64 Responses to “What Does Crazy Sound Like? Psycho Ex-Girlfriend Stalks and Harasses Her Ex-Boyfriend Via Telephone”


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  1. Lovekraft

    there are thousands, if not millions, of such people in our society, damaged and hurt. But our society has always been harsh and cold and thinking that life should be about puppies and rainbows sets these people up for a major cognitive disconnect.

    Yet the men like myself who know this are labelled ‘too logical’ or cold. But who is able to best withstand the downtimes, the long road to happiness?

    What I have found is that the problem isn’t as much getting INTO a relationship, but in how to ensure I am able to get a clean break should it be required. About to start up a new relationship and the mental jockeying that is going to happen is a necessary component of ensuring a sound mental state.

    • Dr Tara J. Palmatier

      Society used to believe that the world was flat and that bathing would make you sick.

      Beliefs can change and they change by never ceasing to assert the truth.

      Good luck with the new relationship. If she begins leaving voicemails like those above. . . well, you know.

  2. Irishgirl

    Love, love, love this article. I think finding that website inspired you!

  3. Lovekraft

    That one photo of the zombie-eyes really freaked me out. But it does help reinforce your message.

    Any comment on how the crazy wants to bring the other down to her level? How eventually, if the man is not resolute enough, or is too weak, he will start to copy her behaviors? Or do you think that by being firm and consistent, the crazy could emulate his ‘logical’ way?

  4. Richard G.

    For what it is worth and all other disagreements aside, this site is very informative, and it helps young men such as myself to avoid disastrous relationships and not be filled with fear, shame or guilt by virtue of my gender. I don’t have much to say about this topic, because in all reality, I am the type that is too insecure and afraid to commit to a girl, and relationships aren’t really my strong point. But I have seen dysfunctional relationships, and that is more than enough proof that I need to avoid relationships.

  5. weeeblo

    I had not previously heard of this content – thanks for sharing it Dr. T. It’s one more thing that reassures, while scaring the crap out of, me that my experience(s) have not been unique. In fact, the more I hear, the more disturbed I am by how little these types of behaviors are acknowledged as sick and unhealthy, much less challenged.

  6. never again

    I was silly enough not to go no contact for the first four months after I left her, and I got hit with the deadly illness crap, too. The first was some obscure opthalmic condition which was also apparently related to urinary tract issues, which was her explanation for why she wouldn’t have sex with me for 3.5 years. The second was possible mouth cancer, which explained why she refused to let me kiss her on the mouth for 2 years before I left her. I simply said “I’m sorry this is happening to you, but I’m not owning it.”

    Oddly enough, neither condition got in the way of her competitive horseback riding, or her getting into another relationship four months after I left her…

  7. Zaxus

    Wow, that sounded a lot like daily conversations at my house until I GOT OUT.

    Question, because right now I am really wondering about my SELF, Dr. Tara, do you think it is true that we choose a mate that matches our own mental health??? This concerns me for obvious reasons! I see it more as I got duped, or duped myself. I was not taught good boundaries and also simply did not know that there were such controllers out there! That I might get into relationship with. So I see myself as naive and I have operated out of a spirit of cooperation in life and now I have to WATCH OUT for the crazies.

    But I wonder sometimes am I equally as crazy?

    • strong_bad

      Just calm down, dude. I dated a borderline girl for a while and yes, you might have some issues, but it isn’t the end of the world. Just take a look at this great website, it will guide you through possible problems that you and your partner mighth have:


      • Dr Tara J. Palmatier

        Schreiber’s site is very helpful, which is why it’s on my blogroll.

        Everyone has issues. However, the fact that you have issues, whatever they may be, does not give your exgf the right to abuse you. Period.

        You did NOT cause your exgf’s abusive behavior. Your issues did NOT cause your exgf’s abusive behavior. I don’t know enough about you and your issues, but a good starting point re: your issues would be to figure out what it is within you that attracted you to someone like your exgf and what attracted her to you. Then, work on those issues until you believe and demand better treatment from others in your relationships.

        Kind Regards,
        Dr T

  8. NoSeRider

    Psycho Ex #31 is on youtube. I have no idea why you can’t listen to the complete set? I’m wondering why ‘they’ need to embark upon a full on guilt trip? They always seem to emphasize what a victim they are.

    • NoSeRider

      Has anybody heard of Stephanie Woods the infamous “cookie monster”?

