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My Narcissistic Ex-Husband

Reflections on loving and living with a Narcissist.  Let our experts guide you toward the healing power of moving on and allowing yourself some time in the spotlight.  Get advice on healing from his behavior and finding yourself again.

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In most relationships, when one party wants to leave, there is discussion, a break-up.  A narcissist can and likely will leave you at the very moment you stop making them feel important. No surprise when you know, but when you don't it is a huge and traumatic shock.  Your partner leaves, usually without warning or explanation and chances are, if there is an explanation, your partner heaps the blame upon you.  Often they will have another person waiting in the wings.  And there you are left holding the bag, as it were, wondering what you’ve done wrong.

Sometimes, as it was with my ex and me, it can be a long and painful process with break-ups and reconciliations along the way.  Sometimes he just wakes up one morning and leaves.  However it happens, it will eventually happen.  Narcissists cannot maintain relationships.  It is part and parcel of the narcissistic process to break down relationships and to drift away or break away from them.  This is called the discarding or abandonment phase. 

It can be a terribly painful process that will leave you wondering how you can atone for your sins and bring him back so you can prove you did nothing wrong.  If you have to maintain contact with your ex, you will likely see him with his new girlfriend, acting towards her like he did towards you in the beginning phase of your relationship together.  But keep in mind that he has not changed overnight.  She is no better at anything than you.  She won’t be able to keep him happy.  She will not be able to change him once his narcissism begins to break down their relationship either.  His behavior has nothing to do with you.  It has nothing to do with her.  It is all him and his pathology.  

Moving Out

My ex and I had been living together in our apartment for about eight months, after having moved across country for the fourth time in less than a year.  I looked around our apartment.  It was stacked ceiling-high in all four corners with boxes of his stuff that he had never unpacked.  When he told me he wasn’t comfortable, I suggested that he try unpacking his boxes.  I mean, how could he feel comfortable if he didn’t have his stuff unpacked?  I certainly didn’t feel comfortable with his boxes all over the place.  He said, no, that wouldn’t help.  He had to move out. He explained that he needed his space.  He didn’t want to break up, per se, but he just couldn’t live with me any more because...and he proceeded to list off reasons why I was unfit for cohabitation.  

While your partner is busy blaming you for his having to leave, understand that it is not your fault.  This is the way narcissists function in relationships.  A narcissist always has to be in control, and moving from one relationship to the other is one way of maintaining control by getting out before he can be dumped by you, or some other such nonsense.   For a narcissist to actually work through a problem in a relationship, he would have to admit that there was a problem and that he was part of that problem, and could therefore be part of the solution.  A narcissist will not admit that.  That would be giving up control.

He still wanted to be married.  He just couldn’t live with me.  He said this would make our relationship stronger.  I believed him.  Well, I didn’t believe him, but I was unhappy living with him.  He had been more argumentative and increasingly secretive about what he did, which meant he never said anything to me that wasn’t criticism or idle chit-chat about the weather.  So I told myself that we were doing the best thing for our relationship and that it would bring us closer. 

We lived that way for a year and our relationship got considerably less difficult, but that was due to the fact that we weren’t together as much.  We certainly weren’t making any progress toward working through our issues and he never stopped criticizing me and tearing apart our relationship.  Looking back, it wouldn’t surprise me to find out that he was cheating on me.  Infidelity is common with narcissistic personalities.  He still had keys to my apartment, but I didn’t have keys to his.  He had no landline installed, so he had no answering machine.  He lived on the other side of town, so we wouldn’t run into one another in the neighborhood.


Image Courtesy of thetimes.co.uk

During the time we were living separately, we had broken up a few times.  This had become a new tactic of his.  When we would argue, he’d get to a point where he’d threaten to break-up.  At that point, I would either backtrack or beg forgiveness so he wouldn’t break up with me.  Sometimes, he’d break up with me regardless, accusing me of giving up on the relationship.  These were generally overnight breakups, usually when I was at his place, and he’d send me out of his bed, back to my apartment, crying - often times on my bicycle in the middle of the night.   Each time, he would call me the next morning and give me a second chance, allowing me to recant or apologize for the things I had said that made us break up.  In his mind, it was never him that pushed us to break up.  It was me, something I had said or done or expected that made us have to break up.  And every time I would take the opportunity he gave me and we’d get back together.

We carried on like this for a year and he eventually moved back into my apartment after the lease for his was up. 

We tried to return to life “as normal,” so we took a vacation together.  To call our time on that vacation anything even close to relaxing or fun would be crazy.  During the two weeks we were away, we did nothing but fight.  He often left me in a heap, crying in our motel room, while he went out and experienced the local attractions.   Once, he even left me standing outside a movie theater, two tickets in hand, as he rode away on the tandem bicycle he harangued me into thinking would be a good idea to rent.  He came back and allowed me to apologize, but not before he left me standing there for 20 minutes, without any money, without my phone, and no way to get back to the room, for which he wouldn’t let me carry the key anyway. 

Moving On:

A week or so after we had come home, we were arguing about something - who even remembers what, since we argued about almost everything - and, as had become his custom during our arguments, he threatened to leave me.   This time I called his bluff.  I agreed that it would be a good idea to break up.  He became enraged.  He stomped around the apartment, taking pictures of us off the walls, telling me, “You won’t need THIS anymore.”  If I hadn’t actually been there to see his rage, and if I hadn’t been frightened that he’d decide to rip something off me and proclaim that I didn’t need it anymore, I would have laughed.

 

Image Courtesy of intuitionlight.com

He lived there with me for more than a month until he could find a new apartment.  I couldn’t leave the apartment without breaking the lease and triggering huge financial consequences.  During that time, he didn’t speak one word to me.  He took his phone calls outside of the apartment.  He tried to leave before I woke up and came home after he thought I was asleep.  He walked out of the room if I walked into it.  It was torture since, at his insistence, we lived in an alcove studio.  He did everything he could to completely ignore me.  In the beginning, I tried to talk to him.  I tried to explain that this was the best thing, that, if he could look at it objectively, he’d recognize how unhappy he was because we wanted exactly the opposite things out of life.  Eventually, I stopped even trying to communicate.  Looking back, I feel lucky that he ignored me and didn’t try to destroy me in a fit of narcissistic revenge.

Moving Away:

Once he moved out, we didn’t speak for close to three months.  Then, one day, he called me.  We had decided to file our own divorce papers, but he had been listening to the radio and had heard a report that many people who live in our state and who file their own paperwork, miss something and don’t actually dissolve their marriages, encountering all sorts of problems down the line from tax issues to possible nullification of future marriages.  He brought up a the name of local person who’d file the papers and suggested we contact her.  He flew off the handle when I agreed that it was a good idea to use her.  He hung up on me after accusing me of abandoning our relationship and him.

There was no way I could win.  It seemed like he only wanted the opposite of what I wanted.  If I wanted to be together, he wanted out.  If I wanted out, he couldn’t live without me.  When I stood fast and wouldn’t take him back, he pulled out the big guns and cried, telling me how I had ruined his life.  One the day we actually met with the woman who was going to file our divorce papers, he started crying in her office.   And, after we were done, I sat with him for close to four hours on the stoop of a old victorian house across the street from this woman’s office while he cried some more.  Part of me didn’t want to leave him like that because I was honestly afraid that he would commit suicide.  I had never seen him so distraught.  In fact, I don’t think I have ever seen him express such emotion about anything or even feel sadness.  The only emotions I had seen from him were rage and arousal.

What I learned that day was that he was already living with someone else.  He took a phone call during the time we were sitting together on the stoop.  When he answered the phone, his voice was completely normal and his demeanor calm, practically happy, not like the person who’d seconds earlier been crying hysterically.  When he hung up, he went back to crying as if he’d never stopped.  He had just shut it off and turned it back on, like he had some sort of a switch. It was scary to see.

What I realized then about myself then was even more frightening to me.  I was still under his spell.  I was sitting there with him trying to comfort him.  I still wanted to make him happy.  I was still trying to convince him of my worth as a human being.  Even after all the abuse I had taken from him.  After he had me push away almost all of my friends, question my sanity, push me out, leave me helpless, leave me hopeless, I still wanted to make him feel better.  He was still trying to manipulate me.

I had to get away from him and quickly.  Taking my cue from the movies, I looked at my watch and told him I had to be somewhere.  He looked at me, eyes puffy and red.  He smiled and said something to the effect of how happy we had been.  I couldn’t even tell you what I said to him because I had shut my mind down.  All I could think about was getting away from him.  It was my primal instinct to run from a predator, to save myself.

And that is what I did.  If you’re in this phase of your relationship with a narcissistic partner, use the distance to your advantage.  Recognize it for what it actually is, which is your abuser leaving you.  Let him go.

Join us at First Wive's World to share your divorce trials, tribulations, and successes. We are a community that cares deeply about your experience and believes that in sharing we can make each other stronger. 

