Back Again I See

Im back

Hi, so you are back again; it’s been awhile, but I have been expecting you. How did I know you would be back?  because you are like me; I did this for 6 years before I faced the truth. I hope you don’t do it as long as I did, that is why I started the blog, in hopes of saving some people precious time and more damage. But there is no shame in being a slow learner, you won’t hear me criticize you, that would be the pot calling the kettle black.

What happened this time? You caught him with another personal ad? or was it worse, you caught him with another woman. Or did he stay out all night or disappear for a few days and refuse to answer his phone? Or did you plan for days to have a talk with him about something, plan your words ever so carefully only for him to blow up at you and call you a selfish, paranoid bitch and blame you for everything and a simple conversation ended with him storming out the door as he spit out that it was over, YOU really did it this time!! He wants out!!

I know

It has been many years now for me, but I remember those days well. Oh boy do I! Initially I would be so angry I would be relieved he was gone, but it wouldn’t take long and his words would sting, the tears would sting my eyes and the self doubt would start. I would start to shake, I would go over my words, how had such a well planned conversation turned so ugly, how could he misunderstand what I was saying and twist my words like that. I never even got out what I wanted to say and he had me so confused and flustered I stumbled over my words and forgot everything I wanted to say. I hadn’t been angry, I was trying to figure out how to make things better and next thing I knew he was screaming at me and I was crying and screaming back and it all got so out of control and hate filled. I said things I didn’t mean and he wouldn’t stop badgering me and I lost it. I never used to lose it like that, I have always been calm and rational; why do I lose control like that with him?

I would try to call him, he wouldn’t answer, I would panic, maybe this time he really meant it, maybe this time it really was over. I would pace the floor, unable to eat, work, sleep, needing to talk to him, to fix things, to make it right again, have him love me again. But he wouldn’t answer his phone and I couldn’t talk to anyone about it, everyone was sick of hearing about it and I always went back.

I would run to the internet. There weren’t near as many sites back then but I would devour any information I could find, spending hours confirming it wasn’t me. It was easy because he fit every description of a narcissist I read, I would print out the list of traits and even highlight sections with yellow, orange, and green nodding my head in agreement, even talking to myself out loud, “Omg! that is US!! I would print off that section and reread it over and over. It comforted me, I could tell myself I was better off without him. Sometimes I would even comment, describing how cruel he was and everyone would tell me no contact was the only way to get over him. I would tell myself, right! no contact! I never want to talk to him again! He’s an asshole, I don’t need him, he is sick, he is a narcissist!! look at all the traits you ticked off the list that he has!! You are SO much better off without him. I could keep it up for a few days, until the phone rang and I would jump 3 feet in the air and pray it was him. I answer and be cool, I was just going to see what he wanted, what lies he was going to tell me this time. I knew what he was now and I could be strong.

But he would be using his sweet voice, call me “Baby”, and ask how I was. He would say he missed me, i would say, “You really hurt me this time James.” and he would say he was so sorry, and in a whispered voice say he loved me. To hear those words would be like cooling salve on a burn, my resolve would leave me, I could feel the wave of relief wash over me, he still loved me.

He would ask to come over and I would try to be strong but I knew the battle was lost, all I wanted was to make love to him and we would be back together. The highlighted lists would be put away, the websites forgotten and I would convince myself that, “Yes, he had a lot of the traits but he would never cheat on me, we were different; we had a special love, stronger than what those other women had with their men. They don’t understand because they have never loved like this. When two people love each other as much as James and I love each other, it is stronger than both of you, you don’t just walk away from a love like that. And I knew, when I looked in his eyes, when his mouth was on mine and his strong hand held mine, when he picked me up and packed me into the bedroom; that I could never love anyone like I loved him and I knew he felt the same. It scared him, that is why he tried to sabotage it, it was so intense it was almost more than either one of us could handle. But I was not giving up on him, on our love.

I even went years not looking on the net, I totally forgot about him being a narcissist because for one, he could be really sweet at times, I knew he loved me and I thought it was his fear of getting hurt that made him act the way he did. He went years without hitting me also, I still didn’t know at that time what gas lighting was or that someone can destroy your soul and never touch you physically. I still thought my truck breaking down was God’s way of keeping us together. And there was always some good reason to stay until the present trauma or drama calmed down. I remember praying to God, more like bargaining with God, “If you let him get off this time (when he was caught with all the stolen cars) I will stay with him.” He got off. Or I would pray that God would open James heart and eyes and know how much I loved him and he would come and apologize. Or I would ask for a sign telling what to do and my truck would break down or James would get sick or injured and I would nurse him back to health.

