I miss my emotionally abusive (ex-)boyfriend.

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This topic contains 37 replies, has 14 voices, and was last updated by  Eliana 3 months, 3 weeks ago.

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    Hello, I’m hoping I can talk to some people to get some insights. I’m so sorry for this really long post. I guess I also need to get things off my chest.

    I just left my emotionally abusive boyfriend. This is perhaps the twentieth time I have left him. Each time he has always come back to me either really upset and then I feel sorry for him or sometimes he just keeps contacting me as if everything was fine and I had never left him. And each time I let him back, the abuse continues, despite him saying he’ll change. I regret it every time and feel disappointed with myself for being so weak.

    However, this time I think I have finally got what I wanted. He has not come back to me. I should be happy and relieved but instead I feel anger at him for everything he has put me through, anger at me for allowing myself to be treated this way, but on the other hand, I also miss the other side of him. When he is calm, he can be very nice, despite his outbursts being so scary and so unpredictable.

    But at the moment, I really miss his nice side. I am so tempted to contact him but I know I shouldn’t. If I go back to him, I will be putting myself in the same misery again.

    Below is some information about our relationship.

    My boyfriend, Kevin, is 36 and he’s French, and I’m 27 and I’m English… we met in Belgium in February 2015 as we were both working there.

    We have been having a lot of problems. The biggest problems having occurred over the last six months.

    Kevin has been having a lot of financial issues over the last year due to high tax rates in Belgium plus his own financial responsibilities (as well as his own lack of financial management) so in October 2015 he decided to find another job and got an offer in Spain. He asked the job in Spain if they had anything to offer me so that I could move to Spain with him and they said yes but only part-time. I wasn’t keen on moving, especially for a part-time contract so we eventually declined the offer. As time went by, I could see how miserable he was becoming so in November I said, ‘ok, let’s go to Spain’. We called the director to ask if there were still positions available and he said a part-time position was available for me for January and a full-time position was available for Kevin in March. We accepted. However, my gut instincts were telling me that I shouldn’t move and that it was a bad idea. In December, I said I was not keen on going to Spain and he yelled at me saying that I was being selfish, so eventually I accepted.

    My gut instincts were right. My employer in Spain was a cheat (but that is a whole different story). Basically, there was never a position for him in March, which was not the agreement (albeit verbal). They said that they would find enough hours for him for a part-time but full-time was out of the question. On the other hand, the school we were working at in Belgium offered him a proper contract (as opposed to being a freelance and having to pay high taxes). So in the end, Kevin didn’t come. I understand why he couldn’t come due to his finances. But what I don’t understand is that when I didn’t want to move, he yelled at me and called me selfish; yet when he didn’t want to move, he called it being pragmatic. He did not even consider that I had spent so much on moving for him and that I was in Spain on my own. He did not consider my finances: that I had to pay rent and bills all on my own. In Belgium we never had to consider rent and bills as accommodation and food was provided. What bothered me the most was that he just did not care about my side of things, considering I did it for him. He only cared solely about his own situation and his own finances. I feel cheated by not only my employer from Spain, but by him as well.

    I had completely financed this move to Spain (rent, bond, bills, travel, sending boxes, household appliances, etc) even though it was his idea to find a new job in the first place. I have spent more than €4000. He seemed to think that I could just move here and there as if it didn’t cost anything. He never even asked me how much everything had costed – he kept completely silent about the financial aspect of the situation, which to me shows two issues: dishonesty and that he just did not care about my side of things. I really feel he was taking me and my money for granted. I feel he was the one being selfish by showing no regard to my hard-earned money. Just because he couldn’t manage his own money doesn’t mean my money is at his disposal.

    Furthermore, he already owes me €2000 from before all of this. I gave him €500 voluntarily as a short-term solution to a sudden financial hole he fell into. That I accept was a gift. But had I known that that was not the solution and that he was going to keep falling into the same situation, I would not have given him that money. Although he has financial responsibilities, he also does not manage his time and money well. For example, he buys things he doesn’t need and he pays his bills late which he then blames others because he incurs fines. As soon as he is above zero, he begins spending without watching until his bank blocks his card which is a regular occurrence and he never keeps track of how much he has. He only finds out when his card is blocked. And the overdraw limit is €150 before his card becomes blocked. A little bit below zero is one thing, but €150 below zero without knowing it is by far irresponsible. After initially helping him with his finances, he then asked me for more money to pay for a new computer and then to pay off other debts because he did not watch his spending.

