lengths of relationships

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#1 February 12, 2013 - 10:10am

lengths of relationships

Maybe a silly question, but can someone answer why some relationships last longer than others ? I left a marriage of 17 years because I got sucked in by a narcissist. Over the top fun, pretty, etc. Ironically, she always told me, " she never wanted to date a married man."
Truthfully it was the best time in the whole relationship. Once my separation agreement came through, things started to change. She went from idolizing me to finding faults in almost everything I did. I almost changed every aspect of my life to accommodate her and nothing was ever enough. I was devalued and discarded, but would still take her back in a minute. I miss her terribly. It's very sad. I hear of these relationships that last for a long time. I don't think my girl would have ever gone through with marriage, ever though that was her plan at one time. Are some narcissist content as long as you put up with there crap ? Mine didn't put up with anything. Are there varying degrees ??

April 27, 2017 - 10:07pm

wow It's like a playbook

I went through all the same stuff with my ex NPD/BPD. One week she says wedding bells, ring shopping, grow old together. The love of her life. Two weeks later I'm not the man for her. she just can't keep the spark alive. She moved in and had a fling on the side for the entire time I learned from her sister after she moved out. Lie lie lie. Deny Deny Deny. It's sick and sadistic. The silent treatment. The hoovering. She is in the middle of a full on hoover assault right now. Or at least for the last three days. I've been NC for 6 weeks and she's starting to get pissed. Sort of barking orders to unblock her. Calling from pay phones. Having sister contact me. having other numbers forward texts etc.etc. Even texting my family members. I'm holding strong and not responding and have her blocked in every way. Let her suffer. It's good for her. I don't think anyone has ever done this to her. They have all come crawling back begging for her to reconsider. So she does and then just destroys them. It's sick. Even tattooed my initials on her back. Looney bin.

April 20, 2017 - 1:19pm


It all depends but I know the real reason you're wondering how long relationships last with a N, it's because maybe you wonder how much longer you could have been with this person? I know I wondered the same thing when I had my N relationship... she has a marriage of 22 years (supposedly separated for the past 3 - 5 years), during all this: had an affair that lasted 7 years, had another affair of 2.5 years and then there was me that lasted 6 months before I ended it and this of course without counting whatever she had in between brief breakups, girls night out, etc... so you see, it all depends but one thing is consistent - everyone has an expiration date with them and if it's short or long term don;t you think the quicker you leave the better so the attachment won't be as painful or harder to let go?

July 24, 2013 - 7:03pm

Man, just read your post

This is an eye-opener, kind of. I was with my exN for five months, I was single and we met on internet dating. At the time I met her she had several guys on the boil. She did the D&D to both of them, and now she has done it to me too even though I'm the one who broke it off with her (she arranged events so that I'd get pissed-off with her and leave, and then after I called her on her abuse she phoned me up in tears and told me it was all MY fault and she couldn't stay with someone like me!).

Anyway, the same pattern almost exactly. One of the guys was married. He was a builder and he'd been fixing her front path. The path was left half-finished and she was angry as hell about it, giving me this story about how this guy had been doing the work for her (she said she'd been paying him) and had 'suddenly' confessed that he'd fallen completely in love with her and that he was going to leave his wife and children to be with her. She acted disgusted and took the moral high ground, like "what kind of scum-bag man would do that?" But I now suspect that she had charmed him deliberately and had maybe been having an affair with him. That makes more sense doesn't it? She was very attractive but it's hardly as if the guy would just drop onto one knee and declare his love and be prepared to leave his wife and kids without her having given him some incentive to do so, right?

Time went on in the relationship and I saw a photo of this builder guy. She'd taken it of him setting the front fence posts in concrete, his shirt off . . . it reminded me of the times she photographed me, on holiday swimming in a lake, and when I started fixing things around her property too, re-landscaping her whole garden for her!! Like making me think we're really building a life and home together (she wanted me to move in almost from the start), and flattering my ego like she enjoys my body. Only it wasn't in a loving way - I was being totally objectified, used as a sexual toy, and the photographs were being taken as trophies - yuck.

The builder guy had left under a dark cloud and she was a bit vague about it, and she held that power over him of being able to tell his wife and wreck his marriage even though she claimed at the time that was her daughter's idea.

