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#16891 - 03/05/17 10:01 PM At least he is dead
gratefully_widowed Offline
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Registered: 03/05/17
Posts: 6
There's so much to my story, and I'm scared to put it all down.

He's not coming after me. The dark triad psychopath I was married to for the best part of 30 years, without any idea of the evil within, is dead by his own hand, and I am very gratefully a widow.

It's prying do-gooders who I don't want to find any details and decide that it's my story, and I'm keeping this at a pretty high level.

Gaslighting. Enormous unsecured personal debt. Sex workers. Mistresses. Child abuse against my kids I knew nothing of - and my poor daughter assumed I knew. Pedophilia - not his own children, but that's no consolation. I strongly suspect gambling but have no evidence except for the huge debt and some odd behaviours in the last few years of his life. Isolating me socially from all I knew. Instilling social anxiety in me, so bad that a trip to the supermarket became impossible, and I have a morbid fear of social media, enough to cause a panic attack. Beating down my self esteem to the point where now, some 18 months after he took his own life, I feel so inadequate as a human being I am embarrassed to draw breath, feel like I don't deserve food, and am developing an eating disorder.

I've seen a number of psychologists over the time since he died, some provided to me through work, one I was referred to by a friend, and another by my doctor. If anything, I think I am in a worse state after their "help". A clinical hypnotherapist helped a bit, for a while, but it seems to be a bigger problem than hypnosis can help with.

None of the psychologists seem to actually have any handle on what I have been through, or what I am going through, and my family doctor is scratching his head trying to understand how gaslighting works, and how I didn't see though my husband years ago.

The only social group I had told me to "come back when you've recovered" because apparently I was upsetting a woman whose husband died of cancer the day before mine offed himself, because my style of grief wasn't considerate of her. I did read the book "Liberating Losses", and have a better understanding of their response to my grief, but that hardly helps. My reaction to the death of my husband, such as he was, was as valid as her reaction to the loss of hers. I did celebrate surviving the 12 month anniversary of his death with a very good bottle of French Champagne shared with a dear friend who is terminally ill, and it was an awesome afternoon.

I have no extended family support either. My father was an violent alcoholic Psychopath, my mother was his alcoholic enabler, and my brother (who I believe to be like my father) has recently been threatening me because I wasn't afraid to speak the truth about my father after he died recently. I didn't compromise my wellbeing by going to his funeral, either.

I needed to come to somewhere that people have some understanding of what I've been through and am still going through. It's been like a 15,000,000 piece jigsaw puzzle with no picture, and a lot of missing pieces. I think 18 months on, there's now just a few edge bits and a couple of holes to fill - but that may never happen.

All his stuff is gone. I have changed the house to suit myself and the kids, and it's vastly different than when he was here. My lawyer (my absolute hero) fixed all the matters arising, and the debts just went away. I should have a clear runway at my future, but I'm bogged.

How do I pull myself up from this? I seem to be going down further into an abyss. I want to get moving on, but the constant trickle of revelations of what he was up to seems to have had me stuck. I have worked out more of what he was doing in the last 2 days - and it's coming onto 18 months now.

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#16892 - 03/11/17 07:41 PM Re: At least he is dead [Re: gratefully_widowed]
DadofRad Online

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Registered: 07/18/14
Posts: 99
I will not say I'm sorry for your loss. I am glad that you are free of him. Unfortunately it is not as easy to be free of the fear, lack of trust, wounds, and regret from all he has done to you and your children. No one can really understand what you have been through except a fellow victim. It is too easy to rationalize, blame the victim, or judge you.

Know that the wounds you hold and the lessons you have learned do serve a purpose, if nothing else than to help you recognize a psychopath in your life or the life of someone you care about. You understand something about mental illness that only our elite group does -- there are people who are brilliantly manipulative, have no conscience or empathy, but can pretend they do and even fool most professionals. You have an ability to recognize that, which puts you ahead of many psychiatrists (not that they will listen to you).

I would only recommend that you continue to reach out and live again like you did with the champagne. Rediscover the things you love and do them with people you trust. There is a song I love "tell your heart to beat again". Listen to it on YouTube. There is a powerful video with it too.

I am also learning to stop obsessing about my psychopath. I have learned that thinking about him only feeds my pain and sorrow. I constantly want to figure this out and solve this puzzle, but finding out what he is and getting him out of your life is as much as we can hope for. I am learning to consider certain thoughts poison to my soul. One of those thoughts is thinking about my son. Someone once said, I think it's from the book the socio-path next door, the best revenge you can get on a psychopath is living a happy life. If he gets you down, and keeps you down, he wins. As we know, its all about the game to them.


