Dear Narcissist’s Future/New Girlfriend

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Dear Future Girlfriend,

I am truly sorry for your loss.  Right now, everything is great as you’re in the honeymoon phase. But soon his veneer will slip, and you will be under his control. Whatever view you had of yourself before you met him, imagine a shadow and a husk of that. Whatever strengths and talents you imagined yourself possessing before you met him, shatter them all and start over from scratch. Your confidence and self-esteem will hit rock bottom because of the way you will be treated and manipulated.  You will lose yourself.  When he tells you that he loves you, he really means:

He loves knowing that through gaslighting, and other mind-game tactics, he can make you question your own memory, perception and sanity.

He loves the power he has to get you back whenever you threaten to leave, by throwing a few words of affirmation your way. He loves watching how quickly he talks you into trusting him when he turns on the charm, deceiving you into thinking, “this time, he will change”  He loves that he can make you feel he’s doing you a favor by being with you and throwing a few crumbs your way.

He loves enabling his self-serving behavior through verbal abuse and relishes how easy it is to diminish and manipulate you.  He loves the power to take advantage of your kindness and the pleasure he derives when he makes himself feel huge in comparison to you, taking every opportunity to devalue you with harsh words making you feel small and insignificant.

He loves how easy it is to throw a smokescreen over whatever it is that you bring up and use another issue as a diversion from the actual topic.  He loves to get you flustered, make you act “crazy” over not getting what you want from him, making you repeat yourself.

He loves having you to project onto deflecting all the issues about his own actions by shifting the focus onto something irrelevant.  He loves knowing how effective his tactics have been to keep you in pain when you keep telling him how much he hurt you.

He loves that you are there to blame, making you feel guilty to accomplish his goals and desires.

He loves deriving pleasure from depriving you of anything that would make you feel special and worthwhile with his harsh words and snide comments. He loves to exert his charisma and charm highlighting his positive attributes all the while devaluing yours.

He loves that he can isolate you through a smear campaign, keeping you from others who may nourish you, and break the spell of thinking they ever loved you; He loves making you mistrust them and that no one likes you.

He loves being the center of your universe, regardless of how he mistreats you. He loves alienating you, draining the energy from your life at risk of losing more and more of what you most value and hold dear.

He loves fixing and shaping your thoughts and beliefs, controlling your mind, so that you think of him as your Supreme Being.  He loves being in control of you like an addiction.

He loves how skillfully he manipulates others’ opinions of you through third party reinforcements, getting them to side with him as the “good” guy or “good” parent.

He loves how he can use his power to keep you down, doubting and second-guessing yourself, questioning your sanity, obsessed with explaining and defending yourself while projecting his own insecurities onto you. 

He loves you so much he will become obsessed with you, stalking your every move, always afraid you might abandon him.

He loves making you fearful, keeping you in your place. 

He loves the way he feels when he’s with you. Due to how often he hates and look down on others in general, mirroring feelings of self-loathing.

He loves to dismiss and punish accordingly with judgement and shame until you learn your “lesson,” and to take your place as a voiceless object, a possession 

to serve his pleasure.  He loves using you as a punching bag, to make himself feel good by making you feel bad about yourself or that you deserved it.

When he says he loves you, he actually loves trivializing what he did that hurt or embarrassed you, or how little time he spent engaged with you or the children.

He loves taunting and provoking you, over everything you say, any hurts or complaints you share to keep you on the crazy wheel, ever trying to explain yourself, ever doubting yourself with his altered reality tactics.  He loves to ride the crazy wheel.

He loves the way he feels when you are with him, more specifically, regarding you as a piece of property he owns. He loves the extent to which you enhance his status in the eyes of others.  He loves thinking others are jealous of his possessions.

He loves that he can make you feel insecure at the drop of a hat, especially by giving attention to other women.  

He loves you because, due to the self-loathing he carries inside, he needs someone who won’t abandon him.  Meanwhile he will be seeking comfort in others’ arms.

He loves the power he has over you and the feeling he gets from winning the game, regardless of the effects in has on you or the family.

Wishing you all the best,

The Ex – wife, mother, survivor

F is for Felony

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January Journal Continued . . . 

Scott left again on another one of his business trips. I am beginning to question his ‘business trips’ which seem to be increasing in frequency.  Not that I mind. I am glad, even grateful, when Scott is away. I can’t sleep when he is at home, I’m always afraid he will pick the lock on my bedroom door, day or night.  

While Scott is away, the texts have started rolling in like a thunderstorm.  Scott continues to proclaim that our agreement with our marriage counselor never took place stating “You’re crazy. I never agreed to stay in the basement; you’re delusional to think that you have the right to lock the door and keep me out of my own bedroom!”

