Archive for the ‘narcissistic personality disorder’ Category

You cry fibromyalgia

peace prevailed

Peace of Home

The car was parked unusually close to my apartment.  It was foggy and I didn’t recognize the passengers.  I had to take my dogs out.  I usually take both dogs, but I only took one this time.  Maybe I was subconsciously preparing for the fight or flight response.  I surely can’t respond with two big strong dogs pulling on me.

They were still sitting in the car when I came back to get my other dog.  I said hello and the young woman in the driver’s seat returned my greeting.  The subject of my neighbor quickly came up.   He’s been harassing me for two months.

I thought she was being nice but then she cursed.  I asked her to repeat herself.  She verbally insulted me.

I have a rebellious nature that doesn’t always serve me well.  I responded, but not by taking flight, which I should have done.  I told her what I thought of my neighbor and that’s when he got out of the car.

He had a strange hat on and didn’t look like himself.  She got out right after he did.  He was clearly more intoxicated than I’d ever seen him, which must have taken an incredible amount of alcohol.  He walked around the car towards me.  He began his attack with a vulgar one-man show.

I was stunned but not too surprised by my neighbor’s behavior.   It was a clear view of what I had felt during the times I had tried interacting with him.   There had been a constant current of contempt seeping from his pores and he reveled in it like the insects in the sticky sweet sap from the wounded oak tree in my yard this past summer.

Being around him each time had left me raw and open, as if like the oak, something had struck a part of my foundation.

I made brief eye contact with the young woman.  We had both stood silently while he acted out.

“Why don’t you try talking to him?” she asked me.

Her remark actually surprised me more than the neighbor’s behavior had.

“You see the kind of person he is?” I asked her.  Obviously she didn’t.

“He’s really a good guy,” she said.

I guess she’s an optimist.  Maybe she believes she has magic powers that will reveal this “good guy.”

His behavior over the past two months had led to eviction papers but he blamed me.

I guess I was being the optimist too because I thought if I asked him one more time to be quiet, especially in front of a woman he wanted to impress, that maybe he would listen.  I was wrong.

“Why don’t you just leave me alone?  I need sleep.  I have…’’  I was going to say fibromyalgia, but he interrupted and began an outlandish verbal bashing.

“Oh and what do you say?” he shouted gloriously.  “You say you have fii bro my algia!  And what does fii bro my algia mean!  That you hurrt!”  He drew out the words fibromyalgia and hurt with great scorn.

He shouted fibromyalgia several more times.  Amazingly he pronounced it correctly, but then he had told me several times about having been the smartest student in his high school English department.  I’d found this curious because he reminded me of it every time I mentioned my writing.  It seemed like he needed to always make it understood between us that he was smarter and better than me.

This is all much clearer to me now.  Now that it’s all over and I can hear myself think again.  For a while, all I heard every day and night was him.

He looked up at the sky continuing to shout out, “Oh I hurt! I hurt! I hurt!”

“Oh! Oh! Oh!” he kept on.  He started physically mocking a person in pain by holding his body in ways to act like he was hurting.  He included sexual innuendos while he was carrying on.  It was a crude and ugly scene.

I can’t say why I stood there witnessing this behavior as long as I did, although I think it only lasted a short time.  Responding to a sudden outburst of verbal abuse and being bullied like I was isn’t something I’m well practiced at doing.

“You’re a c**t,” he said.  There it was.  Hatred that I knew was there.  I’m not sure if this surprised me or not.  My memory of the event is like one moment in time.  I remember more how I felt afterward than I do about when it was happening.

He briefly paced around in a small circle, obviously spewing with anger.  He called me that name again.  His friend looked a little ashamed, but she didn’t interrupt him.

I wondered how could she be okay with what we both saw.  I failed to remember that she’s looking beyond his behavior at some fairy tale in the sky where he’s that, “good guy.”

“I work every day,” I said.  I knew nothing I could say would mean anything to him, drunk or sober, but I’d said it anyway.

“Oh yeah, and what do you do!  You cry the fibromyalgia blues!  You sit home on you’re a** and cry those fibromyalgia blues, and oh how it hurts.”  He tried to sing but was way too intoxicated.  “I hurt, I hurt, oh I hurt,” he shouted, still looking at the sky.  I don’t know why I so clearly remember him looking at the sky while he ranted and raged.

I’ve never cried any fibromyalgia blues to that guy.  I did cry twice around him while attempting a friendship, but my tears had nothing to do with fibromyalgia.  He was by far one of the rudest people I’ve ever been around and twice he insulted me in ways that caused me to eventually stop speaking to him.   The few times I visited him felt like I had entered his personal war zone.  Like he took a break from shooting arrows in his backyard and invited me over for some easy shots.

