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An Ex-Call Girl’s Experience of Relationships with Men – A Dangerous Attraction to Narcissists


WMTS recommends XLondon Call Girl’s blog.  She notes her actual life experiences and for those in the life in the UK, she has links where you can get help.


Submitted by XLondon Call Girl, UK

Written some months ago:

My boyfriend has just walked out. Before he left, he said, “Do you test me?” “No,” I replied, “I already know what you’re capable of.” I don’t know if I want to be with him or not.

I don’t know if I am capable of having a relationship with a man. A healthy relationship, that is. I know I am capable of a dysfunctional one. I’ve had many of those. It’s been over a decade since I worked as a call girl in London. In fact, it’s been thirteen years, but in all that time since, I’ve not had a healthy relationship with a man.

I don’t know if my opinion of men was formed from my feelings towards my father who was abusive when I was a child, or from the sexual abuse I suffered at the hands of men from eleven years old, or from the time I worked as a call girl for a few years in my early twenties. If I go back to a poem I wrote when I was thirteen, I can see that I already thought badly of men then. A line reads, “All the men I know have been cunts to me.” Maybe it began before then, but working as a call girl certainly cemented it. Being raped and being beaten would have ingrained it in me more.

So my boyfriend, he’s a recovering addict and a twelve step counselor. He thinks the answer lies in the twelve steps and nowhere else. I disagree. He would even deny this opinion of his, but I know it to be true of him. My post traumatic stress disorder affects our relationship. It affects all my relationships negatively, and most sadly it affects the relationship I have with my children. Has he done anything to research it? No. When I had a body memory flashback, what did he do? He shouted very loudly at me, told me to stop acting like child. He was angry with me, very angry. I forgave him, because he didn’t know any better, but months on, what has he done to understand me? Nothing.

He thinks I am an addict and that’s it. It is true, I am recovering from heroin and crack addiction and alcoholism. I got clean and that’s why I stopped working as a call girl. My NA sponsor told me I would relapse on drugs or drink if I carried on working.

I am also bipolar. That’s not easy to live with either.

I think the combination of my mental illnesses coupled with my negative experience of men is making it impossible for me to have a good relationship with a man. I seem drawn to men who cannot give me what I need. Or maybe I need too much. (Realization since I wrote this post – I am attracted to narcissistic men). Maybe my expectations are too high. (Another realization – No they are not, I deserve to be loved and respected and have been in relationships with women, but as I am drawn to narcissistic men, they are incapable of love). Now I seem to be settling for something that’s not good for me. I know my boyfriend loves me (in his own sick way), but it doesn’t feel like healthy love when he gets angry with me. He’s had his hands around my neck once when he threatened me, he’s grabbed hard at my arms when he’s shouted at me sometimes, and he regular shouts reducing me to tears, and once he went to rape me, but I managed to talk him out of it. I don’t believe he will do it again, but at the time, my distorted view of love was that if he did that, he must really love me.

Recently he hasn’t been too bad. He’s stopped shouting at me so much. I get a feeling, like being too upset over something he’s done that he feels I shouldn’t be upset with, or not that upset with, and he gets angry and shouts. I know I shouldn’t accept that.

The love I am used to hurts. On some unconscious level, I recognize the unhealthy, toxic, angry stuff and something in me says, “this is love.” That is because I recognize deep within my core that abuse is love – that is what an abusive childhood instilled somewhere deep within me and which I have trouble reasoning with to recognize the actual reality – that abuse does not equal love!

It’s not love when someone makes you feel bad. It’s not love when someone hurts you. But as I type this I am shaking my head at my words. “He does love me,” a voice says. But what do I love about him? That he is most likely as damaged as me. That he recognizes my anger, blame and shaming, and a voice in his head says, “this is love.” I think that’s it. We’re both from dysfunctional families, in which we suffered abuse. The honeymoon period was bliss but short lived. We’re left, or at least, I feel I’m left in something familiar. I don’t like it but I love him.

But what do I love about him? He’s not a paedophile. I trust him as far as that goes. I don’t trust him with other women though. An hour or so after we split up a couple of months ago, he was flirting with a woman via messaging on Facebook. He denied it but she told me the truth. He even discussed me with her and didn’t mention that I had been his partner for the previous six months. Then I found that he’d done the same with another woman as well.

I don’t even expect men to be faithful, that’s what working taught me. Maybe I even knew it before then. When I was young, I could have nearly any man I wanted, married or not. That showed me not to trust men. It also showed me that I may as well get paid for it. None of them cared about me, or their wives or girlfriends. It was all meaningless. It might as well benefit me financially, as emotionally and psychologically it was killing me.

Now when my boyfriend and I have a row, I expect he’s off to tell another woman about how her hot body is making his cock hard, like he did with the last one. It’s not even that he did it; it’s that he denied it and made me feel like it was in my head. That is psychological abuse, gaslighting. I can’t forget but maybe I can forgive. But should I put up with that? Is that okay? Is it normal? You see, I don’t know what’s okay and not in relationships. I know that I expect a man to be unfaithful, cheat, and lie, so part of me says, what choice do I have? He promises not to do it again, but I don’t believe him because I know, as if it’s fact, and it probably isn’t, but my fact is that all men do this anyway.

