Before I start, please can people not comment saying "you need therapy" or "you need to look at yourself". I am receiving extensive therapy and treatment for why I let these people in and I know why I do it, because my father is a narcissist and therefore I seek out emotionally unstable partners. I am working on things. And i am trying, I wanted to share my story so others can recognise the signs and maybe feel like if they wanted to share theirs it might help them. This relationship went on for almost 2 years.
Hi, I don’t know who is reading this but I needed to write this out because I felt like my brain was going to explode if I didn’t get my story out somewhere. There is no where sufficient online to post about my experience and what I have been going through in the last few weeks so I’m just going to type this up on Microsoft word. The narcissist’s name is Mr. X (I don’t even want to type his name out because it gives me flashbacks). I’ll go from the start. So, I’m 26 years old and 2 years ago…. I got out of an emotionally (not physically) abusive almost 2-year relationship with a man who was almost 10 years older than me. Long story short….it ended by him leaving me in hospital, unsupported, while I was having numerous biopsies to find out if the tumours I had found in my bones were cancerous or not (I was a medical student then). I had to wait 3 weeks for the results and I was not supported nor shown any sympathy during this period of time by my PREVIOUS partner, and actually told by that individual I was most likely making this up “for attention”. He refused to come to hospital for any of the urgent scans, or results appointments etc etc. Anyway, that was finally the realisation that I needed to end the relationship with the former narcissist. I found out after that he was actually cheating on me with another girl as well to make everything worse. After begging for his sympathy and love and to even come and see me for WEEKS…I gave up and I told him to never speak to me again. I felt empty and broken for around 3 weeks. I remember lying on my bed crying for hours on end, even ringing my mum to come to University (which was a 2-hour drive) to come and comfort me because I was in so much emotional pain and worried for my health and felt so alone...none of my friends could comfort me sufficiently at all. Thankfully, these tumours turned out to be benign thank goodness and get monitored now every year by a specialist. However, I remember going to university (studying full time medicine) and literally being on auto-pilot, sitting in lectures not even listening to the lecture but staring into space wondering what I did wrong, blaming myself (maybe I was too needy, clingy, expecting too much from a partner....the list goes on). I sought out help from university welfare but it didn't help much so I paid for a private councillor which helped me a lot. I had to post on here to cope with the break up so you can look back at previous posts i've made.
After 3 weeks and the news that my tumours were benign, I decided to muster up the courage to go on an online dating app “Tinder” as I felt so empty on the inside after this experience. I think a huge part of it had to do with the fact i'd been an athlete previously and I felt since being diagnosed with these tumours that my body was broken or damaged and I had subconsciously taken a huge hit to my confidence and self esteem as I am facing a huge operation in the future potentially. Anyway, the second or third night I went on there out of boredom and loneliness, I saw a handsome, blonde 23-year-old named Mr X. He was the only one that stood out to me on there out of a range of men, and I reached out to say “Hey, would you like to go out to dinner tomorrow night?” (I had a new found confidence since I was told by the doctor that I may have had cancer at one point so thought, it, why not?!). He agreed, and he picked me up the next night and we went for dinner at a steak house. I was nervous when I got in the car and from the side view I was a bit sceptical of his looks but I thought id give it a chance. As soon as I laid eyes on him in the restaurant (we went for drinks first in the bar area), I felt an instant connection. I was fascinated by his every word and I didn’t feel awkward at all. He paid for all of my drinks and then we proceeded to have dinner. There were no awkward silences and I felt like I found my perfect man. We stayed at the restaurant until around 11pm when it shut and we got asked to leave and were the last couple in there as we were speaking for so long we didn’t even realise the time and he payed for everything (it was a very expensive meal) He asked me if I wanted to go on another date the next night (Saturday) which I thought was a bit odd and intense however, I agreed to it as I really enjoyed his company. At this point, I didn’t even really consider the conversation that we had had that night until after the relationship has ended. On our first date, this individual informed me that he had tried to take his own life a few months prior, and that he was admitted to a psychiatric unit. He informed me that he said to the psychiatrist that he felt fine and was discharged from the unit and psychiatric care but placed on an antidepressant. He informed me was doing well at present and this was all behind him. Looking back, bit intense for a first date and probably a red flag. But, I ignored it….why? I have no idea.
The second date was slightly awkward. We went for drinks, and this individual spoke about his father all night and how he abused his mother and his sisters when he was a child, and how he has no contact with is father and ‘wishes he was dead’. I remember he didn’t really speak that much this night and I felt slightly awkward in his presence but continued to make conversation and was taken away by how handsome he was. We then went back to his house where we had a conversation about how much we had in common for around 2-3 hours and watched some t.v. and had more drinks. We then had sex, and I remember he struggled to get an erection and said it was due to his medication (antidepressants). The next morning, I got dressed and said right I will see you when I see you then and he disagreed firmly with me and said no we’re going for breakfast. We then went for the most awkward breakfast in the history of breakfasts and he informed me that he had deleted Tinder and that he really liked me so I was quite taken aback by this after how quiet he was that morning. I said that’s a bit weird deleting tinder you’ve known me 2 days, do you not want to see other people? He said no he didn’t and he wanted to try things with me and when he does do things he does them “seriously” and not half arsed. I reluctantly agreed to this (have no idea why again….) and said I’ll see him in the week after our breakfast was finished.
