I am not sure why I am still shocked when people choose to blame the psychopath’s victim. I have heard that this is normal from others who have suffered from an encounter with psychopath, but I still get a bit shocked each time it happens to me. From friends, to family, to the courts, to complete strangers – people seem to want to find something wrong with me to somehow better explain to themselves how I ended up being fooled by my psychopath ex. It has been happening so long that sometimes I find myself wondering there is something wrong with me that made me ignore the red flags and believe the completely fantastic story he was telling me.
This week alone, I have experienced both friends and family trying to psycho analyze me and question how I ended up with such a monster as the father of my son. I am not sure how to respond to people when they ask me absurd questions or decide that it was somehow my fault that I ended up being conned by Luc. Here are some of the things I have heard over the past year (the first two were said just this week):
1) “CQ, really…how did this happen? What were you thinking? I mean, please don’t feel as if I am blaming you…but how did you not see this coming?” - An old friend
2) ”I know what happened….I think CQ must like to be controlled by an abusive man.” - A family member (behind my back)
3) ”Let’s be honest…you wanted a bad boy…so you are now getting what you asked for and deserve. My daughter, who is your age, would never be in this situation because she doesn’t like bad boys. She is marrying a man who wears suits and collared shirts.” - My Lawyer
4) ”You are not without fault here CQ, what you saw in this man…well, it must have been fairy dust…and now the fairy dust has disappeared and you are going to have to deal with him for at least the next 18 years.” - The Judge in our Custody War
5) ”You didn’t have a problem with him touching you, so you shouldn’t be so bothered that he is now touching your son.”
- Family member
The hardest thing for people to understand, it seems, is how a person can be conned by someone who is so clearly dysfunctional. My response to that is, “when a person’s full time job is to learn everything about you – your hopes, dreams, weaknesses – in order to exploit and con you – you will likely end up conned.” I have used the analogy before of the frog and the boiling water and in this case I can’t think of another analogy that would prove my point any better. Psychopaths control the boiling water. They know that if they threw their victims into a pot of boiling water, most people would jump right out screaming and cursing at them. Instead, they slowly bring the water to boil with the intension of burning their victims alive.
Every time I walk into court, I feel like I am holding my heart inside of my chest with my bear hands. This process, this war, with Luc has torn me apart from the inside out. Luc’s boiling water effectively ripped me apart, but sometimes I feel as if the judgement and misunderstanding I receive from those I love (and society at large) is worse. I went from being a beautiful, self confident, intelligent, and successful woman – to a victim of a completely misunderstood abuse. Luc burned me alive, but society continues to blame me as if I willingly jumped into a burning fire along side satan.
I want my son to know his mama as the woman I was – but wiser. I dread the day when my son might join society and make judgements about what happened with his father. Will he understand how his father used my kindness against me? Will he understand why I tried to hold the relationship together even when it seemed clear to the rest of the world that it was a hopeless situation? Will he understand why I fought so hard to protect him from a man I once trusted?
It’s easy to think about all the horrible things Luc is and ignore the things that attracted me to this man. While many of the things that attracted me to Luc were not real (most of them were completely fake actually), there are good qualities in Luc. (Yes, you read that correctly) Despite the fact that my family refuses to see anything of Luc in baby boy, this is not the stance I will take as baby boy’s mother. Luc wasn’t born evil – he made choices. He took his talents and used them for evil. For example, being charming is not a bad thing if you don’t use it to manipulate and control others. Being a good actor isn’t a bad thing as long as you use it on stage to entertain instead of to lie and cheat.
I love baby boy for everything that he is and that means that I accept the fact that he is the product of what now feels like a violent emotional rape. I refuse to make my son feel bad for carrying half of the psychopath’s genes and I also refuse to lie to him. So while I kick myself every day for not paying attention to the now obvious red flags of Luc’s psychopathy, and I suffer through the constant judgements I receive from others, I would do it all over again for baby boy. I didn’t choose what Luc really is – but I will choose baby boy every day for the rest of my life.