The narcissist/sociopath will do everything they can to maintain some level of control in your life even if you’ve been separated or divorced for years. The active involvement they maintain in finding out information about you, your daily coming and going, the company you keep, your schedule is alarming and borders on obsessive or even stalking behavior. I have been divorced from my ex for a few years now yet he or his toadies regularly keep tabs on me. This year my ex even tried to have our daughter moved into another classroom solely so one of his toadies could keep tabs. His toady’s daughter is in the same grade but by luck of the draw and God’s good graces my daughter finally ended up in a different class. It’s so nice to think about going a whole school year without being spied on. I teach in the same school district that my children attend actually at a school right down the street. Because I’m so close I regularly help out in the classrooms and on campus. It’s great for the kids to see me so often and I get to spend extra time with them and I believe parental involvement is really key to raising scholastically motivated kids. Anyway, my ex has never been involved in the children’s education. Occasionally his work schedule would overlap but he is in law enforcement and routinely every four months he’ll have at least a couple of weekdays off. On those days he’s never had any interest in helping out in the kids’ classrooms. He’s yet to volunteer his time or go on any field trips etc. Of course there are lots of parents that don’t get the opportunity to hangout in their kid’s classes and I’m not slamming any of them. In fact I wouldn’t mention my ex in this regard if it wasn’t for the fact that he claims to be heavily involved in their schooling. The truth is he is not involved by choice but doesn’t like the lack of control over this situation so he has spies. I find the entire thing childish and annoying. I’ve even had his spies show up and the children’s doctors’ appointments only to be told by the nursing staff that they had to leave so they went to their car and immediately jumped on their cell phone.
In addition to having spies follow you around the narcissist/sociopath will try to place unreasonable demands on your time. Most recently my ex demanded that I show up at a very secluded park with my son at a specific time. He stated that it was for a birthday party for my son’s friend but my ex refused to provide any details about the party and also refused to give me the invitation. He simply demanded that I show up at a local park and at a specific time. I’ve mentioned before that my ex has every motive in the world for killing me. He’s an abusive sociopath and he’s always armed with a 45 caliber handgun in the small of his back and a 32 caliber on his ankle. Unfortunately he’s a cop. Since our separation I’ve made sure that my whereabouts are always know, my routes are varied, my house has extra security measures installed and whenever I have to have contact with him it’s on video tape in a very public area. My ex has told me a number of times how he could kill me and get away with it. He told me that I’d simply be just another missing person that nobody cared about. No one would ever find my body. There is simply no way in heck I would show up anywhere this lunatic told me too without an armed escort and lots of cameras. If he had provided the invitation or details about the “birthday party” I would have gladly taken my son. But my gut was telling me something just wasn’t right. If my ex truly wanted our son to attend a function why withhold information about the function? It doesn’t make sense. So we didn’t go to the alleged birthday party. This was the email I received from him later that day.
I can’t believe you made M** miss his friend’s birthday party! It’s hard enough for M** to keep close friends without you sabotaging him. I could understand if you were not able to take him for some good reason but you had none and it’s absolutely horrible that you would tell our son that it was my fault that he could not go! What is wrong with you? You had all the information on the party and you specifically told him I would not give it to you?
The poor kid just wanted to go to his best friends party and you try to use it as an opportunity to get my son upset with me? And then you take him there anyway when it was over? How messed up are you? Do you not care that would ve been upsetting to him?
Thanks for another reminder of what a horrible person you are.
Sent from my iPad
It doesn’t matter how much time has pass or how long you’ve been divorced the abuse will continue and they will try to control you with it. Always remember who you are. You are an incredible individual with compassion and empathy. The narcissist/sociopath has zero capacity for compassion and empathy. He delights in causing chaos and pain. Don’t fall for the manipulation. Walk away from it, do not engage, have a glass of wine and revel in the fact that you are amazing human being and they have to pretend to be human.
Proxy Recruitment is a topic I have covered in previous blog posts but I want to discuss something I occasionally grapple with. First, let me define proxy recruitment, “a way of controlling or abusing another person by manipulating other people into unwittingly backing ‘doing the dirty work’.”
“Sometimes attempts to control someone or abuse them are fairly obvious, with Proxy Recruitment however, manipulation of others is used to achieve the same aim in a highly secretive way.
