I have managed to find some time to sit down and write this for you. I’ve tried to keep it as brief as I can, although it is one hell of a story haha. It will be interesting to hear your thoughts on this and see if you can recognise any of the behaviour as being narcissistic. If you wanted to use any of these as examples then please feel free. It’s rather long so you may need a glass of wine or three first 🙂
I first met my ex, Nick, back in 1999 and we spent two years together at college within the same friendship group although we didn’t ever really speak. We became Facebook friends around 2007 and I was aware that he had a son from a previous relationship. Then in summer of 2013 I met him on a dating website, which we both found amusing as we were both not getting very far with it!
I had recently come out of a relationship several months before hand after discovering the guy I was with had been unfaithful, and since we split he had ended up having a child with the other woman. I was devastated at the time and felt pretty lost. Nick and I quickly struck up a friendship, albeit online and via phone at this stage, and we became very close. I talked to him a lot about how I was feeling, he was kind, really listened to me and I felt like he was someone I could trust. He also made a point of telling me several times how he could never cheat on anyone, never had and never would. As we had never really known each other before, I didn’t suspect that he was anything other than a fantastic guy and a fantastic friend to me.
He asked me out repeatedly for around 12 months, but due to me feeling pretty bad I declined. I also didn’t really feel anything romantic towards him, as I never had before when we were at college together aged 16. Then one day in around May of 2014 a friend of mine sat me down and told me I needed to snap out of this mood I was in and give Nick a chance. “Nick will really look after you” was the term they used. At the time, I truly believed this would be the case. I asked him out for a drink, not expecting to feel anything more than friendship, and we finally met on 8th June 2014. After a couple of hours in a pub together I could feel an attraction, which surprised me, but I was made up because I KNEW he was a good guy who really liked me, he was not a player, not a cheat, not a bad person at all.
Things progressed from there and I would say the first six weeks I was blissfully happy, he was wonderful and I really thought this was a long term relationship in the making.
One evening we were sat watching TV together towards the end of July and I guess this was when things started to decline. I can’t remember how we got on to the subject, but we started talking about children. Without warning he went off on an angry rant about how he didn’t ever want any more kids, one was enough, all relationships fail and therefore he didn’t want to be lumbered with another one. All his son did was cost him money and he didn’t even get to see him all the time. I was in shock, I really didn’t know what to say. But he was adamant in his thinking and despite several attempts to reassure him that I really had no intention of ending things with him, he was so set in his ways. The following day he kept texting me asking me if it was over between us, which I knew it was, although I remained in denial for another three months. Not once did he ever ask what I wanted for my future! He told me outright if I got pregnant to him I would have to have an abortion, for the simple fact he didn’t want any more kids.
He then told me about his previous girlfriend, the one he had his son to. He described the relationship as her using him as a rebound, they were on and off for six months and then one day she was just “gone.” He heard nothing from her for seven straight months until one day out of the blue, this girl’s sister turned up at his house and posted a letter through his door telling him her sister was pregnant. I was in shock thinking how could she do that to him? What a kind sweet guy and she didn’t even have the decency to tell him! Well, now I can understand why – only a girl who is scared would have acted this way, surely?
It was after this that I noticed a change in his behaviour. I don’t know whether this was because he knew I was not planning on staying. He went from being kind, quiet and gentle to moody, angry, verbally aggressive and making me feel like I was walking on eggshells. I paid him a compliment one night about how lovely I thought he was, and he practically bit my head off. He told me to stop saying this about him, it wasn’t true, he was a “horrible bastard”. I asked him why he felt like this. He then started the sob story, which I now know was purely for my attention and sympathy. He told me about his ex girlfriend and how he used to yell at her aggressively for no reason, call her names and tell her he didn’t love her, which wasn’t true. I asked him why he had done this and he said it was because she got “cocky” with him and it used to make him angry. He would also throw her possessions on the floor during arguments. I know that this girl left him to be with another girl, and his story always was that she left him because she was a lesbian. I now know she left him because of his verbal abuse.
