Input needed on record-length "honeymoon"

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Whiteheron

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Re: Input needed on record-length "honeymoon"
« Reply #20 on: February 12, 2018, 09:24:17 PM »
His demeanor was disturbing too--jacked-up and excited and his eyes had a wild look in them. I learned to watch like a hawk for that look and literally run out of the room. I swear he was in an actual altered state!


But the oh-so-superior attitude continues. Maybe because of all the "eyes on him" as my therapist puts it. And also because once he slips, he endangers his saint act and stands to lose the inappropriate validation that he's getting.

I've seen this look before. Usually anything said by stbx while in this state is later denied. Almost like he dissociates when like this. 
You can't destroy me if I don't care.

Being able to survive it doesn't mean it was ever ok.

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Widdershins3

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Re: Input needed on record-length "honeymoon"
« Reply #21 on: February 13, 2018, 01:13:05 AM »
His demeanor was disturbing too--jacked-up and excited and his eyes had a wild look in them. I learned to watch like a hawk for that look and literally run out of the room. I swear he was in an actual altered state!


But the oh-so-superior attitude continues. Maybe because of all the "eyes on him" as my therapist puts it. And also because once he slips, he endangers his saint act and stands to lose the inappropriate validation that he's getting.

I've seen this look before. Usually anything said by stbx while in this state is later denied. Almost like he dissociates when like this.

Oh, my God--yes! That's what I've thought for years. I even thought for a while that it might be a sort of seizure when he rages. The times I've interrupted one, he's confused and looks and speaks exactly like someone coming out of a complex partial seizure. And denies every word he's just said.

These bizarre responses to the phone calls with the bromance are similar in that way, too: During one, I was so stunned by what he'd just said that I shouted at him. He seemed to snap out of a trance and when I asked him WTF he thought he was doing, saying what he'd just said to me, he looked surprised and immediately began backpedaling as fast as he could. He actually stammered out something about it being "a joke" and I really went after that. He panicked and stomped out of the room, but the look on his face was something to see: a mix of confusion, anger and fear. He was scared.

But how does talking to a friend put him into that state? It's not his usual classic narcissistic rages that he's been having for 35 years. Since he's had this particular bromance, he seems all excited to be saying whatever he says to me. It's the weirdest damn thing I've ever seen. The words don't sound like him at all and I've known from the first incident 9 months ago that they're straight from his "Great Friend's" mind, not from his.

But yes--dissociation is part of this. My therapist and I have talked about it at great length and I've read everything I can get my hands on and we can't find anything that really fits it.  I'm somewhat dissociative from abuse myself, so I'm very aware of the symptoms and his is not any of the usual forms it takes. How the trigger could be this jerk trash talking about me is beyond me. I've never heard of anything like it.
I certainly wasn't happy. Happiness has to do with reason, and only reason earns it. What I was given was the thing you can't earn, and can't keep, and often don't even recognize at the time; I mean joy.

Ursula K. LeGuin

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Rose1

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Re: Input needed on record-length "honeymoon"
« Reply #22 on: February 13, 2018, 03:59:42 AM »
I agree, something is ringing alarm bells. It's common for a woman to be abused verbally when her partner is cheating - something gives them permission to treat her badly. Something is off with the other guy too - who sits and listens to another man for hours speaking low voice - sounds like planning something or talking about something you aren't to hear - not good in both cases. Then your H comes off the phone and seems to have "permission" to verbally abuse you. This other guy might be leading some sort of double life too - nice on the outside and not so nice with your H. I wonder what they've been up to?
Exbpdh used to get this weird look too - once when I caught him with porn. Total introspective look, maybe daydreaming. He also got the totally black eyes which scared the crap out of me. Nothing behind them. Not sure if he was dissociating at this time since denial was his middle name, but it was really weird and usually a prelude to some verbal aggressiveness (occasional physical). Often accompanied by weird roaring. Total male display pattern like a baboon. (no pink butt). But really scary.
I actually think he was having some sort of episodes of temporal lobe epilepsy because he also said he couldn't remember but maybe I was looking for a reason for purely bad aggressive behaviour meant to scare into submission.
Take a great deal of care.

