Releasing The Hurt

When we were with the narcissist he intentionally did things to hurt us, perhaps some times he didn’t even know he was hurting us because he is incapable of understanding why we hurt.

Once again that brings us back to NO CONTACT. Every time we have contact with the narcissist we are setting ourselves up to be hurt. Now some of us have no choice because we have children with the N and must be in constant association whether we like it or not. In that case we must let go of any expectation of the ex. If he was capable of changing and dealing with us in a way that wasn’t hurtful we wouldn’t be going through this now. To expect that he has changed somehow and is now going to treat you civilly is unreasonable, you are setting yourself up to be disappointed every time you have an interaction with him.

You are starting your new life without him; whether you made the decision to end it or he did makes no difference. To ask yourself or others, “Why does he have to keep hurting me?” The answer is, “Because we let him.” You may think, “How is MY fault he is always late picking up our child?” “How is it MY fault he never sends decent clothes with her when she comes to stay with me?” “How is it MY fault he always has to tell me how happy he is with his new woman, I don’t ask him”.

It’s your fault because you are expecting him not to, you know he is incapable of feeling compassion, guilt or showing common decency. You know he loves to push your buttons and get a reaction, so stop expecting anything different. He hurts you because he can; plain and simple.

If you don’t have children then it should be easy, you avoid all contact with him/her. There is no need to have contact, unless you are wanting to stay a victim.

What is the definition of insanity? Doing the same thing over and over and expecting a different result.

I remember shortly after JC and I split I let Kato run loose in a field I thought was totally fenced. Well, he disappeared almost instantly and would not come. He never did come when I called, JC always would have to call him and then Kato would run straight to me. I didn’t panic at first, Kato usually came back within a 1/2 hour but when an hour passed and there was no sign of him and I had walked the whole field I started to panic. I walked back to the truck thinking he might have gone back there and was waiting for me. When he wasn’t there then I panicked that maybe he had come back to the field, saw I wasn’t there and gone looking for me. I was a basket case running back and forth crying, cars were stopping to see if I was ok and I called JC. Of course he didn’t answer so I tried texting, I knew he lived close by and ended up begging him to come help me find Kato. He never responded.

I eventually got my truck, drove to the field, parked facing the field and decided I would spend the night there if need be; I was not leaving without my little buddy. It was getting dark and every few minutes I could hear some businesses alarm going off, then it would quit and 5-10 minutes later it would sound again. I was so angry with JC for not coming and helping me, would it have killed him to take 5 minutes to come and help me. I was thinking if I lose Kato it will be JC’s fault because he could have come and called; he could have even brought “her” for all I cared I just wanted Kato. Then I heard the sound of his choker chain and thought I was imagining things; I got out of the truck and Kato came from behind the truck, ran around the front, and practically bowled me over trying to scramble into the truck. His whole body was wagging and he was panting hard. We hugged for the longest time with me admonishing him the whole time. He had to have walked right up the busiest street in the area because it was behind me. The alarm I had been hearing must have been him stuck in some businesses yard and every time he tried to get out he set off the alarm. He was obviously just as happy to see me as I was to see him.

Did he learn any lessons from that, no; he still buggers off and doesn’t come when I call. Did I learn any lessons from it? Yes, I learned I couldn’t rely on JC any more.

That’s not to say I didn’t try once or twice more to get him to care but I am a slow learner when it comes to JC but eventually do learn and knew if I wanted him to stop disappointinG me and hurting me I had to stop setting myself up to be hurt. As much as it hurt that he had moved on, it was done; I had to accept it and move on myself. There was no way I was ever going to heal if I kept contacting him about seemingly important things that “only he could help me with”.

He probably handled it just the way he should have, in the end probably the kindest way he could have. If he would have come and brought her I would have been hurt, I would have felt needy and she would have pissed on her territory and had an attitude. It would not have been good for me and it ended with me solving my own problem without the help of JC. What I had really wanted besides help getting Kato was; I wanted JC to care, I wanted to be important to him, I wanted him to talk to me like he used to talk to his ex’s when I was with him. I wanted her to feel insecure like I had when he used to talk to his ex.
What I really wanted was I wanted him to still love me, even though in my head I knew it was for the best he was gone, I didn’t want to let go.

Yes he hurt me, he treated me horribly, he cheated on me, sabotaged my business, and lied about everything and I had every right to be hurt over those things, but they were in the past. He had hurt me and then even though he did it in the most cruel way possible he did the kindest thing and discarded me. I knew the only way he could keep hurting me was if I let him.

