Tips for Online Dating and Screening for Personality Disorders

Courtesy Wikipedia

Courtesy Wikipedia

The world of internet romance is a playground for the personality disordered.  You do not know who is really behind a profile.  The narcissist, antisocial, and/or sociopath (mostly males) are particularly good at pretending to be someone else to have fun.  The personality disordered has never had an easier time preying on gullible or desperate people.  For the online predator sexual relations are thrilling conquests and nothing more.  Charming and resourceful they are incapable of sincere emotion, shame, guilt, or love.  The narcissist, sociopath, and antisocial person crave stimulation and excitement, live in the present moment unconcerned with the consequences of their behavior.   All personality disordered individuals have character traits that are ingrained, enduring patterns of thinking, feeling, behaving, and perceiving. These enduring patterns are life-long, chronic, and highly incurable.

The female personality disordered tends to be histrionic, dependent, or borderline with smaller percentages who are narcissists.  The histrionic is overly dramatic (extreme drama queen), lively, seductive, and always calling attention to themselves.  They quickly become bored with normal routines and display irrational outbursts or temper tantrums.  They initially come across as charming and outgoing.  Once a relationship is established they become controlling, demanding, and inconsiderate.  The borderline is tricky to spot at first because they present much better than they are but underneath the façade are chronic feelings of emptiness, problems with being alone, emotional instability, intense anger, and identity confusion.  They display impulsivity, self-destructive acts, and suicidal gestures like cutting.  The essential features of dependent personality disorder are a constant demand for attention, lack of self-confidence or the ability to function independently.  The dependent personality dreads making decisions, acting autonomously, and lacks follow through on goals.   They look to others for an identity.  The dependent will do anything to avoid responsibility for his or her self.

With a radar for people’s vulnerability’s the personality disordered can easily manipulate, exploit, control and deceive.  Unfortunately the desperate or naive person’s online profile is easy for them to spot.   A perpetrator can guess a lot about a person’s character through written words and even photographs.   The personality disordered person is superficially charming, likable, and good at starting a relationship.  They have no capacity for empathy and never develop the caring part of a healthy partnership.  In other words, he or she has no real feelings other than rage.  When you ask a tough question, they will change the subject or give a vague response.

Keep in mind that we all share some neuroses.  People can have self-involved narcissistic personality features or a highly dramatic presentation.  The difference is that the person is capable of feeling remorse for being insensitive or mean.  The behavior is uncharacteristic and different from their usual self.  In contrast, the pathological behavior in people with personality disorders is in character and routine for them.  Neuroses may develop at any time; personality disorders are life-long.

If you have decided to give online dating a try it is wise to be aware of your vulnerabilities and appropriate boundaries.  Educating yourself about red flags avoids potential hardship and damage to well-being. You must carefully protect your identity and not disclose personal information quickly.  If you have a history of picking abusive partners it is necessary to ask questions and listen for emotional problems.

Codependents are particularly vulnerable to the breath taking pursuit and initial charm of the pathological.  What is a codependent?  Codependents are people who attempt to keep balance in an abusive relationship and will distort reality in response to the mistreatment.  They try endlessly to please an abusive person.  Codependents deny feelings, dismiss intuition, and feel responsible for other people’s actions.  For example, “If only I had been better sexually, he or she would not have to cheat.  They distort reality to preserve the relationship and avoid the emotional pain admitting the truth would bring.  The high tolerance for inappropriate behavior is often established in childhood with caregivers that are emotionally unavailable and/or abusive.  A typical approach of the pathological is to overwhelm a codependent date with intensity and attention, so the person ignores red flags.  Remember if someone appears too good to be true, your observation is probably right.  A match with genuine intent and healthy boundaries knows true love takes time to discover.

