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TherapistMaryAnn, Counselor
Category: Relationship
Satisfied Customers: 5838
Experience:  Over 20 years experience specializing in anxiety, depression, drug and alcohol, and relationship issues
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Thanks for the bonus question :) How can I get stronger and

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Thanks for the bonus question :)
How can I get stronger and stand in the face of his manipulation. for some reason, today after I replied to his msg, I felt stronger and that i am on my way to see him just like any other colleague. Today, remembering how he fooled me and all the moments with him was much less than what it used to be until yesterday. why do you think? how do I keep it up. I don't feel the heavy weight I felt yesterday that was pressuring my heart and mind. I felt that I will be able to deal with him as I deal with any other guy.
Your advice will be appreciated on how I keep this feeling up. what steps I should take. if you have explanation as to why I felt this way, I would be more than happy to understand. :)

Many thanks again.
Thank you for the positive rating and bonus! You are very kind.

You are probably feeling stronger and are able to see him more like the others because you stood up to him. Whenever we do something that breaks a hurtful cycle of behavior or take an action that goes against something that is hurting us, it tends to build up our self esteem and help us feel stronger. What you did went against the cycle of manipulation he has used on you since the beginning. And you held your own and did not allow his behavior to change what you felt you needed to do. That is going to build up your self esteem and your sense of power, something he cannot take away unless you say so.

Continue to look for ways to get him out of your life, as much as possible. If he tries to manipulate, think about what you want then do separately from what he says then do that instead, no matter what he might say. And if he pushes, ignore him and do what is good for you. Put yourself first in all situations with him. And most of all, do not listen to his words if he tries to manipulate or otherwise get your attention. Act in the opposite way- bored, uninterested, waiting for him to be done. Or cut him off politely but firmly. Stick only to business and ignore everything else he does.

TherapistMaryAnn and other Relationship Specialists are ready to help you

Thank you so much, Mays! I am happy to help. FYI-If you post another question you may want to put "Kate" at the beginning. Other experts might try to answer otherwise. Not saying another opinion is not ok- it is :) But just in case you want to continue with me. Thanks again!



Customer: replied 4 years ago.
Oh I forgot to do that, i thought it would come to u since it was a reply :D
Thanks a lot.
Of course another opinion is ok, but no need for distraction. I prefer to continue with u since now u have the full background. Happy to continue with u.
My guess is that this guy will not call me 2 morrow cuz he likes to leave hanging in there waiting for him. Ghe good news is that I am not :)

Many thanks again,

You're welcome! Let me know how things go today and if he calls you. I am hoping he doesn't keep trying to manipulate you, but given how you have taken control of this situation, I think he might be greatly surprised at your reaction. If you should want any support, I am here.

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Customer: replied 4 years ago.


Just as I expected. He did not call. He likes to keep me waiting for him. It makes me sad to see that he is still playing these games. I don't want to fall for his games. I am trying to be a professional with him and act like a professional. He keeps acting like a child.

My expectation is that he will do one of two things: eihter he will not contact me at till tomorrow, or he will text later at night saying that he couldn't call today cuz he was soo busy and he will ask to call me at night. My approach will be that I will tell him to email me his comments just like the others as I don't see a need to discuss anything.

It kills me that I am even bothered with this behaviour. I don't want him to have an impact on me like that.

what do you think?

It sounds like you have him pegged, Mays. He is acting exactly like you expected and you called it before hand. So in a way, this is good. You are onto his behavior and know what to expect. So you can plan accordingly with your responses.

What you were saying about his next move and how you want to handle it is a good plan. If he would try to control you by saying he wants to contact you in the evening or at another time, you can simply tell him that everyone is contacting you via email and that you expect him to do the same. You can say that you already accommodated him once and he did not follow through so you are only willing to accept his comments via email. If he does try to ignore you and call you anyway, it is ok to either tell him again about the boundaries, or you can ignore his call. Either one that makes you feel more in control.

