Here's my story:
Met my husband when I was going through a divorce with an alcoholic husband who had cheated on me. He made me feel like I was a queen. He said all the right things to me and made me feel soooo special. I felt like I had found the love of my life. I made a list of all the good qualities I saw in him, and it was very long. Today I keep crossing them out as they no longer are true. The list just keeps getting shorter and shorter. I was very vulnerable when I met him. My self esteem was very low at the time. He was so affectionate then. I couldn't get enough of him. When I moved in with him, I was very happy. Happier that I'd been in a very long time. About 2 weeks after this, a red flag arose that I ignored. He became very quiet and disconnected from me. Here I was in a new place away from my family and friends and I couldn't understand how he could be so cold to me. Well all of a sudden after a couple of weeks, he came around and life was blissful again. We talked of getting married, and of course I said yes, but it was not him who pushed this. This was his third marriage. I was the one that got him to finally call the preacher to marry us. We worked on a cattle ranch on 60 thousand acres. Our duties involved a lot of riding to check the livestock, repair fences, etc. I had not a lot of experience riding horses when we got married, but he taught me well, and am very grateful to him for this as I have a great love for horses and riding now. I am by profession a registered nurse. We lived 75 miles from any health care facility, so I chose not to work as a nurse at this time in my life.
My husband has 2 grown boys and I have 2 grown girls.
Over the next 10 years, I learned that no matter what I did, it was not good enough. He didn't have to tell me anything when something I did was wrong, I just got "the look" (which my grandkids say is the evil look), and the silent treatment for anywhere from a few days to 2 to 3 weeks. Frequently he would blast me with degrading remarks, and I have no idea why!?!?! He would make over other women and make them feel special when they were around and then give me the silent treatment when they left. Do you think he was comparing them to me? Of course he was! He'd call them "beautiful" or "the good looking one", or just compliment on them to me when they were gone. Say THEY do this or that...usually something that I don't do. Nothing was ever right or good enough. When we would go somewhere he would totally disregarded me and would act as if I wasn't there. If I'd get near him he'd blow me off, turn his back to me, or just walk the other direction. Travel with this man is unbearable. I get the silent treatment the whole way. We often have to travel 200-400 miles for business and the only time he talks is when I ask him something, otherwise he's in his own little world. Makes me feel as if I don't ever exist!!
I have 2 grown daughters. Both married now. When the youngest got married, I was so thrilled for her. I went down several days before the wedding, to help with the preparations. My husband came down the night of the reception. He was in a mood. In the motel room, he never said one word to me. If we talked, it was I who initiated the conversation. He went about the travel to the reception and the wedding alone. Left the reception way before me. Of course he did put his arm around me at the wedding and put on an act as though he really did care for me. He went home the next day, and I followed several hours later, as I stayed to help clean up. Several days later I got a call from my other daughter, saying the morning of the wedding he'd came to her motel room and told her that he really liked her body. I was devastated. WHAT!!!!! I know he left me in our room to go get coffee, which seemed to take a long time. When he came back, he was very quiet and sat on the bed and never said a word! Not that he'd saw my daughter....nothing. I started working about three years prior to this and I had a camper that I stayed in when I worked. I had to get away. I went to my camper and just laid on my bed and prayed. Opened my bible to Proverbs 3: 5,6. You see I needed to know God loved me and if I trust him, things will work out. He is who sustains me now. Little by little, with every silent treatment, degrading/devalued remark, or when he just discards me, he eats away at my soul. I guess I'm just trying to figure out why I am on this earth to be treated like this. I don't think God meant for me to feel dehumanized in these ways. I am precious in his eyes. I can't be all I am meant to be and live with this treatment. I need to get strong and stick up for myself!!!!!! We'd "made love" a week prior to all this happening, and there has been none since. He will not even touch me, other than a chicken peck of a kiss in the morning and before he goes to sleep. I don't pursue this as I felt as though I needed to know he wanted ME. This was 4 years ago.
Before we got married he told me he didn't like women "playing games". Once when we had an argument after we'd been married a few years, he told me "it's my way, or the highway". Should have taken him up on that! The highway looks pretty good right now! I just figured he was trying to overcome some of the baggage he had acquired in his last marriage.
My daughter commented that "He sure smiles a lot around other people, but when he's with you he frowns and looks so unhappy". He puts on a great act. Claims to be a Christian. People would not understand what I've been going through. I'd talk to my pastor, but I think he'd just tell me to be more submissive.
Holidays are a nightmare!! If I want to spend them with my family, I have to go by myself. He always comes up with an excuse as to why he can't go. The first 5 or so years, he always used the excuse that his son and his family were going to come. They only live about an hour away, but they never came. We would spend all our holidays alone.........which, some may say is great, and for a few years, it was okay. But, I love to have family around. It was never just me and him doing fun things together. It was him doing his thing and I doing mine.
His son that lives close by does not come see us. I have often wondered why? He is a different person when his kids are here. I make them meals and join in conversations and try to make them feel comfortable. When my kids are here, he leaves and does anything, so that he doesn't have to be around us. Consequently, my kids do not come see us very often. The last time one of my daughters were here he blew up at me shouting and said, when I tried to draw him in to the conversation, that we were "talking around him". I felt so degraded. My daughter and her children heard it all. She used to think he was wonderful, now she thinks he's an A-hole. This was the first time he actually blew up at me in front of them..I believe it's because when my kids are here, it's NOT ALL ABOUT HIM! He can't handle not being the core of what's going on. They are MY kids, and they are very important to me. He just doesn't like them being around and they bring me such joy! When we go to one of his family get-to-gethers, I am disregarded and basically abandoned. I have came to the point that I don't like doing anything with him or for him. I know I have to leave to stop feeling so bad about things. It's so hard! I know it's not healthy and I fear having a breakdown. I know if something were to happen to me, it'd be just me trying to take care of myself. He is not there for my needs, but I'm supposed to be there for him in everything. I feel like I'm losing myself. I never have a day where I can do just what I want. If I'm doing something he thinks is not worth while, he has me go help him with something. Consequently, I never get anything done I want to. It's not important to HIM.
This is the long and the short of it. There are many times I could talk about that I left out, but I think I gave you the jest of what happens in my home. I have been on this site many times before, having to shut it down, as it made me sick to my stomach learning that this NPD is what I'm dealing with.