Home > Abusive relationships, Borderline Personality Disorder, Narcissistic Personality Disorder, relationships > The Abusive Woman: You Can’t Reason with a Crazy Person

The Abusive Woman: You Can’t Reason with a Crazy Person


banging my head against a wallWhy does she act this way? Why does she treat me like this? Why did she say that? Why can’t she be nice? Why? Why? Why?

The short answer is: Because she’s crazy. You’ll make yourself crazy if you try to find meaning in her meaningless and casually cruel behaviors. Most of us try to understand the world in which we live to varying degrees. It’s human nature to search for meaning, particularly when there’s no ready explanation for certain phenomena.

We go to therapy, we pray, we meditate and we conduct scientific research to try to understand why. I believe a life without meaning isn’t worth living but, sometimes, in certain situations and with certain people, there is no greater meaning to be found other than they just. . . suck.

When your wife or girlfriend treats you badly, you want to understand why. You ask yourself:

  • Is she having a bad day?
  • Did you do something wrong?
  • What can you do differently?
  • Maybe she doesn’t realize the way she’s treating you is hurtful and if you tell her she’ll stop?

These are good questions to ask if you’re involved with an emotionally healthy and grounded woman. However, if you’re involved with an emotionally abusive bully/professional victim, a Narcissist a Borderline or another abuse prone personality type, asking the above questions will get you nowhere. In fact, if you try to discuss these matters with her, she’ll probably blame you and become more abusive, which will make you feel more confused and a little nuts.

The bottom line is YOU CAN’T REASON WITH A CRAZY PERSON. Emotionally abusive women want to control you and they do it by making you feel bad. That’s all the “meaning” there is to be found.

Psychology has created diagnostic labels to identify and make sense of the full spectrum of crazy behaviors of emotionally abusive people. Some explanations for their behavior include biological bases, early childhood trauma/abuse or that their behavior is learned.

At best, these explanations are inadequate. At their worst, these explanations give bullies and emotional predators a free pass to treat others like crap, usually without any consequences. She had a tough childhood, so you have to be patient with her. She was abused by a family member, so you have to forgive, tolerate and learn how NOT to trigger her crazy and hurtful side. Give me a break.

I have a tremendous amount of sympathy for children who are actively being abused. However, I’ve zero sympathy for adults with abuse histories who have grown up to abuse other adults, their children and won’t take responsibility for their behaviors because “they have problems.” That “why” just doesn’t fly.

There are lots of men who had troubled childhoods and don’t believe the rules of society apply to them. Many of them end up in jail. Women with similarly bad childhoods and equally bad adult behaviors are generally protected, enabled, and occasionally rewarded by Psychology and the legal system. It’s a double standard.

For example, your wife goes off on a tear, screaming obscenities at you and your children. Instead of saying, “that’s not ok,” you and your kids feel bad about upsetting her and try to figure out how to make her happy—often with the help of a therapist. * This is a separate topic, but if there are child(ren) involved, what are you teaching them about adult relationships? That it’s ok to abuse others to get your rocks off, because you’re upset or to get what you want?

Instead of protecting yourself from the crazy person, the emotional predator, and the bully; you protect her and serve yourself up on a platter. You can try to understand this. You can try to make meaning out of it, but what does it solve? She’s still crazy and hurtful. Do the reasons “why” really matter?

Instead, ask yourself WHY you’re compelled to understand this woman and her crazy behavior. Why are you compelled to stay in this relationship? What does it mean about you if you can’t get this woman to be kind to you? Understand your own reasons for being in this relationship and then decide if this is how you want to spend the rest of your life.

Shrink4Men Coaching and Consulting Services:

Dr Tara J. Palmatier provides confidential, fee-for-service, consultation/coaching services to help both men and women work through their relationship issues via telephone and/or Skype chat. Her practice combines practical advice, support, reality testing and goal-oriented outcomes. Please visit the Shrink4Men Services page for professional inquiries.

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Banging my head against a wall by brownhorse on flickr.

  1. Mark
    August 30, 2009 at 11:38 pm

    Wow!! I don’t know wether to be relieved I’m not the only one, or be scared to death.
    I’ve been married for 3 years. The insanity began 1 1/2 years into our marriage. It wasn’t perfect before, I said many things I shouldn’t have, but I would say we each were 1/2 to blame.
    1 1/2 years ago, it began. It coincides with when she had birth control implanted into her arm. It isn’t supposed to come out for 3 years, and she has refused the advice of 2 different counselors to take it out. For a long time, I thought this was the difference in her emotional change. I only knew her for 2 weeks(her sister introduced us) before she informed me she knew that we would get married. 5 weeks later…we were married. Sounds stupid, but my parents didn’t even freak too much, because I’m one that typically makes sound, rash decisions. They figured I had prayed about it and knew, “this was the one.” Oh well, I still don’t know.
    I also blamed myself over the last 1 1/2 years, because of the way I had treated her before. I hold myself to a high standard, and just because I felt mistreated in the early parts, didn’t excuse the things I said to her. At some point however, with the prodding of counseling, I have to stop using that excuse for her. My physical and mental heatlh has deteoriated greatly. I have had my business for over 6 years and never had a month of negative cash flow. Our first sepeartion was 8 months ago, and I now have had 7 straight months of negative cash flow. I’m very close to losing it.
    The worst part is that we have a 2 yr old son. He is awesome!!! Sadly, I don’t know how to protect our family. I don’t want to give up. I’ve tried everything. In the last year we’ve put about $25K and over 100 hours into counseling. I stumbled across the term BPD when I did an internet search 4 days ago for, “abused men.” Since then, I think this might fit. I’ve had counselors mention BP and Manic depressive, but they never seemed to quite fit. This does, I think.
    We were separated for 6 weeks earlier this year. She stayed in our house(that I bought 7 yrs ago when I was 23, personal pride in that accomplishment) with our son. During this period, one time she would be cool about coming over to my parents(where I stayed) to hang out so I could see him, the next day she would refuse and say I have to go over there(and sometimes not even be there). All this sucked. I chose to move out because she called the police one night. Amazingly, they didn’t arrest either one of us and didn’t even ask me to leave. It is standard here, that on a Domestic Violence call, they take SOMEBODY to jail(usually the man). I swore I wouldn’t move back in unless there was 24/7 video in the house. Oh well, so much for that.
    Now we seperated again 10 days ago. This came about one morning when she began yelling and cursing out me and said she was moving out that day. I asked if she was serious and she said I would find out when I got home from work. Ironicly, the night before was the opposite. I suggested we go to the park together. We each wrote out 5 “needs” we felt the other could give. By the time we left that night, it was like we were newlyweds. It was awesome and I thought we were on another mode of “burn the ships and let’s move forward and be happy.” It only took 30 minutes of being awake for that to disapear.
    2 days later we spent the weekend(during the day) hanging out, cuddling, and spending time with our son. 2 days after that we had an appointment with the counselor to discuss how we would handle the seperation. My wife didn’t show up until 10 minutes were left. Then she followed after I left for about 20-25 minutes, completly freaking me out. Finally, she pulled up next to me, stuck her tongue out, and then took off.
    Since then, she won’t return my calls and I haven’t seen my son. This sucks!! I am a dang good father and I know he misses me. I’ve read these posts and seem similar stories, so to all of you, I UNDERSTAND.
    I’m trying to gather the strength to do what I must. I just don’t want to give up on our family yet. If she truly has/is(whatever) BPD, then I would like to see her get the help she needs. Sometimes she is anti-therapy, other times she is open to it. Anyways, thanks for the vent and I hope some of you others gain solice out of my story.
    I will check back to see how everyone is. Assuming she doesn’t manage to have me thrown in jail for “beating the crap out of her,” although it is the other way around. You know, that never hurt near as much as the emotional roller coaster and my intense urge to relieve the obvious bitterness/pain she must feel to act this way. I’m one of those that tries to “fix” everyone and everything. Ok, ramblilng. Take care!!

  2. Anthony
    August 12, 2009 at 2:04 am

    Hi Dr T.

    Just keeping you posted on my life and wanting to say hi to all as well.

    As you all know or may not know my ex seems to really be “hopeless”. Several months ago when she quit therapy, God only knows why…I told her that there is no way I could continue with her. She promised to go back when I held my ground, but then told me she rather “chew on glass” then go to therapy. Several weeks past she shows up at my house after I found out she was out on dates, saying that there is nothing wrong with me. I am not sick and I do not have any disorder or problems! (This is after she admitted to me several months back that she did in fact have BPD/NPD) She said I want to be with you, but you ask too much of me and push me away. I’m really lost for words.

    Sometimes I think she is just trying to protect her reputation because I have told friends/family/Priest about her diagnosis. That I kinda feel bad about. I really did not do it out of malice, I just needed support. (I also feel that this sealed my fate with her). She also text me a couple days ago saying that she is completely done with me and putting me in her past for good!!! I guess because I’m holding my ground and won’t take her back. Who knows…

    Anyway, she has been in and out of therapy for years (3-1/2) and maybe she is just too tired dealing with all of this. Let’s face it, all of us here would not want to be diagnosed with BPD/NPD, right? I do feel for her too. I think she just gave up. It is very sad, because as you all know we have cared about our ex’s and they do have some remarkable traits too.

    In their defense, I think there doing the best they can with what they have. It’s got to be tough for them, right? I really don’t think it is their nature, but the disease instead. Maybe I’m off the mark.

    Dr T, When someone is in denial about their problems, what can someone do? And why is it so hard for them to admit these types of disorders? Also, when is enough therapy for these types of people? Is there ever and end?

    My school is going well, but I’m broke and having a hard time staying focused. One day at a time is my motto for now.

    Hope this might be helpful for some other people and your blogs, Dr T.

    Would love to hear back from you and I hope you’re doing well.

    Anthony

    • shrink4men
      August 19, 2009 at 6:01 pm

      Hi Anthony,

      It’s good to hear from you. I’m happy you started school. Just keep moving forward.

      To answer your question, when someone is in denial about their problems you can’t do anything to help them. And, when they’re in denial and being abusive, you need to stay as far away from them as possible. It’s okay to feel sorry for her, Anthony, but I encourage you to do so from a safe distance.

      Kind Regards,
      Dr Tara

  3. Kayla
    July 7, 2009 at 4:12 am

    Dr. Tara,

    One of your readers here, admitted to hitting his girlfriend and that he was remorseful and apologetic about it. He stated that she uses it against him.

    You replied that is was a control tactic on her part. That is MINIMIZATION at it’s finest and am amused to be scrolling up and down here and find that somehow this post was deleted. So perhaps YOU should get your facts straight. Not anywhere did you state that you condone physical violence from either sex. And I never said you did.

    I am aware that men can be abused by women. And I feel for them. Not quite sure how I’m labeling you as a sexist woman hater. I just disagree with some of your views.

    If you knew anything about domestic violence then you would know that men use the “crazy bitch” excuse all the time. Somehow people buy this and term it as her “provoking” and wanting the abuse.

    Both genders can be diagnosed with NPD or BPD. And I’m sure you already know the statistics. Men usually fall high in this category.

    I’m not surprised that women would leave violent comments on your site. Reading some of this would put any woman on the defensive and subject you to some hostility. Not all would respond as politely as I have.

    Men need support and I’m all for it. But, I wouldn’t be providing links to blogs termed “how to tell if she’s a crazy bitch”. That’s just asking for sympathy to men that abuse woman. A normal man that respects woman would never use such a term even if the woman he was dealing with really was crazy. And as an educated woman such as yourself I would think you might even find profanity like that about the female sex offensive.

    • shrink4men
      July 7, 2009 at 2:51 pm

      Kayla,

      I have repeatedly stated on this site that violence is unacceptable from either partner in a relationship. Sometimes both partners in a relationship engage in abusive behaviors. For example, the woman needles and needles and needles the man until he explodes and violence occurs. Sometimes the woman even strikes the man first and he hits back. No matter how it plays out, let me state once again, physical and psychological violence are unacceptable, even if a person has been provoked.

      I believe you are indignant about a comment “Andrew” left on 03/29/2009 in which he admits that the only time he felt in control with his abusive ex is when he would hit her.