He continued with his drunken spew of contempt standing there in front of my porch.  “You sit and cry how you hurt so you can get a check!”  He emphasized the word check with a high note.  Then of course he mentioned tax dollars.

Some people who claim patriotism don’t seem interested in the big picture of what helps shape our country into a place of opportunity and freedom — for every citizen.

In America we can better our lives, all of us, not just the able-bodied working folks.  We can be anything we want to be.  We strive to make sure that every child receives an education.  We have social aid and many government programs to help needy children, and their families.   We also help our disabled and elderly citizens.   At least, those are American ideals.

People who don’t understand disability unless there is a wheelchair or a death-bed in sight can be cruel, like my neighbor.  Some people will automatically assume a person without these visible affirmations of a handicap or illness is a fraud.

I continued trying to defend myself, which was an odd experience.   I didn’t much care what this neighbor thinks of me.  The words coming out of my mouth were like dampened cries from another place.

“I paid taxes.” I said.  I knew it would only make him madder so again, the rebel in me most likely wasn’t serving my best interests, which is ultimately to have peace in my life.  Obviously this means walking away from certain people or situations.

“Yeah.  I’m sure they took a little out of your check,” he stammered.

“You are nothing,” he said.   He stomped out his cigarette on the ground.  “Nothing,” he repeated.

I remember this part clearly.  Finally, he began walking away.

“I’m not nothing,” I said quietly.  I almost cried but stopped myself.  I looked into the young woman’s eyes again wondering, I guess, what she thought of her friend.

“I know that,” she said.   She didn’t look pleased about her friend’s behavior, but she was looking for the sunny side of a burnt fried egg.

“You ain’t nothing,” he stopped to say once more before going inside his apartment.

“I’m better than you,” I said calmly, although that response surprised me.

“Ohhh yeah!  Oh you are sooo good aren’t you!”

“Yes.  I am.”  I said.  “You’ll be leaving soon,” I added.  I shut my door.

That wasn’t his last performance but he’s gone now.  It was a long two months.

The short-lived relationship I had with this person was an eye-opening experience for me.  I thought I’d be able to spot a narcissist anywhere and easily.

Spotting one and ducking one are different skills.

I don’t know how narcissistic my former neighbor is, but he sure had a mighty large dose of himself.  Arrogance and a sense of superiority over most of humanity were traits he proudly displayed.  I didn’t know what to think.  One day I asked him why he invited me over if he didn’t like anything I ever said and put me down all the time.  He said I took things wrong, adding that his friends were all fine with his ways.

I guess there are many reasons a person criticizes others, particularly when it is done with great passion.

“What you see is what you get,” I remember saying to my neighbor months ago.

I finally decided that people who spend a lot of time hiding think everyone else is doing it too, but that’s just a personal theory.

From now on, I’m going to follow Leslie’s turn on this phrase, “What I see is what you get.” which she talks about in a recent blog post on malignant narcissists.

I forgot to keep the light in the watchtower glowing.  I forgot that when people prove they are mean and rude to get away from them if I can, instead of trying to figure out if I imagined them being mean and rude.  I forgot again to listen to myself.  I keep doing that, but then forgetting does remind me to remember.

Thank you for visiting my blog.

This post represents several things to me personally, the best of which, I guess, is what it was like being bullied, although I didn’t write about the aftermath of that evening.  It was as hard or harder than standing there witnessing my neighbor’s abuse.

It’s also an extreme example of stigma and disbelief around invisible illness.  Although this person was intoxicated, I’ve had the stones thrown at me for looking fine and receiving disability benefits.

It’s about learning to walk away, right away, from people who behave destructively, especially when I am the target.  As with most of my posts, it seems to be about listening to myself, or not, depending on how you look at it.  I prefer to believe that I’ll eventually get wise(r?).

Also, my friend CJ, who has a great blog about living with fibromyalgia, has repeatedly encouraged me to keep on writing.  Write anything she said.  In that respect, this post speaks to my rather frequent unfortunate entanglements.

With all that said, I’m happy to have my personal space back, my peace of home and am rather looking forward to the rest of this beautiful season.

Peace



Romance, after the Narcissist

Milano, Italy

Image via Wikipedia

“I can give you a better kiss than the one I gave you before,” he said, flirting with me over the phone.  Our lips had touched gently and briefly as a parting gesture the week before.

“You can,” I responded.  It was partly a question and a little flirting back.

“You bet I can,” he said and that was pretty much it for me.   His confidence gave me butterflies and weakened my knees a bit.   I was shaving my legs within the hour, so I knew.

I was also using some lovely citrus body scrub, along with Neutrogena’s Sesame oil, both products having been gifts from the narcissist I had a relationship with, if you call what we had a relationship.  I had one, but I have no clue what he had other than a private little party in his mind.

