Thursday, November 26, 2015

It's So Screwed Up

TW got me to thinking on my last posting, I need to do a further examination on what is going on here regarding the SIL, and me.  Especia

lly me.  For this is about me, and blaming everyone around me is ending me up in trouble.

Well, first of all it hurts alot.  And I react badly when I am hurt.  Self-sabotage starts to happen.  And this is a very dangerous position for me to be in.

As much as I try to be all dignified and perfect, I know I can bring anyone down with the words that I use.  It was the way I was raised, I even feel like I raise eyebrows here on my blog.  That is the tendency to self-sabotage.

Now, I don't have grouchy moments for nothing.  I am quite pleasant, and people do like me.  I'm ok and loving and kind.  But when I get hurt, watch out.  Now, I don't know why that is.  I remember even when mother was abusing me, I would say nothing.  I can't figure out that part yet.

DH and I talked the other night about why we were fighting over his SIL.  "I did nothing to her", I told him.  I also told him that I deserved respect, but that part I know is not true, we don't get what we deserve, so we shouldn't expect it.

But he also told me, "No, you didn't do anything to her, but you said lots to me about it."  That is just terrible.  For why can't he even handle my authentic emotions?  I even asked him about that.  He said, "Well, you were doing a lot more than just expressing your emotions."  Now, that must be it, right there, the part where he feels I stepped out of line.

Now, I can't figure this whole thing out.  I was abandoned, when he went away to see them last summer.  I mean, WTF?

I remember the day he left to go on his trip.  He sat here a long time, and I was just being normal, I mean I wasn't doing anything wrong that day.  He sat here for the longest time, till I had to tell him that he had a long drive, why wasn't he leaving?  Could he have been waiting for me to get ready to join him?  The email left me out.  He did ask me to join him a couple of days prior to leaving.  Was he just expecting me to go?  Was he waiting for me?  What was going on?  He did not ask me to join him on the day of leaving, that I am sure of.  And we planned on going together, months before, that is until he got that email.

But just this past Sunday when they showed up at the door, I offered to serve them even.  To that, he called me a hypocrite.  What the heck does he expect me to do?

Bottom line is this.  I believe she sent that email and put it in his head that I was not going to join them on the trip.  A couple of days before the trip, she sent him another email that I was joining them. Then he asked me.  Now if that ain't a narc butt kisser, I don't know what is.

And I am not a narc pleaser, no way in hell I am.  They showed up at the door this weekend and I offered to serve them, and that seemed to cause a big rift.   Why?  Because I didn't join them on the trip when I was offered to at the last moment?  After being pushed aside?  Even asking if DH could join them on their walk?  Leaving me aside, ignoring me again?  And nothing was said to that.  But I am the bad guy?

My mother doesn't act this way.  She will include everyone.  Even my own SIL will include everyone.  The bullies in school did not ever include me.  The bullies would make me feel like I wasn't to join them, but be asked as a way of hiding their butts.  And no one protected me from that. As DH is not protecting me from this.

Here's the plan.  This is what I have got to do.  And it sucks.  I hate it.  I must pull my emotional resources together, and just treat him with unconditional love and respect.  Now when it comes to his SIL I will have to learn to understand that this is not going away.  I have to understand that.  And accept that.  I will no longer be calling her his booty call, or whore or tramp.  From now on, that will be out of my vocabulary.  I don't even like talking like that.  But I felt hurt, so that is how I retaliate, but that has got to change.

Yes, full authentic emotion is fine, when it is expressed in a safe atmosphere, I won't change that.  In fact, our spouses expect us to be open.  But here is the thing, and I hate this part.  I have to leave him with at least some room to take care of me.  That poses such a high risk that I am having a hard time with it.  Suppose he doesn't step up, and I have been left with no help?  I can easily be made the victim again.

High value vulnerability.  Just say it.  It is this priceless item, that I must exercise in order to have what I want.  I must show vulnerability and be totally ok with it.  When I get hurt, it is ok to show full authentic emotion.

Now, I'm going to tell you a secret.  We are to show full authentic emotion WITHOUT ANY BLAMING.  That is blaming of him.  He doesn't seem to mind me blaming his SIL, it is when he feels blamed things go badly.  But he wanted me to blame him for not being taken on the trip not her, so this part is kind of confusing. I know.

