The true definition of, “delusion” is as follows: A delusion is a false belief held with absolute conviction despite superior evidence. He was convinced that I was sleeping with every male that I encountered. Seth believed it. It was the furthest thing from the truth.
It’s still ironic to me that he agreed to the divorce in the beginning but when he realized that I was moving on– he lost his mind. In his mind, I was a possession. He owned me. How could I NOT be throwing myself at his feet and begging to work it out. He felt rejected. That was not a feeling that he could handle because in his mind, he is superior.
In April of 2009, and a local wedding coordinator had bought me a gift basket for being a part of the wedding party. It contained lotions and body sprays. At that time, we were co-existing on the weekends yet we were separated. He made a snide comment about “men already buying (me) gifts” to which I explained the true story to no avail. He believed the story that he created. He was convinced that a man had bought me a gift and there was no way that I could change the story in his head.
In June of 2009, I started dating. I didn’t go into it with the intention of dating– I was looking for new friendships outside of my circle. This was the first “date” that I had been on in over nine years– it was an innocent cup of coffee at 9am. It turned into another innocent cup of coffee again at 1pm that same day. Two-plus years later– it is the most solid friendship that I’ve ever had. There have been lots of cups of coffee since then– lots of love and mutual respect. I was successful in my initial quest for friendships but there was a bonus– I gained the most healthy, loving relationship that I’ve ever had. Since the day we separated, this the only person that I have been with.
In his mind— I have been with 190 men in 42 days or less. The scary part– he really believes this. He wanted the courts to believe that I was starting the equivalent of the Red Light District in my neighborhood. On one occasion, I went to a concert with a girlfriend. At that concert, we saw a male friend. We posed for a photo with him. The entire interaction was less than five minutes in length yet he was sure I was having an affair with this person. He told everyone that would listen about this affair.
Another day, I was wine tasting with friends and there was a group photo taken. According to him, I was having an affair with someone in the group yet we’ve never even shaken hands. Months later, I was at another concert– another affair. I’m sure that the male bank teller at my financial institution was on the same list…along with the man who I passed on the freeway at 70mph and the one who I bought broccoli from at the local Farmer’s Market.
There was an email that he blasted to people in the community titled, “Three men in three months“. In this email, he played the victim– the man who’s wife had been having numerous affairs with three men over three months. He put pictures of the men in the email and his aunt’s handwriting narrated a story that they had concocted. It was surreal– like I was living a bad dream. It was humiliating and I couldn’t stop it. People would approach me and tell me that they encountered him drunk in a bar– rambling and crazy. Everywhere I went– more stories.
It got so bad that I started hearing about these delusions from notable people in the community. The attorney who offered to review my court paperwork personally received a phone message from my ex-husband stating that I was going to start throwing myself at him sexually in exchange for his free services. The owner of a local car dealership who kindly helped me with a car purchase– he received a message from my ex stating the same thing. He was actively trying to “ruin me” in the community and while truly believing the delusional stories in his head.
One Mom’s Battle: Our mission at One Mom’s Battle is to increase awareness of Cluster B personality disorders (Narcissistic Personality Disorder, Antisocial Personality Disorder and Borderline Personality Disorder) and their impact upon shared parenting and the Family Court System which includes Judges, CPS workers, Guardian ad Litems (GAL), Parenting Coordinators (PC), Custody Evaluators, therapists and attorneys. Education on Cluster B disorders will allow these professionals to truly act in the best interest of the children.
History of One Mom’s Battle: In 2009, One Mom’s Battle began with one mother, (Tina Swithin), navigating the choppy waters of a high-conflict divorce in the Family Court System. Since then, it has turned into a grassroots movement reaching the far corners of the Earth. Tina’s battle spanned from 2009 – 2014 during which time she acted as her own attorney. Ultimately, Tina was successful in protecting her daughters and her family has enjoyed complete peace since October 2014 when a Family Court commissioner called her ex-husband a “sociopath” and revoked his parenting time in a final custody order.
Tina Swithin: Divorcing a narcissist? Tina Swithin’s books are available online at Amazon (print, Kindle or audio format). Each year, Tina offers life-changing weekends of camaraderie and healing at the Lemonade Power Retreat. Tina also offers one-on-one coaching services and a private, secure forum called, The Lemonade Club, for those enduring high-conflict custody battles.