I was glad to be using these products again.  I’ve used the sesame oil since I first discovered it in the early 1980’s, but love has a way of pinning itself to little things in a romance.

The place you first made-love or food that you enjoyed together remind you of what is gone when the romance is over.  The bottle of sesame oil had worked its way into my memories and this is something I love about writing.  Just now as I type, I realize that the narcissist never knew how to make use of his gift.  He knew how to give gifts but he did not know about sweet romance.  If he had known, the body of sesame oil would have been empty a long time ago.

Maybe the most difficult part of letting go and moving on after ending a romantic relationship are the reminders that come when you attempt to be sexual with a new partner, even something as slight as flirting can cause you to remember.  Plus, the aftermath of a relationship with a narcissist carries unique problems.  Many people are severely mentally and emotionally traumatized by the experience.  I was.

I mentioned to a couple I know that I was ready to date evoking instant match-making ideas in the woman.

I liked their friend the first time I met him and we later had an evening alone together, the time of which was fun and easy.  He was confident but didn’t seem arrogant.  When he said he could give me a better kiss I thought well, he sounds like a man who knows what he has to offer and it sounded alright with me.

Do I trust my radar?  No.  Not now.  I don’t yet trust any feelings of attraction .  A relationship with a severe narcissist left me with a large dose of cautiousness about people’s intentions or sincerity that I’ve never known before.

I refuse to stop living though.  I’m too young to give up on love or romance.  I think anyone living is too young.  Plus, its Spring and what a wonderful time to be like the French and take a new lover.   I either read that in a book once or saw it in a movie where a French woman said, “I’ll think I’ll take a lover for the Spring.”

This is what I was thinking about as I poured oil on my legs and then used a nice lotion afterward.

I did contemplate my actions.  At least the man is honest about his wish to, “give me a better kiss,” I thought, but there are conflicting feelings.  We don’t seem to have that much in common.   He doesn’t have a dog.  I must admit I wonder about people who don’t have dogs.  As I rubbed the lotion on my legs I thought hey, I’m not trying to mate for life here.  I’m not a bird.  I’m only human.

I thought about being in my forties.  I remembered a wonderful psychiatric nurse I once met.  She was an intelligent woman who had traveled the world in her forties.  I was struggling with the aftermath of an unhealthy relationship then too.  I’ve met two severe narcissists in my life.  I loved both of them and I ended both relationships.  They were about 13 years apart.  I never thought after the first one I’d ever go through anything like that again but all narcissists are not created equally.  The two I have known both did have charming ways, passion and intelligence but they were very different types of people.

The subject of sex came up.  That’s another part of a relationship with a narcissist.  There are usually problems around this.

“If you think you enjoy sex now,” she told me, “just wait ’til your in your forties.  You have a lot to look forward to in life,” and she went on to tell me how she had divorced a man, very much like the one I had known, when she was in her forties.  I was in my early thirties then.  She told me about her leaving and going off to Europe for two years where she, “enjoyed several lovers,” while she was there.  It sounded dreamy but hopeful. 

“I had an absolutely wonderful time,” she went on, “and then I met the man I would marry.  He moved here and we have a wonderful marriage.  You can have this too,” she told me, “but you must leave this place to have it.”

I was in a hospital for depression.  I’d only been there one night and it was clear to me and this head nurse that I was in the wrong place.  The psychiatrist disliked me so much after meeting me only once, he said he was glad to see me go, which was early the next morning.   That nurse had prepared my discharge papers after our conversation the night before.

The woman planted a seed in my brain.  I may not get to go to Europe for two years, but I swear I don’t want to make it to 50 and say dang, I forgot to enjoy those 40’s.

What if he surprises me I wondered?  Honestly, I wondered if the man could not only give me a kiss but if he could rock my world.  Shake me into a new reality.  Give me new thoughts and memories of romance.

I have grieved.  I have hurt.  I have seen many days when I didn’t want it to get dark.  I just didn’t.  The nights of the past winter seemed each one to last forever.

I want to take a lover for the Spring.  I couldn’t get it out of my mind.

The kiss drew me in and I found myself swept away into romance.  I have a new memory now.  I have a new and sweet experience.  The soft kiss lasted as long as the winter nights had.

I’m not out of the woods.   I doubt I’ll be like the woman in the novel or the movie, or the nurse in Europe.  I have to learn my boundaries.  I have to learn again, to trust myself.

I remain human.  I remain a woman.  I remain imperfect.  I remain cautious.







The Narcissist’s Lover

the narcissist's lover, a blue experienceMy therapist said maybe I’m desensitized to negative behavior.  Well, something caused me to accept such a negative influence into my personal life.  Something other than his passionately cultivated manipulation and eloquent conning.  I don’t think there is any one reason that stands alone as to why I accepted what I did.