People coming out of a relationship can be vulnerable to the pathological because they need to heal.  It takes time to get over someone you truly love.  Bypassing the grief process stops discovery of the core issues that inhibited a satisfying partnership.  Focusing on a new relationship avoids painful feelings of loss.  It can also make you vulnerable to jump into a new relationship that feels wrong to end loneliness.   Happy long-term relationships are formed by people who are already happy.  Hooking up with the pathological will cause more pain and problems.

So how do you protect yourself from poor choices?  First, know what qualities you are looking for in a partner.  Make a list of these qualities and look at it when considering a meet-up.  You must take your time screening a potential match before jumping into a relationship.  Do not be desperate; stop yourself from acting impulsively.  Temper your longing for emotional fulfillment and love.  If you are using a dating site that offers get to know you questions take advantage of them.  Especially questions about family and past relationships.  See if a potential match answers your questions directly and with some detail.  Have they taken the time to read your profile?  When you receive communication evaluate the persons profile carefully for values and character.  If you are interested, have someone you trust give their opinion of the person.  Is the profile grandiose or shallow?  Is the profile self-serving and irrelevant? Do they describe realistic character traits about themselves and those they want in a partner?   What is important to them in a relationship?  What does their picture(s) say about them?  Are there an excessive amount of vain pictures?  Is there a picture to go along with the person’s profile?

Speak on the telephone before you meet and be discerning, you can tell a lot from hearing someone speak.  Chatting with a potential match is wise and a good safety measure.  If you feel uncomfortable or get a bad vibe just hang up.  Once you know the person’s name, and before you meet, complete an online search.  Verify as much as you can about their integrity.  Be cautious and open minded.  Find out where they work and look at the company’s website to see if they are listed.   Remember to always meet in a public place, drive yourself, and let someone know where you’re going.  Tell a friend or family member who you are meeting, when you plan to return, and the person’s phone number.  If something feels wrong, trust your instincts, and get out.

Screening Questions to Ask Yourself

  1. Does he or she blame their mistakes or failures on others or the world at large?  Listen closely to their relationship, family and work history.
  2. Do they acknowledge their part in the ending of past relationships or problems with their partners, children, siblings, or parents?
  3. Do they push for intimacy, start making future plans, and immediately place you in the role of the love of their life? Run….
  4. Do they talk endlessly about themselves
  5. Have they had police contact/arrests for domestic violence, fighting, or criminal behavior?
  6. Do they look for reasons to be insulted?  Do they rant excessively?
  7. Are they easily insulted by people when you are out in public?
  8. Do they express negative or aggressive statements about friends, poor people, and the mentally challenged, needy or loving person?
  9. Are they verbally violent in their communication with putdowns, brutal honesty, threats, or hostility?
  10. Is the person overly dramatic, and always calling attention to themselves?
  11. Do they quickly become bored with normal routines?
  12. Do they use their physical appearance to draw attention to self?
  13. Are they arrogant or superior in behaviors and attitudes?
  14. Do they disregard or diminish your feelings?
  15. Does he or she call or text you constantly?
  16. Are they demanding, but don’t come through for you in return?

*********************************************************************

Thank you for reading this post. I’ve dedicated my personal and professional life to the importance of non-violence and self-compassion by teaching from my experience.  As a result, I’ve learned a lot about what it takes to create a decent relationship.  And, as I learn and grow, I teach self-compassion and give advice I use myself, in the hopes that it helps you to improve your own life.

Roberta

Advertisements

The Punishing Sexuality of the Narcissist

230px-Martin_van_Maele_-_La_Comtesse_au_fouet_01

Foot Fetish Courtesy of Wikipedia

The narcissist is threatened by a partner’s sexual and emotional needs and believes they are out to trap them and suck them dry.  This is the narcissist’s classic projection of their true inner self.  Because of this projection he or she tortures and abuses.  They can be ruthless in their pursuit of prey and create misery in their wake. To calm irrational fears they pathologize intimate others to maintain power and control.  They are constitutionally incapable of feeling empathy or remorse for their actions.

