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Forums / PTSD & Trauma / Gaslighted.

Topic: Gaslighted.

15 posts, 0 answered
  1. nib
    nib avatar
    35 posts
    14 September 2021

    I am a young female who has been sexually and romantically attracted to a single, older male since 2017. It was love at first sight for him (in 2016) although I did not become attracted to him until a year later. I did not realise at the time that he was a package deal - and I am not just talking about his young daughter - I am talking about his crazy and clingy ex-wife (who refuses to let go of him as she is afraid of being alone) as well as everybody else in her family (including his ex's sons, daughters, nieces, nephews and grandchildren - none of which obtain any biological relation this this man.) The ex wife determines who is good enough for everyone in her family to date, and who isn't. The man I am attracted to co-parents with his ex-wife and I believe they continuously give their daughter false hope that they are getting back together. This obviously bothers me, as I am clearly attracted to him and wan to get to know him more/get into a relationship with him without his ex and her family involved. I ideally want nothing to do with the ex and her family. They are the kind of people who are "liked" by everyone. They need to understand that I do NOT like them and their family. They need to leave the man I am interested in ALONE.

    However, I cannot praise this man at all. He has lied compulsively about me to his lawyer and to my lawyer and to his entire family and to me as well. He has made me go crazy and has made me question my sanity, which has resulted in three trips to the psychiatric ward of a hospital in one year. He has also been verbally abusive towards me. He has said things to me like: 'whatever medication you're taking clearly isn't working', 'you have more issues than perviously thought', 'you're not very clever' and, he then stood to his feet and curled his hands into fists and screamed in my face that I am a 'retard.' But, get this - he thinks about me, but isn't sure about what he wants. I also did hear from a third party that his ex is psychotically jealous of me. She needs to grow up, really.

    I am currently seeing a psychotherapist privately and I usually talk to her about this and she has been excellent. I have also spoken with a BeyondBlue counsellor about this and they have stated that I am experiencing intimate violence from this man.

    I love this man very much, but I also think that I am too good for him, and I think that he knows this was well, hence the abuse I experienced from him.
  2. Banksy92
    Community Champion
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    Banksy92 avatar
    266 posts
    14 September 2021

    Hi Nib,

    Thanks for sharing your story, it's great to hear you're able to confide with a therapist and BB counsellor about these issues.

    What you describe here sounds emotionally abusive - these events have been so taxing to your mental health - what is it that keeps you wanting him in your life?

    By the sounds, his ex-wife will be a part of the picture as long as they are co-parenting their daughter, but as long as he is in your life maybe try to set some clear boundaries to ensure you feel safe.

    We can't always choose who we fall for, but we can choose who is a part of our lives. You certainly don't deserve to be lied to, mistreated or to feel confused about where you stand.

    Hope this helps :)

    1 person found this helpful
  3. n2k12
    n2k12 avatar
    14 posts
    16 September 2021 in reply to nib
    This sounds like he may be narcissistic. I have experienced this in my life several times, from several different people. they LOVE to use the word "retard". They find the most offensive, degrading, down putting words that they can use, then they throw them at you. I feel your pain, i really do. Hospitalization is a scary thing. I would highly suggest, to leave this man. I can imagine this is not what you want to hear. loneliness is a painful thing. Ask yourself though. Would you prefer your sanity, or risk all self esteem for love that is not real? Once someone does this kind of emotional abuse, it will happen again and again. the only way to escape it, is RUN. no contact. it will hurt. it will get better though :) i went through it for 7 years. I went to hospitals myself. I was having stress related seizures (due to my autism) from the emotional abuse and gaslighting. Since getting out of that 7 year relationship, (left 1 year ago almost) i have had no seizures, i drink less, i weigh less, i have my own little place. and i am self sufficient. I used to rely on my narc for everything. sorry, i went of course there. this is about you!. please, consider the advice i gave. take care of YOU. always! someone who puts you in hospital does NOT love and care about you! as hard as that is to believe sometimes, it is true. please save yourself! take good care of your mental, physical, and spiritual health. we only get one life on this earth. why waste it? there are some good people out there!
    2 people found this helpful
  4. nib
    nib avatar
    35 posts
    18 September 2021 in reply to Banksy92

    Hi Banksy92,

    This is going to sound stupid, but I want to keep him in my life because I think he is good looking and that I would never find someone as good looking like him ever again.

  5. LorenaC
    LorenaC avatar
    12 posts
    18 September 2021

    Hi Nib,

    Sorry about heard that. Maybe he is not sure about what he wants and that is why he is acting like that and make you feel down. I think is good you try to take some time away from him, even if that hurts you, sometimes the time gives as more clarity and help to understand our feelings and the abuse cycle that we are in.

    Thank you for sharing you experience with us, i think is very important you are aware of the situation and trying to find a solution.

    Lorena

    1 person found this helpful
  6. Banksy92
    Community Champion
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    266 posts
    30 September 2021 in reply to nib

    Don't sell yourself short nib, the future can hold all sorts of possibilities and relationships if we open up to them.

    I understand looks can be important (I myself have stayed in relationships that made me feel less than because of physical attraction) but now I think 'attractiveness' is more than just someones looks. It's about how they makes you feel. Do they prop you up, do they make you laugh and support you when you need it most... etc.

    Nib, may I ask - do you think this relationship is good for your mental health?