      Oh, but wait…it doesn’t end:

      Oh my god, it gets worse:

      You can chronologically watch a teenage girl in 2008 turn into sociopath, which is one of the cluster b personality disorders. In weird, how they’ll fain remorse, but it’s all about them. Could care less about the other person.

      • NoSeRider

        I met it’s weird, but this prompts the ‘how society is hypocritical towards men/women when it comes to crime’ rant.

        She gets probation for ‘armed’ accessory robbery…with a gun. I know the judge would have thrown away the key for me, because I’m not a cute little girl: sugar and spice and everything nice.

    • Verbal

      I suspect #31 was removed because she uses the name of his new girlfriend, and he just wanted to protect her.

  9. B Experienced

    None of her whining and sobbing bothers me at ALL. I find it sickening, pathetic and very annoying. I wonder why he didn’t go to the police after the 3rd phone call. I would have. I don’t care what kind of Gucci Brand Therapy these Cluster B’s go though because I would never trust one. They are good in therapy as long as they are not held TOO accountable, are felt sorry for and can get off the hook with their HIGHLY manipulative behavior. The scale of the outcome depends on how high their narcissism/psychopathy is. Some therapists make excuses for their manipulations by rationalizing it and saying that it is the only way they know how to get their unmet needs from childhood met and isn’t manipulation therefore at all. Just a cheap hat trick. Don’t buy it. It is called Denial on the clinician’s party and is just like the reality spin that the Cluster B does. Perhaps they picked up the B’s tricks. When the therapy is over this group is notorious for decompensating and/or regressing. They may reduce or modify some behaviors but the hard ugly truth is that it isn’t as good an outcome as some clinicians would have you believe. Many clinician’s have a hard time believing that not everyone can be helped or really wants it. Run, Run, Run!

  10. TheGirlInside

    I could only make it through about 1/4 of these, cause it was so annoyinly repetitive. You could make a cyclical “steps of trying to ensnare your ex (for abusive women”…once you get to Step 5, cycle back to Step 1…

    Ugh. I kept saying to myself, “Oh my gosh! She’s crazy! She’s nuts!” If you clock the time spent on most of the ‘cluster’ (*snicker*) calls, she must have certainly hung up then immediately called back. Literally.

    A good friends’ NPD/BPD (both??) AW does the same shit…calls, doesn’t leave a vm, hangs up, hits redial, and keeps going until he finally picks up…over and over and over again. I witnessed it one time, and couldn’t help saying, “That’s not, mentally healthy!”

    Thanks, Dr. T for helping to point out that such behavior is NOT NORMAL.
    Reminds me of that creepy-a** song, “Please don’t leave me” As much as I like Pink’s music, that song just creeps me out. I can’t tell if she’s commenting on crazy woman or actually thinks those things herself.

    • SineNomine

      Thanks, Dr. T for helping to point out that such behavior is NOT NORMAL.

      Thank you, TGI, for highlighting that. Seriously. What worries me is that there are people out there (including some therapists and other mental health professionals – God help us) that would give this a pass because she’s expressing her feeeeeeeeeeeeelings. Of course, all expressions of feeeeeeeeeeeeelings (by women, anyway) are healthy and valid and should be encouraged, blah blah blah. Of course, if a man behaved this way he’d get a restraining order slapped on him faster than you could say “stalking.”

    • dietrich

      That song by Pink is the quintessential Borderline Ballad. The song is actually tolerable, its the video that creeps me out. Classic BPD stuff…

      Pink, a horderline? Shrug…maybe more on the histrionic side….

  11. James

    This chick is right out of Fatal Attraction, less the boiling bunny.

    It is so gross to see an adult that is essentially a small, mean child. You may feel sorry for them but don’t.

    As nutty as they are, they know right from wrong and choose to lie, cheat, steal and manipulate to get their needs met. In the law you are held responsible even if you live in a fantasy world so long as you know right from wrong. Because even if you believe you are the Queen it is still wrong if you kill someone.

    These people are just bad, period. They have no morals,
    Just pure self interest. No love. Just living like greedy swine. That is their Hell, and they deserve it.

    What created this type of monster? Who knows. It is as unanswerable as asking why evil exists. It is useless to eveven think about it unless you are a professional psychologist and/or philosopher.

    You have to get away from them or they will damage you. Dealing with them is a no-win situation that could drive even the healthiest person insane. Like a spider they will feed off you.

