Dan and I recently discovered “How I met your mother” on netflix. We’ve been watching it for a month or two and we’re into the last season (season seven, I think?) available on netflix. I like it. It’s funny and as always, Alyson Hannigan is great… Last night, the episode we watched, “White Lies, Black Dads” sucked. It wasn’t poorly written. It was funny. It didn’t fall short of expectations by any means… but the subject matter was just a little too close to home for me.
Barney and James find a picture of themselves in an envelope addressed to Sam Gibbs. On the back of the picture, their mother had written “Your son,” but she hadn’t indicated whose father the picture was for, James’ or Barney’s. The two show up on Sam Gibb’s door step and a black man answers the door, quite obviously James’ father (since James is black too). After the door is opened, there’s a moment of silence and I could feel my heart breaking, watching Barney’s reaction. Of course, the writer’s rescued the comedy of the show… but those brief moments of silence are devastating.
Just sitting there, watching the show… Those few seconds lasted for ever and all of a sudden, I felt my heart breaking all over again, knowing exactly how it feels to be in that position. Not knowing where you come from. Desperately longing to know, to see, to learn… but despite your desperate pleas and sorry attempts at pretending you’re fine… You’re really not. Deep down it kills you in a way nothing else has and nothing else ever will. It’s a hole in your heart that can’t be filled except by knowing… and you live in fear, every day, that you will never know and that hole will always be empty. Every day is the same… and then it isn’t. One day you wake up, expecting a normal day, only to catch a glimpse of hope, thinking maybe you found him, maybe today is the day, maybe you’ll finally know… and you wait on that figuritive doorstep. You stand there with your heart in your throat for weeks, waiting for test results, hoping your journey is over, fearful that it isn’t and terrified of what will happen if this isn’t it. You try to keep yourself from being too hopeful, but it’s impossible. You can’t stop yourself and it only makes the pain that much worse when you discover you’re at the wrong door and all of this was for nothing.
The door opened for Barney, but it was the wrong door. Instead of slipping off to a valium-induced level of calm, Barney did what I have done time and time again: pretended it wasn’t true. This had to be his dad. It couldn’t be anyone else. He couldn’t keep looking, this just had to be it. He pretended he was done searching. He pretended he found his answer. Deep down, he knows he didn’t, just like I know I didn’t all of the times I pretended I didn’t know, or prayed that someone would take pity on me and forge the results of my DNA tests. Deep down he knew… but it hurts too much to admit.
At the end of the episode, the narrator said something hit me like a knife to the heart “Kids, your uncle Barney grew up without a dad and he always felt incomplete because of it.”
Unfortunately, I didn’t have a mother like Barney did. There is no happy ending or substitute. I’ll always be incomplete. Irreversibly and permanently.
And there’s nothing I can do about it.
I was a very empathetic person. I was probably too empathetic. I would become emotionally distressed, just imagining how someone else feels over something. I was constantly worried and anxious about hurting someone’s feelings, or causing them any pain. It ruled a great deal of my time and of my life. I could not stop worrying about what other people would think or feel over even the smallest of things.
I just didn’t want to hurt anyone.
When I was little, my mom went through this phase where she was trying all sorts of new recipes. My mom was pretty depressed, and even though I was still pretty young, still in grade school, I could tell. I could always tell when my mom was depressed. Her personality would completely change; so drastically, that she wasn’t even the same person. And like I said, I was a very empathetic person. It caused me severe emotional distress just imagining how terrible my mother must have felt to be acting the way she was. Anyway, she was trying all of these new dinner recipes. I’m not sure why she was experimenting so much, but she was. Maybe she needing something to occupy her thoughts or give her something to do. Maybe she just wanted to feel appreciated. I don’t know, and I probably never will.
While on her culinary experimentation spree, she made this creamy Italian pasta. I’m sure someone who likes Italian food or white sauce pasta dishes would like it, but I didn’t. She was so excited about it, and she seemed so anxious for everyone to try it and tell her what they thought. She looked like a little kid who had slaved over a gift for her parents, meticulously working on it, making it as perfect as she could, all in hopes that they’ll just love it. And there she was, just standing there, waiting desperately, her eyes pleading for approval.