The other guy she was dating at the time I met her she claimed was a just another 'friend.' He was a solo father with two kids and my heart goes out to the guy. She D&D'd him the same week she met me because I guess I was a more interesting prospect at the time. How do I know she wasn't having sex with him too? I've been to the STD clinic by the way. Anyway, the guy got really angry about it. He followed us up the street in his car once soon after, and then someone was coming in the nights and putting 'user' in bricks on the front path. Could have been either guy or another one she D&D'd. Her dughetr got the cops to come round and I thought at the time it was strange how reluctant she was to accept any help from them - now I can guess why, she didn't want the truth to come out. She'd already left the town she lived in previously, probably for similar reasons; there were so many similar stories of how previous guys had misused her and then stalked her afterwards. She'd bought her new house with money from the divorce settlement with her rich ex-husband who she treated with open contempt and indifference, the father of her kids.

These were all pretty gigantic red flags but instead I turned them into things that validated her as a 'damsel in distress'. As someone on this site said, sometimes a knight in shining armour is just a retard in aluminium foil!!! LOL. I think this is the myth of the Medusa too. Suddenly you become aware - you're looking at a monster that was once a beautiful chaste woman, but it's too late, you've already given your heart and you get turned to stone. I so much hope that I can love and trust again after this but it has really rocked me. It was the wake-up call I needed but God, what a thing to go through. There's no justice, closure, no clarity on exactly how much of events she manipulated etc. or how much she lied. You've just been used by someone who's so insane they can't even recognise how despicable they are. They have all the reasoning power of a machine, there's no use dwelling on it or hoping they'll change, they really do feel nothing deep down despite all their claims and tantrums and tears.

Sorry to hear you got duped and I hope it all works out for the best for you Bro.

February 12, 2013 - 8:29pm

She sounds like a narcissist,

She sounds like a narcissist, but even if she wasn't...affairs rarely ever make it across the finish line. lol You know what I mean? When they hit the light of reality, they wither.

She was an exciting escape from your marriage. You were also an escape for her. When you both actually tried to make it into a real relationship, it died on the vine.

Affairs often take place in a vaccuum. Once they are out and in the light, they don't last long. Some do, but MOST don't. That's why the 2nd, 3rd, etc divorce rate is higher than first time divorces.

So, this was never going to last. Two people will never make an honest relationship, out of something that in order to take place to begin with, needed lies to make it happen. To see her, you were lying to your wife. To see you, she had to lie for a time. HEALTHY RELATIONSHIPS are not formed on lies.

So, this was not your 'soul mate.' You think she was, and this 'pining' over her, is you romanticizing something that should really have never happened. This is where you need to work on you.

It's not about just accepting this. And I say all this, because if this chick were to saunter back into your life tomorrow...you'd be sucked in again. I see it. Because you're not working on the real issues, and the real issues aren't you dated this awesome woman, and she dumped you.

SHE'S NOT AWESOME. She is a narcissist who used you. You let her. That is what happened. There was no love here. It was a relationship built on lies from day one.

So...once you get to the heart of all this, and she isn't at the heart of it, she's just a symptom of something much greater going on here in your own mind, and life...then, THEN...you will heal. ;)

You story has caught my attention...because I see myself in your story, as well as everyone here sees themselves in your story, too. But, you have to get real with yourself.

This woman is a jerk. Not a good woman. Pretty, ok. Fun, ok. That's about it. Immoral, yes. Mean, yes. Selfish, yes. Narcissistic, yes. You have to ask yourself, why you blew her up into something more than what she ever was.

Plus, you have to forgive yourself for what happened with your marriage. I'm sure there are a lot of layers that when you start unfolding them all, you will begin to heal. But, 'getting over her' is really the least of them.

Just my take. I wish you the best!

February 13, 2013 - 6:01am (Reply to #20)

Thanks Deidre99 great

Thanks Deidre99 great reality check. And believe me she is text book narcissist. The relationship changed for the worst as soon as I got the separation agreement. Then it was a constant battle to appease her.

1) Hot and Cold
2) Never supportive or concerned about my needs
3) total lack of compassion and empathy
4) stopped doing anything for me (cards/ letters)
5) and everything that use to be a positive was turned to a negative
6) constantly letting me know my faults

I could go on and on.

I saw all the red flags for so long and ignored them. I held on to the times when she was ok and it was fun and comforting to be with her. I feel pathetic. I do have to find out why I allowed myself to continue this relationship.

Thank you for your continued help and support.