    • ginger

      James, as to what created this type of monster..I can speak to that. At least in my mother’s case it boiled down to the fact that she was raised without any boundaries growing up. Her parents doted on her, thought she could do no wrong–they spoiled her. My mother brags to this day that she never needed to be disciplined. That is exactly why she throws tantrums like a toddler in the terrible twos today. I’ts the reason why she expects to be coddled, always the center of attention, and reacts with fury against any attempts to apply a boundary or consequence to her behavior. She was literally raised to believe she’s incapable of wrongdoing. Raised to remain entitled to a a toddlers behaviors and expectations. Spoiling a child without ever making them face consequences or boundaries or discipline results in a grown adult who is the same: spoiled, tantrum throwing, with no respect for boundaries, feels they shouldn’t have to face consequences. A selfish, self-centered, abusive adult that needs to have his/her way at all costs with zero empathy or care about how they hurt others to achieve this. Spoiled children who’ve never had to face boundaries (consequences) become the abusers of tommmorow.

      • ginger

        Funny, I’ve always thought of my mother as that Fatal Attraction woman from the movie. She exhibits the same dramatic hysteria. And she is vengeful, jealous, and manipulative like that when there is a possability she may not get her way. It’s disgusting.

  12. James

    The other thing that I would pass on to guys as a man with 20+ years of ex

    perience. I felt sorry for this girl upfront. Like she had no confidence and would get better if I loved her. Wrong. She got much worse over time. She hated me for no reason. Unbelieveable. Turned me into the Boogyman to justify her misdeeds.

    She comes on to you as needy and gives you everything so easy and then you owe her and she needs you and you are hooked. Guilt trip, whatever it takes.

    But there is always something wrong with you, something you did wrong to offend her. Something normal people would say is blown out of proportion. Don’t blow it off. It never gets better.

    Find someone who worships you as much as them or find nobody. It is not worth being a host to.an evil parasite on this Earth. My ex left me and thusly I know there is a God. I would be run.into the ground dead if this did not happen. Sadly, all the good guys are already hurt of they are on this site. I hope I can help one single person to avoid the crap I have been through.

    • ginger

      I back up James on this. They do not change or get better with time. They will blacken your reputation to justify their misdeeds and pin them on you. It also serves to isolate you and discredit you so no one will believe you should you ever speak out about her atrocious behaviors. I speak with almost 30 years of experience as a child of this type of disordered woman. If you stay with them, you indeed can only be a host to an evil parasite, as James so aptly put it. Disabuse yourself of the pollyanna hope that they will get better, see your side of things, or feel remorse. It just doesn’t happen with these personality types.

      • ginger

        You can’t have a real relationship with them. It’s a one way flow (their way all the time, their needs all the time, you’ll be giving and giving until it wears down your soul). It is a parasitic relationship, they do not love you, you are a host to them. They feed off your life, your emotions, your time, your energy, your attention. It’s take, take, take. This is not a reciprocal relationhip. The forumula never deviates. It remains a host/parasite relationship until you actually leave. I’m sorry, but they do not change. They only use therapy to manipulate and its back to the same old abusive cyle.

  13. James

    Your Achilles heal is trying to help your mother. If she was weak or needy you try to fix that with someone else. Your motives though unconscious are pure, yet are stupid and immature nonetheless.

    This is how you fall victim to this evil witch whose sole objective is to bring you down. Prove you are all bad – worse than her and you deserve what you get. Sounds just like the stories of the Devil, right?
    That is how people would explain this three hundred years ago.

    Never feel sorry for them. They truly are all bad themselves out of choice. Your weak spot is your big heart – your kind soul. They want to take that away as if it were a pair of ruby slippers that would make them more powerful.

    Don’t waste your time on something that can’t be fixed by you. Even Jesus wrote off the truly wicked.

    • TheGirlInside


      I don’t know who you were addressing, but I have written of my NPD mother on this site, so I can relate to your post.

      You said: “They truly are all bad themselves out of choice. Your weak spot is your big heart – your kind soul. They want to take that away as if it were a pair of ruby slippers that would make them more powerful.”

      I add: Someone who is truly worthy of our good love will not find a big heart or compassion as a weak spot with which to manipulate and use against us; he or she will cherish it, value it and nourish it.

