When I was with Luc, he always used to refer to the woman he dated before me as “crazy and deranged”. He would force his son to call her by that name despite the fact that it was clear the child didn’t harbor the same ill will against her. Though Luc claimed that they had broken up a whole year before we had met, he frequently spoke about how terrible the relationship was due to the physical and emotional abuse she put him through. Of course, from what I now know of Luc, it was Luc who was physically and emotionally abusive. Instead of the ex-girlfriend, it was Luc who was “crazy and deranged”.
Every so often, you run into someone who has been in an abusive relationship. When you meet someone who claims this, whether male or female, you should be weary. I say this knowing that someone will meet me in the future wondering about my story too. They should be weary too because many times the abusive person claims that everyone else around them is crazy. Their relationships have failed because they keep running into “crazy and deranged” women, etc. These people always seem to have an excuse as to why there is constant chaos in their lives. Luc would always say, “I must have been a bad person in another life to deserve all this back luck.” Newsflash psychopath: You are a bad person in this life – that is why all these bad things are happening. I digress.
Before meeting Luc, I really didn’t know how to spot a crazy and deranged person. By “crazy and deranged”, I don’t mean what we would typically think as someone who is insane. This person isn’t always as obvious as a grown man walking around talking to his imaginary friend. Sometimes, it takes a while for the person to show their true crazy. That said, there are always clues and when you see those clues you should question them – listen to your internal warning system – and run.
For those of you who are not familiar with the term gaslighting, it is a form of mental abuse where false information is presented with the intent of making the victim doubt his or her own memory, perception and sanity. This may range from denial by the abuser that previous abusive incidents ever occurred, up to the staging of bizarre events by the abuser with the intention of disorienting the victim. For people who have been through this form of abuse, it can be terrifying, upsetting, and extremely confusing. When I was going through it, I was dealing with pregnancy hormones at the same time. Luc’s gaslighting episodes would have me questioning my own sanity and wondering why I had perceived certain events as abusive when Luc swore that the events never occurred.
If you have heard a variation on the following, you are probably dealing with someone who is gaslighting:
1) ”I wish I had a tape recorder because I would play back that conversation. I never said ____. You are making that up.”
2) ”That never happened, you must be imagining that.”
Every single person who came into Luc’s life likely experienced some form of this type of abuse. Before Luc’s mother was found laying dead on a plastic bag (police ruled this a suicide and claimed that she must have suffocated herself), Luc had her believing she had alzheimer’s disease. While I never met the woman, I suspect that she didn’t have alzheimer disease. I suspect that Luc was staging bizarre events to make this poor woman believe she was loosing her memory.
In December 2010, Luc beat his older son. After the abuse, the boy went into school and told his teachers who then reported the abuse to police. The child had physical evidence on his back in the form of Luc’s ring marks. While Luc awaited trial for the domestic assault of his son, CPS believed it was best to put the child back in the home. Luc spent the next three months before trial convincing this child that he had imagined the entire event. At one point, his son asked him, “don’t you remember punching me in the chest?” Luc responded by saying, “that never happened! You must have imagined that!” The boy’s face dropped and he looked both terrified and confused. He then dropped his head and quietly uttered, “maybe I did imagine it.”
A few days after giving birth to Prince, I was hungry and went downstairs to get some food. Luc had left us in a room upstairs, and disappeared for days. I knew I wasn’t supposed to be going up and down the stairs, but I also knew I couldn’t starve myself. As soon as Prince fell asleep, I put him in his crib and went to the kitchen. As I was returning upstairs, I saw Luc glaring at me from the top of the stairs. ”What are you doing,” he asked in an angry tone. ”I was hungry. I am having trouble with my milk coming in….I have to eat or else Prince won’t get enough milk.” As I stood there explaining, I was tearing up at the fact that I even needed to explain why I was getting food. ”You shouldn’t be eating all that food. You need to lose weight,” he said. I immediately broke down crying. I was sore, tired, and hungry. Here I was with a bagel and some greek yogurt, and my son’s father was making it seem like I was eating chocolate cake and bon bons. As I cried, Luc started yelling more. ”What is wrong with you,” he yelled. ”I am just trying to help you! You are overreacting. It must be your hormones.”
There is no rehab for a psychopath:
People often wonder if abusive people can ever change. I am not in the camp of people who believe that they can change. If someone is exhibiting the above mentioned behavior, chances are that this person is far past the point of rehabilitation. If you stay with a person like this, you will be driven crazy by the constant mental abuse and life chaos.
One of the most dangerous things about these people, perhaps, is their ability to remain calm as they fabricate bizarre scenarios to make those around them look criminal. For example, George Zimmerman has been in the public eye for the last few years. He first entered our radar when he shot a teenage boy in cold blood. Of course, he created a whole story about how this teenage boy (who was only armed with skittles and iced tea) attacked him. Since the teenage boy was dead, Zimmerman’s story was the one that stood up in court. In the past few months, two different women have accused Zimmerman of domestic assault. According to Zimmerman, both of these women are crazy; however, in these two cases Zimmerman is the only common denominator.
The most recent 911 tapes released in the Zimmerman domestic assault charge brought me back to a bad place. Listening to this man who had just pulled a gun on his girlfriend calmly explain to the police that she had been the aggressor made me sick to my stomach. For years, Luc got away with so many violent crimes against women and children. When accused, he created fantastic stories while remaining calm. His victims, however, are never calm because they have had to endure the trauma of the abusive incident.
My greatest regret in life allowed me to experience one of the greatest joys in my life. I biggest regret in life is my relationship with Luc, but everyone who has read my story knows that without that relationship I would not have had the opportunity to meet my angel (Prince). I am forever thankful and grateful for having known that child. That said, if there is any wisdom that I can impart on other women – if you see any of the above behavior from your partner, do not have a child with this person. If you have a child with this person, leave now and prepare yourself for the fight of your life. Sometimes I wonder if Prince would have survived if I had stayed with Luc. About two seconds after I start thinking that, I remember that Luc is now an “alleged” serial killer. Not only would Prince likely have still not survived, but I likely wouldn’t have either.