One evening he rang me and told me he was playing his Play Station with some friends and would be busy all night so would speak to me tomorrow. During the phone call he sounded upset over something which played on my mind all night. Just before 11pm I decided to call him to see on the off chance he was free to talk. I only planned on calling him once as I knew he still may be busy. However, he answered. The first thing I said to him was that if he was still busy it wasn’t a problem, I will call him tomorrow. It turns out he was still playing his game. However, instead of letting me go, he kept me on the phone and proceeded to belittle me in front of all of his friends, asking why I had called him when I knew he was playing his game. Whenever I was with my friends, he never bothered me, so why was I doing it to him. I asked why he had answered then if he was busy and he said it would have made him a “c**t” if he had ignored my call. I didn’t even get angry with him at this time, I just said bye and hung up.
He also began denying me sex, which is something I have never ever experienced before with any other man. Whenever I tried initiating it he would accuse me of being a sex pest. He said he never wanted it in the evenings, which is when I was usually there. He wanted it in the mornings only and if I didn’t want it then, I wouldn’t get any.
There were also a few comments made about my driving. Bearing in mind at the age of 32 he still doesn’t have a license so relied on me to drive him places. One day we were out and he was criticising me for everything, despite me never having an accident or a speeding ticket in the 8 years I have held my license. I was taking corners too fast, etc, wrong gear, blah, blah. In the end I laughed at him for only being able to travel by bus and he must be embarrassed his woman has to drive him everywhere. This quickly shut him up but I could feel the anger radiating off him. Another time, after I asked him for directions to McDonald’s from his house, he asked me if I have learning difficulties because I should really have known the way without having to ask. I do not live in the same area as him and he had taken me down a back alleyway that I wasn’t familiar with, so how he thought I would know the way without asking is beyond me. He then wouldn’t let the subject drop the entire journey, asking me what type of learner I am and am I dyslexic (I’m not, and I am actually educated to degree level!) I understand now that he must have felt pretty inadequate being in the passenger seat, not only in life, but also in my car. That was the last time we ever went out in my car together.
He was always constantly angry with someone or something. Because he thought his work colleagues were geeks and they were arrogant and annoyed him, he said to me on several occasions that he wanted to “bite their noses off” in a really aggressive tone. He had also apparently started a fight with a colleague on a work night out the year before because they moved to a different bar without telling him.
He then told me one evening that a couple of days beforehand his younger brother had woke him up at 7am on a Saturday morning after accidently locking himself out the house after a night shift. Because he brother didn’t apologise when he let him in he attacked him and got him in a headlock in the hallway of their house. He said to me the only reason he stopped was because he didn’t want to damage anything in his house. He then told me once again that he was a “horrible bastard” and tried to gain my sympathy for his bad behaviour.
Sadly, his aggressive behaviour like this wasn’t such a shock to me. Just before we started dating he told me that in January 2014, around six months after we became friends again, he had got himself in to a fight near to where he lives. He was coming home one night from the gym and saw two guys appearing to bully another younger guy. He didn’t know any of them and had never seen them before. Without thinking what he was doing, he jumped in and attacked these two guys. He always maintained that he was “saving” the younger one and I never doubted that this was his motive. However, this guy ran off unscathed, although he continued to beat this other guy pretty badly. I will also mention that he is heavily in to body building, so he is by no means physically weak. The other guy, clearly trying to save his mate, stabbed him in the leg with a hypodermic needle. Obviously he had decided to pick a fight with two heroine users. Both men then ran off. He has since said to me that if this other guy hadn’t have stabbed him, he would have just carried on. I still have no idea where this anger came from when he clearly didn’t even know what was going on between any of them.
This resulted in him having to be tested for all kinds of diseases including HIV and he had to undertake several months of anti HIV medication. He was only given the all clear for everything about 8 weeks before we got together.
In September he went away for a week with his friend on a business trip to Brazil. Whilst he was there he spent the majority of his time texting me telling me how much he was missing me and couldn’t wait to see me when he got home. It was things like this that kept my hope alive that he was still the right guy for me. I missed him too, despite everything, and it was this continued display of his nice side that kept me with him this long.
