April 12, 2017
Stephen has been married to Karla for 38 years and says the two have a “contentious” and “strained” relationship.
“I’m an emotional abuser,” admits Stephen. “I have played games and lied about many things to my wife, all the while thinking I was being a good husband.”
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Karla claims Stephen has lied to and manipulated her throughout their entire marriage, usually so subtly that she thought she was the problem – a phenomenon known as gaslighting. She claims that Steven is a narcissist who hides his controlling behavior behind a mask, pretending he’s acting out of love.
“Steve is a confusing husband. On the one hand, treats me like I’m his princess. I can count on him for everything. As long as that has absolutely nothing to do with emotions,” Karla says.
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Karla says her husband has three distinct personalities: One is the super nice guy who will do anything for anybody; the second is an ice-cold emotionless robot, and the third is a game-playing pathological liar.
“I can’t trust anything Steve says because everything he says his based on his version of reality,” Karla says. “He lives in a world of make-believe, and I don’t live in that world and don’t want to.”
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“I’m very superficial. I don’t really want to get heavily involved emotionally with anybody,” Stephen admits. “I pretend to care. I pretend to listen. The reality is my brain will go somewhere else.”
In the video above, hear more of their story, including why Karla says she took her wedding ring off 17 years ago and hasn’t put it back on, and why she calls Stephen a psychological abuser. On Wednesday’s episode of Dr. Phil, hear about Stephen’s claims of memory loss and how that has affected their relationship. Check here to see where you can watch.
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