    What upsets me the most is that after all this, he regularly loses his temper with me (probably because he’s stressed). He’s always so negative. When I talk to him about this situation, he starts yelling at me and makes it sound like he’s done nothing wrong – like his debts give him an excuse to be entitled. I was also hoping the move to Spain would improve his mood. I feel so taken for granted. I feel like I should’ve left this relationship before making such a big move.

    He complains about everything and is always so negative. I feel like I have become him. I came to Belgium to start fresh, completely carefree and happy. The first moment I realised he was making me unhappy was one month into our relationship when we went to the post office because he had to do something but he was in such a bad mood and constantly complaining. I was thinking to myself: My god he is constantly complaining and he doesn’t stop. That night was the first time he yelled at me because he told me to come down stairs to his room. I knocked on his door (he was having what sounded like an argument with someone on the phone). He opened the door and said he was on the phone and closed the door in my face so I sat on the steps of the stairs waiting. As soon as he finished, he came out and saw me sitting on the stairs and yelled at me for sitting on the stairs. I personally did not see anything wrong with sitting on the stairs. I was so shocked. This was the first time a boyfriend had ever yelled at me – and for sitting on stairs. I was crying so much in my room. A while later he came up to comfort me but when I said I was only sitting on stairs, he started shouting at me again saying it was my fault for sitting on the stairs. And to this day, it is still my fault for sitting on the stairs. I really wanted to leave him then and there but the truth is I was worried because we were living and working together.

    Another time he yelled at me which really shocked me was when he came back from France after a week and I wasn’t at the door to meet him because I was finishing work. He completely blew up at me, accusing me of not wanting to see him. I was really looking forward to seeing him that night only to be confronted by a man that was losing his temper.

    Kevin controlled my social life. Before I met him, I used to go to the pub and I had fun. I could enjoy my life and interact with whoever I wanted to. When I met him, my social life disappeared. I became trapped. He didn’t like me drinking (I don’t drink that much – only social drinking). I couldn’t talk to the gardener. He was telling me who I could and couldn’t talk to. I talked to the gardener twice. It was his first day at work and the first time we talked. We were just having a basic conversation introducing ourselves saying where we came from, what we do, etc. Kevin called that flirting and got angry with me. Later that day, the gardener came to speak to me again. (This time it may have been a little bit flirty from his side because he was asking me if I had a boyfriend.) Afterwards, Kevin yelled at me saying he had already told me once. But firstly, I did not think the first encounter was flirting. Secondly, it was his first day and he was a colleague. I did not want to be rude to him. I cannot just ignore him and get up and walk away when he was only being nice. And thirdly, Kevin got angry at me because he said he had told me once yet I have had to tell him hundreds of times about his bad manners on Skype but he continues with his bad manners anyway. In fact, at that moment, talking to the gardener was like a breath of fresh air away from Kevin.

    On another occasion, Kevin completely blew up at me for accepting a Facebook friend request of a man. Kevin and I used to play in Mölkky tournaments (a game from Finland). This man was no stranger; only a fellow competitor from the game. Kevin blew up at me saying profanities along the lines that I would sleep with him.

    In July 2015, I went on holiday with a male friend that I had known from university. Before going on holiday, Kevin made a lot of speculations about this man and even suggested I would sleep with him. Then when I said that next year I plan to go on holiday with another male friend, his immediate reaction was, ‘are you going to f*ck him?’. I feel completely trapped and controlled with Kevin. I have never felt like this with another man before.

    Even when it came to achieving my personal goals, he was controlling. When I said I wanted to go back to university to do a Master’s degree, he said I was being selfish and not thinking about us as a couple. Everything I plan in my life, I always take my relationship into consideration. My plan was to postpone university from last year to this year so that I could save up some more money for financial security. However, ever since he got angry at me for allegedly not considering him, I never mentioned my personal goals because I was afraid. This year I am becoming broke because of all the moving I did for him and because of him I cannot go to university. Instead I’m starting a job in Singapore in September. I feel like he has really screwed me over in my life and he couldn’t care less.

    He has never defended me. When the gardener was ‘flirting’ with me, I was the one yelled at. When other men ‘harassed’ other women, he was immediately at the defence of the women. When the gardener was talking to another woman (in which she herself was happily chatting back to him), Kevin was watching from the window the entire time.