When he came home it became clear he had picked up some kind of cold like virus. I wouldn’t even say flu virus, as he wasn’t bed ridden or even really that unwell. However, this is when the extreme behaviour began. For days he was all “woe is me” and took several days off work. He refused to do any housework, including washing the plates because he was so unwell. Therefore, when I came round and saw this, I insisted on doing it for him.
He started complaining he had a temperature, which he did. I brought a thermometer from home and checked this for him. However, he insisted we went out and bought another one for a second opinion. So I took him to our nearest supermarket, in my car, and we bought another one. He sat there all night continuously taking his temperature which was about 39 degrees. I repeatedly kept telling him that he most likely had picked something up on the plane, which is common, and as he wasn’t at death’s door, he was probably okay. But this is when he started mentioning HIV again. He kept saying that the doctors may have got his all clear wrong, what if this was the first signs of it and they missed it. He then began saying to me that if he had it, I would have it too. He would not let this issue drop all night.
I kept reassuring him that they won’t have missed it but he wouldn’t listen. I then said to him that the best thing we can do is visit a GUM clinic at the hospital and get ourselves tested and that way it will put our minds at rest. However, he refused point blank to go. I couldn’t really understand this at all, although the reason for this became clear to me many months later. I told him that I was going to go anyway without him, but he seemed to get angry with me over this. So I decided the following Monday to go and speak to a doctor at a family planning clinic, but I also decided not to tell him I was going. I thought that he is clearly paranoid and scared, I was genuinely worried for him and his state of mind. I couldn’t even begin to image what he had gone through before being told he was clear.
I went and waited two hours to be seen. I spoke to this doctor at length and she reassured me that I had taken the adult approach by seeking help, and that he had seemingly taken a very childish one. She advised me that HIV screening is almost always 100% accurate so it was virtually impossible they had missed it, but advised we get tested for reassurance anyway. He kept calling me that evening, and I knew that he knew where I had gone and I could sense his anger. When I eventually got home he called me again and I told him where I had been. He completely lost it and this was the first time I had ever witnessed his temper. He kept telling me that I was “stressing him out” and that I was supposed to be the “voice of reason.” Again, it took me months to figure out what he meant by this.
I was so upset that I refused to speak to him for three days. When we eventually did speak he played the innocent nice guy card on me and told me he had no idea he had even shouted at me. I made the decision to go and get tested for HIV but again he wouldn’t know until I had the results and the all clear back.
Another thing he very often did was call me in the evenings after work for around three hours. At the beginning these phone calls were the highlight of my day. But what first started out as friendly banter between us turned in to every single phone call being a rant about why he hated his life, job, situation, colleagues etc, etc. Every evening soon turned in to a ritual rant. I have also not mentioned the fact he has a drinking problem, something I witnessed in person numerous times. He would very often knock back three or four pints a night and I often found empty vodka bottles in his kitchen.
One evening not long after the HIV situation, he called me and was completely drunk. I asked where he was, thinking he must have been at the pub with some friends, but he was home alone, having necked the majority of a bottle of vodka. This phone call basically ended our relationship. He started out by telling me that some of his work colleagues were being made redundant and he was really angry about it. This is understandable, however, I still didn’t see how it warranted getting completely hammered, especially as his job was safe. He then started going on about how he was being moved to another office in Manchester with people he didn’t like.
A few days before this I had also noticed he had been liking a girl’s facebook photos, somebody he had previously told me he didn’t know and had added as a friend by mistake. However, he must have done this again whilst we were on the phone because I was on facebook trying to distract myself from the conversation at the time when it showed up. So I asked him why he was doing it. He then told me that he was doing it to give her an ego boost and would love to “slip her one” but because of me he can’t. He then started hysterically laughing at me when I mentioned my ex, and how I had found out about his cheating via facebook and that what he had just said was pretty disrespectful considering. He laughed really loud and said to me “you’re jealous! That’s fucking ace!” I knew right there and then we were so over. How could he even make a joke about this after how I confided in him about what my ex did. I was beyond hurt.