Most narcissists prefer pornography and masturbation to emotionally attached, mature, adult sex.  Some are into sadomasochistic sexual relationships; some use pornography to become aroused; others become addicted to it.  The psychological or physical suffering (including humiliation) of the victim is sexually exciting to the sadistic narcissist.  Witnessing his or her pain is what the sadist finds arousing.  Their sexuality is not a connected and balanced part of life.  The sexual act is a performance-oriented genital experience focused on the hunt and momentary high of orgasm.  Sometimes they are latent homosexuals or secretly bisexual.  Many have fetishes which involve the use of nonliving objects.  Spandex, lingerie, cross dressing, boas, high heels, leather restraints, etc. may be used for sexual stimulation.  It can start to take increasingly more violence or the use of fetish objects to become sexually aroused enough to orgasm.  Boredom in the bedroom comes quickly and ejaculation may be impossible without toys or inflicting pain.

After the pyrotechnic beginnings, sex is likely to become an impersonal and emotionally distant experience.  Most heterosexual male and female narcissists hate their opposite gender.  Punishment by emotional withdrawing and abstaining from sex is inflicted on loving partners to maintain control.  The narcissist sadistically frustrates for pleasure and can become celibate within a relationship.  Sex then is only performed to keep their partner from leaving or for the demonstration of physical and psychological domination.  They are incapable of true emotional intimacy and dread the needs of a lover.  Unable to love or feel empathy, the relationship becomes chaotic, lacking any measure of authentic intimacy.  The life force is sucked out of the partner leaving them hollow.  They are notorious for cheating and/or using the services of prostitutes.  Partners are wise to be tested for sexually transmitted diseases.

Narcissists rarely seek help for their soulless, emotionless, genital only sex and destructive mistreatment of others.  Their need to have sexual power is directly proportional to the hatred and rage they feel within.  If you are reading this post you probably have suffered to hang on to this type of painful relationship and long to find real love.  You must start with learning to nurture yourself and seeking to understand the intense longing that led to your choice of a narcissistic partner.  The truth is, their numbers are great and odds are many of us will encounter this personality disorder in our search for a healthy partner.  Find something you love to do and do it!  Warm relationships and fulfilling sexual experiences flow from a person who feels good about his or her life and is on a path to self-fulfillment.  Take your focus off finding a relationship and begin to find your own source of love and power. You will then tend to attract genuine people who want to love you.

************************************************************************

Thank you for reading this post. I’ve dedicated my personal and professional life to the importance of non-violence and self-compassion by teaching from my experience.  As a result, I’ve learned a lot about what it takes to express needs and put an end to relationship abuse.  And, as I learn and grow, I teach self-compassion and give advice I use myself, in the hopes that it helps you to improve your own life.

Roberta

Energy Vampires: Emotional Sadism and the Narcissistic Relationship

master of mirrorsThe narcissist is clearly sadistic in his or her rejection of others and in feelings of superiority.  What is a narcissist? Narcissism is a condition in which a person feels pathological self-hatred and is preoccupied with projecting a lovable image.  They are obsessed with this false image and direct tremendous energy to other people’s impressions of them.  Because the projected image is so loveable they are effective in eliciting real love from others.  People’s impression of the false image feels like self-love to the narcissist.  They are incapable of loving themselves or others, but want to be loved.  The narcissist craves admiration and will manipulate the needs and wishes of everyone to obtain it.  When a partner falls for the “lovable” image the narcissist acquires a sense of self through the look of love reflected back in the eyes and actions of the person.  The narcissist needs for constant attention and caretaking takes center stage as desires of others are ignored and denied.  As a relationship progresses the narcissist will not celebrate a partner’s accomplishments, compliment them on anything, and will ignore you in social settings.  They genuinely don’t care about your needs and are experts at pretending they do until they have control. Than the self-involved energy vampire punishes you for having desires because they demand that all of your attention and energy be focused on them.  They suck the life force and joy out of everyone they can take hostage. They prefer your admiration and awe, but eventually their behavior destroys any feelings of love and they will then settle for negative attention. This makes the emotional sadist feel all-powerful and capable of any cruelty.

