Editor’s note: Lovefraud received the following letter from a 24-year-old woman, a graduate student.
He told me he was all I needed; he told me that he was the only person who cared. He told me my friends hated me because they were so mad at me because I got sick. He told me they were just all bitches like all of the other girls in the world. Like his ex-girlfriends, like his mother, like (me).
I had no idea that sociopaths existed. I thought that “sociopath” was only a word thrown about on TV, late night news, America’s Most Wanted.
My therapist told me that my ex-boyfriend is one of the worst sociopaths that she has heard about in her 12 years of practice.
Abuse starts slow
The abuse started out subtle; the control started out slow. He told me that I’d look cute if I just started dressing a little more suggestively. He told me that a slight heel (high heels) would do wonders for any girl’s appearance. “Didn’t I want to be the girl all of the other girls were jealous of?” He would tell me how to dress in order to make guys stare.
He would walk me down the street, hand around my neck, but whispering, “Babe, you look great. God, baby you’re my good thing; look at all of them watching; they think you’re so HOT.”
I now think they were wondering what was up because I was dressed like a whore and my ex boyfriend would ask random guys if they would pay me to provide sexual favors for them.
I dated this man for two and a half years. He would control what I did, what I wore, what I ate, when I slept, how I slept, what I was required to wear to bed, what I could do in bed, IF I could move in bed … He wouldn’t let me move; he would get angry if I woke him up. He needed his sleep so he could “go out and make money the next day. You know you’re just a needy woman. You need me, the big strong man…”
And he’d laugh at me. He would ridicule me. He would make fun of me. He would laugh if I thought I was smart. He would laugh if I thought I could do something. He would introduce me to people as “the retard.” He would tell me not to talk—why would I bother? It wasn’t like I knew what I was saying anyway.
He would tie me up tell me it was sexy and that everyone else was doing it. He would punch me in the stomach, but he would tell me that he was seeing how tight my abs were. He would show me horrible, horrible movies about what women do when they’re hurt.
He showed me the movie Secretary, where the woman gets sad and then cuts herself, gets found out by her boss and her boss says something like no, don’t do that. And they proceed to have sex while her boss beats her butt with a wooden paddle. My ex would force me to have sex while slapping my butt and digging his hands into me, saying it was love.
The list of scary things goes on longer than I want to remember right now. It got to the point that my parents were afraid. My ex-boyfriend was losing control, and I was stuck in the middle.
I would do anything for him, but then I did the one thing he forbade me to do. I got out. I realized that my parents didn’t hate me. I realized that my friends didn’t hate me, and I realized that I am stronger than he is and that I didn’t have to be his “good thing” anymore.
Then he told me that he made a huge mistake. He told me that he was “so sorry,” that it was normal to fly into insane rages when one loses something that he loved. He tried to get me back. I broke up with him. He stayed around for a few months trying all of this.
He convinced me that we could still be together if we were just “F” buddies, because I was the best girl for sex or at sex that he’d ever had. I know that is complete b.s. now, but at the time, when he told me I was the “only one” and “oh so special,” it worked to keep me around.
But, yeah, I mean there’s no doubt in my mind that if I had stayed with him, he would have convinced me to kill myself, or killed me himself. He would tell me to take pills. He said it was a way for me to show the world how “hurt” I was (all said in a condescending and convincing tone).
Anyways, there’s more, but yeah he tried to get me back. He tried telling me how heartbroken and lonely he was without me, which didn’t make sense to me, because when he and I were dating he told me he didn’t get lonely, he just didn’t “feel” it. It’s weird because when I was with him and he was being manipulative and abusive, he almost always told me what he was doing, but he always said, “But baby, it’s okay because we’re different. No one else is like us; we’re better than everyone; just trust me.”
Apart for six months
I can say simply that when I was with him he was emotionally abusive, physically abusive, sexually abusive. He would always say, “You can’t rape the willing, and you know you’re always willing, don’t bother saying no, because I know that no means yes.” Mind games and everything. He would get me so confused and afraid that if I said no, he’d be angry, and if he was angry he would hit me. Or at least I was terrified that is what would happen, because he would always tell me that he was bigger and stronger…
I have a restraining order against him now. I am in therapy now. We have been apart for six months, but I am still so shocked from it all. It still hurts really bad. I was with a man who told me he loved me, but that was just so that I would keep playing his bitch, keep being his doll and keep being his slave.