Showing full authentic emotion without blaming him, is hard.  It is very  hard.  I must focus on the deed that was done, not that I am blaming him for it.

I could say something like, "I was so hurt that day when I saw that email and felt so left out, that I highjacked the email and put it in my blog, so I could at least talk about it.  I didn't want to take it out on you.  I was so hurt."

I did something like that a while back, and it disarmed him.  We got to the point where we were arguing about it so much that he said, "I'm done talking about it."

Then I expressed my feelings.  I told him I felt bad, I felt sick..."  Well, basically just told him how I felt at present.and left everything else out.   It changed the dynamics of the whole evening, that I went and made that report on my relationship site, and everyone was fascinated by it.  It was a powerful moment, when all the bad stuff just "dissipated".  Also too, I felt better, for I got my feelings out in the right way.  I have said that before, stay in your own body, stay with your own feelings.  This works 100% of the time for me.

He is the type of guy where that if he does get angry, it is with good intentions.  I realize that now. I'm the ACON here, I'm the one with busted up emotions, he seems to have it all together.  But he can't deal with me in this way, I need to do what works.

I have never expressed to him fully what I really want.  Do I want him to not see his brother again? No, I don't want that.  I want for us to plan each and every outing we go on together.  I want to be considered.  So I am to just say that.  Just say it.  He doesn't know any better, he can't guess what I want, what my needs are, I have to express them.  When we were going together on that trip, before the email, I felt very forced to go, and he just expected me to go.  Something fell apart at that point.

But I am to say it when all my emotions are intact, and I can do it authentically, not as a way of retaliating, for that is the part that gets screwed up.  But fully and authentically, when I have my power back.  And not as a way of keeping him away from his family, I know that was never my intention, but he feels that way.  Now, if he feels that way from anything I am doing, I am to do something about that.

So I am to express fully how I feel about that email.  I am ashamed to say that I never done that. Should he just guess over my ranting what my feelings are?  And express how I would love for us to plan our vacation together from now on.  And just leave it at that.  You know, maybe nothing will come of it, and things might just keep going as they are going on, and that would be terrible.  But what is that?  That is fear.  I am fearful that if I be that vulnerable I would get stomped on.  Maybe I would be, there are no guarantees.  All I know is that he responds to actual vulnerability each and every time.  That if he is not, that is because there is something closed up, and I am not expressing fully.

A couple of weeks ago, he opened up facebook and my daughter had a picture of a kid crying like crazy.  He looked over at me and said, "That's Joanie."

What an asshole.  A jerk, a..... .  What was his intention?  To make me feel bad?  To tease me?  What was his intention.  This could have been him just being adorable and endearing but I would never see that.

All I can see are bad intentions.  For an ACON this is good, right?  That's not bad, its just the retaliation part that bad.  How I take it out on him, when his intention wasn't that.

Do I feel like he is putting his SIL's feelings before mine?  Darn right I do.  Even if I serve them, I am the hypocrite, and she looks like gold every friggin time.  He even accused me of being manipulative, and I would never be that.  I wouldn't even know the first thing about being manipulative.  I wasn't forcing him, I was just expressing, but he thinks I take it too far.

I don't know what to do.  Sometimes it feels like I'm running on empty, and I have to tell him what I feel and what I want in full authentic emotion and I would much rather take a frying pan to his head.

I'm really angry because of all the risks I have to take on getting hurt.  I am expected to trust.  Yes, he has proven to me that he responds to vulnerability, but I still feel scared.  But I also know that I will have a long trail to follow back before my vulnerability to mean a thing to him at this point.  He doesn't trust me.

Omg, why do I have to be the one to do the work to fix this?  Why me?  It is his own SIL, not mine, I didn't do anything wrong here, nothing.  I was mouthy, is all.

I get the feeling some people might be thinking that I am taking my past out on him.  But what about the email?  

Funny, how life does let us start again, but with the resources we have left intact from previous experiences.  If I want to be innocent in all this, then I must take responsibility for my own feelings. Every feeling must be expressed, all the way back, just to myself.

