What a Nightmare!
I have recently come out of a 7 year relationship with a narcissist. I can honestly say I had no idea what I was caught up in. I can't even remember when the devaluation phase started, I think I just got so used to my life being a permanent roller coaster that I thought it was normal to be in such a weird relationship.
Don't get me wrong, I do remember some of the good times right back at the start of the relationship, I truly thought I'd met my soulmate, we had lovely holidays, weekends away etc. I honestly can't pinpoint when it all started to change.
I remember fairly early on that I had 3 deaths in the family quite close to each other and my narc wasn't at all supportive. In fact, he didn't even come to the funerals with me, blaming work commitments each time.
I also remember being very ill myself and he was more concerned about coming home to no dinner for the third night in a row, he also threw his dinner across the room at me one night and I cleaned it up!
All those red flags that I didn't spot or chose not to. He used to ridicule my job saying it wasn't important and why didn't I get a proper job, I didn't earn much but I had to pay half towards everything even though he earned considerably more than me.
He would have nothing to do with my family but I was made to feel obliged to attend any get togethers with his family, he constantly put my family down even though they are all very normal compared to his dysfunctional lot!!
I've also had to attend weddings, christenings,and other special occasions on my own. we used to socialise as a couple quite a lot but then that changed and he started to go out on his own saying he wanted to catch up with the boys and have a few pints, I somehow had lost most of my friends along the way but cant remember how or when that happened either.
Then there were the arguments that somehow were always my fault, he would tie me up in knots so that I wouldn't even remember what had started it all. He would call me vicious names, taunting me and winding me up... I used to scream back at him at first but towards the end I knew I was wasting my breath. Next day he would bring me flowers or chocolates or wine or all 3.
He proposed on Xmas day infront of my son, I now know it was all an act he never ever intended to marry me. for the last few months he upped his game, causing even more arguments than usual, going out more often and coming home later and later, always letting me down cancelling our plans at the last minute, never took me anywhere, didn't do a thing around the house deliberately making a mess for me to clean up.
Eventually I told him I'd had enough and was leaving. 2 weeks later he asked why was I still here! I then said I wasn't going anywhere and he was. he then proceeded to make my life Hell for another 2 weeks before eventually walking out and leaving everything apart from a few personal belongings behind.
I naturally presumed he had someone else lined up which he denied, however, he literally went from my house to practically move in with his new supply just across the road from me. I know the woman as well. We hadn't had sex for 3 years because he claimed due to his diabetes he was impotent. I never made a fuss about it because I didn't want to embarrass him, how stupid was I?
In fact he hadn't shown me any affection for years, no cuddles or kisses no intimacy at all. Big red flag which I also ignored. I was constantly walking on egg shells and didn't want to upset him and cause a row, I tried to pre-empt situations trying to second guess what would be the right thing to do and what would be the wrong thing.
I didn't know if I was coming or going half the time and was constantly on edge and exhausted. I wasn't sleeping well, wasn't eating properly, I was a mess. He wore me down, trampled on me and spat me out.
He is evil, vile, cruel and I feel like I've been living with the devil. I now have to watch him flaunt his new supply around our very small village.
How on earth did I not see what he was doing to me? How could I have been so stupid. BUT I am glad to see the back of him, I am managing to put my life back together after this hideous nightmare that I found myself in.
In a way I'm probably luckier than some because I found an inner strength from somewhere and was determined not to back down, I made him go which I know is what he really wanted anyway but I can imagine how desperate some people get and just walk away themselves with probably nowhere to go, no belongings and no friends to call.
I'm on the road to recovery and wish everyone who has the misfortune to get caught up with one of these creatures all the luck in the world because you are going to need it to come out of the other end with your sanity intact!