Edited by DadofRad (03/11/17 08:23 PM)

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#16893 - 03/23/17 05:36 AM Re: At least he is dead [Re: DadofRad]
gratefully_widowed Offline
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Registered: 03/05/17
Posts: 6
Thanks for the reply. I agree that it does serve a purpose.

I have saved a friend from a marriage to a Psychopath, before the fact. She's caught on to his nature after a lot of prodding and provision of literature by me over a period of weeks to months - only to have her mother, a retired psychologist take one look at his emails and categorise him the same.

I'm still struggling along. It's been a very bad week for my mental health. Suicidal thoughts because I feel so inadequate as a person. I had a psych appointment this morning, it seemed to help for once.

The eating disorder has morphed a bit into Protein Sparing Modified Fasting, which is better than Anorexia, and I have some body fat that needs to go, so for now I am working within the rules of PSMF, but if I get low in body fat and am still dysfunctional, I'm going to need more targetted help.

I have had to take a restraining order against my brother. I believe he is every bit as much a Psychopath as my father was. I really don't need more rubbish from my family of origin, but they are toxic, so what else would they do? Apart from blame the victim, which they are highly skilled at.

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#16894 - 03/26/17 06:38 AM Re: At least he is dead [Re: gratefully_widowed]
DadofRad Online

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Registered: 07/18/14
Posts: 99
You had a husband, brother, and father who were psychopaths? How did you get so lucky?

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#16895 - 03/26/17 06:27 PM Re: At least he is dead [Re: gratefully_widowed]
Dianne E. Offline

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Registered: 11/15/02
Posts: 2764
Loc: United States
Hi gratefully, if you are having suicidal thoughts I strontly suggest you seek professional help. We take claims like this very seriously and this really isn't the place to be if that is really what you are going through. Please get some help and I wish you well.

Di

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#16896 - 03/27/17 07:32 AM Re: At least he is dead [Re: Dianne E.]
gratefully_widowed Offline
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Registered: 03/05/17
Posts: 6
I wasn't mucking about. Last week I was in one hell of a mess. I was frequently retreating to the ladies at work and crying, with intrusive thoughts. I probably ought not to have been at work, but being at work and doing my usual stuff like gym etc had me with other people, so "safe", under "supervision".

I saw my psychologist on Thursday, she seemed to earn her fee for once, and I am back to her again on Thursday this week too.

I have since sought further assistance from some specialised trauma counselling services. To be honest, just having the person on the end of the phone take me seriously helped when I called. Unfortunately the waiting lists are long - up to 9 months for an appointment with one service apparently.

The restraining order against my brother goes back to court shortly. That is really what has tipped me over the edge from coping to not coping. I have engaged a kick-butt lawyer to handle the matter for me, I just have to stay the course and suffer the process, and probably the fallout from family after the fact. I think what has been so distressing is that he has trivialised and attempted to invalidate what happened to me as a child. My truth may be unpalatable and inconvenient for my family, it doesn't change the fact that it is my reality, and I am not going to re-write it to suit my extended family's demands.

I'm painfully aware that my 2 schoolage children rely on me, I am all they have. The dark thoughts have always been as a means of stopping the hurt, and not actually something I have intended acting upon, but they have been distressing me.

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#16897 - 03/27/17 07:48 AM Re: At least he is dead [Re: DadofRad]
gratefully_widowed Offline
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Registered: 03/05/17
Posts: 6
I am 100% sure that the abuse I suffered at the hands of my father effectively set me up for the relationship and subsequent marriage to my husband. By comparison, my husband seemed "normal", and he wasn't physically abusive like my father was, so seemed "good". My husband was so highly skilled that I only caught on to his real self in the last 12-18 months of a 30+ year relationship.

I left home as a result of my father's abuse before I finished school. My brother is much younger than I am, and I've never been particularly close to him. It's just in the last couple of months, since my father died, that his true nature has been revealed, and probably I've homed in on it due to the reading I have done making sense of my husband's behavior. He is every bit as bad as my father, except more intelligent, more violent, and better resourced.

I'm making very sure that I am not going to find myself in a relationship with another one. Know your enemy and all of that. Especially since we are drawn to a "type" that we're familiar with, and I am way too familiar....