      Here is an excerpt from my reply left on 03/30/2009:

      Understand what attracts you to this kind of woman. Face it. Work through it. And then let it go. Life is too short to be the half-dead mouse to their cat paw. These women project their chaos onto you and can push you into violence. For that reason alone, you have to break all contact. There is no excuse for physical violence—no matter how cruel or twisted they treat you.

      Here are other instances in which I explicitly state that violence against an intimate partner is not acceptable:

      pocph writes on 04/08/2009 (comment thread for Can a Relationship with a Narcissistic or Borderline Wife or Girlfriend Change your Personality?):

      Dictator women have always ruined relationships and made calm men murderous.

      my reply on 04/08/2009:

      Sounds a little extreme, but I think I see your point. It’s natural to have extremely negative reactions and feelings to NPD/BPD women, but murder isn’t ok. It’s much better to just end the relationship. In other words, there are times when one of these women may make you feel homicidal, but it’s definitely not alright to act on those feelings.

      my reply to barbaric on 04/15/2009 (comment thread for Lindsay Lohan’s eHarmony Profile: If Only All Crazy Women Were This Honest):

      I disagree with your “eat or be eaten” philosophy. It’s like saying “abuse or be abused.” I try to live by, “Treat others the way you want to be treated and don’t tolerate abuse from anyone.”

      my reply to C on 05/27/2009 (comment thread for 12 Signs You Should Break Up With Your Girlfriend or Boyfriend or Spouse):

      It depends upon the individual in question. If a man or a woman (women engage in abusive behaviors just as much as men do) is perpetrating physical and emotional violence in a relationship and can’t acknowledge or recognize that his or her behavior is wrong and that he or she needs help, then, no, I don’t believe there is any hope for the relationship.

      Furthermore, admitting there’s a problem and agreeing to get help needs to be backed up with action. In other words, if he or she doesn’t seek therapy and actively work at changing his or her abusive behaviors, then crying and making promises that “it will never happen again” or that “things will get better” are meaningless and not to be believed.

      my reply to C on 05/28/2009 (comment thread for 12 Signs You Should Break Up With Your Girlfriend or Boyfriend or Spouse)

      Physical abuse is wrong, no matter what. If you’re in a relationship that’s become physically abusive, you must get out, whether you’re a woman who’s being physically abused by a man or a man who’s being abused by a woman.

      In extreme cases, emotional and psychological abuse escalates into physical abuse. I encourage you to find resources in your community and online resources for women to help you make sense of and heal from this relationship.

      I don’t know you or your boyfriend. I don’t know what goes on in your relationship beyond what you’ve described in your two comments. Nevertheless, there is no excuse for physical abuse from either party in a relationship. Emotional abuse can lead a person to behave in ways that go against his or her character, but acting out in physical violence is extreme and indefensible. It may suggest that there are pre-existing problems with your boyfriend as physical violence is an extreme response. Again, I don’t know you or your boyfriend, so this is not a diagnosis. I am speaking in general terms.

      If you behave in an emotionally abusive way toward your boyfriend, it may well trigger him to become physically abusive or something else may be going on, like his alcohol abuse or a childhood abuse history. These factors do NOT excuse physical or emotional violence, however.

      In instances of physical violence, it doesn’t matter who did what to whom first. Everyone is responsible for his or her own behavior. If you treat him in an emotionally abusive way, you need to take responsibility and get help for that. If he is physically abusive toward you, he needs to take responsibility and get help for that.

      When physical abuse occurs in a relationship, my advice is to separate yourselves, stop blaming one another, no matter how blameworthy you both feel each of you are, and get help. What you’ve described is an extremely unhealthy and dangerous relationship dynamic for both of you. You both need to stop blaming each other and get yourselves help.

      This isn’t going to be resolved by reading a few blog posts. My blog and other blogs and forums available on the web are there to help men and women to educate themselves about abuse and to empower themselves to get help and/or end the cycle of abusive relationships that they’re in. They aren’t intended to be used to justify more abusive behavior.

      Again, I urge you and your boyfriend to separately seek help offline with your own therapists.

      I hope this dispels your accusation that I “minimize” physical violence. For the record, during my MS program, I interned for 6 months and then was hired for a full-time position at a women’s domestic violence shelter, so understand full well the effects of physical and psychological violence. From working there, I learned that in many relationships, the woman will provoke the man into physical violence for a number of reasons, such as:

      1. Being able to predict the next violent episode as a way to “get it over with.”
      2. As a form of projective identification. Meaning that the woman has a script in her head in which men are supposed to be abusive, violent jerks, so she acts in ways to elicit that type of behavior.
      3. As a form of manipulation. Meaning that she knows afterward he will feel guilty, a honeymoon period will ensue and she will be able to get something she wants from him because he wants to assuage his guilt.
      4. To be able to have something to hold over his head and use his guilt to control him.

      These are incredibly sick behaviors, but they are acts of control—disturbing as that it is. In no way does this excuse physical violence or exonerate the perpetrator, but all relationships are a dance between two people. If there’s an abuse dynamic, both partners play a role. The primary abuser is responsible for his or her behavior and if the target chooses to remain in the relationship and engages in secondary abusive behaviors (e.g., retaliation, manipulation) she or he is responsible, too.

      As for diagnostic statistics, I believe that women with NPD are under-reported and/or misdiagnosed with BPD. Both BPD and NPD persons are very abusive toward their “loved ones” whether they’re male or female.

      Actually, the comments in which women were verbally aggressive were left on the post, Men Have Emotions, But Women Don’t Listen. They were inflamed that I suggest that men have just as many feeling as women, but are often beat up for having them or not expressing them how most women do. Go figure.

      Thanks for reading and commenting.
      Dr Tara

  4. Treyce
    June 12, 2009 at 5:35 pm

    Anthony, I can understand where you are, I myself am now dealing with the aftermath of being involved with one of these soul sucking beasts. You are looking for any reason you can to justify yourself and the amount of energy you have put into this beast. You keep saying to yourself, “if I just keep giving then at some point surely she’ll return the favor, or energy” The problem is they do not, and never will. You are nothing more than a battery to her, an amusing puppet that she keeps on a string to yank whenever she wants.

    I am in my thirties and have never been married and have no children. I got involved with my beast about 16 months ago. The first 3-4 months were like “heaven” if you will, then the mask started to crumble. She has a daughter, which I became quite attached too. As it seems with most of the posts I’ve read, these beasts are extremely attractive, and use their, shall we say, sexual knowledge as a hook. I have also been told that they will use their children as “bait” They create situations for you that leave you with a “damned if you do, and damned if you don’t” outcome.

    She was always angry with the world. Whenever something was bothering her, she would take it all out on me. It doesn’t matter which decision you make its the wrong one, and they will definitely let you know about it. If I ever wanted to express any feelings I was having in the relationship I was met with belittling and within 2 minutes an escalation into her yelling at me because of how I felt. There was one time where she physically attacked me, (RED FLAG!), and as all of us have done, instead of bolting toward the nearest exit, we make excuses for them, cause they have fed us the same mess.

    My beast had an alcoholic father with alot of fighting in the house, and he actually passed away from brain cancer. I know this was very traumatic on her, but as I have read, it doesn’t excuse her from her abusive actions toward people. This became a recurring event. The pattern would start again about every 2 months. And again, I made excuses for her, and also truly believed that I would surely at some point get my energy returned to me. (DUMB ME). They will manipulate you into doing anything they want because of all the bad things that have happened to them, the hopeless victim role. I’m here to tell you gentleman that I swallowed it hook, line, and sinker!

    She had no friends (ANOTHER RED FLAG) As time went on, she was slowly but surely isolating me from my friends, and then started on my family. What happens is when you say that you want to go out with some of your friends instead of spend every waking moment with them you are met with the yelling, and anger. As time moves, you don’t want to anger the beast, so sooner or later you just don’t ask to see your friends anymore.

    She wanted to marry me and I her, so we were engaged (AGAIN, DUMB ME). As I have learned they will set up 2 different value systems, one for you and one for her. Example, I couldn’t utter a word about an ex-girlfriend without having to face her wrath. But, she could speak to an ex she had in South Carolina (800 miles from where we were). And I was suppose to be OK with it, and I was. I was going to try and show her that trust is a good thing. She had gotten word that he had been diagnosed with cancer, so I actually encouraged her to talk with this person cause he was going through a rough time and they were friends.

    I asked her one time, very nicely, if this friendship with this person was just that, a friendship, what sort of reaction do you think I got? You guessed it, rage, anger, and yelled at. I was told that was the most stupid question I had ever asked. If you don’t have trust in a relationship, then why be in one right? Well, we were engaged, we’re one day away from closing on a house in the place and city she wanted to live because of the school district she had to have her daughter in. I researched all of it and agreed with the decision. And of course, I’ve done all the work on what she wanted because she doesn’t know how to do it, and doesn’t want to learn how to do it. Everything she ever wanted was happening.

    All the while my body is trying to tell me to RUN (I was having heartburn everyday!) The weekend before we were suppose to close on the house she and her family went to SC to visit family and friends. Yep, friends, I encouraged her to go and have a good time because we were both stressed about the house and all. On the way back that Sunday, I get a text message saying she wants to move back to SC, I wonder why? Yep, she’s gonna move to be with him.

    I do consider myself lucky, cause this could have been much worse that what it was. My beast was one that stated “she liked living in her own world”, although as I found out later this beast has not been alone by herself for more than 3-4 months before entering another relationship since she was 16. She’s 25 now.

    What I don’t understand is why she left? Believe me I know it’s a good thing for me. Everything I’ve read states that these types of beasts don’t leave. Although I have been told by my therapist, and a few friends to be ready, cause at some point she is going to contact you.

    She went to SC with her car, her and her child’s clothes, her child’s toys. Very little savings and a non-existent credit line. And nothing else. She doesn’t own anything else. I just have a hard time wrapping my head around this?

    I am 6 weeks removed from the beast. I am still working through the emotions and what happened piece by piece, but as I do, I can see that I was nothing more than a puppet that was never going to get any of my energy back from her. She damn near sucked me completely dry.

    • shrink4men
      June 12, 2009 at 6:41 pm

      Hi Treyce,

      That’s quite a woman you had there. Yikes. You are very, very lucky she left of her own accord. I agree with your therapist and friends; she’ll resurface when her ex-boyfriend with cancer either dies or can’t attend to her every need and insecurity because he has cancer and is selfishly focusing on chemo treatments, etc.

      Why would she leave out of the blue and return to her ex? I suppose we could attribute it to some ill-conceived Florence Nightingale syndrome, but we all know these women only consider their needs and have no empathy. My hypothesis: she’s probably having some weird transference with the ex because her dad died of cancer and/or, if there’s a chance he won’t survive, she may try to get him to marry her so that she can take possession of whatever money and property he has.

      Be fortunate she left and that she’s safely 800 miles away. And when she does come slithering back into your life—bolt the door.

      Kind Regards,
      Dr T

      • Treyce
        June 12, 2009 at 8:33 pm

        Thanks so much for your quick response Dr. T! I just wanted to say that this sight has been a great source of information! As with most of us here, I think we all had the same reaction as to these types of women when they started their “drama”, and that response was “What the hell just happened?” or “Why am I getting knocked in the head with a 2×4 and still standing here taking it!?” This sight has answered many questions I had about what was going on in this “relationship”, if you want to call it that.

        The thing is about this ex-boyfriend is from what I understand, he has been diagnosed with cancer (which happens, its not a fault), but he also lives with his parents, doesn’t own any form of transportation, is on probation for who knows what, obviously doesn’t earn enough money to even support himself. And, one instance of where her aunt and a few of “these people” had a party and drank a bit much and this ex-boyfriend had “relations” with her aunt. Psycho!! She has always talked of SC and these people as being, shall we say quite an abundance of alcohol and drugs and not a good situation to be in.

        What worries me and hurts so bad is this is the type of environment that she is taking her 5 year old daughter too. I became quite attached to her little girl. And this little one has been through utter hell in her 5 years on this earth. She had just gotten use to not seeing her stepbrother, stepsister, and stepfather from my exes previous marriage, to now me being out of her life which she was aware of me and mommy getting married, now onto this SC environment to another male in her life. Now what do you think is gonna happen to this little girl by the time she turns 13?

        It also frightens me that she is using her daughter as her consistent need to fullfill her narcissistic feed…..

