You remember this post, where I lamented about why a woman would date a guy who meticulously destroyed her life? I talked to her this week. She finally got the guy out of her life, but it wasn’t easy.
I was intentionally vague about details, I don’t want anyone to be able to identify this lady (Let’s call her Lady and the asshole we’ll simply call Asshole). What she endured is awful enough already. I got some mail from readers who sympathized, some offered useful advice, it also generated a wee bit of hate mail in which I was the bad guy in one way or another. Judging by that, I’ll stand by the decision to keep things vague. Asshole was basically a black-hole, emotionally and financially. I’ve known Lady since grade school, she’s not the kind of person who used to put up with this shit, not even close, that’s part of why her friends and family stumbled around and didn’t know how to handle it or help her. I don’t know if we could have.
Asshole was the classic predator. He separated her from people who genuinely cared about her, a practice I’m told is common among these kinds of pricks. It leaves the person less able to cope with any games the predator plays, easier to manipulate, more in their power. At one point Lady lost her home, thanks in large part to Asshole who preyed on her to the point of wiping out her savings while helping to get her fired. So, as a consequence, Lady ended up storing some stuff on Asshole’s property. At some point during the summer she happened to get into that stuff, and it looked good superficially, but she was looking for something in particular, dug into it, and soon realized a bunch of it was missing. She confronted Asshole who pulled his usual power play of threatening to never talk to her again, threatened they were “over” if she accused him of being a thief, he would never do anything like that, yada yada yada.
But of course Asshole could not tell her where the stuff was nor could he conjure it up, and she kept pushing, this stuff was important to her. Until she got to the bottom of some of it — you probably guessed already, Asshole had presumably been selling her stuff off and clumsily concealing it. Once she started looking in depth, it was obvious, a bunch of it was gone, I guess that finally sent her over the top. Lady went to the police. At which point I infer she learned she was nowhere near his first and only victim.
Once the cops were involved, contact between the two of them was cut off — she no longer had a choice — and at first she was almost suicidally depressed. But over the next few weeks, free from his influence and excuses and power plays, Asshole’s various schemes and stories caved in on themselves. I can’t go into more detail other than to say it’s ugly, it sounds like he’s in real legal trouble, the kind he won’t be able to talk his way out of.
The more I think about it, the more this resembles a drug or gambling addiction. Just like that kind of dependence, even if serious psychological help had been available or sought, it might not have helped anymore than it does when its forced on an alcoholic who’s just pretending help is wanted to keep friends and family at bay and the liquor flowing. If she hadn’t gotten so temporarily pissed off that the cops were brought in she might still be completely under that spell to this day.