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Old 10th March 2015, 08:15 AM   #1
defeated
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Lightbulb What if my husband is a narcisist...Can he be cured???

My husband is extremely successful, but never feels he's getting enough recognition for his efforts. He's like a machine when it comes to work.
He takes everything I say, no matter how gentle, as a criticism and goes mad about things that he really need not to and are out of his control.
I have posted on here about my marriage difficulties... but after a night of no sleep I am wondering if he actually has a personality discorder and if he has NPD.
If so, should i give up and walk away, or have any of you experienced NPD personally or living with someone that has it?
Is there a cure???? Does anyone know?
Thanks.
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Old 10th March 2015, 11:26 AM   #2
sambrooklands
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Re: What if my husband is a narcisist...Can he be cured???

It is a feeling of obligation to achieve. This is linked to anxiety and depression. You both sound exhausted, and remember things always appear worse at night. Stick to your plan and keep doing the right things. All of his symptoms to me at least are consequences of depression. Were his parents or siblings high achievers (in his eyes?)
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Old 10th March 2015, 11:27 AM   #3
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Re: What if my husband is a narcisist...Can he be cured???

one further point....Is your husband very much a routine person, and likes things to be 'just so' (especially around the home?)
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Old 10th March 2015, 02:09 PM   #4
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Re: What if my husband is a narcisist...Can he be cured???

Quote:
Originally Posted by sambrooklands View Post
one further point....Is your husband very much a routine person, and likes things to be 'just so' (especially around the home?)
Thank you once again for your response.
I think he feels undervalued at work and at home. He goes beyond the call of duty at work and is then v angry and frustrated when he isn't acknowledged as much as he thinks he should be.
At home he doesn't particularly want things 'just so', he seems to want his own space a lot. He is very involved with putting the bedtime routine and will help with homework, but other than that seems to want to play his playstation and be allowed time on his own.
We've had not contact since our counselling session last night. I sent him an email asking if he wanted to talk and how he wants to move forward, but have had nothing in return and he's going away tomorrow.
I'm really nervous and dreading him coming home from work today. We can't carry on in this way and i can only imagine he's as unhappy as i am, but deosn't recognise that it is him, he thinks it's me or 'us' and so if someone won't take accountability it's hard to know where to go.
I have booked in to see the counsellor alone next week.
It feels really disloyal being on this site and talking about him, i know he'd be devastated and that's sort of making me nervous too. I'm sure i'm now sounding a bit mad myself!!!!!!
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Old 10th March 2015, 02:13 PM   #5
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Re: What if my husband is a narcisist...Can he be cured???

Quote:
Originally Posted by sambrooklands View Post
It is a feeling of obligation to achieve. This is linked to anxiety and depression. You both sound exhausted, and remember things always appear worse at night. Stick to your plan and keep doing the right things. All of his symptoms to me at least are consequences of depression. Were his parents or siblings high achievers (in his eyes?)
No, he's the high achiever in his family. I think his father was a successful businessman, but as my husband is an intellectual as well as high achiever it is definitely not that he compares himself to anyone in his family. He has one brother who he wants nothing to do with, who isn't particularly successful.

Last edited by defeated; 10th March 2015 at 02:26 PM.
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Old 10th March 2015, 03:44 PM   #6
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Re: What if my husband is a narcisist...Can he be cured???

Have you looked into the possibility that he has traits of Aspergers/High functioning Autism?
I myself have (in a mild way) and what that often results is someone being successful when they are in 'role' (ie at work) however once they are out of work, they crash as they have been so exhausted in being in 'role'

Just some food for thought, as High functioning ASD folk very often suffer with depression and tiredness. Have a quick look into this yourself and also broach it with your councillor.
You are not cheating by being on here. You are being too hard on yourself again. ��
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Old 10th March 2015, 10:29 PM   #7
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Re: What if my husband is a narcisist...Can he be cured???

So, we had a talk, which didn't go well.
He thinks we're not getting on because of a combination of us & how I choose to see the negative in him & not accept him for who he is. I said he is all about him & I need to feel like his priority, not to slot in to whatever he wants.
I said he's depressed & should get help. He said it's both of us. I said it's over & he said ok & left the room.
Obviously this a hugely abridged version. I think I'm in shock.
Feel knocked over by a breeze block....don't know if I'm playing hardball & it is in fact me too, or don't know if it's for the best & I would be in the same position for years to come. Oh my god!!!!!!
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Old 10th March 2015, 10:39 PM   #8
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Re: What if my husband is a narcisist...Can he be cured???