My sisters took a bite and told her it was gross. Rebekah started throwing a fit about the mushrooms in the pasta. My mother looked crushed. I took a bite, and I told her it was amazing, even though I didn’t like it. I didn’t like it all. I didn’t like it at all, but she looked so crushed when my sisters were so mean and I felt bad for her. She had been working in the kitchen for hours, slaving over the stove, anxious for her family to try this new dish. And they criticized her. They crushed her enthusiasm and broke her heart.
So I lied.
I told her I loved it. At the time, I didn’t think it was a big deal, just a little white lie to make her feel better. She just looked so hurt and I felt bad that my sisters had been so cruel saying the things they did about the meal. As soon as I told my mother I loved it, she perked up, looking happy and proud of herself, like a little kid, beaming about her accomplishment, too proud of herself for words.
It was just a little white lie. What could it hurt?
My mom thought I liked it, and started making it a lot, always serving me a heaping bowl of it, looking excited and happy to give it to me, sometimes she even told me she had made it just because she knew how much I loved it. I just forced a smile and made myself eat it. She was always in such a good mood whenever she made it, and I didn’t want to hurt her. For years, I just kept up with the charade, gagging down every bite of it and occasionally telling my mother, “That was good. I want more, but I am just so full, I’d explode if I took another bite.
Then, in 2004 I moved to Alaska with my grandparents. Time went by and I forgot about the creamy Italian pasta facade. Then, in 2006, my mother moved to Alaska, near me. For my birthday, she made dinner, remembering that the creamy Italian pasta was my “favorite.” She was so excited, and frankly, I was surprised she had remembered my “favorite” food, since we hadn’t seen each other in a couple years. Thinking back to the night she first made the pasta, and how sad she was, I did what I always did; I forced a smile and pretended to love it. Then after dinner, my mother gave me a book to write all of my favorite recipes in. She had already written the recipe for the creamy Italian pasta in it.
It can be easy to overlook how someone else is feeling, but it’s important to remember that the things we do and say, even when we don’t want to, can mean the world to someone.
We have all dealt with it, whether we want to admit it or not.
You know what I’m talking about. That guilty, worried feeling you get when you’re trying to de-clutter and clean up and you debate whether or not to get rid of something that someone (doesn’t matter who) gave to you (doesn’t matter when) for whatever reason. You don’t want to seem rude or ungrateful, but you just don’t need whatever it is. Perhaps you don’t even use it. Maybe it’s been sitting on a shelf or in the back of a closet for the last six months just taking up space. Or even worse, perhaps it’s getting in the way or making things difficult for you.
You know you want to get rid of it, but you can’t help but feel guilty, after all, someone spent their time, energy and probably their money on. Even if you know you’re not using it and you know you likely won’t ever use it, you still feel guilty. And as if you didn’t feel guilty enough, this guilt is for many people, intensified by the gift-giver’s upset with your decision to get rid of something they gave you.
“You got rid of it? What?! But I gave that to you!”
We’ve all heard it, and most likely, we’ve all felt like shit for it at one point or another. Nothing makes you feel more guilty after giving something away than being accosted by the gift giver with shocked, angry and upset exclamations. If your gift-giver is especially dramatic, expect to feel ten times worse than you would have otherwise.
I used to struggle with giveaway guilt a lot. I was, in my opinion, a pretty empathetic person, sometimes too empathetic. I remember being constantly worried about what everyone else might think or feel all the time. It was consuming. I was constantly worrying about these things and the only one who suffered for it was me.
I can’t deal with clutter and junk. I begin to feel very disorganized and quite frankly, distressed, when my living area isn’t neat or organized. It has a severe emotional toll on me. I get depressed and I stop getting things done as quickly as I should. I have seen a noticeable difference in myself between an organized and a cluttered living space. Clutter and junk is stressful. Even if you aren’t tripping over it in the middle of the floor, it’s stressful and can affect your mood. For me, it has a huge influence and because of that, I don’t hold on to things for very long, including things I was given.
