I didn’t write this letter, and a few of the specifics are different from some of my experiences (as they will be for all relationships), but yes, this.
This is exactly what it’s like, and what you’re in for when you end up with a person like this. Been there, done that, got that t-shirt. Beware that whirlwind and feeling of having hit the jackpot indeed – especially when it comes very rapidly on the heels of his last relationship (which should be a major red flag by itself)…
Whirlwinds like this do sometimes work out, but if you’re all caught up with someone and the description below even remotely matches your ga-ga state, please do at least consider the possibility that things are not quite what they appear at first.
The letter below is taken from Caught in the Cogs (who adds a lot of interesting commentary that a person might want to be aware of), who in turn got it from the About Relationships blog. The post doesn’t seem to actually be on the original site any more, but there are a lot of good links about dealing with these types, how to identify cheating, etc., so I’m leaving the link in (also for clear attribution purposes, too, of course). It’s long, but please do read through to the end; it’s well worth it.
Interestingly, a psychiatrist of my acquaintance, alarmed when I mentioned a Dr. Jekyll/Mr. Hyde in my own life, told me that this pattern is the single most common presentation of bipolar disorder. I can now totally believe it.
A Letter to The New Girlfriend of Dr. Jekyll & Mr. Hyde
by Dr. M. Analise Torelli, PhD.,MA,MSW,BS.
Dear New Girlfriend,
Let me preface this letter to you by acknowledging that you will not believe a word of it…just yet. Not for months, or even a year or two…or three…In fact, you may read it and go running to your amazing new man, your special King and newly found ‘soulmate’ for some reassurance that none of this is true. And he WILL tell you it is all a lie. He WILL deny everything. And I also expect that he will tell you it’s all the imaginings of his bitter ex-psycho GF. Oh yes, he will say, you are SO much better, his Princess, his One and Only Truest Love. And he will warn you not to ever believe a word of anything ANYONE ever says about him…unless it is all GOOD, of course! If you find out my real name, he will convince you most of all that you must never listen to a word I say or write, and that you should never EVER try to talk to me. You will believe everything he tells you. You will. I know. Because I did too. Once Upon a Time.
Right about now YOU, as the next one in line, are feeling like you hit the jackpot and won the lottery all at once. You could not be happier! You are happy, just deleriously HAPPY! You are dancing on cloud nine and ten and counting all your lucky stars. In less than a few weeks since you met Mr. Wonderful…online…of all places, you think you’re so completely ‘in love’ that you hardly know what to do with yourselves. You almost hold your breath until the next time you are together. He takes your breath away to just see that million dollar smile of his! Your heart just melts at the very sight of him. Already you are almost inseparable. In such a short time, days, or mere weeks, you crave him, and you are together every chance you can get. You have already been on some of the most romantic dates of your life in just a few weeks of first meeting. He is Romeo…and you are his new Juliet! The ‘ONE’…in a line of others before you who were also the “ONE’. But let’s not go there just yet. Let’s just stay with this dream for a little while. It feels SO good. How do I know? Because I was in that exact same Fairy Tale dream, not as long ago as you may have been told.
Right about now you are telling yourself, “Yes, but I am different than you”, even ‘better’ somehow. You say to yourself “I am the girl he always dreamed of”, and you know this because he tells you so. You are the one he has been waiting for all his life. The one who is so special, that only you can heal his troubled heart. YOU’RE the one to make him happy, his ‘everything’! He says it all the time. So it must be true. You know, without a doubt that you are meant to be together. It is fate and destiny. What did he ever do without you. You are his precious angel. It is the truly truest TRUE love story, if ever there was one! Even better than in the movies. He is your leading man. You are his leading lady. Your stomach is full of butterflies, you hardly sleep, you hardly can eat, and he is on your mind day and night. Well, those aren’t really ‘butterflies’ girl, that’s your ‘gut instinct’ giving you warnings. But you won’t pay attention. And neither did I. It’s all so deliciously GOOD!
