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LETTERS TO LOVEFRAUD: It starts at home

Editor’s Note: The Lovefraud reader One_Step_at_a_Time sent the following post.

Finally, after a long break, I have returned to reading The Betrayal Bond. I feel immediately open when I read the concepts presented in it, and I feel protected, like someone actually has my best interest at heart.

The spath did not. And yet she did things looked like she cared for me, or perhaps she was just protecting her supply. I don’t know yet, but as I remember and unravel my experience with her, I will start to write those things down, and ask here, “please decode this for me, ‘cause I just don’t know, it is too close and I cannot see the whole of its shape.”

Tonight, after an intense week that was a sprint for my tired spirit and body, I have a break. So, into the tub I went for a nice long soak and a read. Five pages further along in The Betrayal Bond, and I am triggered. But not in a bad way. More like, hmm? And then, aha!

My dad. I could see the arc of our relationship; it was so gradual, and so alienating I hadn’t seen it. A few weeks before Christmas this year I went NC with my dad. I felt it was the right thing to do – probably more clear to me emotionally at this time, than being NC with the spath is.

My dad – THAT guy. That guy who I loved and cherished as a kid – who, by default, was the more easygoing adult in the house; THAT guy who I emulated, who I was proud of as a kid; THAT guy who, as he ages, becomes increasingly more bizarre, cold, and narcissitic. THAT guy – whose “love,” I recognized tonight,  in the arc of devalue and discard.

My old man is an N. My mom told me a story a couple of times of the second year of their marriage, in which my dad goes out and and spends the money they (“she”) needs for formula for my older sib, on gas for a boat so that he can go water skiing. Now, my old man is in his seventh decade, and is first generation – comes from a very patriarchal eastern European family – was a young hot shot, worked hard, played hard. His being selfish at a young age, well, it can be understood in the context of his life. His actions: reprehensible. Possible to contextualize: yes. How my mother must have felt. Her husband spent the money they needed to feed their child. It was the 50’s; you didn’t leave even if they were beating you.

I moved far away from home at 18; thousands of miles away. I was more intelligent than I knew. It was 15 years before I understood that I went to get away from them.

My mom has been my dad’s supply my whole life. And now she’s ill and he has lost his supply, and as a friend says, his head is so far up his ass, we haven’t seen his neck in a decade.

And she still tries. And she has ALWAYS tried to broker deals and cajole and shame me into taking care of him – be another source.  My WHOLE life – even now, demented as hell, she does this. It has made it so much easier for her to dismiss his behaviour, because she cannot remember how he hurts her, day in, day out.

When I first came back to this area, I stayed with them, and I stayed much longer than I should have. I couldn’t leave her. It was amazing; I actually had to RUN AWAY FROM HOME in my 40’s.

I have been struggling mightily. The last four years have been a spiral of worsening conditions for me. For the first time in my life, I need the help of my family. Any given month right since the hardcore spath experience I have been one bad decision or circumstance away from the street.

And my dad will not help.

Now, I cannot talk to my mom – cannot see her, cannot not tell her what he has done and continues to do, cannot ask for help and cannot challenge her mixed up salad thinking that has her acting like they have no money and she has no conscience about helping her daughter.  I cannot challenge her – this poor demented woman. Nor could I challenge the poor demented spath. The poor, helpless, abused spath.

Several years ago, my father as trustee of my inheritance from my grandfather, screwed me. It is a long and complex story. It took eight years of lies and unfulfilled promises to *get* that he has stolen this money from me, and truly, has NO intention of paying it back.

I am really lucky; I have friends who have called his behaviour, have looked at me in horror when I describe the things that he has done, and continues to do. A look of horror goes a long way with me; it speaks directly to my damaged sense of self service, saying, “look, someone else knows this is wrong, knows you have done nothing to deserve this treatment, KNOWS his actions are disordered.” Funny, I KNOW his actions are wrong, but I have tried again and again AND AGAIN – to MAKE IT RIGHT.

I have been profoundly shamed by my father’s treatment of me. In the last four years he has constantly devalued me. And now, I am discarded, because I NEED HIM to be giving, and loving and supportive.

The N arc has taken decades to show itself. But there it is. As I am writing about it I keep seeing a rainbow, “arco  iris” in Spanish.  If being spathed finally got me to see my father for what he is, then so be it.

I have a long way to go in this healing around him and the supply mentality of my mom and my upbringing. I am up for a little enlightened self interest at this point in my life. I pray that I can learn to be smart in this way. The possibility seems kinda exciting (and ya know, I like me some excitement ;) but I am not sure if I will be able to do it.

My dad bought a new boat last year.



