Love Bombed!


I remember the first time I met him. He appeared in the office I was working in, and was introduced by a mutual co-worker.

I didn't know it at the time, but he had spotted me several days earlier. He had been walking from camp before the buses came in hopes of arranging a meeting while I was still at work. He had told me later he had said hello, or passed by me several times and I had completely ignored him. That definitely sounds like me.

Everything at the beginning happened pretty fast. He was a really attractive man, no doubt one of the best looking men I have ever laid eyes on. (its interesting, when I look at him now, I see no trace of that). He had the build that you see on the cover of men`s magazines. He was tall, and had thick dark hair, along with these huge beautiful eyes.

I wasn't looking for anything serious at the time. There were a couple reasons for this. One was I didn't see myself as someone anyone would want to get serious with, I truly didn't believe anyone would ever want a long term relationship with me, let alone marriage.

And two, I had a whole life plan laid out. I was only there to work for the summer, pile up some cash, then head back to university to continue on my life adventure. I wasn't getting much support from home, and I had often gone days without food during my first year of university. So this job was going to make my life at school a heck of a lot easier. As far as I was concerned, he was just a distraction to pass away the time until September.

Within the first three weeks I began staying with him 24/7. I slept at his house, on our days off we took off all over the province. He showed me his hometown, we went to Toronto, overall it was a blast. It was definitely a whirlwind romance. It was exciting to be swept up in the magical ride.

He was charming, fun and attentive. He took me for nice dinners and seemed to be the sweetest kindest man I ever met. I told him all my background, the issues and hardships I had experienced growing up in my family. He was fascinated by every part of my life, and sympathetic. I felt cared for, and supported. I felt I could trust him. He listened so intently, and remembered all the details I had told him. He reassured me about my experiences and seemed like he was on my side. Many of the details I shared with him at that time would come back to haunt me later.

Even with this there were things that would rule him out as a life partner for me. The major one being, he was a hardcore pothead. While he never did it in front of me, he smoked three times a day, first thing in the morning, at lunch and again at night. This was something I had told myself previously was a deal breaker. It was something that on no uncertain terms did I want in my life.

At some point during that summer, I noticed he seemed to be getting serious. I told him, not to get to serious, and I pointed to his drug use as a reason I would never get seriously involved with him. He told me at the time, he wanted to quit, and he would. As far as I know he did, and unfortunately, I ignored my own boundary and just let it slide. (this would end up becoming an issue years later).

I have never met a more romantic or thoughtful man than he was at the beginning. He took me out for dinner, we went on beautiful vacations. He was everything I could have hoped for, and more. It was a blur of romance and promise of a beautiful future. I was all to willing to set aside my own ambition when something so promising was right there in front of me. Here is someone who would look after, I would be safe, comfortable, loved for the rest of my life. Or so I thought.

Reflecting back, I actually saw the first red flag in the first month of dating. His birthday was coming up, so I had gone and bought him a shirt at a local clothing store. The next day, he took me to that same store to buy himself something. While we were there the male clerk who had served me the day before saw me and we exchanged greetings. I had thought nothing of it, my then boyfriend however, took note. As soon as we got out of the store he was grilling me, "who was that?" Of course, I couldn't really tell him how I had met the guy, as it was in the course of purchasing a birthday present. For the rest of the afternoon he was looking at me sideways and was grumpy. I didn't really think about it too much, I just shrugged and let it slide.

He had told me his ex-girlfriend cheated on him every time his back was turned. I figured he would get over that in time, and it was nothing to worry about. I had no idea how critical of an indicator this was. (Ladies, if a guy your dating does this RUN!!!!) Believe me, don't stick around to see if its just a misunderstanding. Don't second guess yourself, just GTFO. How I wish I had known this was not normal. It could have saved me a lot of agony and heartache.

Another red flag incident that happened within the first couple months was he told me in an oddly affectionate way that he knew I was sleeping with one of the welders on our job site. He said, he knew and it was ok, just don't let him see it. I was absolutely floored. First of all, the man in question was a scrawny little wrinkled up chain smoker nearing 50 when I was barely 21. There was no way I would EVER go near that guy. Second, I was exclusive and I was not a cheater. I had no idea how this idea got into his head. I was devastated. I couldn't believe he would think such a thing of me. Up until then, our relationship had been almost magical. In a second that all evaporated. I broke up with him on the spot, and fled his apartment in tears.

Unfortunately, I could not forget all the great times we had up until that point. His lovebombing had proved effective. I was hooked, and started the long never ending chase to get back what had been lost. I believed I had found a kind, loving, generous and beautiful man, and this was just a mild derailment. Unfortunately I went back, in search of those elusive glory days when I thought I had found a deep and long lasting love. How much I wish I could go back to that moment and just keep walking.

At first when I met him, he drove a nice vehicle, and he had a nice apartment. he seemed to have his life together. He seemed to be in control of his finances. At this time, I really didn't see the signs of things that would end up making my life miserable later. I thought I had hit the jackpot. This period didn't really last very long, at most it might of been about 6 months, but it was heady enough that was in to deep and I would spend most of my adult life trapped by this bait.

There were signs that I should have caught my attention. They were in the background but they were there. He didn't have a phone, cable or other basic things and he had a large stack of cash hidden in his apartment. He was negotiating child support with his ex, and he hid all his money so that he would qualify for legal aid. He pretended he had nothing for the court. I am not sure how he did it, or all the details, but it was definitely suspicious and if I had not been blinded by love I would have known to distance myself.

He had told me his ex was crazy, and that is why he didn't see his son. He said she had trapped him into a relationship by becoming pregnant, and he had not wanted to be a father. He claimed she secretly stopped taking birth control. But he felt once she was pregnant he had to do the right thing and stay with her. He said she harassed him non-stop and implied she was still obsessed with him. We needed to keep our relationship a secret or she would freak out and go after him for more support. He claimed she slept with half the town, and cheated on him with her current partner while he was at work. He told me she made his life a living hell, and he wanted an opportunity to be happy. According to him, it was the fault of his previous partner that he did have a relationship with his child. He made it all sound so tragic, such a poor broken soul. He claimed that she was so crazy that it made visiting his child impossible "When I left, I knew it was going to be either him or me, I chose me"

I will be honest, I believed him and I never believed a word she said, that would end up costing me dearly for many years. He had told me he didn't want me to talk to her because she would manipulate me. Perhaps it was, she would tell me the truth and I might leave him before I was too deeply entrenched.

I have never spoken to her very often, but when I did she honestly did not seem that crazy. She did say some things that were a little over the top and dramatic, and unfortunately that served to discredit her in my eyes. What she said to me sounded like genuine concern for her son. She wanted to talk to Ted to make arrangements for visitation. He stonewalled her. Many times over the years she would reach out to ask for help when her son was in trouble. Interestingly, I would end up in almost the identical situation years later when I would try and get him to work with me to help our son. I too was met with silence and accused of being a jealous and obsessed ex.

Unfortunately for me, those good times really did not last very long. And I would pay the price for ignoring those red flags for many, many years to come with my youth, my dreams and my life.

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