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Feel suicidal after leaving narcissist husband

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Survivingeachday Sat 22-Aug-20 23:42:03

I have left my narcissist husband after 15 years together and two children. It took me 10 years to get the courage to do this along with recent therapy. I felt awful living with him. But now I feel suicidal without him I’m struggling to get through each day. We are still in contact because of the kids and everything seems amicable. His mum said she knows he is desperate to come back home. I miss him so much. I’m starting to wonder if he was even that bad. And I just miss him and having another adult in the house. But he used to be so controlling over me, no empathy, everything about him, he had cheated before, gambled etc. But he also had good points like he could back me up with dc now they are not listening to me. I miss his hugs. I feel terrible, I had dreamt of this day of leaving and instead of feeling relief I feel suicidal and I’m four weeks out of the relationship . I’m not sure I’m strong enough to break the trauma bond. I messaged him tonight and said to come round for Sunday lunch tomorrow because it would be nice for the kids. I’m such an idiot

OP’s posts: |
LouiseTrees Sun 23-Aug-20 00:04:34

It’s possible to coparent and remain friends without rewarding his poor behaviour by maintaining a sexual/loving relationship. It’s okay for you to have him round for dinner but he doesn’t need to be brought back into the home. Remember the bad stuff. Also the kids are acting up right now but that will pass.

Brokensunrise Sun 23-Aug-20 00:06:35

Have you looked into counselling/therapy?

Keep holding on - it was always going to be a difficult time straight afterwards, it’s never plain sailing. Do you have good friends you can talk to?

Antibles Sun 23-Aug-20 02:53:53

You've had a huge life upheaval. It's completely natural to feel all sorts of terrifying and negative emotions. You've done amazingly though. I sometimes used to get an awful feeling that I'd blown things out of proportion and had upended things over nothing really, even though I also knew this wasn't true. That's the trouble with emotional abuse, you're left second guessing yourself, with the other person telling you you're wrong which is why it takes so long to leave. Would it help to write down specific things that angered and upset you so you can remind yourself of why you made the choice you did? It's early days. Hang in there. Take a day at a time.

Anordinarymum Sun 23-Aug-20 03:11:22

OP people who emotionally abuse you over time create a dependancy which works both ways, they make you feel worthless without them -even though they are being abusive there is a sort of comfort knowing they are there, and in turn they need you so they can control you.
It will not change if you take him back.

Like the other ladies say, let him be included in the children's lives but not in yours. I think you will be doing him a favour too as he is clearly not a happy man

130mummy2 Sun 23-Aug-20 03:35:11

You are just being human with these feelings.
You made the biggest, best and bravest step in leaving but I'm sorry noone ever told you it was the first on a long walk.
You obviously knew it was best to make the choice to move on just try to tell yourself that when it gets hard.
Kids may struggle due to the change but I'm sure in your heart you know its better this way.
You are not an idiot or weak for not knowing how to break a cycle and move on, neither should anyone question you if you can't. Just try to keep making tge best decisions for you.
Seeing him and kind to him does not mean you accept what he did or are linked to him due to anything other then being parents. You may find seeing him and still choosing to move on empowers you as it should as you have left the control do now you make the choices for your life, he can now choose to accept that or you can tell him to leave.
You made the biggest step its now on your terms.

Sssloou Sun 23-Aug-20 08:28:26

How are you doing this morning Survivingeachday?

You can text/email/call the Samaritans at anytime.

If you have done your research on narcissism you will be aware that him being “amicable” since the split and your MIL telling you he is desperate to come home are both classic abusive and exploitative narc strategies - “hoovering” and “flying monkey” - for him to get back in your head back to control your life.

He has manipulated to achieve this invite.

This could well be the slippery slope. It’s v unusual that a couple separated due to abuse would be sitting down back in the family home for Sunday lunch - ever - never mind within 4 weeks.

You can call this off.

Have a headache, backache, need to go see a poorly friend/relative at short notice.