I appreciate the things people give me with good intentions. I really do and I would never get rid of a gift I received the next day or be blatantly obvious about it. But if I don’t use something, it’s in my way or it’s just collecting dust then I’m better off without it. If I get rid of something you gave me, it doesn’t mean I hate you or don’t appreciate you. It just means that I needed to purge my life of excess to stabilize my feelings and emotions. A gift is just a thing. It’s the thought that counts, right?
Even if I don’t keep the gift you gave me, I still remember that you thought enough of me to give it to me in the first place, and that is what should matter. Don’t take it as a personal attack or an insult. Just realize that this is what I need to do to keep my life streamlined, and stop myself from getting overwhelmed. And if someone else gets rid of a gift you gave them, their reasons are probably similar.
Imagine someone gave you a giant coat stand. You are living in a small home. Every time you go from the living room to the stairs or the bedroom, you trip over this coat rack. You try moving it, or even rearranging the other furniture around it, but still, you keep tripping over this coat rack. After a while, you begin to get irritated with this coat stand. Every time you see it, you get annoyed, and by now, you’ve tripped over it so many times that it’s scuffed up, knicked and damaged. It’s a sore sight, for sure. But still, you keep it. After all, it was a gift and you wouldn’t want to hurt the giver’s feelings; you care about them. So for months, you continue tripping over this stupid coat stand, over and over, perhaps even injuring yourself a few times. You’re stressed out about it. You hate that it’s in your living room. You hate tripping over the stupid thing, and you don’t even like the design, but still, you don’t want to hurt the giver’s feelings.
You shouldn’t punish yourself for the sake of sparing someone’s feelings.
But if the giver cared about you, which they likely do, since they cared enough to give you a gift they thought you would like, do you think they would want you to feel the way you do about the coat rack? If they care about you, they wouldn’t want you stressing out, feeling anxious, frustrated or upset, especially by a silly coat rack. If you don’t like it, don’t use it, don’t need it, or it’s in the way, get rid of it. Of course, it’s best to do so tactfully to spare feelings if you can. “Oh, the coat rack? We used it for a little bit, but a friend of mine was recently divorced and moved into an apartment with absolutely no furniture. We have the closet in the entryway, and I knew she could use it more than we could.” Of course, there might not always be a tactful way to explain something missing, but you can always be honest. If the giver is upset with you, they shouldn’t be, and if they are, that is their issue to deal with. Not yours. Don’t let your decisions and life be ruled by the fear that you may upset someone else.
Sometimes I wish I was stupid.
Maybe not stupid, but less smart. I always feel like I’d be happier if I wasn’t as smart as I am. If I wasn’t smart, I feel I’d be content with the status quo. I’d be happy with things the way they are and small successes along the way. Maybe I wouldn’t have such overwhelming goals; goals I always feel are caving in on me. I know I can meet them, but the process of getting there is so difficult and so long. Perhaps, if I was a little more dumb, I could hold myself to a lower standard and be content with it.
I’m not brilliant or a genius, but I’m smart enough to see my potential. I’m smart enough to recognize how my actions (or lack of) impact that potential. I’m smart enough that I can see the difference between my life if I remain stagnant or take action. I’m smart enough that I know what needs to be done and what I have to do.
I’m smart enough to know better.
Which is why I continue on the way I do. I want to do the things I’m doing. Even if they wear me to the bone, I want to do them. I have to do them. I can’t just “take a break” or “cut myself some slack.” My brain doesn’t work that way. My world doesn’t work that way. If I take a break, I’ll give up. If I take a break, I’ll fail, and anything short of making it is unacceptable. It doesn’t work and it can’t work. If I fail, then I’m just like everyone I strive so hard to set myself apart from. If I give up, I’m just another deadbeat loser. And that, for me, would be unbearable.
I’m not just another teen mom.
