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LETTER TO LOVEFRAUD: My ex-wife, the sociopath (Part 1)

Editor’s note: The following story was sent to Lovefraud by a man whom we’ll call “Anthony.” He believes his ex-wife is a sociopath. He tells his story in great detail, so it will be  serialized, appearing today and over the next three days. The story refers to spiritual concepts. Please read Lovefraud’s statement on Spiritual Recovery.

Meeting the Perfect Woman

I met her through a mutual friend one evening at a local restaurant. I found her strikingly attractive, and we made a plan to have dinner the following week, which we did. I was “hooked” fairly quickly, and I remember thinking many times how I must have been the luckiest man alive to have this gorgeous and intelligent woman want to be with me.

She had separated from her 2nd husband about 8 months prior, and was waiting for the 12 months of separation to file for divorce. When I asked what happened, she told me that he was irresponsible and immature, and had started staying out with friends and not coming home. She was not sure that he was being faithful. She explained that he was mean and hateful in a conversation to her children, so she had it, and left. She assured me that he did not want to work on the marriage (I wanted to be with her, but did not want to be a reason for the divorce), and that he was finished with her. I remember thinking what a fool this guy was for letting this incredible woman walk away from him.

She was intelligent, and appeared to be humble in spite of her striking beauty. I learned that her first husband left her with 3 small children to be with his lover about 16 years earlier. They eventually married, and are still together today. I remember wondering what a lunatic he must have been to leave this incredible woman, and the mother of his children on top of that! I did not even think about the possibility that she was not really who I saw on the outside. I wanted to believe that she was what she portrayed herself to be: a good woman, who happened to be incredibly beautiful. She was what I thought of as the perfect woman! I had no reason to believe otherwise, but the truth is that I put blinders on very early in the “relationship,” and did not want to know. This was in spite of the obvious relational dysfunction in her life, and the current state of family relationships with her oldest daughter, mother, two siblings, and their families (5 nieces and nephews). They all live in the same city basically, but there are no relationships with her to speak of with any of them.

What could I possibly have been thinking? Looking back, it was very obvious that there was something wrong, but I continued to see her beauty, and wanted very much to love and to be loved. What could be better than to have that with an incredibly attractive and charming woman? She knew where I was in life, and what I was seeking in a partner, and used it to sell herself as a normal loving woman who was a victim of irresponsible men. I bought it, thinking that my Christian values and my loving heart will rescue her. I would not cheat on her and leave her, nor would I treat her in any way close to what she described with her second husband. I would ultimately show her that there are good men in the world who would treat her the way a woman deserves to be treated, and I would grow old loving and caring for her.

The Harbinger

A short while into the “relationship” (maybe 2-3 weeks) on a Saturday afternoon in late January of 2008, was the event that should have prevented this toxic “relationship” from continuing any further. It was what I now understand to be “the harbinger,” that I foolishly ignored. I was clueless to the possibility that this woman might be deceiving me.

We were working around her house when her cell phone rang. She looked at it, and said “Oh,…that’s just Chris from work. He probably just wants to gloat that Tennessee (college football) won. He’s a big fan. I’ll talk to him later,…” My heart sank a bit in my chest, and my gut knotted up. I knew this was not a good sign! I gently expressed my concern about a male co-worker’s personal call to my very attractive girlfriend, and she immediately turned the situation around, saying that I had a problem, that it was normal that she had a friendship with a (married) man from her office, that she sometimes spent one-on-one time with him over lunches, and that she was NOT going to change her relationship with “Chris” because I had issues.

I have been in 3 or 4 past relationships with cheaters, and have seen many other “friendships” in and out of the workplace where the parties were obviously involved in emotional and physical infidelity. I know that this happens even more often than many people realize.

Now here is an incredibly attractive woman getting a personal call on Saturday from a married man from her work. If that wasn’t enough, the fact that she did not answer the phone in front of me made me feel even more uneasy. Furthermore, looking back, I can see that her reaction to my concern was not the reaction that one would expect from a person who was truthful and honest and not hiding anything. There was no empathy, compassion, or hint of understanding for what I may have felt. There was no acknowledgement of, or consideration for, my feelings. There was only immediate defensiveness, blame shifting, and denial. Nothing that you would expect from an innocent and healthy person, but exactly what you’d expect from someone who is deceptive and hiding something.