      They are all take-take-take. Even if it seems like they are ‘giving’ something to you, there are ALWAYS strings attached…always. Sort of like just because they spent $5 or $500 on you (using your own paycheck / credit card / gift card…no skin off their nose), that automatically obligates you to put up with their continuing abuse, or else they have the right to whine and cry that you don’t appreciate what they do for you. MALARKY.

      “They truly are all bad themselves out of choice.” – I had a lightbulb moment recently – the fact that abusers will isolate their targets is a sign that they know that what they are doing is wrong (even if only on a subconscious level?). If they didn’t, there would be no reason to hide you away from the rest of the world, to protect you from your own family / friends / from making new friends without your Abuser’s prior written consent….were I a judge, that would be my litmus test.

      Appreciate your lessons learned~

  14. James

    One last comment (now I am feeling like a stalker). Even though this chick hates her daddy (and thusly wants to fix it with him through you), she became who she is because of her mommy. Her mother made her in her own image to suffer the same fate. Without Divine intervention she will end up a mean, dried up, sickly hag living all alone after destroying everyone around her.

    There, I am done.

    But I have to go say a prayer for my daughter. Sadly, that is all I will ever be able to do. I can’t save anybody but myself. All I can do is be the best person I can be. Sometimes life is beyond your control and you have to make like the Stoic philosopher and go with the flow.

    • knotheadusc

      James, you said “Even though this chick hates her daddy (and thusly wants to fix it with him through you), she became who she is because of her mommy. Her mother made her in her own image to suffer the same fate.”

      My husband’s daughters are in the same boat. I have only met them in person once, but I don’t like them because they are turning out to be just like their mother, who even though she was adopted, acts just her mother did. I fear that one day, those girls, who are completely alienated from their dad, will decide to come out of the woodwork and exploit him or some poor guy and the cycle will repeat. You are so right when you say you can’t save anyone but yourself… That is especially true, the older people get. My husband’s girls are young adults who base all of their decisions on emotions. If they don’t learn to use their heads, they are doomed to a lifetime of chaos, which will inevitably end up affecting innocent people.

      I think if I were you, I’d say a prayer for anyone who has a relationship with your daughter… and the children that might be affected years from now.

    • never again

      I get the “hates her daddy” part. My NPD was born into a “good family”, but has no relationship with her father. She complained that her parent’s marriage was so rotten, her father extremely detached from the whole family, yet they’ve been married 50 years and are very well off financially. He basically just paid exhorbitant amounts of money throughout her childhood to keep Mom and the daughters busy, so he didn’t have to interact with them. That’s part of the problem, I think. The money was enough of an incentive to put up with the emotional disconnect, and her mother instilled that in the NPD.

      Relationship-wise, I was the polar opposite of her father, completely immersed in the family. That wasn’t good enough, apparently.

      When I left her, her mother arrived a week later for what had been a scheduled month-long visit, so she and the NPD had plenty of together time to dissect my awful ways. MIL was there when I went to pick up my things. She actually had the nerve to say to me “Do you have any idea of the wealth you’re walking away from?”

      I said “This isn’t about money. It’s about intimacy. It’s about being able to kiss my wife on the mouth.” Her response was basically that intimacy wasn’t necessary in a marriage…

  15. anon.father

    it is a testament to your professionalism and dedication to your calling that you listened to those messages.

  16. dietrich

    I have 2 old voice mails I keep on my phone, just to remind me of Crazy and how pathetic she was/is. I could probably upload them to that guy’s site. Ugh…I feel sick to stomach just thinking about it.

    The more ‘no contact’ time I have, the better. Thanks again, Dr T. :)

  17. Verbal

    “You treat me like shit.” A phrase ripped straight from my Cluster B wife’s playbook. I swear these people all emerged from the same pod.

  18. Marshall Stack

    Wow! There’s a whole lotta crazy going on there! I don’t think it has to get to that extreme to be harassing, however. I’m guaranted to get phone calls at work anytime my kids act up, the van makes a funny noise, the bus is late bringing our daughter home from school, etc. She’ll take up all kinds of my work time to go off about how she ahtes her life, and gets angry at me if I have nothing to say to her or if I have to go to actually get work done. God forbid I’m not at my desk when she calls, because then I have to account for where I was and what I was doing.