February 12, 2013 - 1:57pm


I agree it's the thrill of the chase. She saw something she wanted, e.g., character, success, a seemingly strong relationship she could sabotage (obv not that strong given you left). It's likely you deeply cared for her and was too much for her. She is not capable of healthy attachment, so when you made room for her in your life and attempted to attach, she couldn't do it.

It's the same thing over and over again with very slight factual differences, e.g., length of time, actually got married, the N is low or high functioning, is somatic or cerebral. These people are insecure losers that think everyone is exactly like them, that is, out to win at all costs. My relationshit was 20 months. While, at the beginning, I wished it would've lasted longer, I have no doubt it would've ended in divorce.

The facts are these: They will NEVER be the bigger person in a disagreement. They get worse with age -- especially the females, apparently, as their primary lure diminishes. They will never be a good partner.

I just about lost everything and am, as we type, working to recover my career. I am thankful that I can walk away with no ties and that I never had kids with her. (Just typing that made me cringe...) She would've spent the rest of her life trying to one-up me with better gifts, vacations, etc. and would've run them into the ground. She has to win at all costs.

February 12, 2013 - 2:13pm (Reply to #9)

Thanks Femnarc. I just hate

Thanks Femnarc. I just hate sitting here suffering everyday and obsessing while she is out there having a great time and has moved on like nothing has happened. I just need to get to an acceptance stage I guess. It is amazing how you can pine for someone so much when they have treated you so bad.

February 12, 2013 - 3:04pm (Reply to #17)

It may seem she is having a

It may seem she is having a great time and moving on as if nothing happened. Truth is, she will always live in this cycle.
I was off and on with my Narc for the last 6 months. He was continuously dating other women when we split. He would rub in my face how wonderful these women were, what they had that I didnt. Well the funny thing is, they never lasted! His attitude gets worse and worse and he runs them off quicker every time.
I was devastated on the last one. He told me how great she was and how he was falling in love, etc. It lasted less than a week...I went out of town for the weekend and he assumed I was with someone. He lost his mind. Text so many promises of what he would do to get me back, of course he failed to do any of these things while we were together!
Once he figured out I was home and didnt think I was seeing anyone, the promises stopped and the nasty texts started up again.
Its all about the thrill of the chase and wanting what they think they cant have. How dare someone deny them right? He doesnt want me, but sure didnt like the fact that I may have moved on.
I honestly do not see your narc ever being content with what she has once she has it. She will continue to break up relationships over and over I am sure.
Hang in there and realize there is nothing you can do to change this person, it is impossible, they are twisted and do not think as we do.

February 12, 2013 - 5:26pm (Reply to #18)

I agree...it's the same cycle over and over

I was D&D'd in November. ExN has been with at least 3 new women since. I still got hoovers every few days until about 2 weeks ago when I think he secured his latest new supply because I suddenly stopped hearing from him. Then 1 week later, I was hoovered. Nothing for another week and today, he says he passed me in my car (he has no business being around here) and he's raging. Apparently new supply is no good any more. Perhaps he has "moved on" but I don't get the impression that he has been content, at least not for long with any one person. I know it hurts so much to realize that we weren't special but it seems like what they do was not personal / specific to us either. Everyone they bait eventually gets discarded.

February 12, 2013 - 2:20pm (Reply to #10)


That's what messed me up the most -- feeling guilty because I was dying to be with someone who (1) was so seemingly clear on her decision that I was not the one for her and (2) had treated me worse than anyone ever has. It's tough to believe someone can know with seemingly 100% certainty that I'm not the one for her when the break is not due to infidelity/betrayal/etc. This realization has been a huge blow to my ego. To top that off, she's been meaner to me that anyone ever has, yet, I wanted her back.

What's helped me is to realize that these are her true colors. The person I fell in love with, the illusion, doesn't exist. It may take awhile for this to sink in, but it will after awhile. Even after it does, it will still suck and hurt. I'm not sure that will ever change when we remember something/are triggered. I just think we will think about it less.

February 12, 2013 - 3:01pm (Reply to #11)

Yep. clear as a bell on my

Yep. clear as a bell on my end to. At one point she couldn't imagine me not being in her life. a few weeks later. no no you're not for me. you have chipped away at my love for you for a while brutal. have no idea what I even did.

February 12, 2013 - 6:38pm (Reply to #15)

Look at the actions, all of

Look at the actions, all of them....she said she couldn't imagine you not being in her life...and then she was gone. Narcs lie, narcs know what we want to hear, and they have no problem saying it...whether they mean it or not. They know what to say to get us upset and out of balance, and they will say those things as well. They can hurt and nourish as they see fit, but it is all an act.

