Realizing My Ex has Antisocial Personality Disorder

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I have been healing from the betrayal of my lover for the past fifteen months. From reading, I know that recovering from betrayal of this type is often traumatic and can take a very long time. However, even through writing and seeing an excellent therapist for over a year now to deal with this traumatic event in my life, something was just not clicking. I was just not moving forward.

I could tell myself the events of my life which led up to the betrayal. However, I could not just call this man an asshole and move on. There was something missing. My therapist has told me that this man has Antisocial Personality Disorder as well as Narcissistic Personality Disorder, and that recovering from a relationship with a person with this diagnosis is especially difficult because of how twisted these individuals are inside. They do not think like you and I. They are incapable of empathy.

“The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, fourth edition (DSM IV-TR), defines antisocial personality disorder (in Axis II Cluster B) as:[1]

A) There is a pervasive pattern of disregard for and violation of the rights of others occurring since age 15 years, as indicated by three or more of the following:

  1. failure to conform to social norms with respect to lawful behaviors as indicated by repeatedly performing acts that are grounds for arrest;
  2. deception, as indicated by repeatedly lying, use of aliases, or conning others for personal profit or pleasure;
  3. impulsiveness or failure to plan ahead;
  4. irritability and aggressiveness, as indicated by repeated physical fights or assaults;
  5. reckless disregard for safety of self or others;
  6. consistent irresponsibility, as indicated by repeated failure to sustain consistent work behavior or honor financial obligations;
  7. lack of remorse, as indicated by being indifferent to or rationalizing having hurt, mistreated, or stolen from another;
B) The individual is at least age 18 years.
C) There is evidence of conduct disorder with onset before age 16 years.
D) The occurrence of antisocial behavior is not exclusively during the course of schizophrenia or a manic episode.”
(Quoted from :
Here is the first version of my story which I have written while viewing my ex husband through the lens Antisocial and Narcissistic Personality Disorder:
I am recovering from a relationship with a man with Narcissistic & Anti Social Personality Disorder. This man was my first husband. I left him because he had a drug problem & was involved with drug dealers back in 1989, taking our baby daughter with me. I had no contact with him during her entire childhood, moved to another state, and never sought child support to keep him out of our lives. Unfortunately, because of our deep ‘soul connection’ which I now know to be a hallmark sign of a relationship with a narcissist, I spent twenty years pining for him. No one could match his place in my heart. I saw him as a victim who fell in with the wrong crowd. We didn’t hear from him until 2007. Absolutely zero contact for eighteen years. On what would have been our twentieth wedding anniversary, he sent me an amazing anniversary card which read, “You are, and always have been, the love of my life.”

 My close friends were extremely suspicious. My college aged daughter was suspicious. But that card melted my heart to my soul. I cried and cried. And he stepped forward, and apologised,and said the right words, and sent chocolates and gifts. His first act towards the daughter he’d never supported was to send her a pair of diamond earrings with an apology note.

 He was very careful to put himself forward in the best light possible. He convinced his family, my family, our daughter and me that he’d quit drugs years before, and that he’d been longing to be reunited to us but didn’t know how to find us.

 Within three months, he and I were back together in a whirlwind romance. I was never so happy in all my life. He was my every dream come true. He was our daughter’s every dream come true.

 The honey moon period lasted nearly a year. The devaluation period took me by surprise. I was the most perfectly beautiful woman in the world but why wouldn’t I dress nicely to go for a walk with him? Maybe I should let him pick out my glasses next time. Suddenly, he no longer wanted to embrace me when I arrived at his house for our once a month visits. (We lived 100 miles away, not surprisingly, I was the one who had to travel, he was never inconvenienced.) All of a sudden the most patient, kind, loving soul mate, my other half, would snap at me about the smallest things. I would be thinking, why have I driven all the way down here? Slowly, very slowly, things began to disintegrate.

 I realized that he had not been honest about the drugs. Yes, he was still getting high. By the end, I realized he was also popping pills he’s obtained illegally. At the beginning of the relationship he’d claimed he’s ‘had a few beers on the weekend with friends’ it was starting to be clear that he was drinking alone every night.

To make a long story short, in October, 2010, I discovered in the space of a few days, that he’d been having an affair with another woman for over a year, he was still selling drugs with the same old crowd from 1989, he was living a double life between his day job and his drug dealing, he had several online accounts and aliases for facebook and online sex subscriptions. In short, he was a total addict through and through, in addition to his personality disorders.

 I ended the relationship immediately, and our daughter also backed out of her relationship with her father. I have been seeing a therapist ever since and have been writing a blog about my healing journey, which has been very long, complicated and painful.

 I keep getting stuck thinking that this is personal, what happened between this man and I. I know, cognitively, that it is not. In the past year, I came across the definition for both Narcissistic and Anti Social P.D. and he fits ninety percent of both descriptions. He has never taken any responsibility for any of the harm he’s caused his family, sees himself as the victim, and thinks there’s nothing wrong with his lifestyle.

Now, mentally, I am telling myself over and over again that none of what happened is personal. It’s not between me and him. It’s between himself and his own twisted mind and I am lucky to be rid of him and happy that he lives 100 miles away.


19 thoughts on “Realizing My Ex has Antisocial Personality Disorder

    • Wow. I really thought I was alone, I still suffer inside and wish the hurt would end already, but try and get through it again the next day. I was with him for 13 years,he had my home raided due to his drug habits, almost got our kids taken away,and emotionally shut me out by sleeping on the living room floor and refusing to talk to or aknowledge me in my own home. The stress became so bad that I became ill, when I finally needed to go to the hospital,I had to call the paramedics to come and get me (he was downstairs watching his favorite show). To add to the torture, I learned that he had been sleeping with my next-door neighbor (who I really considered a friend) while I was made to sleep alone upstairs wondering what I did wrong. Needless to say he’s out of mine and my kids lives. I learned from one of my boys that he had been treating the kids as bad as he was treating me,by forcing them to stay locked in thier room when I wasn’t home. Its a long road to recovering from his sick abuse, but I plan to get us there. Thank you for sharing your story,and best of luck to you and your daughter.

