Now I understand who you truly are I can honestly say I don’t give a shit about you. I once adored you, believed in you and defended you. I gave you the perfect family life and great kids – made you look so good to the outside; a real social justice, feminist, family man. But then you kept screwing the young women at work; you are a hypocrite. I could not accept the pity plays you made of your childhood abuse as an excuse any longer; did that even happen? I would not put it past you to lie about that too. You knew you were torturing me and you let yourself keep doing it. I gave you a choice; you chose to leave, even though you told the kids I’d thrown you out. Straight away I started picking up the pieces. I changed your photo on my phone to one of a dog turd. I have given you enough of me and you will get no more. I haven’t looked back.
The hard part is coming to terms with the one sidedness of the marriage; that I gave so much and what I didn’t give, was stolen from me. I was giving based on assumed mutuality, thinking that that is what one does in a marriage. The betrayals stripped me of the trust I had in that sense of mutuality and left me feeling incredibly exploited and not knowing how to be. Not trusting myself. A total obliteration, as is said, of my sense of self.
And in my case the betrayal goes deeper than for others because I was asked to accept a flawed narrative, ie that you were remorseful about the first affair, had learned from it and were deeply committed to the marriage. So I subjugated myself to that new narrative 10 years ago, having experienced the first obliteration, only to be exponentially obliterated again by the next one.
As the counsellor told us, you are a cruel man. You totally controlled the narrative for both of us and knew it was a sham but wanted/needed me to believe in it until it suited you to move on. Dare I say I suspect you enjoyed knowing I was being duped by your infidelities. You got some weird buzz out of being in control; it’s really sick actually.
This is the gaslighting. You acted like there was nothing wrong and told me to have faith in that narrative; all along enjoying watching me being played. It is hard to come back from that.
On so many levels, knowing you are a narc helps a lot.
There are no mitigating excuses for this. You constructed a fake facade, worked so that I trusted it and was made to feel safe and therefore allow myself to be vulnerable. And then you totally betrayed my vulnerability. You completely exploited the trust I had in you. You used my trust as a weapon, as power over me, to abuse me with.
You work in social justice and family violence to protect children. You know about power and the inappropriate use of power – you lecture people on it. There was a massive power differential between us because you knew what you were doing and I did not. And you do the same in your infidelities, by screwing younger women who are junior work colleagues. If only your work really knew what you are…..
Based on the fake narrative I was presented with and accepted and was expected to accept, on the basis that it was mutual, I gave generously of myself and was totally scammed.
My job now is to explore why I became vulnerable to it and to learn what healthy relationships are. I am rebuilding my identity. I am teaching the kids to decide for themselves what your motives are, and to not automatically accept what you say. A good lesson for life, sadly one needed for the person they should be able to trust. It is not hard to teach them because they know what you are. They worked you out before I did – they confronted you with your infidelity first.
You use the constructed narrative of the father kept from his kids as another pity play – nothing to do with me, they just don’t trust you; they know you well.
Life is vastly brighter now and includes many more contented moments than ever before. I now experience regular joy; joy from the things you used to shut down in me. There is still much pain because of what you stole from me, my trust, my self-belief, 20 years of my younger self, but I know I am so much better off without you in my life. I smile to myself knowing you are somewhere else being toxic. I don’t miss you because I know that is all you can be; toxic. So long as you do it somewhere else. You are irredeemable, unfixable and someone else’s problem now. Enjoy.