What we have to remember is; it’s done, its over, he is not going to change and he has done you a favor by moving on. Accept it and stop allowing him to hurt you. From this day forward you are responsible for your own happiness. You always have been. You always have a choice. Like he said to me that day; “And what did you do?” …………. I stayed. The truth hurts.

Yes I hurt because he lied and cheated and he had no reason to ever hit me and I thought I couldn’t leave without money and a place to go but I still had a choice because in the end I did leave with nothing and its been hard but I have survived for 2 full years and will continue to survive because I am reliant on myself, I made a choice; the only healthy one I could make. I took back my control and stopped letting him hurt me.

We may tell ourselves that we don’t want them back, we just want them to treat us with respect and not purposely hurt us. Listen to yourself, why on earth is he going to treat you with respect now when he never did before? You are lucky if you get indifference from him, you don’t want him to be nice; that would mean he has changed and then you’ll want him because now he is changed. You want him to admit he hurt you, that would mean he’s changed because the man you lived with for however long never admitted any blame. You can’t have it, it would require him changing; do you want him to change now; after he left you (or you left him). IF he did change do you now want to be his buddy? Where is it going to get you. Exactly what would you get from him giving you an apology and admitting to everything he did wrong, would you be happy to know the new woman is getting the man you always wanted? What excuse can he give you for hurting you that is going to make it all better? No matter what he says it is going to hurt even if he isn’t trying to. Personally I am much happier knowing JC hasn’t changed than thinking he is all the things I ever wanted with some other woman. And even if he HAD changed, he still doesn’t want us. You know I am damn thankful he hasn’t changed because then I can move on knowing my only fault in the whole relationship was staying too long, that he is what he is and be thankful he is her problem now not mine.

He can not mend your heart so stop trying to get the impossible. But he hurt you. Yes he DID hurt you he is not “hurting” you any more, from this day forward whether he hurts you or not is totally within your control. You can remain a victim or you can deal with the pain, take the time and steps to heal, demand respect instead of ask for it next time and set boundaries that you stick to. Learn from the relationship how to respect yourself in such a way that you don’t allow anyone to disrespect you ever again.

If you have children, stop giving up your power, don’t expect him to call you if the teacher has an issue with your child. Go into the school, make an appointment to speak with all your child’s teachers and explain the situation as briefly as possible and get her/him to call you directly. Tell them you want a copy of the report cards, if you want have all your child school work photo copied and sent to you. You have that right. Don’t rely on him to keep you informed; you know they will abuse any power you give them.
As much as we all like to be flexible, don’t give them an inch, they have their days to have the child and it would be great if you both could be flexible on when you have the child(ren) but you know as well as I do. You will be flexible and he won’t appreciate it, and he won’t do the same for you and he will still try to make you out to be a lousy parent. So adhere to the child custody agreement to the letter, then there is no arguing, no hurt feelings, no misunderstandings. If he never sends clean and decent clothes with the kids, go to a second hand store and buy a couple of outfits that stay at your house. All that needs to be said to the child is that it makes it easier for them when they pack. No need to tell them its because he/she is playing games and refuses to send decent clothes.

If he/she doesn’t show up or is consistently late, allow a time limit; say one hour; if they are not there you carry on with your day. Now if it is to drop off your child to you or you go to get the child and they aren’t there, wait a reasonable time, try to call once, and then report it to the appropriate authority. Have it all witnessed and noted. No point in getting angry, that will prove he can push your buttons. Be calm, rational and by the book. Either he will follow the rules or he will lose custody of the child, there need not be any discussion about it, no warning; “if you don’t do this I will do that”. The judge laid out the rules, you both abide by them and it is cut and dried. You do not have to deal with him any more, just have a pen and paper handy to note times and days so you can report back to the judge.

The days of being a door mat are behind you. You won’t be immediately pain free but you will find the more control you retain and not hand over to the N the happier you are and the easier it is to deal with him because he won’t be able to upset you. He will appear childish and almost humorous instead of evil and manipulative.

That’s it for today. I must get out of here and go to work! I don’t start my new job until the new year so I have 3 more weeks to wait. That’s ok its slow through Christmas unless you work in retail so I will wait until the new year. I hear from a reliable source the world isn’t going to end on Dec 21st.



