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Married to a sociopathic pastor for 55 years

Spath TalesEditor’s note: Lovefraud received the following email from a reader whom we’ll call “Caroltta.”

I am 72 … was married 12/60 … found out in 1/14 my husband, a pastor for 45 yrs., committed adultery @ every pastorate. In fact, he says he has no idea how many x’s & does not remember all the women.

There was incest involved in his promiscuous life. He considered divorce for many of his women, but knew he could not preach after that, so his last girlfriend convinced him to murder me & they had a plan which did not work out because I told him I was retiring & he could come with me or not.

He has been afraid to do anything, because it would mean no further contact with his children & grandchildren.

I have good reason to believe he committed adultery the day after we married.

He attended sex parties with other girls in high school including his sister. He joined a swinger’s club @ one point.

My children told me he would tell them I was crazy. My three children had suspicions for a long time, but he preached against sexual infidelities & criticized other men to the point that I could not think evil of him.

I have warned him about some of the women he had affairs with & he told me they laughed about it.

I had breast cancer & his girlfriend ordered him not to touch me because she did not want a staph infection. He did not.

Looking back I have put 2 & 2 together & realize his evilness.

I am under the care of a psychiatrist, in therapy, spent 3 weeks in-hospital [a week on the psych floor under suicide watch] & have a dozen or more electro-convulsive treatments.

I miss terribly what I thought we had.

Oh, we can’t afford two places to live, so I have to live in the same house with him & take care of him. He is very sick & feeble.

He is very much a coward or he would have left me a long time ago or at least never married me. He needed someone he could con, lie to, control & manipulate.

My therapist says he is a typical sociopath & con man.

 



8 Comments on "Married to a sociopathic pastor for 55 years"

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  1. AnnettePK says:

    This is heartbreaking and I am so sorry you are going through this at a time of life when you could be enjoying your retirement. I hope that you will be able to recover from the shock and enjoy your children and grandchildren. It sounds like you are blessed in that your ex has not turned your children against you.

    My ex psychopath is sexually perverse – porn addict, cross dresser, pedophile, and he was a preacher for awhile. We married later in life and separated within a few years. In my experience, spaths are not so much cowards because they are doing exactly what they want to be doing. A coward would be a man who wants to do right but is afraid to. Spaths are doing exactly what they want to do.

    Keep in mind that whatever you know about what your ‘husband’ did, it is likely the tip of the iceberg. They are liars about everything all the time. When they ‘confess’ something it is not for the purpose of telling the truth and changing their motives to become honest about everything. It is to get something they want, manipulate someone, whatever.

    As time passes and you recover from the initial shock somewhat, and you think things through, you may reconsider your decision to continue to live with him. It may ultimately be best for you. But if it is better for you emotionally, psychologically, physically, and spiritually, to live separately, consider that you don’t owe him anything and there may be ways you can make it work financially. Consider whether his frailty is an act. My ex spath feigned weakness but when it suited him he had plenty of strength. You might consult a good attorney to see what your options are. You might get more than one legal opinion.

    Take care.



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    • AnnettePK says:

      Why is he not in jail for attempted murder of you? Consider if it would be better for you not to be the caretaker of a man who tried to murder you?

      Was the incest he committed against a minor? If so, he should be in jail for that, too.



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      • AnnaF says:

        Carolatta,

        It is always such a tragedy to read how sociopathic spouses can con us for so many years, especially behind the religious cover-up and peacock suit of “leading the flock.”

        I grew up in the Catholic Church and attended Catholic school. I witnessed many such “con jobs”, often between priests & nuns masquerading as “holier than thou” to us children and everyone else. It is my experience that religion is often used as a convenient “social front” to hide all kinds of problems or addictions, including sexual. It is also a highly patriarchal structure, subjugating women to be “good, loyal wives” while men, even pastors, do as they please with extramarital sex.

        I left the church in high school, not being able to tolerate such religious bigotry in my life anymore (after a pedophile priest tried to seduce me). Although I married & divorced my sociopath (that is another story), my (still very religious) sister re-married her brutal sociopath after 20 years of divorce, even after her children threatened to leave home because of his verbal/physical abuse! She said her “faith” brought him back.

        While my sister can do as she wishes in her own life, I feel that all of us women would do well to reflect on entrenched religious beliefs that hold us hostage to male dominance and control. We must never forget how religion was once the political rule, stating that we women were “soulless creatures” incapable of reading or writing! Such male dominance once controlled our lives and minds until we started to fight for women’s rights.

        In our 21st century, women still have to fight off entrenched religious/male oppression! Carolatta is a very sad example of how this religious system benefits men! Even though her pastor-husband cheated on her for 55 years, and planned “her murder” with his lover… she still felt responsible for his health problems, & wanted to care for him?

        Is there any wonder why men work hard to keep religious fundamentalism alive? And why they want to put down & suppress women’s rights? With a renewal of fundamentalism spreading like wildfire around our country, we women need to stay on high alert to its inherent (and dangerous) sociopathic agenda toward us!