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59 comments

  • Comment Link lola Monday, 18 September 2017 07:13 posted by lola

    oMG... This story is exactly my relationship, the details. I really needed to read this. And I am not alone.

    Thank you so much for sharing! I would like to get in touch with the author.

  • Comment Link make money asap Tuesday, 12 September 2017 00:55 posted by make money asap

    This helps. Thanks!

  • Comment Link DR Friday, 14 April 2017 23:28 posted by DR

    Wow that sounded like my relationship with my xhusband this past year. After I divorced him for leaving me and cheating 6x( later I learned that he had been with his x wife sexually each time he left me). After our divorce he returned 2 more times after him calling it quits for good each time. This past morning both after he begged me to remarry him and I couldn't seem to make him understand that I couldn't TRUST him, he finally said, " ok then I'm done". Wow that what I got for repeating forgiveness and being Kind the him because I truly had compassion. Oh well I hope he is happy now because he came back with tears every time. The problem was IF the tears were real they didn't last. I think they were real but for what HE had lost. Knowing he couldn't get me back so easily he decided to move on. Most likely I will ALWAYS love the man who lives his penis more. I had walls up a littke but higher each time he came back. I truly believe he realized he messed up a good relationships BUT as your did he also blames me for it all.he did admit that his "sin" was what pulled him away, but he just couldn't/ wouldnt commit to do the work to make me trust him again. Looking back maybe I shouldn't have ever trusted again after the first time he was unfaithful. Live and learn. Trust is VERY hard to get back reading that niw it's the excruciating pain of healing from his leaving and returning and repeating.

  • Comment Link Jody Friday, 03 February 2017 05:43 posted by Jody

    Hi. I read this article and relate to it but I think there's a bit of narcissism in all of us purely because we all want to feel validated not abandoned. This is my story as I try to remain focused and strong through the grieving process.
    It's been a roller coaster of emotions since early Nov 2016. I told my husband of almost 9 years that our marriage is going down and I need emotional support for his step daughter (my daughter) as she has sucked the life out of me (God bless her at 23) because of her chronic depression and moods and suicidal ideology. I think I'm in the midst of an emotional breakdown so asked for a kiss, cuddle and a compliment and an occasional "I love you." Projected/mirrored back was "so do I.' I said I have no fuel in my tank and cant run or have anything left for me or him which is why I was asking him. He is emotionally bankrupt and I'm emotionally abandoned and so I guess so is he. I'm justified and communicate and articulate but hever has communicated or listened to me. Luckily I've always been emotionally strong but I'm in meltdown so asked him. He wasn't going to do much so I left the marital room and moved into another room and have a separate bathroom.
    This has been our life over past 11 weeks. At first he wanted to play happy families and when I didn't get the response I wanted (to fight to save me/us), I felt abandoned and invalidated and unloved. He puts a brick wall up as a means of coping and so do I. I've learned to with family abandoning me. I'm seeing a counsellor once a week but just talk. Don't like talking always to friends.
    I've kept a diary of the controlling man who emotionally abuses and financially controls me. Because I never make contact in any way since I'm the one who left, (he thinks we both agreed but I initiated or we'd still be together), he wants to be my best friend. I said "or you're my husband or not but I have a best friend."As soon as I stopped talking as I'm angry he cuts me off his private health insurance, visa card, transport, tolls and asked me to pay my mobile ph bills from now on. In November he agreed to keep paying a monthly allowance (I know lucky me), and bills as they are all connected. He cut all this because I'm not talking and now out of character, he didn't come home for 2 nights and gets home late the past 2 nights and leaves early before I leave my room and who knows if he'll come home tonight. I'm praying he just leaves and rents til settlement so I can live outside my bedroom. I'm a prisoner because I don't want to engage in talk so avoid him. After first 10 weeks he said we should do counselling to try repair and I agreed. He said, "I love you and want to grow old with you." So these words are in my head but his actions don't stack because he is still going on a Sth American tour in May for ten weeks and not taking/adding me to his plans. We had talked about this trip for years. When I questioned him and said he should have sat me down at computer and booked me as good faith on moving forward as well as counselling he said "baby steps and we need counselling to get on an even keel." Seriously, it had only been a few weeks of me in another room and still eating together and movies and occasional sex. So here's my internal monologue.."I love you and want to grow old with you but can't wait to leave you alone in house for 11 weeks while I take our much talked about trip. I thought I was over reacting and asked both male and female friends who agreed. How can he leave you for such a long time if he loves you and wants to grow old with you. Even a male plutonic friend said he would fly interstate for 2 weeks to keep me company. I told separated husband and he wasn't too happy. WTF!
    Well that's exactly what I'm going to do in our house. He knows I have no money and now I'm working as a casual kindy carer and hardly any shifts. I can't afford rent and he knows he has been financially looking after me/controlling me for the time we've been together. My money is tied up until he is ready to settle in Sep-Nov 2017. I'm a prisoner and have nowhere to move to.

  • Comment Link R.C.Napier Tuesday, 10 January 2017 02:00 posted by R.C.Napier

    My partner of 20 years has hurt me completely.2016 was the toughest year of my life I fought cervical cancer while he let go of my hand and embarked on an emotional affair with a woman who stays a stones throw from our home.On discovering this I also found that over the past 4 or 5 years he has betrayed my trust and made me look like a fool with indiscretions with other women.I am a wreck at the moment.We have a teenage daughter who has also been affected by this.I need to know why? Why and how can you do this to your wife in her hour of need?Well,because he only thinks of himself,5days after my treatment ended I was being chastised for the smallest of reasons but I realise now it was his way of deflecting his own guilt.Almost a year down the line and the situation is no different,I do not trust him the trust has gone.Love him?yes I do... why do I look like the crazy one?Never once in 6 weeks(5 days a week) of chemo and radiotherapy did he ever accompany me to any of my appointments I will never forgive him for abandoning me.An absolute narcissist through and through and will not take any responsibility for his actions nor does he find it necessary to apologise for the way he has treated me..I think this pattern of behaviour will continue if not presently,for sure in the near future.Oh and the 4 or 5 years of stuff that took place behind my back well,that was all my fault!!yeh right....I am going to leave him,your comments have helped me decipher this mess.I have been given a second chance at life now I need a second chance of happiness,x

  • Comment Link Love hurts Monday, 09 January 2017 12:58 posted by Love hurts

    My husband decided he wanted a break after I cought him cheating for the last time. This time I had evidence of his cheating and I sent it to his sister, he was furious he moved out 2 weeks later I was 8 months pregnant. We continued to see each other and it was all good until he cheated again but this time it was true love he said he had found his soul mate I was 2 weeks away from having the baby. He insisted that he never loved me and that he had sycrificed 17 years next to me for our oldest daughter and he was not about to do it again. Delivery time came and he refused to show up to the hospital because this time I sent his new lover a Facebook message and she related the message to him, his was so upset that I did this and now I could ruin his new life next to his internet girl friend that he even turned my cell phone off and cut me off financially I was hurt and devistated but after a few days I realized that he was only thinking about himself and it has always been that way people don't change and now after a month of him and his new girl friend they are planing to get married and are meeting for the first time in morocco because she is from there and he is going to meet the family. He has seen the baby twice since she was born she is a week old. He has not given me money until I apologize for what I've done to his girl friend. I feel crazy at times because he flipped. He tells me that he never loved me he treats me cold and rude. He is a stranger to me he is unrecognizable a different person. All of the sudden his life changed he hates going out and is in love with his internet girl friend who is meeting for the first time next month. When he was with me he was out all the time at bars and would cheat or hire prostitutes and blamed me for it. He would say that I was not doing my kid. I feel as if I did something wrong by catching him cheating it's like he blames me for the end of us.

  • Comment Link Lyn Braun Sunday, 18 September 2016 00:36 posted by Lyn Braun

    I could really use some advice, I'm hurting and confused (I do have a therapist). I grew up in an abusive household with my dad drinking constantly and physically abusing me. I didn't really want to get married or have kids but then I met John. I wasn't very experienced in relationships because they didn't interest me but with him it was different.

    He seemed to love me like no one had ever bothered to before. He told me about how awful his first wife had made him feel (a flag, I know, we were mid-20s) and I wanted to make it all better for him. I loved him in a way that I didn't know I was capable of loving someone. I changed my entire life and uprooted myself to live in his home state because he had a child there.

    In the first few months, I was clingy and enraptured because, well, I was and I knew no one except for him. I just wanted to make him happy and be good to him like I felt like a person should be. I had done a lot of the same things for him that I had done for platonic but close friends. He told me that I "Loved him too much."

    Over time, we've had our share of struggles and crises. For example, my dad and I repaired our relationship and he then died unexpectedly of a heart issue. I had to face the funeral alone because John told me he felt like he was having a heart attack at the funeral and it was actually a panic attack. I have discovered repeated emotional affairs including a texting relationship that included 4,000 text messages in one month. He claims nothing happened physically. He promised to never contact any of those people again but he does.

