THIS FORUM IS INTENDED TO BE:
A place of mutual support.
A place of safety where members can receive help, and return help.
A place of healing, of compassion and mutual respect.
A place where sometimes tough love is required, and given accordingly. Please see the article below for a definition of "Tough love" - and why it is sometimes necessary. The forum recognises the deep pain and confusion that comes about from being in a relationship with a disordered abuser. Sometimes tough situations require tough solutions in order to promote healing.
Tough Love with Dr. Garry
Tough love is for tough problems, and the people who have them. Tough love means taking a strong, direct approach with the person with tough problems. Those problems affect not only the person with the problem, but the people around them and in their lives. Tough love means deciding to not stay stuck in the problem, or go along with it anymore. It means saying to the person making the bad choices, "This has to stop, I am no longer going to participate in choices that deepen this problem, I am committing to acting on a solution. I am no going to support your bad choices any longer, especially by going along with them, or feeling trapped and victimized by them." It is exactly like pulling on the brakes when a car has gone out of control.
It is important to remember that there is a difference between a person and their behavior. We can love a person, but hate the choices they are making and the behavior that comes from it.
Tough problems and the people who have them are best characterized by:
a. a problem lasting longer than six months.
b. a person stuck in the problem and resists the solutions Often they "defend" the problem, or explain why it can't change, or why they can't take the indicated action to make things better.
c. a person denies the truth and/or depth of their problem behavior, and the consequences that result from their choices that affect them and the others around them.
d. they minimize the impact of their actions, or the size of their problem. They keep secrets, and protect them.
e. they deny their own free will in relation to the problem. "It's not their fault".
f. will not listen to the reason of others, and resist treatment attempts
A place to confirm that you have made the right decision to leave an abuser.
A place to affirm your instincts as to whether you are dealing with a disordered person/s.
A place that promotes healthy feelings and actions.
A place to learn about what happened to you, and what to do about it.
A place of reciprocity, of give and take. To hear others, and to be heard. It is often the case when we are enduring or just out of an abusive relationship that we post alot, and are unable to support others initially. But it is expected that if members and moderators give their valuable time to assist someone, that they attempt to listen and acknowledge the support they are given. It is entirely their perogative whether they take our advice or not - but we are not here to enable anyone to stay in an abusive relationship that is destructive to them and others.
A comprehensive resource that will enable you to learn more about disorders, abuse tactics, self-awareness, and healing techniques.
THIS FORUM IS NOT INTENDED TO BE:
This is NOT place to enable you to stay within an abusive relationship. We will not provide hints and tips on how to continue to live with a psychopath or narcissist. If you come to the forums seeking idea's on how to stay with your P or N, then you may expect to be challenged on this - because at the end of the day, you are playing with a person with no conscience and no empathy and you are going to prolong your agony and erode your mental health.
This is NOT a place for members to learn how to beat the abuser at their own game, or learn how to seek revenge on an abuser.
This is NOT a place to enable members in any self-destructive behavior.
This is NOT a place where members can vent endlessly about their abuser, seek attention only for their problem, whilst continually demonstrating no wish to move on towards a more healthy future, and giving no support and assistance to others. There are many members here that do wish to move on, and that need genuine assistance, and those that demonstrate the sincere wish to heal will be given priority. Managers and members here give their time generously, for free - so please do not abuse their support.
This is NOT a place where religious or political views are discussed. This is a deliberately secular, apolitical board for the healing of those victimized by narcissists and psychopaths that openly welcomes all faiths and all backgrounds in one common goal: healing. Please respect the legitimate need many of our members have for a safe, non-political, non-religious place free of the emotional charge and volatility these particular subjects always seem to bring. If you are a person of strong political or religious conviction yourself, then respect that the absence of religious/political discussion here allows you to nurture your own beliefs in peace as well.
This board is not a substitute for professional therapy.
The managers of this board do not underestimate the devastating emotional and sometimes physical effects of relationships with psychopaths and narcissists, and the sometimes long-lasting torment that ensues. We do however have a responsibility to our membership as a whole, and to each individual to do everything we can to enable people to remove themselves from an abusive situation where-ever possible.