19 thoughts on “Releasing The Hurt

  1. Thanks for this, Carrie. I think part of the reason the people in the neighborhood being so kind affected me so deeply, was because after having my N tell me what a bad person I am and how I ruined his life for so long, it was really nice to have people reaffirm that I was the kind of person I knew I had been all along. I let him take that away from me. Having those people treat me as though I am important to them and show me that they knew that I am a good, worthwhile person…well, it gave that back to me in some sense. You are right- it is up to me from now on whether I ever give him the power to diminish me again. I think all of this makes me want to be a better person to other people. I know that seems odd, but I feel like when I was with him, he made it obvious that my kindness was seen as a weakness. I feel like I had to hide that part of me a little bit. It wasn’t until after I ended things, that I was able to become closer to those neighbors. Don’t get me wrong, I will remain very guarded and will have trust issues for a long time, but I do want to be openly kind if I feel it. I can’t possibly see that kindness is a weakness.
    It’s all about taking back our power, right? It doesn’t make it hurt less, but helps us regain our power and hopefully- our sense of self.
    I have to admit, reading about Kato…..Oh how I wish I still had my puppy by my side. This would be a lot easier with my furry buddy. There is nothing I can do. I deeply hope that I can get another puppy within the next year. The puppy would not be a replacement by any means, but it is something that I need badly.


    1. Twisted, I felt a little bit like you did with the neighbors, not because me being kind was a problem with JC, he fed off of it. He liked it when I helped the neighbors because it reflected well on him. He took advantage of it actually. We had a few neighbors down on their luck, if someone asked to bum a smoke JC would say go ask Carrie, she’ll make you some. He bought his by the pack I rolled mine and was only allowed to buy so much so when I was out I had to go with out. His smokes would be right there but he would send them to me. The people wouldn’t realize that me giving them smokes meant I would go without, they assumed if JC and I lived together meant we shared costs. I bought the food and if someone was hungry they knew to come to our house and I’d give them whatever we had, I remember once JC came home and told me one of the guys was without food so I packed up 1/2 of everything we had and he took it over. I didn’t mind, we managed to make it through without it (I was a pretty good cook and could make a meal out of practically nothing) and I knew he took the credit. I preferred it that way because I was a little shy.

      I got so that I hid from the neighbors because they were always complaining about JC, either he’d have kept them awake all night banging away in his shop, or it was his mess in the back, or he screwed someone on a deal and when ever I walked out the door they would come and talk to me about it. If I said anything to JC he was mad at me and of course they all thought I should have some control over him. Haha yeah right!

      I have always been very kind to people, I like doing nice things for people but I have gotten more so since being with him. I think its because I know now what a difference a small kindness can make in a person’s life. I also think God let’s us know who is really needy, I have a good story to go along with that but I’ll make a post about it. But now if I see someone in need I give whatever God tells me to. I know that sounds strange but I don’t know how to describe it. Like this week I was at the laundromat. The young guy who owns it took it over when his dad died; I don’t think he especially likes the job. He is a young guy with two wee children 2 & 6, this week when I was in there they were decorating the landromat for Christmas and had his mom, wife and 2 kids there and they were eating chinese food for supper. The kids were hyper and running around and there were customers trying to do laundry. It was chaotic and I could tell he was stressing out. His mom was too and apologized to me for the chaos. I laughed and told her there was a day I had 5 kids and that’s what christmas is all about and not to worry about it. But there was tension in the air. Finally he told his wife to take the kids home, he’d finish cleaning and lock up and then come home. She even forgot her purse in the confusion.

      I had a Christmas arrangement on the back of my truck that I made for a customer that I hadn’t delivered that day and was going to drop off the next day but something was telling me to give it to them. I argued with myself that I didn’t have time to make another one in the morning and they wouldn’t want it. But it nagged at me the whole night so when I was leaving I took it off the truck and quietly put it just inside the door, hoping they wouldn’t see me do it. But he saw me and asked, “What’s that?” And I said “Merry Christmas”. I was almost back at my truck when his mom came around the corner, I hadn’t seen her having a smoke outside. She had a great big smile and asked who that was for. I just said again, “Merry Christmas”. I could tell she was tickled pink and I felt great about doing it. I don’t know why I felt so strongly that I should give it to them, I’ll never know for sure what it meant to them. But I know I was supposed to do it, so I did. Maybe they needed to be reminded what Christmas is all about.

      I think for me being kind to others helps me cope with my life, I may not have much but I can still brighten someone’s day. I have had days I wanted to die but someone said Hi or smiled at me or gave me a compliment and it made my day. We never know what someone is dealing with. Like the neighbors being nice to you, I bet now if you see someone hurting you will make sure to let them know you care because you know how it feels.

      I used to be afraid to reach out to people for fear I’d insult them or they would reject me. I’m not any more, if I give someone money I will say, “I don’t want to offend you but can I give you $10? They’ve never turned me down. I’ve bought supper for 3 homeless people and their dog, drove home and gotten a bunch of canned goods for a pregnant woman who’s husband was begging for money. Whatever strikes me, it seems bizarre sometimes but they always take it and are thankful.


