I am part of a nationwide club that has an online community of members. I have befriended many of them on Facebook and have gotten to know many of them in person over the years. One man I “met” online was well-liked and known for loving his family. When I was out of food and money after being unemployed in 2011, he sent me a cash gift that helped me get by when my own family couldn’t loan me grocery money during my pregnancy. I didn’t forget that. My own father refused to help and told me to go get welfare…even though I had a new job lined up to start a week later. I developed a good opinion of this man. He was a good family man, retired military man, father and Christian. He was funny and helpful and charitable. He and I sometimes exchanged messages and he encouraged me after my first child was born and I was struggling to pay bills. One day about three years ago, he confided that he’d found out his wife was cheating on him. She was much younger and very attractive and I was sad for him. Over the years, he went from sad to enraged. Around the time I met my ex narcopath, he concluded that his wife was a sociopath as well. We shared stories and he gave me advice. I related to him because of my own stories. However, I noticed after a while that he didn’t really have stories of being abused. He seemed more mad that he was losing his possession. He began to give me rather aggressive advice–nothing about physical abuse, but he told me to study war tactics and get very strong about dealing with my sociopath ex. I started to feel uncomfortable about how opinionated he was on the topic. I did not want to doubt his claims, because I know how it felt when people denied my experiences with being abused. However, I started to feel odd. I ended up de-friending him on Facebook and wondering if he wasn’t the narcissist. I still don’t know.
Narcissists and sociopaths are so good at confusing people and playing the victim. They leave you believing the abuser and thinking the victim is a liar. I just didn’t know what to think about this man. He seemed to love his kids, but I felt like he was showing them off and being very obvious about their visits. He claimed his wife was taking all his money, but posted photos of the designer dog he bought and all the gourmet dinners he made with his kids. I wondered if maybe he just wasn’t used to having a reduced income yet. He told stories about his wife denying and neglecting his kids, though, and they seemed realistic. His kids looked happy with him and he swore they were going to testify that they wanted to live with him. His divorce dragged on with him getting witnesses against his wife and going through many court dates. Apparently lately, things had not been going his way.
A couple days ago, he shot his estranged wife then killed himself. People are quick to label him as violent. I’m confused. Was the guy who sent me money when I had nothing to eat really an abuser? (I can guarantee my ex sociopath would never willingly part with money to help someone.) Was that why his wife cheated? Was she innocent and he just wanted to control and destroy her? I have no idea. I thought I was good at reading narcissists, but they really do fool us sometimes. Whatever the case, if she was the sociopath he said she was, his killing two people is definitely NOT a good or healthy response. I am upset and sad. I can’t stop wondering what the truth was in this situation.