I always get the question, “How do you do it all?” and honestly, I don’t know the answer. There isn’t an answer. I don’t know how I do it. I just do. I know I have to, so I do. I stress out like you wouldn’t believe, but the stress is worth the achievment. Nothing comes easy, and this life is no exception. If it wasn’t stressful, everyone would do it. If it wasn’t stressful, it wouldn’t be a big deal. If it wasn’t stressful, it wouldn’t be worth being proud of. If it wasn’t stressful, anyone could handle it.
But I’m not just anyone.
People are likely to read this and think that I ought not worry about what other people think about me or what they say about me, but this isn’t about them. I’m not worried about their standards, or what they think of me. Their opinions don’t matter to me and likely never will. These are my own standards that are locking me in. It’s harder to cut yourself slack when you’re the one holding yourself to such high standards. Even though it’s stressful, and chaotic…
I wouldn’t have it any other way.
We’re quiet on the ride, we’re all just waiting to get home.
Over the course of this summer, I’ve been through more chaos, more insanity, more hurt, more despair, and just more than I could ever begin to put into words. I saw a woman’s entire lifetime of mistakes shatter to the floor like a crystal chandelier that’s been dangling precariously over a make-believe tea party for the last four decades. I watched as she scrambled to glue it back together, trying to pretend that no one saw, that the show must go on. Every time time the cieling started to collapse, and little flecks of paint begin to fall… We all saw it. I know we did. But we turned a blind eye; doubted our own recollections, and let others manipulate our memories. I sat there, at that table, for twenty years, so deluded with the lies that I was fed, that I never thought twice. This was how it was. This was as “real” of a life as I had ever known. That is, until a shard of glass sparkled on the floor and it all came crashing down beyond repair. And now? There is no make-believe.
Every chance to leave is another chance I should have took.
I was covered in lies before I even took my first breath. As I grew, even more lies were planted… Little seeds that I didn’t know different from. It isn’t easy to break free from that. A lot of people don’t. These things have a way of making you doubt your sanity; wondering if perhaps, you’re the one who’s lost it. A healthy person is taught to rid themselves of the negative, but when you’ve known nothing but the negative, you don’t always recognize it. When you do, everyone around you does their best to smother the thought and turn the blame to you.
You live life like everyone’s an enemy.
Relationships are complicated. Family dynamics are intense. There is no simple solution and there’s simply too much background, in anyone’s story, to put all of the pieces together in a way that makes snese. No matter how you weigh the options, you will always hurt someone, even if that isn’t your intention. It isn’t just you. It isn’t just them. It is everyone. And there is no solution that leaves everyone unscathed. You risk upsetting the others involved, or you sacrifice yourself. It took me a long time to figure that out. Despite the guilty feelings, I can’t let my myself go for the sake of the story.
I don’t ever want to be here.
Alice jumped down the rabbit hole and fell through the looking glass a long time ago. The looking glass is cracked and covered in dust and the garden is nothing but withered, dead thorns. I might not have seen it before. Perhaps I’m guilty of turning a blind eye one too many times, but there comes a point where there is only one of two options; perpetuate the sickness and continue the cycle, or start over, completely new.
I thought this wouldn’t hurt a lot
I guess not
I don’t know of any significant, life-alter decision that anyone has made that was easy. Some of the hardest decisions a person has to make are the most painful. Sometimes, doing what’s right for you isn’t easy. In fact, it can feel impossible. I don’t know that I have ever felt so guilty in my life, but slowly, that guilt transforms into relief, and relief into confidence; confidence that you did the right thing and your life is now better for it.
And after a week of fighting, as more and more it seems the right thing.
I may not have found resolution to the story I was thrown into, but the antagonists have been written out of the script. Finally, a sense of peace. A feeling of normalcy. I may never find solutions, but at least I’m not finding problems.
Come take my pulse, the pace is on a runaway train.
Sometimes, you can’t explain it. Life seems impossible. It feels like nothing is going right, but for some reason, you’re okay. You’re optimistic. Breaking free is almost liberating. Independence is freeing. That kind of realization is almost intoxicating.
Help, I’m alive. My heart keeps beating like a hammer.
Living isn’t ready and there isn’t a guide. There isn’t a manual. We’re here. By whatever freakish accident that brought us here, we’re here and all we can do is make the best of what we have to work with. There’s those that cheer you on, and those that can’t wait for you to fall.