Spoiler Alert: It feels SO good, because it is TOO GOOD TO BE TRUE…none of it is true, it’s just his Dr. Jekyl side that he lets you see at first. His best side, his ‘good’ image and persona are all he allows you to see right now. It’s his best BAIT to lure you in unsuspecting. Keeping you unaware of his true nature,…what you do not know are his dark secrets that he keeps hidden about himself. His Mr. Hyde side is the REAL DEAL and is saved for later, for when he grows tired of you (and he will, even if you cannot imagine it right now), he will show the dark abusive side only much later, when you begin to see that the reality and this dream are two different things. Only when you begin to question him. If you saw his real persona, the dark and dangerous Mr. Hyde side, you would RUN!…okay, you can go back to the dream now…
Close your eyes and count all those thousands of yummy kisses he has given you by now. Oh yes, if there is something he is an expert at, it is those kisses. (I will not tell you that they will dwindle and stop eventually. Right now you only imagine kissing him FOREVER and ever and ever!) Why! Sometimes you feel you can almost fly!, and you are probably floating on air everywhere you go. Your head is up there in the clouds. You see rainbows and sunshine and shooting stars. But you have no idea how thin that air will get one day. And I really don’t want to warn you. Not yet. I truly DO wish that the dream you are currently dreaming was as real as it seems to be for you. I do. I really really do.
It goes something like this; Every waking moment you have thoughts of HIM. Magical, wonderful perfect HIM. And your world has suddenly, VERY suddenly, taken on the rosiest hue! You are in Heaven. He is an Angel, brought to you by God himself as a gift, just for YOU! You must’ve been rewarded (finally! whew!) for something you did right. Your prayers have been answered…at last! He is a dream. A God. A funny cuddley snuggley playful little boy sometimes. How cute is that?! So thoughtful and loving and tender and sweet. So affectionate, he can’t keep his hands off of you. Oh! you feel so good and happy just to BE with him. And you tell him…and tell him…and tell him, ALL the time, just how amazing, sexy, smart, handsome, remarkable, perfect and special…and essential…he is to you already. In just a few short weeks. You feel you have always known him. You BELONG together. He has become your EVERYTHING very quickly. You have been swept off of your feet…literally! And there is your Prince right there to catch you! What a lucky lucky girl you are. Luckier than anyone in the entire universe. Lucky lucky YOU! You hum and sing as you skip down the street. It’s all SO hunky dorie wonderful. And the Tooth Fairy, Santa Clause and Leprechans really DO exist after all! Isn’t it incredible? This must be REAL love!
You are certain that there is no other man on earth more attentive and more of a gentleman. There is no one EVER who could be SO much fun. Everywhere you go he is always holding your hand, or his arm is around you and he is constantly kissing on you,…oh yes!…all those wonderful delightful sexy kisses. Again, on every street corner, everywhere you go. Nonstop kisses. You can’t get enough of him. Right? You haven’t felt this way in the longest time and never thought you would feel this way again, but here you are…already so deeply in love with the ‘love of your very life’.(in record time! WOW, is this what swooning feels like?) Am I right so far? He is just that special. He is already your drug and you are addicted to him, to his very touch, his stories, his wit and humor, his compassion, his utter CHARM…to HIM…the whole package. Come to think of it, his charm is so utterly charming itself, could there be anyone more charming than he is? What a Prince among Princes, and YOU are his Princess in your very own real life Fairy Tale Love Story. How do I know this? Because it was the SAME dream, the same Fairy Tale Love Story…the same exact things he said and did with ME. But don’t believe that. Right now, anything I say to you cannot be true. I am the Evil Witch EX who just wants him back and is sorry she ever left him. (NOT!) Isn’t this who I am in the Dream?
By now he has told you all the ‘stories’ of how his EX’s were so horrible to him, that they just did not appreciate him, and they neglected his ‘needs’ and were abusive and critical and made him feel very bad about himself. If he hasn’t yet, he WILL very soon. Perhaps right now he is pretending everyone is friendly so you aren’t scared away. He knows to disparage one’s EX is a big RED FLAG and on the list of things NOT to say to YOU!…Most likely he has ignored this dating rule though. You will come to notice with time that the ‘rules’ don’t apply to HIM.
Oh! how those witches, those critical nags, haranged him and took everything from him and made him cry. His poor heart was broken, stomped on and smashed to a million peices by those psycho bitches! Awwww, how could they hurt such a wonderful darling adorable man such as he? Oh yes! Did I mention that they all had ‘issues’ and too many ‘problems’ and were ‘bad’ people? Oh sure, they were all probably, just like he says, even ‘psychopaths’ and liars themselves. They just never could ‘trust him’(don’t ask yourself why that is just yet, it may take you out of the dream you are in! Blame them too! Cling to his version that it was ‘all their fault’) Yes! It must be true, because even his family is backing him up on this as they all nod in unison when he tells you how terrible his last relationship was…the one with ME…just before YOU. Couldn’t be the entire family is just that much in denial and dysfunctional…right? I can assure you they are all well aware of the trouble he has caused, but their lips are sealed…They have found ways to punish him and cut him out within their circle, but they will never let you know this…let’s not go there right now either. Right now YOU are the CURE. They are counting on this working out…THIS time he has found someone so special that he could NEVER raise his voice or fist to you, but if he does, it means you were not the right ‘ONE’…nevermind that if it doesn’t work out, HE and THEY will blame YOU next. You did not hear this from me.