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  2. stronginthecity says:

    Caroltta,
    Thank you for sharing your story as more and more women are coming forward with their stories because of websites such as Lovefraud.
    How are you doing now?
    Are the 2 of you still living together?
    Are you continuing your BH therapy?
    How do you find the strength to let this man live with you?
    Sorry for all the questions.
    Stronginthecity



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  3. OpalRose says:

    Hi Carlotta – thank you for sharing your story – you are not alone. I have been in a marriage to a sociopath for 33 years now. When I posted my story a few years ago here on Love Fraud, one of the most helpful and comforting comments I received was that it is totally possible to have a long-term relationship with a disordered person and have no idea for a long, long time what we are up against. And the shock that comes with seeing them clearly was overwhelming for me as it was for you. My heart goes out to you.

    I am glad that your children see through him and that his heinous behavior in plotting your death did not play out. I completely understand having to stay in the house for now although becoming his caregiver in your retirement must be crazy making. It has helped me to have emotional support so that around my husband I can be detached and calm. Depending on your situation, there may be an opportunity to have a caregiver come to the house so you can get a break (Council on Aging has info). I realize he could manipulate the caregivers though, so maybe a male caregiver could be an option.

    I worked through the finances of leaving my husband with a dilemma resulting – if I leave, I will have to pay a substantial sum of money plus part of my retirement pension which would go directly to enabling and subsidizing his dark activities (no the courts don’t care that he is engaged in dark behaviors). If I stay, I will need to “manage” the situation – somewhat like you are having to “manage” your husband for now. Perhaps when I retire I can “disappear.” So sorry you are going through this experience and I pray for your release from this horrible person.

    I completely understand and you are not alone. Take care.



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  4. Jan7 says:

    Caroltta, your story is heartbreaking. The shock of their crazy behavior and their lying words rock us to our core. I too am so glad your children see through his sociopathic behavior. That is a true blessing because most times the sociopath is able to create such a smear campaign and brain wash the children away from the healthy minded parent.

    When I was with my husband I felt like I had no options, but in fact I had countless options of leaving him. Because he had emotionally, mentally and physically exhausted me I felt stuck in my marriage. As the abuse became worse I literally had no energy I became bed ridden when I was not working. My h (now ex) isolated me from family/friends so this was another factor which made me feel like I was the problem not him. Throw in the religious beliefs that you have to “work on your marriage” and “marriage is hard work” I felt like I needed to keep working on my marriage. I knew something was not right with my ex but could not put a finger on exactly what other then he was crazy. Of course marriage counseling did not help because he was able to manipulate the counselor away from the truth = I was married to a sociopath!!

    As the abuse became worse and his cheating became blatant I finally started an Exit Plan out of my marriage even though I had no idea there was a formal name to my escape plan (domestic abuse exit plan). My ex h controlled all our finances so I would only have about $10 in cash at any given time even though we had each high paying jobs. For three weeks I took money out of my h’s wallet secretly and hide it under the guest room bed until I had $300 all total. I then packed up the car and drove across country to a relatives home where I knew I would be safe. During the trip I slept in the car because I was afraid I would not have enough gas money as my ex had cut off my credit card sensing that I was about to leave him.

    What I realized after I escaped to my relatives home was I had options that I did not have to endure all of those 12 years of hell. That I could have left sooner, that I could have asked for help out from family, friends but most importantly my local Domestic abuse violence center.

    So I want to pose a question to you?

    Do you know you have options out of this abusive marriage?



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    • NoMoreWool says:

      I like the part of your story where you financed the cash for your escape directly from his wallet. I am guessing either he carried around plenty of cash to pay for his “playtime” or he was too irresponsible with money to realize anything was missing.



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  5. Jan7 says:

    Nomorewool, yes, he travelled weekly and carried large amounts of cash for his “playtime” although at the time he told me that he needed cash “just in case” a place did not take credit card. I thought that it did not make sense but when you are in their brain fog you just dont want to argue so you/they turn your head with their manipulative words. In reality I was just taking my money as he controlled all of the finances at the time even though I worked.

    I took the money out slowly so it was not obvious. He would have noticed if I took the $300 out at one time but small amounts every few days he did not notice. I hid the money in the guest room because I thought if he noticed he would tear our room apart looking for the money. I was in such fear that he would find out…such a scary time when I look back on it. At the time I was so brain washed & mind controlled & isolated I did not think or realize I could have called my family or ask friends for money to leave him.

    This is why you have to open your mind up to options of leaving when you are in a abusive relationship. Reaching out for help from friends, family & the domestic abuse center is a must and is a much better & safer way to leave.

    Caroltta feels financially trapped. But there is help for senior citizens with government financial aid for housing and if she divorces her abuser she will be a portion of his social security check. So financially she maybe able to leave her abuser and find a safe nice place on her own.

    It’s important for her to also know that she has ZERO obligation to take care of this evil frail man he made his own bed so to speak and will have to find help on his own. Also abusers will pretend to be sicker then they really are to control their victims and pity them the victim into taking care of them so that the victim is to busy running around trying to meet all the demands of the abuser to think how to get out of the abusive relationship.

    I hope Caroltta calls the National Domestic Violence Hotline and ask for financial assistance and from there she can call the National government toll free line to ask for the government office of seniors and that office should be able to guide her to government assistance for seniors housing program.



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