157 Comments on "LETTERS TO LOVEFRAUD: It starts at home"

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  1. Dancing Queen,

    Welcome to Lovefraud. It’s sometimes hard to sort out what has happened to you. We have many articles that may help you understand. You can find them under “Categories” in the column on the left side of this page. Take your time and read, and you may start to understand better.

  2. Renewedhope says:

    Wow! This story has shocked me into realizing my father was a N. He could have also been Spath as well.I am still trying to evaluate our lives together. Which ended in May of last year when he passed away. Here is my dad: born in 1925 and raised as the only male sibling.( He had 2 sisters) He became a electrician by trade. Met my mother in the 40′s. Told her she had to stay home and could never work outside the home. He was a beer drinker and had his drinking buddies whom he ran around with and got drunk with. When he would get drunk he would come home from the Tavern at around 2 in the morning plastered. He would wake up the whole house and “make us” sit down and eat the cold cod fish and limp, cold & greasy french fries he bought on the way out of the tavern. He would threaten us with the belt if we didn’t eat it. Then he would either get in a fight with my mother or go to bed at which time had sex with her..willingly or not…I wasn’t always sure. This went on until October1974 when Mother found a lump in her left breast which turned out to be cancer. She had a radical mastectomy by spring. And by September the cancer had spread to her female organs and Lymph Nodes. The day she got out of the hospital, she was so weak she could hardly walk. The cancer spread into the bones too by this time. My dad , coming home in one of his stupors decided he wanted sex with my mother. “I am too sick” I can’t.” She begged him. That was when he went ballistic and started throwing things. Like a galvanized bucket we used to milk the cow with on our farm. He threw it and hit mother in the back of the head with it. That was when three of us went into action. My twin picked up his guitar and smashed it over my dad’s head. The man never felt it. Then I picked up and grabbed whatever I could find..which was a jar of Vaseline. It hit the back of his head and smached in a million pieces .. he went down. He got himself to bed and we got Mother cleaned up and got her into bed. I swore the next time he touched her he would get it. The next morning I got mother up and I asked her to go with me and we could get a place and I would take care of her. She didn’t have to stay with him. Mom wouldn’t hear of it. She has been stuck in this horrid rut for over 30 years and didn’t know any other way to live. Mother died the following October, one year to the day she found the lump in her breast. My father didn’t wait long to find a new wife. In fact he was cheating on my mother their entire married life. This ONE he had been screwing, he took up to meet my mother on her death bed to tell her that this was who was going to take her place after she was gone. I know this because the CNA who took care of my mother was a friend of my sisters and witnessed the whole thing. I didn’t find out about this happening until 10 years later.
    Fast Forward to two years ago. Dad started getting worse with his prostrate cancer. I had to moved back home to the mid west to care for him along with my twin brother. My father never helped us in the 30 years we lived out on our own..no matter how bad we needed it. But when we moved back home he could not have been more giving monetary wise. But he hated all the in laws in our family because they took our attention from him. He loathed my wife. She couldn’t do anything right in his eyes. As he got worse he was harder and harder to care for. he HAD to be in charge all the time. Even when he was placed on Hospice and their basic rule was that the patient wasn’t allowed to take their own meds. He stole the morphine pills from me several times and had that shit eating grin on his face as he held the bottle up: “See what I have?”" Now I am keeping them!” That was it. I removed myself from the case and moved my wife to I to town. He died about a month and a half later. It’s been almost a year now and I have yet to cry one tear for this man. He manipulated all of his children and his wife. made our lives a living Hell. I hope I haven’t rambled too much. now. Your opinions as to whether he was a spath or not? I think so. I know he was a N.

  3. one_step_at_a_time says:

    hey renewedhope: welcome to collateral diagnoses! I wouldn’t have figured out my Dad if I hadn’t come here either. Makes it WAY easier. I went NC with him, even before the spath, in response to the idea of the toxicity of these relationships being mitigated by NC.

    I wanted to let you know that Dr. Leedom has asked that all of us who were duped by female spaths to take the survey that lf has put togehter – there is a link for it in the thread, ‘the sociopath’s imperturbability.

    I am very glad that your father is dead, and that your family never has to deal with him again.

  4. Renewedhope says:

    I have already completed the quiz and I hope she finds something in it useful. Looking back at my father..and then getting involved with my S woman for 27 long years..I guess I just joined the club here…about finding a spouse like my father. I see so many similarities in both of them. It just makes me angry all over again. And yes OSAAT; our lives have been a sigh of relief since he died. I no longer feel obligated. It’s like a weight lifted from all of our shoulders and we mention that to each other quite often.

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