The same night we arranged that I would stay at his house the following day. I decided to do the right thing and do it in person, but I didn’t tell him this is what I was going to do. However the following evening as I was ready to leave, he text me saying he had gone out with his friend and had forgotten we had made plans because he was so drunk the night before. I was livid with him and he knew it. He then had the nerve to get angry with me because I was so upset. The following day I decided that he didn’t even deserve having me dump in person and I did it by text. I was devastated and it’s a feeling that has lingered with me ever since. However, at the back of my mind I knew that if he would just listen to me and stop this behaviour, we could go back to how we were at the beginning, happy, and with a lovely future ahead of us. This is something I ended up holding on to for months, as a fully believed the “real” him wasn’t this horrible idiot I had been dating in place of this lovely friend I used to have.
At first his response shocked me. He was really nice about it and said that he really liked me and wanted us to make a go of being friends in the hope that we may reconcile. However, I wasn’t in the mood to be friends after what he had done so I proceeded to list each and every last thing he had done wrong to me. The list was huge. After I did this, his behaviour changed. He then tried turning it around on me saying that the only way we would reconcile was if I stopped pulling him for his behaviour. His ex (the one who left him for a girl) never got angry with him for his behaviour. “I say and do stupid things but she just let it go, why can’t you do that”. I now know that she most likely did this out of fear of what he might do in return.
This resulted in a huge argument where I told him exactly what I thought of him and if he carried on he would be alone forever. This must have hit a nerve because at first he agreed and said that he knew he would be. I then began to feel a massive amount of guilt for what I’d said and for the fact I had finished with him so abruptly. This guy clearly had a problem and had turned to me for help and I had just abandoned him. I tried in vain to get him to speak to me but he wouldn’t. Then he told me he would “think” about it. However, I didn’t hear anything from him again in weeks so I tried again. By now it was around 7 weeks since we split. He then smugly told me that he would be friends, but there was no point in us talking as he had recently started seeing someone.
He then told me how he had fallen “head over heels” for her, like he had done with his ex, and that he hadn’t been feeling “it” with me, she didn’t criticise him or try and change him like I did. Basically, rubbed her right in my face like he thought he had somehow got one over on me. I was so angry that he had done this and I was also hurt he had gone on the rebound like this so I told him that it was fine, my feelings for him had disappeared anyway because of his behaviour – not exactly a lie. I still could not get my head round why he had done all this stuff to me in the first place, my head was a mess. All I could focus on was the amazing guy I had known previously and the huge amount of guilt I was feeling for abandoning him like this. I tried again around Christmas to get him to speak to me. I so desperately wanted him to listen to me before he got himself in to any further trouble, but he just wouldn’t. He told me this new girl, although being around for only a month, had a problem with me talking to him and she thought I was trying to get back together with him. I wasn’t nor had I even mentioned this.
I then ceased contact with him for a couple of months and it was during this time that somebody from my work place approached me wanting to talk to me about Nick. At the time I didn’t know this person but it turned out he had worked with Nick for five years at his previous job along with his ex girlfriend (all had worked together). He told me how he had witnessed this lovely young girl turn in to a quiet, reclusive unhappy person over the four or so years they were together and how he was abusive towards her. I was really shocked that someone who didn’t even know me felt concerned enough to approach me about such a sensitive issue like this. He said he didn’t know if the abuse had ever been physical (it hadn’t) but he felt like he needed to tell me before I ended up in the same boat. We had already split at this point but I was so grateful to this person for doing this for me.
However, whilst this made me cautious of him, I also felt tremendous sadness that somebody actually felt the need to say something like this to me about my wonderful friend (I was still very much clouded at this point). I decided that I would tell him but I didn’t pluck up the courage to do so until three months later at the end of February. By now I no longer had his number and I did not want to see him face to face. Bearing in mind I was still so hurt for the way I had been treated and also the fact of this new girl, my head was still doing somersaults on a daily basis and I was sickened to think he had someone else so soon after me. So I decided to contact him via email. In hindsight, I wish I had never done this.
