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  #1  
Old 08-21-2014, 04:28 AM
thinkpeople0000 thinkpeople0000 is offline
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Hi everyone!

First of all I am so glad that this forum is here. I was in a polyamorous relationship for about a year. I had been married for 10 years (I'm a fairly straight female) before I started a second relationship with a married man in an open marriage. This other man introduced me to polyamory which I quickly became very fond of and found it to be the perfect lifestyle for my current husband and myself. However my relationship with the other man went fairly smoothly for the first 6 months before he started acting very strange.

I will keep this short as not to bore anyone, however has anyone in their experience with polyamory encountered someone with narcissistic personality disorder? I hope no one takes offense to me even asking this question, because everything I've learned about polyamory is about being loving to more, working hard to be communicative and empathetic, and forming bonds with many. However in this case, in the end I felt like I was just used as another notch in the belt and after being bombarded with love and growing very attached to this man, I was eventually treated without any kindness, respect...but rather coldness and detachment. And then he was off to his next open relationship. I've recovered from the break up now, however it wasn't pretty.
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Old 08-21-2014, 12:28 PM
bookbug bookbug is offline
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I will respond at length, but need to get ready for work. But yes in the narcissistic personality disorder - in the female of the couple I joined. It's a mindfuck for sure.
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Old 08-21-2014, 03:59 PM
thinkpeople0000 thinkpeople0000 is offline
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Please do. I would love to hear your take on things. Total mindfu**! I'm exhausted from it. Thanks in advance for sharing
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Old 08-21-2014, 10:20 PM
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MusicalRose MusicalRose is offline
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I think I've been the victim of narcissism for two relationships in a row now. Obviously this is just based off of what I've read online, but it seems to make sense for a lot of things I've experienced.

I know that both did an incredible job of making me feel like I was crazy until I stop letting them in my head in such a way.
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Old 08-22-2014, 03:16 AM
bookbug bookbug is offline
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The female in the couple I joined has definite narcissistic tendencies - but it took me and her husband a long time to see the patterns and understand what we were seeing.

She can present very well, being fun and spontaneous. And in fact was not only supportive of out threesome (we hadn't yet worked out whether it was to be a triad or a vee - or something in between), she actively encouraged it. Until she went 180 degrees and didn't. And then it got weirdly delusional. The husband and I would decide it would be fun to take a walk, and ask her if she wanted to go. She would decline and then later accuse us of excluding her by taking the walk she didn't want to go on. Apparently, if she didn't want to go, none of us should?

There are parade of examples like that with which I won't bore you, but it was hard to identify the narcissism because she was so passive-aggressive, usually painting herself as a victim. Then there was the unpredictable anger, for which there was never any apology for her over the top behavior, even when she later found she had jumped to conclusions - and I am talking about mundane things; not those issues that were threesome related. Usually the rage was a special hell she reserved for her husband.

Needless to say, I eventually ended up leaving and a year after that, they started divorce proceedings.

When her husband realized there was like a mental health issue, he tried to address it. They saw two marriage counselors to no avail. It eventually became impossible for him to ignore such assertions that her feelings were more valid than his and she shouldn't have to try to learn to co to control her temper - even though she had wondered aloud if she was emotionally abusive. Even though she didn't want the divorce, she was seemingly incapable of doing the bare minimum it would have taken to save her marriage.
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Last edited by bookbug; 08-22-2014 at 03:18 AM. Reason: Clarifying
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Old 08-22-2014, 07:59 PM
thinkpeople0000 thinkpeople0000 is offline
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Thank you so much for sharing your experience. I truly believe my husband and I are meant to be poly and I was very excited about starting this with who I thought would be a great guy. Unfortunately, I think that it took me awhile to notice all of the red flags popping up and see that he actually is not healthy mentally. In this case, I believe my ex-boyfriend was/is using polyamory as a means to be a predator. The entire relationship he was trying to hook up with multiple women and I just had to be okay with it because he was poly. However when my husband and I also branched out and I approached him before during and after to talk about his emotions regarding it, he flew into a rage. And I mean calmly he said he was fine with it, but disappointed in me. But in regular conversations, he would be patronizing and condescending and yell at me, unprovoked. Ultimately, I realized it was an emotionally abusive situation. When the time is right, my husband and I will branch out again. In the meantime, I'm a little guarded:/
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Old 08-23-2014, 12:26 AM
bookbug bookbug is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thinkpeople0000 View Post
Thank you so much for sharing your experience. I truly believe my husband and I are meant to be poly and I was very excited about starting this with who I thought would be a great guy. Unfortunately, I think that it took me awhile to notice all of the red flags popping up and see that he actually is not healthy mentally. In this case, I believe my ex-boyfriend was/is using polyamory as a means to be a predator. The entire relationship he was trying to hook up with multiple women and I just had to be okay with it because he was poly. However when my husband and I also branched out and I approached him before during and after to talk about his emotions regarding it, he flew into a rage. And I mean calmly he said he was fine with it, but disappointed in me. But in regular conversations, he would be patronizing and condescending and yell at me, unprovoked. Ultimately, I realized it was an emotionally abusive situation. When the time is right, my husband and I will branch out again. In the meantime, I'm a little guarded:/
I've thought about how to identify those who are those I do not want in my life in any way shape or form. The trick is to watch emotional reactions to situations versus what they say. While I know poly people often struggle emotionally at first, mentally healthy people are aware of the disparity between their emotional reactions and what they think logically.

