Your safety is of the utmost importance when you’re dealing with a stalker, whether it’s your narcissistic ex or someone else. As I’ve been researching the subject, I’ve discovered a really cool concept called Stalker Sacks. These are physical bags of resources and tools that are given to victims in some states, and I think it’s an amazing idea.
The only problem is that a lot of people who are dealing with a stalker, even when it IS their ex, don’t know how to get the help they need, or they’re too embarrassed or afraid to ask someone. That’s why I’ve been covering it in more detail around here lately.
(An Aside) Have you been stalked before? What tips helped you? Are you currently being stalked? If so, what are you doing to stay safe? Please send me an email with the subject line “Stalker Tips” and let me know so that I can help other survivors by sharing your tips! I can share your name with your tip if you’re comfortable with it, but if you’re not, just let me know you’d prefer to have me publish the tip anonymous.
What Goes in Your DIY Stalker Sack?
In case you need to make your own Stalker Sack, here’s what kind of stuff you might want to put inside. The following list has been adapted from materials developed by the Alexandria, Virginia Domestic Violence Intervention Project and Virginians Against Domestic Violence.
Personal alarm: This small, portable alarm can be attached to windows or doors and will produce a loud noise if the window or door is opened. It also can be attached to a belt or scarf and will sound if the strap is pulled. (Note: if the personal alarm is too expensive, a whistle can be included in the sack.)
Plastic zip-lock bag and powder-free latex gloves: Victims can use these items to collect evidence, but only as a last resort, if it is clear that police will not come to the scene or that the evidence will be moved, damaged, or altered before the police arrive. Remember that collecting evidence is the job of law enforcement, and under most circumstances, victims should wait for the police to perform this task.
Audio recorder: If tape-recording without permission is legal in their state, victims can use tape recorders to tape any conversation with the stalker. Jurisdictions have different laws on what kind of recordings (e.g., in-person or phone discussions) can be used as evidence, and recording a person without his or her permission is illegal in some states. Check local laws before recording any conversations.
So, I got an email from a reader, and I’m sharing it with his permission. There’s a bit of confusion on whether or not he’s being cheated on by his wife – and if he’s NOT, it looks like he may be stalking her. I want my readers to know that the only reason I am answering this question is that the writer of the letter seems genuinely worried.
“David’s” letter reads:
“Angie – I love your videos and I just need a bit of help here. I don’t know why, but I am so, so anxious all the time. It’s all because of my wife! I don’t think she’s a narcissist, but my wife is so beautiful and seems overly friendly. She has a lot of friends both male and female and is really popular. But I am always scared she will leave me. So can you help me out? Why don’t I trust her? I feel a little weird telling you this, but every time she leaves home, I feel like I have to trail her. I’ve even skipped work so I can keep an eye on her without her knowing. I know it’s irrational but I just can’t help myself. She thinks we have the perfect relationship, but I’m always worried about what she’s doing when I can’t see her. Am I just paranoid or is she really doing something against our marriage? Is this going to cause me to lose her? I’m so scared and I don’t know what to do!”
Here’s my answer.
First, you have to know that your wife clearly doesn’t think you have the perfect relationship. Without knowing more about your situation, I can’t give you an answer on whether she’s actually doing something wrong here. With that being said, have you tried asking her? Maybe just a simple discussion would help you to ease your mind a bit. But if you’re truly worried, start here.
A Change in Appearance – If your wife has gone through a change in appearance, it could be a sign that she is cheating on you. What you will want to look for is small, but significant changes in appearance. For example, has she always worn glasses but has all of a sudden opted for contact lenses? Has your wife recently started showing more skin? Dressing provocatively is a common sign of cheating, especially if your wife typically dresses conservatively. Switching perfumes or wearing it more often can be another sign of cheating. This can be done to impress a new man or to cover up another man’s scent.
A Change in Affection – A change in the amount of affection that your wife gives you could be seen as a sign of having an affair. For example, has your love life been happy and healthy in the past? Was your relationship filled with fun, adventure, and great sex? If so, has that changed? If your wife no longer compliments you as she did before or does something as simple as pull away during a kiss, an affair may be going on. Many cheating women try to avoid close contact with their husbands in fear of getting caught or letting their guilt show.
Secrecy – A wife becoming more secretive can often point to an extramarital affair. For example, does your wife spend too much time on the phone or the internet? If so, what does she say when you ask her what she is doing? If you receive a “nothing,” or a “not your business,” response, something may be going on. In keeping with phone and internet use, does your wife automatically hang-up the phone whenever you walk into a room? Does she shut off the computer or try to block your view of it? If so, your wife’s secrecy may mean that she is trying to cover up an affair.
