Broken – What did I do?

Shortly after the driving up Hailey’s ass incident and her immediately coming back for a show of strength I may have set off unintentionally the longest stretch of non-verbal communication ever. Suddenly she was everywhere. I would pass her once a day at least.

Broken is a story that is best read Chronologically to start from the beginning – Prologue

Shortly after the driving up Hailey’s ass incident and her immediately coming back for a show of strength I may have set off unintentionally the longest stretch of non-verbal communication ever. Suddenly she was everywhere. I would pass her once a day at least.

She was making sure she was driving when and where I could see her. She started to hide her car more when she would visit her new guy. And was getting less frequent there. What was 2/3 times a week and overnights became once or twice no over nights. And then I started seeing her drive up my street.

Shit! What was going on? I would talk to Darcey about it and we knew something was coming. What was worse is I could literally feel the pull in my gut. Almost every day. There is something to a cord or bonding an empath creates to someone they want to love and heal. The toxic ones are the hardest too sever. I am not even sure I believe it but I certainly could feel it. And I think worse is I wasn’t ready to cut the cord yet. But why? I still have no idea.

But I was sensing something coming. I instinctively picked up the dating apps and there she was! Back on there! I am sure this guy has no clue. And I was wondering was this for me? I think this is a Hoover. There is far too much coincidence to have it not be that right? See this is the plausible doubt of these manipulations. Even I was questioning. Of course it was for me. Maybe she sees someone else on there and can move on but probably that is just an additional benefit.

She is quickly on and off maybe a few days on the app. Which clearly shows she wants me to know she is looking but doesn’t want to get caught. Two weeks later she appears on another app. But I saw her in the neighborhood tucked way in the back on a side street on Valentine’s Day. Just yuck. I know she can’t be alone on Valentine’s day. I was him just last year. Spending the night with me while she had other plans eventually to go back to James.

Throughout February I barely see her car parked anywhere near him or his building. But I see her sooo much. Then one day what is she doing… She is walking the street, like an exercise walk. She even starts passing in front of my building. I don’t know why I managed to see all these things. I wonder if she was doing it when I wasn’t noticing. But I saw her do it at least 4 times. Could you imagine doing this. Felt like she was trying to induce a chance encounter.

But I was also thinking what was she even doing walking this area. And then I discovered it… “I am moving downtown.” She did. She is now .4 miles north of me when at home .25 miles away south of me at work. And 500 feet from me when with the new guy. I was literally surrounded.

I even caught her driving in the neighborhood at strange hours while I was taking the extra street or two at night to see if she was around. This was coming to a head. I would estimate we saw each other about 20 times in the form of just passing by each other. Mostly while looking for each other.

Then it came, the read deal no doubt about it Hoover… She was on Tinder wearing my necklace. The very necklace she used to hoover me before. It was not even questionable. I sent the picture to Jennifer and Darcey and they confirmed yup that it wasn’t a picture someone like her would put there. And it was obvious what she was doing.

This was torture… What did I do?… What do I do?

Author: Matt

Hi, I’m Matt. Just your average uneventful guy. Dedicated Dad, emapth, and nurturer. Going through something I couldn’t possible ever thought possible. My story is called Broken. About an affair at the end of a long marriage and how ultimately I experienced the worst heartbreak of my life. It's honest, raw, and a little bit entertaining. I hope to share my story so people can learn while being therapeutic for myself.

21 thoughts on “Broken – What did I do?”

      1. I particularly dislike the necklace thing. That was gifted to her in love… she’s using that, and by default stomping on your feelings, by using it to manipulate and lure you.

        She wants to be chased again. Maintain the upper hand.