If I stumble, they’re gonna eat me alive.
This is a beginning of a new chapter. And I can’t wait.
“They say an end can be a start
Feels like I’ve been buried yet I’m still alive
It’s like a bad day that never ends
I feel the chaos around me
A thing I don’t try to deny
I’d better learn to accept that
There are things in my life that I can’t control..
The stormy days ain’t over
I’ve tried and lost know I think that I pay the cost
Now I’ve watched all my castles fall
They were made of dust, after all
Someday all this mess will make me laugh
I can’t wait, I can’t wait, I can’t wait…”
Isn’t it weird how you find yourself liking a song… A song that has no particular personal meaning to you and then all of a sudden, seemingly out of nowhere, it applies to you. It feels like it was written just for you. Its as if someone stepped into your life and just watched, and waited. They went back in time, composed their lyrical masterpiece based on their observations, and then, somehow, the cosmos made sure you heard it. It caught on. It found a corner in the back of your mind. It sat there, in that little corner, and waited. And waited. And waited a little bit more. It collected dust, waiting until the moment you’d need it because someone or something out there knew that one day, you’d need it.
And there it is.
Right when you needed a word of encouragement. Something to remind you to persevere. That not all decisions are easy ones, but in the end, they’ll pay off. And then, its like that cosmic force has struck once again, reminding you what you can’t go back to. Like foreshadowing in a book, or deja vu. You know what you need to do, but the reality of those decisions can be hard to swallow, especially if you’re looking through the wrong pair of glasses. There’s those words that were hiding in the corner, just behind the other ones, waiting to remind you… Waiting to stop you in your tracks and prevent you from making another mistake.
“New slang when you notice the stripes, the dirt in your fries.
Hope it’s right when you die, old and bony.
Dawn breaks like a bull through the hall,
Never should have called
But my head’s to the wall and I’m lonely.”
Its not easy to forgive, but its nearly impossible to forget. We are largely the product, of what we were taught. What was modeled to us. How we were treated. How we were interacted with. The neuron networks were growing and spreading, every single one recording an emotion, a response, a feeling, a thought, a hope, a fear and before we could even talk, there we were. A person. A unique individual, resulting from presence of abc and the abscence of xyz. We are that person, whether we like it or not, until we’re capable of the conscious decision to rise above how we were wired, conditioned and trained. Some people reach that point, and some never do. The decision to do it, isn’t always without consequence.
“A baby is born
Crying out for attention
The memories fade
Like looking through a fogged mirror
Decision to decisions are made and not bought
But I thought this wouldn’t hurt a lot
I guess not“
There’s never nothing left to do. There’s just nothing left that you want to do, which can be just as hard. We’re all faced with choices we don’t want to make, but we do it anyway. Not only for ourselves, or for those around us, but because we know its for the best. Despite how hard those choices are for others, as well as ourselves, to acknowledge and accept.
I spent the last two hours dancing with Ava.
It started like any other one of her who-knows-how-many-hours-long-screaming-sessions… She was starting to get worked up. She was tightening, shrieking, turning red, screaming so loud her voice would disappear mid-scream… Lately, when she goes into this fits, I feel all sorts of things. I feel so much negativity when she starts these fits… So much that sometimes I feel like I can’t think. Sometimes I step out on the porch, just for a reprieve from the ear-splitting screams.
Dread. Fear. Anger. Frustration. Helplessness.
But this time, I just looked at her. I had set her down, feeling the tenseness creeping up into my own arms. The tenseness resulting from frustration. The kind of frustration that makes you want to scream. So I had set her down in a blanket, but this time, I just looked at her. Her little face was cherry red, crocodile tears spilling out of each eye, her hands shaking, her fingers grasping, reaching for who-knows-what. Her heart was broken, her world was ending, she was alone, and worst of all, she didn’t know why she felt the way she did. All she knew, was that those feelings were there and there was nothing she could do to stop them. And then I realized…
She’s just like me.