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Widdershins3

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Re: Input needed on record-length "honeymoon"
« Reply #23 on: February 13, 2018, 11:09:53 AM »
I agree, something is ringing alarm bells. It's common for a woman to be abused verbally when her partner is cheating - something gives them permission to treat her badly. Something is off with the other guy too - who sits and listens to another man for hours speaking low voice - sounds like planning something or talking about something you aren't to hear - not good in both cases. Then your H comes off the phone and seems to have "permission" to verbally abuse you. This other guy might be leading some sort of double life too - nice on the outside and not so nice with your H. I wonder what they've been up to?
Exbpdh used to get this weird look too - once when I caught him with porn. Total introspective look, maybe daydreaming. He also got the totally black eyes which scared the crap out of me. Nothing behind them. Not sure if he was dissociating at this time since denial was his middle name, but it was really weird and usually a prelude to some verbal aggressiveness (occasional physical). Often accompanied by weird roaring. Total male display pattern like a baboon. (no pink butt). But really scary.
I actually think he was having some sort of episodes of temporal lobe epilepsy because he also said he couldn't remember but maybe I was looking for a reason for purely bad aggressive behaviour meant to scare into submission.
Take a great deal of care.
I'm hypervigilant--pretty much always have been--and it's turned out to be a Good Thing personal safety-wise in this bizarre marriage. I too find it just *creepy* that he and his bromance buddy used to spend so much time on the phone almost whispering to each other about me. It's not that the last one didn't do everything in his power to try to break up our marriage, but they didn't do their nasty conversations about me where I'd be aware of them. I've wondered too what kind of person meddles in another man's marriage in such a weird way. And he's got an amazing knowledge of psychology and has taught my husband all sorts of terms he never used to know. 

There's a scholarly book I read a while back that speculates about possible epilepsy behind some abuse, but I can't find it at the moment. It's the only mention I've ever seen of it, outside of what you say above and a comment my best friend made several years ago.  But I was kind of surprised to find no mentions of dissociation in books on abuse...?

Denial, as you say, makes it very difficult to figure out what's going on. Is it amnesia from a seizure disorder or dissociative amnesia or plain old lying--first to himself and then to me and the world? Denial is kind of a mystery to me. My abusive mother did it occasionally, but for my husband, it's a way of life. I don't get how anyone could lie to themselves and not be aware of it on some level. My safety for my whole life has been dependent on being hyper aware and accurate about what was going on around me. So to me, denial is a very risky behavior--self-indulgent in the extreme.
I certainly wasn't happy. Happiness has to do with reason, and only reason earns it. What I was given was the thing you can't earn, and can't keep, and often don't even recognize at the time; I mean joy.

Ursula K. LeGuin

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Rose1

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Re: Input needed on record-length "honeymoon"
« Reply #24 on: February 13, 2018, 06:38:18 PM »
With my ubpdexmil I thought denial was an unwillingness to consider mental illness in the family only until one day I asked her straight why she kept on and on to the point of bullying and she said "that way you do what I want". Huge lightbulb moment. It never worked for her again either. So she was aware of what she did and it was a tool. She was also very good at the "you must have misunderstood" stuff.
Exbpdh learned from her and refined it. His denial was when he was called on his behaviour and pretty much instant denial, gaslighting etc. He didn't even have to think about it. And yet I know that he used to use bad behaviour as punishment. By reports from a very young age. He used to get sudden episodes of rage but as he got older I think he learned to channel it better so he got his own way. He was diagnosed with bipolar and bpd but also had adhd. But very high functioning in his younger days, as he got older not so much. He is still very heavily invested in getting his own way, and punishing those who he thinks have done something bad to him.
I discussed the epilepsy theory with his doctor and he said it was possible. There is some information on Google regarding anger and temporal lobe epilepsy. Dissociation as part of what was known as mpd but I do find these conditions have some crossover.
I'm glad you're vigilant. There are some bad dudes out there and they flock.

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Widdershins3

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Re: Input needed on record-length "honeymoon"
« Reply #25 on: February 14, 2018, 11:52:16 AM »
There's actually quite a bit online about the epilepsy/rage problem, so I reread some of it this AM. What I haven't been able to figure out is how, if it's seizure-related, my husband has been able to control his raging so well once this new bromance guy motivated him to do so???

Like your problem people, Rose1, one of my husband's parents (his father) had the same completely unpredictable rages and only at his wife, too. Twice I interrupted a rage by him and the sudden confusion and shock on his face was identical to my husband's. The interesting dynamic in that family was that all the kids "split" their parents and idolized him, the abuser, and demonized their mother, the victim. But my FiL was a much nicer person overall, when not having a rage attack.

