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Hi everyone, I've been a member for a year but haven't been

[165]

Hi everyone, I've been a member for a year but haven't been on since I joined I think. I recently purchased an Audible book about being with a narcissist. I honestly dont know if he is one or just obsessed with me. We have been married for 15 years. He was a great boyfriend, but changed immediately once we married. It was like signing that marriage certificate made me his property. I'm on permanent disability due to my back. Recently I mentioned trying going back to work and he came up with every possible reason why that was not a good idea. The only work experience I have is in a make dominated field. it would make him insane with jealousy for me to be back in that environment. I will apologize now for how kong this will get and how I'll jump all over the place with my thoughts. Just knowing I am about to tell people how things really are here makes me nervous, nauseous, glad, and numerous other emotions. I am mortified at how much I have changed. I was a widowed at a young age with a 2 yr old, worked full time, was independent, confident, strong in both body and mind. Now? I'm none of those things. He has gotten numerous raises over the past 15 years but cashes his check and puts the same amount in for the past 10 years. Never anymore. Due to my back problems getting progressively worse sex is no longer enjoyable to me. He knows this but still expects it when he wants it. If I say no, he says I must be getting it somewhere else. I'm also in my early 50's and have been done with menopause for 10 years. The drive has diminished for sure. He has frequently told me it is "my duty" to pleasure him in one way or another. One time when I said "not tonihjt we just did it 2 nights ago and I haven't recouped from that" he said well what am i supposed to do? You turn me on so much is it such a bad thing that a husband finds his wife so desirable?" Nope not a bad thing, just not good if it's going to cause the wife additional pain. I said you have a hand, use it. To which he said "I didn't get married so I would have to still..
....." (not sure what I'm allowed to say here but take care of himself is what he said but not in those words" it felt like he slapped me in the face. He's never been physically abusive, buy hes a really big guy and knows his size intimidates most people. He knows I am not happy. I haven't been for a long time. I told him once I wanted a divorce. I honestly was terrified of what his reaction would be. It was nothing like I was expecting. He fell apart. Crying. Calling my friends and family, a few knew how jealous he was and how bad that made my life and they couldn't stand him for it, but even they started telling me to give him another chance. he promised he would change. Wouldn't accuse me of cheating on him ALL THE TIME anymore. When our 2 kids were little I had to take them everywhere with me because he couldn't handle taking care of them. (He barely paid any attention to them tilm they got to be around 7 & 8) even with the kids with me he would accuse me of taking too long at the grocery store because I was flirting or hooking up with someone that worked there. He rarely steps foot in the grocery store (womens work after all, as is cooking, cleaning,giving the kids baths etc UNLESS someone was over. Then he was so helpful and attentive to the kids too) So it wasnt like he had seen me and a specific grocery worker ever even talking. He just accused me of cheating with anyone. As I've said I've been unhappy for a long time. But I didnt realize how much, or how much I had changed till May. I went to a wake for someone I used to work with 20 years ago. After the wake a few of us went to a bar together. (The spouse was at a meeting for a very important group he not only belongs to but is now President of. It has made his head even bigger. people kiss his a$$ even more. "Oh hes such a nice guy. Such a great guy. Your so lucky he talks about you and the kids all the time" are things I hear all the time from people he works with and that belong to this group of 600+ people) So he had no clue I went out that night. I was staying at my Dads that night since he has been ill. Normally the spouse would have been checking up on my by calling or texting to ask me where I was or what I was doing. Except when he is at these meetings or events with his BFF. Then he doesn't even think about me. So anyway, see I'm all over the place I'm so sorry, that night I talked and laughed for hours. I honestly forgot what it all felt like. I realized I was ME again that night and hadn't been ME for so so long. I miss me. I miss the real me. So about 2 months later I made plans to meet one of the women that was there that had been 1 of my 3 BEST friends till about 12 yrs ago. Boy when I told him I was going to meet her out (I had to stay at my Dads for 2 nights) since I was going to be down that way he wasnt happy. His first question was "are you bringing your Father?" Second question was WHY? Why was I going to go out with an old friend. He gave me a hard time about it the next day. Where did you go? You were out late (I texted him Goodnight at 11 pm) I explained we didnt meet till 8:30. When I got back home my Dad was still up so I talked with him for awhile, got ready for bed and then texted him and the kids once I was in bed. I realized I was explaining it all so detailed to try to appease him. I'm 50+ years old and went out for 2 hours and was made to feel like I did something wrong. I also realized that is why I stopped doing things with friends long ago. Anytime I had made plans he would "forget " and suddenly had to work OT so I would either bring the kids or had to cancel. Eventually I just stopped making plans. The night I was going to meet up with my old friend I told my 2 younger, early teens now, kids I was going to a bar for dinner and a drink with a long lost friend. My middle daughter told me the next day he said to her "you know your mother is out at a bar tonight " to which she responded yes I know. With an old friend. I hope shes having a great time. He was attempting to make me look bad to our child. But they have seen and heard enough over the years to know he isn't exactly normal. I cant tell you how many times he has interrupted me over the years. And never says oh what were you saying, I interrupted you or I'm sorry I interrupted you. But it was so often even the kids picked up on it and called him out on it. He just ignored them. He doesn't like to be told he did or does anything wrong.
Some day I have to get free. Some day I WILL break free of him. But I have to figure out how to save up for it. He will have attorneys volunteer their services because of his position in that group. I will have legal aid. He is also very vindictive and will get even with someone that supposedly treated him badly 20 years ago if the opportunity arises. He holds a grudge. Has a chip on his shoulder. Lies about how horrible his childhood is, his sister was flabbergasted when I told her one day what he had told me and numerous other people. She told me their grandmother would be heartbroken to hear these lies because between her and his mother they worked non stop to give them what they could. So that's my story. I wish I could have condensed it somehow as it's so very long. if anyone makes it to the end thank you. If anyone has any advice on how to somehow save up thousands when it's pretty much impossible I'd appreciate it