Her heart is broken and she doesn’t know why. She knows what she needs, but she doesn’t know how to ask for it, and she can’t put a name to it. Even though there’s someone right there she feels alone. Utterly and terribly alone. If she can’t see me, even for a split second, that aloneness turns into abandonment and desolation. Her heart is breaking and her body is reacting. She can’t help the tears. What started as something small, maybe even something minute and now obsolete, has now escalated into hopelessness and despair. That feeling is so overwhelming, so gut-wrenching, so awful, she shakes and sobs and cries out of desperation, out of longing for something, and finally out of defeat.
We’re feeling the same things. Though, we’re feeling those things for different reasons I’m sure, those deep, rooted emotions, and the literal feeling those emotions provoke… They are one in the same. She cries out, hoping for someone to save her, someone to rescue her from the overwhelming emotional turmoil, someone to help her. For her, there’s hope. For her, she believes and hopes that someone is there for her. Someone loves her and cares and will make it all better. I’ve been conditioned not to. When I cried out, I was often met with hostility, contempt, ridicule and amusement. Crying out was the Achille’s heel; nothing more than exposing my weakest point, offering myself up for humiliation and degradation.
It was at this moment, seeing her like this, that I realized how alike the two of us are. It was at this moment, seeing her in this light, seeing myself in this light, that I realize how damaging the way I was treated was to my future relationships. I realize how that treatment has affected me even now. I see how much it hurts, and I see how easy of a cycle it could be to continue.
I will never let her feel that way on my account. Regardless of why the pain is there, pain is pain, emotional, mental, physicial. She won’t be forced to internalize it out of fear of what I’ll say or do. She won’t be ridiculed and mocked for her sadness, her fear, her longing, her upset…
I just want her to have a better life than me.
So I picked her up. I held her close, and the two of us dance. We danced. I rubbed her hair, put my cheek to hers, and sung softly in her ear. I was there for her, and that won’t ever change. I held her like that for nearly two hours. My homework could wait. The cleaning could wait. Sleeping could wait. She needed me, and I wasn’t going to let her down.
Just her and I.
Honey and the moon.
I’m feeling a lot better now.
I spent quite a bit of time reading over narcissistic personality disorder… A lot of time… Not just articles… Psychology texts… Books written by professionals… Everything I could get my hands on… And it describes everything I have endured with her to a T. A narcissistic is, by themselves, difficult to handle. A narcissistic mother, is impossible. And it seems that the experts all agree on one thing. The only way to deal with a narcissist is to not. Cut them out, be done and move on, because they won’t change. They guise the manipulation as concern. They mask the attacks as indifference. And if all else fails, they resort to self-pity and helpless victimhood.
I know, I’ve quoted this article before, mostly in passing, but the more I read and the more I learn, the more I begin to see how blatantly obvious it should have been… But that’s the amazing thing about narcissists. They’re so skilled, thought out, and quick, that they leave others in disbelief that they could ever be anything less than splendid.
“Narcisstic mothers do not have children for the same reasons the rest of us do…. They have children so that the children will love them unconditionally, not the other way around. They have children to do things for them. They have children to reflect their false images. They have children to use, abuse and control them….For the narcissistic mother, each step away from her is an absolute act of betrayal….they train their children to believe that they are the ideal mother. Any evidence to the contrary is to be kept secret at all costs. They will behave much differently toward their children in public than they do at home…. Narcissistic mothers don’t stop being narcissists when their children become adults….These mothers steal their kids’ childhoods, identities and future healthy relationships. They will keep on taking and sucking the life out of their children for as long as they live, if their children allow it.“
No matter how many times I have read that single post over the last few years… It always hits me and hits me hard. Sometimes its eye-opening. Sometimes its nauseating. Sometimes its comforting. Knowing that this isn’t my fault.