My husband, OTOH, seems to have used his raging and oppositional behaviors to control his parents from an early age. His much older sisters transferred their denial of their Dad's problem to him, which is unfortunate, since he learned to successfully use very anti-social behaviors to get out of doing anything he wanted to avoid--like chores--and now I find myself with a man who, for the first 34 years of our marriage, made any request to do his few tasks a major battle. When I refused to back down, he would literally pout like a 6 year old the whole way through the chore--lower lip sticking out and a heavy frown! LOL  My amusement at that made it bearable to have to go to battle every time he tried to shirk his (really tiny) share of the housework ;)

I've spent years Googling anger issues to try to figure out what's afflicting my husband and made my life a misery, but I've still not found a description that fits all his behaviors. He's always been extremely irritable, has panic attacks and transfers/projects all his negative emotions onto me. It's a lot like BPD and narcissism combined, but also similar to Intermittent Explosive Disorder.

Often, I've thought to myself that it's a lot like living with an especially obnoxious little kid or Oppositional/Defiant teen. I feel like a parent at the end of my rope quite often, though much less now that he's in "Saintly" mode. But now I find I'm waiting for the other shoe to drop constantly. I cannot win in this situation, I now see. There will never be validation or admission of a problem from him and the question now has become How do I learn to live with this, since I don't want to lose my financial security, home or wonderful local friends at almost 71?

I absolutely love your last sentence: "There are some bad dudes out there and they flock."   :tongue2: I wonder if I'll ever know whether this current bromance guy is evil or whether he's been genuinely fooled by my husband's denial, projection and charm? It took the handful of our friends who finally saw through his act *decades* to do it--he's that good.
I certainly wasn't happy. Happiness has to do with reason, and only reason earns it. What I was given was the thing you can't earn, and can't keep, and often don't even recognize at the time; I mean joy.

Ursula K. LeGuin

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Rose1

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Re: Input needed on record-length "honeymoon"
« Reply #26 on: February 15, 2018, 08:24:19 AM »
It became a family joke with me and d's that if someone was a friend or admirer of grandma (exubpdmil) then you better watch out be a useful good chance they were pd as well. Happened too often. Also dh ssays he used to watch his xpdw walk into a crowded room of strangers and zoom in on the person with issues.

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Beachgirl

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Re: Input needed on record-length "honeymoon"
« Reply #27 on: February 15, 2018, 11:45:10 AM »
You said:
I've spent years Googling anger issues to try to figure out what's afflicting my husband and made my life a misery, but I've still not found a description that fits all his behaviors. He's always been extremely irritable, has panic attacks and transfers/projects all his negative emotions onto me. It's a lot like BPD and narcissism combined, but also similar to Intermittent Explosive Disorder. 

That was me also! IED, I was so relieved when I found it. Then over the years I finally found this website because the pattern was changing.

In books I've been reading they can appear stable while they are content. They aren't ever in control long term if its not just traits of N/BP & depending on the range of the spectrum. Outside of the home is easier for them. He either feels unstable at home that you have REASON in his mind to abandon him or he has a new source outside of the home that allows him to be his emotional self if there is stress. There is likely still stress for him since that is an unsual amount of time. Also if he isn't taking steps to make changes, I would also remain prepared with a go-bag. Many have said on this forum to enjoy the peace while it lasts which is refreshing. In my recent experience it's a good idea to also keep an eye on your credit and bank account debit card and anything else that may be used as a resource. Don't let your guard down but find ways to enjoy life while he's in a good mood and amiable. Practice boundaries while he is more respectful. It sounds like where some rely on alcohol or pills, you SO is relying on his bromance. Some fix that he didnt get as a child maybe. The way you described his behavior sounds like mine when he's running off to refresh his pills or alcohol. There is clarity when it's not your life so hope it makes sense :tongue2:
« Last Edit: February 15, 2018, 11:53:46 AM by Beachgirl »
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Widdershins3

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Re: Input needed on record-length "honeymoon"
« Reply #28 on: February 15, 2018, 02:17:06 PM »
You said:
I've spent years Googling anger issues to try to figure out what's afflicting my husband and made my life a misery, but I've still not found a description that fits all his behaviors. He's always been extremely irritable, has panic attacks and transfers/projects all his negative emotions onto me. It's a lot like BPD and narcissism combined, but also similar to Intermittent Explosive Disorder.

That was me also! IED, I was so relieved when I found it. Then over the years I finally found this website because the pattern was changing.