        My theory is that the “drama” in her life was about to come to an end with the house, good school district, and getting married (this would have been her second marriage). As I have learned these people MUST HAVE DRAMA going on ALL THE TIME in order to fill their empty shells. Your thoughts?

        • shrink4men
          June 17, 2009 at 6:37 pm

          Hi Treyce,

          I agree with your analysis. These women feed off of drama. They’re also incredibly self-destructive. As one of my other readers points out, these women can only have “relationships” with two types of men: “hand puppets” and dominating abusive types.

          You don’t want to be either, so it’s best she left. She’ll resurface though, sooner or later. This guy will hurt her again and sleep with her mother (yick) and she’ll magnanimously give you a chance to win her back. When that time comes, my advice is: Don’t do it.

          As for her daughter, that’s a real tragedy. The kid will probably end up developing plenty of issues, however, this is not your responsibility. You can’t save the child by becoming the mother’s punching bag. You have no legal rights. These women shouldn’t be allowed to reproduce, but they do and perpetuate another generation of their craziness. It’s not fair. It’s not right, but it’s just the way it is.

          You need to focus on yourself now and put your life back together. Be grateful she left when she did and don’t look back.

          Kind Regards,
          Dr Tara

          • Kayla
            July 7, 2009 at 2:33 am

            Dr. Tara,

            I just googled “how to deal with a crazy person” to find a way to deal with my estranged husband (currently divorcing) and just happened to come across this site.
            I am shocked to see some of the posts you have left on this site. Yes, woman can abuse men and a few of these posts from these men brought tears to my eyes. I feel their pain and it gives me hope that there are caring and responsible men out there. These men will appreciate and savor a healthy relationship when they find one.

            However, I find it unreal that you would support one of these “men” who admits to hitting their girlfriend and claims to have suffered emotional abuse from her. Losing control over your own emotions and striking somone is your fault. For him to even say that she is now using that as a tool of torture against him is truly disgusting. Clearly, he is an abuser and you just minimized his behaviour by placing the blame on his girlfriend.

            So when a woman gets upset because she is being mistreated by her lover it’s abuse? When she is crying it’s because she wants you to feel sorry for her? Really? Why can’t it be a reaction to mean and hateful remark made by her lover? Could it be that she was hurt?

            Am I one of these narcissitic women because I found myself in an abusive relationship? I asked for it? Or maybe I do like expensive purses so that makes me materialistic? Or I changed the locks to our home because I wanted to push his buttons? What?! How about I feared for my life! I could just imagine how this site would help my husband justify all of his actions.

            • shrink4men
              July 7, 2009 at 2:52 am

              Hi Kayla,

              I’m not sure exactly what you’re referencing. However, I can state with all certainty that nowhere on my site do I condone physical violence, whether it’s perpetrated by a woman or man. It seems to me you came across information that empathizes with and supports men who have been the target of emotional and physical abuse by women and you defaulted to an “anyone who says anything against women is a sexist woman hater.” Women are just as capable of being physically and emotionally abusive as men are and men who have been the targets of abuse are just as deserving of help and support as women who find themselves in these situations.

              Before hurling accusations at me you need to get your facts straight. I state time and again on my site that violence is wrong and there is no excuse for it. It might interest you to know that the only comments on my site in which violence has been threatened were written by women and I deleted them.

              Best,
              Dr Tara

    • Mr. E.
      June 12, 2009 at 6:59 pm

      “As I have learned they will set up 2 different value systems, one for you and one for her. ”

      Sounds familiar. Back in the day, mine even had a name for rules which applied to me but not to her.

      …And I thought that was just how women acted.

      Speaking of “acting,” now that I think on it, back during one of her first big rages at me, I thought to myself “this is like something out of a movie.”

      • shrink4men
        June 12, 2009 at 7:05 pm

        And many women who go into the acting profession have BPD/NPD traits. They also know how to turn their high drama and melodramatics on and off like a switch.

  5. Bob
    May 28, 2009 at 3:04 am

    I’ve been watching this thread and it is my story. You break my heart Anthony. I went without contact from mid Feb until 3 weeks ago. I was feeling better. The phone rang one night when she wanted some and I went. I have been suffering ever since. Having to wind down again…all over again from just one night with her. I have changed my phone number of ten years since then. My email is blocked. It is the most difficult thing I’ve done in my life. It defys logic and reason but it’s true….I have become hopelessly addicted to a very sick woman that has no love..only a need to use.. I had over the years of abuse and sex become addicted like a pound of heroin a day. NO CONTACT for guys like us is the only chance for us to live. THEY WILL NEVER< EVER< EVER CHANGE. they can't. Trying to control them or yourself through better understanding is absolutly futile…I tried it for 5 1/2 years. I read all the BPD books…The abuse and betrayal just continues to worsen as I got even more dependant. They are loveless vampires. They are broken and I have gotten very, very sick from my long involvement with her…Save yourself…. NO CONTACT when you decide you want to live. There is no other way.

    • JH
      December 6, 2011 at 7:43 pm

      This post is just what I needed right now, thank you, Bob.

      I see you posted over two years ago and can only hope you got out. I’ve been 3-4 months NC from my BPD ex, and the holiday season is approaching and she’ll be back in town for a month. I’ve known about her return for weeks and have been utterly dreading it. I’ve been terrified about how I’ll react, how weak I might become, how I might just crumble when she knocks on my door for another bite of me.

      So far I’ve been strong and very certain about how I’ll refuse any contact, but as the day she gets into town approaches I’ve been weakening. I’ve imagined all sorts of potential dialogue with her (wow – maybe I ought to tell her about her BPD? maybe I ought to just unload on her? Tell her exactly who she is and how cruel and empty she is….on and on). I finally realised how weak I was when I’d sort of concluded that I might just let her in for a little sex. How harmless can that be, right?

      Well, almost as soon as I’d made that decision I began to get those same awful feelings she constantly inspired in me, and she’s not even back at my door yet. Your post has given me a timely wake up cal:, I just hope I can stay strong enough throughout the next few weeks to keep her at bay. If you don’t invite a vampire into your home, they can’t hurt you, right?

  6. ted
    May 27, 2009 at 5:24 pm

    Anthony, stop already! When you start thinking about her get your butt outside and run ’til you puke. When you start thinking about her again, repeat above advice. Eventually, you’ll either stop thinking abut her and/or you’ll be in great shape and attracting better women. Now lace-up brother.

    • shrink4men
      May 27, 2009 at 6:16 pm

      Great suggestion, Ted.

      Anthony, it’s interesting that the image I use at the top of my post is that of a man banging his head against a wall. It’s interesting because that’s how I feel with each new question you ask about why this woman does what she does, what it means and if you should be more patient or apologize.

      Reread the first few sentences of this post:

      Why does she act this way? Why does she treat me like this? Why did she say that? Why can’t she be nice? Why? Why? Why?

      The short answer is: Because she’s crazy. You’ll make yourself crazy if you try to find meaning in her meaningless and casually cruel behaviors. . . a life without meaning isn’t worth living but, sometimes, in certain situations and with certain people, there is no greater meaning to be found other than they just. . . suck.”

      For the one thousand and one other “why” questions you have about this woman and your “relationship,” just apply the above statements. That’s you’re answer. I’m struggling to feel empathy for you, Anthony.

      Right now, in regard to your insistence that this is a viable woman and relationship, you are your own worst enemy. Every time you reach out to her, every time you apologize, every time you give her another chance, you’re essentially dousing yourself with gasoline and handing her a book of matches, while she coldly and cruelly smirks at you.

      Stop already, Anthony.

      • jp
        May 27, 2009 at 8:35 pm

        Anthony,

        This is what I hear in your posts:

        1. You’re in a tremendous amount of pain.

        2. You hide from the pain by obsessing over her. Her abuse is rejection and that is what’s REAL…but you can’t seem to face it. So your mind goes into hyperdrive trying to think your way out of it.

        3. Your obsessive thinking is becoming more repetitive and monotonous. You ruminate over the minutiae of every interaction with her, asking basically the same questions over and over again hoping desperately to find different answers…some clue or interpretation that will allow you to bring this relationship back from the dead. But you’ve reached the limits of what your intellect and the analysis of others can offer. Your heart is encrusted with pain while your mind’s spinning and spinning.

        4. You’re probably addicted to the highs and lows of the the drama.

        5. Your sense of your own worth is in the toilet, while you’ve invested her with almost god-like power: if you can make her treat you lovingly you’re worth something, if you can’t then you’re nothing. It’s no wonder you’re working so hard to ‘understand her’.

        6. This drama is probably consuming your life. How many hours per day are you thinking about her? How present are you for other activities and other people? Do you have any other sources of validation or connection? Are you taking any steps to rebuild your life or are you staring at the walls thinking only of her?

        Your connection with her seems to have degenerated into some kind of self-punishing ritual. You sound like a guy in crisis who needs help getting back on track. At the very least you need to go strictly no-contact with this woman and start focusing on yourself. I don’t think she’s the problem.

        For goodness sake, be kind to yourself. Give your mind a rest before it blows a gasket. Let the pain come. Your system wants to grieve…let it. It won’t last forever and it will ultimately be a relief.

        JP

        • shrink4men
          May 27, 2009 at 9:00 pm

          First of all, thanks to Ted, Thom and JP for joining the conversation and sharing your personal experiences and wisdom in an effort to try to help Anthony. It’s very generous and kind of you all.

          Anthony, please pay particular attention to JP’s last comment. He hits the nail right on the head. Don’t read it and immediately jump to, “yes, but…” or “I understand, but what about this….” Really take some time and think about what he’s saying. Get off the hamster wheel. You’re spinning and spinning and spinning in circles and not getting anywhere.

          When you start obsessing about this woman, take that time and energy and direct it toward your physical fitness, your relationship with your child and the school program you’re just starting. If you took a fraction of the time and energy you spend on obsessing about this woman and applied it to something that’s healthy and productive, heaven only knows what you can achieve.

          Ultimately, if you can’t let go of this because you need to prove to yourself that you’re worthy, lovable—whatever the issue is that keeps you from letting go, there are other websites and forums online that will tell you that you “shouldn’t give up on love,” no matter how painful it is. However, this is NOT one of those websites.

          Anthony, strangers have taken time out of their lives to share their advice with you. They have been in your shoes. They know, firsthand, what you’re going through and they managed to break free, heal and move on with their lives. Stop looking for some redeemable quality that doesn’t exist in this woman and listen to what these men have to say.

          • Ralph
            June 4, 2009 at 4:41 am

            Anthony. I got out of a similar situation but not necessarily because I knew what I was doing. I started (probably as self-preservation) simply leaving the area when she was doing her thing. If she she showed up and started her crap, I left the building. If she started her criticism and tantrums, I left the building. I even left her in a hotel room by herself then went back and picked her up the next day. (more than once) In other words, when the abuse started, button pushing, criticisms, etc.,.I bolted for the door. No explanations, no drama. Just left. She had me close to physical violence many times, something I have never done in my life. I never did but I have to admit I spat in her face once she had me so worked up. Of course, I never heard the end of that or how abusive I was. This is after she had needled me for 3 hours and I promise you, she would never listen to reason. Eventually, she pulled the plug on our relationship because I wasn’t playing the game. This took a long time though. About a year. Of course, she blamed me for “not being there when she needed me” etc.., and she had lined up somewhere else to go. Now she’s texting me about how unhappy she is and how it’s my fault she moved in with this other guy. Who coincidentally, is a cold fish who abuses her. See the pattern? Get out.

            • Anthony
              June 10, 2009 at 1:28 pm

              To “everyone” that commented in my thread… I just want to thank everyone for their comments and advice. It is very thoughtful and generous! I’m thinking of changing my phone number, email etc…but I think that gives her more power and control that she doesn’t deserve.

              Does anyone know if these creatures have a “primary” target? And if they can’t have their “primary” target do they try and fill the void with someone else only to come back to the primary target?

              Anthony

              • shrink4men
                June 12, 2009 at 4:45 am

                Hi Anthony,

                If you’re giving her attention, then you become her primary target. If you cut her out of her life, she’ll find someone else upon whom to focus the full sunshine of her abuse. Women like your ex view people as objects to be used. If you don’t giver her the attention, reactions, etc., that she seeks, she’ll simply find another person to feed off of.