She tried to ease my mind by an explanation about how “Chris” was very unattractive. She told me about how he was a good “decent man,” (she showed emotions when she said that, starting to cry a little,…what I now understand was projection unto me) and that they have been friends for years. We talked about how she thinks that he is sort of strange, and how he has all of this retro furniture in his house. She went into detail about this furniture and his attachment to 1950s and 1960 memorabilia. Many of these pieces of information were indeed true, because I later verified them. There was truth mixed into her stories, so this made the overall story more believable. (I later learned that this is a common tool that deceptive people use.)

During our conversation about “Chris” at her office (and subsequent times throughout our “relationship”), she told me the story about how it was for her to go through being cheated on by her first husband, left with 3 small children for the other woman, and how she ultimately grew stronger from it. I will never forget the conversation, and we had this conversation many times after this. She spoke about how it taught her what it feels like to be cheated on, and how she’d “NEVER do that to another woman,” and how she’d “think about the family” that she was destroying before she would cheat. She really poured it on, and because there was cheating in my first marriage, and how much I had grown to despise the evil of deceit, deception, and unfaithfulness in the world, this is something that I wanted desperately to hear, and I believe that she knew that. She insisted that she had good morals, and was very convincing. Again, there was truth mixed into her story, which made the story believable to me.

This was a long conversation that we had after her unanswered phone call. The end result was that I conceded and let it drop, but I could not shake the feeling that something wasn’t right. I talked to a trusted friend about it, and got well-meaning, but ultimately bad, advice. I was advised that it was OK for this “friendship” to be, and I was left to feel like I was indeed insecure, and that was the source of the issue. My friend was not considering the more important aspects of this interaction: the blame-shifting and total lack of empathy or compassion. Furthermore, there was no evidence of this “friendship” with “Chris.” If it were an innocent friendship, there would have been evidence of a healthy relationship in her life. This might have been dinners and other events with his family, or something like that. Never in our “relationship” was this present. Never were we invited to his house for dinner, to meet him and his wife somewhere for a drink or something. Nothing! Yet, “Chris” was such a good friend that she obviously had a close and personal relationship with him in and around her office, and he’d even call her on a Saturday about a football game. It just did not add up. As time went on, and as this became obvious, it became clearer and clearer that something was very wrong with this “friendship,” and that there was likely deception in and around this. I remember thinking that, if my suspicion was true, that it would come to light. I chose to believe her at that time, but I never completely rested, and I began paying attention to what was happening, telling myself that I must be wrong to suspect, but never feeling that I was. There was just too much pointing to something under the surface that was very wrong. Things just did not quite add up, and as time went on, I became more and more convinced that I was being deceived.

I knew in my gut that there was something wrong with what transpired that evening, but I choose to let my boundaries be blown away, and I choose to ignore what God was telling me in my gut. I made a note of the details of this event, and I did chew it over and over as the “relationship” progressed, especially as more “cracks in her pot” became evident. As more time went on in the “relationship,” it became more and more clear that this was indeed a significant event and nothing at all as she passed it off to be. It was the early signs that she had interests in more than work in her office, and this became more obvious as time passed.

This event was absolutely a harbinger, but I foolishly ignored it, choosing to not see past the smoke and mirrors. I plowed ahead blindly, believing that I not only found a woman who really loved me and who shared Christian values, but she was an incredibly beautiful woman to top it all off. I believed that she was a gift from God, and I honestly felt like the luckiest man alive. What more could I ever ask for?

 Part 2 – Relational emptiness beneath the charade



11 Comments on "LETTER TO LOVEFRAUD: My ex-wife, the sociopath (Part 1)"

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  1. lebo says:

    Anthony,
    Very powerful story. I only wish you had given more examples of her sociopathy. I do not doubt she was one based upon what you said, but would have liked to hear more.

    I was struck by how she “mixed in the truth” with the lies thus making them more believable. In my own experience, this was the case. The woman I was involved in a “relationship” with–and the quotes are very appropriate since it was not a real relationship–did this constantly.

    Charm and beauty have become things for me to be wary of, rather than attracted to.

    I learned from my own experience, and it is evident in yours, that most people want to believe in goodness of another. Thus, sociopathic people, especially if they are beautiful and charming, are able to look like saints when in fact the opposite is true.

    Thanks for your article,
    Lebo



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    • tnvictim says:

      It appears that all sociopaths “mix in some truth” with their lies. The one I knew and was involved with did all the time. My best friend always called it “just enough truth” when I told him about her and the things she told me. I’ve even written a novel now that I hope to get published one day with that title: “Just Enough Truth”. The novel is purely fictional, but contains a lot of the things she did when I knew her, but not nearly all the things, or even exactly the way she did things.