    1 person found this helpful
  7. nib
    nib avatar
    35 posts
    2 October 2021 in reply to Banksy92

    Hi Banksy92,

    I don't know my worth. I wasn't raised to know my worth.

  8. Banksy92
    Community Champion
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    Banksy92 avatar
    266 posts
    4 October 2021 in reply to nib

    Hi Nib,

    I'm sorry to hear that, it's definitely been a journey for me to know my own worth so I can relate to how you're feeling.

    For me, I only really began to see my good qualities and what I deserve when I started gaining confidence through seeing a psychologist. I needed to work through my issues. That's just me.

    But even if you do not see it right now, please know that you are a wonderful person who deserves happiness and love. From people you trust.

    How are you feeling about everything with him lately?

    2 people found this helpful
  9. nib
    nib avatar
    35 posts
    7 October 2021 in reply to Banksy92

    Hi Banksy92,

    I see a psychotherapist whenever I can afford to see her. She is very expensive, and I am struggling financially. Thank You very much for you kind words. And I really do not know how to feel about him at the moment.

    Thank You for listening to me :)

  10. nib
    nib avatar
    35 posts
    30 October 2021 in reply to Banksy92

    Hi Banksy92,

    The problem with his ex-wife is that she feels the need to be friends with ALL of her exes, even with an ex who she shares grown adult children with.

  11. white knight
    Community Champion
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    white knight avatar
    9757 posts
    30 October 2021 in reply to nib

    Hi Nib, welcome

    Great to see so many valuable replies here.

    I'll try to be gentle but objective as well as I have a few things relevant to your situation.

    My first long term girlfriend was not suitable for me- but I was in love with her and love makes you ignore the flaws. She had severe mental illness issues and I didnt think I did however many years later I found I had bipolar and other stuff. After 5 years in desperation to get to the bottom of why she left me 2 to 3 times a week I visited her psychiatrist. He told me "you are young and she is many year older, but she has many issues in life. You would be far better off to move on and find a lady with none of those issues."

    This hurt me. I believed in terms of love she was a "one off". I'd never be able to love someone as much as her!. So I hung on and a further 2 years I realised- nothing will change, her DNA was set. I left her.

    Twenty years later I drove past her house as I was working in the area and curiosity made me notice she was gardening. We had coffee and chatted. She told me she has a boyfriend and I found out he had the same issues with her as I did, indecision, verbal violence and so forth. I realised then that I did the right thing by leaving. More importantly, I'd fallen in love 3 more times, the last one is my now wife and she is adorable and much more compatible.

    I'd like you to think about this man, that there is more to a suitable partner than handsomeness. That other features including - age, baggage and compatibility all make for long term lifelong partnership, not just good looks.

    As for not knowing what he wants, by now at his age he should. For me it is unacceptable that he is robbing you of your young adulthood why he messes around with what he wants in a woman. If he is that undecisive then is it good that he enjoys the fruits of the relationship while he waits for his decision making to arrive?

    So in the words of that doctor some 35 years ago that tried to give me advice that I ignored- perhaps you should be looking for love with someone that is more suited.

    I know it is difficult to listen to these words but I'm being honest.

    Finally, it is up to him to disassociate himself from his ex and her family. If he doesnt do it then he has a reason why he allows the contact to remain. If she is the mother of his child there is some need for contact but any more and it is hurting you then he should protect his relationship. Sorry but it is another reason to consider moving on.

    TonyWK

    1 person found this helpful
  12. Banksy92
    Community Champion
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    Banksy92 avatar
    266 posts
    1 November 2021 in reply to nib

    Hi Nib,

    How have you been feeling about this lately?

    That's great you have someone you have been seeing. Have you considered seeing a bulk billing psychologist in between these sessions so you have someone free or affordable you can work with while money is tight? There are lots of great specialists available for those with financial struggles too.

    This website allows you to filter by area, expertise and if they are bulk billing which may be helpful? https://psychology.org.au/

    How has your relationship with him been recently?

    Hope to hear from you.

    1 person found this helpful
  13. nib
    nib avatar
    35 posts
    1 November 2021 in reply to white knight

    Hi TonyWK,

    I want to start by thanking you for your input and for sharing your story; it really means a lot to me and your comment in particular has given me a good perspective of what I should consider when seeking a relationship.

  14. nib
    nib avatar
    35 posts
    1 November 2021 in reply to Banksy92

    Hi Banksy92,

    I have been doing well lately. My mood has been up and down and I think it is largely due to the fact that I forgot to take my medication for four days straight. I usually forget to take my medication, so my mother helps me out by reminding me that I should take them/gives them the me as soon as I wake up in the morning. I started taking them again just yesterday.

    Anyway, back on topic, I am considering in seeking psychological support from headspace, since I am in my early twenties. I want to focus on getting good grades at adult school next year, eating better, exercising more, making new friends, and starting a business down the track. One thing at a time, of course.

    Thank You for providing me with this link, I will check it out :-)

  15. Banksy92
    Community Champion
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    Banksy92 avatar
    266 posts
    5 November 2021 in reply to nib

    Seeking support from Headspace sounds like a great move Nib, I've heard they offer really helpful services for young people. Let us know how you go. All your plans for next year sound wonderful too, it's great to hear you're thinking about whats best for you and will give you a fulfilled and happy life.

    Sorry to hear you had a rough time as you missed your medication, hopefully now you're back on track you're feeling a little better?

    Keep us updated with how everything goes.

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