    There was an incident with a drunk colleague shouting profanities at other colleagues of ours (he only lasted a week). This incident happened whilst I was in Spain so Kevin explained to me what happened over the phone. With Kevin, I have learned to stay neutral as he often can put the blame on people who don’t deserve the blame. So when Kevin explained to me the situation, he basically said that this colleague was drunk and shouting sexually explicit language at women. Kevin then said that this colleague was running a lesbian chat room online and that he wanted to show everyone this chat room and so everyone followed him to his room to see this chat room. While I disapprove of this colleague’s behaviour, I wanted to keep it neutral so I said that if this colleague wanted to run a lesbian chat room, it is really nobody else’s business and there was really no reason for everyone to follow him into his room to see this chatroom. Immediately, Kevin blew up at me again saying I was defending him and that I would love to be fisted by him and f*cked by him. He went on and on. I cried so much; I couldn’t believe Kevin would say something like that to someone he claims to love. I was not defending anyone. I was trying to keep my view neutral based on the information I was receiving.

    Further to his controlling behaviour, he would look at what I was doing on my phone (which I don’t have a problem with), yet when he was on his phone or computer, he always turned it away from me. I could only assume he was hiding something as his movements for turning his screen away from me were very strange and obvious. Yet when I confronted him about it, he says he was not hiding anything and that it was just a ‘natural reaction’.

    On other occasions, there were a couple of times when I had planned to dress a little revealingly in which he controlled me over that. Never have I had a boyfriend tell me what to wear. Rather, they always complimented me on the way I dressed, even if it was just something simple. I was always complimented on aspects of me, even if they were flawed. I was always complimented for being who I am. However, with Kevin, it has always been criticism after criticism after criticism. He has criticised my physical appearance and he has criticised who I am. That has brought my self-esteem down a lot and I have doubted a lot about myself both physically and emotionally.

    He often gets impatient and loses his temper with me. Sometimes with reason and others without. When he does get impatient and lose his temper with me for reason, it is often because I am fed up and have reached my limit with all this misery and negativity. Yet he says he loves me. I don’t understand how anyone can get impatient and lose their temper with someone they claim to love. Not only does he get impatient and lose his temper, he talks condescendingly to me in a very patronising tone. He has made me cry so much and he has never comforted me ever. Rather he blames me for everything. The state of him is my fault, the state of our relationship is my fault. All the problems are always my fault. Every time I tell him how I feel, he would raise his voice, twist things and make it about how he feels and that how I feel doesn’t matter.

    I was thinking, we all have our bad days but I cannot be with someone who constantly imposes his misery on someone who is happy. It should be the other way round. Happy people should be imposing their happiness onto miserable people. We should comfort each other on our bad days and enjoy our good days. I’ve tried comforting him on his bad days but I couldn’t because I end up paying the price when he blows up. And on my bad days, I have never experienced any comfort from him; just more yelling about how I am always in the wrong and how everything is my fault. As for good days, we hardly had any.

    I also risk being yelled at when we have a discussion and I have a different opinion to his. For example, he is against the use of ‘Ms.’ because he doesn’t believe it is ok for somebody to hide their marital status. My opinion was that people can choose what title they want to be referred to by. In fact, I myself prefer to be referred to as ‘Ms.’. As soon as I expressed my opinion, he got so angry at me. When we were talking about the refugee crisis, he was very anti-refugee because he wasn’t happy that governments were helping refugees first instead of their own people, and that most refugees were not really refugees, just thieves. While I can understand his view that governments are helping refugees before their own people, I had more sympathy as I was thinking that if I was in a war zone, scared for my life on a daily basis, I too would flee. But as soon as I defended the refugees, Kevin got really angry at me. I started to become afraid of having my own opinion. Every time we went out and we saw refugees around, he always had to say bad things about them like they are not really refugees and they are not really suffering. He makes these judgments without any information. During these times whenever we went out, I always felt forced to agree with what he said. I wish that if I could turn back time, I would have still stuck to my own opinion. I should not have allowed fear to force me to agree with an opinion of his that I do not share.