Link to our No Contact (NC) Contract: http://thepsychopath.freeforums.org/the-no-contact-contract-t11124.html
We cannot with conscience enable people who want to stay with their abusers, but who just want them to change. There is no known cure for psychopathy and narcissism. It is a permanent disorder. We cannot change their behavior - we can only change ours.
If after a time here, you feel that your situation is not serious enough to warrant leaving your abusive partner/situation, or you believe your partner is not narcissistic or psychopathic, then we will respect your choices, wish you well and you may be asked to leave. Staying in abuse is not advocated here. It is disruptive to healing, counterproductive to our purpose and often very triggering for those who do wish to move on and heal from abuse.
Alternatively a person's problems may be deemed beyond the scope of this board, and require professional therapy to assist and support them.
Staying in abusive situations is not healthy, sometimes some situations are so abusive that a person may not be sure that they are being abused. We recognize understanding, healing, and moving forward takes time. We are here to help everyone, but we also recognize that moving on from these emotionally draining relationships takes more than support and empathy from others, it also takes motivation from within ourselves.
For your further information we do not advocate:
- Cyber-stalking the N/P
- Continued contact with the N/P when there are no children involved
- Manipulating others to participate in the drama with the N/P
- Revenge on the N/P
- Advocating other members to contact their N/P
- Continued contact with the OW or OM
A word regarding contacting OW/OM:
"if you do decide that you conscience will NOT let you not at least warn the new OW, be prepared. Our experience is :
- they will not 'receive' the info in the manner it was intended; they will not react to it they way you think, want or expect them to.
- they've already been brainwashed by the smear campaign/pity ploy against us launched by the N.
- if they are truly 'hooked' already, they are in denial
- they could very well have their own 'issues' / vulnerabilities / dysfunctional belief system that led them to the N in the first place.
- that you will come away from the experience feeling more battered, bruised and abused than before.
All of the above prolong drama, whilst understandable due to the "crazy-making" nature of relationships with N/Ps, are behaviors that ultimately prolong the agony of trying to heal from abuse. All relationships with N/Ps involve drama - this can be addictive to some people. If you want the pain to stop, it is the same for any addiction - and removing yourself from the drama by cutting it out of your life is the quickest way to heal.
Relationships with narcissists and psychopaths are seriously detrimental to peoples mental well-being. Our mission here is to help as many people as we can to overcome these effects and regain their lives.
Our board deals with Narcissistic Personality Disorder and Psychopathic Personality Disorder. Some people may come to the board with the "advantage" of knowing that their partner/relative is diagnosed - many others do not know for sure. If you come to the boards and tell us that you believe your partner/relative is either of the above, we will take your word for it and advise you accordingly.
We are not mental health professionals. All managers here are former victims of either psychopaths or narcissists. They have walked where you are walking now, and they are here to help you through. They are chosen for their years of personal insight on the subject, their compassion, people-skills, strength of character, empathy, and integrity. They are informed, passionate about helping members, and committed to promoting healing and positive change for all victims of psychopaths and narcissists.
We are also lucky enough to have many long term members who have moved on to heal, and yet who stay to help new members through the fog.
A word to the wise: "When another member here offers you advice, please consider the source: Experienced vs. Inexperienced re: dealing with NPD, or DISORDERED personality PATTERN".
IF YOU ARE WILLING TO INVEST IN YOURSELF - SO ARE WE.
We welcome you and wish you well on your healing journey.
"You are not the NP's existance. You cannot help them and you cannot heal them. Reach down inside of yourself to find the inner person that you know that you can be and leave them and extract them out of your lives. Then and only then will you know the true inner happiness that you can be. That's magic in a nutshell. Finding yourself". Windsong.
"This took me 7 yrs but I am extremely proud of this....Someone close to me told me the other day that they had seen the xp...mentioned he looked like cr*p and a few more things......Later that same night I had to really try to remember what they said to me....Who it was they had seen.....She and I both realized with some shock that I have healed quite well! Indifference! And you know I give the credit to this site as well as G*d".....Cookie2.