    • Ron On Drums

      Sorry to hear of that Marshal. But on a side note. I take it you are a Guitar player in a band. As you can guess I am a drummer in a band as well. I have often wondered if these types are especially attracted to Musicians. A LOT of my Musician friends have dated these types. I remember one showing up at a show that my band was at as well & assaulted his his new girlfriend. My crazy Ex G/F tried the show up at one of our gigs as well. I had security remove her.

      • Marshall Stack

        I haven’t been in a band for about ten years. I’ve had the same thought as you, and there was a thread in the forum a while back about the attraction to creative/artistic types, and how those types can be vulnerable to control and manipulation.

        A year before I met my wife, I briefly dated a female vocalist who I realized was looking for a meal ticket and a “daddy” figure. There was a little post-breakup crazy that ended after a few weeks, but no stalking or f-ed up messages. I vaguely remember an argument I had with my wife before we got married involving her fear of me hooking up with some random woman at a gig; I ended up quitting the band, but more beause of the old “artistic differences” than anything else. No barroom drama fortunately.

        • dietrich

          Interesting…I’m also a musician (guitar, bass, piano) and have had similar thoughts. I haven’t been to the forum, but I’ve heard that men who are the sensitive/creative types are often prone to attracting (and being attracted to) females of the Cluster B flavor.

          MS, I had the same issues with my ex-BPD. She wouldn’t even go to my gigs, because she would get so jealous just from seeing other women looking at me. The fear about ‘hooking up’ with others was always there…she made it abundantly clear. No matter how hard I tried to prove my honesty and that I didn’t engage in that kind of behavior while in a relationship….well, it didn’t matter. ;)

          • Ron On Drums

            Yea the attention from other women drove the psycho ex nuts. I think one of the reasons is that they liked our onstage persona. Although I had a policy of not dating women I met at a show because they fall in love with “Rock Star Ron” & are disappointed to discover the “Real Ron” is just an average guy. But the g/f’s go to a show latter & get all worked up, UNTIL they see others get worked up….lol

            My beloved bride has never had a problem with the groupie types that come to our shows. She is a secure confident woman & has no jealousy issues. She knows that I have to be polite to them as they buy CD’s, tickets to the shows etc etc. She has seen them in action but knows I wont ever step over the line.

            She is now seriously ill & can’t attend any shows but has total confidence in me. I wont abuse that. But I tell ya, I have seen more REALLY GOOD musicians have to quit good bands because of jealous wives or G/F’s We lost a good singer because of it.

          • Dr Tara J. Palmatier

            Hi Ron,

            Can you email me at shrink4men@gmail.com?

            I tried emailing last week, but my email was returned as undeliverable.

            Dr T

          • Ron On Drums

            Hey Dr T. Yea my email address changed & I haven’t changed it on here. I cant remember my password to do that. I have my computer set to remember it. Anyway I will email ya with my correct addy.


          • anon.father

            i’m a professional musician with other skills too. hmm. basically, marriage has been a spinning vortex of dealing with my wife’s issues. she is also a musician, but does not have the backdrop of additional skills i have to weather artistic “dry spells.” prior to marriage, i accompanied her, we performed quite a bit and made some good money. we designed a healthy life plan. marriage mussed have pulled some kind of switch or something. it’s been 10 years and i feel like i don’t know what happened. where has this decade gone? i now have grey hair and didn’t complete my doctorate. i have filed for custody of our child.

            the thing that “gets” me sometimes is when psychotherapists or counselors speak from a “just universe” kind of perspective, like i actually “did” something to “attract” an abusive spouse. uhhh…really? what if i had married someone who didn’t pull a Jekyll and Hyde? my life would be just fine if my wife were the same person she was as a girlfriend thank you very much. i “attracted” a dynamic, sexy, friendly, talented girlfriend…who turned out to be a monster only after marriage, only in private, only at home, almost only towards me (except now also our child), and almost only when she won’t get caught.

            there is nothing “wrong” with being honest, kind, giving, talented, smart, musical, and sincere. ok fellas?

          • TheGirlInside

            My AXH (NPD) was the same. He seemed so nice, smart with money, had friends, good relationship with family, etc…until he got me ‘behind closed doors.’

            I’ll admit, I did feel the need to do some personal work on myself, and believe that my upbringing played a part in attracting him / putting on blinders while dating.

            The thing I had to realize is that there is a vast difference between being a nice person and being a doormat.

          • anon.father

            i really am in a scary situation.