I'm sorry you're going through this. Perhaps you can go back to counseling together? if he won't go, you should continue to go alone. I would just advise to be sure before you make a move. That's why more counseling might be needed. You should have no doubts about ending anything if that's what you decide to do. It's hard to go back if things go too far.
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Old 11th March 2015, 01:35 PM   #9
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Re: What if my husband is a narcisist...Can he be cured???

Ok - I am replying regarding this thread and your other thread 'Virgin user' as they are clearly interlinked. As an outsider, there is a massive positive here that is apparent to me and it is where you state "I said he is depressed and should get help. He says it is both of us"

.....Does this mean he will seek help for depression if you will. ??- if so I would say that is a great step forward. When you are ready I am more than happy to hear the unabridged version if getting it off your chest helps however do not look too deeply into him just saying 'OK' when you said it was over ..quite a normal reaction for most blokes i would say. What you are doing here is starting the process of making your relationship more balanced and as this is out of your comfort zone it will be scary at times, but remember it is normal. Do you try and maintain the 'Perfect happy family' image that we all see in the media? Well I can assure you that is not the case, and something like one in three of the Yummy Mummies, or Super Dads that you see living an idylic family life out cycling or in a Yoghurt drink advert will be going through the same or worse than you. The difference however is that you are facing up to things, starting to bedealing with it, and getting it out in the open (well on here at least) That is a crucial step to moving forward in being honest with yourself.

Last edited by sambrooklands; 11th March 2015 at 01:45 PM.
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Old 11th March 2015, 04:07 PM   #10
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Re: What if my husband is a narcisist...Can he be cured???

No, my husband won't admit or even entertain the idea that he has any form of depression or anger issues at all, or that his past, or grieving could be having any impact on him. He is saying that the problem is between 'us' and I need to face up to the fact that it's my perception of his behavioiur that is causing the problems.
He says that when I've voiced upset over things that he's done, it is because i view him in such a negative way and THAT is the problem. I genuinely in my heart don't feel this is true.
When he chooses to befriend a predatory woman (who i mentioned in my first post, who nearly lost him his job) and decided to continue the friendship even though I was upset about it, I see this as a selfish act and him thinking of himself or her and putting them before me and I want to be his priority as he is mine.
When he talks about going on a fishing trip to Mexico for the second time in a few months, on his own with a friend and leaving his wife and small children, I take this as upsetting, whereas he sees it as me choosing to look negatively on him simply doing something he enjoys.
He is very hostile and angry and I have just tried to talk to him again, but he is just saying that i'm the one who wants to end it and so i can think about how we part and saying things like 'so, are you going to put the market while i'm away'.
He won't face the fact he has issues and is just saying it's a problem with 'us' and not him and he won't seek help or even entertain the idea it's predominantly his issues that are causing such a huge distance between us.
I am stunned and feel shattered by what's happening. But know it can't carry on as it has, but was so hopeful that this would make him sit up and get help for some deep rooted issues which I know he has.
I feel completely wretched and I'm doubting myself.
I have spoken to my sisters who both think I have done/am doing all i can to keep our family together, although ofcourse they are going to be biassed.
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Old 11th March 2015, 04:54 PM   #11
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Re: What if my husband is a narcisist...Can he be cured???

Great that you are talking to your sisters....biased or not they are there for you (as my brother and sister were when i was struggling) and that is what matters at the moment.

Deep breath now.....

It is not as bad as you will be seeing things at the moment. You have made your point, now leave the whole 'separating' subject be for now - i am sure he will reflect on this in good time. This is a bit leftfield, however have you thought about saying that he can go on the trip away with your blessing as the break will do him good. He may well have an underlying guilt about leaving you all and does not know how to express it. A bit of distance can be a great way to diffuse an intense situation. Before he goes away why cannot you both sit down and compile a list of to dos during this period. You can ask him what specifically you say/do that upsets him - (get exact examples here) and then give these consideration while he is away. However this has to work both ways so see if he will buy into the idea of doing the same for you. Try to have a nice evening before he goes away if at all possible. Can someone have the kids overnight? How is the physical side of things - is there a likelyhood of either of you wanting a romantic scene etc etc in the bedroom? Do not dismiss the value of your sisters support - I hope they live near by?
Keep going, things will pass.

Last edited by sambrooklands; 11th March 2015 at 06:15 PM.
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Old 11th March 2015, 07:18 PM   #12
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Re: What if my husband is a narcisist...Can he be cured???

Hi

Ok, so, i might be coming across as possessive and as though I am trying to keep my husband on a tight leash, but really this is not the case.