We saw each other most nights of the week for the next few weeks. I remember him texting me a few times telling me he was “in a mood” and didn’t want to see me that night, but never specified the reason. However, I was busy with uni so I didn’t pay too much attention to it. He then told me he loved me after around 3-4 weeks of knowing me over the phone one night flippantly at the end of a conversation as if I wasn’t to notice it. I said I loved him too. He then gave me a key after 6 weeks of knowing me and said I was welcome there whenever I wanted. He then asked me to move in after around 2-3 months of knowing me and suggested that I was to give up my flat with my friends at University because it was ‘pointless’ spending £450 a month on a flat, when I was at his most of the week anyway (he lived around 1 hour from university). He also was 100% convinced that I was having a sexual relationship with one of my housemates and informed me he didn’t feel comfortable with me living there and would feel more comfortable if I lived with him. I agreed to this again (no idea why), I was just so infatuated by him. He spoke to me about marriage, kids, how he had finally met the perfect person and that he had never met anyone like me and that we had this soul mate connection and how we were going to “grow old” together and "sit together in rocking chairs". We went to festivals together, music events, the zoo, dinners, to see his family, to see my family, you name it, we did it and he paid for it all. He then bought me a “promise” ring around 6 months as he said he wanted to propose to me but it was too early….the ring had our names engraved into the outside of it and “I love you” engraved on the inside. This ring was almost £500 which pushed him into his overdraft financially. I was lavished with gifts, expensive flowers and cards all of the time, poems, cards with poems in, cards telling me how I am the love of his life and that he will love me forever until the day that he dies. It was amazing, compared to my last relationship. I have never been so in love with someone in my life. He even said he was planning on asking my dad if he could have permission to marry me after 10 months in, I was ecstatic that I had finally found the love of my life.
Then…. the devaluation started.
Looking back, it’s quite hard to pinpoint exactly when this happened as I believe it crossed over with the love bombing stage of the relationship. I noticed that when I moved in, although I knew he could be moody through text, I'd never seen it properly before. I saw the intensity of the mood swings. Some nights he would come in from work and be over the moon to see me, and other nights he would come in and not even really want to even speak to me nor have a conversation with me, never mind look at me. Whenever I asked what was wrong he said he didn’t want to speak about it and I “need to be comfortable with the silence”. These moods got worse and worse, and more unpredictable. The gifts stopped, the dinners stopped, he started volunteering to work away more and then not really speaking to me when he was away or acting cold and aloof when he did ring me. We would try and do activities together such as rock climbing but he would go the whole session without really speaking to me, and drive like an absolute maniac on the way there for absolutely no reason. If I called him out on his mood or asked to go home because I felt uncomfortable, he would go absolutely ballistic and tell me I was being too sensitive and needed to “leave him alone” and “people are allowed to be moody sometimes” and that I have issues that I should see a therapist about. He also would tell me that there is nothing wrong and I am imagining things and making up that there is something wrong (This is someone who would come in the house and not even look at me or speak to me and give me blunt 1 word answers when I would greet him with dinner). A couple of weeks after this he then ordered a gaming computer on finance (around £2000), and moved it into the separate room where he said he would go to “de-stress” from our relationship and me. He would sit in there for hours, all night, not reply to my texts or answer the phone to me sometimes because he was gaming and then if I ever asked him to do something even like take the bins out he would sulk at me and say “what?!?!?!” whenever I opened the door when he was gaming. I ended up doing all of the laundry, cooking, cleaning etc almost every weekend while he either slept until mid-day or was on his gaming computer. Bearing in mind this is the individual who used to get up early before work and cook me breakfast and make me cups of tea when we first met. This is absolutely unheard of at this stage of the relationship now. I’d be lucky to even get a ‘good morning’ before he walked out of the door to work in the morning. He was so withdrawn and moody, and every time I tried to understand what the issue was, he would get even more withdrawn and moody, proceeding not to speak to me for several days at a time sometimes. The arguments got worse, and then my panic attacks started, he told me I had psychological issues and I needed to see a professional because he couldn’t help me anymore. Every time I suggested to go to my parents house for a period of seperation he would point blank refuse that I leave and that "being separate wouldn't solve any of our issues". If I cried he would aggressively shout “WHY ARE YOU CRYING?!?!?!! JUST STOP AND THINK ABOUT THINGS LOGICALLY”. I remember trying to leave a couple of times and he informed me that he ‘doesn’t know what he’d do if I left’ and that he did not want me to go. So I stayed because I was convinced that he didn’t want the relationship to end and we’d try to fix things, and we always did. And every time we did, it was amazing for several days or a week at a time. And then the moods would start again. He would tell me I couldn’t’ see my friends because “who needs male friends”, he would tell me off for wearing make up and say I don’t need it, he would accuse me of sleeping with people at the hospital and then when I got upset he would say he was joking. This then all proceeded into a downward spiral of me trying to leave the relationship several times but being spoke into staying and convinced it was because of “lockdown” and “people aren’t supposed to spend this much time together, when lockdown is over it’ll go back to normal don’t worry”. So I waited, and waited and re-evaluated and re-evaluated hoping it would go back to the start.