I ignored things about the man’s behavior even before our first visit together.   I wasn’t oblivious to my gut feelings, but I most certainly didn’t put enough thought into the possible meanings that his words and actions portrayed. 

Every day he called.  Some days more than once.  He left messages.  I repeatedly said no to his offers, but looking back, I can see that he had a back up plan for each time I said no. 

I had known the man for over twenty years.  He was my life insurance agent.  I always had a special feeling for him and believed that was mutual.  

I was altogether flattered by the compliments and attention he gave me when we first met.  I was nineteen and he was past thirty.  I never thought of the attraction I felt because he was married and so was I.  Instead, for the next twenty or so years, I held him in my mind as a mentor figure.  Someone I would ask advice from and whom I respected. 

Things changed one Autumn day when I called his office on business.

It was an odd feeling to have trusted and respected him for such a long time and then finding myself not believing much he was saying during our first phone conversations.

My agreeing to a visit from him was all he needed.  He had a plan and intended on working it.  

It was the third time he came to visit that I decided to ignore two rude messages he had left on my answering machine from his cell phone while he was driving to see me.

“That sure is a long shower you’re taking,” he had said.  He called back within five minutes or so and left another message.  I was in the shower and could hear his voice in the background.  I assumed he was saying something nice.  A regular kind of guy would have been happy knowing a woman was preparing for his visit.

I was surprised when I listened to the messages.  His tone was full of something — something I could feel in my gut and it didn’t feel good. 

I remember thinking how strange for a man to be wooing me, while at the same time using sarcasm.  Most men try to make a good first impression.

I saved the messages.  I almost let him hear them.  I wanted to say, hey listen how you sound.  I wanted to ask him what his problem was.  But I didn’t.  I erased the messages later, because when he arrived, both times, he was that other person…

There were plenty of clear signs and red flags that the man had serious issues around women and sex.   A part of my mind kept saying hey, this is the man you have always thought so highly of and maybe he’s telling the truth about the sincerity of his affections.  The rest of me said nah, he’s lying.

He said he had neglected his sexual needs for several years, yet he carried a little black bag in his trunk that held clues to this being a lie, which it was.  He’d gone out to his car in my driveway to get the bag.  He said it had been in his trunk for a couple of years.  The energy of his lie filled the room and my mind.

Our first phone conversations had consisted of me telling him how much my life had changed since I’d first met him and last talked to him.  I told him about living with fibromyalgia and the sadness in my heart about my son having an illness.  He asked if I had wrinkles and what my skin was like.  How strange I thought.  Talking with him on a level of communication so superficial was taxing and draining.  I was happy when the calls were finished. 

My behavior and reasons for being there are the most worthy of exploration, but I guess, that’s another story.

He continued to talk a lot about physical appearances in the beginning of our relationship, which was as superficial as our earlier phone conversations had been.  Upon reflection, I can see that appearances were always top priority for him.

The first time we were physically intimate, he spoke of a young woman whom he was closely acquainted with.  He compared my body to hersI was surprised, but also rather amused.  I hadn’t yet fallen for his seduction.  Each time I saw him, I thought it would be the last time. 

“You are still very beautiful,” he said once and then added something like, “but she has those muscles you only see on younger women.”

The man is not young and his body showed his age.  I asked him how young he liked women and told him that he should go after what he wanted.  I told him I felt good about my age and body.

He changed.  He started telling me he was completely in-love with me.   I still didn’t think I would become more involved with him.  I had memories of my earlier attraction to him and that was alive, but the character I was seeing bits and pieces of was not the man whom I had imagined he was all those years.  

He was completely superficial.  He wasn’t honest.  He said things thugs say.  He had a juvenile way of justifying behavior that I believed was wrong.  He made fun of people who worked for him.  No, I’d never get serious about someone like that, I thought. 

I didn’t ignore everything that caused me to suspect a hole in his professed integrity, but what I confronted, he twisted around.  He was a master at playing mind games and manipulation.  I was standing on the edge of an emotional breakdown.

I wouldn’t have continued accepting his calls and visits if there hadn’t been positive traits about him that I liked.  He made me laugh all the time.  This got me in trouble before, and I thought I’d learned my lesson, but apparently I did not.  People who can make me laugh are usually very funny folks.  Sometimes, it takes a lot to make me laugh.

After a few visits with me, he said he hadn’t been serious about his earlier random and odd remarks.  He realized that his comparisons of my body didn’t move me, at least not emotionally.  I was however taking mental notes.

He tried several times to make me believe the suggestions he had made were my desires; literally telling me that I had been the one to say what he had said.  I let pass too many times these incidences of dishonesty.  I wish instead, I had allowed myself to see the truth.