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  8. spent so many years blaming myself, to realize recently i was being manipulated!! From our very first meeting, down to our very last meeting, i was under his control. The way he did it in the beginning and also years later were through his eyes, he could control me with his eyes, he only needed to stand still and i melted every time. Am slowly getting freer of this type of control, but the journey is not and has not been easy

  9. I have just recently learned myself that my entire relationship of 12 years has been a fraud. My counselor diagnosed my husband with this. Once I had started catching him in stealing from me and he could see that I was onto him, he tried to murder me, but I escaped to my neighbors and called the police. They found him in our garage where he had attempted suicide by hanging himself. Unfortunately, the bastard lived and is still making my life hell since I got a P.F.A. against him. I am having an extremely difficult time accepting this diagnosis because it has done so much to me inside. My trust is destroyed. He was an extremely abusive man to me the entire relationship, and I continued to put up with it even after having him arrested twice. But to learn that he has been extremely unfaithful to me, lied about money he was making on the side, and has been stealing from me and Amish people he was working for, it has just blown me away. I don’t know how to cope with the bitterness and the sense of betrayal because I do take it very personal what he has done to my life. The reality of knowing he never really loved me, isn’t capable of love, emotions, empathy or remorse is just very hard to swallow. He is going on about his life like I never existed which hurts me horribly inside. How will I ever recover from the emotional damage he has done to me?

  10. Thank you. I have just gotten out of a relationship with a man with ASPD and I am finding it incredibly difficult. I thank you from the bottom of my heart.

    • Hi Natasha,
      Sorry, I have been very busy at work and haven’t been on here for awhile. How have are you holding out? I am glad that you have found my blog to be helpful. I am now 2 1/2 years past the date of the break up and my feelings have hardened to bitterness. But that first year, Wow. The amazing never-ending feeling of falling, and of losing myself in the grief, it was the worst thing I’ve ever experienced. I hope you are hanging on and finding a way to get through. Namaste, Ixchel

  11. Tour story is very inspiring and how strong of a person tou are, it very scary but you did the right thing for you and your daughter,I’m going threw family court at the moment and in family court discovery my x has anti social personility disored and I have a two year old boy I had no idea that there was such a disorder until I went threw family court and i found out he had it he lied to me and never told me but I never understood why he acted like he did untill I went to family court and found out the hole truth

    • Valerie,

      From what I have heard, you are very lucky that family court discovered that your ex has anti social personality disorder. I hope that it has made a difference and that the court is using this to limit his visitation to your daughter.
      Keeping you in my prayers,


  12. I am in a relationship with a man (i think he has antisocial personality disorder) who cheated on me for 15 months too. He has lived with me for a year (I helped him get his job), but prior to that he lived with his mother and was jobless for almost 5 years. The day I found out about his cheating (in facebook messages with the other woman) he apologised, but the very next day, he said I should “get over it” and if I brought it up, he told me I was “bludgeoning” him. It’s been almost 10 months since I found out and it seems to get worse, not better. The thing that is confusing is that he is very loving, affectionate, good with my children, and super personable. But if I say that I still can’t get over his cheating, he tells me that it’s my problem, gives me the silent treatment, and tells me that I know that he will react that way so it’s my fault that he doesn’t talk to me. If I cry, he says mean things like “I can’t deal with this sh**.” I don’t know what to do. I love him and I want to take care of him but my self esteem is at about zero now and he doesn’t care. The worst thing about his cheating — he would talk to me on the phone, tell me he loved me and then hop in the car to see her. I once sent him a huge box of birthday presents and he cheated on me the next day….not only cheated, but asked me to call at 10 pm and he was cheating for the entire 2 hrs that I was trying to reach him. I knew that when I found his Facebook messages with her. He doesn’t get how hurtful this is.

    • One of the best things that happened to me, right after I found out about my ex’s cheating, was that a friend posted about it on facebook (with my permission) and one of her friends wrote, “She’d better toss him to the curb. Once a cheater, always a cheater.”

      Have you spoken to a professional therapist about the situation (for yourself, I’m not suggesting couples therapy.) It sounds like a tough situation.


  13. Oh I need reassurance. I’ve been researching personality disorders and every single article I read fits my ole man to a tee. But I have so many other unexplained behaviors of his that I just don’t know where they fit into. I had been made to think all the things I questioned him about, big whereabouts, phone calls, lies inner actions with other women, we all misconstrued and fabricated on my own insecure over active mind. That I am making up fantasies in my head. And I’m.nuts,(how do i come up with this stuff) disappearing , defensiveness , anger, outbursts, taunting belittling.. Then wants a hug acts as if nothing happened. Blaming the lies and sneaky behaviour. Word stange sexual behaviors that I realize he has patiently led me into. That absolutely are horrifying me yet he is totally self serving him own pleasure and ignore any discomfort out hesitation I may have. He can but my do deeply emotionally and have absolutely no emotion and act as if out it didn’t happen.happily carrying in while I stand crushed. Hes made fun of My crying and pain just shut he loudly caused it. I’m to a point more after on and off relationship over 23 years, I’m scared. Could he possibly drugged me and have Mr to a group of guys his friends to tape and film the whole thing fit fun and then not admit to out and not feel any remorse and act as if I’m crazy, I saw the video

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