      1. It’s amazing that your neighbors were so aware of what JC was like. My “J” hides who he really is from everyone. He is very conscious about what little tidbits of himself he gives out. Like I said before, the fact that the neighbors thought of him as anything other than polite and in fact thought he was difficult and cold (in addition to polite), was a complete shock to me. I thought he hid it well. Yes, he loved that the neighbors and his family and friends liked me and thought I was a good person- I made him look good. But, he didn’t really respect me doing anything extra for him or anyone else.

        It’s true- Those neighbors will never know how much their kindness means to me. You will never know how much the Christmas plant meant to that family or how the many other kind things you have done for others have made a difference to them. I am a lot like you- although I don’t come off as shy necessarily to people, deep down I kind of am. When I do something nice for someone, I don’t always like it to be obvious that it was me that did it. I do like the feeling of knowing that something I say or do for someone may brighten their day or make some sort of a difference in their life- just like those neighbors did for me. You just never know what something that seems insignificant to you could mean to someone else.

        You really are a kind heart, Carrie, The world is a better place just for having people like you in it:)


  2. Thanks Carrie I needed that! I have been definitely trying to find humor in his evil and manipulative ways. It’s hard because I do have a child with him and have to see him. Just when I think he is trying to be nice or as he always projects onto me “just be civil” I have to think, this is coming from a guy who always called me crazy when I had feelings, never told me I was beautiful but always told me when something didn’t look good on me, manipulated me to get others to do what he wanted, isolated me from my friends and family he couldn’t manipulate. Has he changed, no….is he going to therapy to work on his faults, no because in his eyes he doesn’t have any faults! It has been a year and a half for me and I still get down on myself thinking “Am I the narcissist”? I have those thoughts every day then I have to think to myself “you did everything you could to try and make him happy and nothing was ever good enough”! I still get upset about the other woman and that she is getting something from him that I couldn’t get but I have to remind myself that if you jump right into another relationship and not work on yourself you will do the same things over! It’s a sick cycle! Not beating myself up is a one day at a time challenge….he is being nice now by offering to let me see my daughter more than the judge ordered but I am positive this will not stay like that long! He is putting on a front to try and convince me he has changed and he cares that I see my child but what did he do the past 9 months I couldn’t see her? He threw me under the bus and called me names when I called her. I have to remember the ugly times and not focus on what was the “false” good times!


    1. Rstrtluv, it took me a full two years to get to the point where I no longer doubt myself or think she is getting everything and more than what I wanted.

      I read something once that said when they leave one relationship they take on the personality of the person they just dumped. Which made a lot of sense to me. All of a sudden JC was so law abiding, his car was in my name and the insurance had run out and I wanted him to take it out of my name because I knew he was driving it. But he emailed me and said,”I would never think if driving without insurance” I thought who does he think he is talking to? He gave up the internet, (or so he said), he didn’t want to upset her by seeing me but when we were together he told me I was over reacting when he slept at his ex’s and he even had the gall to say, “You wouldn’t like either if it was you” OMG!!! How could he even say it with a straight face??!!

      It made it so much harder for me to move on. I know now he hasn’t changed and I am sure she is going through her own hell with him. Starting to catch him in lies, puzzle pieces are missing, money is missing, he’s on job 12 in 2 years.

      Be patient with yourself and what helped me was trying to think of what I could have done different. The compromises I made did no good, I did every thing I possibly could. I conceded on major things like fidelity and none of it did any good. When I tried to think of something I could have done more or differently, there was nothing, he was never happy. if I would have stopped being upset when he didn’t come home at night would that have helped? I couldn’t live like that and be happy. Given up my job but then he wanted me to be self supporting so that was impossible. Go without food and not complain when he is eating take out? I realized I had no choice, I couldn’t continue to live like that, and he wasn’t happy if I didn’t cry and get angry. There was no winning with him. Even if he is happy with the new woman, he wasn’t happy with me and I was miserable being treated like dirt so there is only one choice and that is to carry on best we can.