So here are some of the things I look for:

- a different set of expectations for your behavior than they have for themselves. Again, this is how they react emotionally; not what they say. They will say they believe in fairness, but when you call them on the fact that they are not behaving that way, there will ALWAYS be an excuse for why it doesn't apply this time.
- there's that old bit of wisdom about watching how someone treats the wait staff. If they treat the wait staff badly chances are they will treat you badly.
- and to spot a narcissist in particular, just take your attention off of them for a minute, this will often invoke rage.
- never taking any responsibility for anything. Any unhappy situation is always your fault 100%.
-black and white thinking
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  #8  
Old 08-23-2014, 12:46 PM
thinkpeople0000 thinkpeople0000 is offline
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Thank you so much and this is great advice. I wish I'd had it before I started this relationship! but hindsight 20/20 and another lesson in life that I will learn and grow from.

I think it was a new experience and very exciting and I expected him to lead the way since he had been poly for much longer than me, so I trusted him when he told me how I should react (yes v naive).

Also the majority of the relationship was long distance, so it was harder to see his facial expressions (and the mask slipping). But when we did get together the red flags were much more obvious. He was blatantly rude to me...and the wait staff now that you mention it. Even Starbucks baristas!! How can you be rude to them?

Well what's done is done and I'm learning to let go. I did love him very deeply at the beginning before his other cold and patronizing personality came out.

Thanks again for your replies and advice. I truly appreciate it and needed it!
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Old 08-23-2014, 03:52 PM
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Mignonne Mignonne is offline
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I've had this happen to me so many times I have lost count, I don't think it's the same because in my case I am the female unicron (lol) that many couples are hunting.

So, I would get involved, become attached, and then realize they wanted to move on or I was just another "notch in the belt" as you so aptly put it. They didn't want anything long-term even though I would be led to believe it.

In some cases the female (often the instigator) would become jealous or start issues with me even though in most cases I was more attached to her than her boyfriend! Any problems that would arise between them would somehow be my fault and then I'd have to leave, heartbroken and confused.

These experiences have left me jaded and very wary to date people already in relationships, I want to say age has always been a factor but I'm not even sure about that anymore.
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  #10  
Old 08-23-2014, 11:32 PM
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While not poly, my older brother suspects that my youngest brother has narcissistic personality disorder, due to how many symptoms he exhibits. This makes it a complicated subject for me, because I love my brothers, and it is hard to see how much trouble my youngest brother has gotten himself into, and how he still continues to get himself in trouble with his hard-to-impossible demands, double standards, manipulativeness, competitiveness, argumentativeness, drama, bursts of anger, and unwillingness to forgive. He has made enemies and pushed away loved ones. I have had to draw up some of my own boundaries so that he won't excessively exploit me.

I don't feel like he's a bad person, and yet I know he's done some bad things. He's an extremely smart man, quick on his feet, a good entertainer, aspires to great spiritual heights, can be surprisingly candid and considerate, and is admired by his peers and superiors for his wit and wisdom. So he is something of a conundrum. I often don't know whether to feel for him or be exasperated with him.

I've concluded that not all narcissistic people are bad people, but they're certainly difficult people. I think it would help if the narcissistic person realizes they have a problem and is willing to get professional help for it.
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