In the meantime I contacted his ex girlfriend myself and asked her outright. She was really sweet and understanding and actually sympathised with me. She told me he used to get up in her face to yell, block her way out of a room during an argument but he hadn’t ever hit her. She also said to me she was happy he was out of her life. I’m glad I asked her directly, and it put my mind at ease knowing it wasn’t about me, and that it seemed to be every girl he had dated.
Funnily enough, we spoke about it and he assured me he had never been physical, and I said I believed him. Things seemed to be okay between us and the conversation was calm. The guilt came back yet again and I couldn’t believe I had abandoned him. I didn’t want to be back in a relationship but the fact that people were now saying all this stuff behind his back about him upset me so much. For some reason I failed to even consider the fact that people said and thought this because of his behaviour and that he brought the entire thing on himself!!
I told him how much I missed our friendship and how I really wanted us to be friends again so he would listen to me and stop this behaviour before he got himself in to more trouble. He didn’t reply to this email, which is something he always did to hurt me as he knows that being ignored is something I hate. Then the weirdness started. I received a series of emails from an unknown address with an unusual fake name. This person made reference to something I had said in an email to Nick…I said to him if he ever needed my help to let me know as I would always be there for him but if he did decide to be friends I would appreciate him not trying to hurt me by rubbing the new girl in my face again. This person stated they were my ex boyfriend but they didn’t want their girlfriend to know they were emailing me, and they needed my help.
Then things escalated in to some very personal insults, calling me fat (I weigh about 137 pounds!), making digs about my job, reference to my living situation, all stuff that only he would have known. Also, nobody knew my email address as I never used it to communicate with anyone apart from him and some overseas family members. I asked him why he has done it and he completely denied it, even got a dig in himself that I have some weird people in my life and I’ve clearly pissed someone off. He even accused me of sending them to myself as an excuse to make contact with him! I was baffled. Then, I received a Facebook message from his apparent new girlfriend telling me she thinks it looks like I am trying to get back together with him. I put two and two together and realised it was her – he told me she had been reading my emails. After I blocked her she then began bombarding me with email messages, which I never read. I knew he had put her up to this deliberately to make me jealous. He knew as well as I did that I had never once said I wanted him back and I think he made this up to make her jealous of me. So I lost my temper and told her that I wasn’t interested in that, I wanted my friend back and I was scared he would get himself killed one day because of his abusive behaviour. I then told her about the conversation I had with my ex, and if she had any sense she would leave before he did the same to her as he had done to us.
That evening I received a text message, what I now know was sent by his brother. This text claimed to be from my grim reaper, threatened me if I didn’t leave Nick alone (really?) that my internet would be hacked amongst other threats. The following morning the emails started again. This time they told me my facebook photos had been stolen and my home address put on to a porno dating website. They made threats against my car and told me my “karma” was coming for me. I haven’t never had 100% proof that this was his girlfriend, but like I said, only they knew my email address. I questioned him about it once again and he admitted he knew who had sent the text and he wasn’t happy about it. However, this was three weeks later and at no point had he contacted me to tell me I didn’t need to worry about this sinister and threatening message, so he really wasn’t all that concerned by its content. I reported the incident to the police and they advised me that no matter how scared I was for him I needed to stay away because he clearly had no remorse for any of actions. How right they were. I was utterly petrified, I couldn’t sleep, eat or function. My head was spinning even faster than before, I could not believe I had reported my amazing friend to the police. It was the police who pointed out to me that what I was experiencing what in fact domestic abuse. I already knew this, but hearing a professional say it just hit home.
For a couple of weeks I waited for them to make a decision, they said they were going to go round and speak to him about his behaviour and warn him if he did anything else it would result in an arrest. I was so uncomfortable with this, the idea of him being carted off to a cell upset me. Despite what he had done, it upset me. I am disgusted with myself for even shedding a tear for him at this point but I really felt even more guilt than before.