I convinced myself that he would never really do anything about the personal ads, he just needed to know he could get another woman if he wanted to, he was just afraid that I might leave him. So I set about showing him how much I loved him, whether he said it back or not, I would say I love you. I would vow to not get angry and only see the good things he did, praise him when he did well and be grateful, appreciative, and show him how much I loved him. I didn’t need him to come to bed every single night, I told him even 3 nights a week would make me happy. Then of course he made sure he didn’t come to bed. God forbid Carrie would be happy!! I paid my own way for everything and even paid his way for most things and if he needed money I gave it freely, money had always been an issue with us and I was not going to allow it to drive a wedge between us. I hadn’t worked for a couple of years and I had been reliant on him, once I started hauling scrap I made sure to not be a burden on him and the last two years I went too far the other way, paying for everything and he was stealing off my truck but I told myself we were a couple, what was mine was his and I shouldn’t worry about only my end of things. I told myself that when it came time that I needed help he would come through. OK, ok I already said I was in denial, stop laughing!!

I did not say anything bad about him to anyone, I know how a person can get in a bad habit of finding fault with a partner, it becomes habit to bitch about them, and I had decided to stick it out, no point in bitching about him. I loved him warts and all and I had given up fighting it. I was going to love him to the best of my ability and do everything I could to prove how much I loved him whether he accepted it or not. It was all I could do, I had tried leaving, I had tried reasoning with him, explaining, getting angry, and none of it had worked so I gave myself permission to just love him with every fibre of my being. It felt good to love someone that much, so much that you stopped demanding respect, stop worrying about whether you were getting equal back, to just love someone totally without reservation or expectations, to just accept each day and what he gave me that day. But it was killing me and he didn’t appreciate it, he loathed me for it. it made him sick, the more i loved unconditionally the more he hated me and the looked at me with hatred in his eyes. The more he rubbed my nose in the fact that he had other women.

And that is when he said it was over and I knew he meant it, I knew in my gut it was truly over and I left. a shell of the person I had once been. And I ran back to the internet, dug out those old highlighted lists and consoled myself with the fact that he was a narcissist. And this time he had all the traits, he had cheated on me, we didn’t have anything special, our love wasn’t stronger than those other couples. All victims of an N are the same, we all go through the same denial, magical thinking, searching for answers and not liking the answers we find.

This might not be the time you face the truth, you might have to do this a few more times, hey! I totally understand and don’t judge you for it. Just know you are always welcome back, we are here waiting, and when you really face the truth we will give you a virtual shoulder to cry on and hand to hold.

But, from one slow learner to another; get out sooner than later; please. And when you are thinking about going back; come back here I’ll be waiting.


20 thoughts on “Back Again I See

  1. Yes I am back again like you said trying to read all that I can on what I thought was domestic abuse .. then I discover I may have been in a relationship with a Narcissist .. HELP!


    1. SuzieQ welcome back!! SuzieQ was the pet name everyone called me when I was a kid.
      Keep reading suzieQ I know you are an emotional mess and hanging by a thread, we have all been there,believe me and we have all survived and we all make it to the other side. There is a lot of info here on getting through those first few months. I am in the process of trying to organize the blog again but if you click on the Categorys in the sidebar on the right a drop down list of categories with appear and there are over 190 posts on recovering after a narcissist, posts on aftermath of being with a narcissist, self improvement and self discovery.
      learn all that you can so you know what you are dealing with and what you are feeling is normal . There is a real withdrawal after leaving them, it is literally an addiction we have to break one hour at a time. Come to the support forum any time if you just need to talk to someone.
      We all care you are not alone