Go back to the Dream…and your dream man…and those dreamy dreamy kisses….
Don’t you agree that it is such a pity that this perfect man kept finding Miss Wrong all of his life. I mean, the poor pitiful fella has just had the worst luck with women hasn’t he? He has tried and tried with those witches. He certainly has. He never gives up, even if it means stalking them…but that’s also for much later. YOU are here now to change all that for him and make him so so so happy! He deserves the BEST! And the BEST IS YOU! WooHoo! Yep! Never fear…YOU are here to rescue him and make him feel better. You won’t make the same mistakes like they all have made. You will treat him better than all the rest…because you are the right ‘ONE’. After all he and his family say you are SO much better than any of his EX’s…and you believe it. I remember this part of the dream too. When I was told that I was “a breath of fresh air compared to his last girlfriend” as they all nodded in unison and made remarks about her that I almost could not hear under their breath. Yeah. Poor Prince Charming. All of his Ex’s were just awful. So terrible. Just horrible. But too bad for THEM now! It’s their loss! It’s all in his PAST! He’s all YOURS now! Wheeeeee!
Well, let’s not burst your delightful bubble just yet. It’s fun for me to reminice too. To remember the same EXACT things I felt, as I write this letter to you. Oh yes, I remember it all too well. In exactly the very same way. And that’s because he did exactly the SAME things. Said the very same things. Went on the very same dates, to the very same places. Held MY hand in the same way in the car with the same music on too. Looked into my eyes and kissed me a billion times. Just like he does with you. Pay attention here. He did the exact SAME things, and I felt the EXACT same way you do right now. A couple of years from now, (give or take) this point will be important to you as you sort your way out of the ashes of your life, the damage and cognitive dissonance that you will be left with after the dream is over and you wake up to the nightmare you are really in. Right now there is nothing I can say to you that you will believe. In fact, you must already view me as the sour or bitter EX. That’s the role I am cast in now, in this story you share with HIM.
You have probably been told that the break up was mutual, or even that HE broke it off and he tells you he is sure that I still ‘want him’. Am I close? It would take a miracle on the MOON for him to EVER be truthful and tell you that it was his RAGE, his lies, his ‘keeping his options perpetually open, his words, his neglect…the hours on porn and singles sites, his abuse, his excuses, the cheating, his always blaming others…that cost us our ‘Dream’. The truth is that I left and moved so far away…SO far away, where I was safe from both his lethal violent side and his charm. I am not angry, and I certainly don’t want to be with him. Hello? Pay attention to logistics here and wonder why a woman would move SO far away and leave behind such a ‘wonderful man’, and everything she loved?!! I wrestle with myself not to say this. But the truth is that of all the people I have met in my entire life, I wish with all my heart that I had never met him. NEVER. Not ever. I could not mean this more. And because I truly thought I loved him once too, that makes me incredibly sad.
His lies robbed me of the information I needed to make the important choices for my life and those I love…his lies cost ME dearly. His abuse ripped my soul and took my health. I lost my confidence and my always cheerful personality. I lost the ability to trust…so much so that I became an Investigator to help restore truth in other people’s lives. He took from me what I deserved to know. That he was a violent man and had a record of abuse a mile long. I would never have had coffee with him, let alone give him a second look if I had known. And he knows this. He knows this about YOU too. And he will do anything to keep you from knowing the truth, including denigrating me and calling me a liar and saying that I am ‘crazy’ and ‘jealous’ so you will not believe me. I am risking much to try to save you. But you will only realize this later…later when the dream you are in right now comes to an end. I am sad to tell you that it WILL. One day it will. Because if it doesn’t, you will not survive. Either emotionally and spiritually…or even worse…physically. When you wake up one day and see the damage he has really done and does still to everyone who dares to truly love him, including YOURSELF, that’s when your heart will be broken too.
