I tried to take the stones from his hands; I tried talking, texting, writing, believing, settling, begging, tears and anger. I always tried to be the peacemaker, to give him what he wanted, while attempting to maintain some dignity. That was unacceptable to him; he wanted to control the terms completely. The terms harmed me. It carried on. Every time I tried to kill the flame, he would always reignite it.
My drive for love, for closeness, caused me to become a junkie, to make bad choices and impede my ability to move away from the “amphetamine-like high” of the beginning of our romance. Eventually, I was plunged into gut-wrenching despair, this rocketing from the high and lows of my craving for Paul, who fed and starved my addiction.
The wild, mercurial relationship shackled me to an opiate-like anxiety. I was living on the edge of life, – it was like clinging to the verge of a cliff 24 hours a day. I longed for serenity, for the harmonious security of attachment.
I thought there was something wrong with me, that it was my problem until we went to counselling. I started to figure out the signs of the abuse I had missed. It took another few months, but it was the spark to my delirious compulsion to end the relationship.
On a couple of occasions, as I thought about leaving him, he would raise the goal post and promise me he loved me, he wanted me, he needed me. So I would vanish the misgivings gnawing at my mind, stay with him. I should have paid more attention to my ‘gut instinct’ while I still had the aptitude to question his stories and behavior.
As the crazy-making, intensifies, I react with despair, rage, and panic to his seemingly benign happenings or comments appearing the crazy one. He makes my reactive behavior the focus telling me and everyone else how crazy I am. But the truth is he wears ‘the mask of sanity’ which enables him to indulge his twisted crazy-making off me.
Just before our relationship ended, he had spoken of the importance for us to protect ourselves. I puzzled over what exactly he meant, and those words came back to haunt me. Without a doubt, the worst was yet to come.
I don’t give a shit about discretion or prissiness. You ambushed me. You are destroying me, you have wounded me, and I am supposed to keep quiet. What words am I supposed to use for what you’ve done to me, for what you’re doing to me?
With my psychiatrist, we analyzed his treatment of me carefully. It forced me to look at the inconsistency of his nature, his deceit, his caustic presence in my life. We were like two scientists working on a project, building a case study. That’s what saved me. It was a relief to discover that I was not a crazy person, he had driven me crazy something known as “Gaslighting.” As we built our dossier, it became evident that he had behaved like a narcissist, but it went even further he also acted like a sociopath as he had no conscience.
As tears welled up in my eyes, I dropped my face into my hands, the tears evolving into wailing. Paul tucked in close to me on the small couch, stiff and upright, not a flinch, not a flicker, totally still. The air was thick, suffocating me. A moment suspended and another. I felt the soft touch of the psychotherapists hand and her gentle voice.
Eventide Love – A psychological Thriller.
I am writing a book on emotional abuse as a psychological thriller based on my story.
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