      They love to prey on honest people; usually someone who is well respected in their community, too, and someone they perceive to have at least enough means to support them for a time. They love to exert their power and influence on you and then take you for whatever they can until you finally have enough and then they will move on to their next victim.

      They have absolutely no conscience, or guilt with what they do, and if pressed, it’s always the fault of someone else. Hopefully, all of us on this site have learned our lessons and are moving on with our lives better educated in how to spot these people and how to stay away from them.

      Three years beyond my last involvement with the one I knew, I have now married a wonderful woman who is not nearly as pretty, or as young, but who is definitely NOT a sociopath. She loves me for me and not for what I can do for her. We live modestly as I am still paying off bills I accumulated while with the sociopath I knew, but we are happy and life is back in control now. Through the grace of God and my wife, I’ve moved past my experience with one, but she left me with bills I won’t get completely paid off for almost five more years yet.

      I admit that I was stupid to do a lot of the things I did for her, and realize it now. At the time, however, she was clever enough to make me think I was doing the right thing and that everything would be okay. She would marry me and help me pay off everything she had gotten from me. She even produced a phony certificate of deposit that looked very real with which she proposed using to pay me back almost all she “owed” me. I’m still not sure exactly how she pulled off getting one printed that appeared so genuine, but it was an effective way of getting me to give her money I never would have otherwise.

      We all do stupid things when with these people; it is their business and nature to lead us into doing such things. They are good at it; very good. Countless people are conned, schemed and heartbroken from the things these people cause us to do every day. It’s a shame, but knowing that people exist at least helps to keep us from making the same mistakes twice.

      I hope you and everyone else on this site understand what happened to you and never allow anyone else to do something similar to you ever again.

      God bless.

      Jerry



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  2. Hopesprings says:

    Hi Anthony,
    I believe that my son is in a relationship with a woman like this. I have tried to talk to him about her behavior but he feels she is perfect. Is there any advice you can give me?
    Thank you so much.



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    • Anthony says:

      Hopesprings,

      I’m sorry to hear that your son is involved with a woman that you feel might be disordered. I did not want to believe that my woman was anything except what she portrayed herself to be. I put blinders on early in the relationship, and it took a good while for me to even start to question what I was feeling that was not right in the “relationship.” I honestly believed that I had found the perfect woman, and I did not want to let that fantasy go, even while the red flags were piling up.

      If your son is involved with one of these predators, she has already been able to put him under her spell. I’ve read many people advising to just stay out of it, because the target will resent you if you try to talk some sense into them. They will not believe what you are telling them about this person, because they have already been hooked (idealized). They say that you must just give it time, and let the “relationship” run its course. Eventually, the mask will slip, but not before the potential for great damage.

      I know that this is not acceptable since this is your son, so maybe you could educate him in some way about this, so that he might pay attention to the red flags sooner. I know that in my case, red flags were present from the beginning. I just did not want to see them. All I wanted to see was her beauty and charm. Had I known about the reality of these people then, I believe that I would have stopped very early on, questioned the key things that I should have, and I would have seen the truth that I was being deceived from the start. Without this knowledge, it is so much easier to be sucked in.

      I wish you well with this,

      “Anthony”



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  3. Anthony,

    I too believed the best in my husband even when an incident would occur that didn’t “feel” right. He would come up with the most believable story – again much of it true so that the WHOLE thing was accepted.

    He was quite friendly with a woman (call her Mary) at work and would tell me how they jogged together at lunch (Paula Broadwell comes to mind). He would tell me how badly this woman wanted to be a mother, Really wanted children but her husband just didn’t. I would simply say, “Doesn’t this seem like something they would’ve discussed and agreed on BEFORE marriage? My former spouse said his advice was “accidents happen.” In other words get pregnant on purpose – even though your husband doesn’t want kids.Now I see that as a cold view of his selfish attitude. Anyway this woman would also send us a Christmas card for years too……..We had 3 young children at the time he was telling me all this and I was overwhelmed with the kids since he was minimal help as well as full house chores, and I worked part time out of the home.

    Fast forward about 15 years (yes 15) spath former husband has now changed jobs twice. I realize finally that he is a liar and cheater, but Mary comes back to mind. I pull out folders of old phone records and low and behold Mary is being called. I get the guts to call Mary. Mary proceeds to tell me how sorry she is that my marriage didn’t work out but that spath talked quite highly of all I had done for him and his family. Let’s just say Mary brought up topics that spath barely told me about. I was floored!!!!!!!! Mary knew my former husband better in some ways than I did. When I suggested to Mary that it was apparent to me that she also was dishonest and had crossed the line of a normal co-worker she couldn’t get off the phone fast enough.