Do you have anyone in RL who can help you today? Can you arrange for someone to “drop by” or call you an hour after you have eaten for instance? Do you have a plan to end the meeting at a specific time - or a contingency to end it early if it doesn’t go well?

It sounds v overwhelming.

What are you worried about today?

That you will emotionally breakdown?

- sobbing and pleading for him to come back?

- swoon and end up in bed with him and him living back home?

- the DCs not wanting him to leave?

- him pulling some emotional stunt on you?
you flipping out in anger at him?

Are you able to keep the poker face? Sounds like this is an intolerable situation for you right now.

You know about trauma bonds - get on YouTube for a refresh. This is v hard and you have made spectacular progress to date.

You know it is not possible to have anytime more that total emotional detachment and grey rock communication with a narc - because every nugget of info, every micro expression that they see in you in fuel, “an in” to exploit and subjugate you.

I would imagine today will be about all grand gestures to gain the DCs sympathy and destabilise you to make you feel guilty.

Survivingeachday Sun 23-Aug-20 08:37:46

I’ve been awake since 4am after having a panic attack. I think I wasn’t prepared for feeling like this, my therapist said I would feel relief. I don’t I feel awful and hate my life even more now. But at the same time I know I don’t love him in a romantic way so it’s not going to work having him back. I have a rubbish support system so I feel he is all I have

OP’s posts: |
Survivingeachday Sun 23-Aug-20 08:39:33

I just feel in a constant state of fear and panic and keep being sick. I want him back to end this feeling but at the same time I know the relationship is toxic

OP’s posts: |
Sssloou Sun 23-Aug-20 08:54:08

I am so sorry that you are in such a state of deep distress right now.

It sounds like your body is physically reacting to PTSD - your alarm is screaming fear and panic because that’s real - you are in emotional danger - your head however is confused because he has gaslit your thoughts over time. These are not real right now. Listen to your body.

You don’t sound anywhere near well enough to do this today. Your DCs should not see you like this and it would be a gift to him for you to be in such a vulnerable physical and emotional state. You are not ready for this today.

Can you text and call it off right now?

Sssloou Sun 23-Aug-20 09:00:27

He will not take away this dreadful panic feeling. That is just a dangerous fantasy.

What can you do to take care of yourself so that you get some relief to get the panic attack to subside?

Can you do some deep breathing, go for a walk, play music, have a bath, meditate? You need a grounding exercise / experience to take you down from the emotional flooding.

Survivingeachday Sun 23-Aug-20 09:05:01

I’m going to ask him to take the kids out for the day, I’m going to say I’m not feeling well and not up to cooking. Which is true

OP’s posts: |
Survivingeachday Sun 23-Aug-20 09:06:51

I feel like the trauma bond is so deep that it’s impossible to break. I’ve been doing lots of reading up on trauma bonds and feel this is worse as I can’t even face going low contact. I feel there is no way out of this bond sad

OP’s posts: |
Rhubardandcustard Sun 23-Aug-20 09:14:33

Op the thing about living with a narcissist (been there too) is they make you feel completely worthless everything your fault and that you are nothing without them.

It’s early days for you- you will find your strength again just need to give it time and don’t give in.

Windmillwhirl Sun 23-Aug-20 09:18:57

You are doubting yourself because your life is changing and for many people that brings fear.

You wanted to leave for done time. You need to focus on those reasons. He wint change but you will get stronger and your fear of change will lessen. Dont rush back to him be ause you feel vulnerable in the immediate aftermath.

I also suggest counselling to talk openly about why you left.

Sssloou Sun 23-Aug-20 09:43:03

I’m going to ask him to take the kids out for the day, I’m going to say I’m not feeling well and not up to cooking. Which is true

Wow - that’s a strong and focused solution for today. That took some strength. You are stronger that you know. That bond is not as entrenched as you think. It is v painful to extricate yourself from such deeply toxic RS. I see it as almost being physically merged with them and pulling away rips our flesh and that involves a lot of pain, time, tenderness, attention and self care to heal over those open wounds. That’s a profound step you have taken today. Even though right now you will feel sick and distraught - in the weeks to come you will look at it as a cross roads / decision point and know that you took the right path. You must be exhausted - maybe focus on mental rest and gentle physically restorative activities for the next week. Your pride and confidence will slowly seep back with each boundary you put in and each proactive act of self compassion and self care that you give yourself. You are effectively rebuilding yourself. Take it slow - it’s a precious project.