The narcissist slowly progresses from minimal emotional assaults to intentionally deliberate attacks.  Distancing and cold rejecting aloofness is a favorite weapon.  It doesn’t matter to him if you cry because he is not affected and doesn’t care.  He feels nothing and is not concerned about what you are feeling.  The energy vampire is not interested in your character.  The emotionally sadistic narcissist gets enjoyment from hurting someone.  They are experts at manipulating people’s emotions until they are hurt more than physical abuse.  He intimidates his partners to avoid expressing criticism and disapproval of his actions and decisions.  His partner or children learn that this triggers fits of temper and rage attacks and turns him into an argumentative and irritable person.  His extreme reactions are a punishment for perceived inconsiderateness and insensitivity of his true inner state.  The narcissist blames his partner for his behavior, accuses them of provoking his outbursts and believes that they should be punished for their misbehavior.  Apologies, unless accompanied by requests for forgiveness are not enough.  The fuel of the narcissist’s rage is expended mainly on bizarre verbal accusations directed at made-up and imaginary intentions of the victim.  If you question the appropriateness of the behavior, no longer mirroring admiration and submissiveness, this causes him or her to doubt their illusory self-esteem.  You are then subjected to a period of terror where they try to hurt you for not recognizing their entitlement to your unquestioned obedience.  You will be belittled and humiliated with displays of aggression and emotional violence in countless forms.  His or her behavior changes from putting you on a pedestal to a severe devaluing of you as a worthy person.  The narcissist is repulsed by people judged by him to be useless.  These extreme alterations between seeing you as flawless to complete unworthiness make long-term relationships with the narcissist all but impossible.  He will exploit you cruelly and severely.  He uses you to get confirmation of the accuracy of his superior false image.

The emotional sadist’s abuse is kept secret by conditioning his partners, children, and sometimes colleagues or employees to not tell.  People often find themselves involved emotionally in an intimate or employment relationship before they discover the narcissist true nature.  His victims typically come from family environments where there is abuse and a “don’t talk” rule.  This especially is the case in families with sexual abuse and alcoholism to hide.  So secrecy is a major weapon in keeping the mistreatment confidential.  They keep up a public façade appearing nonthreatening and even altruistic and in private are evil and aggressive.  The victims keep the secrets safe by constructing an explanation to make sense of the cruelty, “He just can’t deal with intimacy” or “She had a bad childhood.”  Some victims are raised to not “air dirty laundry” and keep silent about the abuse to family and friends. The victim is held in traumatic bondage by being convinced they are the problem and to be blamed for the misconduct.  By the time the victim discovers the truth they find it difficult to leave the relationship.  The emotional battering renders the wounded with feelings of helplessness and shame for not seeing through the angelic façade.

Dealing with a narcissists sadistic behavior is pretty dismal.  Their numbers in society are great and it is imperative that this personality disorder becomes readily recognizable.  I have worked with countless numbers of violent narcissistic men and women, many more I am sure that missed my clinical recognition.  If you have found yourself living in quiet desperation or working with an emotional and/or physically abusive narcissist, please educate yourself and others about the abuse.  I have written a post on “How Codependents Leave Abusive Narcissistic Relationships” and “How Codependents Leave Employment with Narcissistic Boss” that you might find helpful to read.

**************************************************************************

Thank you for reading this post.  I’ve dedicated my personal and professional life to the importance of non-violence and self-compassion by teaching from my experience.  As a result, I’ve learned a lot about what it takes to create healthy relationships.  And, as I learn and grow, I teach self-compassion and give advice I use myself, in the hopes that it helps you to improve your own life.