His behavior is probably going to continue to bother you for a while. There was a strong emotional connection for you with his behavior until just recently, so that is going to come up when he acts in such a way that it triggers you and what you felt for him. The more you stick to what you are doing now and continue to work on seeing him for what he really is, the easier this will get with time. I suspect that soon his behavior will have a lot less of an effect on you.

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Thank you! Let me know how things go.

Customer: replied 4 years ago.
Hi, I will definitely.
He texted me as i expected and he said he was busy all morning. He also asked when is the meeting gonna take place and when told him the time he said: i should talk to u. I told him u can send me an email or call me in the office tomorrow. I told him that i won't be in the office until 8:30 am he said ok and that he will call.
I think i made a mistake by giving him the option to call again.
I don't know why i did that. I guess i was trying to act normally. But i am not happy with this at all.
If this guy was playing me, why is he insisting on bothering me like this. He can find other girls very easily!
I need to heal and move on , but when he appears like this every now and then in my life, he takes me back to square one.
Sometimes i tell myself, maybe he really lives and trying to keep me but he is approaching me slightly, but then i tell myself: stop being stupid!!
What am I supposed to do? Plz help me, i couldn't even study today!!

It is expected that you will go back and forth when you talk to him about how you feel. You will slip back into the old behavior easily so expect that will happen. But each step you take towards setting boundaries with him is a step closer to getting him out of your life.

He has the option of calling you tomorrow, however that does not mean you cannot continue to set boundaries. If he does call, stick to work only. And if he tries to text you or tell you on the phone that he needs to contact you again, tell him no. You may want to work on what you feel would be some good responses.

You can practice some simple to the point things you can say back to him when he tries to manipulate you. Write down what you feel are his common manipulations and what you feel you want your responses to him to be and practice them. Do it until you feel comfortable saying these things back to him.

He probably continues to manipulate because this is how he relates in his relationships. If he has a personality disorder like I suspect, the way he acts is something he learned as a child. Personality disorders are typically ingrained behaviors that someone develops, usually in response to being raised in a dysfunctional home. The person could not get their needs met (for unconditional love and attention) so they developed other ways to get what they needed which usually involved dysfunctional behaviors. When they grow up, they continued these behaviors even when they were no longer needed. And if he felt that his previous manipulations worked on you, he will continue to try them. He may also want control so he keeps trying to make you do things to accommodate him. And the more he senses that you are pulling away, the more he will try to control you with his behaviors. In order to deal with him, it helps to think through your boundaries and be ready for whatever he says or does.


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Thank you, Mays!
Customer: replied 4 years ago.
Kate, thanx to u indeed
Good ideas, i will practce that and will let u know how things go.
You're welcome :) Please do let me know how it goes. This is not easy I know but I think you are well on your way to getting out of this relationship and onto a better path.

Customer: replied 4 years ago.
Hello Kate,
Today he did not contact me. I went to the meeting and i shared the other members' ideas . Then i texted him saying that i am in the meeting, if u have important points, send them to me so i can raise them to mngmnt now as we speak. He replied hours later " thanx, u were enough"
i said " i felt u had something important that's why i asked"
he said " no problem, thanks anyway"
I guess he is trying to make feel guilty for not talking to him.
U know what Kate, i am tired of his games. I decided to turn the table on him. I am sick of being a victim waiting for his next move.
I will attack now. I will ruin his weekend using the same slick slight approach. I will not let him keep on provoking me every now and then.
What do u think?
Guide me plz.
Hi Mays,

You are exactly right, it sounds like he was trying to make you feel guilty for not doing what he wanted. However, his games are impossible because they leave you doing whatever he wants and you get nothing.

You did all you could to accommodate him with the comments and the meeting at work. He chose not to respond as you needed him to. So it is on him if he did not get to comment. You were more than kind to him about it. Try to see him as you would any other employee that did this to you. You would feel there was something wrong with them. That is the same reaction you can have with him too. Practice seeing him that way until it feels natural.