Survivingeachday Sun 23-Aug-20 09:59:24

Thank you. That is so true I actually feel like I’m ripping my right arm off by leaving him. I wasn’t expecting to feel like this at all I just felt like I would feel freedom

OP’s posts: |
LouMumsnet (MNHQ) Sun 23-Aug-20 10:04:59

Hello OP, we are really sorry to hear you are feeling this way - it sounds like you've been incredibly strong and brave so far.

We hope you don't mind, but when these threads are flagged up to us we usually add a link to our Mental Health resources.

You can also go to the Samaritans website, or email them on Support from other Mumsnetters is great and we really hope you will be able to take some comfort from your fellow posters, but as other MNers will tell you, it's really a good idea to seek RL help and support as well.

We're going to move this thread over to our Mental Health topic now, as we always do with threads like this - we hope that helps but get in touch with us directly on if we can help further.

Best of luck. flowers

Sssloou Sun 23-Aug-20 10:10:09

You will in time. Your user name says it all. You are just surviving each day right now - in time you will be living each day. You are still only days and weeks into something v v profound. You are not even at the first month.

See every interaction you have with him as putting your hand back in the will open those wounds again.

Do you have a v high boundaried system to communicate with him? Will he come into the house to collect the DCs today? Can you minimise contact? If so he likely to take advantage of that?

And are you able to keep the MIL at arms length?

Survivingeachday Sun 23-Aug-20 10:22:31

He still comes in to visit dc as he doesn’t have any where suitable for them to stay. The problem is I can’t seem to just cut myself off from him it’s too painful

OP’s posts: |
Sssloou Sun 23-Aug-20 10:51:51

That’s why it’s so painful because you haven’t cut yourself off. He is in there every day holding a blow torch to your wounds.

It’s not appropriate or sustainable to have this arrangement. It’s not healthy for the DC and it is not healing for you. It suits him v well though.

It is his problem and responsibility to find suitable accommodation for the DCs to play. It’s the summer - they can go to a park for the next few months whilst he sorts himself out.

Start changing those arrangements otherwise you will be right back where yo were before you know it - more deeply wounded than you were.

Are you able to access any further professional support in RL? Women’s Aid? Freedom programme?

RandomMess Sun 23-Aug-20 10:55:52

You need him to take them out rather than coming into the home. He has his parents, he can go there with them?

He is going to be very nice and amenable as he's trying to work his way back in.

You are having an awful lot of contact with him so I'm not surprised you are feeling awful. Hang on in there it will get better.

Survivingeachday Sun 23-Aug-20 11:02:20

He comes over to see them three time’s a week for the afternoon, two out of those three I head out but the third we do something together as a family. I know this is what’s hurting me but I can’t seem to let go

OP’s posts: |
RandomMess Sun 23-Aug-20 11:08:33

No more family stuff. Could you join a gym?

He needs to be taking them out of the house, he is using it to keep his territory marked and he will be checking up on you. He could even have put cameras in the house etc.

He is dangerous.

Sssloou Sun 23-Aug-20 11:12:24

It’s really good that you have the insight that this is hurting you. You have done brilliantly to extricate him physically from your life 24/7 down to 3 afternoons. That’s step one. Next is dropping the shared afternoon and the next is it not being in your home.

You need oxygen, time, space and distance to feel better. Every contact you have with him rips off the scab.

He is weeding his way back in - that’s why your body is so ill and you are distressed.

Your DCs need you focused and emotionally healthy - his presence is stopping that.

It’s also important to fill your time with comforting and fulfilling activities and radiant people to help you heal and grow back to who you are when he is not there. Are you able to find a little way to do this? Little by little?

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