Yes, I am angry at mother.  She made me what I am.  Bullies in school, made me feel left out all the time.  I am hypersensitive to everyone judging me and leaving me out of things.  DH doesn't know that.  How could he?  No one treats him like that.  No one ever does.

Here's what I must do.  Feel all my feelings, going way back.  I thought I did that.  And I am doing that, but I won't live long enough to fully do that.  I don't feel like I will anyway.  But that is just an illusion.  We do get over things, I know that.  We do get past and we are able to move on.  Or do I just take my past experiences and make them a part of my life now.

Funny, how nothing is ever logical is it?  I can logically say that that crap from my past doesn't matter.  My first ex-husband used to leave me alone at home with small children so he could go out and party.  How does that feel?  I want to harass him on facebook over it.  He won't even remember, for I never told him about it.  So now, more than 20 years later I want him to suffer.

Things are getting so screwed up right now with writing this, that I can't even imagine what this looks like.

Just take the veneer of pain off and look at it logically.  How would I have felt about that email, if I was never hurt.  Shocked still?  I think I would have just thought she was stupid.  But mean and spiteful?  I mustn't ever forget that being an ACON gives me much more knowledge about narcissism than the others.  Plus too, I did feel horrible the last time I was there from her treatment.  That would have been valid.

Suppose as ACON's we know make people responsible for their behaviour.  She is a narc.  She has shown too many red flags not to be.  I see it.  I feel it way down.  I also sense some kind of game is afoot with me, for she has managed to make me out to be the bad guy in all this.

But how much was my responsibility?  How much?  I didn't go on that camping trip last summer, because I was plain out dis invited.  And DH doesn't get to play with me, and invite me at the last minute.  Was I protecting myself?  And not allowing my vulnerability to show?  What would vulnerability have given me in this case?

Never mind.  Who knows?  What played out was the result of me not expressing myself fully at any given time in our relationship.  Does fear rule me that much?  It did, but then I got tangled in the results of my fear, so badly that nothing makes sense anymore.

I have about nine months until next summer.  During that time I am to express to him that I want us to plan vacations together.  And if he says something like, "Well, I would rather we just go there."  I am to say, "Well, that is how I feel is all, and I don't like it any other way."  Just that.  And leave it.  If he is to say something along the lines how I just don't want to go because of SIL, I am to just say that maybe, but more that I would like us to do things together, and plan together.  If he goes on some kind of tirade, I am to understand that I am still having to deal with the past, and just keep on the road that I am on.

I will have my say.  About that email, about everything.  Eventually, it will all come out.  This is a faith thing, sort of, it can't be bought, it can only be earned.  I have to earn that right.  Heck if I do that he might even say that he was in the wrong about the trip without me even having to do much of anything.

That is a goal, that is a dream, a far off fantasy for someone like me.  It has never happened, I have never been treated like that.  And there are no guarantees that if I do everything right that it will work out that way.  To the engulfed daughter, there are no guarantees in life.  To the girl who stayed home all the time, and by mother's side, there are no guarantees in life.  And there is no protection from getting hurt.

But you will be fine.  You will survive regardless.

We enjoy being hurt sometimes.  We enjoy the feeling of someone doing us wrong.  There I said it.

But why?  It puts me in a place of justification.  It justifies me.  Makes me feel safe.  I don't let my vulnerabilities show, and he doesn't completely understand that I'm hurting, only sees that I am enjoying it.  Maybe.  But then I am only enjoying that feeling instead of feeling loved.  Which I authentically want, but I want is so bad, that I take it any way I can.  And the bad way is the easiest.

And come to think of it, it wasn't the email that bothered me so much.  It was him not wanting me to go, which I felt was because of the email.  But he said it was because of the way I acted 3 or 4 years ago when I did go.  But he ignored me, didn't pay any attention to me then.  But it was easy for me to feel that way, I was so scarred up.

So, I'm going to let this go for now.  It gets too screwed up the more I try to talk about it.  I'm just going to do what I said what I am going to do.  Face fear, be vulnerable, be authentic.


  1. “You wouldn't worry so much about what others think of you if you realized how seldom they do.”