      1. Thank you for your support Carrie.. I’ve got through another week almost… but not without crying and feeling empty. For the first few months my thoughts were taken up with trying to find an apartment and getting some furniture to start over again. I left my beautiful B.C. to get far away from my common-law husband so that I wouldn’t be tempted to go back. I moved back to another province where I grew up to be near my family for support. This is the third attempt in a 15 yr. relationship. I left all that I loved behind me. My home.. my dog.. my friends and the support of my domestic abuse woman’s group. The label they gave it was domestic abuse.. the emotional abuse.. the filthy names he would call me when he was angry .. the long periods of not speaking to me.. I was always being punished for something.. he was always angry and distant..I was afraid to bring up topics for discussion because he had a bad temper. He showered our dog with love and affection but had nothing to give me. He knew what the dog needed instinctively but never seemed to know or care what I needed from him or cared to know. All I wanted from him was to love me and show me some affection .. to respect me . He felt he was showing his love for me by supplying me with a nice home and furnishings and the best of everything. I had a small income but what I had I contributed.. but he devalued my contribution and told me we have what we have because HE worked for it. Everything was in his name. Whenever I didn’t do as I was told he would tell me to pack up my things and get out of his house. He would throw suitcases at me and tell me to get packing and then when I did leave he would beg me to come back.. crying that I was his soul mate and that he wanted to die without me.. that he was sorry. I was such a fool to trust that things would be different and I went back. I didn’t know what was wrong with this man and why he acted this way and why he was never happy. He was wonderful when we first met. He swept me off my feet and we started to live together after only three months of knowing him. There where red flags but I brushed them aside because I was so in love with him. He caused problems between me and my daughter and she wouldn’t speak to me for a few years because of him. But I was still so in love.. what was the matter with me? Now I start trying to find answers to what is wrong with him and it comes up that he could be a N.. I still am not sure because he was not out running around with other woman.. he was always home.Yes he had started to drink way too much . Yes he did have an addiction to porn and gambling on line.. It always made me feel like he was not satisfied with me because he was so interested in looking at other woman on the computer. I kept my shape over the years and am still an attractive woman.. no I did not have big boobs like the ones he can’t keep his eyes off of. It made me feel like I was lacking in some way. I loved having sex with him and was always a giving and loving partner. I’ve always put him first and tried my hardest to please him in every way in our life. It was during my last months living with him and going to counseling so that I could hold myself together because of all the shit that he was putting me through.. that I said to him ..I realized that I loved him more then I love myself.. his answer to that was “What’s wrong with that” Now that I have left him I feel so stupid. Now that I am in my own apartment and alone I feel so empty and I am now crying most days. I held it in for so long and it won’t seem to stop now. I didn’t miss him before. When I thought about him I felt numb before.. I missed my home.. my dog.. my friends and the familiarity and comfort of the area I loved and lived in with him.. but not him. I was so hurt and humiliated by the last two confrontations with him before I left that is all I could think of. Now I miss him and want to go home so much but know that if I do nothing will change and it will only get worse because he knows he can get away with disrespecting me and hurting me and I always come back. Is this man a N? I think he is. And I feel like a fool for loving him. I can not go back ever again.. I pray for my life to change and that God will give me the strength to get me through these feelings to move on with my life and find peace and happiness.. there is a part of me that has left my being and I do not feel whole.. I feel so very broken.. I just want this pain in my heart to go away.. Today has been my worse.. I am alone I know no one where I am living .. I am in a strange city.. I hardly see my daughter because she is working two jobs and is in a relationship with a very needy man.. I know this letter is really long but can’t seem to stop talking.. There is so much more to tell and I’ve kept it a secret for so long. Thanks for listening.. guess I will just say goodnight.


        1. SuzzyQ I am so sorry for taking so long to reply! I know exactly how you feel. At first it is easier because you are doing what you have to do, getting a place to live etc but eventually you end up alone with your thoughts and it is overwhelming. While with the N we learned to shut down a lot of our feelings, it was just too painful and we got sick of being told all we did was cry and complain. I used to mark it in my journal, “I didn’t cry today, I didn’t get angry with James today” because he used to say that every single day I cried or complained. He still said I did even when I knew I hadn’t they are never happy, nothing you did or would do would ever be enough.

          You have ever right to cry, let those tears flow, they are healing and washing away the toxic pain you have been packing too long. You can’t expect to be fine after 15 years of abuse. Allow yourself time to grieve, it is normal and healthy. Yes you are going to miss him, they weren’t all bad, that is what kept us there and why we always went back; because we believed in the good part of them. But now you know the truth and you have a lot of healing to do, be patient with yourself.

          There are many articles/posts on here on healing and crying, retraining your brain, I encourage you to read as much as you can. I used meditation tapes, I slept on the couch instead of the bed for 2 years, what ever it takes to get you through. I used to give myself a time every day to cry, before I put my makeup on and then I would head out to work and cry all the way home. Do you work? if not then try to find something else to do even for a few hours a day. Sitting around the house all day with nothing else to occupy your mind can drive you crazy, getting out and seeing other people, even if for a walk. What about getting another dog. I know my Kato was my saving grace, I had to take him for a walk and he was such good company.

          Don’t worry about writing long messages here, no one minds, it helps to get it out.

          I used to feel like I was a puzzle that someone had thrown on the ground, just a bunch of broken pieces and i didn;t even know where to start to put myself back together. Don’t worry about doing it all at once. take it one day at a time , one hour at a time. Use the search feature and look up “recovering” “self discovery” “self improvement” so many posts that cover how I healed and what worked for me and others.

          you will survive this, give yourself time, it does get easier.
          I am here, even if slow sometimes and I do care.