The problem is more the general anger and hostility and feeling as though i never know what i'm going to say that will blow his fuse. We don't have any physical contact and haven't since around Christmas time.

When my husband was made redundant a few months ago and given a fat payout and had time off, i encouraged him to do something that he would love to do and suggested he go off on a 'trip of a lifetime'... he came up with fishing in Mexico for 10 days. I hadn't expected something quite so extreme, as i know i wouldn't out of choice be away for him and the children for that amount of time... but i was still behind him going and encouraging him that it would be good.
As we hadn't been getting on for a long time and I had been hoping that it had been a lot to do with his work, i thought that some time off to breathe, relax, have a change of scene and let go of every day life, might recharge his batteries and he would come back refreshed and happy and we would then get on.

Unfortunately, as i mentioned, we were burgled two nights before he left, while we were all asleep upstairs.

I didn't want him to cancel his trip, but i was completely rattled and had hoped that he might at least have a flicker of thinking that it might be more important to know his family were safe, rather than just waving and skipping off to go on his trip.

Like you suggested, I had hoped that he might go off and reflect on stuff and value the fact I'm so supportive of him suggesting the trip, and also the fact I've supported him so much - moving to America, dealing with things like the woman that had caused us so many problems.

Anyway, he went off to Mexico and rather than checking in to see how i was and how we were all doing, he was posting things like 'had the best day of my life and finally caught a Marlin' on FB. When i spoke to him, usually in tears as i was a complete wreck as the burglars had returned a couple of days later, and had the police at our house non stop and at the same time was pretending everything was fine to the children and not sleeping, he didn't want to know, but told me about how he'd been so happy and actually cried about catching his dream fish.
(I'm sure i sound very bitter, but I am resentful... not because he had a wonderful time, but if there had seemed like a glimmer of care about what i was going through I wouldn't have minded).
There have been a number of instances that I've felt really hurt and let down and he just can't see it...

The instance with the woman from work was 5 years ago when when were liiving in America. He was so desperate to defend her when i was saying i was uncomfortable about the fact she was bringing in photos of herself when she was a swimwear model and talking to him about her marital problems and crying on him at work (he was her boss). Things became extremely difficult when on Father's Day, she invited us all over for the day to her house. I was in a foreign country with a little baby and pregnant, and said no, i didn't want to go to her house and watch him go off fishing with her on his lake... he said it was 'his' day and father's day should be about doing what 'he' wanted and he wanted to go fishing with her. I was extremely upset and said that father's day was about being a father and spending it with your family and being spoilt by them..... he went off for the day fishing with her alone. I did let it go, but my resentment about it has resurfaced as I remeber it being another example of feeling unloved and unimportant, as I generally feel now.

Another instance is when I was having my twins. I had organised for a few of the male friends we knew to go out for a boys night to 'wet the baby's head' for him. (Looking back, i can't imagine what i was thinking - as if i didn't have enough on my plate, having two tiny children and about to give birth to twins), but i just always want him to be happy.
Anyway... the twins happened to arrive on the day that i'd organised the drinks for him. I asked him if he'd contact the guys to rearrange the drinks, but he refused, saying i'd organised it and so he had to stick to it... and so when he brought me back from the hospital with our new twins he promptly went out drinking - the same night i returned home with new twins. I still can't believe it looking back. Again, something I just tried to let go of, but it's resurfaced as I'm feeling as though generally I should be getting better treatment than I have and am.

Anyway, to come back to more recent times. When he returned from his Mexico trip in October just gone, things were still terrible and he seemed just so angry towards me and still sleeping all the time and uncommunicative and wanting to play his playstation the whole time.
I kept on suggesting we go for coffees together and do some nice things, or that he come for a swim with me at my gym and he refused every time.
In the five months he was off we went for one coffee together.

I think went away for a week with my sister, hoping again, that absence might make the heart grow fonder and though i would lose my mind if i didn't have some time out. I thought he also might see what a lonely existance I have being in a place with no old friends or family close by and looking after four demanding lttle ones, aged, 3 (twins), 6 and 7. When I skyped home when i was away he was still hostile and when i returned, arriving at about 8pm he'd locked the front door and took ages to open it, saying he was asleep... not the big reunion and welcome home I'd hoped for (he said it was because of being worried about burglars, but i'd called him from the airport to say what time i'd be there).

