I was at my group today and the topic was about being overwhelmed. This woman in our group who was new there today was talking about some therapy she takes for her head injury and I asked her how did she get it and she said “Domestic violence” and my eyes widened and I said “whoa” and she said “from my ex husband” and I said “You must be a single mom” and she said “I am.” Then I asked her when did she leave him and she said 2007 and I asked how long they were together and she said eight years. then the topic was about abuse and she said she had a confidential address and I asked what was wrong with her husband and if he had any diagnoses and she said he was diagnosed with borderline, narcissism, and antisocial” and I said “he was a sociopath” and she said he was. She mentioned he was high functioning so he was nice and charming and I talk about how there are red flags that lot of women miss and she mentioned she thought it was her autism that made her miss them after I mentioned how I sometimes go online read about abuse and I don’t feel alone and I feel better about myself and lot of women missed these signs too. I mentioned one thing a abuser does to lure their victim is they will be crazy over you, they will be clingy and will always think about you and always want to be around you and not want you to go to work or go home and they will also pay for everything and shower you with gifts and everything and I also thought it was my autism that made me miss the signs but I realized lot of women miss them so it’s not an autism thing. Then she said how her ex will say he has great empathy so she is realizing it might not be her autism because he is tricking lot of people by misrepresenting himself. He is nice out in public and he works as some counselor for jail. I also mentioned sometimes abusers will play the “oh poor me” and act like the victims and act like their victim was the abuser. I also thought about my ex and told the people at the table some about him but he never beat me or called me names or threatened me or broken anything or thrown things and he didn’t like violence himself. I mentioned he was just controlling and he ignored me after we were together and then it felt like I was single because he never answered his email or phone or IMs. That is something abusers also do. It was an interesting topic and I am glad she got out of there. I didn’t ask how he abused her or what took her so long to leave because it’s a sensitive topic and lot of people don’t like to think about it and remember it. I read abuse stories online sometimes and feel lucky because mine didn’t last long with him and also his abuse wasn’t bad because others had it worse and their partners acted worse. maybe mine would have gotten worse too if I stayed and thanks to him ignoring me, he lost me. I would have left him anyway if he didn’t ignore me and he wasn’t the kind of guy to make his victim stay. If you wanted to leave, leave, he didn’t care. I was like a disposable to him. There are other women out there he could find. Someone replied to my comment in LuckyOtter’s Heaven saying if I didn’t care about the guy, his silent treatment was useless. Then she gave me her interesting perspective that it sounded like my ex ignored me and then contacted me to make me think he didn’t care. If he cared, he wouldn’t have contacted me but it was just her opinion based on what I wrote.
Now I wonder if he contacted me around Thanksgiving of 2007 to see if I was still single and I was not because he maybe thought I got a new boyfriend to play a game with him but saw I was still with the new boyfriend. i never heard from him again. But he was also confusing because of things he said like how he didn’t want to be controlling so he didn’t want me doing things because I feel I have to but yet he acted like he wanted me to do things by making me feel bad because he would say I was self centered or get upset with me. Another thing he did was he didn’t care if I wanted to live with my aunt and uncle so he would say “go” whenever I expressed it but yet he would care I got a new partner? He also told me a story about how his ex girlfriend would always threaten to leave him and take their son too from him and he would no longer play that game if I did that to him. I never talked about breaking up with him to make him change and it worked every time when she did it. But I did often feel like moving out and living with my aunt and uncle. Now my rule is if you often feel like leaving your partner, then things are not working out between you two. I wonder if he sent me mixed messages to confuse me so I wouldn’t think he was abusive and controlling. It sure worked which is why I stuck with him. I ignored my feelings and my instincts thinking I was crazy and being too sensitive. I felt stupid for a while and felt it was all my fault and now I am realizing it was not and this happens to many domestic women too. I was just lucky I got out quick and that the abuse wasn’t that bad. I didn’t know then it was an abusive relationship because like most women, I thought abuse was being hit or beaten. Because he wasn’t hitting me or beating me, there was no abuse.