Changes in Bills – One of the simplest ways to catch a cheating wife is to start paying your bills. In some relationships, this is the woman’s responsibility, but make it yours, at least for a while. Examine your wife’s cell phone bills. Does it show what phone numbers are called or what numbers text messages and pictures are received from? Also, closely examine credit card bills. Are there expenses listed for hotel rooms, vacations, restaurants, or anything else that you have no idea about? If so, your wife may be cheating on you.
The signs mentioned here are just a few of the many that you will want to look for in a cheating wife. If you think that your wife is cheating on you, just be sure to keep your eyes and ears open. Unfortunately for the cheaters, they often make mistakes. Many women get so comfortable, that they slip up at one time or another. If you know what to look for, this is when you may be able to catch your wife cheating.
What if she’s really cheating? How do you deal?
If you do find out that your wife is cheating on you, you may want to carefully approach the subject. Never confront your wife in front of your children. No matter how angry you are, do not get violent and try to keep your voice at a reasonable level. As hard as it can be, calming approaching the situation can better allow you and your wife to have an honest discussion. Then you can decide what will happen you to and your relationship next.
What if she’s NOT really cheating?
It’s possible that this isn’t really anything she’s done but that it’s simply an insecurity issue. If that’s true, think about what may have triggered this insecurity you have, but if you can’t get things under control, talk to her honestly about what’s on your mind, and get back on track, then I suggest you get some professional help. Otherwise, you are on the path for emotional self-destruction.
Know this: a jealous husband makes life miserable for his wife. It’s a really toxic way to live. One client tells me that her ex would follow and stalk her constantly. He sat outside her workplace, called all her friends. He even questioned her boss one day.
In the long run, it destroyed their relationship and eventually destroyed him too. Today, they are divorced and she says she is barely holding it together. My advice for you, if you want to stay married, is to understand that this is your problem, not hers. Speak to someone you can trust. Tackle this now before it kills your marriage too.
If your wife hasn’t given you any reason for your behavior, you need to dig deep and figure out why you feel this way. If you DO have a legitimate reason to not trust her, perhaps you are in a toxic relationship and you need to consider moving on.
Another Possibility: Projection
This may be a delicate question, but are YOU doing something that your wife wouldn’t approve of? Are you cheating on her? I only ask because if that’s the case, it’s also possible that you’re projecting your own behavior on to her. It’s important to be honest with yourself in this situation.
How to Get Evidence For Prosecution When Your Narcissist Is Stalking or Breaking Into Your Home
According to the security consultants I’ve chatted with, home security cameras can provide a deterrent to break ins, while also providing important evidence in identifying convicting the stalkers when they are caught and tried. Others view home security cameras as giving them an option to see what is happening around their home without the need to personally venture outdoors. Depending on the system installed, they can also record and send images through a network connection to a security company monitoring the home’s security system.
When home security cameras first became available to the public, recording was done on videocassette recorders, with the more advanced ones capable of recording 24 hours through stop-action recording sequences. Playback was typically grainy and jumpy due to the method in which they were taken, playing back about every 5th or 6th frame. Today, home security cameras can be connected to digital video recorders, complete with sound and can be programmed to record only if there is movement.
Depending on the desired outcome of a video, the cameras can be hidden or prominently displayed to let people know they are being recorded. Some laws provide guidelines to the placement of cameras in public places, however, most home camera installations can be done without restriction. Placing home security cameras in bathrooms or in other places where other residents of the home expect a large degree of privacy may invite angry responses from family members and guests in the home.
Hidden cameras can be used to identify others causing problems in a home and on the other side, home security cameras that are installed in plain sight, but unreachable to invite damage or disabling, may serve as a deterrent to crime as the stalker wants to stay out of the limelight. Most security companies advocate having visible cameras on the perimeter of a person’s home and hidden cameras inside as a way of deterring break-ins and for prosecuting those who ignore the initial warning.
When deciding to use home security cameras, it is always best to get the advice of a security expert to make sure their placement will best serve the needs of the homeowner.
If you’re dealing with a toxic ex, chances are you’ve got enough anxiety already. And if you can’t afford a traditional home security system, you may be constantly stressing about your safety. This is not good for your physical or mental health. But there’s good news – traditional systems are no longer your only option.