  2. Carrie!!! Thank you for your time and articles! I’m stuck in this holding place right now; I keep praying for praying for peace and strength to not go back. Ive managed to move him out of the house, not speak for days, but he has come to my job. We have a child, but the court gave me full custody. I know he is a narcisst, but at times I believe he has multiple personalities. Just like you, I am a successful, own my home and have been completely independent for as long as I can remember. How could this happen I continue to ask myself. I’ve tried to create boundaries, but he just does what he wants. How can I take control of the situation, without going back. To many he is seen as great, and in public he is, but he has changed me to my core. I’m indecisive, scared and still in love with him. Why? And how can I stop?


    1. Dazed and Confused, I was sure I had replied to your comment but I don’t see it here. So now I am confused. LOL
      I can’t possibly answer your question in one simple comment, there are so many posts on here about no contact, retraining your brain, setting boundaries. I encourage you to use the “Categories” drop down list in the sidebar and read some of the posts in “Recovering after leaving a narcissist” “no contact” and “Self discovery and Self improvement” I think you will find some useful information there.
      I used to think James had multiple personalities also, i could even see him change from one to the next, it is like they have two personalities. But does it matter? narcissist, multiple personalities, they are toxic and that is all you need to know. YOU can not save them or change them no matter what they are; you can only change yourself and you are the only healthy parent your child has. you have to do what is right for you and most importantly what is best for your child and growing up in a home where one parent is a narcissist and the other one is an emotional basket case in not what is best for any child. Your child needs you to get healthy, set an example of respecting yourself and how to love others in a healthy way.
      Why is it so hard to break away? for one thing you have been brain washed and have to reprogram your brain. (check out categories or use the search feature)
      As for setting boundaries; you say you have tried to set boundaries. With normal people you can usually set a boundary and they will abide by it. But even with normal people especially children (as you will come to realize as your child grow older) will push your boundaries to see how far they can go. A narcissist has no respect for anyone’s boundaries they consider it a challenge when they are told, “you can not do this or that.” We all have to stop “asking” for people to respect us and “demanding” to be respected. When you set a boundary, there has to be some consequence when someone does not respect that boundary or it is not a boundary at all.
      I used to say to james all the time that I expected honesty and faithfulness from any man I was involved with. I set a boundary. BUT he screwed around our whole relationship. for 10 years I kept voicing my boundary, honesty and faithfulness and for 10 years he disrespected my boundary. “Why does he keep hurting me?” I wailed. “I keep telling him what I expect and what I will not tolerate.” Then I thought, But wait a minute, what you won’t tolerate? but you have been tolerating it for 10 years, Your ex has never respected your boundaries, what makes you think he is going to start now?
      You have to set clear boundaries and stick to them, not be wishy washy, compromise them, explain them time and time again, no these are the boundaries and if you do not respect my boundaries this will be the consequence and then follow through. Boundaries are only good if you defend them.
      You have to tell him, “Do not show up at my work, I will not talk to you and I have told everyone at work if they see you at my work to call the police. It is harassment and and I will get a restraining order.” and then follow through. If he chooses to not listen to you, then there are consequences to his actions, you have to make him accountable for his actions. Or he will never respect any rules you set with your child etc.
      You are expecting normal behavior from a sick person, it is never going to happen. You have to face the fact that he is sick, toxic and he is never going to do the right thing. It is up to you to take control of you and your son’s life because if you don’t, the N will continue to cause discord the rest of your life.
      you do not have to stop loving him, love him all you want, just accept that you can’t have him in your life because he is toxic and you want to be happy and your son to be happy.
      I had to change where i did business because james kept showing up and he was engaged to another woman. They have no boundaries and respect no one elses.
      Good luck


  3. I think the one really good thing about all this, once you get it, really get what this person is all about, you wouldn’t have them back for anything! Fortunately, my ex cerebral narc just dumped me and that was as he sailed blissfully off into the sunset in La-la land with his newest victim! No hoovers, just stone, cold silence which is a good thing! He’s her problem now! Woo-hoo!

    His silence and leaving me at peace was something I didn’t understand at first…and in those early months I was so angry, just furious! I could have cheerfully killed him as he took up with Mrs. Moneybags without a backward glance at me. Nearly 5 years later, I’m not thinking about him that much. Oh, I have the occasional dream about him… It’s not romantic in nature…but it’s as my mind is still trying to connect all the dots on some level.

    Gone is the anger, gone is the pain! My passions have been reawakened in political activism! I have a purpose and a desire to do good in the world working to restore civil rights and bring healing to the disenfranchised among us who are struggling and in pain! People need me, and I can see how much good I am doing in arousing their passions to change things for the better!