    I have the right to defend myself. I’m not the type of woman that will let people take advantage of me and treat me unfairly. Kevin is the first person I have come across who has told me to not defend myself saying that there’s no point as people don’t change and that nothing I do can make them change. I have been told all my life to stand up for myself otherwise people will take advantage of me. And often it takes me quite a lot of courage. Then I met Kevin who tells me to not stand up for myself, subsequently making me doubt myself. He told me this when I was being cheated by my employer in Spain. What sort of advice is that? If people don’t stand up for themselves, cheaters become an accepted part of society and they get away with everything. If nobody tells them, who will. He said if I want to change society, I should become a politician. So that implies, I’m a nobody. I have always been a nobody to him. Perhaps this is another one of Kevin’s manipulations so he can continue treating me this way without having to deal with me sticking up for myself. It is his dream for me to be submissive.

    I don’t think he realises that a relationship requires effort from both sides. The only times he really showed me affection were when we were in public in front of other people. Behind closed doors, he never showed much affection. Every time I tried to kiss him or hug him, it would go unreturned or it would feel like he was interested in doing something else, and usually that was going on his computer. In fact, we rarely spent evenings together as he was always teaching the same student on Skype every evening which was usually between 20.30 and 22.00. And on days his student couldn’t make it, instead of spending couple time together, he would rather spend it on his computer. I said to him that it was ok for him to teach this student, but also consider not doing it every evening as we also needed to spend quality couple time together. But as usual, he never takes what I say seriously and completely ignores what I have to say. To him, being there was enough. He would be physically next to me but always in a different world; either on the internet or on his phone. Always. At night, we never cuddled. He would be on his computer, have a bath, and then go to bed.

    On Skype with me, he would turn the camera on but then start messaging other people or surfing the internet. I have told him many times that it’s not ok and he has said that he would stop but he continues. He doesn’t even show that he is trying. We argue because I keep saying the same thing over and over again but I wouldn’t have to keep telling him again and again if he could at least take my thoughts in to considerations. It is basic manners. If you love someone, you would want to speak to them not turn on Skype and chat to someone else. And every time I repeat myself, I put myself in the position of getting yelled at. Before I left Belgium to Singapore, we made an agreement about quality Skype time. I should’ve known that it was nothing more than empty, meaningless words. I was a fool to again believe he would stick to his promises.

    I never chat to others or surf the internet when I’m on Skype with him and I expect the same from him. He even asked me to play my violin to him over Skype and whilst I did he was chatting to his friends. He texts others while he has lunch or dinner with me, yet he employs manners when he eats with other people and doesn’t use his phone with them. I didn’t realise that the person you love can be the person most disrespected.

    His words never reflect his actions. He is a constant let down and a constant disappointment every single time without fail. For example, from something as small as agreeing to skype at 6 o’clock then telling me he can’t last minute (often yelling), to something as big as moving to Spain and in the end deciding not to come or saying he will come to Spain to help me pack when in the end he didn’t. In the latter instance, he said he would come in my last week in Spain to help me pack and then we could rent a van and drive back to Belgium together, stopping in a town in France on the way. That then changed to he would come on my last day in Spain, then it changed to he would come the day I leave Spain, then it changed to he didn’t come at all. This costed me also because I then had to organise my boxes to be sent to Belgium last minute and I had to rush to find a plane ticket. Even though some of the things may be small, many small things become one big thing. He is so used to saying things without any intention of doing it that it has become the norm. He does not understand that it is a problem. He is a compulsive liar.

    I remember on his 35th birthday, his first birthday together and about a month into our relationship, I wrote him a birthday card. I wrote about how much I loved him and how much I wanted to be with him and I apologised for not getting him a gift but that I would. The reaction that came from him was unpleasant and took me by surprise. Instead of showing me any love, he came across as slightly angry as he didn’t believe anything that I had written. He didn’t believe I loved him. He didn’t believe I wanted to be with him. It showed me how insecure he was. That hurt me a lot. He also wasn’t happy about not receiving a gift which I didn’t know how to respond to. He rarely gives me anything and nor do I expect anything from him. I always thought to give love, care and time is so much better than to give material.

    Over time, I did learn to realise that Kevin is a very materialistic person. Every time I go somewhere, he always asks me what I got him. He is also an impulsive buyer, which is part of the reason why he finds himself in a never ending cycle of financial troubles.

