This is going to be a long post. Be warned lol
I knew I was an empath since I was twelve. I was raised in a fundamentalist Christian community (borderline cultish) where my experiences would be considered "devilish," so I kept secrets and followed the expectations the church laid out for me. The church was essentially my family.
I married a man who was everything he was expected to be, but he was narcissistic. I didn't realize this because I was 18. He was 25. Empaths are naturally drawn to narcissists -- some of us don't know this. He was a fun energy most of the time, but he required a certain amount of attention and things to go his way. After we got married, this need for attention became abusive. I stuck with him, trying with all my heart for 11 years. We had 4 kids together. I sacrificed so much of myself that I lost most of myself. I was so drained all the time...drained, and then had negativity thrust on me almost every day. This drainage manifested into physical illnesses.
Stomach and intestinal ulcers turned into bleeding ulcers.
Heart palpitations and chest pain.
And so much more...
My blood eventually had the consistency of molasses and I was warned on two different occassions, 6 years apart, of the likelihood of a stroke. I had a "warning stroke" when I was around 21 or 22.
When I finally left him(somewhat recently), I tried to stay compassionate and respectful to his feelings, because as a narcissist in need of that attention and control, he had a hard time accepting that he was losing both. His own suppressed issues manifested to physical problems..but in a different way -- he turned dangerous.
Just as I thought my life was falling apart and that I had lost myself, I met someone online. I don't know how to explain what I felt. He left a review on amazon on something I wrote and his energy caught me. Nothing "special" or out of the ordinary was written, but that energy reached out to me. I hadn't even seen his face! So, I clicked his name and something about him drew me to him. It turned out we were a part of some of the same writing groups on Facebook, so I friended him. We didn't really say anything to each other for nearly a year. When we finally did start talking, he asked me, "do you feel some weird energy here?" It was crazy to me that he would be able to feel what I was feeling so we started talking on a deeper level. At this time, I was finally separated from my husband, but the situation was still dangerous for me. I was scared every day and having serious physical ailments coming from the anxiety.
This "new guy" was quite literally living on the entire other side of the continent so I didn't think we'd ever be able to meet in person. We did, however, have a crazy connection across the continent. He would have visions of what I was doing and how I felt. Typically at times when I was lonely or scared. We could sense when the other was holding our tongue on a topic we didn't think we could handle talking about, and we'd be able to push and support each other as we opened up about it. It was a connection I had fantasized of having with someone since I was a kid, but assumed it was only in stories.
We soon discovered what we had was coined "twin flames." Not soulmates -- twin flames. He is in almost every way the male version of me. We think the same, have had several almost identical experiences, the same goals and values in life, even the same parenting style.
When I had come to a point of pure powerlessness, I broke down and wept. I spoke -- out loud -- to the Universe/God in that moment, and I asked for help. I couldn't do it anymore and I wanted myself back. Within days, things started happening around me that set everything in place.
If I would have ever known this was possible to find in life, I would not have ever bothered with relationships and I would have prayed a lot sooner. Though if I had to, I would wait thirty years to find this man again. He does not drain me in any sense of the word, but instead, he fills me with positivity and hope. I enjoy every day, night, and the time in between. He's helped me rebuild myself from what I thought I lost through my marriage. I'm me again and I love life again.
Anyone who drains you is not good for you. Think seriously on your inner self -- will he continue draining you or will he fill you with life? Will you eventually drain until you have nothing of yourself left? Or will you be able to fill your own cup before he drains you again? Is that the life you feel you want to live?
Good luck! I hope it all works out for you!
Thanks so much for your very thoughtful reply! <3 That is incredibly amazing that you found someone you consider your twin flame!!! I don't hear about that every day (I'm hopelessly romantic so that concept appeals to me a lot!). Wow, I'm so glad you shared your story. Narcissists can be so disguised.. It's so sad to think of empaths stuck in that situation of marriage with them.... I can't handle that. But I think it's always great to be warned since love is vulnerable, and it can be naive as well as gullible <-- mine is no exception haha.
And thank you for your wishing me good luck! I do think it's cool how when our energy lifts so many more good things come into our lives, and all of the positivity from others along the way helps a ton, so it really means a lot.
(& there has been lots of improvement in my relationship now that I've gone on here and read yours as well as others' posts!)