    I’m slowly, at a snails pace reconnecting with my first love…it’s as if he knows instinctively he has to go slowly with me or I will run for the hills! No more will I allow any man to hurt or use me! Not happening! He’s a gentleman with me. and for that I’m willing to give us another chance after a 45 year absence apart. No longer teens, we have time to wait and see how it goes. Either way, I will be fine! I don’t need man, and can survive quite well without one, but some male companionship would be nice..I wouldn’t mind.

    Although, I have very little money, I am getting by! I make the most of what I have and don’t need to complain. I have enough, and that’s all anybody should need or want! Life is good!


    1. OnlyMe, you are doing it all right, slow and steady wins the race. you have your priorities straight and it is so nice to see someone who has recovered from a narc and found inner peace. That is what the counselor said to me the other day. I asked her if she could understand that even though my life is literally falling apart all around me, I have inner peace. She practically shouted “Yes!! that is what I try to attain with my client, inner peace so that no matter what is happening in your life, YOU are at peace.”
      and I think that is the best reward at the end of the struggle inner peace. once you have it, no one can ever devalue or bring you down again.


    1. So Sad I know I replied to you earlier I don’t know what happened to all my comments to people. Anyway thank you. I am complimented you feel my blog is worth sharing! By all means share away!!


  4. carrie i hope youre doing ok you are going through so much just to say i would never have him back early on when he first left me abandoned i would have jumped at giving it another try but he made it clear he didnt want me in his words i was a burden and a freeloader he wanted different women for different things as i could not give him what he wanted he stood at the bottom of my stairs i said you cant have it all he said i do want it all my way thats how it is i have continually been shocked at his behaviour blaming me for getting ill that i would never have him back never ever i know that now yes he is still hanging around he has stopped dating because he insulted all of his dates and they told him where to go he is giving mixed signals to me as always but i honestly can say this site has kept me strong when i have been a complete mess my health is bad but my mind is stronger than its ever been there is no way he is getting me back again im not sure he likes the newer me getting my mind back but thats how its staying i want to be as strong as i was before i met him i was only 20 now 49 long time ago but im doing it thankyou carrie and everyone here for all the support good and bad days to a future without their control xxx


    1. Kim you will be stronger than ever. I have seen a pattern among victims, the ones who struggle the most, are the ones who end up reaping the most reward at the end of the journey. The ones who really do a lot of soul searching and working on themselves end up finding an inner peace that transcends anything they ever thought possible.


  5. Isn’t it weird how they can’t stand to see you happy? They seem to get more of a kick out of making you miserable then they can blame you. Towards the end I had disengaged from his lies and boring word salad. Without realising I was using the gray rock method, I was making myself boring to him. And in doing that I’d found a kind of happiness where nothing he said or did could affect me. In fact, a friend remarked how much happier I was lately. I had been ill, recovering from injuries whenI was knocked down by a car so getting back to nearly normal was making me feel I had things to look forward to. Of course I didn’t know about OW then. I was happy to feel better, happy I was coping with him and I had made that same decision as you, Carrie. To simply love him.
    That was the precise moment he chose to tell me about his need for OW.
    They are together now. Living in the home he and I bought and furnished when I was so in love with him I left my home country, my job, my family and friends to be with him. For 3 months we have had no contact and he is deliberately keeping me homeless while he argues with his solicitor about paying what he owes me. In the meantime I depend on friends for somewhere to stay.
    But when I get my settlement, however long it takes, I will be happy. Happy to be away from him. Happy not to hear his lies. Happy just to be allowed to be me.
    Happy also that he will hate that I’m happy.
    Best wishes to you and all your followers. xxx


    1. Celia, the happiest I ever saw James was when we were fighting or if I was unhappy for whatever reason. He hated me being happy as much as he would bitch about me always being unhappy. near the end I had gotten so numb I did the grey rock thing myself without knowing what it was. I didn’t react to anything. His sister could not believe I wasn’t reacting to the shit he was pulling, but I knew there was no point. That was when he finally said it was over. When they can’t get a reaction, the game is over for them. The fun stops and they have to move on. Sick bastards! I hope your settlement comes through soon. You will be happy, no matter what happens because after being with a narc just “being” is enough to make a person happy. Congrats on 3 months no contact!! and thank you for commenting and showing people that there is life and happiness after the narc.
      Big hugs


  6. I have a question….. Do they always come back? Honestly after 6 months a part of me is in fear of the day he tries and the other part misses him. I can’t and will not go back. I almost physically died but I am scared that I will succumb to the “spell”!


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