In books I've been reading they can appear stable while they are content. They aren't ever in control long term if its not just traits of N/BP & depending on the range of the spectrum. Outside of the home is easier for them. He either feels unstable at home that you have REASON in his mind to abandon him or he has a new source outside of the home that allows him to be his emotional self if there is stress. There is likely still stress for him since that is an unsual amount of time. Also if he isn't taking steps to make changes, I would also remain prepared with a go-bag. Many have said on this forum to enjoy the peace while it lasts which is refreshing. In my recent experience it's a good idea to also keep an eye on your credit and bank account debit card and anything else that may be used as a resource. Don't let your guard down but find ways to enjoy life while he's in a good mood and amiable. Practice boundaries while he is more respectful. It sounds like where some rely on alcohol or pills, you SO is relying on his bromance. Some fix that he didnt get as a child maybe. The way you described his behavior sounds like mine when he's running off to refresh his pills or alcohol. There is clarity when it's not your life so hope it makes sense :tongue2:

That's interesting--that he may be stable because he's *content*. Because the validation he's receiving from incompetent therapy and from the bromance apparently is enough to make him content and to lower the volume of his own inner self-abuse. Several people are providing narcissistic supply and I don't think he's ever had that before, at least not since I've known him.

I've spent over an hour this AM at YouTube listening to Little Shaman's podcasts on narcissism and she has an amazing grasp of narcissism, both what it's like to live with one and also what it feels like to be one and how they are created. My therapist has said many of the same things, but Little Shaman puts them into context and explains each one, which I needed.

I'm still reeling from the one on how a narcissist is created. My husband was "an accident" and was born long after his sisters. His parents had moved on to investing themselves in their small business and a housekeeper took care of him. She meant well, but was uneducated and, I think, not very bright. She worshipped him and followed him around picking up everything he dropped and chuckling at him. He got zero discipline and then his parents came home from a long day's work exhausted and were often unwilling, I suspect, to deal with him at all, especially with his tantrums. So they indulged him, something his mother admitted to me. Or they yelled at him, if they had the energy, and he internalized the criticism to the point that it now forms his internal world...that "ocean of shame" that my therapist says fuels his former rages.

And presto! Another narcissist was born. He's definitely still a toddler inside. He responds passionately to anyone who will validate him and demonizes me because from the start I've refused to play along with his "revised history." I have an old steno notebook with pages of Little Shaman's explanations and definitions and his weird behavior is now making more sense to me.

I do keep an eye on our bank statement and if I don't understand something, I send a copy to friends who've volunteered to help with that. Recently he's made very large withdrawals to finance things like a fancy new furnace/AC and to pay off his truck and I'm getting nervous about how much less money we had than we did a year ago. If I am forced to divorce him, the financial cushion is flattening. And I wonder if that's deliberate on his part? I don't know whether his bromance partner is nudging him toward divorce or toward protecting his net worth by staying married to me?
I certainly wasn't happy. Happiness has to do with reason, and only reason earns it. What I was given was the thing you can't earn, and can't keep, and often don't even recognize at the time; I mean joy.

Ursula K. LeGuin

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Widdershins3

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Re: Input needed on record-length "honeymoon"
« Reply #29 on: February 15, 2018, 02:29:11 PM »
It became a family joke with me and d's that if someone was a friend or admirer of grandma (exubpdmil) then you better watch out be a useful good chance they were pd as well. Happened too often. Also dh ssays he used to watch his xpdw walk into a crowded room of strangers and zoom in on the person with issues.
Rose1, my best friend said years ago when the previous bromance guy was wreaking havoc in my marriage that together they were the two most narcissistic misogynists she'd ever encountered. Both were charming and warm and really, inside, hated any woman strong enough to see through and stand up to them.

This current one I hardly know at all. One of the absolute creepiest things they've ever done to me was when my husband invited the guy to stay here overnight so he could attend a conference. I agreed because I had no idea what was going on then. But right before the guy was due, my husband came up with something that he had to do--an overnight trip he couldn't avoid. But he didn't cancel his friend's visit, so I ended up with a very charming total stranger staying at my house when I was alone here. It terrified me. I was so surprised and confused at how quickly it happened that I didn't even insist the guy get a hotel room and now that mortifies me.

He showed up with a huge bottle of Bailey's and oodles of charm and my response was to set up his bed for the night lightning fast, plead tiredness, say goodnight and vanish. I locked the bedroom door and didn't come out until I heard him leaving the house in the morning. So to me he's Not A Nice Person. Maybe that's just my biased take on it--I've had horrific abuse from men and do not trust them--but why didn't he even offer to get a hotel room when he found out my husband would be away? I've believed since then that it was a total set up and it's creeped me out something fierce. My therapist had the same take on it. So is he another abusive and possibly predatory male? Maybe. 
I certainly wasn't happy. Happiness has to do with reason, and only reason earns it. What I was given was the thing you can't earn, and can't keep, and often don't even recognize at the time; I mean joy.