          • anon.father

            not enough money to move out, yet.

            social services seems to be “rolling their eyes” at me when i talk about my wife’s abusive episodes and they talk about parenting styles and perspective. when i talk about truth and say “abuse is not a parenting style,” i think they feel like i’m pedantic and telling them how to do their jobs

            there’s also a kind of woman perpetrator x 1000, man slips even the slightest bit and that’s it, it’s over for him.

            my wife does not remember her violent episodes against me correctly. social services knows.

            i need a place to live. i have been vigilant about protecting our daughter, so i’ve prevented almost all violent episodes towards our daughter.

  19. Mr. E

    The woman I dated before I met my wife reacted to our break up by calling and hanging up on my answering machine for weeks. I’d get back to my place and find 20 new messages, all dial tone.

    So I changed my message to something like “Please don’t hang up on my machine, just leave a short message so I don’t have to listen to the dial tone.”

    Then I got an email from her asking why she should leave a message when I won’t call her back anyway.

    I guess dial tones beat abusive/manipulative messages, but I remember feeling a great deal of anxiety every time I got back to my room, after a being out for couple hours, to find 20 new messages on my machine.

    • SineNomine

      I remember feeling a great deal of anxiety every time I got back to my room, after a being out for couple hours, to find 20 new messages on my machine.

      That was probably her goal – if not causing anxiety, then certainly manipulating your feelings.

  20. Ron On Drums

    WOW!!!! I have had almost every one of those calls word for word from my PSYCHO Ex girlfriend. My now beloved wife heard a few when she & I got together. This campain went on for about 6 months. But the fake suicide, the threats against my job, her’s even went into threats to burn my house down, cut my balls off, kill me etc etc. As I had said in previous comments though the police refused to help. It wasn’t until I got a good female D A who’s husband had to endure similar from his ex wife that action was taken with an order of protection. Which of course she violated. These types really aren’t the sharpest knife in the drawer are they?..HA!

    Oh & I did call the police when she did the fake suicide thing on the phone. When they arrived she claimed she never said such & that I was the one who just plain nuts. There was also the fake my dad has cancer call, the fake I am pregnant & had an abortion call & it was YOUR fault I killed a baby. That one was a classic. Ahhh the memories….Or is that nightmares? I forget…lol.

    My biggest mistake was trying to engage & reason with her at first. I thought this might calm her down. But it seemed to make it last longer. Guys DO NOT make that mistake. I finally just stopped answewring after a couple of weeks. I would block her number. Then she would go and get another prepaid cell phone & start again, call from a friends house etc. I can’t beleive she would act like this in front of a friend. They must have thought she was loony.

    One of the things that stuck out in these recording that I went through was the alternating calls proclaiming her love for me, for me to PLEASE take her back etc. Then they would be followed up by threats against me when I wouldn’t return her calls.

    I can laugh now but it was pure hell. For all the guys or girls going through similar do know that there is hope. I eventually met & married a wonderful woman.

    Best of Luck Peeps

  21. Splum

    The identity of the psycho and the ex-bf have never been revealed? Wow, I’m surprised. I’m on #6, she reminds me of quite a few people I know of.
    I’m glad the recordings are out there…they’re a good reference for when to RUN!

  22. Mellaril

    On a related note, from yesterday’s news:

    Toni Jo Silvey: Accused Of Calling Ex-Boyfriend 1,000 Times, Smashing His Windows With Sword


  23. ginger

    This woman sounds just like my mother. They do the same cycle. She would abuse me, deny it and pretend it never happened twisting things and accuse me of being bad. She tantrums, bullies, threatens..then cries and threatens suicide if I don’t “forgive her” i.e. agree to act like it never happened. Then she cycles back to rageful put downs, smear campaigns, tries to isolate me from family, smashes objects at me, sneers gleefully if I show any sign of being hurt. Gloats. Then back to rapid cycling of pretending her outburts and smear campaigns never happened and gosh, I’m so immature and bad for not forgiving her. Her apologies are always done ragefully, sarcastically, cobmorbid with smear campaigns, verbal and physical abuse and attempts to tear down my self esteem and isolate me. She lies to others about me. She threatens suicide. She pouts. Tantrums. Then cycles back to pretending all her shenangigans and abusive acts away. She always twists it to make me the bad guy. She always has to be right, and will bully, threaten, abuse, smear, manipulate until she gets her way. It’s like they want to totally annihilate you. This is my mother. She uses all the tactics the above caller did. It’s ruthless and crazy making for a child to have to live with this. These types of women can be jealous of their own daughter. Jealousy is not just reserved for their significant other. Jealousy is rampant with these types. These abusive selfish disordered personality types cannot be changed. My question is, how does a child heal from having a parent treat them the way this psycho caller treated her boyfriend? We couldn’t leave, we were isolated, and raised by this tyrant. How do children of this type of woman recover?