    In May 2015, he had a wake up call. After a big argument between us, it seemed to have triggered something in him. He went away to Koblenz for the weekend to think and he seemed to have realised his actions. He saw so much he did not see before and saw how he was wrong to me and his exes in so many ways. He told me he blamed his childhood. He always wanted toys and if he didn’t get what he wanted, he would create havoc until he got it. I still see that in him now – both materialistically and emotionally. He said he lost-temper with all of his ex-girlfriends, scared them and that is why they all left him. He said this realisation was very difficult for him. Although he came to this realisation, it seemed to have lasted only a couple of weeks. He is now back to his old ways again. I feel like he has forgotten about Koblenz. He continues to yelled at me, patronise me, criticise me and control me.

    He is not proactive with his life. He cannot manage his time or his money and then blames others for it. For example, he never paid his insurance company on time and now they don’t want him yet he blames them. Or he always says he has no time to do anything and ends up doing it last minute or not at all when in fact he has a lot of time, he just puts things off. And that’s how problems occur. He is unreliable but does not take his share of responsibility.

    He keeps saying that I’m the one with the problem. That I need to seek help. That I have confidence issues. That I need to control my emotions. Yes, I have lost my confidence and yes, he has changed me. But these are all issues he has which he twists to make it seem like I am the problem. He shouts at me, patronises me, controls me and talks over me. And when I tell him not to talk to me like that, he says, ‘I will talk to you how I like’.

    It is so easy for him to tell me to forget the past. Being in a relationship like this for this long has left me damaged. The scars don’t just go away overnight, especially as I am still paying the price for it. I have had to do so much for him over the last six months and this has left financial and emotional consequences. He takes everything for granted. He does not care how others feel. All he cares about is himself and his reputation with others.

    Now that I am in Singapore, he wants to move here with me. I don’t want to continue a relationship like this anymore. But at the same time, there’s a part of me that’s saying, well maybe if he can get a good job here, things will change and he’ll become a different person. I feel like I have given him too many chances but at the same time, I’m too weak. I should know that I should not put up with someone like this. I have said it all my life! If Kevin moves to Singapore, it will be exactly like Spain. I will be the one expected to finance everything and pay everything up front that is meant to be for the two of us. He will continue to be my burden. He will continue to live off me for free. He will continue to not care about the effort I put in, shout at me, patronise me and believe that he is deserving of it.

    I used to be carefree. I used to spend a lot of time with my male friends and my partners in the past used to spend a lot of time with their female friends. There were no issues. We were open and honest to each other and we never controlled what each other did. Since being with Kevin, I have changed in the way that I now act exactly how he has acted with me. When he is with female friends, I have become somewhat controlling. Not because I am worried of what he might do. I trust him in that sense. But because he is controlling with me over who I interact with and I feel it is unjust and double standard if he thinks he can hang out with his female friends until late at night and not allow me to even have male friends of my own.

    I feel he has changed me so much. I am now behaving like him. I need to go back to who I really am. I am really worried that my next relationship will be affected by the way this relationship has affected me. It has been a scarring experience. I am completely traumatised.

    I am a strong woman; how could I have allowed someone to treat me like this and put up with it? I feel the only answer I can give was that I was living and working in the same place as him and I was afraid of him. But I should not have let that be a determining factor. In fact, I have left him so many times but he still keeps coming back to me. I’m so weak.

    Staying with him is just punishing myself. His behaviour is already a warning. Ignoring the warnings and staying with him would just be deserving of me.



    This is so long!! I am so sorry I only read through one part and skimmed the rest! In TB you’ll get the most responses if you keep things short and succinct because a lot of us don’t have tons of time, and this one deserves time to give proper feedback. That said, I’ll try to come back to this.

    It sounds like this guy is an irresponsible user. I only got through the part where you moved to Spain and I am seething with rage for you!!

    OMG, this guy will bleed you dry!! Change your number, block him from social media. Do NOT let him mooch off you. Now in Singapore?? Good grief!

    You actually haven’t known him for that long. Once he is out of your life for good, before you know it you will have been broken up with him longer than you had known him. Then you will see clearly!



    • This reply was modified 1 year, 2 months ago by  Inky.


    I’m so sorry it’s so long! I guess I also felt I had so much to get off my chest. The first part is just the problem I’m facing now. The rest is what I have been through in the relationship, and I don’t expect everyone to read through it all. But thank you for taking the time to reply, Inky 🙂

    You’re right I haven’t known him for that long. It felt like the whole relationship was moving so quickly. After two weeks, he questioned my love for him and got really upset (over nothing) – but for me, two weeks I’m still getting to know him. I didn’t see anything wrong with the relationship until that moment he was questioning my love for him for no reason.