    We have not really put effort into the relationship. I have grown to resent him and at time, hate him. He ignored me and made me and our relationship such a low priority that I found other things to occupy my time and went back to school earning higher degrees and thus enabling me to work in my dream field. He is bitterly jealous of my happiness and the fact that I can work from home but claims he's not. He says I am the reason he can't finish school because when is he supposed to do his work? Well, like everyone else? In the evening? I have. I have helped him each time he's wanted to go to school, helped him get organized, tried to keep him on track to avoid wracking up debt if he decides to quit unexpectedly (as he usually does).

    We have two kids and I don't want them to grow up thinking this is ok. After a point, I started saying things to hurt him because I was hurt about never seeming to matter. When we were in the early stages, before I moved to his home state with him, he told me what a romantic he was but I've never seen that. He told me he's a great listener but I've never gotten that.

    Over the last few months, things were genuinely getting better. We weren't fighting, we are making decent money, we were able to move to a bigger place with enough space, and everything was moving in the right direction. However, he has been diagnosed as having narcissistic personality disorder and borderline personality disorder and he does need to work on these issues because he has a tendency to binge drink and stay out all night. (I'm a prude and don't know how to have fun because it's perfectly normal for adult, married men to do these things OR it's my fault he does them). I told him he can't move to our new place unless he gets help. He said he would. He didn't because he says the doctor who diagnosed him is a "quack" and that John's personal primary care physician (who referred him to the quack) agrees and says he doesn't need talk therapy.

    A couple of weeks ago, he came home highly intoxicated and started crying telling me how much he really loved me. He told me that he feels so bad about what I went through as a child with an alcoholic father. He said he understood why I fought so viciously with him when he does the things he does. Our 13th wedding anniversary came up and we went on a romantic dinner and spent the night at a luxury hotel (priceline, ;) ). There were no fights, no vicious blow outs, no nothing. Two days before we are set to move, he tells me he wants a divorce. Since then, he has treated me like I'm some fling that won't leave him alone instead of his wife and mother of two of his kids. I'm suspicious of the timing since his child support obligation from his first failed marriage ends this month.

    Needless to say, I'm confused and hurting. Despite everything that's happened, I don't want a divorce. We were separated and almost finalized a divorce a few years ago and he was not capable of living on his own. I can't do that again, go through that emotional turmoil and then stop it at the last minute. I want him to go to a therapist and for us to get marriage counseling instead of us going twice and him deciding the therapist is an idiot or on my side. I can tell my therapist is frustrated with this because rationally I know we would be better off apart but I can't help thinking it is my fault for being so mean when we fought or not enough. I don't want it to be over.

    Any thoughts/advice would be much appreciated.

  • Comment Link Gwen Markenn Saturday, 27 August 2016 03:12 posted by Gwen Markenn

    Here is one for you.

    I just married my husband in May of this year. We were happy and great together no problems at all. My husband throughout our three year relationship was a tad bit selfish. Very concerned about his needs being met etc. but I chalked it up to him being a bit of a man child and that he growing up still. Little did I know.

    My husband abandoned me on August 1st. Two months and 10 days after we were married. He took of his ring and left during an argument over whether or not I should move out. I was considering moving out because he had been acting strange and crying all the time over something he refused to tell me about. All the while blaming me for the way he was feeling. I finally was fed up so I said if you want space, I will move out for a bit to a friends and we can cool off. Whoa, that did not go well. He blew up at me took of his ring said I would be fine without him and left.

    48 hours later when I moved all the money from our joint bank account out of view (because he was pulling money out of atms) he called. We decided to talk and the first thing he said was that it was over that he made a mistake marrying me and he didn't want me anymore. He blamed me the whole conversation about how I made him feel and was really really mean. Something I had NEVER seen before. When I pushed back and said that I would not entertain divorce and I would contest it he called me a bitch. Here I was sitting trying to save my husband and our marriage and I was the bitch?

    Then 10 minutes later he was crying and making ME pity him. I held him close and tried to comfort him, all I could think of was how I wanted to protect him from himself. Crazy I know.

    During this process he has burned all of his closest friends, our best man even. His family is upset at him. He won't take responsibility for what he's done and tells everyone that I made him unhappy. All the while I'm at home taking care of our 4 pets, paying the bills and hurting. He is just going out with friends that will see him, shopping for an apartment of his own, going to the movies, the gym you name it. He doesn't care one iota of the pain he's caused me or the betrayal to everyone. We were after all JUST MARRIED. We were still paying for the honeymoon and some wedding debt. But he doesn't care at all. It isn't logical and I can't even wrap my head around how someone can be so selfish.

    A month later I've filed for divorce. I found out that 2 weeks before leaving he starting a text and phone emotional relationship with a girl that we were introduce to a month before he left. I found out through our cell phone bill which he was still having me pay for while he was gone. He moved back in with his parents since he isn't that successful and cannot support himself.

    He talks to this girl (who has a boyfriend) in the middle of the night when he should be sleeping. In fact he talks to her during times I was not allowed to bother him during our relationship because he needed his sleep for work. God, that hurt. I was his girlfriend, fiance and wife and he never let me even call at 11pm to wake him when I got off of work, but all a sudden this girl pays him attention and he will wake up at 3am for her call.

    The kicker is he won't admit to the cheating because he said he would never cheat. In fact he stops being friends with people who are cheaters because it's so against his moral code. But if I accuse him of being a cheater he does NOT deny it. He just changes the subject and tells me about how much I hurt him in our relationship.

    A relationship where he got a foot massage every night, lunch brought to him almost everyday at work and my complete and utter adoration.

    I seriously thought for awhile that he has a brain tumor, but I believe that he is a narcissist now. The last time we met he cried the whole time and said that he can't even see me without crying because he is so hurt by what I've done. BTW NOBODY KNOWS WHAT I'VE DONE. I haven't and couldn't really hide what was happening to my marriage from anyone, so I've gotten the insight from a lot of people that this is him not me.

    Anyway, he blamed me for everything and said he would never forgive me. That he had tried to help me change and I wouldn't change. BTW, I had been faking to buy into this stupid story because I thought maybe he was depressed or in crisis. So I told him I had changed (even though he couldn't have seen it being gone) and he said HE KNEW! HA!
    But that he didn't want me anyway, that it was too little too late and I only changed when the going got tough. I was literally sitting there saying, I'm telling you that you can have what you want but you don't even want it. All the while I know he's cheating, I'm still trying to get him to see his folly.

    Then I noticed that he can turn off and on his crying like nothing happened. He was sobbing during that meeting and when I informed him I had disposed of some of his favorite objects that he abandoned at our home he just stopped. He is very materialistic and loves the things he collects. More than he loved me obviously. When I informed him I was ashamed and had gotten so angry about the cheating he didn't care about my excuse. He stopped sobbing immediately, told me to "go f**k myself" and flipped me the bird and left.

    I was shocked. I could only think I married a mentally ill person. I didn't even cry. I was scared. I kept thinking how did I stay with this person for 3 years. How did they pull the wool over EVERYONE'S eyes. He never ever ever treated me like that before. In fact I never saw him cry before this stuff started. Nobody understands what he is doing or why. Everyone is shocked and everyone has sided with me. I've been told many times I'm lucky it happened after 2 months of marriage and not many many years.

    That being said, I'm still holding out hope it's a brain tumor. Unfortunately, the man has the ability to charm my socks off.

  • Comment Link Serenity granted Wednesday, 03 August 2016 13:32 posted by Serenity granted

    Of all the stories I have read since figuring out this whole narcissist bit, yours is almost identical with mine. I have always tried to explain to my friends that " I don't know, he isn't leaving so he must want to stay, but he seems to have a problem for every solution I had". I have never been so detatched from my own brain before to the point of always admitting myself. I now see: I just loved a crazy person. I spent 20 yrs with crazy.. And my poor kids. I finally seem to ruminate less and have a stronger sense of self and i feel more grounded, but for a while, I was very worried about my well being. Words can't express my connection to what you have been through and I am very genuine when I say I'm sorry you have come across one. Stay strong!! Ur story helps validate my life. Peace xo

  • Comment Link Serenity granted Wednesday, 03 August 2016 13:20 posted by Serenity granted

    He only wanted the opposite of what I wanted.. That sentence

  • Comment Link Tania Tuesday, 21 June 2016 09:42 posted by Tania

    I have just stumbled across this as I'm struggling so much right now with my divorce and the way my ex is being and I'm so glad I did, it is like reading about a part of my life. Thank you, it gives me strength to believe I can get through it.

  • Comment Link beverley456guy@btinternet.com Tuesday, 24 May 2016 19:11 posted by beverley456guy@btinternet.com

    My husband of 30 years ran away one night and never came back! He got engaged 3 weeks later. I thought we were happy! He hasn't seen his grown up daughter since! That was four years ago!

