged to be married to Mr. Wonderful after dating him for two years. Then one day, a few weeks before the wedding, he announced he was moving to Asia to be with his wife. Yes. Already married this entire time. And he just up and abandoned the woman who had trusted him. Wonder how much his wife knows. My guess, nothing.

And he lives to destroy more lives. Without remorse. Without responsibility. Without consequences.

Another woman whose ex is a narcissist, spent 35 years with him before she discovered his pathology. Or, perhaps to be more accurate, she knew earlier, if by no other way than through the abuse and misery, but did not leave because she had children with this man and had built a life with him. She was committed to him, but he was committed only to himself and his needs. Ultimately he left her.

I remember my first relationship in college. I wasn’t happy after about the third month. He was neglectful and cruel, but I just couldn’t bring myself to leave him because I loved him too much. He was my first love and had no trouble bringing himself to leave me the following month. So short lived, but I was devastated nonetheless. Once I got over him, which took far longer than the relationship had been, of course, I saw that the best thing the man ever did for me was leave me. No doubt.

But we are unable to see that truth until we are far enough away from the abuser. Unfortunately, many people are never able to create that initial distance. We see ourselves as too connected to the person in question to even think about life without them, even if it diminishes our view of ourselves. This woman says that she sees herself like a “dog chained to his box.”

These words deeply hurt me. No one need ever feel like this, but the narcissist has an uncanny ability to inspire such unhealthy attachments while destroying their partner’s self-esteem. Before the narcissist’s victim knows what hit them, they are in too deep. This is why the narcissist is so very dangerous. And it is why every expert’s advice is to run in the opposite direction from a narcissist as quickly as possible.

Sadly, most people who fall in love with a narcissist don’t see the psychopath until it is far too late. If you think (even suspect) that you know a narcissist, please read up on it. It will help you let go. It certainly helped me.

Breakup, no matter how difficult it might be to accept, is far greater than suffering another day of abuse. This woman who had been with her narcissist for 35 years says it’s hard to move on after so long. After 35 years, she knows no life without him. But in order to heal her sense of self, she must behave as if her narcissist is dead. For the man she loved is…because he never existed. It’s a very hard reality to face. Hard enough after a few months. I can’t even begin to imagine the pain after 35 years.

The only thing I could tell her was that she had given him 35 years…did she want to give him another 5? Another 2? Another day? This woman is 60 years old and starting again. She’s watching her husband charm a new woman–fool a new woman–and she is unable to do anything about it. She cannot warn her, for who would believe it of such a handsome, charming man?

I say that’s your first clue: charming. Seriously.

If s/he’s charming and handsome and witty and seems oh-so-perfect.

Take a closer look.

That beautiful mask falls away far too quickly, and you see the heartless ogre beneath. By then, you’re hooked in deep.

Take a closer look.

Don’t be this woman in 35 years wondering what happened to your life.

Take a closer look.

The best thing he ever did for her is leave her. Now she just has to realize that. With the help and patience of friends, she will see it. I know I did.

~ by omgrey on April 20, 2011.

12 Responses to “Breakup > Suffering Abuse”

  1. Definitely a post that makes you think, and be more aware.

    • Indeed. I think we all want to believe the best in people, especially if we’re fond of them. Perhaps we’re too quick to ignore red flags and signs of abusive behavior. But by ignoring them we’re setting ourselves up for a bigger fall in the future. I learned my lesson again, and now the first sign of abuse, I distance myself.

  2. Hey, not all of us charming scoundrels are heartless ogres? your giving the charming a bad name.

    • That’s true, but it’s not me who is giving “charming” a bad name. It’s the heartless ogre narcissists. 😉

  3. […] Original Blog Post Share this:Like this:LikeBe the first to like this post. […]

  4. […] relationships need to end for the health and well-being of one or both people involved, especially in cases of abuse. That betrayal bond must be broken, as painful as that is. Sometimes it needs to end for other […]

  5. […] Remember…is s/he charming? That is a huge red flag and a sign of an emotional predator. Certainly not all charming people are predators or abusive, but it is something of which to take note, especially if they are particularly charming. Please, please look closer, or perhaps, take a step back and look at the bigger picture. Find out about their past relationships. How many? How did they end? Do they take responsibility for their actions? Their words? Are they relatively consistent in their words/actions? […]

  6. […] as well as saying how seriously he took responsibility, so he avoided it at all costs. Written in a charming way, but he is quite serious about not taking any responsibility. For […]

  7. […] only exception to any of these above scenarios should be when abuse is present. If you are in an abusive relationship, get out. Period. Although it still will likely ease your […]

  8. Thank you! What an well-written summation of, sadly, our biggest clue that our heart is about to be ripped out- the person is overly charming and full of flattery! Until I suffered psychopathic abuse, I was drawn to these people. They were fascinating to me. But, it turns out, devastation is not so fascinating

    • Yep. You and me both, sister. Devastation isn’t not fascinating at all. No amount of oxytocin is worth the shattering that follows. After the rapist assaulted and discarded me, it took me months to even recognize what he did. I was so trapped in a betrayal bond. It took me 3 years just to be functional again. Seriously.

      End to end, the euphoria and orgasms and “love” from him maybe filled 3 weeks in a three month period. The fallout from that sociopath was 3 years (and counting). His assault claimed my identity, my friends, my community, my job, and ultimately my marriage, which couldn’t survive the lengthy healing and debilitating PTSD. After all, my husband was traumatized, too.

      Yes. So fucking not worth it.

      May you find peace.

  9. […] I did it. Today I said goodbye. […]

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