Few, if any, people who married a psychopath did so intentionally. Psychopaths are excellent manipulators who are experts at hiding their true nature — for a while, at least. They can be very charming and convince you that they are your soulmate. It might not be until after the wedding that they reveal who they really are.
This can happen to anyone. Unfortunately, being in a relationship with someone with psychopathy usually is a traumatic experience. Most psychopaths lack empathy, remorse and the ability to tell right from wrong. With a partner, their goal is to manipulate the other person to suit their selfish goals. They use charm to draw the person close and make them fall in love, then use abuse and other methods to try to keep them from leaving.
Common effects of being married to a psychopath
The physical and mental effects can be severe. In a university study, 457 participants answered survey questions about a current or former romantic relationship with a psychopath. Participants reported a range of effects, including:
- Chronic anxiety, depression, anger and other negative symptoms
- Self-hatred and suicidal ideation
- Digestive issues and ulcers
- Chronic illnesses like rheumatoid arthritis, diabetes and asthma
- Poor self-care, such as alcohol or drug abuse and changes in hygiene habits
- Isolation or changes in socializing activities.
- Post-traumatic stress disorder symptoms, including insomnia, flashbacks and difficulty focusing.
Living with these effects of trauma can feel nearly impossible. But researchers found that many participants recovered after their relationships ended. Their resilience led them to become stronger people after they healed from the trauma.
In your corner during a potentially difficult divorce
Divorce is rarely easy, but getting divorced from a psychopath can complicate matters even more. Having an experienced and compassionate divorce attorney on your side is critical to getting through the divorce process as quickly and fairly as possible.