                You’re not special to her, Anthony. I’m not writing this to hurt you. She doesn’t see any man as special or worthy of her. All people are objects for her to abuse and use. I know it’s difficult and painful to accept this, but it’s just the way it is.

                You are a special and worthwhile person. Have you started your school program yet and if so, how’s it going?

                Dr T

                • Anthony
                  June 12, 2009 at 1:48 pm

                  Dr. T

                  I do hear you! The only time I felt a little special is when she actually “tattooed” my name on her lower back. She still has never fully removed it. Who knows what that is all about. Also, do these women really want to be married or just use it as a hook so you’ll stick around longer?

                  The good thing is as I step away from this mess, I’m starting to realize “again” that this person lacks everything that I am. Worthy, dam straight she’s not worthy. Of me.

                  Didn’t start school yet. I’m supposed to start on June 25th. To be honest, I’m depressed and doubting myself to stay focused to get through the program. Although, I have good friends, family and support to keep me motivated.

                  Yes, it is hard to “accept” that other human beings act and behave this way! Sometimes I really believe it has to be the work of the devil.

                  Dr. T- You know what I was thinking….you should start a single dating site for all of us good guys on here! That would really help us get out and stay away from these really sick women! lol…. BTW, lot of healthy women looking for good men too. Hey, you never know… Don’t worry, I’ll want nothing for the idea.

                  Speaking of dating, when do you think a good time to start
                  is?

                  Also, what do you think about my comment above about my phone number etc…?

                  As always, thank you for your time and generosity.

                  Anthony

                  • shrink4men
                    June 12, 2009 at 7:03 pm

                    A tattoo on her ass. . . Nothing says “love” like a little self-mutilation! Sorry, that’s a bad joke. These women can be very impulsive, which would seem to indicate that they shouldn’t do anything to their bodies that’s permanent.

                    People get married for lots of different reasons. I think women like your ex view marriage as:

                    1. A symbol of normalcy. “See! I’m normal. I’m getting married, which is what adults are supposed to do. There’s nothing wrong with me.
                    2. A way to further their control over you.
                    3. A way to stake a claim on your assets and future earnings. These women see marriage and money like this, “What’s yours is mine and what’s mine is mine.”
                    4. A legally binding way that makes it more difficult to leave them should you ever come to your senses. Once you marry one of these women, the law typically enables them to punish you, financially rape you and turn your kid(s) against you.

                    Anthony, don’t let this woman distract you from what really matters. Throw yourself into the school program. It’s a great way to keep your mind occupied on something that isn’t her and a fantastic way to build your confidence and restore your self-esteem. Be prepared to hear from her right about the time the program begins. These women have radar. They seem to sense when you’re about to do something good for yourself that will help make you healthier and therefore less susceptible to their abuse. My hunch is she’ll come swooping back into your life a few days before or after your first class. Don’t let her screw that up for you, Anthony. Keep your eye on the prize, not the booby prize.

                    An NPD/BPD free dating site is a great idea, but I’ve no idea how you’d even screen for that. This blog is labor intensive enough. Maybe a book instead. Don’t know.

                    As for resuming dating, I think you might want to take a break and do a little work to find out what draws you to this woman so that you don’t end up with someone like her again. If you don’t want to change your number, etc., that’s your choice. Just be sure not to answer when she calls, emails, texts or knocks.

                    Best,
                    Dr Tara

                    • Anthony
                      June 14, 2009 at 12:40 am

                      Dr. T

                      Thank you for your advice and comments. They’re really helpful! Regarding your hunch on when I might here from her, I don’t think I will…which is a good thing. I seen her last week at my fitness center and I acted like she didn’t exist. Naturally, following… I got a horrible text message saying, “what a loser I am and how she feel in love with me baffles her”! Much more, but why bother.

                      I think she knows after all this time that I’ve seen all of her bags of tricks. This is why I don’t think she’ll come around anymore. Besides, I’m sure she’s out on the prowl anyway looking for money bags.

                      Anthony

        • Michael Puleo
          November 7, 2009 at 6:18 am

          Everyone who made comments on this website about this disorder “hit the nail right on the head”. All these stories closely resemble mine. The biggest cover-up most confusing to me is that she is the executive secretary to the top brass at JP.Morgan Co. It doesn’t mean… if she has a great job she has her s**t together… means nothing. Hey everyone… what about she stopping her birth control and hasn’t told me for 2 months….this is a real kicker!!! She drove me nuts, expected me to read minds, yelled at me in a restaurant for speaking to the waiter about my french fries that were raw, and so many other times where abuse was present. The best thing that happened was reading these posts because I have closure now. A nightmare for me is having sex with her, because its phenomenal and accidently getting her pregnant and having to associate with her the rest of my life. A minutes long orgasm is not worth it. Her extreme ways of pleasing me sexually were great. I love her,(or maybe it’s the sex) she is a good person, beautiful, runs marathons but her goodness is poisoned by this disorder which makes it very bad and ugly. I tried so many times to work things out that I feel like a punching bag, beaten-up by this relationship. I will not feel guilty like it was me, because she is brainwashing me to believe this. If I did not see her 7 days a week…look-out!! the abuse would begin again. Guys leave this type of relationship and have closure.Once we are over it in our minds we can have the confidence when approaching woman again. If your ex-girlfriend is with other men/man having sex after your relationship, so be it. I/you will be sexual with another woman. You can’t change this person. How about this one…if I did not go mountain climbing with her she would blow-up and get really nasty. It was a tremendous sacrifice for me since I am the type to sit in my recliner, drink a beer and watch mountain climbing on TV or the UFC Fighting championship, etc. Last comment is that the 2 week we were seeing/dating each other she wanted to travel the world with me. I commented that in time, she got totally pissed-off. Also make sure every woman you date have a STD/HIV testing done. She and I had it done (both NEG.) by my request because I sensed in the beginning something was not completely kosher with her, I’m glad I did, because of our past wild sex/love-making. When I was tired once because I am a weightlifter/powerlifter and train hard and did not want to have sex, even though it always happens, she threw a temper tantrum and a “silence” period with me. It is time to feel anew and alive again men.

      • jham123
        September 24, 2009 at 3:18 pm

        OMG JP!!!

        That is so awesomely correct!!!

  7. jp
    May 26, 2009 at 2:07 am

    Anthony,

    Don’t beat yourself up wondering if you’re ‘weak’. Even Superman had his kryptonite and that’s what this woman is for you.

    Part of her power is that she’s able to tap into your insecurities…insecurities that may have been there already but that have certainly been inflamed by her punishing abuse of you. She even has you wondering if your own feelings are “accurate”. Of course they are.

    You can never know for sure what her motives are. To avoid ‘analysis paralysis’ you should assume the worst of her and act accordingly.

    Cut her out your life completely. Join a different gym. There’s no shame in protecting yourself and your family from this predator.

    • Anthony
      May 26, 2009 at 1:51 pm

      JP – Thanks for commenting. Not sure exactly what you mean by, “to avoid analysis paralysis”?

      I do understand cut her out of my life completely, but why would she continue to go to a gym that she knows I belong to?

      • jp
        May 27, 2009 at 12:38 am

        Anthony,

        “To avoid analysis paralysis…” just means you’re at risk of getting stuck in the trap of over-analyzing the ex to the point where it cripples your ability or willingness to take action.

        Most people rely on their feelings and instincts when asessing a relationship. If the relationship or the partner makes them consistently feel bad, they get out.

        You seem to be going a different route. Instead of facing the reality that it’s impossible to have a healthy relationship with this woman, and dealing with the pain, you’re trying to think your way to a different conclusion.

        Your questions about her motives show that you’re still thinking “if I can figure out what makes her tick then I can fix her/manipulate her/give her what she wants/etc. and then she’ll HAVE to treat me good/love me/be with me/etc.”.

        But like the good Doc has pointed out, this is an illusion. There is no puzzle here for you to solve.

        Your obsession with her and her motives is a defense mechanism to shield you from the pain of her rejection and abuse. It’s a way to keep feeling involved with her, as if there were still a ‘relationship’.

        Forget about what you think. Do you FEEL loved by this woman? Would you know what it feels like if you were?

        If you get away from her and stay away, she’ll soon move on to fresh prey. That’s for certain. The only unknown is: are you ready to let this nightmare end, or are you still hungry for more abuse?

        • shrink4men
          May 27, 2009 at 12:57 am

          Anthony,

          I agree 100% with what JP writes. This is why I won’t answer any more of your “why” questions—they all have the same answer.

          The real question you need to ask yourself, which JP poses, is :Are you still hungry for more abuse?

          Dr T

    • shrink4men
      May 26, 2009 at 2:57 pm

      Great advice, JP. I couldn’t have said it better myself.

      Kind Regards,
      Dr T

      • Anthony
        May 27, 2009 at 5:16 pm

        JP & Dr. T.

        I do get it, but as you know… it’s hard! Our last argument made me feel bad because I can have a temper, so I fired back and hit below the belt. (I told her “after” she said that I do not look “attractive” that I’m sitting around all day doing nothing because I’m out of work. Also, your daughter is upstairs and you’re on the phone. Get off. What am I, your “babysitter”? I’m done!! You’re always talking to your family and friends about me too, and I had it. Then I said, “well the way you’re acting right now is why they don’t like you”. Then she said, “well maybe you should listen to them”. Good luck to you! I’m done, she said with a “cold” smirk. That’s when I lost it and said, “well at least I don’t have to f*** guys to get where I’m going in life”. That’s not “attractive”. It was not not the right thing to say and not the person that I am, or want to be. Two wrongs don’t make a right, and I obviously stooped to her level.

        I realize that I can only be responsible for “my” part in the argument. Not hers too. However, I felt like I should have apologized after the incident for my actions/words, but I did not. Now I feel crappy and guilty that I should have at least apologized? It has been a week since the argument. Any more advice?

        I also feel like at times that I’m not happy with myself and where I need to be emotionally and financially as well. (I just feel like if “I” get myself together, then things could work between us). What also messes me up is that she’s in therapy and I’m sure she’s trying to mitigate/change her behavior. I have seen some improvement in her behavior over the years. (Who knows… maybe because I”m not falling for some of it anymore).

        However, when things get stressed and a problem arises/misunderstanding happens she takes the easy way out shuts down and bolts. Based on your experiences, JP why do you think this happens? I also know that I can pick out some of her flaws, but I’m not intentionally trying to hurt her. (She say’s I’m attacking her, even when I’m calm). I’m just trying to give her some insight of her behavior and how it affects me/us. Sometimes that’s where I say to myself, “that’s her therapists job…not yours). This is why I also feel guilty. She has said to me, don’t treat me like a handicap.

        She also say’s things like, you don’t think I can be alone? Test me. You go to school for nine months and I will be by myself! You’re the only one I want to be with! However, she shuts down changes the locks and breaks up over an argument. Maybe she has had enough too?

        Thanks for replying and listening to my broken record. It is helpful to me, and I do appreciate your efforts.

        Sincerely,

        Anthony

  8. thom
    May 25, 2009 at 11:30 pm

    Anthony –

    I feel for you man – I really do. I am about 9 months removed from my ex and I know what you are going through. What Dr T has told you is the truth.

    There is nothing you can do for her. She will not change. She will not thank you. She can not have an adult, intimate, equal partnership type relationship with you…and she probably never will with anyone else until she decides to do some work on herself.

    The second you set up concrete boundaries and hold her accountable for her destructive behaviors she will move on to someone else and never think about you again…

    Please read the following parable.

    http://allaboutfrogs.org/stories/scorpion.html

    These women are like the scorpion…they are what they are (ironically my ex is actually a scorpio)

    Imagine that I bump into you on the street. We look up and I ask you to try and fly to the moon. Not with a space ship, or a rocket, but by flapping your wings….

    It can’t be done. And asking for someone with NPD/BPD to feel any empathy, remorse, or love is equally futile.

    You can have the most money, have great sex, let them do what they please – but you cannot fill the bottomless pit that is their neediness.

    First they must learn to love themselves – and there is nothing you can do to speed up that process…

    There are plenty of healthy, intelligent, beautiful women in this world. Let go of her and try to move on.

    It is very hard at first – but it gets better each and every day.