He tried convincing me that I had been mesmerized by a young woman in a photo he had shown me under the guise of it being a part of his photography portfolio.  I wondered if he believed his lies, but I seriously doubted it.

I rolled my eyes and let his attempts to manipulate my mind pass without taking issue.  I couldn’t imagine wanting a real relationship with someone who played those kinds of mental games.

I didn’t think I’d continue seeing him, but I did.

The man was more than persistent and seductive.  He was cunning and smart.  He quickly figured out where I was vulnerable, which was that I was lonely and wanted love.

I ignored physical things.  We had been intimate several times before I noticed that his nipples were asymmetrical. 

I was resting my head on his shoulder when I noticed that one of them was much larger and differently shaped than the other one.  I asked him about it.   He told me his Cuban-liposuction story.

He went to Cuba to have liposuction because it was cheaper there.  He said he added a face lift while he was there.  He said he’d had several face lifts. 

He showed me where they had stretched his skin and tied it together underneath his arm pits and behind his ears.  He didn’t want me touching his chest.  He made that clear.   I guess he thought out of sight or touch then out of mind and, this was true.  I put blinders on.

I forgot what or who he blamed his weight gain on but I’m sure he had a story.   He had a story for everything.  Everything in his world, except success, is the fault of another person, always.

I didn’t realize the operations were a result of a hiding so intense that it prevails over all else.  I thought the guy had too much money and didn’t deal with aging very well, both of which are true, but the surgical cuts run deeper than extra money and a wish to look younger.

He created a character just for me.  Whenever he learned I didn’t like something he never mentioned it again.  He was on a quest to discover all that he could about me and used the information to control and manipulate me.

Mostly, he found out I could love.  He discovered that I could feel deeply with all my heart.  He started conversations to convince me he was a good decent man, “loyal to his own demise,” he once said.  My inner voice screamed that he was so full of shit, but I still let the relationship continue. 

I started to believe his lies.  I started to feel loved and very, very special to him.  And, I laughed. 

He opened doors for me.  When I was tired he washed my dishes.  He walked my dogs in the name of helping me conserve my energy. 

For the best of five months he held his pretensions well.  Whatever didn’t work he would try something else.

Slowly, he told me a story of love that I believed.  He loved me.  He had been in-love with me since he first saw me more than twenty years earlier.  He wanted to spend his life with me. 

While I set aside my gut feelings that something wasn’t right, I saw a gentleman.  I dreamed that his story of love was true.  I did want it to be true.  

I had truly fallen in-love the first time we met, but I had never dared to even think of the feelings I had for him.  Those feelings stayed wherever I put them in my mind and heart, until he came to my home, all those years later, literally demanding that I believe he loved me.

For a while, I believed the love story.  I believed we had missed our earlier chance.  We were having a wonderful time, I thought, until the day I told him that I believed him.  I told him I accepted his love.

He began to say things, sometimes a response to something I had said and other times, out of the blue, he would make a remark that exposed an underlying thuggery.  I was taken aback each time.  He blamed his sudden mood changes or demeaning statements on his past hurts.  People had used things against him he said.  It was hard to trust he said.  Sarcasm was put off to his sense of humor.

I’ve known love, very sweet love, and what I had found with this man, that which I did adore, was disappearing. 

I became tired of not trusting him, which was always in the back of my mind.  I stopped feeling loved and instead felt that he was using my body like a toy and my mind like a puppet. 

I became depressed.  I was physically, mentally and emotionally worn out.  An episode of severe fatigue hit me during a holiday.  He had wanted to come home with me, but things weren’t right.  My doubt about him had magnified.  I told him I wasn’t ready for him to meet more of my family.  I also really needed to rest. 

Being with him had been passionate and I had laughed a lot, but there were side-effects of the relationship that were most unpleasant.  I didn’t feel mentally, emotionally or physically healthy.  I felt drained and weak.  I didn’t reveal to him how much I knew.  I simply said I was tired.  He would have nothing to do with my being human.

He told me during our last phone conversation that he doesn’t care about any human being on the planet.  He said he had been diagnosed with a, “pathology.” 

I asked him if he was diagnosed with Narcissistic Personality Disorder.  He said yes.  I didn’t believe it.  I didn’t believe he was seeing a therapist.  He would never admit to a professional like he did to me that he doesn’t care about anyone. 

The kind person he pretended to be could not survive his lewd and crude personality.  More and more often he said things that were offensive and repulsive.

“His rakish personality disguised a gentleness that I and I alone, realized he possessed. A gentleness guarded by a hardened shell, his inner child cached within furious outbursts and temperamental explosions. Even my faith in his gentle nature required rose-colored glasses at times; so unpredictable was his split personality.”  (Excerpt from A Perfect Love Story).