Ursula K. LeGuin

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zephyrblue

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Re: Input needed on record-length "honeymoon"
« Reply #30 on: February 15, 2018, 03:13:58 PM »
The more I read about your husband and his "bromance" partners, the more creeped out and worried for you I get.  IMO you'd be much better off leaving him.  Not only do you have to worry about abuse and weird, dissociated behavior from him, but from his current crush/partner in dysfunction.   

Stay safe.  :hug:

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LightOrb

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Re: Input needed on record-length "honeymoon"
« Reply #31 on: February 15, 2018, 03:20:39 PM »
He showed up with a huge bottle of Bailey's and oodles of charm and my response was to set up his bed for the night lightning fast, plead tiredness, say goodnight and vanish. I locked the bedroom door and didn't come out until I heard him leaving the house in the morning. So to me he's Not A Nice Person. Maybe that's just my biased take on it--I've had horrific abuse from men and do not trust them--but why didn't he even offer to get a hotel room when he found out my husband would be away? I've believed since then that it was a total set up and it's creeped me out something fierce. My therapist had the same take on it. So is he another abusive and possibly predatory male? Maybe.

The way you wrote leaves out all your husband's responsibility to keep you safe. Probably you know it already, I think. He is the one you should be livid with, that knowing your history he dares to invite somebody unknown to your place. Who knows what the other guy was up to, and since you are safe, it doesn't really matter. Your husband is the abusive male in this story. He knew.

I do keep an eye on our bank statement and if I don't understand something, I send a copy to friends who've volunteered to help with that. Recently he's made very large withdrawals to finance things like a fancy new furnace/AC and to pay off his truck and I'm getting nervous about how much less money we had than we did a year ago. If I am forced to divorce him, the financial cushion is flattening. And I wonder if that's deliberate on his part? I don't know whether his bromance partner is nudging him toward divorce or toward protecting his net worth by staying married to me?

I know you have reasons not to divorce him, but at the same time, THIS is the reason to divorce them. For whatever reason, they start to squander money, and the only way to be somewhat safe financially is to make a clear cut. Once the money is lost, there is no way to get it back, or no easy way.

But I think you are mistaken into thinking the bromance partner cares at all about your existance. My ex's father is possibly his longest bromance partner. I don't have decent words to describe him. He never cared about me, except to hate me because I never submitted to his wishes. I was an obstacle to things. You are not, by your descriptions. Whatever your H and bromance partner are doing, it's happening without your intervention in any way. They want what they want and do what they do. You don't even register, so your marriage is not something in which they think about. Perhaps they use you to triangulate, to create a common 'enemy' to feed the drama, and that's the reason you are there. I think your husband has a monster at home, he says, and he gets all the validation because he is a saint to stay with you. However, this story does not require anything from you, in practical terms. You are not real, so there has never been a serious thought about anything real like money or divorce. You are the tool he uses to get sympathy or to discharge his rage. That's all.

:bighug:

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Widdershins3

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Re: Input needed on record-length "honeymoon"
« Reply #32 on: February 15, 2018, 05:35:47 PM »
The more I read about your husband and his "bromance" partners, the more creeped out and worried for you I get.  IMO you'd be much better off leaving him.  Not only do you have to worry about abuse and weird, dissociated behavior from him, but from his current crush/partner in dysfunction.   

Stay safe.  :hug:
If I was half my age and could start my life over again, I would leave, now that I know much more about abuse and am finally growing some self-esteem. But I'll be 71 in a few weeks, have a darling old house on a hill, large gardens from the 1920's and so many dear friends here. Due to one of the highest costs of living in the country, I'd have to move to be able to live in any comfort and to have security, so I'd be trading too much for just the freedom to live without his personality disorders.

Or at least that's how it looks to me now. I'm open to changing that decision. I've had months of weekly therapy with an expert and she's respecting my decision and in fact says she sees it often--women are older before they catch on to what's being done to them and by then are embedded in a wonderful support network and in their homes and leaving is too traumatic for them to even think about.  If they stay, they'll be facing a lower quality of life, but retaining security that's become more and more important as they've aged.

Many of her patients who do leave probably also have grown kids they can rely upon, but my only son died of cancer many years ago. And the few members of my family who are left live on the east coast. It's just not an easy decision to make. I love living here so much.
« Last Edit: February 15, 2018, 05:45:47 PM by Widdershins3 »
I certainly wasn't happy. Happiness has to do with reason, and only reason earns it. What I was given was the thing you can't earn, and can't keep, and often don't even recognize at the time; I mean joy.