    Sincerely

    T

  9. Mr. E.
    May 21, 2009 at 5:21 pm

    I just wanted to say that all the “mens” articles on the heart-2-heart site are valuable and worth reading through. The brainwashing page is great because it doesn’t just define the abusive actions, it explains what those actions do to the target. Eg – here’s why you’re confused and feeling like you’re nuts.

    One thing I think should be mentioned along with the abuse info is that when the light finally comes on, the target can go through the stages of grieving, even before getting out.

    • shrink4men
      May 21, 2009 at 5:26 pm

      How right you are, Mr E. The grieving process can start while you’re still in the relationship when it finally dawns on you what this woman has done to you and what you have tolerated and permitted. In fact, this awareness and grieving process can be so painful that it effectively paralyzes some men from ending the relationship. The realization and feelings are so painful, many men bury it down, choosing not to deal with it and go through the rest of their lives as resentful, muted zombies.

      If you can feel the pain and realize that it won’t kill you or make you go crazy, you can get through it. It’s natural to feel grief and pain in reaction to abusive relationships. Feel the feelings, make some decisions and then take purposeful, constructive action.

  10. Anthony
    April 25, 2009 at 3:29 pm

    Dr. T

    Any advice on my last comment?

    Anthony

    • shrink4men
      April 25, 2009 at 4:26 pm

      Hi Anthony,

      Sorry for my delayed reply. Unfortunately, I can’t always respond as quickly as I like because of work responsibilities and my personal life. It’s what I do in my spare time for the moment.

      As I don’t know your ex, I can’t say with total certainty what goes on in her head and what her motivations are. However, women who share the characteristics and behaviors you describe your ex-girlfriend as having are highly manipulative and often use therapy to control and further abuse their husbands/boyfriends.

      Most BPDs/NPDs can’t tolerate effective therapy because it puts boundaries in place and holds them accountable for their behaviors. Most of them use therapy to complain and blame others. Therapy (or any other promises to “make things better”) are usually meaningless ploys to either a) get you to do whatever it is they want you to do; b) to get you to shut up and do as you’re told; and/or c) co-opt the the therapist into blaming you and guilt you into staying in the relationship.

      I don’t know in what capacity you spoke to your priest, but my understanding is that confessions are confidential. Are you the one who told her you spoke to the priest or did the priest break your confidence? If you told her about your chat with the priest, I wonder if, on some level, you wanted to antagonize her? If so, it’s only natural to want to hurt someone back who has been hurting you. Just keep in mind that emotionally abusive bullies become extremely nasty when you expose or threaten to expose their ugly behaviors to others.

      I don’t know if the documentation you have re: her diagnosis can protect you legally should she try to cause trouble. You’ll have to consult with an attorney on that one. To the best of my knowledge, posting a comment on a blog is not illegal. Meanwhile, I encourage you to find some professional support to help you find your way out of this relationship for once and for all.

      Best,
      Dr T

      • Anthony
        April 25, 2009 at 6:52 pm

        Dr. T.

        I understand that you’re busy… I just didn’t know if maybe I said something wrong.

        Anyway, I told her about going to the priest. I did not go to him to antagonize her in any way. I went to him because I was hurting and needed some spiritual guidance. I also don’t believe you should return evil-for-evil so to speak.

        I am in therapy for myself and have great friends to lean on. It’s just so baffling to me how someone can say they love you, and basically just put you down. Hey, we all get mad, but this behavior is overboard! I guess the abused, abuse? If so, why do they really abuse? Does it make them feel better? Or, is it because they’re that miserable? My friends do tell me that these types of people do get there’s in the end. One of my best friends said, “you reap what you sow”. Sad because when she’s calm, she cries to me and really say’s she sorry for the way she treats me. I do see remorse in her eyes at times. Or… maybe I’m just a fool. My mother say’s she knows exactly what’s she’s doing. Funny, because she’s afraid of my mother and cannot confront her. One of my friends said to me, “what does that tell you”?

        Thank you so much for your time and patience!

        Anthony

        • shrink4men
          April 26, 2009 at 3:35 pm

          Hi Anthony,

          I didn’t mean you went to the priest to antagonize her. I’m sure you went to him for support and you absolutely have a right to seek help. I was asking if you told her that you talked to the priest to tick her off because you’re upset by her behaviors. I’m wondering what you hoped to gain by telling her you spoke to the priest.

          These women get nasty and vindictive, as all emotionally abusive bullies do, when you expose them for what and who they are to others. Telling her you spoke to the priest just seems to have upped the drama. If that’s what you want to do, ok, just be aware of it. However, if you want to peacefuly go on with your life and not have this woman mess with your daughter, end the relationship and don’t respond to calls or emails.

          To answer your question, yes, abusing you makes her feel good and she does it because she’s miserable. It’s how these women feel powerful and in control. They project their garbage onto others, so they don’t have to feel the way they make you feel. I agree with your mother. This woman’s fleeting moments of remorse are meaningless unless she actually changes her behavior.

          Best,
          Dr T

          • Anthony
            April 27, 2009 at 2:53 am

            Dr T.

            Thank you for all of your support and responses. I just have a couple more questions for my sanity. lol…

            1. Why do all or most of these types of women seem to be so materialistic and/or money driven/obsessed? (Extremely high maintenance).

            2. Do NPD/BPD get better with age or worse? I believe when their looks start to deteriorate, they’re really in trouble. Another therapist told me that they also do not live long lives. Is that true?

            3. Can they really change and be normal? Or, is it just wishful thinking or a long shot? What should I look for if she is really changing? If she starts dating again, that’s not a good sign…is it?

            FYI…I gave her the book, “I hate you don’t leave me” and she emailed me saying I now have BPD. She broke down the criterion of why I even have it based on things that I told her about my life/self. Unbelievable.

            Sincerely,

            Anthony

            • shrink4men
              April 28, 2009 at 3:08 am

              Hi Anthony,

              1. Most NPDs/BPDs are extremely entitled. They believe they deserve special treatment and material goods without having to work for them. They value superficial appearances, which is why they’re materialistic and obsessed with money.

              2. NPDs/BPDs generally get worse with age. It’s harder for them to avoid reality when they look in the mirror. They can become more shut down and/or more delusional. I don’t know about longevity. That’s a hard statistic to calculate due to misdiagnosis or under diagnosis. NPD/BPD women who are drug addicted probably have a shorter life expectancy. There are other correlational factors such as poor self-care habits and lack of social support (since they usually end up driving people who care about them out of their lives).

              3. It’s extremely highly unlikely that these women will ever change. In order to change, you have to first admit that you have a problem and then do the work. Most of these women don’t believe they have a problem.

              Anthony, instead of looking for signs that this woman is changing and trying to find the meaning behind her hurtful behaviors, I strongly encourage you to explore your emotional dependency on this woman and break the habit. Ultimately, it doesn’t matter why she is the way she is. There is no greater meaning behind the things she says and does beyond she’s an abusive personality and she sucks. You can’t fix her. You can’t make her treat you better.

              However, you can treat yourself better. You can take actions that change you and your life. Seriously, you’ve got to let it go and move on.

              Kind Regards,
              Dr T

              • Anthony
                May 21, 2009 at 2:48 pm

                Dr T

                Writing to you again because, I”m confused and hurting. Tried to work things out with my girlfriend and had another blowout because I felt like she was criticizing and belittling me. I have been out of work as you know, so I decided to go back to school starting in June. I would like to get skilled in the computer field so I can get some secured employment. So, I have been collecting unemployment and trying to find some cash jobs at night. She approached me the other day and said, “what have you been doing all day”? I told her I went shopping for a t-shirt for the summer. (15 dollars) She replied, “that’s really not “attractive” you should be looking for work! You’re not even trying! You’re being irresponsible! You’re not looking hard enough. Don’t come complaining to me if you can’t pay your bills. She keep on and on about this after I explained myself weeks ago. I need some time to myself and some breathing room before I start school. I believe this is all tied into her calling me a bum several weeks ago. So, I fired back because I’m tired of the abuse. I said, “well a least I don’t have to sleep with men to get were I’m going in life”. That’s not “attractive”. The whole time this is going on she’s telling me I’m “done”. Good luck with yourself. You’re going to need it. I left because I caught what she was trying to do, which I think is to provoke or just push me out of her life. That next day I found out she changed the locks “again” to her place, but never gave me my key back. I have not called her, and not heard from her. It’s like I’m cast out for not measuring up to “her” standards. No I feel guilty like I did something wrong. My friends and family said that you defended yourself because she was criticizing and belittling you! They said you might have said some hurtful things, but she was pushing your buttons and provoking you… which is natural especially the way she treats you. Still, I feel guilty for saying them. What do I do now and how do I stop feeling this way? I’m a kind person, but I can have a temper. However, I don’t feel good about saying mean things. Do I apologize to her for the things I said? My mother say’s this is how she wants you to feel. She wants you to take responsibility while she takes none. She want’s you to feel bad, this justify “her” behavior. You have a lot on your plate and look how she treats you. She should be ashamed of herself. This means she should change the locks (again) and act like you don’t exist? Real nice my mother said.

                I would appreciate your feedback!

                Anthony

                • shrink4men
                  May 21, 2009 at 3:37 pm

                  Hi Anthony,

                  Your mother is right. Listen to her and everyone else. Don’t listen to your ex-girlfriend. It’s like swallowing handfuls of poison.

                  Try focusing on the school program you’re beginning in June. That’s very exciting and something to feel proud about! Don’t let your ex get in your head and twist this up for you, too.

                  Read this link on brainwashing techniques: http://www.heart-2-heart.ca/men/page3.html. It might help you understand why you’re feeling guilty—because your ex has brainwashed you into thinking and feeling this way. You’re going to have to be the one to decide, “I’ve had enough” and move on in your life for once and for all. Women like your on again off again ex never tire of this crazy dance.

                  Please, Anthony, LET IT GO.

                  Best,
                  Dr T

                  • Anthony
                    May 21, 2009 at 4:06 pm

                    Dr T.

                    Thank you for the time. I’m working with my Therapist to stay away. However, I don’t think I’ll hear from her anymore and I don’t know how I feel about that!

                    Everybody has told me that…oh no, you’ll hear from her! It’s what you do with it that matters. What do you think?

                    You’re a sweetheart!

                    Anthony

                    • shrink4men
                      May 21, 2009 at 4:46 pm

                      Of course, you’re going to hear from her, Anthony. That’s the pattern the two of you have established. It’s like the swallows returning to Capistrano, salmon swimming up stream, the sun rising everyday.

                      These women are like psychotic boomerangs—they always come back for more. ALWAYS. You have to be the one to end it for once and for all. Like everything else in your warped relationship with this woman, it’s entirely on you.

                      Do you want round 1,009 of the same old same old BS or do you want to move on with your life and have a chance with a healthy relationship? Your choice. Period.

                      Dr T

                    • Anthony
                      May 21, 2009 at 8:46 pm

                      Dr T – A.K.A Sweetheart

                      That’s the hardest part or your last question. Do you want to move on with your life and have a chance with a healthy relationship? The answer is yes, but I want it to be with her. When you say come back for more, what do you mean? I do believe that she does love me, but what does she really want from me? Doesn’t she want a family life. Why does she do this (cut me out) over basically nothing. What does changing the locks really mean? Sometimes I really wonder if she has any respect for me at all.

                      Thank you so much!

                      Anthony

                    • shrink4men
                      May 21, 2009 at 9:06 pm

                      I mean more of the same, Anthony. More drama, more abuse, more just plain meanness and hurting your feelings on purpose, more cutting you off and then more getting back together again. There’s no “more” to it than that.

                      Unfortunately, you’re never going to have the kind of life you want to have with this woman. Never, ever, never. She’s not capable of it. You can’t love her enough or be patient enough or set enough boundaries with her to get her to change into the woman you want. It just ain’t gonna happen.

                      All she wants is to keep yanking your chain, to keep hurting you and keep you crawling back for more. It makes her feel powerful. Making you (and others) feel bad is the only way she can make herself feel good. It’s sick and it’s sad, but that’s the way it is and, I know I’m repeating myself, but, YOU CAN”T CHANGE HER.

                      Changing the locks or her email/voicemail passwords doesn’t mean anything more than she’s just pushing your buttons and hurting you because that’s how she gets her rocks off. There’s nothing more to read into it. Stop wondering if she has any respect for you—she doesn’t. She treats you like crap and you keep going back. She doesn’t respect anyone, not even herself.