I didn’t realize while I was loving him that his intentions were cruel.  I didn’t know I loved a psychopath.  I looked inside at the man I believed he was.

 

Excerpt from, A Perfect Love Story, by CZBZ,The Narcissistic Continuum

All content on this page, including texts, images and external links are protected under copyrights.  Please see Terms of Use.  Thank you for visiting Dogkisses’s blog.



 

A Man without a Heart

“Life is all about the Narcissist, and while they learn to “feign” or act emotions, they are essentially cut-off from their own authentic feelings, –They seek to dominate and control others as a primary way of navigating life.” 

Source: Narcissism as Prophecy, by Richard Boyd, Body Mind Psychotherapist, Energetics Institute, Perth, West Australia.

“I don’t have feelings for anyone, not you or anyone else,” he said immediately after I told him I was sad and having a hard time with my feelings.  “I’m thinking about ending my life,” he added.  “I have a 45 and I know how to use it.”

The man was lying about ending his life.  The reasons for his statement was to play more mind games with me.

“Can you imagine for one minute that maybe it’s the truth that I don’t have any feelings for anyone?”  he pleaded

I can now.

By all definitions, he fits the description of a person with severe Narcissistic Personality Disorder.  Eventually, he went as far as to claim having been diagnosed, but I knew that was a lie too.

Our relationship had been serious, at least to me it was.  He certainly took pride in his ability to convince me that the love he felt for me was the kind that last forever.  He proclaimed over and over that he wanted to spend the rest of his life with me.  He literally begged me every day for the best of six months to believe he was truly in love with me. 

I hadn’t believed him.  I continued suggesting that he was rather in a delayed mid-life crisis and was merely infatuated with me.  This only fueled his wish to convince me otherwise, plus I was wrong.  His intentions towards me and our relationship didn’t come close to the innocence of a temporary infatuation and there wasn’t any mid-life crisis going on.

I had trusted him as my insurance agent for over twenty years before he spotted me at a low ebb in my life, and took full advantage of that in every way possible.  I believe it was my longstanding trust in him that in large part, caused me to question my doubts and slowly abandon my screaming intuitive urge to get very far away from him.

Upon reflection, I can see how unfortunately perfect I was for him.

 

Love or Abuse?

c. 50

Image via Wikipedia

Ending an abusive relationship can be easier than dealing with the aftermath, which may include forgetting why you had to end it.

Abuse is abuse, but psychological abuse isn’t as easy to recognize as is a bruise or a cut to the flesh.

We’ve all heard the saying love hurts.  How much is it really supposed to hurt?  It shouldn’t hurt all the while you’re in a relationship –that’s for sure.

Love is an elusive subject.  I imagine love can have many meanings and different shapes but abuse is not love.

I loved a wonderful man, I thought.  I also loved the way I believed he loved me.

The man I loved was kind, compassionate, generous, funny, smart and told me every day he wanted to spend the rest of his life with me.

Unfortunately, I loved an illusion, an impostor.  I loved a character that was passionately and intelligently designed, especially for me.  I loved a man who I honestly believe has severe Narcissistic Personality Disorder.

The man I loved created a character for me, mostly through what I now realize were constant interrogations.  He would sit by my window with me in the mornings where I liked having coffee.  He asked me questions about my life twenty years earlier.  Over and over he asked the same questions.  He disguised his questioning as an interest in getting to know, “everything about me,” which he called love.

How he created the character is a long story.  It was continuously being created in every moment we spent together.

The first day we were sexually intimate he began asking me about fantasies.  Had I ever had this one or that one and if I said no, he would ask had I ever at least considered certain ones he had mentioned.   He also wanted to know about every relationship I’d ever had as if we were in our early twenties or even teenagers.  He was in his early sixties, almost twenty years my senior.

He wanted to know all about my childhood.  Basically, he wanted to know everything I liked, disliked, desired or had ever desired so that he could create my perfect mate. 

There are reasons good and intelligent people fall for abusive and pathological personalities.  We don’t fall in love with a cruel person.  It’s the opposite.  Sometimes cruel people seek kind people.  We fall for the kindness they pretend to have.  We fall for characteristics such as a great sense of humor, what looks like compassion, an acknowledgment, granted an ingenuine one, of our hard work in life and who doesn’t enjoy being charmed?

In my case, the man I loved was wonderful until the first time I expressed my personal feelings about something other than being grateful to have such a terrific man in my life.

He became a cruel, deceiving, lewd, sarcastic and possibly the most destructive, was that he became intensely revengeful.  The man felt rejected by me.  I would learn that this triggered what he called his, “childhood narcissistic injuries.”