Friends, colleagues, or family members may be drawn into the perpetrator’s game plan through false accusations of abuse, smear campaigns or distortion campaigns, and these people are then encouraged to take up the perpetrator’s cause against the victim.” Courtesy of http://outofthefog.net/CommonBehaviors/ProxyRecruitment.html
My ex-husband, while we were divorcing told all of his friends and our mutual friends (some of the people I had known since high school) that I was trying to steal custody of our children from him by suing him for 100% custody and zero visitation. This was absolutely not true, in fact the exact opposite was true, he sued me for 100% custody and zero visitation. And those ignorant, so-called friends willingly sign declarations he dictated declaring me an unfit mother. He had these idiots convinced that I was stealing our children away from him and without ever picking up the phone and asking me, they submitted declarations to have my children removed from my custody. Can you imagine dealing with a divorce, an affair and all the headaches and heartaches associated with that and instead of your mutual friends lending a sympathetic ear or just remaining neutral, they try to convince a judge you’re a horrible parent without any evidence? Not one of them once ever bothered to confront me or simply ask me about my ex’s stories.
In their declarations I was called a drug using, gang banging, stripper prone to abusive, violent rages and severe mental instability. These were people who had stayed in my home; taken advantage of my hospitality on numerous occasions, people whom I’d brought lavish gifts to and spoiled their children. These same people who had known me a majority of my life, people who knew my parents and family. To this day it is a something I have never healed from. I just can’t forgive or forget that these people never once bothered to speak to me about what was really going on and instead became accomplices to an attempt at legal kidnapping. When a trusted friend decides to believe horrific lies about you it’s devastating but when that friend takes it to the next step and actually tries to have your own children, whom you’ve dedicated your entire life to, remove from you permanently it’s an incredibly horrific crime.
The ironic thing is that I’m a school teacher without as much as a speeding ticket issued to me in my life. In fact, I’m the only one out of all of them that not only went to college but also grad school. I’ve never in my life been in a fight nor a gang and I absolutely don’t use drugs of any kind. In other words, I’m a “good girl”. I’m extremely close with my family, active in the PTA and volunteer regularly in my community. Geez, this summer instead of lolling about I’m teaching English to 17 students from China. It was shocking to me, not only how opposite the lying declarations were about who I am but also that these people could be convinced of this. The logic didn’t even make sense. My ex-husband is a cop. What kind of cop marries a druggy, gang banging, abusive, mentally unstable stripper? In fact, the declarations were thrown out of court for that reason. The declarations were so slanderous the judge dismissed them and threated my ex and his attorney with contempt for perjury.
Even though these declarations went nowhere they are none the less incredibly painful and enraging. There are so many times I wish I could confront these people with all the facts and all the damage my ex is doing to our children and just shake them, screaming, “YOU TRIED TO STEAL MY CHILDREN FROM ME BECAUSE THIS PHILANDERING, NARCISSISTIC, ABUSIVE, SOCIOPATH TOLD YOU TO! LOOK AT HIM, LOOK AT WHAT HE’S DONE, LOOK AT THE FACTS! HOW COULD YOU EVER DO THAT TO ANOTHER HUMAN BEING! WHAT COULD I HAVE POSSIBLY DONE TO YOU TO MAKE YOU WANT ME TO LIVE WITHOUT MY CHILDREN FOREVER!! HOW COULD YOU WILLINGLY INFLICT THAT PAIN ON ANOTHER PERSON!?” The amount of contempt I have for these individuals is unimaginable. I refuse to even have contact with anyone that is friends with my ex or his toadies. The damage that has been done in my life due to Proxy Recruitment is irreparable. The only thing I can do now is protect myself and more importantly my children. I have learned to live by an old adage, “Birds of a feather stick together.” If someone is friends with my ex or his cronies then there is obviously some level that they relate on. And I want nothing to do with anyone that can relate to someone that would steal someone’s children. I want nothing to do with anyone that can condone such horrific abuse and immorality.
I’m a woman of faith and I believe in a day of reckoning for each of us. I know without a doubt in my head that I will meet my maker with peace in my heart and without regrets or anxiety of past indiscretions. However, I cringe deep down in my bones when I think about being one of them. That is the only peace or resolution I have in this situation. My mother has always told me that the good lord has a way of evening the score. I would be very afraid if that was the score against me.
In the years since, I have eliminated everyone from my confidence that has anything to do with those people or my ex. Life is now joyous and I have some of the most amazing friends and family. Disappointment and betrayal are things of the past. I have become incredibly choosey about who I become close to and who I share my life with and it has made all the difference. I love my life, my family and my friends.