    daughter of a psycho woman

    • Dr Tara J. Palmatier

      Hello ginger,

      Thank you for registering with Shrink4Men. Women are very welcome here. As the daughter of one of these women, you have a unique perspective to share with men who share children with an abusive wife/ex/girlfriend. You can speak to how having a chaotic, selfish, controlling, malicious, abusive mother affected you and continues to affect you.

      Being raised by someone like your mom is bound to give you a case of “fleas.” The first thing I recommend someone do with a parent like yours is to emotionally and physically distance yourself from her. Minimal or no contact is preferable. It’s too difficult, if not impossible, to heal from abuse if it is still ongoing. Second, I recommend working with a therapist who has a good understanding of these issues and isn’t going to give you the, “You only have one mother” BS and encourage you to maintain an abusive relationship.

      Kind Regards,
      Dr Tara

  24. ginger

    I realize this is a site geared for men, but I found that this article described my mother to a tee. It’s all the same behaviors..the all too familiar cyle. She abuses but twists reality to blame the victim, she twists it so that she is the victim (asking her not to abuse you or attempting to install a boundary or consequence for her abusive behavior is considering abusive and evil to her). This is the type of woman who never feels remorse and never takes accountability. My mother has to be the center of attention or else its tantrum time. She can never accept the reality of her actions and its tantrum time if anyone resists her idea of herself as perfect. Our childhood was filled with her rages; screaming, cursing, smashing dishes, slamming doors, calling her child a bitch and a slut for asking why she was being slapped. She would stab my father in the head at the dinnertable in front of all of us kids, then pout and play the victim afterwards. She was very skilled at manipulating outsiders into thinking she was the victim. She knew good behavior from bad and was adept at projecting a positive, ladylike image in public. But a depressed, resentful, bitter, jealous crazy woman behind closed doors. These women know right from wrong and are just selfish and entitled and look for ways to abuse behind closed doors so they never suffer consequences for their actions. This psycho caller could be my mother. Abuse, rage, manipulate, smear campaigns, isolate the victim, then pout, fake apologies, suicide threats, then back to abuse, tantrum, verbally abuse, smear campaign. The cycle never ends. I know how awful it must be for adult chosen relationships to deal with, but how do children recover from this type of craziness?

  25. carrynation

    Hello. I’m a first time commenter. I’m female who is newly involved with a man divorcing his HCP wife. As these things often go, I was myself involved with a physically+emotionally abusive man for close to a decade, and that relationship ended nearly a decade ago.

    Dr. T, if you are still reading this — you touch upon it above, where the psycho ex-girlfriend tries to invoke Mark’s sense of basic decency in asking him to call her upon hearing the news about her father’s illness. What should a person do if he/she receives a voicemail from the ex with the news that the ex’s mother or father has died, knowing that the ex is really not the type to lie about such a thing?

    I have not received such a voicemail, but I’ve made the mistake over the years of replying to especially provocative/instigating emails and phone calls, and thus loosely keeping my ex in my orbit. It has always lead to the common cycle of blow-ups, followed by voicemails like the above, followed by apologies, followed by blow-ups in rage at my silence despite the apologies. I hope that makes sense..?

    I also made the mistake of interrupting one of these cycles to let my ex know via text message when one of my parents had died a few years ago. The blow-ups stopped for a while, with sympathetic messages coming through from him every now and then, but not for long, as there is always a limit, isn’t there?

    I have not responded to anything since I sent that text message. I just wonder what I’ll have to do when I get a similar message from him some day. I know that ignoring it will provoke scarier blow-ups and insults than anything I’ve heard in years. I know that he’ll invoke the memory of the sympathetic messages he sent to me and tell me what a horrible person I am for not returning them. I was insulted for not doing more when a pet of his died (long after our breakup) though at the time I was trying to be a caring friend and doing everything that that would entail (long phone calls to help him through his grief, gathering photos of the pet..).