The best strategy in dealing with him is to ignore him. From what you have said, he seems to thrive on control and attention. He likes to manipulate until he has you upset and you do what he wants you to do. While it is very tempting to try to turn the tables on him, that is exactly what he is looking for. That shows he got to you, which is not what you want to let him know. So try to ignore him as much as you can. If you need to talk to him about work, that is unavoidable. But otherwise, pretend he is not there. Don't answer his calls immediately, don't acknowledge his presence unless it is inappropriate not to and stick to business only. If he tries to address you in a personal way, tell him that he is inappropriate and walk away. By doing that, you cut off his ability to get you to react and therefore you basically "starve" his need to control or get any satisfaction from you.

It is frustrating to not be able to get back at him. Dealing with someone who might have a personality disorder can trigger all your weaknesses and make you feel like someone just took advantage of you. It can also leave you feel vulnerable and angry. Try to work out your feelings in other ways that he cannot see. Write him a letter about your emotions while at home. This is not to send, but to allow you to express your feelings. Once you are done with it, burn it, tear it up or do something that makes you feel like you are letting go of the feelings. That can help and be very therapeutic.


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Thank you so much! :)
Customer: replied 4 years ago.
You r welcome :)
U r absolutely right about him loving control and attention.
Apparently this is what he wants. Maybe now he is expecting me to make a move.
If i don't, he will plot the next one which is better than me triggering it for him.
Having said that, it is eating me up from inside. Because I know that he plans his moves when he is in Yanbu where he is bored and needs some fun. But in the weekend, when he is with his family, he keeps silent and leaves me like this.
That's why I thought I should attack and ruin his plans and weekend. All I want to do is to send him a text with one work that will keep him thinking what is it that i mean, just like he does. Then ignore him for the rest of the week.
I know this sounds like i am dragged in his game. But I am furious.
I want revenge, i want to ruin his comfort and relaxed time. At the same time, I want my peace and dignity :(
Sorry, Kate but I am torn because of his behaviour.
I cannot deny it, he is getting to me.
I want to enjoy my weekend and I don't want him to enjoy his own.
What do u think?
It is understandable that you feel as you do. People who have personality disorders are by nature always trying to "get under your skin". They play games and do things in such a way as to provoke strong emotions and make you feel bad about yourself. If he does have a personality disorder, the only way he can do that is if you care about him. And while it is understandable that you still have feelings for him, it helps to work on distancing yourself from him so he no longer can use that connection to you to upset you.

It makes sense you want to ruin his weekend since he upset you with his behavior this week. However, rarely does someone like him feel upset by what others do. So if you do decide to send him the one text and try to upset him, he will probably only see it as evidence that he was able to upset you. Acting as he does with you only rewards him. He probably likes the drama he creates and you responding to him, even in a hostile way, is like approval to him.

The best way to deal with his behavior is to ignore him. To you and I, that does not sound like much. But to someone who may have a personality disorder, that is exacting what they do not want you to do. It cuts off their ability to get you upset and get a reaction out of you, which is their reward. And ignoring him will have the effect you are looking for- he will be upset and wonder why you are not reacting. He might not show it to anyone, but he will be thinking about it. And it will most likely bother him.

Instead, focus on getting peace and dignity back into your life. Work on distancing yourself from him as much as possible. And when you do find yourself thinking of him or getting upset about him, do something right away that makes you feel better. Exercise, a new haircut, time out doing something you love to do, etc. Whatever will boost your self esteem and put you back in touch with who you were before he came into your life. The best revenge in any situation is to be happy.

If you feel you cannot resist responding to him, you can try it. It may help you to see his reaction so you know what he will do. Then go from there. Most likely, he will come back next week ready to continue the same behavior. But at least then you will know and it will help you to continue working on ending the relationship as it is now.


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