Infidelity, cheating, is a large dynamic in the life of a narcissist. Of course they have all kinds of excuses for why they were unfaithful typically villianizing their spouse a million different ways to rationalize their immoral behavior. The fact of the matter is there’s no excuse or rationalization for immoral, destructive and horrible behavior. That’s exactly what cheating amounts to. A cheating spouse is one of the worst things that can happen to a person.
Imagine you invest everything into something only to find out that everything you should have received in return was given to someone else. Infidelity rips a hole in your soul that never fully heals. There’s simply no way it can. Someone that you willingly gave everything to, loved unconditionally, share every dream with, had children with and essentially made a part of your entire existence has hurt you in an incredibly intimate way. They destroyed everything you ever did with them and tainted every memory you had of them. This is a person that you profoundly trusted with every aspect of your life and you find out they have been deceiving you the entire time. Cheating is an incredibly selfish and sadistic act.
As a woman who experienced this in my own marriage I have a very soft spot in my heart for anyone on the receiving end of this horrific deception. I was recently reminded of my own trauma while watching one of those silly reality housewives shows (my guilty pleasure). The scene dealt with a husband making a call to a mistress while at a dinner with his wife and friends. He excuses himself saying he has to call work, walks far away and makes the call. During the call intimacies and innuendos are discussed then when he sees his wife approaching him, he viciously bashes his wife to his mistress, calling his wife a b**** and another profane word typically used as slang for female anatomy and starts with a “c”. This scene I think would strike a chord with anyone that has been the deceived spouse. Maybe I was transposing my own experience and reading into what I was actually seeing but I swear I recognized that knowing look on the wife’s face. That look that says, “This isn’t right. I know what’s happening.” My heart sank and my stomach twisted because I remember that feeling distinctly. I knew when my ex-husband was cheating. I wouldn’t admit it, not even to myself, but now years after, I can tell you that I always knew every single time. At the time I couldn’t admit it, it was impossible to admit that the man I slept next to, was completely vulnerable to, was not the man I thought he was and not the man I earnestly told everyone he was. It was impossible to admit that I was living a lie; I was living in a glass castle filled with smoke and mirrors. I couldn’t image throwing stones. Instead I just kept polishing the walls of that glass castle so everyone would be blinded by its brilliant shine and never look too deep.
I watched this woman’s face on the TV and listened to the lies she earnestly told everyone about how great her husband was and I knew the truth and the pain that she was carefully hiding, polishing her own glass castle. I’ve heard experts say that infidelity is a symptom of a larger problem and I believe this to be true however it’s a symptom that destroys lives, rips apart families and forever changes people. One of these days my children will find out the truth and they will have to live with what their father did to all of us. They will be forever changed too. I’m not looking forward to the day when my children see their father with grown up eyes and understand the depth and destruction. Thinking about that breaks my heart. I have been forever changed by the sadistic actions of my former spouse. There is an innocence that is gone. I will never approach another relationship the way I did with him. I know longer have that ability. For better or worse it is now who I am.
Why do I write? This blog started as a journal in a composition notebook. Good old pen and paper. It was simply an outlet for me to vent my feelings and frustrations. Then to be perfectly honest, as more and more nasty things happened and I began to feel more and more victimized I decided to turn it into a blog in an effort to expose the narcissist in my life. A narcissist greatest fear is exposure that is why they embark on such huge smear campaigns against their targets.
However, as time has passed I’ve become acutely aware of the number of people that have been or are currently involved with a narcissist. I get messages all the time on Facebook, Pinterest, Twitter, email and, of course, here on my blog from people that can relate to the experiences I’ve shared. It breaks my heart to know that so many of you have experienced these things but I’m so grateful that we can share in process of healing and recovery. I know when I was married and unable to escape the abuse and manipulation there were so many times when I thought for sure that I was the crazy one because of all the things he would tell me, all the contradicts, all the lies, and all of the manipulation techniques he was employing. I wish I had come across this information 10 years ago it would have saved me buckets of tears. My only hope is that the information that I pass on and the experiences I share can save a couple buckets for someone else. I’m not trying to sound overly benevolent. I just wanted everyone to know that I read every single thing that you send me and I am always touched by your words and/or your experiences.
If you are currently in this situation, hang in there, get help and get out if you can. If you were in this and are still healing, I’m right there with you and I’m pretty sure it takes a very long time to fully recover. Regardless, we can all get through this and be better, stronger, healthier and happier versions of ourselves for having survived it.