    I didn’t want to move to Spain also because 1) it was like stepping on eggshells with him and 2) I had known him for less than a year! But anytime I mentioned it, he would get angry and accuse me of not committing to this relationship. I really wish I had stuck to my guts.



    Hi Again,

    This guy is desperate for money. So he will naturally gravitate towards and find the most likely girlfriend/victim. It’s survival. Also, it sounds like you are thoughtful and caring. He is high intensity. It is SO easy for us to get sucked into these personalities!!

    Is it possible for you to “ghost” him and go off the grid for a while?

    What will happen is he WILL move on to the next most likely supporter to leech off of. He has to. No worries there. Once you lose him he will be so long gone you can’t even find him again next year if you tried.




    Hi Inky,

    I have asked myself that question, whether he’s really only after money. It’s so hard to tell. Either I’m blind or he’s covering up very well. He keeps telling me how much he loves me, but how can someone who claims to love me shout at me and patronise me whenever he feels like.

    There have been many times when he went shopping and his card was blocked and I had to pay for him. Not once has he ever offered to pay me back.

    I don’t mind helping a loved one out with money, but if in return all I get is disrespect and no appreciation, it’s not something I can understand.

    I can ‘ghost’ him – I now live on the other side of the world and I’ve blocked him on all possible forms of communication. His only way is through email which he has used to try to get back with me. However, this time he hasn’t tried to get back with me.

    I’m just heartbroken. It’s like he was two completely different people when he was calm and when he lost his temper.



    Hi Aballa,

    I read through all, whatever you have written and shared and I have few suggestions for you, which you may want to try:

    1. If he contacts you again in any means or form, Tell him or respond to him upfront with a chit – A chit with big numbers on it – whatever you have spent for him so far….and tell him, He needs to pay it back first, only then you can initiate atleast a formal conversation with him.

    There are 2 benefits here: If he agrees and pays, it will take time for him to payback, which gives the much needed break time for both of you, and you get your money back atleast.

    2nd, If he is not paying you back, you atleast know, what he is after…since there is no price tag for love.. You did everything for him out of love and he took it for granted…So, you need to be upfront and strong atleast on the financial part, considering all the financial loses you have incurred with this relationship…

    2. After reading everything, I personally feel, you are the one allowed kevin to treat you like this, it may be due to love, fear, insecurity or just pity for the one you love.. it happens.. but, YOU DON’T DESERVE TO BE TREATED THIS WAY, WHATSOEVER…PERIOD. Be bold, strong and hard enough, put your foot down and TELL him, that you need to be treated with respect in all ways, as he expects you to treat him, which you have already done almost every time…

    3. After reading everything, I personally feel, everything you wrote was about how he behaved and treated you in certain situations, but, it doesn’t say anything on how you behaved in any given situation, how you responded, not reacted to him, how you communicated your love, hate or anger towards him… sometimes, we need to respond and sometimes we need to react, when we feel, we are being pulled down and not treated with respect, which we all deserve, even kevin is not an exception for this.

    4. I think, he was trying to pass on his irritation, anger and helplessness to support and gather himself, on to you and you were accepting it as part of this relationship and most of the time it was out of pity and love..mixed emotions…

    Be strong!! Be Brave!!! All it takes is a little bit practice and determination to be who we actually are and who we actually want to that you are in singapore, he cant do anything to you even emotionally, until you allow him to do so.. cut the negative part on this behavior and focus on the positive part and make him understand the same.. sometime, you have to TELL.. sometime you have to make him FEEL.. That’s how this goes as far as I know..

    Please pardon me if I’m wrong.. I wish you all success, happiness, love..and the strength to endure and be a WINNER…




    Dear, please go with your gut on this one. I was in the same situation as you, I went head-first into a controlling, emotionally abusive relationship without realizing it. Five years later, I found myself moved out of state. Cut off from friends, family, and my bank account bled dry.

    Men like this more than likely do not change, no matter how many times they say they will. No matter how good the good times are with them, if you feel like you are walking on eggshells just to keep things complacent or to avoid an emotional outburst, then that is your number one red flag that you should not be anywhere near this person!

