Life post relationship with a psychopath

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  • #40328 Report


    Hi all

    I have read quite a lot on psychopaths and my wife, who I have left clearly displayed the signs of a psychopath.  She had no empathy, no compassion, openly hurt me and did not realise I was often in pain, she bullied me, controlled me and worked to distance me from my kids from my previous marriage . . so yes, twice divorced now . .

    I read that you rarely can change a person with those tendencies, so I took the decision to leave.  Many of my friends have been supporting but I worry on what effects living with this person did to me, and how I can identify issues . . and most importantly how can I make sure I can not allow her to damage me more.   Most advice is literally to run from people like this but I want to know, from others who left a relationship like this, how did they move on and get back their self esteem and also remove guilt on how they did not stand up and fight and say no in the past?  I look back and I was her project and she created this need for me to depend on her . . what she did by grinding me down.

    Its hard to write here about this but I am feeling more depressed as time goes by and I should be high on freedom . . but to be honest I was simply terrified of her and she had me in bits when I first moved out, friends say its because she knows my weak points and attacks those . . but sometimes I feel that she has gone physically but not mentally. . .

    Thanks to all


    #40331 Report


    Hi. I found this quite hard to read as I left a relationship like this about 20years ago. It’s only recently that I’ve been able to admit how bad it was, I spent a long time just wanting to forget about it all. In fact a few years ago I wouldn’t have even replied to this as I wouldn’t be able to think about my own experiences. I understand about the guilt you’re feeling. Logically we know it’s not our fault but I still think I shouldn’t have allowed it. You put up with it because you wanted to make the relationship work, that’s not a bad thing, you tried. There’s a lesson learnt and I know that I’d never let anyone treat me like that again. I hope you have plenty of support to get you through this.

    #40333 Report


    You don’t have to be in a relationship with psychopath, to have your self esteem destroyed I’m afraid. Or to feel guit. We all might be on the same wagon on this …

    How to move on it’s a difficult piece of advice. I for instance, cut all the ties with my husband. Our communication is dry and around children. I stated at the very beginning rules regarding finances and child custody (in writing). I am also going through Talking Therapy and antidepressants.

    #40336 Report


    I dont have any official labels for my ex as i am not sure it would help, although i am happy to call him a few names 😁.

    I do know that i will never have answers as to how he could have treated someone the way he treated me and think that it was ok, if indeed he did think it was ok and actually it was only at the end and after we split i realised how badly he had treated me with the mind games and he still tries to continue them to this day.

    I had a bit of counselling when i was at a very low point and because there are no answers, I have put all my thoughts and feelings into a little box that i choose when to open, or not, mainly not. I communicate with the ex via whatsapp only when needed for children.

    It’s been a few years and i dont know when I would ever feel confident enough in myself to judge someone as a perspective partner and i too am concerned about being ‘suckered in’ again by someone as naturally i am a very trusting open person and i feel these qualities lead me to be taken advantage of.

    I have been concentrating on keeping myself together and the children ok, but now all the legal stuff has finished (fingers crossed) i was going to start investing in myself and ignore the past and the future and just think about being in the present as i have shrunk away from people in order to cope, but now I want to start trying to form friendships with people so i can (when lockdown is over) start having a laugh again and feeling some joy.


    #40351 Report


    Hi DKRich

    I came across this article last week about dealing with narcissistic exes. It’s worth a read

    Sorry for long text. My worst relationship ended nearly 13 years ago. I dont think I will date again but I’m still happy 😀 its takes time but eventually you will get your ex out of your system

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