    ― Eleanor Roosevelt

  2. ha ha, yeah, but if only Eleanor Roosevelt heard me, she would run. I hate the way I am sometimes, and just wish I could be pleasant at all times. I can't control it. I think it has something to do with the emotional resources, which run low, and I use a type of survival mechanism.

    I wish I could say that I just got angry, and say just deal with it, but it is not the way I like to be at all. I've been made painfully aware of myself, and it only lets in more narcs.

    For instance, and I have this great example. I was home for quite a few days and DH asked me why I didn't go anywhere. And I told him that its because I have a wee bit of a cold and people are treating me like I'm typhoid Mary. He said that no one is treating me that way, that is me just feeling that way. ha ha.

    But in a way, I'm hypersensitive to narcs this way. I can feel them out, and that is why I'm so sensitive. It's not like I have a bad temper, I'm just sensitive and lots of things irks me. Then the explosion happens. This I want gone, and just be sensitive to narcs is all. Is it that this is just a heavy weapon to wield or something?

    So anyway, lol, sorry, for the novel. I'm just tired, I just had a root canal, my daughter is having surgery tomorrow and needs a ride and we are having an ice storm for the next day. I'm losing it.

  3. You'll be fine Take two Vicodins and call me in the morning.

  4. He defends the SIL too much for my liking. I don't think loyalty is too much a thing to ask of a husband. At the very least he should deal with both on his own and not expect you to keep company with her whatsoever. Anyhow he should get it through his head, she's not your friend at all. I don't like what he said to you about the picture either. I don't why he is putting a SIL ahead of a wife. He must get she treats you bad and shouldn't force you keeping company with her.

  5. Trouble is, I wish I knew about this years ago. I can't seem to get it in his head. I mentioned the loyalty part, and he thinks he is being loyal to me, just that I am the one who is misinterpreting everything. She is so empty inside, can't even muster up a smile for me, and when I'm realizing it now, I noticed her husband, just as whipped as a man I ever saw. When he talked to me that day, I noticed he was very nervous, something was wrong. I was my charming self, It was a beautiful day, but something was off with everyone. Its like when mother was around. She spoiled the atmosphere and was toxic everywhere she went. But other people don't notice this.

    So when she invited DH to go on the walk and I didn't say anything, I don't know why no one else noticed how rude that was. No one noticed, its like she is that way all the time, and they have adjusted themselves and will be that way too. When I went to go sew, DH didn't leave me alone, somehow subconsciously something is going on with him.

    Ha ha. If I was just dating him, and this was to happen, I would have just went my own way. Now, I know he is being a big pain in the butt about this, but I'm not worried anymore. I like the idea of no contact. Now even with the leaving me out for even a walk, this will entitle me to permanent no contact. Even when they show up again. Double whammy of a narc, I thought they were more clever.

    Thanks Peeps, I hope you had a good Thanksgiving. Glad to see you back.

    1. Just noticed the picture part. Yeah, what was that? I know I have to accept that maybe I do cry sometimes and just make it all ok. That is the high value I must add.

    2. Oops, sorry, I think DH did notice, I got a clue in his behaviour. I could tell. But she was not called out on it. Now, if she was this wonderful, sweet, understanding, caring, wonderful SIL, then why not just remind her to include me? If she was so wonderful, kind, sweet, lovely, then surely she would have understood what a low down bitch she is.

    3. I would tell your husband when you choose her invites that leave me out, it is giving her more power and loyalty then me. I would tell him, you can go see your brother and if your brother is involved that's between you and him but I'm not going to have this woman disrespect me to my face anymore. Don't take invitations. One question I have too, is does your husband ever see his brother without wifey as a tag-long. She sounds like one of those narcs who has her husband on a leash.

      Yeah if she won't even fake smile you on the public front, that's not good. Yes people are always nervous around narcs. Sad to see they are all scared of her. I hate how everyone will do the bidding of these narcs always too afraid to stand up to them. They never have one iota of problems about harming the feelings of nice people.

      Yeah stay no contact with her. Silent treatment may serve you well here too. Ask your husband if he can see his brother ALONE. I get the feeling your DH knows she is treated you like garbage but giving in to his hen pecked brother and not wanting to "rock the boat" which gives the nasty narcs far more power.