  • Comment Link Poppy Saturday, 16 April 2016 05:41 posted by Poppy

    Hello Robin
    I am so sorry to hear your story and all I can say is please be as strong as you can, and hang in there. Perhaps you do need to go to counselling, first on your own to explain the situation, and then with your daughter.
    I am in a similar situation - married for 38 years so my children are adults and the impacts are less on them. My spouse (a lawyer!) tried to steal, forge my signature and is currently trying to extract all possible money from me before he moves on with the girlfriend for the past two years. I have done more for us financially than he ever did, so I am outraged at his self delusion - he actually said to me I have not stood by him as I should have, during our marriage! The insanity is theirs and not ours. I can only handle it by essentially considering the person I thought was my spouse has died. The stranger who looks like him is actually someone who is horrible.

  • Comment Link Robin Tuesday, 05 April 2016 13:42 posted by Robin

    21 years of marriage, 2 children 19yo son and 14yo daughter. I was diagnosed with cervical cancer October 5, 2015. Three weeks later discovered husband was having affair from an out of the blue intuititive feeling. After checking phone records he had only been communicating with her since September. He said he didn't want to be married any more. I had a hysterectomy to remove the cancer but a positive lymph node was found and I just finished 5 weeks chemo and radiation (5 days a week radiation and 1 day a week chemo). He left me to go through this on my own I am so hurt and angry. I am also hurt that he not only left me but he left our daughter as well. He does call her most days but I worry what this will do to her and her future trust in men. She loves him dearly. I am struggling with being a single parent. Every time she doesn't get her way she threatens to go live with him and his girlfriend (and her 5 year old son and child to be, which is not my husbands). This hurts me so much. I feel so alone and heartbroken as well as tired and sick from my treatments. My son is away at college so I try not to involve him in this so he can focus on his studies.

  • Comment Link michele tvedt Monday, 28 March 2016 00:50 posted by michele tvedt

    omg!!! going thru that exact same thing!!!!!

    one problem I have no support!

    I wish I had a little girl power!

  • Comment Link Zanna Thursday, 25 February 2016 11:32 posted by Zanna

    23 years of marriage with 2 beautiful boys, I got a message on my mobile to say it was over! Promised not to 'screw' me in the divorce process and give me anything i wanted and then the trouble started. Deceiptful, lieing, bad mouthing, stealing money, extravagant lifestyle, refusing to pay maintenance and so on. There was a chick on the side who was coming to a very 'wealthy' man or so she thought hence he had to become this person to afford her lifestyle. Told my boys to pull on big girl pants and deal with the situation ......
    Is his head right or has something gone a miss?....

  • Comment Link Martha Wednesday, 16 December 2015 21:40 posted by Martha

    I don't have any idea if my ex was a "narcissist." I got married before I had lived on my own at all. I moved in with my ex directly from my parents home. I know this has something to do with me feeling somewhat lost and helpless right now.

    We were married 25 years -- we have 3 adult kids together. We had a good marriage, I thought, but he was distant emotionally and I overspent.

    When our kids became young teenagers, we fought a lot. It seemed that he was taking their "side" making me the "evil strict mother." I felt that he undermined me and created disrespect from my kids.

    When we would fight, I would threaten divorce, which I know now was a very bad idea but I was so frustrated with our lack of communication, I didn't know what to do or say. It was just me "venting."

    I couldn't persuade him to go to counseling, he said all psychologists are quacks and a waste of time. So we just endured. I think he had decided to divorce me but waited until our kids were older so he wouldn't have to pay child support.

    When he lost his good job, things really went downhill. I've never had an easy time finding a job that fits and most jobs I'm comfortable in don't earn enough to live on.

    He took a job out of state to pay the bills and I saw the writing on the wall. I tried some full time jobs and none worked out. I either was fired or was so stressed I quit.

    Then we got in an argument over the phone one day when I found out he had encouraged the kids to drive across the country to see him. I mentioned my concern with the dangers of driving like that and trying to do it without stopping at a hotel. I said let me buy them tickets instead; I don't want them driving like that. He flipped out and said I tried to 'control everything,' and it "didn't matter because we WERE getting a divorce."

    I said, "We are? I didn't know that." I started crying uncontrollably and begged him not to but he was clearly firmly decided.

    So I was served with papers (he was "kind" enough not to have the sheriff serve them and had someone else drop them off.

    We sold the house, the kids were over 18, and they all had to find other places to live because of finances. The previous two years, both of our older dogs became sick, cost us a lot of money, so here I was in a small place, no kids, no dogs, my life had been turned upside down seemingly overnight.

    I am still struggling with finding a full time job that I am comfortable with. I feel so lost and lonely. It's been 3 years since we were together and I thought it would be for lifetime.

    I feel lost, sad, stuck, confused, angry....... I have no health insurance but don't qualify for Medicaid.

  • Comment Link Shelly Saturday, 21 November 2015 21:59 posted by Shelly

    Wow,I needed this today.I left my narcissistic husband of 27 years in March. I've endured many text messages raging from I live you, you love me to outright abusiveness. I already knew that he had hooked up with another bird.. probably been going on for years.. yet on Friday night when I discovered that he'd had the bird he'd lived with in WA whist we were "happily' married. I got upset. I have no intention of ever going back to the torture.. just threw me that he could still affect me..

  • Comment Link Melly Friday, 30 October 2015 02:26 posted by Melly

    My husband of 5 years moved out 5 months ago at my encouraging to clear his head. After two weeks he basically cut all contact but, as I have recently discovered, started texting someone at around this time.

    Move forward four weeks after cutting contact & I get a text basiclly ending our marriage. Just like that. No explanation, no talking, no discussion. Nothing. Simply he was 'better on his own & needed to put himself first & be selfish'.

    He came & picked up all his things approx 10 weeks later & said he was happier & better on his own, it was too late to fix our marriage as he felt nothing anymore.

    Found out it was probably 6-8 weeks before this that him & the person he was texting moved in together.

    I went to a psych who after listening to me said he sounded narcissistic. I had no true understanding of what that meant but looking on the internet I found I could see a lot of traits/behaviours in him, our marriage & the way he discarded me so effortlessly.

    It's hard to believe that our marriage meant nothing to him, that essentially I meant nothing to him & that it was all just about him. It still hurts but the more I read about other people's experiences the more I realise I am lucky that it only lasted 5 years & not the 50 we had agreed upon.

    To anyone truly suffering go see a professional & let it all out. It's helped me find a starting point for healing.

  • Comment Link Dianne Wednesday, 05 August 2015 15:01 posted by Dianne

    Is my ex depressed or a narcissist. He is 53 and has never been married. We met two years ago and have had an on/off relationship. He suffers from all the physical ailments of someone who is depressed, so I feel sad for him and want to rescue him. He acts like a narcissist. He abandoned me three weeks ago and I don't know if it's because of his depression or because he has met someone else. Not knowing is what is killing me.

  • Comment Link Desiree Monday, 03 August 2015 09:44 posted by Desiree

    Why do I feel like my husband is just there to be with me but he really doesn't . And then when am mad he is smerking. Like he's up to something .

  • Comment Link Knyiesha Diva Scott Monday, 29 June 2015 20:16 posted by Knyiesha Diva Scott

    I've been divorced two years and I blame my ex's new wife for everything. I blame her for my hurt, for him leaving. I don't think our 8 year old daughter should be around her and him together. I tell my daughter everything, she knows. I wish she'd just go away.

  • Comment Link Laurie Tuesday, 28 April 2015 19:02 posted by Laurie

    Well, I know longer feel as if there is something wrong with me mentally. I met my husband when I was 17 and married him when I was 25. We were together 27 years and we have three children. The writers description of her husband is very similar to my husband's behavior except he was both emotionally and physically abusive to me. At first it was just the emotional abuse...very controlling and demeaning of me layered in with times when he was just wonderful, loving and kind. I never knew which person I would encounter on any given day or any given hour. Then as the years went on, the emotional abuse turned physical until one day when he tried to break down the door to get at me I realized I needed to end this nightmare. The only problem was I loved him deeply. He was not only my lover and my husband but he was my best friend. In the beginning it was everything I had wished and hoped for. It was my dream come true and it turned into my nightmare. I left him several times but each time he would beg me and promise that things would get better but they never did. Eventually, I got up the courage to go through with the divorce but even then right before the judge finalized the divorce, he begged me not to go through with it, made all the same promises to me. My heart was breaking inside because I knew he could never keep those promises so I divorced a person I loved deeply. I thought I would be relieved and that my life would become calmer more peaceful, that I could pick up the pieces of my life at 53 and move on. That was 7 years ago and that was no the case. The further out from my divorce the deeper my depression became. I missed him more and more and instead of trying to find a new and better life, I have been in constant mourning of the loss of him and my life with him even though I know that the abuse would only have gotten worse. I'm trying very hard now to find some happiness in the life I have left but I can't stop loving him and it's getting in the way of ever having another relationship. Which leads me to fear that I will be living the rest of my life alone and lonely. I hope that someday I can stop loving him so I can open up some room for someone else before it's too late.