  3. Thank you! I feel validated every time I read what you write! I went no contact naturally (without knowing about these kinds of people) after I kicked him out. He did so many awful and extremely hurtful things especially in the last year and VERY VERY bad things the last 2 months. I was terrified every time my phone rang or he wanted to come over! For 2 years he called for various reasons. We have 3 kids together, one is still a minor. He never called about them. He tried to fight my oldest child when she confronted him, he called my middle child maybe 6 times and my minor son, he goes to his basketball games but hasnt spent one minute with him in over 2 years!!! Why would he go to the games??? My middle child was in the Colorado theatre shooting and her fiance was murdered saving her life! It has been so hard. He sends her the most bizarre messages via text. It is obvious he doesnt know how to be human. How did I not know this for the 30 years I was with him, and how is it that I still think Im the one with problems? I think maybe he treats my kids bad cause of something I may have done. Am I crazy?? Im rambling….so confused!


    1. Joann, thank you so much I am so glad you find stuff I write useful!!

      Your poor daughter!! She must be so terribly traumatized !! How awful for both of you!! How did you find out what had happened? What a great young man! How terribly sad! I am so sorry.

      Listen to me!! You have done nothing to deserve being abused and neither does your daughter. Even IF you had done something to piss him off only a narcissist would take it out on the kids, because they are sick like that. He might have something in his head where he feels justified to be angry but you know what? Nothing would justify taking it out on the kids.

      Just continue being you, being a great mom, being the sensitive caring person you are and hold your head high. You will have these waves of self doubt, I still get them occasionally but they pass quickly now because I can never justify the way he treated me. I used to say to JC, ” find me a person, any person you like, a bum off the street, your best friend and tell them exactly how you treat me and if they say you are right i will accept it and try to change. Until then I am not taking your word for it that I am wrong to be upset.”

      Of course he never did, because he knew he was wrong, but he chose to do it anyway. That’s what makes them soul sucking vampires.

      Be strong, believe in yourself!!


  4. honestly Carrie you are so wise, thats the gift you got for relying on yourself in the end and building compassion for those who went through the same horror. It is a fearsome power and yet gentle. I have it too now and he is like an ant on my pavement. keep keeping on! D


    1. Dee, thank you!! I don’t know what it is; I think it comes from living through what you never thought you would have to, didn’t think you could, being stripped of “almost” every shred of dignity I had, and surviving.

      I would never go back to him, but I wouldn’t want to test my strength face to face, toe to toe with him. It could get ugly. I don’t think he could get to me any more but I prefer to not find out. He is a coward and cowards can be dangerous because they don’t have the guts to say it to your face and admit they were wrong. Only a coward works behind a person’s back and whittles away at their self esteem. Why I couldn’t see that before I don’t know. I guess I did see it because I was ashamed to admit I was dating him at times and I didn’t respect him for how he treated me and other people. Fear is not respect.

      If you can’t be proud to say, “I love that guy, that one right there!”, if you can’t say I love you to him for fear of rejection or ridicule, if you are afraid he’ll hit you, if you can never count on him being there for you, if he will make love to you and tell you he loves you and walk out the door and go to another woman. What have you got? A coward.

      Today, I have a hard time thinking of why I loved him. I hope this is the start of many more like it.

      You know I can even forgive him, not in a “let’s be friends” kinda way but in a “don’t want to waste my energy on hating him” kinda way.

      Thanks Dee, you are always so positive! A great addition to my little corner of the blogsphere.


  5. Hi! New reader here. This was an amazing post. I too keep having to remind myself that I am no longer being manipulated by my abuser; the days of being hurt are long gone, and I am grateful for that.
    Strength and peace,


    1. Welcome A, thank you for stopping by and taking the time to comment. I am glad you enjoyed the post. Please stop by again and if you have any insight or need to vent please feel free to comment any time.

      Strength and Peace to you also.
      We will get there!


  6. GREAT POST carrie, i totally needed that. had situation where i talked to my child and then talked to my husband “thinking only he can help me with this” and he was so nonchalant and didn’t care. I see now that the only reason i told him what had happened to me was that i wanted him to be concerned and he really wasn’t at all. It was a real eye opener. I realized what i did and why and must accept that he had deleted me from his life, but your post was so wonderful


    1. Julie, thank you!! I am glad it hit home for you today. Its hard to admit some times, I know it sure was for me, but when I did, the healing started.
      Thank you so much for commenting


  7. Im so glad you say they know what they do but do it anyway! I know my soon to ex not only knew but enjoyed every bit of the abuse! During the last discarding when I was in the most pain, I would catch him with a devil smirk on his face! I even said your enjoying this arent you? He never denied it! After 2 years, do you still question weather you were really abused? Is it still hard for you to understand the crazy making? I want to get to a point where I can move on and not think about it at all. In my first post you said that when you get with these predators at a young age you have no idea whats happening till its to late! I wanted to say thank you for that! I think about that every time I kick myself for staying for 30 years! You have no idea how much you have helped me! THANK YOU!!!!!!


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