    I am sure that Mary was having sexual relations with my former husband now. She – in addition to many other women. Spath later told me when we were counseling/trying to “save” the marriage that Mary had suggested a counselor to try. Even more telling that he is still in touch with Mary.
    Scumbags – both of them. May they ROT in hell!!

    I also felt like your friend described… who can fault someone for having a friend at work? Now I know it needs to be very open and transparent and even then when of opposite sex it could be a bit worrisome.

    Heal from this Anthony and I know it’s hard to trust again, but we must try if we are to find real love.



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  4. known says:

    Sociopaths will do anything for money



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  5. somebodysdream says:

    OMG I can’t believe he married her. I was married to the male counterpart who would give women his phone # right behind my literal back when I turned around. I could not believe that those women would take it, seeing that I wore a ring and that he was with me.
    He reminded me that he did a noble thing by paying the tuition of “college strippers” while I am still paying off student loans.
    His mother, aunt, grandmother and sister encourage and facilitate affairs with married women, pole dancers and, “wink wink, nod nod” vulnerable boys of their victims.
    Spath goes to church every Sunday, visits his mom at the Assisted Living every day (where he grooms wealthy victims) and lives in a mansion (with the proceeds and retirement money from the prev victim) decorated with trailer furniture, that the ex left after she feathered her nest, until a new rich widow or divorcee fixes the spaths unfortunate marriage he had to endure with the ex-gold digger.
    In Anthonys case he would have been better off with the devil he knew and not looked coveted one that that was even more of a challenge to take him down.



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  6. Soulaflame says:

    My man, my heart goes out to you. I don’t log in so much, but she almost sounded like my ex…I had to comment.
    I am glad you know where you are in this and where she is too.
    I imagine some might flame me for this but; keep praying for sociopaths in your life. I know they have a problem, its a big problem, but at the same time, they are part of us. It is best for us not to live with them, not to be blinded by them, but at the same time we have to show compassion as we can in real situations.

    I would imagine that the Christ would consider these people as the most “in need” of Christ’s love. Obviously that doesn’t mean to get sucked in, but to look at it from a divine point of view instead of from a subjective boyfriend/girlfriend one.

    I left my ex with our kids in tow. My ex is a beautiful, extremely charming woman….i guess they all sound the same.

    I am truly sorry for your experience. I am glad that you have found faith, run with it. Keep away from the politics, keep away from the dogma, keep away from the myriad evangelists and teachers of Christianity and keep away from the religion aspects and just cling onto your faith…let no woman (beauty or intelligent or charming or otherwise), nor money nor anything else rob you of that. It’s worth more than everything else this world offers.

    Good luck on your new life.



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  7. somebodysdream says:

    OMG I can’t believe he married her. I was married to the male counterpart who would give women his phone # right behind my literal back when I turned around. I could not believe that those women would take it, seeing that I wore a ring and that he was with me.
    He reminded me that he did a noble thing by paying the tuition of “college strippers” while I am still paying off student loans.
    His mother, aunt, grandmother and sister encourage and facilitate affairs with married women, pole dancers and, “wink wink, nod nod” vulnerable boys of their victims.
    Spath goes to church every Sunday, visits his mom at the Assisted Living every day (where he grooms wealthy victims) and lives in a mansion (with the proceeds and retirement money from the prev victim) decorated with trailer furniture, that the ex left after she feathered her nest, until a new rich widow or divorcee fixes the spaths unfortunate marriage he had to endure with the ex-gold digger.
    In Anthonys case he would have been better off with the devil he knew and not coveted one that that was even more of a challenge to take him down.



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  8. SPacific says:

    Sociopaths. There is nothing that can prepare most for the destruction that these twisted individuals can inflict on a trusting, caring soul. They manipulate, they lie, they cheat, they dupe, and play you for the fool. It’s all just a game they enjoy playing…..to win. Through love-bombing and other techniques, they re-wire your brain and addict you to the lie: that they “love” you. Nothing could be farther from the truth. They are cold blooded and heartless reptiles who have no feelings, nor empathy, and no remorse. In retrospect, and even knowing all of this, those who have been through this kind of relationship know just how emotionally devastating this can be. Time and understanding will eventually help the healing process, but not before you experience the hurt, the pain, and the suffering caused by these parasites.



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    • Anthony says:

      Absolutley a perfect description, SPacific! Something like this could only come from someone who also has endured. I’m sorry about that.

      Cold booded heartless reptiles? Definately! I believe that they have black holes instead souls.

      May God bless you!



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