  1. You ask…”This was torture… What did I do?… What do I do?”.
    I have loved following your journey, Matt. I have a lot of empathy for you for how deeply your heart was broken. But what you need to do…is stop. No matter how hard it is…stop. Be in control of your own behaviors. Feelings are harder to control, but you ARE in control of your own behavior.
    Stop playing games with her…that is what it is when you “drive up her ass”.
    Stop looking out the window for her, stop driving around looking for what side street her car is tucked away on.
    Stop checking various dating apps, looking for her. If you accidentally come across her profile because you are seeking someone new, don’t click on her profile.
    Ignore her when you do run into her by chance, when it is unavoidable. Look away, don’t speak to her.
    Start living your life again, put your energy toward finding someone special who is worthy of you.
    That is what you do, Matt. Hailey has nothing good to offer you. I know that you want answers, you want justice. But the thing is…she will never be able to give you answers for how she has behaved or how she has treated you. And, there is no “justice” after a broken heart…at least, not in my experience of life.
    You were in a long time marriage with the wrong person. And, Hailey came in and destroyed what was left. Time to pick up the pieces. You have that choice. Hailey may be forcing herself on you right now, by being everywhere, but you have the choice to ignore her. She will grow bored and move on if she stops getting a reaction.
    I say these things out of a caring place, Matt. I want to see you happy and emotionally healthy.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Hi Nora- I appreciate you saying things from a caring place. And of course rationally these are all things I would like to do. But more than anything for my support and what is is best for me is for people to hear me. And based on your comment it feels like you are not hearing me. Or maybe you are not believing that this is abuse? Not believing in the acts of Narcissism or the traits?

      I am not playing games with her. 3 minutes of fuck you to someone who has systematically bullied and abused me doesn’t warrant a corrective action on my part. I am harder on myself than anyone. I hate the fact I am still hurt, I hate that I have to see her, I would much rather her be gone. But I am not making that choice she is. I asked her more than once to give me space. And the questions isn’t what my response should be? It should be: why wouldn’t she give me that space?

      That day I did drive a little close but let’s not make more of it than it is on my part. It’s her reaction to possibly turn over her life and mine just for seeing me for a few minutes for the first time in months. This is the behavior that needs to be examined. What she is doing to the new guy right now is what was done to me in Oct. And so you can see the patterns of behaviors and manipulations from the other side. So I have answers. It’s not about answers or justice for a broken heart. It’s about the justice of exposing this behavior.

      And she is doing all this, playing with two peoples lives, all in the name of what makes her feel better in for a small stretch of time. Besides this would have happened eventually anyways. That’s the point when you ignore a Narcissist. They get more aggressive. You saying she will get “bored” is not understanding how this person behaves. She will only leave me in states of respite if she thinks I am too dangerous to hoover. Otherwise she is far more likely to be back than go away permanently as long as I am within those sphere of contact. Which i currently am just because of proximity with several choices she has made. And she will continually poke until a reaction is given. But you asking me to “ignore” it is me altering my life to accommodate her abuse.

      Also Referring to this is heartbreak is not understanding that it’s a symptom of the abuse not a root cause in my recovery. So ignoring my abuser is not that simple. Having a “choice in your behavior” is not understanding this at all.

      Choice of behavior is made in your Frontal Cortex. Except I am having a Limbic System response. I am in constant flight or fight mode. So situational context can’t even happen. I can’t rationalize yet because that part of my brain is shutting down. But even with these continuous Traumatic responses. I have chosen to ignore her. I have maintained no contact through out. So my body wants to fight but I luckily, within a few minutes of the adrenaline spike, can make reasonable choices.

      When I look for her when I leave or arrive in my neighborhood it is because I am seeing if it is “safe”. Safe to have a good day, to go for a run, to walk to the store, and don’t have prepare my body for IF I see her. And my window faces the street. I chose this apartment for it’s view. I AM living my life. She chose to move into it. I am not sitting by the window waiting for her. I am certainly not driving around for hours a day.

      People will see these things as games. But they are not. It’s not a game. These are typical narc and victim responses to each other that have been documented over and over. It is the Narc’s response to control a supply of fuel. And the victims response is to the trauma of constant gaslighting, manipulations and in my case passive agressive bullying. But it appears to the common person as just something unfortunate or no big deal just ignore her.

      That is the point of my blog Nora. I am not going to write a different story. This is the one that needs to be told. Dismissing what Hailey did to me would be like never really dealing what is wrong with me. And right now that is most likely PTSD for essentially enduring the abuse cycles and then wrapping it up by having an affair and moving in next door with the guy she was having an affair with. And being reminded a few times a week of this very thing, on purpose.