I get upset and angry at little things. That’s the PTSD, I think. The slightest thing he won’t do for me means he doesn’t love me. If he doesn’t want to have sex with me, it means he doesn’t love me. I should say that he is the first man since I lost my virginity at fifteen years old who I’ve had sex with and not had flashbacks with (apart from that one body memory). Eye movement therapy has really helped me with that. But he withholds love. He is passive aggressive.

So can two damaged people like us make our relationship work? That is what I am asking myself now. No one is perfect. He’s not perfect. But he says he loves me. He just said he’d hold my hand and walk through anything with me. He’d walk through fire with me. He’d go anywhere but not into the past. The past is where I usually find myself stuck though. So I think, yes he’d walk anywhere with me, holding my hand, and shouting at me. If I stay in the past, he won’t come with me. Maybe I’m safer there.

See my pattern is this: as soon as someone gets close to me, I pull away. I turn myself off them. I find things about them that I don’t like and then the way I see them changes. My relationships last a couple or a few months. That is a pattern that I want to break. I am not sure whether this is the right man to break it with though. Of course, that’s what I’d be saying right now because he’s got close to me, so I want to pull away. I want to find fault, and turn myself off him.

He’s not a complete psychopath like other ex-boyfriends have been. One threatened me with a dirty needle and another time threatened to petrol bomb my house. That time, my children and I had to move back in with my parents before the police installed a domestic violence alarm in my house. He hasn’t called me names and put me down like that man did. Actually that’s not true. He has put me down and he has psychologically abused me more than any other man. With the others their abuse was obvious, overt. His is covert, and he hides behind the facade that he is helping me as a counselor. He hasn’t lived off my income, and used me financially, like that man did. Although he is extremely tight with his money and always wants to go Dutch, whereas I would prefer he pay on one occasion and I pay on the next. He hasn’t threatened to have me killed or run over. No he hasn’t done that – But update: he did make various other threats, one of which is even too sick to mention, and the carnage of this relationship has sent me into a four month period of anxiety, bipolar and PTSD, leaving me barely able to leave the house, unable to look after my children, and unable to work and now I have most likely lost my job – I am still in this episode he has triggered.

So what is it I expect? I don’t even know. I just want to be happy. I don’t want a boyfriend who shouts at me and gets angry with me, who keeps threatening to leave me, who tells me to fuck off in an argument. Or maybe that’s normal – I don’t know. See I don’t know how healthy relationships work. XLondonCallGirl, you know darling, that’s not totally true. You had an amazing relationship with a woman once, who treated you like a princess. That’s what I want – what I had with her. I felt loved, cared for, the most important person in her life, I felt heard and understood. I didn’t feel wrong. I didn’t feel not good enough. I never thought once that she might be cheating on me. I never questioned what she told me; I knew with absolute certainty that anything she said was the truth. She never raised her voice at me. She never laid a finger on me to hurt me. She was never angry with me. One argument in six months was all we had, and that was completely my fault.

This boyfriend, he gets angry the minute I have a feeling that he doesn’t like. I’ve read about this kind of relationship with a man with certain personality traits. I understand that when I have a feeling he doesn’t like, he feels responsible in some way and that brings up shame in him, and that shame makes him get angry. I can have compassion for him. He is damaged from childhood abuse like me. I can understand, not excuse him. (Update: However, I don’t need to put up with it.)

He can’t understand me though. I think I need someone who can understand me. I am not like all other women, not that all other women are the same. Of course, they are not. But women who’ve worked as prostitutes are different. We’ve seen things and experienced things, lived through things and have in our heads and memories that most other women couldn’t imagine. I think I need someone who can understand my difference and have compassion and understanding for that and love me despite it and not hold it against me all the time and use it as a weapon in arguments – arguments I do not want to have.

As much as he’s no good at this relationship, I am probably just as bad. What chance is there for someone like me to ever be in a loving and healthy relationship?

Final Update: When this man came to see me the first time, he came round to have sex with me only. What 12 step counselor with nearly twenty years clean time, comes round to see a woman who was in recovery for nine years, then relapsed on painkillers and dope, to have sex with her? It’s like having sex with a patient. When he was on his way over, I rubbed my hands together, thinking how he was just as sick as me. And I was right. The following day, I walked my dog in the woods and made a very clear, definitive decision that he was not boyfriend material, as he was a sick man. I vowed not to get in a relationship with him. I saw him a couple more times, and then I was in love. The narcissistic attraction, which I was unaware of then.

The moral for me is learning to trust my gut instinct. He is now out of my life and has been for a number of months, but the carnage he has left behind is still present.

I’ve survived much worse than this, and I will recover. I have researched what kind of women are drawn to narcissistic men. Often women who have had a parent who has been a narcissist and often women with borderline personality disorder. As well as bipolar, PTSD and OCD, I have now been diagnosed with borderline.

I think the solution might lie in SLAA meetings and also perhaps, pursuing relationships with women instead of men.