How can you protect yourself when you’re being stalked by a narcissist?
You need to know some things about narcissism and narcissists before you can really protect yourself effectively. That’s because the majority of stalkers and narcissistic abusers don’t fall into the typical category of who you think they might be. You’ll probably be surprised when I tell you who the most typical stalker and abuser is.
Should you get a home security service or just use a do-it-yourself home security system? Protecting your house doesn’t have to be complicated, but you will have to decide between a do-it-yourself home security system versus a home security service. Both are viable options that can keep your valuables away from thieves – but how do you know which one is right for you? Let’s take a look at what’s involved with each type of system.
Setting Up a DIY Home Security System
DIY at-home security systems and even more sophisticated police-connected alarm systems are no longer so confusing to install that only a professional can figure them out. What are your options for a home security system to protect you?
Wireless or hard-wired?
Wireless home security systems are now one of the top, most installed systems in homes today. If you decide that you want to go with the hard wiring, unless you’re an electrician or have successfully installed a system into a home before, then you want to pay to have the installation done. The reason for this is because the potential to mess up your home’s wiring is there and you can cause all kinds of additional problems (and incur wiring repair expenses) that you don’t want.
Monitoring services can protect your home – but even a monitoring service is not theft-proof. Because of the cost of a professionally installed and monitored system, many homeowners are now choosing to take care of their home’s protection themselves.
How do you get the supplies you need to build your own home security system?
Getting the necessary supplies is as easy as ordering the systems online and having them delivered. One of the main perks is that you’re going to save on the equipment and also the cost of paying for a professional installer’s time to set up the system.
Setting one up is as easy as being able to read – if you can read the directions, you can accurately put in the system. There is one challenge with the do-it-yourself home security system versus home security service, and that is the wiring.
The good news is that if you do decide you want to install your home’s system, you can easily order a system that’s ready to go right out of the box. Plus, you don’t have to buy any extras unless you want more sensors than what came with your package.
This type of system is affordable on any budget and you can add features to your security system as time goes by, rather than having to come up with the entire cost all at once. When you buy a professionally installed system and opt to go with a service, you’re going to pay a lot. Plus, you’re going to get locked into a contract and then have to pay the company to keep an eye on your system so they can call if there’s a problem.
What if the stalker cuts your phone wires, rending your security system useless?
In the battle of do-it-yourself home security system versus home security service, what many users don’t know upfront is that the hard-wiring can be thwarted by a savvy criminal if he cuts the phone line.
This can deaden your system and render it useless. Having someone watch your system and call if the alarm sounds a warning can be effective if the authorities are notified in an expedient manner. Talk to your nearest neighbors and ask them to reach out to you (or the police, if clearly appropriate) if they see anyone resembling the stalker around your home or even the neighborhood.
A hidden camera in a computer speaker. As with the above-mentioned air purifier, these speakers are fully functioning. If you want to spy on your spouse, whom you suspect may be using the internet to cheat on you, there is no better way to get to the bottom of things. Point the speakers towards the computer screen and you get all the proof you need! Since these speakers work, the computer user will be none the wiser. You can also use these speakers to point to any direction in a room.
A hidden camera in a clock. These clocks come in a number of different formats. Most are desktop, which allow you to maneuver to get the best view. To not raise suspicions, a digital alarm clock is best. These clocks are also fully functioning. The person you are spying on can use the clock, the alarm, listen to the radio, and so forth. Fully functioning means little suspicion is aroused.
A hidden camera in a pen. Not only can you buy pens with hidden video recorders inside, but digital cameras, audio recorders and more. In fact, you may be surprised what a small pen can do. Some allow for invisible writing, which can only be read with the pen’s light. Other pens have lights that allow for nighttime rummaging or writing in the dark. Some devices even come with small attachable scopes for long-distance viewing. Your options are unlimited when using a spy pen. Since pens are items we use every day, no one will think twice about seeing one.
As you can see, hidden cameras are found in a wide range of items. These are just a few of the ways narcissists can spy on you. Please be careful and check everywhere if you feel like you are being watched. They even have night vision cameras available these days and don’t forget about nanny cams.
Due to what I see as a serious issue, I’ve created a new set of resources for you. As you may or may not be aware, many toxic relationships end in stalking. In fact, many survivors of narcissistic abuse are stalked during the relationship and after as well. And sometimes, stalkers may randomly choose you, or stalk you without having been in any sort of relationship (that you’re aware of, anyway).