In a family with a narcissistic mother, there’s a few crucial roles, and different members of the family play out different roles. There is, of course, the narcisstic, dominating all of the family dynamics and functions. Then, of the children, there are usually two different “types.” Sometimes there’s more than one child that fits the label, but there’s the “golden child” and the scapegoat. The scapegoat and the golden child are nearly identical. They both have that fear of the narcissist mother. They’ve both been trained. They both know the consequences of displeasing the narcissistic mother. The difference between the two however, is that the golden child will do whatever it takes to please the narcissist, even if means sacrificing his or her own happiness, sanity or priorities to do so, thus becoming the favored child. The scapegoat however, has given up in their attempts to please, and usually lies at the end of the narcissistic rage, and all of the narcissist’s [problems are the scapegoat’s fault.
The control does not end at adulthood.
The narcissist has had plenty of time to perfect their craft. They have learned how to push buttons and have conditioned their child into bending to them, no matter how it will affect the child personally. Unless you have dealt with one, it’s hard to understand how deep the disorder lies, and how twisted and complicated the actions behind it are. This article gives a brief summary on some of the characteristics of a narcissistic mother.
To sum it up…
“Everything she does is deniable. She violates your boundaries. She favoritizes. She undermines. She demeans, criticizes and denigrates. She makes you look crazy. She’s envious. She’s a liar in too many ways to count. She has to be the center of attention all the time. She manipulates your emotions in order to feed on your pain. She’s selfish and willful. She’s self-absorbed. She is insanely defensive and is extremely sensitive to any criticism. She terrorized. She’s infantile and petty. She’s aggressive and shameless. She shed her responsibilities to you as soon as she was able. She’s exploitative. She projects. She is never wrong about anything. She seems to have no awareness that other people even have feelings. She blames. She destroys your relationships. As a last resort she goes pathetic.”
If you have the time though, it really is worth reading through that website. It was incredibly eye-opening and prompted even further reading.
I came up with a sad, although accurate metaphor to describe the situation.
A narcissist is drowning. She refuses to learn to swim and longs for someone to save her. The problem is, she’ll drown anyone who comes close enough to help. You are left with two options, leave her there to drown, or drown alongside her. Both decisions are painful. Both decisions hurt. But only one decision is preserving.
It may be sad, but it’s true, and that is why the guilt will no longer eat away at me. Cyndi, at So Much More Than A Mom, sums it up perfectly when she says, “It is incredibly difficult and painful…. she raised you to blame yourself for everything. But it is necessary to put the blame where it rightfully belongs.”
And that is what I will do.
And more importantly, I feel good about the decision. It wasn’t easy to make, but it feels like a weight has been lifted, and that despite the pain it causes, its for the better.For me, and for my children. As Cyndi said… The behavior does not stop once the child reaches adulthood. It will continue throughout the child’s life, or until the child no longer allows it. There is no middle ground. There is no playing nice. In the world of the narcissist, it is all or none. They’re playing a game, and there is only one rule; they will win at all costs.
I’m okay, when I’m not alone. And by alone I mean, just me and kids. When Dan’s here… I’m okay. When Bre’s here, I’m okay.
I’m just so depressed lately. I get left alone with the kids, all by myself and it’s like… I can’t find the energy, or the motivation, or drive to do anything. I just sit here thinking… And thinking. I don’t want to do anything, but I know I have to. I have so much crap piling up that needs done… Like laundry, cat litter, finishing a couple sewing projects, cleaning out my bedroom… Of course, which Dan started complaining about once I fixed the kitchen and living room, which he had been complaining about before he started complaining about the bedroom…. I know he doesn’t mean it like that… but it just feels like… Nothing is ever good enough.
He tells me to relax if I want, but he doesn’t understand. I can’t relax amidst chaos, and a cluttered, messy house with chores undone, is chaos. It just stresses me out more.
It just sucks. I have one of the most stressful and emotional events of my life, and it’s like… I’m expected to just keep giving and giving and giving, and there’s no shortage of people wanting to take and take and take. Sometimes I just wish I could walk out the door and leave for a few days… A few weeks. Just leave and do what I want to do. Uninterupted peace, order and neatness. Unfortunately, I can’t. There is no shortage of wanting or taking from me… And there never will be.
Even at my worst, and lowest point, there’s still no shortage of people wanting more…
But what am I supposed to do when I feel like there’s nothing left to give? Nothing left for them to take?