Another SPOILER ALERT: Now comes the part where you must wake up! But you can save this part for when you are ready. Don’t read any further if you want to sleep in just a little bit more. I wish you were ready for some reality right now as I would like to find a way to protect you and spare you from the destructive nightmare that your ‘dream’ WILL become. I wish your dream would last forever. You won’t believe this either, but I do. There will come a day when small chinks in his armor will begin to show thru. A precurser to the big ones. It might happen sooner, or it might happen later. The timing is not relevant. What matters is that just like everything else is the same in this dream you are in at ‘the beginning’, so will ‘the ending’ be…the very same…a nightmare. Perhaps some details will change here and there…but it WILL end, and you will be hurt. Your sweet and giving heart that’s so full of love and stars for him, so full of unabashed joyful promise, so innocent of what’s to come…will one day feel as if it has been broken beyond repair.
NO! you say?! This is real and it will never end. It’s too bad I feel this way, but it will never be like this for YOU. Ah! sweet girl, it will. Unfortunately, it will. He might try harder this time and do better. The dream may last longer this time with you. He may be determined that this time you won’t leave him. Rejection and abandonment are his biggest fears…right up there with exposure. But the minute you become familiar, perhaps a little boring, or doubt him or question him, or wonder and ask for some clarity about his behavior, he will begin the dance of devalue and discarding you. Oh he will NOT discard or leave you. He won’t break up with you all at once. Instead he will begin to torture you with abuse and neglect and blame, cheating and lies. Then when the push and pull, hot and cold rollercoaster ride he takes you on begins in earnest, you will feel it. And it will hurt. If you are anything like ME, (and you are) you will try to fix things, make things go right. You will lay awake in bed alone and long for him to return to that man you first fell in love with at the beginning when your dream was so new and so wonderful. But at this point you will rarely see him again. Instead, he has become the REAL persona that he IS. Mr. Hyde. If the lovely Dr. Jekyl ever comes back, it will only be at brief intervals, until he vanishes forever. Things will never be the same after this. They can’t. Now you know too much about him and he must be sure no one else will know. Now you become the ‘crazy one’ who ‘harangues’ him…and very soon you will be in my shoes…IF you can escape…
Oh, He WILL be Dr. Jekyl AND Mr. Hyde for you off and on, for a while…and then he will turn sour, sullen and furious!…and then sweet and attentive again, then suddenly rage, then just as quickly smile and kiss you, and then grab you by your hair and threaten to throw you down the stairs, then wrap you in his arms and say he is sorry and he loves you and it will never happen again. Then even the fake apologies will stop. Then he will be protective of you…then barrel down the street at 160 kilometers/hr in a rage when he thinks someone cut him off and risk your life. You will begin to notice that he is SO easily offended. He expects absolute ‘respect’ and to be noticed and if his ‘Dr.Jekyl’ act doesn’t garner the attention and admiration he seeks from others, then his ‘Mr. Hyde’ true self will angrily demand that they notice him! Did I mention the temper tantrums? Oh yes! THOSE! No mere 2 year old could out-do HIS ‘pitching a fit’! Yes! The tantrum part is a lot of fun. Very entertaining. He will whine and mutter and hiss and spit too. And when this happens, you will be shocked. To hear a grown man, nearly 50 years old…whine like a little girl, well it’s all so NOT pretty to see. This will continue…In cycles. Wash, rinse and repeat!
He will scream at you, laugh at you and put you down. The tantrums will get louder and longer. He will step on the toes of tiny little elderly ladies and scream at THEM in the street in front of many witnesses. He won’t care! His perfect ‘Father of the Year’ act will falter and he will rage at and hit his kids right in front of you. He’ll no longer try to hide it. He will complain about every other thing and break objects when he is angry. Then he’ll smile and make a joke. He will neglect you for days and then romance you for a few hours. Up and down and all around. Small things at first, then HUGE! He will make you doubt yourself, mock you and tell you how stupid and inadequate you are. He will play mind games in earnest and play them to WIN. And he will be creul. He will slowly, ever so subtly, erode away your dignity and confidence. He may eventually beat you and bruise you too, as he has done this in every other longterm relationship. But he has been in trouble for abuse and violence so many times now that he’s on the radar of the local law enforcement. So it’s possible he may not go quite this far…with YOU…as he knows the next time he gets violent, he will go to JAIL! Literally! But you will be abused. You will cry as much as you smile at this stage. Then, if you don’t leave him at this stage, you will lose that smile, completely.
