To my narcisistic lover who showed me the abyss of emotional abuse

Subject: To my narcisistic lover who showed me the abyss of emotional abuse
From: A survivor
Date: 21 Jul 2016

Dear N
Before we became a couple, I had known you half of my life and I trusted you. You were a friend, not a close friend, but a friend nonetheless. You had been in love with me (or so you said) for more than twenty years. You put me on a pedestal, I felt flattered..
5 years ago I was vulnerable and sad and I felt lost and stuck. You came swooshing in, sweeping me off my feet in a whirlwind courtship. You proposed marriage and an exciting life together, a life you had been waiting for, longing for. I was ready! Finally ready. Your sense of urgency was romantic and it felt so right, you know? I wanted to drastically change my life and you had been in my life so long, a trusted companion and amazing lover. You were exuberant like a child before Christmas and I felt safe because I knew you and trusted you and I was ready for this new life with you. I couldn't wait for it to begin and I went all in.
Little did I know that a nightmare was waiting for me.
Within months I was living with you in Dubai. I was so excited and happy! However, Dubai was the beginning of a long and quick and steady descent into hell. It turned out that your ex-partner and mother of your children wasn't your ex-partner after all but very much your real partner. Your children hated me from the bottom of their hearts and made me responsible for the demise of your relationship with their mother. I was the "whore", the "gold-digger" and "ugly old witch" to your children and their mother and you let them treat me like that. How many times did I beg you to make them stop, to be loyal to me, to us, to tell them the truth, that you had lied to me, telling me that you had been separated for a long time. I felt isolated and hurt and lost and desperate for you to take my side, our side, but you were busy writing emails to your ex, weren't you darling, telling her that you wanted her back. Telling her that I was a mistake, that she was the only woman and most important person in your life, that you would always want to be close to her, that she was the person you trusted most. All of this happened in the first month we were living together. Remember the time darling? When you were still crazy in love with me and told her at the same time that you and I were over, told her we were separated and "just roommates" in Dubai. Remember that? Do you remember my desperation? My sadness, my fear? I had no idea why you weren't loyal to me, to us, and I started fighting back. Of course that made me seem as if I was crazy, unstable, deranged. Do you have any idea how alone I felt? Do you remember my birthday? We had been fighting about your "ex" and you decided to celebrate my birthday without me, leaving me in the house in Dubai without a car and nowhere to go. You were gone for the night and came home drunk. I cried so much, there were days I was unable to get dressed. When you were traveling, there were days and days when I had no idea where you actually were. I couldn't reach you, waited next to the phone for hours and hours. When I managed to get you on the phone, I was usually crying and screaming and you always cut me short, telling me to get a "grip", to "pull myself together" Remember when you instigated a fight with me our second month living together which resulted in you disappearing for several days without me knowing where you were. I knew no one in Dubai, I was isolated and completely stuck. No one knew where you were. I re-read your last message, trying to find hidden meaning or secret clues in it. When you finally decided to contact me again I was beyond grateful just to hear your voice again. It was soft and forgiving, you forgave me, I didn't know what I had done but I didn't care. I had spent days in agony, sleepless nights wondering where you were. After you were home for two days however I found out where you had been: skiing with your "ex", your children and friends. You had had fun skiing and enjoying your family while I was freaking out, begging you in countless emails and text messages to contact me. By the way, that was Valentines Day.
I would have to write a book, or rather several books in order to have enough space to remind you of every sordid detail of your rule during our relationship. You wonder why I call it your "rule"? Well, darling, that's exactly what living with you felt like. I was always in the dark, I had no clue about your plans, actions or life. YOUR life, because it never felt like we were sharing a life. I cried so many tears, I doubted myself, my self-esteem was at the lowest point and I felt trapped in a twilight zone of lies and deceit and fear. Remember when I tried talking to you, begging you to share your plans and actions with me and not leave me in the dark. Your answer was always that it was my fault that you didn't share. That your ex was different and better than me in so many ways. At this point I usually started howling and crying hysterically...I couldn't believe what was happening to me: the man pining for me for over twenty years, yes, you my darling, had lost all interest in me and respect for me. I started believing you, believing that everything was my fault, that my expectations were unrealistic, that I was the reason your daughters called me "whore" to my face. My fault that you kept so many secrets. Remember at the beginning of our journey together? When I said that I felt safe with you? And that I trusted you? Now imagine the exact opposite of feeling safe - living with you was like living in a war zone, you being a war lord who changed his moods and likes and dislikes within minutes. I never knew what to expect and there was a time it was enough for me that you still wanted me in your life even though I was such a disappointment to you and failure as a partner in your eyes. I tried to be better, tried to be what you wanted me to be. I tried to make it work because I was desperate to find that man again, the one I had known for twenty years, my sweet friend. But he was gone and now we both know that he never existed. I was like a prize to you, one you wanted badly, the jewel in the crown. I had resisted you for so long. I was your masterpiece and once you had me, I fell from the pedestal, I was knocked down and there was only dirt. Nothing shiny, just dirt and lots of it. I learned the hard way that you are a pathological liar and cheater, that nothing is ever your fault, that you never take responsibility, that integrity is a foreign concept to you, one you will never understand. I learned the hard way that watching me cry and witnessing my despair filled you with disgust but also with power. I had lost all of my appeal to you because I had proven to be faulty just like the others. I wasn't special after all. You were and are a master in finding and pressing those buttons that really hurt and shook me to my core, that made me curl up like a ball and hide, made me almost catatonic. It made you feel powerful even though at the same time you were disgusted by me, this ugly ball of despair. I was in such a state of a despair, so absolute that I started tearing at my hair like a mad woman and at one point I was on my knees in public, holding on to your leg, begging you not to go and not to leave me. Because one of my greatest fears (I didn't know I had about before you) is abandonment and once you realized that, you went for the kill. You threatened to abandon me almost every other day, whenever you needed to rule me in, to contain my emotional state and my actions.
The final moment of truth came when your daughter arrived one day. You had been lying to her, telling her that I wasn't in your life anymore and when she saw me she was out for blood. Within minutes of her arrival she let me know that you had been cheating on me with her mother in the house I was living in, the bedroom I was sleeping in. That did it. I went numb. It was the moment I realized that not only was our life plastered with your many lies and deceits, it was a lie. All of it was a lie! Darling, the moment of truth. Numbness, shock. The end.
I took me still a long time to get away because I was your prey, your possession. It took me a long time to heal and I'm still healing. I once read that time spent entangled with a narcissist can only be counted in dog years. One year equals seven dog years, you do the maths. I have learned a lot about myself, I had to. I have learned that it takes two to tango and I enabled your abuse and your manipulation of me. I will survive, darling, and I will heal. You will be a sociopath/narcissist forever.