I was actually wondering on the way home from the gym tonight - I have been lifting heavy for a while now, I'm looking very strong for a woman apparently. I wonder if having some obvious signs of physical strength will keep me safer. I don't look like a soft target anymore, but I still feel like my empathy could be my undoing.

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#16898 - 04/02/17 11:21 AM Re: At least he is dead [Re: gratefully_widowed]
DadofRad Online

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Registered: 07/18/14
Posts: 99
Thanks for explaining about your family. It makes more sense now. If you don't mind could you explain what your father did that indicates psychopath? Why do you think you only now figured it out about your husband and did not see it earlier? We have had a hard time living with our son, but each of us recognize psychopath traits quickly now. What do you think kept you from making correlations?

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#16899 - 04/03/17 06:58 AM Re: At least he is dead [Re: DadofRad]
gratefully_widowed Offline
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Registered: 03/05/17
Posts: 6
I'd long ago, as an adult, come to the conclusion that my father was at the very least sociopathic. My thoughts were backed up by a therapist I was seeing to help me deal with PTSD arising from childhood abuse, but I'd categorised my father that way to my family doctor some years prior, and he made me doubt myself. He's since come around to my way of thinking.

My father used to take immense pleasure in hurting both psychologically and physically. I came to the conclusion at around age 45, after suddenly waking one night remembering that I am very sure he gave me a date rape drug when I was in the ballpark 10-12 years of age and raped me, judging from the symptoms I recall in the aftermath - maturity of being a sexually active adult woman makes sense of things a naive 10-12 year old can't. I ran the scenario past both a doctor and a psychologist and they both agree that it is highly likely from my recollection.

He once slammed a car door on my head and then paid out on me for "faking concussion", but it was quite real, and I was around 14 and aware enough of my symptoms to be quite scared for my wellbeing.

I frequently attended school with black eyes. There wasn't the reporting obligations there are now. I was told by one counsellor "There there, Dear. Your parents really do love you, can't you forgive them". My mother never protected me, in fact when I was around 15 she had the gall to buy me dark purple eyeshadow to use. Charming. I assume the bruises around my eyes were inconvenient for her.

As an adult, I limited my exposure to him almost completely, and kept my children well away, however on one visit to family, he was unexpectedly there, and took great delight in abusing my niece in the same way he used to treat me, as a 2-for-1 deal. He got the pleasure of abusing my niece, and the added payoff of triggering my PTSD. He piled up a 6 y.o. girls plate with food, forced her to eat it under threat of a beating, and when the child had finished, bagged her out for how fat she was. I wanted to call police or child protection, but I would have put myself at grave risk had I done so. I regret not doing it now more than words can say - but I am stronger than I was then, and I was outnumbered by adults who were rather too well aligned to my father's way of thinking for it to be safe to do so. I never went back to that house after that incident.

He once put a puppy in a metal garbage bin, put the lid on, and beat the bin with a stick. I was 10 or so at the time. I had flashbacks to the incident when I was having an MRI of my head for severe migraine symptoms in around 2011. The noise triggered the memory.

I also remember when I was around 12 or so, and my brother, who I now believe to be similar to my father was a pre-schooler, I was sitting reading a novel on the couch, my brother came in, clapped his hands together loudly, started crying, and my father burst in and slammed me across the face. I wasn't listened to when I said my brother had set me up. I was beaten more for lying. This happened more than once. I recall being kicked across the kitchen floor because I was miserable with raging period pain, for which I wasn't given any pain relief. In hindsight I wonder if that was because my body cycling made it less possible for him to continue his drugging and raping me without consequences.

My father managed to do all of this, and somehow present a public persona that managed to have him nominated to run for public office sometime when I was in my late 20s. It made me quite ill at the time.

My family of origin is entirely toxic. And they set me up to believe that the Psychopath I met at 18 was a normal human being. I've come to a place where if you told me my late husband was responsible for apocalyptic genocide, I'd probably go "Yeah". My family of origin have much to answer for - and they don't think there's anything wrong with themselves, or how they operate.

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#16900 - 04/09/17 10:44 AM Re: At least he is dead [Re: gratefully_widowed]
DadofRad Online

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Registered: 07/18/14
Posts: 99
Thank you for sharing your story. That is some tremendous abuse you endured. I hope you continue to get help and support as you recover.

My story is of raising an adopted psycho son. You can read more on my post regarding adoption and RAD. He is being released now from his forth residential program to a foster home, because we refuse to take him back. Our fear now is that he may have gained control enough to fool the professionals, but still present a danger to my family. We too have PTSS, giving us fears and nightmares about trying to live with him again.

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