Some red flags I noticed were that he’d always kick up a fuss and start an argument before something big in my life such as an interview, or an exam, or an important event at uni the next day. So when he decided that 3 days before my final final medical exam that he was going to leave and move out, WITH NO WARNING AT ALL, looking back, this didn’t really surprise me. He told me he was no longer happy in the relationship anymore and ‘things can’t continue like this’ and that he was ‘moving out’ and we can ‘go to counsellor to make the relationship work and stay together. He then proceeded to vanish off the face of the earth for 11 days and refused to speak to me (I didn't beg him to come back AT ALL, i simply said where are you and are you ok). I then found out he had rented ANOTHER PROPERTY in a different city and he said we need to live apart for a certain period of time....while he 'clears his head and decides what he wants'. I reluctantly agreed to this, despite the absolute emotional turmoil I was in. I noticed though in the 3 weeks prior to him leaving he didn’t want to do ANYTHING, he wouldn’t even kiss me when he came in from work, he wouldn’t hug me, or even have sex with me. He’d say he was ‘too tired’. His moodiness and irritableness got worse, however, I still loved him and didn’t really think much of it so I just continued to study for my exams and thought we would sort things out after my exams were finished as I was stressed.
He didn’t want to go to a neutral councillor. He wanted to go to HIS councillor who he had been seeing for over a year. I reluctantly agreed to this even though I knew this was wrong and it was all on his terms.....I did this as I was panicking and wanted to make the relationship work. I just wanted him back, I was in withdrawal. He would call me some days, text me telling me he loved me and wanted things to go back to normall.....and then other days he'd say he hated me.....and doesn't want to be with me...and that he needs MORE TIME and MORE INFORMATION. I couldn't understand what he was saying and he wouldn't even give me a reason why he left he just VANISHED. I let his hot and cold behaviour drag on for around 4 weeks with him randomly showing back up to the house with stuff and then taking stuff again and moving intermittent things into storage. I finally decided after 4 weeks to end it as he said he couldn’t make up his mind on whether he wanted to be with me or not anymore and said he needed a few more months of being ‘friends’ before he could figure out if he wanted to live together again. My mental health was plummeting and I needed to make a decision, FAST. He accepted the break up but said he wanted to remain friends. He tried to text me several times after but I blocked him from every social media website and call and text/app from my phone as every time he messaged me a neutral message (I believe this is called a hoover?!) I would go back to square 1 emotionally and ruin all the progress I made. I also was always hoping he would reach out and say he made a mistake…..or apologise for what he did before my exam…..but guess what THIS NEVER HAPPENED.
BLOCK THIS PERSON FROM YOUR LIFE.
DO NOT REMAIN FRIENDS WITH THEM.
THEY WILL USE YOU FOR EVERYTHING YOU’VE GOT.
YOU CANNOT BE FRIENDS WITH SOMEONE LIKE THIS.
THERE IS A CLEAR LOVE-BOMB, DEVALUE AND BRUTAL DISCARD IN MY CASE. And I just replaced one narcissist with another…. clearly…..4 years of emotional abuse back to back. My own fault, I’m not blaming anyone. I enabled this behaviour. And now I need to heal and be on my own and reflect on why this happened and how I can ensure it doesn't happen again.
Symptoms I experienced during withdrawal from this individual:
o Night sweats (worst)
o Nightmares about the individual
o Dreams about the individual (us being back together or him leaving)
o Raised heart rate
o Loss of interest in activities I used to enjoy
o Mini panic attacks
o Tremor in mornings
o Loss of apatite (lost about 8kg)
o Waking up early in the morning and inability to go back to sleep (3-5am)
o Social withdrawal from friends
o Vomiting (when the actual discard took place and he vanished off the face of the earth before my exam)
Symptoms have been present for over 2 weeks but easing slowly.
One common thing I note is that these 2 individuals showed the same traits of moodiness and also discarded me at huge points in my life (hospital biopsies, and also final medical exam). Has anyone else experienced anything similar? I'd love to hear your story!