Roberta

Codependents Learning to Communicate Needs in Relationships

Communication

Part of having successful relationships is learning to communicate clearly, directly, and assertively. Effective communication is the key to getting what we need and want and to having satisfying relationships with others. This is especially important when acknowledging feelings such as disappointment or anger directly, as what we need and want can be very important in our love relationship. Also, having positive relationships  and addressing codependency issues are important in keeping stress down, reducing tension, and increasing positive experiences.  What is codependency in relationships?

Codependents are people who find it difficult to ask for what they need or to stand up for themselves and often let other people push them around or take advantage. They are unable to make up their mind and may evade an issue in conversation.  This communication style can make a codependent attractive to an abuser.  Signs of an abusive person is someone who talks over people, expresses feelings in a way that violates boundaries, and who makes inappropriate demands.  During an argument this person intimidates with piercing eye contact, takes an overbearing posture, makes “you” statements in a loud voice with demanding tones, and interrupts often.  And you do not have to allow their coercive demands to control the course of your life. You have the power to live your own life by not letting the demands of others control you.

Effective communication involves acknowledging feelings directly, instead of making others guess at your feelings or having your feelings come out in other ways. In most situations direct communication is the appropriate choice. However, if you are communicating with someone who is yelling, you might be more reactive by indirectly expressing angry feelings instead of openly addressing them. This creates a disconnect between what you say and what you do. Your true feelings end up being demonstrated through actions, not words.  Many codependents protect themselves from seeing things that are too painful in addictions, (alcoholism, food, sex, gambling) compulsive caretaking, feeling miserable, guilty or ashamed.  It is okay to say no to people when that is what you want. Denying feelings does not stop pain or compulsive behavior.

Being vulnerable can be frightening, especially if we have lived with people who abused, mistreated, manipulated, or did not appreciate us. By recognizing that our rights and needs are just as important as others, we learn to be direct and clear in our statements and behaviors. We use words to forge a closer connection. We disclose how we feel in a way that reflects self-responsibility, directness, and honesty. Repressing thoughts and feelings does not turn us into the person we want to be.  Give yourself permission to say what you want and stop when you are done. Codependents are usually good at respecting other people’s opinions and needs, but do not have respect for their own. You can learn new behaviors and break demeaning beliefs about yourself that can become self-fulfilling prophecies.

Following are suggestions for assertive communication and how to resolve conflict in relationships:

Describe issues clearly and concisely. Let the other person know your concerns. Don’t beat around the bush. Take responsibility for what you want or don’t want and ask for it directly.

Take the initiative in bringing a topic up and show the other person that you respect your own needs.

Keep your focus on the matter at hand without getting diverted onto other issues.

Make good eye contact and face the person you’re speaking with, but don’t invade their personal space.

Speak firmly, positively and loudly enough to be heard.

Match your words with your true needs.

Bring up the issue with confidence.

Avoid attacking, threatening, or judgmental statements.

Be fair, truthful, and stick to your values.

Maintain a posture and attitude of equality.

Don’t apologize for your needs. Don’t expect people to apologize for their needs.

Use “I” statements: When you yelled at me, I felt disrespected. I need you to express  your feelings without yelling.

Talk ABOUT feelings, rather than act them out.

Edit unnecessary negative content.

********************************************************************

Thank you for reading my post. I’ve dedicated my personal and professional life to the importance of non-violence and self-compassion by teaching from my experience.  As a result, I’ve learned a lot about what it takes to express needs and put an end to relationship abuse.  And, as I learn and grow, I teach self-compassion and give advice I use myself, in the hopes that it helps you to improve your own life.

Roberta

How to Stop Obsessing Over a Narcissistic Relationship

Love_wheelObsessing over a narcissistic relationship is stressful and tiring; leading you to feel down, frustrated or hopeless.  Fixating over your painful experience can interfere with your life by keeping you from doing the things you want to do.  A particularly helpful skill to stop compulsive thoughts of the abuse is learning to control your attention, the degree to which you are focused on the mistreatment, the more you are aware of it.  This is not about denying your pain; it is attending to something else.  Negative thoughts are ideas that we tell ourselves and are not always accurate reflections of reality.

