I’ve been there.
I’m not just rewriting information that has been written all over the Internet millions of times. I actually lived this.
I actually went through this horror, 3 years of horror to be more precise.
We met and we fell in love, at least I know I did. It was like a fairy tale, almost too good to be true.
I should have known right from the start that life never works that way. I should have known that something would go wrong.
I should have known that I was standing at the edge of a cliff. The view was beautiful but one step further and I would step toward certain death.
Yes, that is what I call life with him, certain death.
Actually, dying was a beautiful thought in comparison with what he was doing to me. Dying was an easy way out which I refused to take, although I was very tempted.
You know when they teach you the difference between the good and the bad, well some people tell you to look after the devil because he will present himself as something you crave, something you won’t be able to resist.
Evil consumes and seduces you and he was my evil. He was my devil who enchanted me and tried to destroy me.
But my wounded soul somehow found the strength to patch itself and get the hell away from him!
He was so perfect, considerate, loving. I thought I had it all, I thought life had given me a gift of love. I thought it had given me a chance to be happy until the end. But it was all just a test.
Now I realize his toxic soul was drawn to me to make me stronger, to teach me how to resist, to teach me how to fight for myself. It brought me thousands of tears and an enormous heartbreak but I learned the lesson and I won.
He was a freakin’ artist.
He knew to disguise himself so well that no one would ever doubt, not even for a second, his kindness and his fake smiles.
He’d been playing the role of a caring do-gooder for far too long and everyone bought it. I fell for it until we started living together until he couldn’t hide his real face anymore.
As I learned to oppose him and took a stand for myself, his anger and his toxic interior grew bigger and stronger.
His actions became more destructive. He felt he was losing control over me and he became even worse.
There were moments when I thought he would give up on me and leave me alone but he only became more obsessed with me because he couldn’t stand the fact that I was about to leave him.
He couldn’t accept that he’d lost this battle. And then I would pay the price for wanting freedom, for craving a world without abuse.
This is what he did to me, this is how he blew his cover and proved that he was a toxic manipulator:
1. He played the victim
When we argued, when I’d had enough of his lies and confronted him, he would play the victim card.
Somehow he always made it about himself. He knew exactly when to turn his charm on and pretend he was sorry, that he’d made a mistake and that now he felt like shit. I fell for it every time.
I thought he was really sorry, I thought he had realized what he was doing to me and most importantly, I thought he hadn’t done it on purpose.
That’s when I felt like crap. I felt guilty for cornering him and accusing him of being a manipulative asshole. I felt sorry for him and I gave him another chance.
There were hundreds of situations and I gave him hundreds of new chances and still nothing ever changed.
This is how he would play me and make me feel sorry for him, so at the end of every argument I would end up apologizing to him and I would forget why I was mad at him in the first place. That was his plan all along.
2. He pretended to respect me
As I said, he was kind and loving from the start.
He wanted to give me the world. He listened to every word I said and he made all my wishes come true.
He was the man I had dreamed of spending the rest of my life with. Wasn’t I so stupid and blind?
In the beginning, he really listened to everything I said. When I was talking, he paid attention but not because he cared for me and was interested in what I had to say but because he wanted to take advantage of it.
He listened to me because he wanted to use all the information he could to manipulate me whenever he wanted.
His plan was to turn me into an obedient puppet, a woman without an opinion, without a spine.
He wanted me to dance to the music he played. And for a while, he succeeded.
3. He guilt-tripped me
He was always next to me, watching over everything I did and he always found a flaw. Even when I gave it my best, he came and crapped all over it.
I thought that nothing I did was right. I thought that I was incapable of living, let alone doing anything.
So, I took all my trust and put it into him because I thought he would help me and teach me to finally succeed.
That was my biggest mistake and his biggest triumph.
When I wanted to do something for myself, he let me but he made sure I felt guilty for doing it. And when I’d go out without him, I wouldn’t enjoy myself.
I would only think about him and the fact that he was home alone while I was having fun.
So I’d drop everything and go back home to him, go back to the misery and pain. He wanted that from the start.
4. He was full of promises
If you’d heard his speeches and his promises, you would have thought that you were the luckiest girl alive.
He made promises built upon each other and none of them ever came true.
They were just empty words tossed around without a purpose, except to make me blind and keep me in line, under control.
I never got anything he told me I would and I was never supposed to. Those things were just said to fool me and make me wait patiently for something nice to happen.
And you know what? Nothing nice ever happened, only the things he wanted to happen and my feelings never counted.
He was the most important thing in our relationship and as long as he was happy, we were fine.
5. He pretended he wanted to help me
He pretended he was so worried about me.
He lied to me and pretended to care so much, and yet he never did anything for me to take the burden off my shoulders. It was just words followed with no action.
Even when he ‘wanted’ to help me, he would choose a perfect time to offer himself. Usually, when I didn’t need him to help me, or when I knew I would do something better than him.
And the catch is, he knew it. A few times, there were situations where he deliberately did something wrong just to get rid of the ‘helping me part’ and to make sure I never asked him again.
It was all planned in advance and I really never stood a chance against him.
6. He was always criticizing and judging me
He made sure that I knew my place. He made sure that I would never get this crazy idea in my head that I could do whatever I wanted. And I could, because I was better than him and he knew it.
That was his greatest fear. So he wanted to degrade me and make me feel like I wasn’t good enough for anything.
He wanted to make sure I didn’t even try anything by convincing me in advance that I would fail.
He judged everything I did and he had to criticize even the things I did right.
That was killing me from the inside.
Slowly, my self-respect and self-esteem started to vanish. I didn’t have faith in myself because I thought I was incompetent.
Believe me, after some time, you really start thinking that way about yourself. You really start thinking that God put you on this planet with no purpose whatsoever, so you give in. You give yourself to him completely because you think that at least he will know what to do with you.
That’s where his manipulative behavior will take you—to doubting yourself, to the verge of self-hatred.
Now I’m finally free from that hell but I’m far from being fine. It’s just a sentence I say to people to get them to leave me alone. I’m lying to them but I’m not lying to myself.
I know what I’ve been through but I don’t know how to get rid of all the pain and humiliation. But I’m not lying to myself. I know it’s going to be hard.
I’m falling apart because I’ve survived the hardest battle life has thrown at me and now I’m healing and counting my blessings.
It will take a while until I come to life again. Love? I’m not sure if it exists but I won’t cross it off my list because I won’t lie to myself.