                      You’ve got to let it go, Anthony. Wake up.

                    • Anthony
                      May 22, 2009 at 1:10 pm

                      Dr T.

                      So long and short of it, she purposely does these things to hurt me? If so, is BPD/NPD really a mental illness? I kinda believed that she really could not help herself and did not mean to behave they way she does. (This is why I take her back because I understand where her pain comes from). I also thought there was some type of Psychosis going on. Yet… she works hard, maybe too hard… and functions at work. Why is that? Maybe she’s fooling everybody, and is not sick/crazy after all.

                      As always, thanks for your comments…

                    • shrink4men
                      May 22, 2009 at 6:13 pm

                      Hi Anthony,

                      Rattlesnakes can’t help striking people and shooting them full of venom. They can’t help it; it’s their nature, but that doesn’t mean you should snuggle up to one.

                      BPD and NPD are personality disorders, which means that, technically, they’re mental illnesses. However, unlike people who suffer from depression and severe anxiety, most people with personality disorders don’t see themselves as the problem. In their world, they’re just fine—everyone else is the problem, everyone else is to blame, which is why these people are damn near impossible to help in treatment.

                      Forget about understanding where her pain comes from. What about your pain? She is sick and crazy, but many people like her can function at work and in other areas of their lives just fine, but not where it matters most; in their personal relationships.

                      You seem to be grasping for someone, anyone—your friends, family, therapists, your priest and me—to give you reasons and/or permission to continue pursuing a relationship with this woman. The only reasons I have for you are reasons why you should cease all contact with her, get the help you need to let go of this relationship and move on with your life.

                      I understand you want to know why this woman does the things she does—why she mistreats you, hurts you and pushes you away. I’m here to tell you the reasons “why” DON’T MATTER. You are wasting your time, your friends’ time and your family’s time looking for someone to tell you, “Just hang in there, Anthony. Be patient. She’ll come around. It’s going to be ok.” It’s not going to be ok. It’s never going to be ok with her. I don’t know how much clearer I can make this for you, Anthony.

                      If you want to spend the rest of your life being tortured by this woman, that’s your choice, but you need to be clear and honest with yourself about it. If you can’t let go, for whatever reason, you need to accept the fact that what you see with this woman is what you get. You can expect the push-you/pull-you behaviors, verbal abuse, cutting you off, changing locks and passwords, screwing other guys—all of it—to continue.

                      If that’s what you want, go for it, but quit chasing after reasons “why” and for someone to tell you that it’s a good thing to hang in there with this woman. I’m certainly not going to tell you that nor would anyone who cares about you, Anthony.

                      Dr T

                    • Anthony
                      May 23, 2009 at 1:00 pm

                      Dr T.

                      I really do appreciate your comments and honesty! I just thought with my love and support I could help her overcome the disorder. She has asked this of me. She needed some motivation. (This is another reason why I feel guilty).

                      Me personally, I think she is a weak and a shallow individual because when the going get’s tough… she runs or looks for excuses to. I kinda look at it like she’s always running from the truth or herself. It’s kind of cowardly. I thought with the help of the therapists after she “admitted” having the disorder he could start to show her the way she behaves, and ultimately how it affects me. If someone had cancer, do you leave them when they need you the most? In this case I hold on to, well… she has to get it right one day and all my efforts and love goes down the tubes. Also meaning that maybe she will be fine for someone else. (I know this is not here and now thinking, but it’s hard for me because I love her).

                      The thing that baffles me the most… is that instead of staying by herself to work on herself after we break-up, she usually get’s involved with someone else and causes more damage. However, I say to myself what do you want her to do…were not together anymore? She needs to move on too?

                      Here is some big questions for you. Did you ever treat a disorder like this and did the person recover/heal? If so, was the person still in a relationship or were they by themselves? What does it actually take? I would like to know so I can really let this go, move forward, and not hold on to any-more hope.

                      Thank you so much for your time and advice. I really do appreciate it!

                      Anthony

                    • shrink4men
                      May 23, 2009 at 4:58 pm

                      Hi Anthony,

                      Emotional support can only help a person deal with these issues if they are 110% committed to doing the work and truly accept that they have a problem. Even though your ex once admitted to having a problem, she doesn’t appear to have been at all serious about doing the work necessary to change her behavior. It’s like an alcoholic who tries to give up drinking to keep her husband from divorcing her. Unless a person wants the help for him or herself, it’s not going to work.

                      Furthermore, you can’t “cure” BPD or NPD. The best you can hope for is that they gain some awareness and learn to control some of their behaviors. If you want to see an example of this on my site read the comment thread on 15 Warning Signs She’s a Psycho Chick between Keira, Matt and Bryce.

                      After you and she break up, she starts seeing other guys away to:
                      1) Continue to receive attention—these women have to have attention, good attention or bad attention, it doesn’t matter.
                      2) Piss you off and hurt you.
                      3) Avoid having to look at herself and deal with her problems.

                      Yes, I’ve worked with women who have these issues, men who have these issues and men who are involved with women who have these issues. Some of the women were able to acknowledge that their behaviors were problematic, but continued to blame everyone else for their problems. They could not accept responsibility for their behaviors. Some these women were still in relationships; some were in-between relationships. The bottom line is that most of them tried to use therapy as a way to validate how it was everyone else’s fault or they dropped out of treatment when they couldn’t tolerate the boundaries I put in place, which is why I chose to stop working with them.

                      Anthony, I don’t have anything else to tell you. There are no more, “but what if’s?”

                      Best,
                      Dr T

                    • Anthony
                      May 25, 2009 at 11:56 pm

                      Dr T.

                      Thank you for giving me you expert opinion. It just sucks that I put myself in this pain. I feel weak. I feel like whatever she throws at me shouldn’t matter. I should be confident and secure enough with myself not to feed into her verbal attacks. (I feel that maybe a stronger man would be able to deal with her, which makes me feel worse). I get so depressed.

                      I’m also mad and annoyed that she shows up at the places that she know”s where I would go. Meaning a health club that has many things for me and my daughter to do. I joined “first” several months ago and asked her nicely not to join because I was unsure of where our relationship would go. (Obviously, this did not happen). This weekend I wanted to take my daughter there to go swimming, which to no surprise she was there. So, I didn’t go because I didn’t want to deal with her or have my daughter see her children and get upset. It’s like she’s in my face, but then gives me the cold shoulder and wants nothing to do with me? Are my feelings accurate? I feel like I have to give up going to the health club because she’s there. I feel like it’s almost like a preemptive strike that she joined. (Maybe I’m over reacting and she goes there just because she wants to go there with her daughter’s and it has nothing to do with me).

                      I just feel like my space is invaded and now my little girl has to suffer because of me! To me, the way I was raised…she has no class. She also knows that I’m going back to school and she pulls this crap. Maybe she’s telling me in a nice way that she would distract me, so she”ll leave me alone. My friends and family tell me no! She dosent’ want me to succeed. Who knows…

                      Would love to hear some of your reactions on these topics.

                      As always, thank you for your time!

                      Anthony

  11. Anthony
    April 23, 2009 at 1:01 am

    Dr. T

    I’m needing some advice about my girlfriend who has been diagnosed with BPD/NPD. I have been on and off with her for over 4-yrs. She has had boyfriends in between but says she loves me and can’t get over me. I have agreed to take her back another time because she has admitted that she has BPD/NPD, so I thought there might be some hope. (She has denied it until now).This is now the fourth therapists that she’s seen, but say’s this one is the “right” one! I required that she provide me with passwords which she has taken back when we have a argument. I buy her books to read, but always has an excuse that she is too busy with work and her children to read them. (Funny, she has time to get her nails done and go shopping though) I finally put my foot down and told her that I do not feel like she is taken her treatment seriously, and until she does I will not be in her life. With that being said, she has changed her passwords again, attacked me verbally with abuse and said that I’m a bum and not worthy of her! She said I know longer want to be with you and she is “so” done with me because I’m controlling and abusive. I basically think she’s just telling me what I want to hear like always, then continue with her same ways. My big question to you is… how do I know she is serious about changing her behavior? My friends, family and her “ex-husband” say you’re wasting your time! She is who she is and run for good! She’s 37yrs old and the wiring has been made. I would appreciate your comments and advice. The funny thing is that I do know she is in a lot of pain and do love her. However, sometimes I believe that she is incapable of loving me or anyone for that matter. My biggest fear is that maybe I’ll give up on her and she will be great/normal for someone else. Everybody tells me that I’m being stupid! The doll is broke and beyond repair. It’s heartbreaking for me!

    Thank you,

    Anthony

    • shrink4men
      April 23, 2009 at 4:05 am

      Hi Anthony,

      I’m sorry to read that you continue to go through such a difficult and painful time with this woman. Sorry, but I don’t know what you mean when you write that she has given you “passwords” and taken them back. What does it mean?

      The answer to your question, “How do [you] know she is serious about changing her behavior?” is WHEN SHE ACTUALLY CHANGES HER BEHAVIOR AND MAINTAINS GOOD BEHAVIOR INTO THE FUTURE—not just until she’s lured you back for another round of her abuse. I think your friends, family, and this woman’s ex-husband have given you great advice about ending the relationship for good.

      She is not going to be “great and normal” for someone else. She isn’t capable of it. You’re not being stupid. It’s hard to let go of someone we love, even when they treat us like crap. Actually, it’s hard to let go of our hopes, dreams and wishful thinking version of the abusive men or woman.

      My question to you is what are you getting out of this relationship and why don’t you think you deserve better? Why is it your job to save this woman and put up with her crap? How would you react to another person—friend, family member or stranger—if they treated you the way this woman treats you?

      Kind Regards,
      Dr T

      • Anthony
        April 23, 2009 at 3:48 pm

        Dr T.

        Sorry for not being too clear on what I’m trying to say. What I mean by passwords is… email, phone access and any other private things that I ask for. She only does this when I tell her this is what I need for me to regain trust in her or resume in the relationship. She complies for a little while, but when she feels me pulling away or I call her out on her past/present behavior/argument arises… she changes them and tells me, “you’re being controlling; you don’t need them, you need to trust me! (Why does she keep changing the passwords)? I will not be mentally beat up by you for the past. Whatever I did is in the past and I’m sorry… I didn’t mean it!. Get over it”. Then, “it’s I don’t trust you”! Then she goes into rages and tells me that you’re not a man, you’re a bum! You’re not worthy of me! Nice… because right now I’m out of work. She even criticizes me about my education because I do not have a college degree. (Funny, because she always wants me to marry her and we were even engaged at one time). I even came up with a working/realtionship agreement that she “signed”, also admitting her diagnosis. (I thought that was really big because she left herself vulnerable legally) She even went on Lexapro, again. I believe she is doing the best she can with the tools that she has. Is it really her fault that she had a horrific childhood and/or no loving parents? I’m torn because love is acceptance isn’t it? You take the good with the bad. Although, she doesn’t accept my bad qualities or feelings. (But not all the time). Confusing, because she can be so loving, but I’ve seen it disappear with every act of betrayal and hate she put’s me through. Sometimes, I can’t take it and fire back at her to defend myself or protect my feelings. Then I feel crappy, and she makes it known!

        What am I getting out of this relationship? Sex. I asked her why she comes back to me? She say’s that she loves me and want’s to build a life with me and I can’t let me go. She said, “nobody can fill your shoes”. Funny, because the other day she emailed me and told me that the only reason why she comes back to me is because of the physically attraction she “had” for me, and she doesn’t know any better. Also, you bring nothing to the table. Nice. (This coming “after” I told her that I will not continue with her unless she does the hard work that is needed). Amazingly with sex, she sleeps with almost anybody and I’ve seen what some of these men look like. I’m not trying to be shallow, but I’m a very handsome man and these men look nothing like me. She also justifies her promiscuous behavior with, “you’ve slept with other people when we were not together… so what’s the big deal”? But other times she tells me that she is ashamed of it.

        Sometimes I feel guilty because maybe she has to go at her own pace in therapy and overcoming the disorder. Maybe I’m pushing her too hard. Maybe, I’m pushing her away? It’s just that I have given her so many chances and she promises me each and every time that things will be different. I’ve read that on occasions people can overcome these disorders, but they have to work “extremely” hard at it. They say that DBT works. However, I feel that she’s more narcissistic. She holds a job, functions very well at work and is a top producer.