Another recent instance was for my brother's 40th in January of this year... my sister asked if we wanted to stay at hers, which was close by, but i refused and booked us a lovely hotel close to the venue, thinking again, we were having a rubbish time, but a nice hotel with no children would be a nice little romantic break for us. We had an argument over my sister and the fact she and her husband are having a tricky time and so were having a trial seperation and so she was bringing a friend (male) as her plus one. He went mad, saying how wrong it was and i was saying, it's not our business, and to just relax about it and if my brother doesn't mind and it's just a friend, then there's no problem and it's out of our control... anyway, he was really frosty and cross about it and ended up arguing about it. I decided i didn't want to let it ruin our night and so we went for a wander arond the town (where he was saying how the town wasn't very nice) and then we came back to the hotel room (about 2.30pm). He then promptly fell asleep until it was time to get ready. Ofcourse i was so disappointed as I'd hoped we'd have time together and possibly have some affection.
When we went to the party, he was sitting further away from me, and i was having fun catching up with my family... and half way through the night we went outside and he berated me for 'humiliating' him. I was so shocked. I knew it was tense between us, and know that i made a quip at his expense about us being 'loves young dream' as i'd been lying next to him snoring all afternoon, but apart from that had said absolutely nothing. My brother and sisters and brother and sister in law all apparently said they were so sad for me as they didn't think i'd done anything wrong at all and i hadn't humiliated him in any way. Needless to say he had no interest in sex and in fact just carried on about me humiliating him when we got back to the hotel room and how he didn't want to sleep with me and we drove back home in the morning in silence.

We have the odd times when we laugh together and get on brilliantly and he seems really lovely. He was absolutely lovely on Christmas day and I thought that maybe it was the beginning of something brilliant, but the next day there was this tension again, which I don't understand.
It really feels as though he doesn't want to be with me, as if i'm an irritant, but i also think he loves me deep down. I keep on trying to explain to him that i just want to be his friend and i'm on his side but i need to feel like he wants to be my friend too and just need some kindness from him.

It's so horrible and bizarre.. and such a headf*ck of a situation, which is why i got to the point of writing on here and hoping for some sort of insight from others.
The main arguments seemed to stem originally for me saying i didn't feel that he loved me and it would just make him really angry, to the point of it getting out of control and him removing himself to sleep in the spare room for weeks. We'd then somehow seemed to go through a nice phase, but it would happen again, when i said i just didn't feel like he even liked me, letalone loved me.
I don't understand what's going on or what he wants.

He never really tells me what he wants, apart from when i bring it up and ask if he's depressed or grieving and could that be the reason he seems so stressed and angry so much of the time.

Anyway, this is so long and probably doesn't make sense, as i've been writing it whilst screaming at the children to eat their supper (oh my glamourous life).

He's now gone off to South Africa for a week and must say, just him being out of the house feels so much better than the tension of him working from home today and us creeping around trying to avoid one another.

Thanks for taking the time to read it. I am really open to people's opinions. If you think i'm over-reacting and actually being too sensitive then I'll take it on the chin.

I know i'm not perfect, i know i'm sensitive and I have no doubt that we react to one another and I have things to work on, but it feels unfair to me and as though this general anger and distance and stress and hostility that I face is not of my doing. But who knows. A man may have a different opinion and understand why he may think i'm whiney when I try to give examples of why I feel unloved.

I, as everyone does, thinks that they are in the right, but i do honestly like to think i'm open to advice and critisism and accepting of others opinions.

I don't want to paint him as a bad, evil man, as he's far from it. I would never have married him if he didn't have more qualites of who i wanted to spend the rest of my life with, than any other person i'd ever met. He is incredible, hilarious and strong and principled and handsome and apart from lacking in empathy and missing an emotional chink everything i could have wanted.

Unfortunately I suspect that his demons from his past have taken over the good and consumed him and I can't help him if he won't help himself.

Any advice or opinions are extremely gratefuly received.
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Old 11th March 2015, 08:45 PM   #13
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Re: What if my husband is a narcisist...Can he be cured???

I think you have a right to be upset at some of the things he's done. I'm really sorry you're going through this. I can only think that counseling can help you sort your feelings out and paint a clearer picture. Hopefully he can go with you, but if not, you might want to go alone. He might not want to help himself, but you can take care of you. You deserve to take care of yourself right now. Not to mention you have four little ones to care for.
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Old 11th March 2015, 10:26 PM   #14
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Re: What if my husband is a narcisist...Can he be cured???

I agree fully with Lindentree - go to counciling on your own if need be.
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Old 11th March 2015, 10:46 PM   #15
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Re: What if my husband is a narcisist...Can he be cured???

Thank you for helping me see that I'm not being mad! It's easy to lose perspective!!
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