      Think about that fact when you think I should “ignore” her. Or that I was susceptible to this. There is nothing I am or I do that needs to be changed. I am an empath someone who is capable of deep love. I can’t change that and I am not sure I want to. But that is why I was abused or taken advantage of. I need to heal not change.

      Imagine the person you love one day disappearing then 6 weeks later come to tell you (by text) they love someone else and are moving in next door. See if it was something you might not be traumatized by or you could ignore? Nora I wonder what this is about? Is it me trying to play psychologist? Is it that offensive to you that I can’t be heard before I am told to “rub some dirt on it” and move on? I consider you a friend and valued voice but I don’t understand where this “push” is coming from?

      I am a strong, physically and mentally, man and one of the most rational and grounded people I can think of. I don’t lack self esteem (clearly based on that last statement), or hate myself. So if I could get out of this don’t you think I would want to? Me trying to recover in this climate and her proximity is like asking a heroin addict to recover in a room full of opioids. Eventually you have to be strong enough to stand in that room but not within a few minutes of coming off your last hit. And this is what it is, and it’s like picking a scab every day so it never heals which reinforces the trauma.

      The last bit I will leave you with a quote from FKA Twigs on suffering abuse: “I often wonder if it’s even appropriate to ask … why didn’t you leave?… Because the question should really be to the abuser: why are you holding someone hostage with abuse?”

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I have no words, wearing that necklace on the app just solidified what you are now seeing about her. I’m still available for bitch slaps, frankly at this point I’d do it for FREE!!!!! She’s damn lucky I’m in NY and not where you are lol

    Liked by 1 person

  3. ‘a quote from FKA Twigs on suffering abuse: “I often wonder if it’s even appropriate to ask … why didn’t you leave?… Because the question should really be to the abuser: why are you holding someone hostage with abuse?” ‘
    This! To be honest, I am glad you explained more fully to Nora about what your behaviour is about. Unless a person has actually been in this situation it is very difficult to fundamentally understand the damage that is done to the survivor of the abuse. I am 12 years down the line from my marriage and I still have PTSD and I know I am trauma bonded to him. I ‘see’ him everywhere, even though he lives 86.2 miles away from me! It isn’t him I’m seeing though, it’s normal people, going about their daily business utterly unaware that they have just shocked me to the point I want to curl up in a ball and hide somewhere so they can’t see me. I don’t understand my behaviour, it comes out of the blue and with no warning it’s like it all happened just yesterday and I am fighting for my freedom all over again. Even during the Tom years I had severe PTSD, I second guessed every thought I had, every word he said to me, and I looked for the deceit of gas lighting under every stone, ever likely we would blow up in the end. It destroys everything we build and we don’t know how to stop the feeling crawling over us and back inside us. I often wonder what I would do if I ever saw my ex-husband again, and honestly, I think I would look for a sharp stabby object. I have said it often, I only do fight, not flight.
    He destroyed my peace of mind along with my ability to trust my own instincts. I consider myself a strong, well balanced and intelligent woman, but when I stand in the chemist and see his name on my son’s epilepsy medication, put there accidently by an inept clerk, I have a royal meltdown and see red mist. I went straight into panic mode, had he moved back into the area? was he using my address to obtain his medication? Was he hiding in plain sight? How do I protect myself and my son?
    Within a nanosecond of all of those thoughts rushing me, I was sat in the corner of the pharmacy shivering in shock and being told my doctor was on his way.
    There is no rational explanation for our knee jerk reactions to these people. They have conditioned us to behave exactly the way that they want and it was all done in such a miniscule drip drip effect over a long period of time in my case, in yours a scant year. The length of time they take to do this to us doesn’t matter, it’s the frequency with which it happens. It never allows your brain to rest and heal before the next onslaught begins.
    The one thing I know that holds true for all narcissistic types is this, they discard you for just long enough that you think they have really gone this time and you begin the slow process of healing, and just when you think you might actually be getting somewhere, they suddenly turn up again and bang! just like that you are right back at square one.
    I see the obsessive attention to detail you have paid to each sighting, and it is obsessive, it’s you trying to prepare yourself and mentally protect yourself. If you know her pattern, she can be predicted, to a certain degree. Unfortunately it doesn’t stop the shock that runs through you, it doesn’t stop the jolt you get each time you register that she is close. It doesn’t break the trauma bond no matter how hard you try to move on. That is why it’s called abuse. Over here in the UK laws have actually been passed now that can see a narcissist sent to prison for gas lighting, coercive control, financial control, emotional control and domestic violence. It’s all considered to come under the Domestic Abuse law and a woman was sent to prison for 5 years for the damage she did to her partner. Hers was an excessive case where she burnt him with cigarettes amongst other things, but he was mentally and physically abused for 5 years. Why did he stay? He didn’t have a choice. He had no control, nowhere to go and no one who would believe him, and more importantly, he was told over and over that he was the one who was in the wrong and he believed her.
    In Nora’s defence, I think she was coming to you as a friend and asking you to take care not to let this swamp you, take over your life entirely and I believe she was hopeful you could find a way to move on in spite of Hailey. In fairness, most people who have not lived with this kind of abuse would say the same thing. I do know Nora does not come on here as a mental health professional but as a woman who enjoys discourse, reading others stories and offering her own support in her own way as an empathic human being. I hope you can see that in her words. She is the epitome of kindness and would never judge you, or be sneeped by you. She has followed your story from day one and has written her support of you on each post. Don’t lose sight of that when she offers her view, she is struggling to understand why you ‘refuse’ to move on. We know it isn’t that simple, but an innocent bystander does not.
    Consider how you might react had this never happened to you and you saw someone you cared for behaving the way you and I and other survivors do. You would no doubt shake your head and say, it’s time to put this one to bed, she’s gone, you need to get up and move forward.
    I know that because before it happened to me, that’s exactly what I would think.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I agree Gemma I don’t mind the discourse but as much as I want to be free. I also want to elevate this discourse so the innocent bystander is no longer ‘innocent’. This kind of abuse and the victims need to be seen as such. It is that understanding just like the efforts with removing the shame of which we view mental illness. It will only take understanding like there must be in the UK if there are laws against it now.