        I do think I deserve better, but maybe I don’t deserve or can’t get better. Financially I’ve been a mess. I’m also a single father who fought for my daughter and has 50/50 custody. Sometimes I feel what woman would want me with my baggage. Sometimes I feel like if I had made more money, she would be ok with me.

        Regarding saving her? Sometimes I feel like she will die alone and that is sad. Maybe even kill herself even though she claims to like herself and is a happy women. I also see through her “masks” and know it’s related to her pain of her childhood. Hey, I’m an Aquarius. My zodiac sign fits me.

        Regarding if anyone else treats me this way? I would tell them to scratch and not feel bad about it. It does take me time though. I think I’m a cheap forgiver. I have a big heart and I’m a very compassionate person.

        Any of your advice or comments are greatly appreciated.

        God bless you! I think you’re a wonderful person to start website like this.

        Sincerely,

        Anthony

        • shrink4men
          April 23, 2009 at 5:22 pm

          Hi Anthony,

          You’re welcome. Thank you for sharing your painful relationship with me and other readers. I really believe it’s important for men to know they’re not alone and that they have choices to make when it comes to relationships with crazy, emotionally abusive women.

          I have another question for you: Why would you want to be in a relationship who has broken your trust so badly that you feel the need to monitor her email, phone calls, text messages, etc? Why does she keep changing the passwords? She either has something she’s trying to hide and/or she just want to torture you.

          From your description, she has a pattern of treating you poorly, then she blames you for her bad behavior when you call her on it and criticizes you all the more. It’s healthy to forgive past hurts when someone is truly sorry for what they did. However, when she continues to hurt you, repeating the same nasty behaviors, then “sorry” just doesn’t cut it. It’s an empty, meaningless word to her. When you’re really sorry, you do everything in your power not to hurt that person again. These women are like 5-year-olds who use “sorry” as a “Get Out of Jail Free Card.” Enough already.

          All of her insults, put downs, and rages aren’t about you; they’re about her. She’s projecting her garbage onto you. She would do that to any man she was in a relationship with. In fact, I’d be willing to wager that these other men “who can’t fill your shoes” are the ones who actually kicked her can to the curb. My hunch is they wouldn’t take her crap and ended things—not the other way around. She comes back to you because you take her back and, ultimately, tolerate her nonsense.

          No, it’s not her fault for whatever happened to her during her childhood, but she’s an adult now and she most definitely is responsible for her behavior as an adult. Lots of people had painful childhoods, but they don’t grow up to abuse and torture others. You don’t get a free pass to walk all over people as a grown-up just because you had a shitty childhood. This is another lame excuse these women like to use. Basically, it’s the equivalent of another 5-year old tactic, “but it’s not my fault!”

          I once dated a man with serious issues for a few months. It took me a little bit to figure out what was going on. He had been in therapy for 9 years prior to our brief dating spell. I asked him what he was like 9 years earlier, B.T. (Before Therapy). He responded, “You can’t rush these things. It’s like wearing a rock down with a feather.”

          I’m a Psychologist, not a Geologist or Earth Scientist, but I’m pretty sure it would take THOUSANDS of years to wear a rock down with a feather. Life is too short to wait for someone else to behave and treat you like a decent human being. Maybe she is going “at her own pace,” but she’s actively abusing you. In my opinion, her pace isn’t fast enough. Why should you put your life on hold because she has issues, which, by the way, she doesn’t appear to be very serious about resolving? If she were, she’d have done so already.

          You do deserve better. I don’t care how good the sex is, no orgasm is worth the emotional pain she’s causing you. There are plenty of divorced, single dads out there. That’s not very much baggage. The real baggage is having an emotionally abusive woman you continue let intrude upon your life. It’ll be really difficult to meet and build a strong, healthy relationship with another woman if you continue to let this abusive predator yank your chain whenever she feels like it. If you made more money this woman would not treat you any better, she’d just use you for money in addition to being her personal whipping post and port in the storm when another man rejects her.

          My advice is to get out and stay out. Don’t accept her calls. Don’t reply to her emails. If you cut off all contact, she’ll find a new guy to torture. These women can’t go without attention—good or bad attention, it doesn’t matter which—for very long. Then you need to figure out what attracted you to this woman in the first place, patch up your self-esteem and self-confidence and start making different choices.

          Anthony, yes, love is acceptance, but abuse from someone who “loves” you is never acceptable. It’s completely unacceptable. Period. Start showing yourself the compassion you deserve and stop worrying about this woman.

          Kind Regards,
          Dr T

          • Anthony
            April 23, 2009 at 6:43 pm

            Dr T.

            You’re a sweetheart and thank you for your time and support!

            So, basically she only enters into therapy again to control or manipulate me back into the relationship? I do believe she is not honest with the therapist because she won’t sign a waiver of confidentiality. In the beginning of getting back with her, she said she would have not a problem doing this. Now it’s inappropriate and it’s none of my business.

            She is also pissed that I went to my priest at our town church years ago and told him of her diagnosis and the problems I have been having with her. She said, it’s my priest! She also said you didn’t ask for my permission. I believe I can talk about anyone I want in my life and as long as it’s true. Besides, “if the shoe fits, then wear it”. Also, I have a daughter and I’m worried that she might start trouble with me and the mother of my child. Being that I have a “signed” agreement/document that she has admitted that she has BPD/NPD will this hold any water legally and protect me? She has also called the police on me. Also, is what I’m doing right now legal?

            Again, than you for your time and generosity.

            Anthony

  12. alexander
    April 13, 2009 at 4:42 am

    Thank you for response Dr. t.
    It has been almost 4 weeks i am living in hotel. NOthing has changed, still haven’t seen my baby, still no ecess to the house , the only thing that happend i fired my attorney , because after I put everything together my wife and my attorney have been talking on many different occations, From the begging when i brought pictures of her with other men, my lawyer drulled out loud , outlining how nice of ass and tits she’s got. After she called me from blocked number again she told me she has talked to him for an hour night before. I have realized , I am in more crap now then even before after she said she wants me to sell my business, house and split with her. Saddest things of all I have no contact with baby or her or any of her family. SO i feel it is not just her that died, but her whole family, she did tell me what she was planning i was the only one that knew about, but her family knew it all along. Do you really think me getting some withnesses to bring to court might help me with custody, she wants sole custody of child and she will move back to seattle from here 2400 miles away once divorse is final. I feel a little bit better as weeks pass on, i dont cry as much anymore and I can focuse a little bit more on eating and working. I never thought i would get so atached to person and when I think why I dont know. Anymore sugestions anybody might have ?
    I dont know how to fix financial situation. I can’t afford everything now, she is stilll living the style , yet i am in hotel. My business wend downhill dramatically because of all stress and no acess to house. Thanks everyone.

    • shrink4men
      April 13, 2009 at 2:31 pm

      Hi Alexander,

      It was highly inappropriate for your attorney to have contact with your wife. I’d report him to the local Bar Association. I’d look for another attorney who has experience with “difficult” women. Also, if you can find an attorney that know the terms “borderline” or “narcissistic” even better.

      You may have to sell your house (is her name on the deed?—if not maybe you could have the police remove her), but I don’t think you’re under any obligation to sell your business. It’s essential that you find a good lawyer who can help you protect your rights—particularly around custody. I don’t know if there’s anything you can do to stop her from moving 2400 miles away, short of suing for full custody. Yes, absolutely start gathering character witnesses to bring to court. If she’s told her family lies about you, heaven knows who else she’s tried to turn against you.

      When a relationship ends, even a relationship with an abusive, crazy woman, it’s natural to go through a mourning period. You grieve the loss of hopes and dreams you had about the relationship, the loss of having a happy family, the the loss of the image of that woman that only existed in your head.

      I encourage you to consult with attorneys and find a good one. You need a pitbull. You won’t be able to mediate or reach a compromise with this woman. I also encourage you to check out fathers’ rights groups in your state and see what information they can give you.

      Please take care of yourself,
      Dr T

  13. Bob
    March 31, 2009 at 2:05 am

    6 weeks have passed since I last saw her and got my ribs kicked in from a couple of her men friends. Your stories of these woman are my story. It’s now all about me. There’s no more mystery about Borderline or Naccisistic Personality Disorders. My nut case is the extememe example. My attraction to and repetative re-connections are my problem. This problem lives within me and I am looking very deeply at the reasons I have subjected myself to them. Sadly, sex has been the major hook. My mother treated me in a similar manner. I have given up my desire for sex with her because it’s part of the package. I chose not to accept the package. It’s not worth it. I read and pray every day about this subject and re-affirm my choice many times a day. Best to you all.

    • shrink4men
      March 31, 2009 at 12:23 pm

      What you’re going through is a rough road, Bob, but it’ll be worth it in the end. Understanding why you’re attracted to these women is a huge first step. Its great that you’re focusing on you. These women are a dime a dozen. You can’t make them change, but you can change what you want in a relationship, what you believe you deserve and how you want your life to be.

      I’m sorry you experienced physical violence because of that woman, but maybe it was the wake-up call you needed. I’ll keep you in my thoughts.

      Best,
      Dr T

      • mike
        January 20, 2013 at 9:29 pm

        I have girlfriend. That start fight with me any time she get
        Dont know what to do anymore
        Help her with the clean. I dont cook and she cook super sometime ask her can help her with anything and she tell me no. Then nexts there days she get mad at me for nothing. Help here out
        by give her money. Just for her tell me that dont care anymore. Some time talk to my friends and then tell me get out there. Then can see something really bad go to happen to me. She sometime tell me that she go to take gun and shoot me in head. I know she will never shoot me. Should i tell someone like my family or my friend

  14. alexander
    March 29, 2009 at 8:13 pm

    I am in process of a divorce now,the way relationship went i never could figure out all that happened and for what reason. After I read a definition of a narcissist, it him me. There was never a fight or argument that wasn’t hung on my shoulders. After a while I started appologizing for everything just not to get to mean fights.

    I can say I had night i had to pray to God to forgive my sins, in case she stabs me or hits me with a statue over a head.I never understood men that are physycall to women period, but when a women uses anything in a house to throw at you , hit you with or damage property that always freaked me out. I never knew how to respond. Running to rooms or bathrooms and locking up was not a solution , because she will follow and brake the door in. Leaving house was not solution ither , because she’s call all ralatives make modify scenario of what happend and make you bad guy. Afterward next day she would go out till 6 am just to tell you she is getting back at you for leaving the night before.

    I am so loss for words I feel like my rational part of brain doesnt think straight anymore.We were together for 3.5 years.In that time she must of tryed to leave or pack maybe 20 times. I never knew true reasons, but everything she talked bad about me was just in a sum, she wanted me to do 95% of the things she accused, but never had a shred of evidence. So any time any situations she would talk over about it and over. I offered her my arm , only if should would just stop.

    BUt i dont think i hear more profanity and screaming and hate from all the people in my life combined as I have in 3.5 years.I come from christian family where i never saw this kind of behavior. For the longest time I wouldn’t understand how she would start fights over nothing and make them big. And again I was reminded the fight was started because of me. I didnt realize that people can start fights , just to leave a house because they have date they scheduled of a website.She was a stay home mom the whole time. But how she explained to me how hard it is to raise a baby and I dont help with anything.

    After i came home from 6-7pm i did most of the chores, helped with baby( food, diapers, play),but no matter how much more i tried to help she always told everyone in her and my family that i dont do anything.I have a small landscaping company 1-2 employees, so besides working 7-7 in the field, doing paperwork, invoicing, taxes, bids, designs I would only have a window of 3-5 hours at home and I never could understand how much more help I can squeeze in to that time. After i installed webwatcherdata. software on the computer to see what she is really doing all day, I found a can of worms I wished i didn’t find.

    Besides having 5 different meet people accounts 9 different emails used daily, all questions I had about men i caught her with in past, i found their dialogs , emails, pictures and what has been going on. I was told by her that she was a perfect wife and she wouldn’t even look men in eyes because she was shy , but in reality she was dating, sleeping , chatting , forwarding naked pictures to other men for exactly 2 years.