  • Comment Link miranda Friday, 17 April 2015 11:06 posted by miranda

    Hi I've just stumbled across this website, been in an controing abusive relationship for 13 years, got 4 children, to him finally broken ties for good with him he doesn't live with me anymore, been about a month, still try tactics belittle me and blame game on me, feel frustrated he just wants to break me down, trying to look on the bright side i feel better that we aren't together anymore, but he's got the balls to think he can still control me, i know time will heal and i can be a good role model to my children now and live an happier life without him i makes me sick that there are men out there ike this and showing their kids it's alright to do it, is their anyone else that has advice to deal with these manipulitive people after you break up

  • Comment Link Coco Sunday, 29 March 2015 10:07 posted by Coco

    I am so glad I came across your story this morning. I have been married to my husband for 14 years and we have six year old son. My husband sounds a lot like your husband. My husband walked out three nights ago without any explanation. I have texted and he either ignores me, I call and he pushes to voicemail or he responds stop bothering me. I just want to know why he walked out and I know it's because he has to have the upper hand. He has often said the phone is for his convenience and no one else. Then one day I discovered he had reconnected with an old flame
    on facebook. He swore nothing was going on but I found out otherwise. He said she was the love of his life. He proclaimed how his life would have been better had he married her 14 years ago rather than me. His career would have been better even though he goes from workplace to workplace because he ant get along with certain individuals and it's always their fault, not his. He would take her calls in front of me and basically threw the affair in my face. He didn't care about me nor our son but she saw his true colors and she went back to her own husband. He couldn't understand why she broke up with him. I never saw him fight for me like he had for her. I was devastated but I also was able to change things like getting my own back account, he never allowed anything other than a joint account so he could control the money and spend what he wanted to spend. He initially had wanted a divorce and I had agreed but we had to live in the same house until he got his yearly bonus through work. Now mind you, he was going out every weekend and one night I get a call that he is in an accident and was very injured So I felt like I needed to stay and help him through it. He wanted to reconcile at this point and even go to
    Marriage counseling which was something he never agreed upon. I thought that maybe he had changed and the accident had opened his eyes. We went to counseling where he said he was sorry for the affair but then as we went to more sessions he started to change again and told the therapist that we shouldn't do any more marriage counseling until I worked through my own issues. The only issue I had was him but he didn't see it that way. He always would point the finger at my family saying that they were all messed up and judgmental but they weren't. He had also moved me 120 miles away from my family and looking back he had done that to isolate me so I would be dependent on him.
    So back to him leaving three nights ago without explanation, this is my wake up call to be done with this nariccist. He is throwing me and our son away because we are not doting on him and making him feel special. When he left, he left with a girl, 19'years his junior. The same girl who came out of the blue to help watch our son and puppy when I was away on a business trip. She cooked, cleaned, Walked the puppy, played with my son yet my husband praised how much she did for them in my absence. I asked him how he met this girl and said she had placed an ad in the local paper for pet sitting services. I do not believe him. I am truly done this time. Cried a lot yesterday and it wasn't for him but because my son asked when daddy is coming home and where did he go. I don't even know what to say. I know he will eventually come back but
    I want to move out of this house and just be done with this relationship. I am 38 years old and want a better life for me and my son.

  • Comment Link Mrs. C Sunday, 22 March 2015 04:29 posted by Mrs. C

    OMG! Smokescreen used words I had often used to describe my 23-year marriage to a man who walked out for vague reasons several months ago: "Mr. Toad's Wild Ride" and "Walking on eggshells." -- EXACTLY!
    So hard to put my life back in order . . . water under the bridge . . . money down the drain . . . I had the misfortune of meeting that man in my 20's, now I'm in my 50's -- and having to start over in every little way. What scares me most is that I think our society has created fertile ground for even more narcissists to flourish, woo partners, have children, tyrannize the home front, and then get bored and leave. i wouldn't wish that sort of pain on anyone.

  • Comment Link Janet Zeisneiss Sunday, 15 February 2015 07:25 posted by Janet Zeisneiss

    Certainly saw similar and disturbing similarities. Every story is different but the same. Not being aware of this personality type or experienced being married to one was confusing. Seeing this blog and reading that I was not always wrong or unfit was helpful.

  • Comment Link Sam Sunday, 08 February 2015 03:58 posted by Sam

    I don't mean to make light (25 years of my life) but riding away solo on a tandem bicycle leaving you crying with movie tickets in hand would make the PERFECT logo picture for narcissism.

  • Comment Link Joshua Dyer Monday, 24 November 2014 03:58 posted by Joshua Dyer

    Narcissistic wives perceive their ex-husbands as being narcissistic. It's called projection. My estranged wife told me I was going to leave her someday and then a year later she abducted our son from America to Australia leaving me alone. The feminist movement is breaking apart families and godless advice like that on this website will not give people peace. If you are a Christian, read the Bible. Go ahead and get divorces if you must but marrying another man is an adulterous relationship in God's eyes. http://www.beachyam.org/librarybooks/beliefs/marriage.pdf

    Here is some real life-changing advice:

    Titus 2:4-5 "Older women are to teach the young women to love their husbands and children. They are to teach them to think before they act, to be pure, to be workers at home, to be kind, and to obey their own husbands. In this way, the Word of God is honored."

    1 Peter 3:1-5 "3 Wives, obey your own husbands. Some of your husbands may not obey the Word of God. By obeying your husbands, they may become Christians by the life you live without you saying anything. 2 They will see how you love God and how your lives are pure. 3 Do not let your beauty come from the outside. It should not be the way you comb your hair or the wearing of gold or the wearing of fine clothes. 4 Your beauty should come from the inside. It should come from the heart. This is the kind that lasts. Your beauty should be a gentle and quiet spirit. In God’s sight this is of great worth and no amount of money can buy it. 5 This was the kind of beauty seen in the holy women who lived many years ago. They put their hope in God. They also obeyed their husbands."

    Repent and sin no more. Be reconciled to your husbands or remain single and alone until death do you part.

  • Comment Link kara Thursday, 30 October 2014 11:36 posted by kara

    wow amazing, I just cried the whole way threw your post. Thought I was all alone, It is the most degrading, horrific and painful experience there is. A feeling of Insignificance, your a piece of scum, I cannot describe it. It does help to know Im not worthless, needy and flawed. All I did was love him, I use to think I must be discusting, maybe if I just shut up, about my needs I will be loveable. and after he left me and the kids for a new supply my ex aunt I was stupid enough to think well maybe he might feel some remorse, or regret NO !! He got worse he has been so nasty trying to destroy me, telling everyone in my family that I have mental problems, and the only reason he doesnt see the kids is because I am a possesive, jealous, spiteful bitch,telling social security lies stating the kids live with him so we are left penniless and homeless. He has dumped them like garbage, and yes I hurt for them but that is just how he rolls he hurts people he is evil. Goodbye to bad rubbish !!

  • Comment Link Jane Friday, 12 September 2014 17:20 posted by Jane

    Thank you fir this article!

  • Comment Link clp Thursday, 12 June 2014 04:56 posted by clp

    I read this blog and all of the comments and my tears just stopped flowing from my eyes. I was living with crazy for so long and these stories have just reminded me that I wasn't the crazy one ever. he would make me say sorry or would fight with me because I cooked dinner, or yell at me because I wanted to spend quality family time. also the fact that no matter what I was going through his trials or issues were so much bigger and with more important than mine. I just can't stop reading these comments. my goodness I felt so alone dealing with for so long.

  • Comment Link CN Monday, 19 May 2014 00:28 posted by CN

    this post was very helpful.

    My narcissistic ex left me when in the last part of my pregnancy with my second child. He was having an affair and just 18 months later is getting re-married to another woman - not the one he had the affair with. He left me helpless, hopeless and still wondering what I did wrong to lose my family.

    He has dragged me through a hellish custody battle, bullies me all the time, and has no empathy for me or the kids. Just wants more time with the kids for his "new" family and their "new" mom. The kids don't understand - they are 2 and 5!

    He threatened to leave me so many times, found someone else and did. I tried to do more and more to get him to stay.

    It's amazing how a narcissist is able to have so many friends and family to back him up. They all turned on me, his mom told me I was "warped" and had to go find a new family (as I held my newborn).

  • Comment Link kim Friday, 16 May 2014 04:23 posted by kim

    I am SOOOOOO hurt…over and over…reading through all of your posts…when to ME …. You are BLESSED and lucky and fortunate and have so much. this is WHY about 98% of all the million blogs and websites for women wooing their pains from their exes…..WELL…98% have wonderful children and a sense of purpose.

