He wanted to know everything about me. We sat at the bar at Cantina 76 and he made me feel so special. The conversation flowed so well and he asked me so many important questions. He really seemed like he wanted to know me.
He texted me constantly. Flirting, making jokes, and being so sweet. Such a nice change of pace from the depressing last year I had had.
He took me to the beach, caressing my face he leaned down to kiss me. Playing “love like crazy” on his phone, we danced in the surf as he held me close.
I was so emotionally overwhelmed and overjoyed at the same time.
He brought me red wine and chocolate truffles on Valentine’s Day while I cooked a beautiful meal for us to share together.
He sent me the song “What if’s” and said this reminded him of me.
He told me about his hopes and dreams. We talked about how we would parent and what it would be like if we were married.
Those first three months were heaven. He cared for me, spent every extra moment he had with me, held me, and listened to me. He even wrote me a sweet poem while I was away traveling.
But then I started to notice…
Why was he always angry at me? When I least expected it, out of the blue.
Then it happened again, and again.
We were out with a group and someone wanted to talk to me instead of him so he was mad at me for the rest of the night.
Randomly, he would just stop talking to me and give me the silent treatment. I would question him and come to find out he was mad about a little thing I said. Something stupid. Sometimes a joke but sometimes it was an opinion.
“Why didn’t I ask him for business advice?” was a regular argument. I didn’t want him to think I was using him, so I never really brought it up.
“Are you sure you’re really ready to move on?” Became a regular question about my widowhood. “What if you don’t really know?” He would get angry and ask me.
“That’s such a masculine thing to say.” He would tell me over and over, minutes after telling me how much he wasn’t attracted to masculine traits. He said it so much that before I knew it, the things I loved about myself – my indépendance, leadership, logical mind, sound reasoning, became things I hated and wanted to hide.
“Please be patient with me. Give me a little more time.” He would say when I wanted to move forward.
“You act like you know everything” he would say after I offered an opinion on something we were chatting about.
I slowly started noticing the manipulation and the lying and began calling him out every time. He didn’t tell me when he was flying out of town and specifically hid it from me. “I don’t need to tell you every detail of my life, that’s not the type of relationship I’m interested in having.” He would say after I asked him why it was such a big deal to tell me he was leaving. #controlissues
He would never apologize. He would listen to the way I felt and then spend the next half hour invalidating my feelings. I had no right to feel upset about anything and he would take no responsibility for the way his actions made me feel. Ever. It was all my fault for having any sort of expectations. What I observed as facts, were not really what had happened. #gaslighting
Every move was a calculated mind game.
I made him feel so insecure – my strength and strong personality made him feel inadequate which made him work even harder to tear me down.
I lived in a state of stress. When was he going to get mad at me next? And over what stupid thing? He got mad at me once for holding his hand at a concert, that only months before we had been in the same building on our first date where he grabbed my hand on his own! But now suddenly it was an issue, he didn’t believe in PDA.
He liked the way he felt when I was out with him, but he didn’t like the way I made him feel when I opened my mouth to talk.
Sadly, I still cared. I still wanted the best for him even though I knew it wasn’t going to be me. We sat in my living room one night where I told him, “There are fundamental reasons why we can’t be together.” But hell hath no fury like a narcissistic sociopath who has been rejected.