      I hope you had a good Thanksgiving too. :)

    4. Yep you got it. One of those leashed husbands. He is definitely kept on a leash and in chains. Just that leaving me out? I mean, who in their RIGHT mind would even do that? Who would get away with it? I would have surely been called out on it if I did that. Actually, it would be a good way to test the waters. Just do what she does and watch what happens.

      And when hubby declined the walk, no one even asked me. No one. If that does not entitle me to no contact, I don't know what does.

      But anyway, I will not be talking to hubby about it anymore. I want to slow down my mouth, and watch what happens. If it get brought up, I'll declare my feelings, but that will be it. Hubby definitely doesn't want to rock the boat. I've even worked with narcs and they can keep a whole company under their thumb, even if they are just doing a simple job. A narc secretary did me in, once, where I worked as a technologist. Do not underestimate these buggers.

  6. People block out all of the bad stuff. They think this can't be happening, for who would do such a thing? For no reason? At a bible study a while back, I noticed the one narc there callously called down her husband for looking stupid right in front of a group of bible believing Christians. Even had everyone laughing at him. I could barely breathe, as the pins and needles went through my body.

    The SIL did the same thing the last time we were down there. I know I was not aware at the time, but I was freaked out, for she was being nasty to her own husband, he was having a hard time adjusting the tv. Talked to him like he was her slave or something. Rude, insensitive, mean, and DH just, well, he doesn't see anything wrong with that. That is abuse she does. Isn't it? She is an emotional abuser.

    That last visit I went there, made me sick. Even shooing us out early so she could mop the floor, was a sadistic way of showing she was in control. We left early that day, and they stayed till the next day. I mean what was up with that ploy?

    The stuff they pull goes completely unnoticed by the others, and I am utterly amazed. I can't get over how people can be that dense. Nope, the more I try to talk sense to DH, the worse it gets. He even asked me, "Why would she do something like that for? What reason?" Ha.

    1. There is something about narcs where they seem to bring spiritual blindness to people. its creepy. Your husband seems to think she is far more innocent then she is or too afraid to "get in the middle". I do know these narcs always get their way and its sickening. This reminds me of when my mother could literally abuse people in front of each other and no one would protest [well outside of me] Funny how that works, everyone is so afraid of being the next target they go scrambling to please the narcissist. I watched my own mother be rude to her husband. I mean why does he put up with that? She is constantly demanding and criticizing. This guy had money in his own right. I wonder why he chooses to put up with it. Was he that lonely?

    2. Yep, even the brother has a big job, with the oil fields. Makes the big bucks, and is a little doggy to his "wife". I don't know what it is. I am so angry they have this much control, and if we stand up to them, we are the bad ones. I treat people with respect, and hubby knows that, he knows that, but when it comes to this creature, I am dirt in his eyes. His dear wonderful SIL. The biggest fraud there ever was.

      I can easily see your mother like that. And him putting up with it. How come I can see that? I shouldn't.

  7. I'm gonna ask you this again, just "Yes" or "No" questions: Do you trust your husband? Has your DH ever cheated on you? With anyone including SIL? Do you believe he would cheat on you?

    1. Yep, I do trust him. He wouldn't cheat. Not ever. I don't ever have to worry there. The one thing that does scare me though is that he got rid of his last wife.

    2. If you feel comfortable telling us, how did he get rid of his last wife? Did he split up with her or tell her to leave? Are you worried you could be next on the list if you do not "please" him?

    3. I only found out a few months ago. He chased her out, forced her out. She was being mean and bossy and he had enough. I'm not worried about pleasing him, just doesn't seem to worry me. I'm not sure. Some part of my brain does think that he could easily get rid of me, and then I'm not worried. I'm never bossy and domineering. If anything I am too emotional and helpless. He is very good to me, except when it comes to SIL, I don't know why that is. Its so confusing. He never even gives me a hard time. Gives everything to me. Goes out of his way to give everything to me. I don't get SIL.