Ursula K. LeGuin

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Widdershins3

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Re: Input needed on record-length "honeymoon"
« Reply #33 on: February 15, 2018, 05:56:47 PM »
He showed up with a huge bottle of Bailey's and oodles of charm and my response was to set up his bed for the night lightning fast, plead tiredness, say goodnight and vanish. I locked the bedroom door and didn't come out until I heard him leaving the house in the morning. So to me he's Not A Nice Person. Maybe that's just my biased take on it--I've had horrific abuse from men and do not trust them--but why didn't he even offer to get a hotel room when he found out my husband would be away? I've believed since then that it was a total set up and it's creeped me out something fierce. My therapist had the same take on it. So is he another abusive and possibly predatory male? Maybe.

The way you wrote leaves out all your husband's responsibility to keep you safe. Probably you know it already, I think. He is the one you should be livid with, that knowing your history he dares to invite somebody unknown to your place. Who knows what the other guy was up to, and since you are safe, it doesn't really matter. Your husband is the abusive male in this story. He knew.

I do keep an eye on our bank statement and if I don't understand something, I send a copy to friends who've volunteered to help with that. Recently he's made very large withdrawals to finance things like a fancy new furnace/AC and to pay off his truck and I'm getting nervous about how much less money we had than we did a year ago. If I am forced to divorce him, the financial cushion is flattening. And I wonder if that's deliberate on his part? I don't know whether his bromance partner is nudging him toward divorce or toward protecting his net worth by staying married to me?

I know you have reasons not to divorce him, but at the same time, THIS is the reason to divorce them. For whatever reason, they start to squander money, and the only way to be somewhat safe financially is to make a clear cut. Once the money is lost, there is no way to get it back, or no easy way.

But I think you are mistaken into thinking the bromance partner cares at all about your existance. My ex's father is possibly his longest bromance partner. I don't have decent words to describe him. He never cared about me, except to hate me because I never submitted to his wishes. I was an obstacle to things. You are not, by your descriptions. Whatever your H and bromance partner are doing, it's happening without your intervention in any way. They want what they want and do what they do. You don't even register, so your marriage is not something in which they think about. Perhaps they use you to triangulate, to create a common 'enemy' to feed the drama, and that's the reason you are there. I think your husband has a monster at home, he says, and he gets all the validation because he is a saint to stay with you. However, this story does not require anything from you, in practical terms. You are not real, so there has never been a serious thought about anything real like money or divorce. You are the tool he uses to get sympathy or to discharge his rage. That's all.

:bighug:

I agree with just about everything you say above. And the more I learn about narcissism/BPD and other Cluster B disorders, the more certain I am that this this current peace is entirely dependent on the validation he's getting from outside the marriage. IOW it's dependent upon factors over which I have no control at all, outside of divorcing him and going no contact.

He was preparing to divorce me years back with his former bromance partner, though. That ended one evening at dinner when an unsuspecting co-worker of his happened to mention that there are community property laws in our state and my husband realized that I would get half of everything. The look on his face was just brutal for me. I don't think I'll ever forget how heartbroken I was to be forced to accept that he wasn't going to divorce me solely due to financial loss for himself.

Money apparently is very important to him and if he dumps me, he'll lose a lot of it.

That said, you're correct that he's got the usual narcissistic lack of empathy for what he's done to me and is using me rather than loving or protecting me. Today I got an insight into how he got this way from a YouTube podcast by a woman who calls herself Little Shaman and who has a real gift for explaining narcissism with crystal clarity. I see clearly how he was shaped into this stunted, limited person as a very small child. And I think it's finally sunk in on me just how hopeless it is for me to try to fix him, too. Amazing how long that's kept me trying.

I am livid with him. It's that anger that's giving me the energy to educate myself about my situation and to be willing to spend so much money on therapy. If my written tone seems detached, that's just the way I tend to write. I'm furious that I'm not valued and that he's gotten away with intermittent abuse for half my life. I long for a way to be able to surgically excise him from my life and still have the life I've built here. But so far I cannot find a way to do it. 
« Last Edit: February 15, 2018, 05:58:41 PM by Widdershins3 »
I certainly wasn't happy. Happiness has to do with reason, and only reason earns it. What I was given was the thing you can't earn, and can't keep, and often don't even recognize at the time; I mean joy.

Ursula K. LeGuin

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LightOrb

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Re: Input needed on record-length "honeymoon"
« Reply #34 on: February 15, 2018, 06:36:26 PM »
I am glad to see you aware and prepared. If one day you come to the East coast, I'd like to give you a real big hug.

I had to laugh at this...
Quote
He was preparing to divorce me years back with his former bromance partner, though. That ended one evening at dinner when an unsuspecting co-worker of his happened to mention that there are community property laws in our state and my husband realized that I would get half of everything.