  4. The bulk of the Bill is still going through but it will be passed. Gaslighting has already been made a criminal offence that carries a 5 year prison sentence with it if found guilty, It won’t take long for the rest to follow. The debates were held just before the pandemic started, so progress has obviously slowed down but I believe gas lighting got through on its own and was passed as criminal because of the severe damage to mental health that is caused and it is deemed as calculated harm to another.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. It makes total sense. If there was a way to ‘report’ Hailey I am sure I could show her personality disorder and the effect her gaslighting has on others mental health. I wonder how it will be enforced. I assume by a mental health professional?


      1. I would think that a court appointed psychologist/psychiatrist would be brought in to assess the accused, pretty much the same way they assess to see if you are fit to stand trial when claiming not guilty by reason of diminished responsibility or temporary insanity etc. I do know that the judges in the UK are all massively up to speed on this subject and they have all undergone extensive training to recognise narcissistic traits in the court room. My favourite one is the one I just told you about in one of my other comments. That Judge was a diamond!

        Liked by 1 person

  5. I will just say this though, the law about domestic abuse only changed to zero tolerance against domestic abusers 12 years ago. Up until then it was literally referred to as a ‘domestic’ and the police did not get involved because they said it would be a ‘he said, she said’ situation. I have watched these laws for a very long time and I have written many, many letters to the MP’s in the department of Justice, lobbying for them to address the outdated and woefully inadequate laws supposedly protecting us from violence in the home. Nothing changed for years, but at least the zero tolerance for D.A. meant that I could call the police and finally, finally have my then husband arrested for common assault when he punched me in the face. That day set me free, he never came back home again after that. The new laws recently passed and going through parliament right now are way more powerful and all encompassing and they will set a great many people free from the hell they are living in. Every Country needs to recognise the domestic abuse pandemic we have all been living with for a very long time.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. These are steps in the right direction. I can’t believe you had to endure this. My heart breaks for you in those moments. I know you are strong and better but still… you deserved a whole lot better.

      Liked by 1 person

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