He spent six months working harder than I could ever imagine a man trying, to gain my love, admiration and respect.   I finally fell for him, for sure, and this was the hardest part of ending the relationship.

When I finally told him that I trusted his love, I never again saw the man he had pretended to be.  It was as if the man I loved died and that’s exactly how it felt.

Instead of chocolate and roses, poetry books for lovers, and gifts he thought I would like, he began sending me emails clearly calculated in a way to leave me in the dark about what he was doing.  He moved to a new home and didn’t tell me where he lived. 

I don’t know how long he thought I would hang in there, and I can’t believe I was there in that relationship one day, but hindsight is everything.

I guess I was in shock. 

He continued being cruel to me, finally sending me emails offering me, “whatever my price,” to be one of his nude models.  I never knew he had nude models.  He described their bodies.  I was truly sickened.

I would eventually receive an email offering me money to be with him, if I could compartmentalize my feelings.  I blocked his emails after that day.

He’s rich and I’m poor.  He goes to church and I don’t.  And so… He called his financial offers a good deed in the name of charity and love.

This was not love.

There was pure malice in his offers.  He knew it would break my heart to hear him talk about his lust and sex with other women.  It was psychological abuse.  Telling me all about his new home and his wonderful new furniture, while never inviting me there was his way of hurting me.  And, it worked.

I discovered that everything he had told me all along had been lies.  His lies were complex, complicated and detailed.

The entire time he maintained that he knew what love was as if he were a master of the subject.  It was amazing.  He wrote demanding righteous long emails about what love and courtship meant.  I was so shocked that it literally silenced me, for a little while.

He maintained that he had been wronged.  My crime was that I wasn’t willing to be his devotee.

“It is your loyalty that I desire,” he wrote.  “The loyalty you have to your son and mother.”

I thought it was crazy at his age to say those things.  Plus, if he had been the man he had pretended, then he would have had my loyalty.  I concluded he hadn’t really wanted me at all, nor my loyalty because he had it and he trashed it.  The man wanted nothing more than a lifeless doll.

I was tricked, deceived, used, manipulated and conned.

Narcissists are great tricksters.  Anyone can fall prey to a severe malignant and passionate narcissist.

There were many red flags in the beginning that what he was showing was not love.

He couldn’t stop telling me how wonderful I was and how he adored everything about me.

If a man cannot talk about things besides how great you are, then something is probably not right.  Flattery is always nice, but when this is all a man ever does watch out!

When a man puts a woman on a pedal stool, constantly praising her, telling her how awesome and wonderful she is, she should beware.

Take heed when your new guy is all about constantly flattering you, gazing into your eyes– all the time, nearly drooling over whatever it is he is focusing on about you;  your intelligence, your compassion, your empathy, your unique abilities, your physical beauty, your one of a kind sexual ability to turn him on and on and on and on — this type of flattery might be a strong sign that something isn’t quite right.

I’m not talking about real love or the wonderful sensations of falling in love.  I’m not talking about the kind of love that grows out of mutual respect and sincerely getting to know another person. I’m talking about a person who is lying, pretending and putting on a show for you.  One day this will turn and you will hear just the opposite.

Narcissists play games.  Pathological destructive games that hurt and damage people.

He told me after our intimate relationship was destroyed that he had never known love.  He said he didn’t feel anything.  He said he had used me to feel emotions, mainly through having sex.  “You felt something so that’s what I liked about being with you,” he told me.

Gifts are not always an expression of love.  If you’re dealing with a narcissist who has money he will certainly use it to charm you and suck you into his world.  He may very well try to get you dependent or addicted to his money.

Gifts may also tell you a lot about him because when you’re dealing with someone who is like a young child in the sense that the world revolves around him, the gifts will always be what he likes or wants you to have so he can enjoy them with you.

Much of his behavior was a way to mimic being in love.

Narcissists are also control freaks.  The man pretended to be generous, always bringing gifts, always asking if I wanted to go shopping.  I don’t like to shop.  I declined many offers, but one time I needed some socks.  He acted like it tore him apart while I shopped for them.  Later, I needed eye glasses. 

 He was always around at the time.  I barely had time to myself because he was in his cunning manipulative stage.   So, he went with me to get the glasses.  I was surprised how he was always offering me money or things I didn’t want, but didn’t offer to help pay for something I needed. 

He bragged about all he had provided for his son and how sad it was that my son had not had the same.  No socks or glasses, but he offered to pay for me to have a face life.  He’d had several.

He was terribly threatened by my having a few normal friends and a family.  This is not love.

Loving a person means wanting the best for that person.  It means wanting them to thrive.

It may be true that love hurts, but this is different than the hurt that comes from abuse.