When we take feelings to seriously, we let how we feel control all our decisions.  While learning to focus on the things you have control over, you will empower yourself to end the destructive attachment. Letting go of your resentments (desire to hurt your partner) happens when you believe in your right to happiness.  Sometimes we need time to ready ourselves to cope. Change your thinking about the abuse, and about yourself, so that you don’t blame yourself, or believe things are hopeless.  The following steps are ways to stop your obsessions.

I believe the first step below requires us to give up our desire for vengeance and letting go of a victim mentality.  If you want revenge let it be your own success at creating a decent manageable life.  Allowing your abuser to rent space in your head means they get to continue punishing you.  Narcissists feel all-powerful when they think your life is miserable with them, and especially without them.  Feel your anger and use your emotional pain to motivate change in your life.

  1. Take responsibility in part for having chosen your abusive partner and/or for staying in purgatory.  Accept the lesson and learn from the relationship pain so you don’t repeat it. Ask yourself, “what is the gift” from this relationship?
  2. Stop talking about your ex-partner to others; refuse to establish a victim identity. Create a state of well-being within you.
  3. Spend time each morning focused on forgiving the narcissist for not being able to love you, so you can free your ego from the desire to hurt them. Move on to a new freedom.
  4. Care enough about your well-being to stop the self-punishing thoughts. Refuse to build drama stories in your mind.
  5. Practice hearing and feeling the critical voice in your head. Banish fear and guilt from your mind. Acknowledge and observe the destructiveness of your compulsive thoughts and emotions.
  6. Keep your thinking and feeling centered on good things, care about how you feel. Lower your dark curtain and emerge from darkness.
  7. Work as hard on accepting what is good in your life as you have the painful and the difficult. Learn to trust yourself by finding out what is right for you.

Thank you for reading this article. I have dedicated my personal and professional life to the importance of non-violence and self-love by teaching from my own experience. As a result, I’ve learned a lot about abusive relationships and what it takes to put an end to victimization.  And, as I learn and grow, I teach self-compassion and give advice I use myself, in the hopes that it helps you to improve your own life.

Secrets of a Narcissist

Dissociated Personality States Courtesy Wikipedia

Dissociated Personality States Courtesy Wikipedia

Richard (not his real name) profiled me as his perfect victim on an online dating site rated as a top trusted relationship provider in the USA.  For many decades he had fooled friends, family, and colleagues while sexually abusing the clients that he was ethically bound to do no harm to.  Richard has a long trail of soul murdered women in his pursuit of ideal love and omnipotence.

He is a charming, seducing, angelic narcissist creating misery in his wake.  Narcissists tend to damage the lives of almost every person they encounter by lying, betraying, and manipulating.  For Richard’s ex-wives and child their life with him was purgatory.  For all he could keep hostage, it was misery, a nightmare.  For some partners it must have felt like evil.

According to the DSM-IV-TR, a patient must exhibit five or more of the following traits in order to be diagnosed with NPD:

● shows arrogant, haughty behaviors or attitudes

● grandiose sense of self-importance

● preoccupation with fantasies of unlimited success, power, brilliance, beauty, or ideal love

● belief that he or she is “special” and unique and can only be understood by, or should associate with, other special or high-status people (or institutions)

● need for excessive admiration

● sense of entitlement

● takes advantage of others to achieve his or her own ends

● lacks empathy

● often envious of others or believes that others are envious of him or her

Narcissist are compulsive in their pursuit of narcissistic supply (awe, admiration, attention, even being feared) and projecting a loving image that is compatible with his or her false self-image.  A narcissist’s projected image tends to be lovable until he or she gets tired of being nice.  No longer able to manufacture adoration in their partner; being feared then becomes narcissistic supply.  A victim’s emotional pain and destroyed self-esteem feeds the fantasy of being all-powerful and capable of anything.