"The words of wisdom that helped me leave an abusive situation were these: "If I could wave a magic wand for you, and make all this disappear I would - this is something you have to do for yourself - but I will help you all I can". I took that hand, and it helped me through. We here are holding out our hands to you - if you make that decision to end abuse, and if you need support, we are here for you. Don't lie to yourself, don't put yourself down, you are important - YOU matter." Echo
"Focus on YOU. Your recovery, your life, your joy. You can do this. Keep your eye on the prize that is YOU." Knoxy
"One thing I can say about "how long will it take" - which won't be of much help either - is people process at different rates. There is no set time frame on grieving. It may take one person just a matter of months, someone else a matter of years. From what I have read and experienced, there is often a correlation b/t how long it takes and how much you were emotionally invested in the relationship. Makes sense. If you weren't very emotionally invested, it would take less time than if you life revolved around that person. Another factor would be the amount of past trauma one has not yet dealt with effectively. Many times, having a romantic relationship with an N - then being D&D brings up alot of unhealed hurts... so you're not only sifting through issues related to just the N specifically, but also alot of other unresolved past issues. So the long and short of it is ... "It takes as long as it takes". Everyone's experience is different. A frustrating answer, but it's reality. But - if you stay on course, do the hard work, introspection, therapy - you WILL get there" Louxloux
"Telling them how you feel
in a telephone call
Won't help you heal.
It won't help at all.
Writing them a letter
with bad behavior listed
won't make them act better--
your words will be twisted.
You can rant, plead, and curse,
But it simply won't do.
Ns only get worse-
You must take care of you". Zanderman.
Chances are if you are reading here, you are in a great deal of emotional pain, with not alot of hope of feeling better - as a last word, we'd like to hand you over to one of our members who kindly came back to give us an update on her progress. As you will see - there is a life after an N or P.
Would like to share an update after four years
by happyalone on Sun Nov 22, 2009 7:17 pm
Hello to all, I have been back here, to read, and thought I"d like to share my experience, as I've come from being totally and completely devastated, to a happy, resiliant, and confident lady of almost fifty four.
I found this site in late of '05, under a different screename, happywithmydog, and I hate to think where I would be, without all of the incredible support and advice, information and wisdom I was blessed with finding here. I'm not sure how many people come back after the fog lifts, to share how their lives are going , but I'd like to, actually, there are two things to share.
First, the most difficult thing to do, and of course,the most difficult are the most rewarding things to overcome, was , the fact to asked myself, what drew me to him in the first place, and what made me feel so devastated, being rejected by such a sick person, man, anyway? it took about two years to get through the anger, pain, sadness, and shock, but what I learned, was so much about myself, it taught me not so much about this psychopath, but that I tended to lean towards these types of men all my life. The worst man for me, which brought me here in '05, was actually a blessing, because now I have grown into myself, as never before.
I would also like to share, that this man has been calling me, hang up calls, since '05. I fully expect some of you to ask, why not change your phone number, move,,, ect.. but this is why.
I decided to face my fears, all of them, and change what I could for myself, and absolutely IGNORE him. I live in the mountains of New Hampshire, very rural, and I pass by him on the road almost daily. For two years I cried every single time I saw him, but the irish in me, told me to face him however long it took, to face my own problems, and now today, I drive right past, not even looking, although I know he stares at me.
I also believe, thanks to this site, I know why he has been calling me, hang ups, for all these years. It's the control, the envy that I am happy. I started a small buisness, which is already a huge sucess. I know he is aware of it. I also have worked on my home and made improvements, the place looks great. He drives by, when it's dark, probably checking on who's here, and I don't care, for that I believe is the baiting trick, to see if I respond. Thanks to this site, I know absolutely not to ever respond, and apparently, I am that tough target that he will never win back for his own sick game. I can't say thanks to this site enough times.
I will be fifty four next month, and love my home. I have become happier than I have ever been, because I had to take the hardest look at myself I have ever done. So many times I thought I would never have peace, and now here it is.
So, I am rambling, but what i want most to convey here is, it's really all about ourselves, and how we relate to what happens to us in life. Infomration gives us the necessary tools to make smart choices, but we have to be open to seeing and learning them.