Your health and appearance will suffer. Your relationships with your family and friends will suffer too because they will begin to notice things about him that they don’t like, and will be puzzled that you stay with him. You will reach out to them and tell them about some problems and things he does, and they will get tired of hearing it when they offer their advice and support and yet see that you stay with him for more. This is when you begin to lose your dignity. You will even question your own sanity to stay with this man, who once was your Prince, who’s issues clearly go beyond the problems of someone who told you he maybe “wasn’t perfect” sometimes.
He will eventually be who he IS. Nothing you can do will prevent his eventual transformation back into ‘Mr. Hyde’. He IS a very unstable, angry, violent and selfish man with a personality disorder and character flaws that you cannot heal. And being with him will destabalize YOUR life, even your children’s lives and affect them!… If you don’t believe this right now, promise yourself that you will get out immediately at the first sign that what I am telling you is true…For THEIR sake, if you can’t leave him for YOURS! After quite a while of this stage, when you keep trying harder to please him…meeting all his needs…you will notice he will be up all night,…night after night on porn for hours. Hours and hours and hours. Looking like an absolute BOZO the CLOWN totally oblivious you are standing thereas he’s stupidly staring at, talking to and masturbating to some naked women on a computer screen with his pants around his ankles. Just like some common heavy breathing pervert. Yep! That’s the same Prince Charming you are with…right this minute! Take a good look! Not quite the picture of who he seems to be right now, is it? There will be hang up calls and calls from Other Women asking for him and wondering who you are? You will begin to recognize the signs of deceit,(such as, leaving in the morning wearing his ‘special underwear and after-shave on Tuesdays and Thursdays and returning home smelling like…well…SEX…later ) You WILL begin to notice things are a becoming a little ‘different’, even though he is well practiced at hiding and denying that he cheats…And DO listen girl. No matter what he says, how he lies, how he denies…he DOES cheat. And he WILL eventually cheat on YOU.
Oh yes, sorry to let you in on his dirty little secret life so soon. You see, no amount of your ‘trying’ and loving him really really good and really really hard,…will change this about him. Eventually he WILL seek more attention from others. It does not matter how pretty you are, or what a good cook you are, or how sexy and wonderful you are in bed or in the kitchen. It doesn’t matter if you are as gorgeous as ‘Hollie Berri’ or ‘Elizabeth Hurley’ and ‘Christie Brinkley’. Being one of the prettiest, smartest and wealthiest, most talented women in the world won’t spare you or make you more special to him…later…when the newness wears off…and it will!. It won’t matter if you dye your hair like mine and make yourself over to look like ME! (nice try BTW, coz now you kinda look like my cousin) His need for attention and validation is endless and vast and no one woman can fill him up…right now he assures you that you are all he needs…but it’s just another one of his lies.
There is so much more to tell you, but I will spare you the rest, I think you have heard enough to figure your way out, eventually…when you need to save yourself! I can only hope that you have paid attention. But I’m fairly certain that you won’t, just like I wouldn’t have either. Right now you love this Fairy Tale True Love Story and imagine with all your might that you really truly love him. That what you have with him was ‘meant to be’. You have no idea that the man you love right now does not exist. You will cling to this ‘dream’…and HIM for dear life.
You think he loves you. He tells you he loves you SO much. You believe it with all of your heart. And it is so sad for me to tell you this too, but he does NOT know how to love anything or ANYONE…but himself. He can sure fake it to be even better than the real thing though! He is not really Prince Charming, and more than a Narcissist. Because he is also violent and has been in trouble with the law so many times, because of this he is technically classified as a Psychopath. I can assure you that he is dangerous, in SO many ways. Your spirit, soul…heart and body are in mortal danger, the longer you are with him. So please. Just for a moment, stop to ponder this. Right now, He has convinced you…ever so swiftly…engaged you SO fast…bonded with you so tightly…WHY the rush?, is it because you and HE are just that special? Is there really such a thing as ‘fate’? Or was it his intention to romance you so quickly that your head would be in the clouds and you would not pay attention to those ‘Red Flags’..in hopes that you might never find out the truth that this ‘dream’ he created for you was well practiced with all the manipulations he perfected on the “ONE”s before you. He hopes you will not see these truths about HIM. The truth is that you are really in a nightmare and you won’t know it… until the damage is done and it’s too late for you too…
That’s one truth I hope with all my heart…that doesn’t turn out to be true…