In another text Scott threatened, “I will call the locksmith when I get home if you still continue to lock the door.”  

Desperate and sleep-deprived, I reached out to our marriage counselor, Sally. I asked if I misunderstood our arrangement. Was I delusional?  Had I misinterpreted our conversation that day while in Florida?  That was one of the worst days of my life, holding my sobbing father after hearing his life was at stake, and then choosing OUT of our marriage per Scott’s ultimatum.  To my relief, Sally confirmed that “Yes,” during the conference call from Florida Scott had agreed to reside in the basement guest bedroom. She reassured me stating “I will reach out to Scott and remind him of the agreement.” 

I immediately took a photo of her text and saved it to a zip drive. I have started stockpiling loads of texts and emails against Scott should we go to trial.  (Thank goodness I started keeping track of literally hours upon hours of videos and recordings as well as hundreds of emails and texts, in addition to this journal.) This evidence will be crucial later when questioning my recollection of events, dates, times, etc. as well as my reality which has been brought into question numerous times because as Scott implied “I was delusional.”  However, I have come to realize this isn’t true. Our agreement with our therapist is a perfect illustration of the crazy wheel Scott kept me spinning on. I have to constantly reach out to friends, family, therapist, and my own journal to validate my perceptions and beliefs breaking down any self-doubt. 

While Scott was away on his current ‘business trip’ we later discovered that without my knowledge and approval Scott cashed out some of our stocks and took the check sent by overnight express from E*TRADE, forged my signature, and withdrew more than $71,000 in cash from our Chicago bank. Not only did Scott violate both the MRO and MSQ orders, he committed a felony by forging my signature! 

Gaslighting – Emotional Manipulative Tactic #1

Like a stubborn child stomping his feet, having just returned from his ‘business trip’ Scott flatly refuses now to move his belongings into the guest bedroom or basement.  Not only that, he claims to never have agreed to sleep in the guest bedroom.  Nevermind our conference call with our marriage counselor and the half-dozen messages where Scott states he would move his belongings before I returned home. The guest bedroom is part of a walk-out basement with full-sized windows, a walk-in closet, and a full bathroom.  It’s larger than most apartments.  We live in a 6,500 square foot home, with a 2,500 square foot finished basement.  Scott refused to respect my boundaries. He has to have control. Always. With utter disregard for my privacy and the original agreement, Scott stated “It’s my home, my bedroom, and I have the right to come in any time I want.” Looking back I should have had that printed on a t-shirt for him, having heard it more times than I could count over the course of the divorce. So much for an amicable and peaceful divorce.

Then to add insult to injury while in bed that night, I couldn’t believe it when I heard Scott picking the lock on my bedroom door!  Frightened I quickly hit the recording button on my phone.  Scott nonchalantly entered and walked to the bed in his boxers and wife-beater t-shirt. To my shock, he climbed into my bed while I was still in it! He put his ear plugs in and blindfold on and proclaimed “It’s your turn to sleep in the basement.” Then he rolled over and turned off the light.  The Supreme Being had banished me to the basement — and so I went like a good, obedient girl.

 As I laid there in the guest bedroom bed I thought “If that’s how he’s going to act, the war over the master bedroom is on!”  What is his problem? It is pragmatic that I sleep upstairs in the master bedroom. Scott travels a significant amount of time.  I am the primary caretaker of the kids, waking them up in the morning and getting them ready and off to school every day.  Plus, that was our agreement with our therapist during our conference call when I was at the hospital in Florida with my father.  Of that I was certain — I’m not crazy or delusional. I can’t believe Scott now claims that conversation never took place. I thought to myself, “Who’s the crazy one now?”  I was so frustrated and sick of all of Scott’s games already.  I needed help, and a new attorney. 

Emotional Manipulation #1 – Gaslighting   

Gaslighting” was one of Scott’s strongest manipulation tactics.  Gaslighting is a form of persistent manipulation and brainwashing that causes the victim to doubt oneself, and to ultimately lose their own sense of perception, identity, and self-worth.  Gaslighting statements and accusations are usually based on blatant lies or an extreme exaggeration of the truth.  The term is derived from the 1944 film, “Gaslight”, in which a husband tries to convince his wife that she’s insane by forcing her to question herself and her sense of reality.  When someone is gaslighted, the narcissist will tell you, “That didn’t happen.  You imagined it.  You’re crazy. You’re delusional.”  In a nutshell, the narcissist will lie and that instills doubt.  Scott now proclaiming that he never agreed to reside in the guest bedroom during the divorce was a perfect example.  It’s easy to see how powerful this can be, as it allows the abuser to deflect all focus from their own actions and shift it to something completely irrelevant. Or, Scott would twist it so I would doubt my perceptions of what really happened time and time again.

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