Talk About Marriage banner

1 - 16 of 16 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
7 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Stupid, Stupid, Stupid...at 50 and I finally realize it was me all along. Looking back, my dad was a narcissist and my mother the fixer/codependent. Not a single healthy relationship around, I grew up to do the same. No I didn't put out a sign that said "narcissist wanted for dates, fixing and drama." Again I look back to my 20's and that is what I seemed to attract. Dated four guys before I met the king of them all and married him...so I take full responsibility. This guy didn't put a gun to my head and force me into a relationship in 2000. I did it all on my own but looking back the signs were there.

Like when we went out on our second date and met his friend and his girlfriend for dinner. Fred (not his real name) knew I didn't like lamb but he insisted on a restaurant that seemed to have only lamb dishes. Still, all four of us had a great time and when the waiter brought the check over and I pulled out my wallet to pay for my share and he turned to me and said "oh no, I got this" in front of his friends only to ask me for my half of the check after we had left the restaurant and were walking alone back to my place. That should have clued me in.

Six months later I got pregnant and at 30, I decided to stop messing around and focus on being a mom. Fred stuck around and convinced me that he would make a great dad, that he was honest, hardworking and that he loved me and our child. Even as I walked down the isle I was having second thoughts. I spent the next 20 years working multiple jobs to his one 25 hour-a-week bartending job while slowly convincing me how brilliant he was, how less educated I was. We had another baby three years later, this time I was pulling 80 hour work weeks while he was still bartending.

I was making six figures so he stops working altogether to "take care of our kids" only for me to find him sleeping during the day while our 4 year old roamed our house alone. Over the years he slowly manipulated me into simply fixing all of his problems, paying most of the bills, including fixing his legal problems he got before we were married, paying off his delinquent student loans, back taxes. After I married him I slowly found out Fred had a history of walking away from problems he created without a second thought to consequence. Now I realize he can write a book on the subtle art of manipulation, gaslighting and grifting.

We moved to a small town 8 years into our marriage and I wasn't able to make the kind of money I was making before and we would fight about him going back to work. He did begrudgingly and that is when the verbal abuse started. The put-downs now were also done in public to make me look like an idiot. While I was busy working three jobs, raising our two daughters he was busy working a part time job as a bartender. He never had money to help me pay bills but he always loved going out to eat and buy shots for his friends..did I mention he was also an alcoholic?

Over the years, I fixed this man's credit twice, I paid off his delinquent debt, I worked several jobs to save down payment for the houses that we bought, the cars, I paid 80% of all vacations, put down payments on cars, paid the insurance, healthcare, childcare expenses...everything. All the while, (I just found out in the last six months) he had been trashing me to his family...even subtly manipulating our oldest daughter, friends and family against me. There are too many examples but one that stands out is when the market crashed in '08 and I decided to go back to college. I worked three jobs, went to school full-time and earned two separate degrees. I wanted to be a good example for our daughters. The entire time he was going around telling everybody that he was putting me through school even though he didn't contribute a dime to my college expenses. He paid the rent but I paid for everything else. Even at that point I didn't know what a pathological liar he was.

In his mind, Fred thought that if our daughters loved me, they would somehow love him less. He manipulated them while I was working to pay bills, going to school...and would take them out on day trips and spend his income on junk food and treats. This also applied to our friends. I realize now he controlled our friendships. He is brilliant at finding out what people like and delivering. Everybody thinks he "is such a great guy." Over the years he became my adult child and I now realize he has the worst case of fragile NPD I have ever seen. There is zero guilt, shame or remorse. He is incapable and is so good at deflecting blame, even when confronted with hard documentation he tries to talk his way out of being held accountable.

This is how scummy he turned out to be: three years ago I put $3500 down payment on a car for our oldest daughter. The monthly payment was $180-Since she had just turned 18 she had no credit. I told him I would do the down payment and he would have to take the loan out. Our daughter agreed to make the monthly payment. She did too, every month she gave him money for the car. In the mean time, I got tired of him contributing nothing to our monthly expenses and asked for a separation. Actually, I had asked for a divorce in 2010 but he manipulated me into "waiting for when the girls could handle it."

By this time, he was living in a studio in the same town. I was still paying his car insurance, cell phone, etc. Our daughter kept giving him the car payment money. There were months though that he would just take her money, not make the payment and spend it instead. Eventually, the bank cancelled the loan. She continued to give him money each month for almost six months. Because of COVID, they didn't repo the car. He took her money, never said a word and just spent it. I was looking over our shared checking account and noticed that no car payment had been made in six months and that is how I found out. Our daughter was devastated.

God this is too damn long, I am sorry...I have no one to talk to. I am about to lose everything because of this man. Three years ago I still cared about him enough to put the money together to buy him a restaurant...not getting into details here as to why...but I thought I was doing something good for him and our family...our girls. He promptly ran it into the ground and I recently found out he had been taking cash out of the register nightly and letting most of the staff take food and liquor out of it without paying for it. He also gave his manager number to his staff so they could handle their own comps so he could go home and nap during the day...of course they were going to take advantage of that. There were several hundred thousand dollars that are missing. He blames me for everything...all the time I continued to work three jobs and I was putting all my earning into the restaurant. I still believed all his lies until six months ago when his house of cards started falling apart. I realized he was a pathological liar, manipulator and started confronting him about all the lies he had been telling about me. I closed the restaurant last October and the same week he confessed that his 94 year old landlady was evicting him because he hadn't paid rent. I found out he hadn't paid rent in 10 months. Yet he tried to justify to me and others why he was entitled not to pay rent. I don't know where the missing restaurant money went and now the IRS and state department of revenue is coming down on me.

