Hi, I'd like to help you with your question.
It does sound like this woman may have a personality disorder. Although I cannot be sure since I would need to see her face to face for an evaluation, your description is good enough to tell me that a personality disorder probably fits. She sounds manipulative and she deliberately used you then gave you a story about what a hardship it would be on her if you pressed charges. This tells you that she is thinking about herself and not what she did to you.
There are a few personality disorders she fits. One is Borderline personality disorder. People with Borderline have trouble with relationships, they frequently change jobs, they develop intense relationships with family, friends and co workers, and they often engage in risky behavior, such as stealing.
Another possible personality disorder is Histrionic. A person with Histrionic personality disorder often strives to be the center of attention. They also shift moods quickly and they act very dramatically, like they are in front of an audience. They are also self centered and do not think of others.
This person could be a combination of personality disorders as well, taking symptoms from a few or a lot of the disorders.
Most people with personality disorders are able to be cured through therapy, but it is difficult to do so since many of them lack insight into their behavior and see nothing wrong with it.
You handle the situation the best you could. Bringing charges would have been fine too because she would have had consequences to her behavior. But letting it go is fine as well. Alerting your friends and family to this woman's behavior and not having contact with her is probably a good idea though. She will most likely continue to manipulate and she may try to draw you back in or try to steal from you again, since she thinks she might not be charged.
Let me know if I can help in any other way,Kate
I understand. The more you mention what this woman did, the more it does sound like she is Borderline. She probably thought she would get away with what she did if she made up enough stories to be believable. People with these disorders will make up anything that seems slightly plausible then will see if you buy it. It usually is very exhausting to deal with them because it takes so much work to determine what is the truth and what is not. Often, people with personality disorders do not recognize that they are so obvious with their behavior. And sometimes they are right, people do not pick up on it. But you saw this woman for what she is and that will help you protect yourself from her or anyone else like her again.
It sounds like you have a very good heart and you were just trying to help. Unfortunately, that is what sometimes attracts those with problems like personality disorders. But now that you are on to her and have had this experience, you'll do just fine!