Then, for some reason, I decided to text the phone number I received the message from. I don’t know why I chose to do it but I did, and it was then his brother told me it was him. At first he was aggressive with me and said that I had no right going round telling people his brother hit women – which I had never said. I explained to his brother that he was wrong, I had told him that somebody approached me suggesting it but I actually defended his brother. I said that I had called him verbally abusive but that was it. We ended up speaking on the phone for a few hours and I explained the entire situation, how I was scared for him and wanted to make him realise what his behaviour was doing and if it didn’t stop, the next time he gets in a fight he might not be so lucky. His brother also told me that this girlfriend was super paranoid that I was trying to get back with him, although I made it clear to him numerous times I wasn’t. He told me that he had been given a completely different story by Nick and he had told him I was fixated on trying to get back together with him. Fascinating really when I think about it.
His brother told me that he was really sorry and could now see the lengths I’d gone to in order to help his brother. He knew nothing of the emails and even offered to help me find out who they were from, although we never did. I know he passed this information on to him and told him how wrong he had been to accuse me of trying to blacken his name, when in fact all I had done was try and help him out of fear. To this day, he hasn’t said a single word to me. Not a sorry, nothing.
I’ve since dropped the case with the police as I feel it’s pointless. I did however send him a message and told him I knew it was his girlfriend sending me those emails. Two days later, the email address was deleted from gmail with no further contact. Coincidence? I don’t think he even knew she was doing it, but I have never met this girl. She showed such hatred towards me, which makes me wonder what the hell he told her about me. His brother also told me that she refused to have the curtains open in his house because she was convinced I was hanging around outside, fixated on him. This information can only have come from him.
I have had a traumatic eight months and I have never been so hurt, confused or mistreated by anyone. However, I can now see it for what it is. He wanted a woman he could control like his ex, but this just wasn’t me. He knew it, I knew it, so he made out he didn’t want me. He told me later on that he tried to get with that other girl via Facebook to punish me for “nagging” him about his bad behaviour. I wouldn’t even describe it as nagging.
For months I lay awake at night worried about him, the HIV situation, the pain he must have been in emotionally. Then it dawned on me. He knew full well he didn’t have it. This is precisely why he went nuts when I went to get tested for it. If I had the results in black and white, he could no longer use it to get my sympathy and attention. Sickening really.
At no point did he contact me after this text was sent to tell me not to worry about it and ignore it. He let me suffer for weeks worrying about what was going to happen to me, all the while playing the part of the victim.
I gave him a window of opportunity to apologise to me, however, his brother relayed this message to him over two months ago and I’ve not heard a word. I doubt I ever will now. I have now cut this man from my life and blocked him from being able to contact me and I am now slowly starting to heal. In hindsight I cannot believe how he managed to hook me in like that, make me feel guilt for things I hadn’t actually done, made me feel sorry for him and genuinely worried and concerned when he practically told me that he could have infected me with a life threatening virus purely to gain attention. I think he has an evil and twisted side to him and I doubt that this new girlfriend has got this far without witnessing this for herself. He clearly made me the topic of conversation for the majority of their time together, it sounds like I was all he ever talked about. Why she needed to know my dress size, my car and my job description I will never know, but she has used this information against me. He must have made me out to be pure evil because all she went on about was my “karma” coming for me. Now I am off the scene, I am wondering if his attention and abuse will now focus solely on her. I bet it won’t be long before she feels pretty stupid for what she did to me.
So that is basically my story. I have experienced so many emotions in the last twelve months, I am exhausted.
My goal is to educate, empower, and inspire other abuse victims in understanding more about what happened to them (and how to prevent it from happening again), as well as how to go on and rebuild an amazing life.
Even though I have had a lot of "in the trenches" experience with highly manipulative people of all kinds, I consider myself to be a student of Narcissism, mindset, motivation, healing, and life in general, and am by no means an expert on any of these topics.
It's for these reasons, that when you are reading my information that I encourage you to hold to what helps, and let the rest go.
Latest posts by Dana (see all)
- Episode 28: Gratitude Can Help Keep You Grounded - March 21, 2017
- Episode 27: Learning How to Tune Into Your Emotions - March 19, 2017
- Episode 26: Live Stream from March 8, 2017 - March 14, 2017