    My narcissistic ex said at first we needed to date a whole year before discussing children; then one year of trying to work it out; then he said he wouldn't give me a child and less i committed to him forever and at some unknown time at his will he would decide yes or know on having children; then this went on longer after i left after another year in a half feeling that this was wrong of him; he then said he wanted to go to therapy to decide if he wanted kids; but that the therapy must be as long as he needs and that he will only go if I MOVE back in. I set a 10 session limit as I am dying inside not having a family. He never even seemed for a moment like he was interested in working through things with the therapist. he called me at work after the 2nd to last session while I was at work and over the phone said NO to kids. Then five days after we were last intimate; he was sleeping with another women..and the worst; lying to me about it. He was NEVER NEVER NEVER to give a shit about me again. Never to call me; never to FEEL remorse…never to care. It was as easy as opting out of pancakes and choosing french toast for breakfast.

    I fell in love with this charming man at the wrong time (35yr) and was with him until just short of my 40th

    SO FOR ALL OF YOU WOMEN that complain and feel sorry for yourselves. please remember that you Have all the time in the world to fall in love again. You have the wonderful gift of having your children…FAMILY.

    I sit at home alone; i drive alone; i go home from work alone. i shop alone. And I will probably never have a family. I want to throw up at the thought of trusting another man. How do i recover fast enough at my age; to even think of having a child.

    SO PLEASE … think twice before you dread your situation. and start thinking about your kids and focus on them for awhile

  • Comment Link N of BNE Thursday, 01 May 2014 11:29 posted by N of BNE

    lostandconfused that sounds absolutely traumatic and so heartbreaking for you and your family. Where are you located I do hope you have some support in the new town?

    Karma will come to him never mind that. Remain strong and dignified if only for your daughters. It is not a reflection on you or them, but absolutely of him. I would suggest contacting the other women he has children with as some kind of support if possible. There's noone else who knows better what he's like of course!

    Would appreciate if you could let us know how you're going.

  • Comment Link smokescreen Saturday, 26 April 2014 18:19 posted by smokescreen

    Thank you for helping me make sense of 23 years of marriage to a narcissist. Crazy making that never made sense to me from the beginning. Your story really hit home, especially the part about the narcissist "allowing" you to apologize.
    I started out in our marriage as a self confident independent 33 year old surgeon and ended up nearly losing my sanity from trying to hold on to a departing narcissist. The discarding phase began 14 years ago and it reminds me of Mr. Toad's Wild Ride at Disney World. My husband decided to rid himself of me when I no longer was a match for the beautiful young women eager to have sex with him in exchange for promises, jewelry, furs and sometimes just a ride in his sportscar. Looking back to the start of our marriage, the two things that I ignored were his pathological need for admiration from strangers and his NEVER admitting to one single mistake or wrong doing. I remember him taking me out to dinner as young newlyweds so that I could admit my faults and apologize to him for some ridiculous wrong doing that I could not begin to understand. By the end of the dinner I became so exhausted from trying to reason with him that I always said yes - its all my fault- just to have some peace. Because a narcissist only thinks of themselves, they will keep you very busy working for their future benefit. I was exhausted from raising three "perfect" children alone all the while walking on eggshells trying to keep up with his demands and instructions. His job as a surgeon always came first and yet he criticized me for not making enough money. It was as if I could magically be four people all alone; a mother, a housekeeper, a surgeon on call and a sex slave for him. When he finally moved out leaving me in debt and alone, it was actually a relief from the horrible emotional and physical abuse I had endured. Now I must move on to another battle- the unknown terror of trying to divorce a narcissist. Wish me luck.

  • Comment Link lostandconfused Thursday, 24 April 2014 11:01 posted by lostandconfused

    Help, it hurts. Moved to a new town with him, he's cheating again, walked out on me and our two children while remaining contact with a few of his other four kids from other woman he has done this to. We moved here for the security of our family as he deploys in a few weeks. Now instead of being with us, he moved us just to leave us. Our 8 yr old is crushed. My heart is ripped in two and his only words when I found about the affairs were a text saying goodbye. No other calls or text for me or my daughter's. And he knows I was suffering with ptsd, anxiety and depression from all the other episodes and promised it wouldn't ever happen again amd just like that he has erased us from his lives with no money, in pain and left unanswered while he enjoys his life as usual. When does karma come to play to teach a lesson? Its so unfair. It hurts. My family is gone. My future is gone.

  • Comment Link Pauline Monday, 14 April 2014 02:39 posted by Pauline

    After 17 years my ex left. It took awhile before I had it in me to officially file for divorce. I remember the quiet and the peace after he left. I didn't have someone manipulating me and trying to make my children quiet worshipers of his being. It was a painful journey to see the person for who he really was. He wanted everything about him and he really didn't want to actually help in the raising of our children. He wanted to come and go as he pleased, which included his little outings and vacations without his family. I think he left because he didn't want the responsibility that came with a family because it took away from what he wanted to do. He went ahead and pursued his dreams and I am have had the challenge of raising three kids on my own. What I have is the responsibility, yet all the memories.

  • Comment Link leoni Thursday, 10 April 2014 19:36 posted by leoni

    Brilliant and so true...my ex pushed me to the point where I asked him to leave after yet another huge argument instigated by him ..he was then able to shift the blame onto me and play the victim. He could not wait to leave in a very dramatic exit without further discussion or closure even though I had begged him to stay not being able to bear the thought of losing him. He went to live at his big sisters (where he had gone when he left his wife for me 5 years ago). I was in shock, my brain scrambled trying to make sense of how someone who I had believed was my soulmate and professed that he wanted to grow old with me had jettisoned off with absolutely no remorse or a backward glance. I tried to communicate with him to find out what was going on - he kept me dangling all the while his belongings were still stored in my garage, saying that he didn't know what he wanted, that he still loved me but could not live with me as I had become such an unsupportive, negative, person. After he collected the last of his belongings he immediately posted a picture of him and his new woman on facebook. I was stunned and felt as if someone had put a knife through my heart..I looked at the picture in horror - he was gazing sideways at her adoringly as she looked radiantly at the camera...it was as if someone had plucked me out of past photos of him and me in the honeymoon stage and replaced me with her...Final confirmation and acceptance for me that he is truly a narcissist who unfortunately I am still feeling empty and alone without..

  • Comment Link Hopeless Friday, 28 March 2014 04:23 posted by Hopeless

    I don't know if my ex was narcissistic or not. I would value your thoughts. He had an alcoholic father and an anxious, but, stubborn irish mother. He was the only boy with three sisters.

    We met at work, moved into together. He said he loved me around the world and back again, that we were like peas and carrots. But, he never wanted to do the things I liked to do. He never liked to do household chores. He had one hobby - film making. He would read and experiment and write endlessly. He had a part time job.

    We bought a house together. He got a full time job, but, lasted only a year. He moved in and out of jobs a lot. He got bored easily and hated the routine. He wanted to pay the house of quickly, so we had no money for life's pleasures. OUr life became a routine of working and sleeping etc

    I wanted to have a child. He asked me to choose between him or a baby. I chose him. I wasn't allowed any pets as he didn't understand them.

    He said he I was his best friend, I was the only person who understood him and who he liked to talk to most. He said he would never leave, that I was the reason he got up in the mornings. I developed depression. He didn't like my friends or family. He said they never talked about things he was interested in. OUr world shut down to just the two of us.

    He got a film lecturing job and began to work late. One day I saw an email from someone he worked with. It said she was sorry to miss his call. I asked him about it, he said it was just a work colleague.

    2 months later he rang me while I was visiting my family and said he was leaving that day. It was father's day. I was completely devastated. I never heard from him. It took me 6months to get back to work. Then he rang me out of the blue and said could we talk. He begged me to take him back. I still loved and missed him. I said that I would if he promised to talk through problems rather than run away. That I could not go through a breakdown again. He promised. He said we should have a bably. He said I deserved the world.

    My father was diagnosed with lung cancer. While he was in palliative care, my partner told my father that he would look after me and not to worry.

    I had a dream that he left me again. He said not to worry that he wasn't going to leave.

    Some odd things started to occur. He was an untidy person. One day he asked me to tidy up under the house. We bought containers and packed things and made the area tidy. He was never motivated to do things like this.

    Another day he grabbed me in a hug and said, what would it be like to hug a chinese person.

    One Sunday we went to breakfast. We were having fun, we went shoe shopping. He said he needed new shoes and new clothes. We were driving home when we stopped outside a servo. I asked if he would get a drink. He turned to me and said angrily "I am not your servant".

    I drove home very angry and confused. We got inside. He said "this is not what I thought it was going to be, I am leaving. I used to care for you, but, you've changed". With that, he left. He said he would talk to me later in the week. I never heard from him. Instead, I got a letter from his lawyer initiating the separation.

    Being a sensitive person, I went into a deep depression. I am still there. My whole life with him has been a lie. The person I thought loved me, actually hates me and wants nothing to do with me.

    On facebook it says he met a chinese lady two months later and moved in with her and her teenage daughter. They bought a house together. His mother called me once to talk to me about selling our house quickly. He has never spoken to me.

    I accidently ran into him when I was looking for another house. He saw me and fled, taking his girlfriend with him.