This site did that for me.,
I also wrote a lovely book about being positive, and I can't bleieve it, but it's actually selling and people love it. I finally found who I am., and love life more than ever.,
So, he is no longer an issue, and I see him now for what he was, a psychopath, and a predator. I now have the tools to live my life without ever allwoing this man ever in my life again. I cannot change my phone number, because of my buisness, but now i know, that it means nothing, and every time that phone rings, I told myself to congratulate myself on all the work it took to become happy and free.
I suspect he will never stop, and will drive by every so often, even though I live on a remote dirt road, which is on the way to no where. I see him now with wise eyes, and this site gave me all that.
I wish I could help those in pain, but the only way to peace, is to look at yourself, and see that which is weak inside, that allows us to accept abuse.
I wonder sometimes what happened to the people who helped me, and who I talked to on here, four years ago. It's amazing how a site like this, even though we never meet, how sharing such intimate pain, can be such great benefit.
anyway, this is way too long,
Please know that we all have within us, the strenght to over come anything, even if we don't believe it at the time, have faith, and stay on here, and we can all live happily and with peace.
You know, it's really all about our choices, our own attitudes and sense of self. It's really very simple, basic, but to see through the fog, takes guts. I read a lot here now, and see that seems to be prevelant in decision making. Wrong decisions made in fear, insecurity, or anger. I've done them all. From what I see, our lives are gifts that are showered with all of the tiny things we take for granted, and at times we find ourselves seeing only that which we don't have. But maybe what we don't have is for a reason, things we don't need anyway.
I thought I needed him, first mistake. We need to need ourselves. I also so so believe, that there is no way to find peace, without
the most difficult look inside ourselves, there is no other way. I can see how so many people come on here, because it is all about these disordered people, but it's really an opportunity for us to learn from not just them, but how we react to them, and why.
I learned that he brought out all of those issues that were within me, and by being with him, brought them to the surface. The deep gut wrenching pain didn't really come from him, it came from within me, the part that didn't have what I thought I needed, because I wasn't there for me. Now that I am, I still wish for real love. How lucky I am to have cried my eyes out, driven my truck each day shaking with pain each time I saw him, feeling so overwhelmed that how could I go on, but I did.
I made the decision to throw fear out the window (I wrote a lovely poem about that) and conquer not him, but conquer myself.
Because I beleived in myself. I know that we can do anything, when we have that.
I admire all of you, for being on this site,and being able to be so effective in expressing to others the support that you do. I don't think I could do that, because I"m more of the type of, "do it no matter what"
I think part of my resiliance, came from a horrible, empty and no loving home. I learned to be on my own very young. And, I never felt sorry for myself, not ever.
How do you teach people to see the good, and believe in themselves? I don't know how, I only know how to do it for myself.
I think all of you are Godsends to those who are here, and if I had anything to pay back, the least I can do is offer the bit of a post
I wrote. You will never know the deep deep sadness that I had within me, only to find that I alone, could fix it. And I did.
And I found this person, this person I never knew. Know who that is? It's me! This lady started to enjoying life, singing,
writing poetry, starting the buisness she thought she could never do, people became friends that I never imagined, I looked in the mirror and saw a smile, I loved the sun, I was glad I was alive, and it just keeps getting better, because I can
I just found out today, via a friend, that the psychopath man who wrenched out my heart and my very being, is now "going downhill pretty quickly and dying " from his constant alcholism. And so it goes, the sad waste of a human being, has almost completed the process of destroying himself. And so be it, I can soon drive down the road, knowing he will no longer be driving past me. And that is sad, not for me, but for him, such a wasted life. I can have empathy for the soul who had none for me, because who he, who he was,
has nothing to do with me, for I am a beautifull soul, with love and life, and a loving heart.
Chasing a Rainbow
How often we look so far away
for what we think we're missing
unable to see in our dismay
to ourselves we are not listening
Trying to grasp beyond our reach
convinced it's all so far
Perhaps this rainbow is trying to teach
it's all where we already are
The end of the rainbow is right here
and its message is clear to see
it tells me what I want to hear
for right here is where I should be
I think especially, after the news I heard yesturday, is that we can't see ahead, and there is a bigger picture than just us.
If we trust in that, and hold on, it does all work out, if we dig in and go through the suffering. And I hate to say it, but we have to suffer, to recieve the benefits. No one else can do it for us.
That's only what happend to me, I can't speak for anyone else, but that was my road.