    For your own safety, please reign in those feelings of missing him. Because I know you know that the next step from emotional abuse is physical abuse. It is not a fun ordeal. If you need to get anything back from him, do so as swiftly as possible. Personally, I found it best to cut my losses and find any way I could out.
    It’s been a year and a half since I left, and I am only just now beginning to regain my sense of peace.

    I do hope that you find yours and that you are able to leave the abuse behind.

    Best wishes,



    Hi LiquidSnake,

    Thank you so much for taking the time to read everything and responding. I really appreciate it 🙂

    I will definitely take your advice for point one if he contacts me again. Like you said, there are two benefits.

    As for point two, I also agree with you. I’ve put my foot down so many times yet so many times I have been so weak and let him talk me out of it. I allowed him to treat me like this and that is why I’m also so mad at myself. I’ve always told myself from a young age that I am a strong woman and that I will never tolerate anything like this. I wanted to leave him after the first month but because we were living and working in the same place, I was afraid of the consequences. Every time I have told him to not talk to me in a certain way or to calm down, he turns it around and puts it all on me.

    Which leads me onto the third point. Up until the last four or five months, I have managed (or at least tried) to be firm with him by not losing myself and staying calm. From about four or five months ago, I don’t think my response has been the best. Each time he blew up at me, I would raise my voice back at him. I was reaching my limit. It wasn’t a good response because he always used it against me. In hindsight, I should’ve just walked away. To be honest, I feel like I was becoming him. I felt like I wanted him to understand how he was treating me. For example, he did not like me talking to other men or my male friends. He has two females friends which he often goes to their place until late at night to drink and chit chat. I know they are just friends and I have nothing to be worried about. However, because he was always suspicious about men I came into contact with, I decided to do the same with him. It didn’t work. Instead he just used it against me.

    As for showing him love, I was always the one initiating kissing and cuddles (and even sex). Often I would kiss him or cuddle him and it would go unreturned. He said it was because he couldn’t kiss or cuddle someone he argued with. But I thought I was at least trying to make things better. To be honest, I got the impression that he was just more interested in being on his computer. I also got the impression early on in the relationship that he just wanted a relationship asap without having to work for it. Once he got me that was it. He told me once that he ex-girlfriends (who all left him) complained he was ‘absent’ from the relationship.

    Thank you very much for your supportive insight, LiquidSnake!! I’m already feeling better from posting on here. I just have to stay strong. I only just discovered this website and I think it’s great that people can post on here and help each other.



    Dear aballa:

    You wrote: “It’s like he was two completely different people when he was calm and when he lost his temper.”

    Yes, if only he would always be calm, then all would be wonderful. If people would always be calm, there would be no abuse, no violence, no mismanagement, no dysfunction, no waste. If only.

    If you were calm, you wouldn’t consider contacting him and having him live with you in Singapore. If you were calm, your thinking would be saner- you wouldn’t need to convince yourself of others that indeed, this relationship is not for your best interest and you should not re-ignite it.

    It is when we are not calm that we need to be careful about our choices, about how we treat ourselves and others.

    Kevin, this 36 year old man, sounds very much like a boy, as if he is still living his childhood when he was unloved. He threw temper tantrums then when he wanted a toy because when his parent bought him a toy- that was probably the closest he got to feeling loved. And so, he keeps buying himself things and having you buy him things so to feel love. Only it is a poor substitution.

    When he talks to you about you needing to control your emotions, he is talking to himself. He often talks to himself ( to the image of his parent/s in his head) when he is talking to you. When he calls you selfish, he is calling his mother or father selfish. When he yells at you, he is expressing his anger at one or both of his parents. So there is little in his going-ons with you that is about you.

    You wrote that you were all fine and dandy before you met him, but I wonder if this is so. In some ways, maybe. But how can you tolerate this behavior, sitting on the stairs waiting for him to finish his call and then being yelled at for sitting on the stairs. How do you tolerate this if you knew way better treatment before?




    Hi Manda,

    I’m so sorry to hear of your ordeal. Five years is such a long time to go through. I’m truly happy that you are finally out of this ordeal and beginning to find peace.

    Everything you say is so true. It’s the getting over the emotions that’s difficult.

    Was it easy to leave him?

    I wish you peace and happiness, Mandelion 🙂 And don’t let things get you down. I use to be that type of person who could just let things go. Now I feel I have to learn all over again.