    I am confused. This was a person who I trusted, loved, admired. Whatever have I done to him to deserve to be treated in this way?

    Why won't my bestfriend even talk to me?
    What does he feel about how we separated?
    Why? How?
    What did I do?

  • Comment Link SharP Sunday, 23 March 2014 17:05 posted by SharP

    One day my ex had called. He wanted to do lunch and discuss if we really wanted to get a divorce or not. I don't remember what he said. But my thoughts were... No I love you. No I miss you. No flowers. No repentance. He doesn't miss me. He misses being in charge of me. Control was everything. He had built a little kingdom of absolute control and the children and I were his loyal subjects who performed for his manipulating pleasure. No thanks. I was done. You can eat alone. I like being without him so much more than with him. My new boyfriend is very patient with me. This is new to me.

  • Comment Link Phil Wednesday, 19 March 2014 23:37 posted by Phil

    I split with my ex girlfriend before Xmas, having read so many of these posts, this one touched me the most! Please know that it's not just men it's women too!

    Well done you x

  • Comment Link Sophie Wednesday, 19 February 2014 06:10 posted by Sophie

    I have been on a roller coaster rider for nearly 8 years. I used to be quite an easy going person. I didn't let the little things bother me. We have been through a whole series of living together and leaving or breaking up with each other. The very first holiday I went on with him I came home thinking I could not be with this controlling person. I should have listened to my gut then! I discovered that he had an extremely aggressive side especially when fighting. He calls it being passionate. He screams so loud sometimes that the neighbors 2 houses down can hear him. Then I run away. And so this unhealthy pattern has continued. I have been married twice before, but I am still very good friends with both my ex husbands. One is actually one of my very best friends. He is in a new relationship and his girlfriend is also lovely. In an argument he always, always manages to make me feel guilty, fearful and as if I am the one to blame or having irrational thoughts. Whenever I try to leave, he seems to have a way to manipulate me back, using my soft nature to his advantage. I am also to blame though, as I do not assert when I feel something is not right, but this is due to my terrible fear of his aggressive reactions. I have stood by him helping him through recovery from drug and alcohol addiction and now everyone else is lower than him. But whenever I have needed him to be there core me emotionally, he is nowhere to be found. He is trying to recover financially and is living in my house which I own on my own. He is skipping paying me, but he is showing his 2 ex wives how great he is by paying them on time every month and too much money considering he can't pay his other bills. My children are afraid of him and do not want to be around. My son chose to go to boarding school so as not to be at home. This was my final wake up call. After being married for only 4 months and some other incidents, I left my own home and he is squatting there. I have started with the divorce. He is once again begging and declaring undying love. I know he has retuned to his recovery meetings, where he had previously had an affair with one of the members there. I have to be strong now and it can't matter to me. This man has had the most unhealthy hold n me for so long, I have forgotten who I am and what I actually want from life. My next love affair is going to be with myself. Alone? So be alone? Miss him? So miss him. Cry for him? Then do it. It's ok. One day at a time, like I learned in so many of the meetings I attended with him. It's my turn for recovery. Thanks everyone.

  • Comment Link mirrah Friday, 07 February 2014 13:09 posted by mirrah

    Hi I have been married for 34 years and my husband has always been selfish self centred narrasistic ,and a workaholic he has caused every problem we have ever had in our marriage but never accepts any responsibility for anything , and leaves me to clean up the mess he makes of our relationship, never says he is sorry or promises not to do it again just ignores me until I go to him to sort it out, now remember I have done nothing wrong he has and what does he do when I try and sort it out, tell me how sick he is of me and he is sick of me doing this again as I am always doing this, he doesn't seem to realize that the reason I have to keep doing it is because he won't when he should, i was on anti depressants for years and unable to work i also brought up my 3 kids almost single handed ,now i only earn £50 a week cannot get another job so cannot live on my own, this is 6 weeks since he last caused a fight in front of everyone and i have had enough i don't want to speak to him any more but feel trapped, of course because i have not made a effort this time he has not as he is never wrong, he is now withholding half the wage as a punishment, because i have not bowed down to him this time.

  • Comment Link tara Thursday, 02 January 2014 16:57 posted by tara

    Says he's leaving. Tired of me doing nothing to fix the relationship. Every argument ends with him giving me a list of things to fix or else he will leave. I hid our problems for years. First time I spoke to someone they questioned his sanity. In my rose colored glasses I'd completely missed that he was narcisstic and I was codependent. I'd blamed myself for years walking on eggshells to avoid complaining, expressing my feelings or doing anything that would set him off. Such anger as he described how my feelings were stupid and I needed to grow up and stop ruining our marriage. Guess the years of him breaking up with me before we got married should have been a red flag.
    Sorry to hear so many similar stories.

  • Comment Link Melissa Wednesday, 01 January 2014 21:39 posted by Melissa

    Well add me to the list. My husband of 21 years left the house Dec. 1. This is really the first significant separation. He left in early Feb. for 2 days and threatened several other times. I feel like the stronger I become the worse he gets. He doesn't respect my boundaries at all. He's able to lie and manipulate effortlessly. I have found out about inappropriate emails to high school girl friend a few years ago and confiding with female co-worker when he left in February. I can't actually prove a physical affair, but he's had plenty of opportunity. He says he's done with our marriage and wants a legal separation that can be turned into divorce after 1 year. He says he's tired of my anger and bitterness? True we've had arguments, I think the deal breaker for him is when I asked him to work on his anger and control issues. And he doesn't see that he has a problem. He also doesn't want any accountability. We have 3 children. He's telling me his relationship is better with our kids than it's been in 4 or 5 years? He hasn't come over to see or talk to them in almost a week. Our 15 and 17 year old have cell phones. I know he may text or call but I try not to question them about it. I realize that his relationship or lack of with the kids is up to him.

    It's just insane to be married so long and to be discarded. Of course he denies being involved with another woman. How else does he just up and leave and say it's over for good? I wish I could prove it just to know. I prefer to contact him through email. Phone conversations do not work, just go in circles. It's upsetting and I'm more frustrated and stressed out after.

    Anyway I suppose this is better now in my early 40s than later in life. It's still difficult to accept that this person took marriage vows and treats me the way he does.

  • Comment Link trish Friday, 13 December 2013 01:01 posted by trish

    A liar can become so deceitful that they actually believe everything they say even if it contradicts what they said five minutes ago. A narcissist will want someone who will take all the ups and downs, the drama and the wrongs. Once they wear down one relationship, they will seek out another one to replace it. I know of a few men who said that if they were better looking and better off they would be wanted! They cannot see that it is their attitudes which stop them being wanted.

  • Comment Link JAC Saturday, 07 December 2013 08:01 posted by JAC

    Thank you guys for sharing your stories. I have been married to a narcissist for 25 years and have gone through so much with this man until I don't know where to start with what I have gone through and we would be here all day if I shared everything.

    Well, he finally moved out. I think for good. This is only the 5th time he has moved out. My children can't quite understand what is wrong with their father. The last time he moved out was around this time, right before the holidays. This man's can bring so much distress on a person until you begin to question your own mental status. After dealing with him you are left drained and depleted of everything you ever had. He does not care about no one but himself. I could never do anything right. Any problems we had was always my fault and never his.
    Although I don't have a desire to get back with him, I just can't believe that I am going through this after giving my everything to him for over 25 years. How do I move on? How do I start my Life over. That's where I am right now. I'm loving the peace I have right now, but I just can't believe that that the man I married could do me like this. Did he really even love me? We have a 13 year old and he has know relationship with her at all. And treats her like crap too since he's moved out. I'm just in shock. Oh by the way, did I mention that he is a pastor of a church? He has destroyed the congregation with his own hands and so many people have left the ministry. How do I go on with me Life and how do I tell those in the ministry that I can't sit up under his ministry while he tries to destroy me and everything I have. I love my church and the people there, but I can't do it anymore.

  • Comment Link Lost It All Saturday, 07 December 2013 03:19 posted by Lost It All

    Ummm, ladies, hate to break up the man hating session but women are just as bad, if not worse. I am gay, she was not. We worked together, friends for years. It was like she knew I was gay before I did. I became a manager for the company and left working near her. I had been married to my husband (who also was a horrific narcassist as well) she was married to her husband for 21 years. She came to me one day to tell me she was going to lose her position in her dept., could I help her? Sure, i loved my best friend. Unfortunatly as office structure changed I became her boss. At one of our training sessions alone, she asked me if I knew what lesbians did in bed???? Like I didnt knoe something was wrong at that point, she already had me hooked. Next thing I know, we are sleeping together. I break it off right away knowing this is wrong, now my best friend hates me so I go back to bed with her. I made her a managEr, moved her up at the company. She was beautiful to begin with but the higher up in the company she wanted to go, the sexier she dressed and flirted with me in meetings, everywhere, all day. Her position ended up being hire than mine. Then it started, cheating on me with a man. When I found out she cried Im so confused! I dont know if Im gay. I take her back. This time she announces she is leaving me for a guy. 6 weeks later she is back, loves me too much needs me back. So as we got engaged and picked outnour house, I asked my girlfriend to write our mortgage. All approved moving in 6 weeks. My mother goes into hospice. Im gone for a week and come back to her breaking up with me for my mortgage girlfriend. She did not even come to my moms funeral! They are happily (yeah right) together 7 months later. I have been laid off since. She is my bosses boss sleeping in our bed with my friend. No remorse for the cheating, not coming to the viewing. She DESTROYED ME!! Now Im starting to hear little bits and pieces of the control she has over her new partner. Everything I wanted that she would not give me, this girl gets. They play wicked mind games and are very sick. She knows what a woman wants from what I wanted and could not have. This girl is getting all that stuff to reel the fish in. Why? The new girlfriend is loaded with money. Its almost become a hoppy watching these nuts work their power over people. If nice, real people were not getting hurt, it would be comical. Best wishes to all above and all future victims. Read books, learn how to spot them fast so you can keep going!!!