The start of our relationship was a whirlwind romance.  The chemistry appeared to be instant for both of us.  We met outside a bookstore.  I was sitting on a bench, when I locked eyes with him, the sexual tension was immediate.  My whole body was vibrating with aliveness.  He mistook my loving nativity and longing for being gullible.  He underestimated my integrity and commitment for doing no harm to others.  He was too good to be true and I didn’t understand that meant a nightmare.  He came across as a confident, charming, attentive, professional in my field.  Shortly after we were dating he started making plans and began to tell me he loved me. I was the ideal reflection of true love for his preoccupation with projecting a lovable image.    He had no intention of following through on the promises he made.  He had picked me to better his status and save him from financial disaster.  My life had been so extraordinary as a result of my personal adversities that I believed this miracle man was possible.  His insidious ability to mirror my wish-fulfillment (delusion) for a perfect man was award-winning as was the lovability of his projected image.  My emotions of awe, respect, admiration, and attention were food for his narcissistic supply.  He catered to my needs and wishes because he craved my reflected love and admiration.  It was through my reactions that he felt an illusionary sense of self.  Richard was sadly divorced from his true self and married to his image.  He was an empty soul forced to use me in order to feel his existence.  If I had not caught his written admission of the crimes he committed over several decades I might have become his mere instrument for gratification.  He was never bothered by his history of unscrupulous behavior and the constant exploitation of his victims.  Indifferent to the consequences of his actions, the damage and pain he inflicted on his partners, son, friends, clients or family.  The written admission of the crimes he committed came as a result of a major life crisis which directly threatened his projected and perceived image.  Life crises are typically the only times a narcissist may seek help.  A girlfriend he had lived with for 10 years ended their relationship and at the same time his 16-year-old son from a previous marriage got a restraining order put in place, stating to the judge, “My father is too immature to be a parent.”  In a moment of desperation, two years before we met, he wrote about his secrets in a journal.  In his disorganized character style he left the journal in his library bookshelf.

Early in our relationship, after declarations of love, and before his proposal, he left his email page open on his computer.  I noticed emails coming from our on-line dating site.  I mentioned this to him asking if he was still looking for a match.  I saw irritation cross his face as he told me he was off the dating site, but they kept sending him email.  I took him at his word and let it go.  Later, when he asked for my hand in marriage, I accepted.  Weeks after the engagement the manipulation began for me to pay his bills.  My financial solution was to sell my home and move in to his house.  I reasoned that moving in was the right action to take because we were lifetime partners.  I was very fortunate because the beginning of grace was being manifested.  I was settled in his home when my lap top stop working and he allowed me to use his computer.  Again, one evening when he was attending a men’s support group, he left his email page open.  I saw communications with women from several dating sites.  I did not open the messages.  I was shocked, devastated, and numb.  I told him what I had discovered when he came home.  He exploded accusing me of bizarre intentions and accusations.  We later explored the cognitive distortions that allowed him to verbally attack my character.  We are both in the mental health field and empathy would have been the emotionally appropriate reaction to my discovery, especially since he professed innocence.  My red flags went up.  Several days later I opened the “Windows Media Center” program on his lap top to look at some pictures we had taken and the program opened his email site.  There I saw several communications with women from various dating sites.  One of the emails was dated after he had asked me to marry him and I opened the communication.  The truth of his betrayal was revealed to me.  I was so upset that I left our bed that night to sleep on the couch in his library loft.  I looked through the multitude of self-help books in the shelves to see if I could find one on sexual addiction.  It was then that I found a brown journal outlining his sex crimes against clients and the history of abusive treatment with women he married and partnered.  After reading his disclosures I wasn’t sure what kind of person I was dealing with and feared I might be in personal danger.  I decided the best action was to go back to bed and pretend I was okay.  Fortunately, his place of work was at a great distance from home.  He had a routine of staying overnight with friends or at work on Monday and Tuesday nights, coming home on Wednesday nights and then he was off from work on Thursdays.  Monday morning I consulted with a colleague on the discovery of his crimes and then took the evidence to the police.  I arranged to move all my belongings out of his house and went into hiding as the FBI Sex Crime Unit and local police evaluated the evidence.  In the meantime, he didn’t know I had left until he came home on Wednesday night.  The phone calls and emails began immediately.  Richard did not know he was under police investigation.  I did not respond to his attempts to contact me and have not spoken to him since this happen several years ago.  No contact is the only way to deal with a sociopathic narcissist when you leave.