    Aballa xx



    Hi Anita,

    Thank you so much for reading and responding.

    You’re right, I need to find the peace in me.

    To answer you question, I believe I tolerated him because:

    1) I still had hope. I thought that maybe moving to Spain would eradicate his problems and he would be a better person.

    2) We were living and working at the same place. The company I worked for put us up in accommodation and we happened to be put in the same house. And this house was right next to our work place. I was afraid of the consequences.

    3) I also had feelings for him.

    You are spot on about his troubled childhood and he often refers back to his childhood using it as an excuse for the way he is. Sometimes it feels like he’s feeling sorry for himself.




    It is alright, what I went through has taught me lessons that I wouldn’t have learned otherwise. As I’m sure you have as well.

    It was difficult to leave. All of that time I had built an emotional investment, it could be called a dependency even, that had me feeling much the same way- knowing that the relationship was toxic but not wanting to give up the familiarity. Even reasoning couldn’t get through for the longest time. But eventually it’s just deciding what is best for you and what is needed for you to grow.
    So I would say, sit with your feelings of missing him. Experience them, but don’t act on them. It’s a process, but you’re already away from him, and that’s the largest part of the battle.

    You’ve got this!



    Dear aballa:

    You are welcome.

    As to reason #1: ” I still had hope. I thought that maybe moving to Spain would eradicate his problems and he would be a better person.” Unfortunately it doesn’t matter where he moves physically- a new location, new life circumstances by themselves will not eradicate his problems, not even close. Only therapy would, that is only if he travels into his mind and past…

    Reason #2 no longer applies. Reason #3- you having feelings for him, an attachment, a desire to help him, to see more and more of his calm side, more of the loving and lovable child that he was (still shows at times, doesn’t it?)- if you return to a relationship with him, you will again see him calm and you will again see the boyish glitter in his eye, the desire to love, the desire to live a better life. You will see those things because you already did, but you will see his abusive self in between those good sights. And it will cost you more money. Those good sights will indeed continue to be very expensive for you, in currency and in emotion.

    About him using his childhood as an excuse- if he is using it as an excuse for his abusive behavior then sure, he needs to stop his abuse no matter what his childhood was like. If he uses his childhood as an excuse to him living his life so far in self defeating ways, then he is right. He was set up as we all do. And he needs to take on healing himself, do all the work even though he was set up to having the problems that plague him.

    You can’t heal him- you are not a therapist AND if you were, you couldn’t ethically therapeut your own boyfriend (the objectivity required could not be there for you).

    Whatever is drawing you to contact him for more of the same- that is … for you to heal in yourself.

    Post again, anytime.





    Sorry to hear about your struggle. I’ve experienced a very similar relationship. You MUST research Narcissist Personally Disorder. You are about to find out that you are FAR FROM ALONE WITH WHAT YOU ARE GOING THROUGH. Trust me on this, do your research then do what ever you have to do to stay away from this man. Go absolutely NO CONTACT! It’s the only way to save your own self respect and sanity. I promise, by the time he is done with you…You will be no more than a shell of the person you once were. Please keep telling yourself you love yourself enough to let go.




    HI Aballa

    Your story is full of pain and of lessons that you can learn from in the right setting. I echo those above who say you are not alone. Alcoholics for example can be abusive and controlling in their relationships, causing their partner to presume all the problems are them to solve, when in fact it is manufactured by the Alcoholic. The Suggestion that your ex-boyfriend has Nassissistic Personality Disorder may be another place to explore. But these things are suggestions for you and you need to choose your path out of this.

    Posting your disappointment and pain like this is something you should consider taking to a self help group. There are many. I have ongoing issues that I take to a 12 step group such as Al-Anon – while I do not have alcoholics in my life, I am still impacted by them.

    I go so I can remember I am not alone, I am not the only one feeling these problems, and I am not the problem, it is the other.

    The mind may have it’s logic, but the Heart has it’s way also – missing your abusive ex is work you need to do emotionally, and that is best done in safe places like this place.

    I still recommend finding a place to talk where you are face to face with people, and you can laugh, cry and sigh safe to do so. An anonymous fellowship worked for me. A Pscycologist worked for me. A family member on the phone worked for me. A doctor did not work for me. A diary did not work for me. A stranger in the street did not work for me.

    Find what works for you.


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