I had no reason to think this man was acting and lying, aside from my gut screaming out at me.  Most of us don’t think that way.  Most of us take people for who they say they are.  We can judge them by how they act around us and treat us, along with listening to how they speak of other people.

Malignant narcissists have a damaged character.  They portray a public image that has nothing to do with who they are, but this is for the public and it is not what people close to them see in private.

You may see on the outside a confident and outgoing person, seemingly quite concerned for the well-being of others, a social butterfly, a community leader, a leader in a church, a member of well-respected organizations, a giver to charity — but on the inside is an entirely different story.  There is a person without any substance and sadly, he knows it.

Any person can be a victim of narcissistic abuse.

Sometimes we do not know what is happening to us until we discover that there are actually words to describe exactly what we are experiencing.   Knowledge really is freedom.

If you are in a relationship where you feel confused, like every single thing that goes wrong is your fault and you begin to feel badly about yourself, like you just aren’t good enough, all the while you hear someone say how much he or she loves you, something is definitely wrong.

I hope those of us who have been hurt in a psychologically abusive relationship will heal.  I hope we will recognize signs of an abusive personality and walk the other way. 

I hope we will choose love and leave abuse.

Thank you for visiting Dogkisses’s blog.


Related Articles

An Ode to a Narcissist

“Some women can fake an orgasm. But some men can fake an entire relationship!” – Sharon Stone

I will tell you…

I will tell you I love you. I will tell you I am in love with you.
I will tell you over and over and over again and again.
I will tell you until you believe me.

I will always open doors for you, so you may think
I am a true gentleman.
I will run in the rain to my shiny car for an umbrella,
just for you, my sweet angel.

I will tell you how special you are. I will tell you again and again.
I will tell you how I am absolutely without a doubt sure that you are the one for me.
I will tell you this until you believe me.

I will give you nice gifts. I will tell you it is because you have lived without for so long,
I will tell you how it makes me happy
to see you enjoy these things in life.

I will tell you how I want to help you. I will tell you this
again and again.
I will tell you things that will make you dream of a better future.

I will tell you all the things that I can think of to make you give up on that other man,
the one who treats you with too much love.

I will do all I can to make you think you are the one for me,
that my love is known to me and real.

I will tell you who loves you when nobody else is there for you.

I will tell you not to worry if my love is real my dear,
again and again, over and over, I will tell.

I will tell you your doubts are to be abandoned,
I will tell you this each time you doubt my love.

I will tell you I can help you,
make your life easier.

I will tell you how I want to declare my love for you to your family,
“I will tell them how awesome you are.”

I will tell you how I will exclaim my love for you,
In the future, when I don’t have to hide you.

I will tell you I like your son and family,
I know they are so important to you.

I will tell you it is the truth once you finally start to believe,
all that I tell.

I will work hard to win your heart,
I can, I am very smart.

I will tell you I am doing fine, after that first time.

That first time when I feel like you are going to hurt me.

This — sweet angel — is when everything changes.

I will tell you a first lie,
a second, a third and more.

I will tell you and you will believe me,
then my sweet angel, it will be near the end.

I will tell you little things,
designed to burn a bit and sting.

I will tell you I feel mistreated,
hoping you may not see that it is you being played.

I will use this lie to leave you,
the telling has changed.

I will tell you I am leaving town.
I will tell you not to bother calling.
I will tell you more lies.

I will tell you the truth only when I think it might hurt you.

I will tell you that I almost had an encounter,
I will say that I had to stop because I thought of you.

I will think you must be a dumb little slow-talking country girl.
I can tell you anything and you will believe it!

You, however, will know, what I tell, is a lie, and you will hurt.
I forgot to tell you,
I am detached from my heart.
I am capable of not feeling.

I will tell you I do not feel important enough.
I will tell you how I feel second.

I will tell you how I fucked her.
I will tell you I got hard when I looked at her body.

I will tell you even when you start to cry.
I will tell you how you don’t like for me to lie.

I will tell you I enjoyed it.
I will tell you how I came inside of her.
I will tell you I came there, thinking of you.

You will be stunned.
I will feel like a stud.
I will tell you anything I feel like telling to make myself feel better.

I will tell you all about me because that is what this whole thing with you was,
about me.

I will not tell you that I used you.
I will not tell you how many lies I told to you.

I will tell you I am sorry,
as I walk away at 4 am, no plans to make amends.

I will tell you I probably assassinated one of your plants,
living plants you nurture and love.
I will tell you I had nothing to do with it, of course.

I will leave the broken pieces behind,
for you to pick up alone, after I am gone.

I must hurry to the church!
I will tell God I am there to help.

I wonder if God believes as easily as you,
my sweet angel?

 

by “dogkisses” 2009

All content on this page and in this blog is subject to A Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 United States License.

 

Thank you for visiting Dogkisses’s blog.