Your ex sounds like a narcissist too, whether covert or overt.

I have a similar ex…hell bent on convincing the world what a “good/nice guy” he was on the outside, but emotionally abusive behind closed doors.

Virtue signaling was, and still is, his M.O.

• He’d post all over social media supporting #metoo (while failing to mention the times he sexually assaulted his wife.)

• He’d buy everyone’s the drinks (with the money he took from petty cash)

• He’d volunteer at soup kitchens and building women’s shelters in Mexico (as long as he could post it on FB and get social credit for it.)

• He’d jump at the chance to give random women in his “Divorce Support Group” mid-workday rides when their cars wouldn’t start (but couldn’t take time off work to show up for his kids’ school functions or to take them to therapy.)

It was one of his gaslighting techniques. “Everyone knows what I nice guy I am. You’re the crazy one.”

To this day, in his accusatory, blame-shifting e-mails (because I blocked him on my phone), he regularly talks about how “everyone” is on his side and “everyone” thinks I’m a bad mom, and “everyone” is disappointed in me. There is zero information content in his communications…just pathology.

I’m only 18 months out, but infinitely happier.

I actually do take responsibility for his infidelity with Craigslist hookers, but only in the sense that I enabled him for so long and should’ve left him well before that happened. I taught him over 16 progressively downhill years that I would tolerate his lies, secrets, emotional neglect, social isolation, missing money, gaslighting, and even make excuses for him when people questioned his behavior…He thought that he could do whatever he wanted and that I would never leave. Why not fuck prostitutes? He was so confused when I had had enough and when I told him to get out…and meant it. He said I was cruel for not giving him a “second chance”, not realizing that he had had 14,000 chances. I was done at 14,001.

I had three more kids with a man who was uninvolved with the first, and that’s why I held on. That was my bad. I should’ve packed my first baby and left.

Kicking him out the best thing I ever did. I have never been happier, more confident, more clear-headed, and I am truly thriving without that monkey on my back. I’m glad to hear that you are recovering, too. Gaslighting is a real thing. It’s insidious and destructive. Glad you’re bringing awareness.

Mama, writer, lover, fighter — I wear my heart on my sleeve because my pants pockets are too small.

Mama, writer, lover, fighter — I wear my heart on my sleeve because my pants pockets are too small.