Searching for the truth, you will keep digging further into an empty hole. There is nothing of substance there, just a narc with a victim they can play with.

If you have them, I recommend putting some of this energy into your children. I hope you ex wife is recovering as well. She must have taken quite an emotional hit as well.

Good luck and keep posting, this is all survivable.


February 12, 2013 - 7:14pm (Reply to #16)

Ex wife

You are correct Done sourcing, I have put my ex-wife through hell. Another thing I have to deal with, because unlike the narcissist in my life I have empathy

February 12, 2013 - 3:49pm (Reply to #12)


It freaks me out that she could've dated me for so long, said she'd marry me tomorrow, and then apparently KNOW I''m not the one for her. It's black and white thinking. There's no gray. It's a borderline trait. She probably is both.

Her mom wanted her to be with "a CEO who makes a million a year." Her mom is on welfare, a chain smoker, no job, used to destroy my kitchen when she visited, can't cook to save her life. She has zero redeeming qualities, and finding those in a person is one of my best attributes (hence used to fall victim to narcs).

I was my ex's 6th move out from living with a dude. At 30, that's a lot, eh??

How can this not be a blessing in disguise??

I'm sure yours is practically identical. Pisses me off that I was so naive, wasted my time and money, and accepted her POS white trash family who didn't accept me. Never again!

February 12, 2013 - 5:41pm (Reply to #14)

"I'd marry you tomorrow"...

Is that a narc line?! I heard it so many times. Once, he said it and a few hours later, he was screaming that I was the most horrible woman he had ever known...no, no, in fact, he was sure that I'm the most horrible person on the planet. Another time, that marriage line was followed by a discard. Thank goodness we found out about their disorder before we married them!

February 12, 2013 - 5:28pm (Reply to #13)

It is really hard to believe!

It is really hard to believe! I have been going crazy with everything that happened to me. What you have to do is read read read,learn about narcs so you can understand that nothing is normal with them. You then need to accept that this is what reality is. I spent 7 years with my best friend and soul mate only to have his wife call and tell me he is married! When I confronted him with that he said he wasn't married. That is my reality! Seven years of my life a huge lie. I can accept this now. I don't like it, but I can't change it. I did nothing wrong, I tried so hard to please him. I did everything he asked. I now need to just move on.

February 12, 2013 - 10:39am

It's about supply!! This is

It's about supply!!

This is not a one size fits all equation !!


February 12, 2013 - 11:43am (Reply to #7)


it's a broad spectrum. There are two female borderlines amongst my close family, i.e. sister etc. I don't know anything about this woman. But supply is supply. One thing which seems common amongst narcs is that they want to know that you would leave your partner for them (and may go all out in getting you to demonstrate and reinforce this, spinning the fantasy out of a life together) whilst not actually wanting you to do it. And if and when you do, they're gone...I would think it almost certain that her claim of not dating married men was a lie with the intention of making you believe that you were 'the one'. The truth is that everyone is the 'one'. Until they're not.

February 12, 2013 - 10:30am


Sorry you are hurting. I got sucked in by an N while married as well. He was very clear he wanted me to leave the relationship and move in with him (he was also married). The list of things he said/did to convince me of this is a long one. However, as soon as I told my H about us, and it was his turn to tell his wife, he turned tail and ran. It's a long, sad story I won't bore you with at this moment. What I will tell you is how helpful this forum was to me in my recovery, because, yes, there are all different types of relationships and all different types of Ns. And on this forum you are bound to run into someone, if not many people, with similar stories as you.

First, I would say that all N's usually have other personality disordered traits, mine was a borderline/N. You should read up on this (if you haven't already) as a lot of women narcissists are borderline disordered as well. If you google "Borderline women" you'll come across a lot of research.

This type of women/man is thrilled by the chase. It is the chase that fuels them, and if the relationship turns 'real' they back away due to their inherent intimacy problems. Of course, you don't know this going in, you think they are completely smitten with you -- b/c they are. They believe they have found the 'one' -- their one true perfect love to make them happy (I was frequently told how "happy" i "Made" him) but what the 'one' doesn't know, is that they've told many others they were the perfect love many times before, and it always ends up the same way. Once the perfect love is in the fold, ie. truly committed (marriage, moving in, leaving other partner) they begin to pull away, to tear you down for the same things they once built you up on. Idolize, Devalue, Discard... rinse repeat.