I bet he thinks he is a mastermind, and he didn't know the First thing you ask about a divorce?  :stars:  :blowup:  :rofl:

Of course he worries about money, and losing half. That's not negligible. But I think he "needs" you more because he needs a monster, a culprit, than it is about money. Your H and my ex cannot assume they are what they are, and they are the reason the world behaves towards them as they do.  They need a monster, somebody who is to blame for the void they have inside, the empty elevator shaft where the rest of us have a soul. In the case of my ex, he discovered he was not the brilliant scientific genius, destined to be as famous as Einstein (partly because he is lazy), and he simply couldn't deal with it. It was easier to pretend the problem is he had sex with too few women, and of course, that I did not make him feel like the ultimate Latin lover (he was not, how could I? I am not magician!  :rofl:)

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Spirit Girl

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Re: Input needed on record-length "honeymoon"
« Reply #35 on: February 15, 2018, 08:07:34 PM »
I don't know if any of the others sense this but it seems to me that the bromance guy has had a cult-like effect on your h, meaning hypnotizing your h into those wild-eyed states. It is extremely scary.

I can appreciate that you must be exhausted trying to understand it. To me it's beyond understanding it, it's more about what do you want to do to enjoy your life, the happiness and peacefulness that you're entitled to. This is all so sad. My heart is breaking for you. It's amazing all the work you've put into this and all the progress you've made. I wish you much love Widdershins3.

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Beachgirl

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Re: Input needed on record-length "honeymoon"
« Reply #36 on: February 15, 2018, 11:17:53 PM »

I do keep an eye on our bank statement and if I don't understand something, I send a copy to friends who've volunteered to help with that. Recently he's made very large withdrawals to finance things like a fancy new furnace/AC and to pay off his truck and I'm getting nervous about how much less money we had than we did a year ago. If I am forced to divorce him, the financial cushion is flattening. And I wonder if that's deliberate on his part? I don't know whether his bromance partner is nudging him toward divorce or toward protecting his net worth by staying married to me?
The book Stop Caretaking speaks of setting aside your own stash of funds as much as possible with safety in mind. Highly recommend. It's amazing how little we need to survive when we're facing freedom from abuse. Hope for the best, but plan for the worst.
"The only thing more unthinkable than leaving was staying; the only thing more impossible than staying was leaving". Eat, Pray, Love
♡INFJ & Protesting Colluder😉

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Widdershins3

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Re: Input needed on record-length "honeymoon"
« Reply #37 on: February 20, 2018, 12:07:49 PM »
I am glad to see you aware and prepared. If one day you come to the East coast, I'd like to give you a real big hug.

I had to laugh at this...
Quote
He was preparing to divorce me years back with his former bromance partner, though. That ended one evening at dinner when an unsuspecting co-worker of his happened to mention that there are community property laws in our state and my husband realized that I would get half of everything.

I bet he thinks he is a mastermind, and he didn't know the First thing you ask about a divorce?  :stars:  :blowup:  :rofl:

Of course he worries about money, and losing half. That's not negligible. But I think he "needs" you more because he needs a monster, a culprit, than it is about money. Your H and my ex cannot assume they are what they are, and they are the reason the world behaves towards them as they do.  They need a monster, somebody who is to blame for the void they have inside, the empty elevator shaft where the rest of us have a soul. In the case of my ex, he discovered he was not the brilliant scientific genius, destined to be as famous as Einstein (partly because he is lazy), and he simply couldn't deal with it. It was easier to pretend the problem is he had sex with too few women, and of course, that I did not make him feel like the ultimate Latin lover (he was not, how could I? I am not magician!  :rofl:)
Thank you for the hug--I could use one! And Yes, once I got over the first, worst wave of pain at finally having confirmation that he was planning a divorce, I was amused at that too :tongue2:  Probably his greatest narcissism shows in the belief that he's brilliantly intelligent--! He's disparaged my intellect for most of our marriage, though at first he did comment on specific gifts I had, but only in the sense of self-aggrandizement--"Look who *I* married!" never to compliment me, personally.

I don't know if any of the others sense this but it seems to me that the bromance guy has had a cult-like effect on your h, meaning hypnotizing your h into those wild-eyed states. It is extremely scary.