    I’m thinking about this now because the death of my own parent is still fresh, and I’m getting to that age where it is also happening to friends more often. I will feel terribly for him, as I would for anyone, but I’m terrified that both sending a sympathetic message and not sending one will bring me smack dab into the cycle again.

    Thank you so much. I’ve been reading every corner of this site and its comments all weekend. It’s very, very reassuring.

    • Dr Tara J. Palmatier

      Hi Carrynation,

      In my opinion, I think it is best to ignore such communications. You could send a reply and offer sympathy if the ex is a reasonable person with whom you had a reasonably healthy relationship. There is no being normal or nice with these types. Every communication is just an opportunity to drag you into their muck. Ignore, ignore, ignore, ignore, ignore.

  26. soulhappyhour

    Thank you for posting this. The odd thing I notice is the cadence in the voice of these people. They almost always sound the same in any conversation they have. There is a direct correlation with them mental processes they suffer and the vocalizations. I only have a small sample study to analyze (thank god). But I think the the resonance is hard to ignore.

    • Dr Tara J. Palmatier

      Hi SHH,

      I concur. I have listened to many hours of client recordings. The similarities of tone, cadence and sometimes phrasing is uncanny.

      Welcome to S4M,
      Dr Tara

  27. emelle

    Wow this is exactly what I have been struggeling after being involved with a borderline man. He put me through hell during the relationship and even more hell after I finished it. The threats, smear campaign, rages, he behaved exactly like this woman and also the same cycles, I spent two years in absolute fear of him, he is still not done, still contacting me now and then with first being nice and when I not respond starting the old broken record again of accusing me of the most outrageous things, calling me all the names under the sun (slut and liar and deciever being his favorite) even though he has absolutely no idea what I am doing because we have not been together for years. Its insane.

    And btw I am aware that this is a side for men but this behaviour is not just found in women its found in borderline people.

    I learnt one thing during this extraordinarily painful drama that trying to reason with them is completely futile. They bend reality to their needs and live in Lala land. The most scary ability they have is though to appear completely sane and “good guys” to anybody else. This whole thing left me very scarred and but reading accounts of others experiencing this really is helping me getting distance and regarding him as what he is, a nutjob.

  28. sashak





    I LIVED this. EVERY message. EVERY message…I’ve heard before.

    It was around 10 years ago, with an older woman. Dear God. You need a fucking TRIGGER WARNING on this page.

    EVERY PLOY. Every swing. Every emotional, manipulative appeal. This is HER VOICE.


  29. sashak

    BTW…the whoooole impact of these messages only rings true when you look at the timestamps. Dear Lord.

  30. cnemike

    I’m going through it right now with a BPD that has all but destroyed me. My cell phone is in a state of melt-down and the text messages would make the hair on the back of your neck stand straight up. She switches between cryingthreatening suicide and completely mindless rage about twice a day. She accuses me of planting malicious software on her computer, hacking every cell phone she gets, putting poisonous substances in nutritional supplements I bought for her, cheating, lying, hiring a gang of people to “do things” around her house to make her go crazy, planting microphones and hidden cameras in her house, plotting to kill her by making her go insane and several other things, too many to list.

    She threatened to call my mother, whom she has never met and tell her bad things about me that aren’t true. I told her not to call, but she did anyway and told my mother that I beat her and there are police reports to prove it. No such reports exist and I don’t beat her.

    I am an outspoken defender of liberty and voice government corruption on a few websites. Knowing my dislike for a president who hates the Constitution and posted a forged birth certificate on the White House website, I believe she was responsible for the two Secret Service agents who paid me a visit about 10 days ago.

    She continues to threaten me with other things. I asked two of her daughters in separate instances about a year ago, “What would your mother do if I ever tried to leave her?” They both had the exact same answer given without hesitation and as serious as they could be, “She will try and destroy your life.” Mind you I am not married to this woman. I was never engaged to her. She seems serious about it.

    Here’s the kicker. I bent over backwards to help this woman when she found herself living alone in a very bad neighborhood, an eviction notice on the door and a local slum-lord who employed a small gang to harass her at night by surrounding the house, shining laser pointers in the windows, hitting the walls with bricks, running across the roof. She had no electricity and would have had no phone service if I hadn’t paid her bill. She had no car and no one apparently wanted to help her (I wonder why?). I stayed with her until we could get her things moved to a storage facility and spent the next 6 months helping her look for a place to stay. Now I’m slated for destruction by this same bitch!

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