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[131710]
Sep 14

@SpinningFlower The truth is that deep down, the narcissist sees glimpses of the real self through the cracks in the mask, whenever he really looks in the mirror. Also whenever he hears a critical remark, someone disagreeing with him, or any negative comment. The rage is just under the flimsy surface of the fake image. It’s like he lives on the edge of a cliff, tensed and waiting for that one negative word that will push him over the edge. That is the high-level narcissist’s reality. But he uses every ounce of his stolen energy supply to keep that false image from caving in on him, exposing his true self. This is not a happy existence, no matter how convincing he is at trying to portray the opposite. In healing, the victim needs to learn that none of the cruel, rude, insulting, degrading remarks he spews out really have nothing to do with the victim personally. The reason it hurts as much as it does is because the words trigger, affect, and reopen her unhealed wounds from past abuse or trauma. The negative things that the narcissist says are only as painful as they are because deep down you already believe those things about yourself. When you heal to the point where you no longer have a damaged personal truth, and know that you have worth and value, the narcissist’s lies and manipulations will no longer affect you. That is when you know you are healed, and narcissists will no longer exist in your life. Trust your instincts, the voice of the true self, which IS the truth!........

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[6630]
Sep 21

@pickone I am sorry it took me so long to see this and to respond. I really appreciate your taking the time and effort to share this and to remind me not to focus so much on blaming myself. I need this reminder over and over again because the negative voice hasn't left my head, even though he's gone. I have to keep looking inward and not use what happened as an excuse. I feel a major set-back, but this reminds me it doesn't mean I can't keep moving forward.

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[131710]
Sep 21

@peacewanted You are very welcome!... It’s important to realize that the beginning of the healing process is the most difficult and challenging time. First because you’re not healed yet, and you haven’t had enough time to look back and see the progress you’ve made. You need to take these things into consideration, and not be discouraged before you even get started. Next you need to be as gentle, kind, compassionate, and supportive to yourself as you would’ve wanted your partner to be, if he wasn’t a narcissist. Don’t compound the effects of the abuse by being hard on yourself, and adding to the abuse you’ve suffered. Also remember that the healing process is not linear. It doesn’t follow a straight line where you just continue to improve. It takes twists and turns, a few steps back and then moves forward, and is affected by the usual ups and down stressors of life. These are not setbacks, they are a normal part of the process of healing and growing. Contrary to what many people believe, a negative period does not mean that the progress you’ve made up to that point is wiped out. Not at all, because every bit of progress means growth, and you don’t lose that growth once you’ve gained it. It becomes a permanent part of who you are. That’s why healing makes us stronger, and changes us for the better. So treat yourself like you’d treat a baby learning to walk. A few steps ahead, then maybe a fall, but getting up and continuing to move forward. I had a lifetime of negative voices in my head when I first started to heal. I had heard nothing else my entire life up to that point. It takes time, patience, perseverance, and a determination to find your true voice. Not the false voices of narcissists, and others that have no idea who you really are. In time the voices became duller and more muted. Then only a whisper at certain times when triggered. I’ve learned to identify the triggers instead of acting impulsively on the emotions they provoked. You can then control the emotions instead of them controlling you. It’s very empowering to understand what makes us behave as we do. It gives you a real sense of control, not the fake control that narcissists perceive themselves to have over others. Narcissists are totally dependent on others for their survival. They need the supply, but will never face the truth of that. Their control is fake, just like everything else about the narc is fake. You are fortunate that you’re the sole source of income. I think if I were in that position I would’ve been out of there a lot sooner. Financial dependence is a major reason for keeping people imprisoned in abusive relationships; that and of course fear. But we’re a lot stronger than we think. I’m sure you’ll do it when you’re ready, and we’ll be here to cheer you on!........

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