Following is one of his emails to me after I left his house and below are a few excerpts from his journal.

Hi Baby,

Please don’t believe your mind!  You know about negative fear based thinking.  What you saw is what you saw, but like looking at the glass you can see it as half-full or half empty.  Listen to my heart.  Carlos Constenada says in, The Teaching of Don Juan, “when you are at the crossroads and both roads go nowhere choose the one with HEART IN IT.”  Please listen to my heart.  We were beginning to plan our lives and our wedding.  I want to marry you.  I want to give you your ring back.  I am sorry.  I know I let you down.  I don’t want “the ring” it’s yours, let me give it back.  I have been hurt and confused by this too.  Forgive me, I was wrong.  I am sorry I was wrong in not protecting your mind from the painful thoughts that I betrayed you.  If I would had destroyed those emails this would never have happened.  I DID NOT BETRAY YOU AND NEVER WOULD.  I am sorry you read those emails.  I pissed you off.  If you need more proof that I can be trusted, than I will give it to you.  Help me help us so I can help you.  You punished me enough, but let US work it out.  I will go to therapy with you.  I will go to groups.  I want a life with you, whatever it takes.  I never had the opportunity to have my hearts dream with a woman.  We have the juice to have a real beautiful romantic life.  Let your anger go.  Let us have each other back.”

Excerpts from his journal:

I have used woman as objects and manipulated them for my own purposes.  I used Linda (not her real name) as a sexual object to clean house and serve my needs, so I could read and do for myself for self serving purposes.  I married Sally (not her real name) because I thought I could use her to provide for my security.  We were compatible.  She had more competence in business and with finances.  She wanted to have a child.  She was someone who would take risks.

**************************************

I have been willing to use anyone.  For years I would do the beach patrol and use women’s bodies to relieve my sexual narcissism.  I hurt people with sex.  I used clients for my needs.  I used clients and I used my sexual instinct.  I wanted so many women.  I had sex with many clients to meet my own needs.  I have used women as sexual objects to control for my own joy.

***************************

Sex, Drugs & Rock N Roll.  I am a bad ass risk-taking tough guy.  I got my body in shape to protect myself.  I live in the basic instincts.  I have a persona of a hunk.  To be a man meant you could endure more pain and take more risk.  I was willing to challenge people and use force to get my way.

****************************

I have had a strong lust for the touch of attractive women in my life.  I was not much interested in her character.  I am a sex hound, a cheat, someone who has stolen when given a chance.  I have an interest only in what I can get and at times I am desperate and have had to settle.  I settled with Linda, Sally, Karen, and Joyce because of what they could do for me.  Diane was someone I could use and she had a house.

*******************************

I used my desires for sex, alcohol and pleasure to get my basic instincts met to dominate and control.  “Find, Feel, F…k, Forget.”

None of Richards’s victims have come forward.  Due to confidentiality laws, information could not be obtained from the clinics and hospitals he worked at over the years.  Written admission of crimes is not enough to press charges or hold muster in a court of law.  My hope is that this experience has stopped him from abusing anymore victims.  He has been a great teacher for me and a gift to my work with violent clients.

Thank you for reading this article. I’ve dedicated my personal and professional life to the importance of non-violence and self-compassion by teaching from my experience.  As a result, I’ve learned a lot about what it takes to put an end to relationship abuse.  And, as I learn and grow, I teach self-compassion and give advice I use myself, in the hopes that it helps you to improve your own life.