Betrayal doesn't begin to describe what I feel. My heart breaks for my girls...this man is mean, petty, has no sense of self, his only validation comes from his fan club. He is incapable of holding himself accountable for anything and took off leaving me with a mountain of legal and financial problems to deal with. No remorse, no shame...like the parasite that he was I purged him from my immediate surroundings but not before he inflicted enough damage from which I may not be able to recover. He doesn't care about his kids-well, he pretends to care only when it is convenient for him to use them-to gain sympathy or to manipulate them in some way. I am heartbroken. Sorry this is so long. He has been homeless/couch surfing and grifting from well meaning friends and family since last October and calls our kids to continue to try to manipulate them and now the walls are caving in on me so I can't breathe. And I am tired...for 18 out of 20 years I have been working 80-100 hours a week. He had convinced me somehow that this is what I should be doing....but now I am so tired. Like REALLY tired.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
221 Posts
You can beat yourself to death for not figuring it out sooner, but it won't change anything. All you can do now is move forward. You still have a lot of life left ahead of you, at least I hope so, since I'm 50 as well. It sounds like you know this already, but don't let yourself be fooled anymore by anything he says.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
779 Posts
I like Reagan's quote "trust but verify". Usually, the person trusted doesn't even have to know if you're "verifying" in the background.

Seems like you've just repeatedly given trust... maybe work on the "verify".
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
590 Posts
Your husband and my first husband could be brothers. I got out a lot sooner than you did, with one child; #2 had three children before she showed him the door, but he devastated #3; he left that time and she was too broke to even put the house on the market. #4 was smarter; she didn't marry him and she kept her money to herself. He died from ALS a few years ago, but there was a #5 possibility somehow. He nearly caused several divorces during his couch surfing days in between #'s.

I am so sorry you are going through this.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
7 Posts
Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Yeah, you got played big time. But at least it ends now instead of next year, or sometime in the next two decades, when it’s an even worse story.
I know, I have days when I beat myself up to tears. I have a degree in Psychology too!! And the worst part is, I live in a very small town. At the grocery store? Someone is there to give the dirty looks. Going out to eat? Someone is there giving me dirty looks. I am the cold-hearted ***** who took away everything from him after everything he did for me. Leaving is not an option. I refuse to skunk off... I tell you what...no way in hell I'm getting involved with anyone again ever. I am a co-dependent and a fixer and it will be years before that will change.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
7 Posts
Discussion Starter · #9 ·
I like Reagan's quote "trust but verify". Usually, the person trusted doesn't even have to know if you're "verifying" in the background.

Seems like you've just repeatedly given trust... maybe work on the "verify".
I know exactly what you mean! I actually pulled his credit file before I agreed to marry him. Nothing..he had no credit, no history nothing. I thought at the time that no news was better than bad news. Little did I know. after I married him, that's when the shoes began to drop. The delinquent student loan, the back taxes, the lawsuits. I should have known that a 33 year old man with no credit history= trouble.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
7 Posts
Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Your husband and my first husband could be brothers. I got out a lot sooner than you did, with one child; #2 had three children before she showed him the door, but he devastated #3; he left that time and she was too broke to even put the house on the market. #4 was smarter; she didn't marry him and she kept her money to herself. He died from ALS a few years ago, but there was a #5 possibility somehow. He nearly caused several divorces during his couch surfing days in between #'s.

I am so sorry you are going through this.
Good lord! My instinct told me to leave over 10 years ago but that Catholic guilt coupled with the mother's guilt and his manipulation.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
7 Posts
Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Look on the bright side. It can only get better.
If I can survive the next six months I will be ok. I had an idea/dream that I put on hold so I could make his dream come true. This proved disastrous and now I owe over $800k. As soon as I cut him off and closed the restaurant I bought for him I re-focused on my dream and it is a success now. However, it may be too little too late...the bank doesn't care about what happened and they are trying to foreclose (business loan matured a few months ago and they refused to re up it for another term demanding I pay them the full amount). I am doing everything I can to hold on to it so I can save it for my girls. It is generating excellent revenue but not enough to write a $500k check:/ I can't refi because my credit was shot when I closed the restaurant. I have a good attorney but it's all too overwhelming and I am so tired of working 7 days a week. I'm just griping though, I know I'll get my ass up tomorrow and Sunday and be the landscaper, house keeper, laundry woman..I also do photography on the side so I'll be working that too this weekend.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
7 Posts
Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Good lord! My instinct told me to leave over 10 years ago but that Catholic guilt coupled with the mother's guilt and his manipulation.
What I want to know is who raised these men? Did you have a good relationship with your ex's mom? My ex mother-in-law never picked up the phone to talk to me, ask about her grand-daughters, nothing. She is a strange bird. In the 20 years I was involved with her son she visited twice (she lives in NJ and we were in Fl and the mountains)-
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
7 Posts
Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Yeah, you got played big time. But at least it ends now instead of next year, or sometime in the next two decades, when it’s an even worse story.
Oh, I know...I am an idiot for sure. I can't believe I dropped $400k on a restaurant for this A hole. I could have done so much better putting that money elsewhere and our kids would have a secured financial future.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
590 Posts
Mine was the only boy, with three sisters who also gave into his "needs". Interestingly, she spent her life moaning about how hard she had it because her ex-husband never paid child support. When I applied for a divorce, she told him "you don't pay her any child support!!!".

His #3 was the one who bought him a restaurant, by the way. I don't know how long it took for him to run it into the ground. My daughter called her once, just to let her know that she knew how he was. #3 told my daughter that she always knew when he was getting bored because he would start reading help-wanted ads for various cities. Jobs for her, of course, not him; she was a microbiologist.
 
1 - 16 of 16 Posts
Top