Sunday, October 4, 2009
As I read Ms. Stuart's words, I immediately connected with them. It's been nearly 8 months since my final "curtain call'' and I'm just beginning to reclaim my life. The emotional damage is so profound that very few people can understand. As I've said many times before, I hate to know that others have gone through that very painful experience of being deceived, devalued and discarded, but it helps to know that someone understands how it feels.
Monday, September 21, 2009
I'm fully aware that anything this man ever said to me was a complete and total lie. It was all a facade. I know that, now. But the feelings that I felt were real. The dreams I shared were real. And at the time, I thought his were real too. It honestly felt real to me. More real than anything I'd known. He even wrote that bullshit song for me. He cried while he sang it. How was I not to believe him? He said that being with me and my boys gave his life meaning. He finally had purpose, something he'd never had before. Those two statements I actually believe to be true. His life has no meaning...no purpose. That's why he leached onto mine. That's why he moved under my roof, ate my food and took advantage of my love and generosity.
Looking back, I realize that there were several red flags that I completely ignored. Originally, this post contained a list of some of them, but I removed them because I didn't want this to sound like an ex-bashing rant. I guess I was always aware of the flags, I watched them wave right in front of my face, but dismissed them to see where the relationship would go. I figured that since he had a secure job, a great driving record and didn't do drugs, he couldn't be all that bad; he at least deserved a chance. Those other things were just minor. He was my Mr. 80% (according to Dr. Phil's Love Smart). I could whip him right into shape in no time. Besides that, I was crazy about him. The problem with turning a blind eye to those red flags is that eventually they come back to haunt you. I'm sure that had I known more about pathological behavior prior to that relationship, it would have saved me from a world of hurt and an ocean of tears.
Saturday, August 22, 2009
Wednesday, August 19, 2009
Tuesday, August 18, 2009
Time helps, but it does not heal all things. For me, healing has been a long, exhausting process. I wish I could say I was there. I can say that I'm almost there.
I can't tell you how that process works, as it's different for everyone. I can tell you that it's absolutely necessary to have a support system. Your support will likely come from well-trained professionals (I was fortunate enough to find a therapist who was very knowledgeable on the subject), other survivors of pathological relationships and friends & family, though few people will genuinely understand the extent of your pain and anguish. Unfortunately, it's very likely that people won't believe you. The most valuable tool you can have is literature on the subject. Visit the library, search the Internet, read everything you can.
Grieving the loss of a Narcissist is very hard, there are many layers. Allow yourself to experience each stage of the grieving process...sometimes cycle through each stage several times, repeatedly.
Most Narcissists aren't diagnosed, because they either refuse to go to/continue therapy or because his charm and wit can fool even the keenest of psychologists (after all, he was able to fool you, right?). It's often the victims of narcissists who seek help. Fortunately, there is a wellspring of information available. Use it.
Saturday, August 15, 2009
Thursday, June 18, 2009
When he left, I was devastated. I believe I've mentioned that a few times. I can't begin to describe how brutally painful it was. For those who have been through it, I don't need to explain. It just didn't make any sense to me! It was like something inside of him just snapped. I had seen it happen with him before, but this time was different. Two days earlier, we were actually talking about how "normal" we were and how great that felt. "Normal" simply meant that he was still there. We had nearly made it through the entire winter without one of his episodes. How could I have known that two days later, he would be gone.
Almost immediately, I started reading everything I could find on mental illness. I had always suspected that he was bipolar, so that was where I began. I just couldn't understand how he could, all of the sudden, be so detached, so cold and distant. And why was he saying all these horrible things about me? When I found information about Narcissistic Personality Disorder, it was like a light bulb turned on inside my head. From that point, I wanted to know more. I discovered a plethora of websites, personal blogs, articles and books relating to the subject. I couldn't believe the number of people, usually women, who had been through frighteningly similar situations. Some women had been to hell and back trying desperately to make things work with their partners, only to wind up alone and confused.
I soon realized that nearly every romantic involvement I'd had since adolescence was with a narcissist, though not necessarily a disordered narcissist. Suddenly, everything made sense. I was conditioned to have this type of relationship because one of the most significant people in my early life, my paternal grandfather, was a disordered narcissist. I was my grandpa's main source of narcissistic supply....his mirror. This was what made me special. We were inseparable. He often had to be reminded that he had other grandchildren. I can still remember how it felt when he had found a new mirror. It wasn't long after my grandma died, he started spending time with a neighbor lady. All of the sudden, he disappeared from my life. I know it's hard for others to believe or comprehend, but I assure you, that's exactly how it happened. I was 13. Throughout my adult life, I looked for relationships that would give me that same feeling. I am told that no one else understands him, no one else ever loved him, no one else 'gets' him the way I do. And I really believe these things to be true.