  • Comment Link anita dougan Saturday, 30 November 2013 10:45 posted by anita dougan

    So glad I've read all this...my narcissistic fiancee walked out on me 2 days ago after a small argument...i've been putting up with this for almost 4 years! At one point he was walking out almost once a month. Sometimes he would stay away at his own house for 2 weeks and only contact me if I initiated it. He said I was Scrappy and used the phrase "no scrappy no walkee" if I asked him to stop. Even though all this was happening I still got engaged to him last year. But postponed the wedding because of all the walking out. Finally this week he brought home a laminated card to put on the wall in our room so he could mark down the number of "non scrappy days" I managed to have every week. When I found myself trying to aim for 2 "non scrappy days" on his chart I got really mad...thats when he called me a f###Ing lunatic...packed his clothes and left. I think he has another victim waiting in the wings...best of luck to her..im finally free.i just wish I'd had the courage to do it myself ages ago.

  • Comment Link winter beetle Thursday, 21 November 2013 00:31 posted by winter beetle

    Omg so many people going through similar experience, is sad, but at the same time I know I'm not alone on this. My husband is a narcissist, very charming, handsome and intelligent which makes him even more dangerous. I left my home country, family, friends, career, only to find myself almost completely destroyed after 8 years of laborious marriage. I been isolated from friends and family, and trying to recover my sanity after so many lies, infidelity, manipulation, abuse, you name it. One of his biggest cover up lies became out last week, he had an affair with a woman while in University (when we were dating) I was suspicious and he made me believe I was crazy, in need of a therapist to get over with that, and to let him go out with his friends overnight,The nerve! He debilitated me slowly by trying to convince me I had issues, and that I was a deeply perturbed woman, he reminded me this, each day of my existence with him (in one way or another) his behavior was always justified by saying I was crazy and never trust him, so he could continue having his one night stands and accusing me of destroying the relationship (inserting laughs here). He cheated on me with 8 women so far as I know, he says he is going to therapy now but I doubt it, narcissist hardly ever stick to therapy because of the nature of their problem ( inflated personality disorder) so who can know better than them?!. Be careful this type of men are pure poison and will suck the life out of you.

  • Comment Link Danita Thursday, 31 October 2013 05:54 posted by Danita

    My narcissistic husband just walked out on me a little over an hour ago, again. I'm tired. Being married to him is so much work. No matter what I say or do, no matter what happens, EVERYTHING is my fault. When he does something, it's because I made him do it (according to him). There is a significant age difference between us. We've been married 10 years. Today he accused me of staying with him for ten years so that I could get his social security. He also called me a liar and said that I must be seeing someone else. I make more money than my husband and the house is in my name. I don't need his social security and I have never cheated on him. He lies, steals, and has a gambling problem that he won't admit to. When we argue, he accuses me of doing the things that he is doing. And he is so vehement about it. I can't tell if he truly believes the crap that comes out of his own mouth. I've stayed with him this long because I always thought that at some point he would realize what he was doing, that it was wrong, and he would stop. Then things would get better. I couldn't accept that some people can be so devoid of feeling for anyone other than themselves. But I was wrong. I'm tired of being the only one trying to make things better. I give up. He walked out on me. This time, he can keep walking.

  • Comment Link Lori Saturday, 26 October 2013 07:10 posted by Lori

    @freedom you had me in here laughing so hard...this is true though. Men like this will drain everything out of you until you have nothing left...it's like they are parasitic and you are the host that will never benefit from the relationship. My husband of 5 years was the most narcisstic, passive aggressive man in ever known. I believe he gave me a degree in psychology without even going to school for it , because the constant mind games and manipulation will crazy make you. I just had to get out. Setting boundaries work, but you must expect consequences when dealing with this kind of person. They will do everything in their power to gain control. Us women need to stop worrying, because these men have have nothing to offer us our kids, or anybody really. So what are you losing...I know what I lost, a lot of headaches, stress, etc. it takes a strong woman to walk away from this foolishness. Run like forest and never look back...

  • Comment Link kheat Thursday, 24 October 2013 08:15 posted by kheat

    We are in the same boat, I am contemplating to leave a 25 year marriage with a Narc husband who physically, emotionally, financially abused me- I was walking in eggshells all those 25 yrs and he has been so unfaithful, with a bigamous marriage and now wanting to have another one- he kept on blaming for everything. For 25 years he separated me from friends and family. I don"t know why i was still asking him to stay when he said he never loved me for 25 yrs- I guess it is his spell and brainwashing, I need to do NC soon- I hope I will be stronger.

  • Comment Link madina munsoor Wednesday, 09 October 2013 18:42 posted by madina munsoor

    i have lived with a narcissistic husband for 8 years, i had to run away as he was expressing so much violence and hatred against me. the sad part is that my daughter is with him. though i did my best to get her back, i did not succeed. these people have no hearts, the best way to get out of their claws is to run away.

  • Comment Link Cari Tuesday, 08 October 2013 13:16 posted by Cari

    This hits home. Luckily II wasn't married to the man. We been together for four years. I'm still young, 28 and he is 25. But the blaming, the emotional abuse and blackmail with threating to leave, eventually he put his hands on me. And for some reason I still cried to him asking him to stay. We been broken up for a month now. And regaining myself is actually easy. I am in the psych and criminal justice field so one would suspect that how and why would someone who deals with this every day got involved. Its a slow process and then one day... you're deeply involved.
    I love the fact he is playing victim now. Originally I broke it off after two years of being together for many reasons. Eventaully we reconciled a few months later, talked marriage, etc. But he had to get back at me. Each time we ended he wound up with someone else. Now He's ignoring me. I did contact him a week ago for something relatively important and he told me where to go and how much I damaged him. I had to laugh.
    Anyway ladies, stay strong and keep healthy!!

  • Comment Link shirly chwalowski Monday, 07 October 2013 19:09 posted by shirly chwalowski

    Yes, I even adoopted three kids with him. He had all of us under his spell. I am divorcing now and have tried three times before but always backed down. Now I am going full force and I want out from his spell on me and my kids. Thank you for your story and to make me stronger. shirly

  • Comment Link kgagnon Monday, 23 September 2013 18:30 posted by kgagnon

    I'm amazed how this is my story too. The vacations, the leaving you standing in the road, the blaming, the emotional abuse, multiple affairs all denied and then how he completely ignored me. I finally came to my senses after 33 years of marriage, filed for divorce and left him. I hired a moving company to get out of the house all in a morning. I made sure to only take 1/2 of any items I needed to be 'fair' and get me started in new apartment. (Should have taken more.) He has been playing the victim card for 4 months and dragging out every step of the divorce. I can’t believe how much I just accepted as normal marital relationship challenges when dealing with his narcissist and passive/aggressive personality. I’m healing but need divorce final before I can complete the break.

  • Comment Link Freedom Sunday, 22 September 2013 13:09 posted by Freedom

    OMG...... You've told my story..... everything I experience in my marriage in the last 20 years, OMG. But I took to the initiative to get the heck out to save my own sanity. Yes, I walked away and proud of it... enough was enough. I left the house I thought was my dream house. I told my adult children my new address but refuse to stay under the spell of the devil. I can't tell you how many times I felt sorry for him and felt like I needed to make sure he was going to be ok. My children stop speaking to me. They became angry towards me but I pressed on. I have to prove to myself I can make on my own...OMG, you just don't know the hell he put me through. I had to change my name to Freedom...meaning....free al last great God almight I'm free at last...No one never told marriage with narcissist would cause me to run like forest.... Run Forest Run and don't look back... I pity the fool who is in his life now because she thinks she hit the jack pot..LOL nope a crack pot full of manipulation and mind games searching for who he can devour. Its just a matter of time when his narcissism sets in again and strike like a predator... He is a predator. OMG..Soooo glad he is not the head of my household anymore...Forgive me God for divorcing but I rather you forgive for a divorce instead of murder..