Berlin: "Hahaaa :) But that guy's gay! The '*****' you know is anything but! How are you doing. Sitting at Tasha's?"
Me: "Frankly I wouldn't be able to testify to the gayness or not of the '*****' I know, having not ever experienced him in any other way other than cyberspace, where anything is possible and fantasy and projection abounds!!"
"Tasha's was lovely. Now getting my boys ready for a Halloween party this afternoon."
"You having a happy Sunday?"
Berlin: " Jeez, can't believe a whole week zapped past again. Actually we wanted to meet last week: should aim for sometime in the next few days. Things have been a bit crazy here at work"
Me: "I'm free this afternoon after I drop my boys"
Berlin: "Nope. Taking my daughter to the movies"
Me: "I'm heading out of town on business on Thursday, so it would have to be before I go, or the week after I get back: lots to catch up on after being off for 7 weeks!"
Berlin: "What happened, health wise, after you were in hospital? What did they find and how was it fixed?"
I explained the stuff, briefly
Me: "Thanks for being there when I started crashing. It must have been quite hectic for you. I was taking major strain and you brought me some light in that very dark place.
Berlin: "No it wasn't hectic. OK maybe a little intense towards the end. I didn't have a problem with that, I don't let friends down. Only when that episode happened with the girl on AM and I thought it was you...that freaked me out a bit. Looked as if you were getting hectically possessive then so I felt I had to withdraw, But I'm glad you're better now and that things worked out in your favour in your company."
Me: "You'll have to tell me that story properly sometime. Sounds bizarre. Can't say I completely understand it yet..."
Berlin: "Will do. Have to apologise! I really thought it was you! And I still don't quite understand it myself."
Hmmmmm. So is this a genuine man, who cocked up this thing with me really badly and broke my heart inadvertently? Or is he another narcissist that preys on women and lies to them to get what he wants? My friend Nikki was saying to me on Saturday night that we both need to be careful about seeing narcissists everywhere and responding to every man as if he is one. I think I'm more afraid of missing the signs and then realising, when it's too late, that I'm down the rabbit hole again!
So: what are my red flags:
- He got angry with me when we were chatting online when I challenged him about being online on Whatsapp after he had told me he was tired and gong to sleep. He said his wife had called, sick and distraught, and that he didn't like me 'checking up on him'.
- When he hit on my friend, Nikki's, dating profile he presented himself as single. To me, on Ashley Madison, he said he was married.
- He did disappear on me completely when he came back from his overseas trip. Is his reason legit or a lie? And why didn't he just talk to me about it before he decided to cut me off?
- He seduced me thoroughly online: I was hooked really quickly and felt a very deep connection with him really fast. He invited me to Berlin. I would have gone if I could have got a Visa in time. The Narc sites I read say this is often a red flag - too close too fast. But then I reciprocated, so what does that make me?
- He or she rarely takes responsibility for problems and instead blames them on everyone else.
- The narcissist expresses little emotion, particularly during conflict with you. When you do express emotion, he or she blames you for doing so. It's a subtle form of abuse.
- He or she drains you, but thrives on your energy. Consider how much energy you are expending on this relationship... my guess is that it's your effort keeping the relationship alive. You're most likely exhausted emotionally and physically because you do all of the planning, all of the apologizing, and all of the work to 'fix' what is wrong.
- This person is charming, often a flirt, and thinks very highly of himself.
- This person is irresponsible with his finances, career, drinking, and/or keeping his home in order.
- Jekyll & Hyde: This person is so incredibly endearing, but when you say one thing wrong, she snaps at you. You walk on eggshells wanting to do everything right.