It is hard for normal people to understand. I have just accepted that my N/Borderline has a chunk of his brain missing. He will never change. If I had stayed with him, he would have turned me into the woman he loathed (i.e., his wife) because of his disorder. No thanks. Consider yourself lucky that you did not end up with her. As you heal, you need to turn toward yourself and ask yourself why you were so eager to believe this woman, and how you can prevent yourself from ever falling into an N relationship again. If you haven't found a therapist yet, I suggest you do so. It helped me tremendously.

My best,

The NEW Jane

July 19, 2013 - 4:12pm (Reply to #4)

we ARE all the same!!

My so-called friend of 10 years pulled a fast one on me!That night was the beginning of the end for me!

The summer that he moved out of his marital home, he called me almost 2 to 3 times a week. Again, I felt so bad for him. His wife left him and he was missing his three kids. However, at the time, I was also going through a rough patch since I had recently had a death in the family. While on the phone, he tried to console me and I tried to console him. I remember saying at the time - he is so different than the arrogant full of himself person that I knew him to be. I put my thoughts aside and continued to converse with him weekly. A couple of months of back and forth phone calls and the next thing you know, he is asking me to go out for a quick drink so that the 2 of us could get out of the house instead of staying home and feeling sorry for ourselves. Another bad move on my part!

The NARC (my friend)was telling me how much he admired me, my strength and that he has had a crush on me since the day he had met me. I was shocked to hear these gentle soft spoken words come out of a man that most people saw as arrogant and full of himself. One thing led to another and before you know it, I was in a full blown relationship with this man that I didn't really like but felt sorry for.

As with all Narcs, (I didn't know this at the time), the relationship went very quickly! He constantly told me how special I was, how he had been searching for a woman like me all his life, how we were soul mates, etc etc etc. I was his everything. The best woman in the world for him. He even told me how I was the perfect woman for him especially since I did not have children of my own but he always knew how much I love children.

A year into our relationship, I started to see a different side to him. And that was when I knew I could not leave my husband for this man! I would be miserable!

To make a long story short, the relationship with the NARC did turn sour. Towards the end his mask came off and I saw him for the monster that he truly was. Funny thing was that I had always seen him as a monster, even when we were just friends. I have no idea how I allowed myself to get involved with him like I did. I simply was not thinking and now I will live with this regret for the rest of my life!

Some days I miss him but I miss the illusion not the real person. The real person is not someone whom I would ever have started a friendship with in the first place. It's actually sad that I had a 10 year friendship with this person and because we gave into our desires that one night, that friendship is now gone. I do miss his kids. I got along with them well. They don't keep in touch no doubt their father has probably asked them not to. I'm sad about that as well. A few months ago I did run into his kids. It was brief. His daughter happened to be on the phone with him at the time and she said guess who I am with right now. When she got off the phone she said- my dad says hi. I just smiled and said thank you. That was it. Hmm, I have no idea what that was all about. Was that an olive branch? I don't know. But I can tell you that I didn't take the bait. A part of me wanted to text a hello back but then I thought, I have come this far, I cannot go back now. I got out of the fog once, I am not so sure I would be able to do it again!

We all make mistakes but it is what we do with those mistakes that shape our future. I am so happy that I was able to see him for who he really was. I will always trust my first instinct from now on because sometimes you really can judge a book by its cover!

As for him- I think he has new supply because I have not heard from him in 11 months. Yup - 11 months and NC! Will I ever hear from him again? I don't know. Does anyone really ever know what goes on in the mind of a NARC?

I am not proud of what I have done. I will live with this for the rest of my life. Trust me when I tell you that I am living my own hell deep inside. But, that's my karma for breaking my marriage vows. I am getting what I deserve! Sometimes I wish karma would pay a visit to the NARC so he too can get what he deserves!

I am sorry that we are all hurting in some way.

April 20, 2017 - 1:13pm (Reply to #5)


Consider yourself lucky, 11 months means the N has found one or several supplies but that doesn't mean they don't hoover just to check up on you. From your post you seem like you have a firm grasp of what really happened and even though you're dealing with emotions of missing and longing for this person you managed to move on so good for you!

February 12, 2013 - 11:25am (Reply to #3)


God, we're all so similar. That STILL never fails to amaze me.

February 12, 2013 - 10:39am (Reply to #2)

Thanks so much. great post

Thanks so much. great post

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