I can appreciate that you must be exhausted trying to understand it. To me it's beyond understanding it, it's more about what do you want to do to enjoy your life, the happiness and peacefulness that you're entitled to. This is all so sad. My heart is breaking for you. It's amazing all the work you've put into this and all the progress you've made. I wish you much love Widdershins3.
I worried quite a bit about the "cult-like" aspect of their relationship when I began to be aware it was going on. I bought and read a number of books on NLP, which is often used by would-be gurus, in fact. Still don't have any way of verifying it was used on him, but his blank-yet-excited look immediately following phone conversations had (to me) a scary, programmed quality to them. But his almost immediate dissociation and denial of having said whatever it was reminded me of his rages, which seemed like seizures. There was no rage or even anger with the insulting, demeaning comments though. They definitely came from another mind and it was scary to see my husband acting like a robot and repeating them :unsure:

Thank you for the empathy! That's been largely missing in Real Life, except from my sister, who's clear across the country. Even my best friend who's had his number for over 30 years is acting as though I should just accept the fake saintly act and, as she put it, "enjoy it"...ugh. To me it's just disgusting that he could think for a single second that he can just wipe the slate clean of decades of abuse by denying it and projecting it all onto me. Motive means a lot to me and I'm willing to give people the benefit of the doubt if they did bad with good intentions. But he has no good intentions other than making sure people regard him as a long-suffering martyr saint and me as the villain. It's like the ultimate slap in the face after enduring so many, many years of abuse.

The book Stop Caretaking speaks of setting aside your own stash of funds as much as possible with safety in mind. Highly recommend. It's amazing how little we need to survive when we're facing freedom from abuse. Hope for the best, but plan for the worst.
I do have a modest bank acct. and some cash set aside, but a single night at a hotel around here is around $200, so if I'm unable to reach my friends who've promised me couch space in case of an emergency, my little cash stash will last me a day, tops. I just hope I'll be able to get to my purse and my credit card that draws on that bank account. Since I'm semi-retired, any cash I sock away has to come out of my "walking around money" and I'm amazed he hasn't said anything about it so far. Still reading the book in fits and starts--I need to find blocks of time to really study it.
I certainly wasn't happy. Happiness has to do with reason, and only reason earns it. What I was given was the thing you can't earn, and can't keep, and often don't even recognize at the time; I mean joy.

Ursula K. LeGuin

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Widdershins3

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Re: Input needed on record-length "honeymoon"
« Reply #38 on: February 26, 2018, 12:50:52 PM »
Just a quick update:  My husband's saintly facade slipped so badly last night that I got a rare glimpse of the angry narcissist beneath it. I'd just made a remark in passing (politely) for him to remember to wash the cat food cans stacked up on the kitchen sink. I only ask him to wash dishes on weekends and I've written here before about his furious entitlement issue with doing any housework at all, but during this long, weird honeymoon phase, he's been doing it without a huge fight.

I don't know if others here suffering with narcissistic spouses (who also have borderline traits) have risked raging when they dare to remind them about anything--? But my husband has had this response since the beginning of our marriage. A simple "Did you remember to..." led 100% of the time directly to getting my head snapped off. The fact that he'd stopped that reflexive behavior when he assumed this weird new martyr saint persona was amazing to me. And he managed to keep it up for an astonishing 9 months, too.

But last night a brief reminder, since he'd been "forgetting" to do it for weeks, brought on the Good Ol' Times--instant anger, then deflection ("YOU forget things all the time!"). My work in therapy (that included post-hypnotic suggestion to curb my over-reactivity) paid off, thank heavens. I just observed him with amazement instead of fighting back. He slammed around the kitchen and didn't speak to me again that evening--the old, real him was definitely back.

Then this AM the Mr. Perfect persona was back in place--overly cheery (for 5AM!) Good Morning!, delivered in a faintly patronizing, superior way. But his slip showed me that it really, truly is just an act. The real, personality-disordered guy with severe irritability issues and deep anger is just behind the mask. I needed to see it, too. It's creepy to live with a fake persona, especially one that's lasted for such a long, long time. Still reading Stop Caretaking, which is helping me to see my part in our sick relationship, but I needed to see the real him again to keep from getting muddled and confused by the act.
I certainly wasn't happy. Happiness has to do with reason, and only reason earns it. What I was given was the thing you can't earn, and can't keep, and often don't even recognize at the time; I mean joy.

Ursula K. LeGuin

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LightOrb

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Re: Input needed on record-length "honeymoon"
« Reply #39 on: February 26, 2018, 01:09:00 PM »
But his slip showed me that it really, truly is just an act.

The fact that they don't do it to other people, specially people in positions of power respect to them, shows clearly how controllable the abuse is, dear Widdershins3. Of course, this doesn't make it easier to understand, because we can't hurt people like that. But everything is always an act. I am not convinced the rages are not an act too, after I've seen them (ex and F) switch it off in an instant. Nonetheless, the important is not that they are an act, but that everything is deliberate.

Take care of yourself :bighug: