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still in love with emotionally abusive ex, driving me crazy

I was in a classic, textbook emotionally abusive relationship for about two years. Friends eventually stopped talking to me, and my family was so desperate to save me, my dad rented a condo in his name and slowly convinced me to move there so I had somewhere safe to live. I finally had enough and moved out in May 2016.

None of my friends or family know I have not quit seeing him since I moved out, over a year and 3 months ago. However, despite going to counseling, spending hours researching his narcissistic abusive behavior and knowing he is a horrible person, he is like a drug to me. I cannot give him up, I am still madly in love with him. He has a power over me I cannot describe. I used to watch Lifetime movies and judge other women for being in this situation. I never thought I would be those women.

My quality of life has severely taken a toll since I met this man. I have been suffering depression because of it now for two years.

Since I have moved out, I have been merely a toy to him. Something he plays with when he is bored, something he ignores when he comes across other new shiny toys to play with. "new" women do not stick around for more than two weeks. He always comes back to me. He comes back to me, so sweet, telling me he is in love with me, telling me we are soulmates, and I know it's not true, I know he is using me, I know he is lying to me. Yet I swoon over these words, I feel such love and attraction for him. I have gone on dates and in over a year I have not met one man I am attracted to . I have met a couple of really great men that I feel completely emotionally dead towards - I cannot feel attraction anymore to anyone but my ex.

His "sweet" side will only last about a week. He can then completely flip into his "other" side, which is emotionally shut off, mean, argumentative, demeaning and condescending. He will call me and tell me he misses me, he is in love with me and can't wait to see me. The next week he ignores me. If i text or call him, he is annoyed with me, mean to me, puts me down, and when I cry, he tells me how "Crazy" I am, how "unstable" I am, and tells me "this is the reason he left me". He picks at me and pokes at me until I cry , then tells me how unstable I am for crying and being emotional. Everything I do is wrong, everything I say he is annoyed with. He acts like I am the dumbest person on the planet, yet I keep trying to win his approval over and over.

I cannot find anyone else attractive but him. I yearn for him. I find myself comparing every single man to him. I had five amazing dates with a man who is so sweet and gentle. When we shared our first kiss, I felt disgusted, I could only think of my ex. I woke up the next day, completely depressed and emotional and called my ex, begging to see him. It was an "off" week for him, he yelled at me for being so crazy, he screamed that he has "stuff to do" and can't see me. I begged and pleaded that he allow me to come over for just 10 minutes. I went over there, and he was so awful to me, and then at the ten minute mark, told me to leave or he would call the police and to not call him.

I know he will call me in a few days telling me how much he loves me.

Never in my life have I ever met someone who can treat another human as horribly as he treats me. He has no ability to feel love, empathy, sympathy for anyone - especially me. I am a punching bag to him. He gets to treat me however he wants. No matter how much abuse I endure, I always go back to him. The more he pushes me away, the more I yearn for him.

I know he is a narcissistic abuser, I know I am crazy and I know this will go on for as long as I will allow it. No matter how much I know I will never understand him, I continue to ask myself "why" and "what can I do " and "how can someone treat someone so awful". I feel like a victim of Stockholm Syndrome. It is ruining my life. I am so depressed and angry. It has ruined my relationship with my family, and I am no longer the happy, funny girl I once was. It is completely controlling my life.

I do not know what to do. This is ruining my life. My life is passing me by and I'm letting this person - who I sometimes wonder how is he even human with such a lack of emotion - completely ruin me. Meanwhile, his life goes on as normal.

I have been to counseling. I have been to support groups. I have taken anti depressants. If i do not get this man completely out of my life for good, I do not know what will become of me. I cry so many nights as I am right now. I spend so much time wondering what I did to make him hate me or what I could do to win his love and devotion.

I cannot admit this to anyone. At this point I feel stupid for even admitting this to my therapist. I know how crazy it is. I am dying for help. What will it take? What can I do to get him out of my head, out of my life?
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replied February 13th, 2018
I just read your post before attempting to write mine. A lot of people won’t understand u but I do because I have been In that exact position. I’m 31 and been w this guy 9 years. I went through that and after a year of him having me on that limbo, he finally made me his girlfriend. I was thrilled I thought this was all I wanted. Well 6 years later and with a 3 year old now, in retrospect it was the worst thing ever. He’s still extremely emotionally abusive, controlling jealous yet he cheats. He has put me through hell and I’m still struggling to gain the strenght to leave him and now it’s hatgwr
Since we have a child together. I can tell u it doesn’t get better. It gets worse. If u can cut him off, go through the emotions and give urselfmtime to move on. Don’t date instead do things for urself. Go to the gym find a hobbie etc. I’m tryong to do that now. Gd luck.
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