    When I presented all the info she finally admitted to what she has been doing and why. Well As I tried to pass through that and she said she would not delete history, not put password on phone, she started opening other accounts and hiding things even more.
    One day I went and filed for divorce, she beat me by having me served with restraining order.

    What is odd everything that is in restraining order is what she has done to me. Anyways it has been 10 days. i am living in the hotel and waiting a court date. I operate my business out of home so , no access to baby, clothes, tools or anything else. In the beginning she wanted a clean divorce with no attorneys, so she said.

    after she got an attorney and restraining order she wants 50-50. Funny thing she moved in with me with 3 bags of close and 7000 $ credit card debt , no car , no cash. Now She is living my house I build , driving a bmw , i am still paying all bills in fear of ruining my credit, and she wants alimony, childsupport, and comply with ex- parte. I am about to lose my mind.

    I live second by second now and one thing that is in my mind WHY WHy WHy. I understand she wants a lifestyle she has , but with out me in it. OK,but why get so low and mean especially after i found out about her deceit, traps and everything she tried to accuse me of, was what she was doing the whole time. My 2 and half year old is with her I haven’t seen both of them for going on two weeks. I am lost, emotionally, physically and I just dont see any light at the end of the tunnel.

    • shrink4men
      March 30, 2009 at 2:54 pm

      Hi Alexander,

      Wow. It sounds like your ex is really doing a number on you. Most of the behavior and low, dirty tricks you describe are taken right out of the Woman’s Narcissistic Personality playbook. She treats you like crap, takes your money, pimps you out to work for her, deceives you and then portrays you as the bad guy, while denying you access to your child and bleeding you for cash.

      This is classic, textbook abusive behavior. The most ironic thing is that these women believe they’re special and unique (hence the entitlement), yet they’re carbon copies of one another. There’s nothing at all special about them. They’re sorry excuses for human beings who expect others to be happy to serve them as they beat them into the ground.

      My advice is get a good attorney. Get a therapist who knows about parental alienation and abuse. Have your attorney stipulate how she spends the child support money. For example, you can have the court stipulate that a sizable percentage of it goes into a college trust that neither of you can touch. Have your attorney subpoena her for a competency to work evaluation. Protect yourself and your child as best you can. Don’t let her push you into anger, so that she can call the cops. Let your attorney handle her. Line up character witnesses for yourself for family court. Don’t trust anything your ex says about being fair and doing what’s best for you both. Women like your ex only do what’s good for them, while they take a perverse pleasure in mowing everyone else down.

      Kind Regards,
      Dr T

  15. alexander
    March 29, 2009 at 7:45 pm

    hi every one.

  16. Andrew
    March 29, 2009 at 5:52 pm

    Bob, while reading your first comment, I felt your pain and I teared. I hate this shit, I sincerely do. I can’t kick the habit of how easily she can just come back into my life, but after reading some of Dr T and your stuff, I am really going to try harder this time. I don’t want to be the victim, the “dildo”… the way you described yourself like that is a big warning label for the path I have been on. And she can just drop me in five seconds. Sex seems like so much intimacy and love, but I guess it was only for her to feel better.

    I have been physically abusive to her a couple of times, and this is a reminder to me to re-gain control and walk away FOREVER (not just from her, but from these type of relationships). I used to really look down on men who hit their women. I do not advocate violence, but I have been violent. Looking back at it, I was probably in the most control when I hit my girlfriend. Isn’t that sad? Worst part, however, is not her getting physically hit but the fact that I felt guilty for it and gave her more justification over me. By hitting her, I gave her the “right” to feel like the victim, when in actuality, I am the victim.

    Well, lets just use this and say I am a great person because now I can justify not being with her: I do not want to do something I will truly regret.

    • shrink4men
      March 30, 2009 at 3:02 pm

      Hi Andrew,

      I wish you the best in breaking this destructive relationship pattern. Just remember, these women never change. They don’t get better, they just become more adept at emotional abuse as they get older. More sophisticated in how they hurt you, so that you blame and devalue yourself.

      Understand what attracts you to this kind of woman. Face it. Work through it. And then let it go. Life is too short to be the half-dead mouse to their cat paw. These women project their chaos onto you and can push you into violence. For that reason alone, you have to break all contact. There is no excuse for physical violence—no matter how cruel or twisted they treat you. I encourage you to find a therapist you can talk to about this. Many therapists will work on a sliding scale—especially in this economy. If you’re in school, many universities offer free counseling services.

      Do your homework when finding a therapist. There are a lot of female therapists who are extremely biased and will blame and shame you. Find a therapist who acknowledges that BPDs and NPDs emotionally abuse their loved ones and who will acknowledge that YOU have been the primary target of abuse.

      Bryce, if you happen to catch this comment thread, do you have any words to offer Andrew?

      Kind Regards,
      Dr T

  17. Bob
    February 23, 2009 at 3:08 am

    Yes, you are right on target. I’ve confused her off and on needy obsession for me to be love for me because it feels like it to me. And yes, somehow this feeling I get from her neediness and obsession, consumated by sex feeling like love, gives me a sense of value and worth. When she, soon after begins the horrible abuse of unbelievable contempt and rejection I feel valueless and worthless. I vow never to return but the temptation each time she re-appears is so great to get the “quick fix” to my damaged self I go for it thinking I can get what I need and get out. I frequently think I’m in love at these new honeymoons. The rejection or threat to be replaced by another man causes me to feel more love rather than the normal response that would be to exit. It also causes my behavour to get out of control and I begin to behave in ways that are crazy which justifies her blaming me for being crazy. I do get crazy. The place where we meet in bliss together is short lived and soon deteriorates into much abuse, abandonment, rejection and worse. I keep thinking she is done and it’s over. I know that I have to somehow come to terms with my own issues and attraction to this very similar tratment as I got from my own mother and to a lesser degree my wife of 23 years and my first girlfriend at 18. The theme is always they are unhappy and angry at me because it’s my fault but don’t go too far away Bob, I need you. There is always a replacement for me nearby. It sucks. I have tried to find my solution for five years to find within myself or through spirituality that thing I seek in this BPD/NP woman. Thank you again for your posts

  18. Bob
    February 20, 2009 at 11:05 am

    Many times I thought I was done after weeks or months had passed. I would never initiate after a major blow-out and was certain things were so ugly that I would never hear from here again. I’ve always left it up to her to stay stopped but didn’t know it until the call came and I responded each time. She’s been shopping for my replacement since I met her. She found them a couple times but they didn’t last and she shows up to me again immediately. She blames me for that. I have amnesia when the poor needy woman that tells me again for the thousanth time “it’s all about you Bob, it always has been, I don’t want anyone touching me but you” The hate runs concurrent with her neediness and sexual attraction for me. She hates and punishes me for it. I think THAT is what I can’t let go of, the feeling of power I get when the horribly abusive woman NEEDS ME again and it’s always about sex. She always makes me pay for it. Her BP traits, of which she exhibits ALL of to the extreme have evolved more in NP traits at least as I experience them. She chased me for the first three years even as she ran but since a couple of short term boyfriends back to back I find myself being the needy one. For over a year now I have been used like a dildo when she has the urge and when she’s done she just wants to put it in the drawer until the next time and not be bothered in between. It’s been excrutiatingly painful for me.
    I have left the light burning and she knows it, she can smell it. There are other parts to it but I know it’s the sex I have to be able to say no to. I’m ashamed to even admit that.
    Much of this I know is about my issues and not BPD/NP and is probably topic for another forum. Thank you for your input and this new site.

    • shrink4men
      February 23, 2009 at 1:06 am

      Hi Bob,

      While I don’t know you or this woman, I’m pretty sure that if you leave it up to her to stop the relationship it’s not going to stop. You’re going to have to be the one that stops this relationship—that’s if you actually want to stop it.

      I could be completely off base, again, I don’t know the details, but I wonder if there’s a part of you that secretly hopes you can win this woman over. What would it mean if you could make her love you the way you want to be loved? And what would it mean about you if you can’t make her love you?

      Sometimes, when people stay in hurtful, abusive, non-reciprocal relationships because it brings up a lot of bad feelings and beliefs left over from childhood. Such as, “If I can’t get this woman to love me/be nice to me, it means there’s something wrong with me, that I’m ‘bad’ or unlovable or not good enough.” Many people aren’t aware that this is what’s going on underneath the surface. They just feel a compulsion to persist in their toxic relationship no matter the cost to themselves.

      I wish you the best, Bob. You seem to be in a great deal of pain. I hope you find the way out and move onto a healthier and happier relationship.

      Best,
      Dr T

  19. Bryce
    February 20, 2009 at 5:32 am

    “An abuser will never leave you alone or end the relationship on her own accord. You have to do it. She treats you this bad because you let her do it by answering her calls. I think the only way to find your “off” switch is to understand why you’re drawn to this woman, face it, feel the feelings, challenge your beliefs about relationships that led you to this woman and go cold turkey. As long as you leave a light on the proverbially front porch, this woman is going to keep coming around because you let her.”

    This is the answer. I know, it is not the one that you seek. But the only one that will win you back your life, and your soul.

    Good luck on your journey.

    Bryce

  20. Bob
    February 19, 2009 at 6:56 pm

    I have struggled for unknown reasons with acceptance of your simple answer to “why” she treats me this way. For 5 -1/2 years I have been in a state of nearly constant unofficial relationship that consists mostly of just sex with certain rituals and much abuse always on her terms in her time. My inabilty to not respond each time she calls which has mostly been on a weekly basis with sometimes several weeks or even months in between has me and those around me baffled. She treats me with extreme hate, contempt rejection and betrayal until she wants sex and then proclaims to be deeply in love with me.
    5 -1/2 years of this. She has many men hanging around that would love to have my position but it is killing me. With every bit of knowledge I’ve aquired about BPD and addiction I have not been able to resist the call when it inevitably comes again. It has been torture each time after a brief moment of sexual bliss where I feel my lost power restored. What’s in it for her? Why is she addicted to me if she hates me? I’ve read and understand as much about BPD and NPD as anyone. I have been unable to extricate myself. The abuse I endure is unbelievable. In recent times I’ve begun to give abuse back to her after being provoked by purposeful jealousy. It has gotten very ugly and dangerous. The many resolves I’ve made as sincerly as I can imagine melt away with any contact with her. She claims to be equally motivated to be finished with me and claims to suffer horribly from this as well. I beleive she has but don’t understand why. How can a woman be obsessively attached to a man sexually and treat this same man with so much hate at the same time? What is the solution for me? Where is the “off” switch in me?

    Your blogs are uniquely refreshing. I look forward to more. Thank you.

    • shrink4men
      February 19, 2009 at 7:45 pm

      Hi Bob,

      I am so very sorry to read about the difficult relationship you’re struggling with. Unfortunately, the simplest explanations are often the hardest to accept.

      From what you described, it appears as if you’re enmeshed in an extremely co-dependent relationship with this abusive woman, as I’m sure you know.

      What’s in it for her? Abuse is about control. By treating you with contempt, keeping you at her beck and call, and periodically yanking your chain, she is controlling you. She also seems to have you wallowing in self-recrimination and shame. It sounds so painful.

      I don’t know what the solution is for you. You’ve described your relationship with this woman as an addiction. Maybe you should treat it as such. Appoint a friend to act as a “sponsor” when you’re tempted to contact her. Change your phone number and email. Distract yourself. Surround yourself with people who care about you. Tell yourself you deserve better until you believe it.

      An abuser will never leave you alone or end the relationship on her own accord. You have to do it. She treats you this bad because you let her do it by answering her calls. I think the only way to find your “off” switch is to understand why you’re drawn to this woman, face it, feel the feelings, challenge your beliefs about relationships that led you to this woman and go cold turkey. As long as you leave a light on the proverbially front porch, this woman is going to keep coming around because you let her.

      Meanwhile, I hope for your sake, you don’t reciprocate her abuse. Don’t sink to her level. It’s what she wants. She no doubt gets off on it. There are women who aren’t abusers who will treat you with warmth and kindness. Creatures like the one you describe are aberrations. They’re missing the empathy chip. I sincerely wish you the best in breaking the cycle of this abusive relationship for your sake, not hers.

      Kind Regards,
      Dr T

Comment pages
  1. December 17, 2010 at 6:45 pm
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