      It was a good thanksgiving last month. I'm not American. lol

  8. Reading this Post I feel I'm facing a wall of text containing a tsunami of feelings, a paucity of facts, a lack of context and a drip feed of specifics-that's why I'm asking for clarification.
    "He even accused me of being manipulative." In what way did he say you were being "manipulative?"
    "I was abandoned when he went to see them last summer." How were you "abandoned?"
    "As DH is not protecting me from this." Protecting you from what?
    "I have to leave him with at least some room to take care of me." Take care of you how? What do you want/need protection from?
    "I felt very forced to go...Something fell apart at that point." What was that "something?" In what way did it fall apart?
    "If I want to be innocent in all this..." "Innocent" of what? "Innocent" as opposed to guilt? Are you on Trial here?
    "We enjoy the feeling of someone doing us wrong." Because if "someone does us wrong I feel justified." Justified how?

    Joan, you really packed a LOT in this Post. I see you working so hard and I want to honor your work, not rush through it. I don't have any context to be able to comment on the Facebook picture and DH's observation, "That's Joanie." I know it's important or you wouldn't have mentioned it but I don't understand how, or what his observation meant to you. If you could please clarify these points I'd appreciate it. Thanks!

    1. He is afraid of what would come out of my mouth. Of course, I am too, I know I have one heck of a smart mouth. I kind of pride myself on that one, hehe. And that what he thinks manipulative is. And the fact that I wanted to serve them sandwiches and coffee, that looks bad, for he knows how I feel about them. He is wondering if I am up to something. I have screamed obscenities about her, to him.

      I felt like I was abandoned. He didn't know or care what I would be up to while he was gone. Didn't even ask, just left.

      He is not protecting me from the narc abuse. He just goes along with her and what she says and he expects the same of me. I retaliate just once, and insist that he talk to her about having to invite me along too, is a no go with him. He doesn't see it that way, and to him these things don't matter. I never told him about her bullying me the last time we were there. She wanted to talk down to me, and say that I was not the proper bushwoman. So everytime she does something narcish, I have to take it. He won't stand up to her. Won't even let me stand up to her. It just puts me in a state of victimhood.

      If I allow him the chance to see that I'm hurt, then maybe he will do something about it. He has responded to true vulnerability and has proven that to me. But I'm just covering it all up with the anger. Underneath the anger is hurt, and he can't see it. I think he feels I'm dangerous when angry. And maybe I am. Bullied kids are dangerous and can pack a punch. The aggression must be felt deeply by me, then I can get to the hurt part. He's controlling me and trying to stop me, and trying to protect others.


  9. The day they were planning to go, I was just expected to join him, and not asking me first. That was before the email of me getting excluded. Then I was expected to go, Anyway, early on in the summer we were both going, but I didn't want to, I wanted to do something else, or just stay here. A little cabin with no electricity for the week does nothing for me. lol But not even that, I felt bullied by her already. But I know he wanted to see his brother and that is why I decided to go anyway. Still I felt forced, and he must have picked up on that.

    Well, if I want to be innocent, then I have to stop fighting back. I don't want anyone to have stuff to use against me. The narc is winning this way. Everytime I retaliate she wins. I don't know how they do it.

    That part of being justified, I'm not sure I understand, myself. From the reading I've been doing, all I know is that we have to stop enjoying the feeling of betrayal. Its hard to understand, I know, but I do enjoy it in a way. Its strange. I'll have to read up on that some more. But the point is, that I have to stop it in order to achieve a healthy level of actual and authentic feelings.

    About that Facebook picture. I'm not sure if he was trying to insult me, or was trying to be endearing. I liked it in a way for it means that I am becoming more in tune with my emotions and he is acknowledging that. He can see that. In a way, he was trying to be cute and endearing. Its how I interpreted it. Thinking back on it now, I should have said, "Wow, thanks for saying that." I know that we don't want to be as children, but its good at times to channel the child in us, in order to feel again. Its actually very good. Just like if you were to call a wanna be scientist an egghead, they would love it. But don't say that to an actual scientist, lol, they would not like it.

    I hope that makes sense. I know I go on feelings a lot. I can take that as a compliment. It used to be that I would try to think what the other person would want to hear and would expect of me, now its all me, its all I ever do. I make it a rule to cry everyday, and feel everyday when its appropriate. But something about this SIL doesn't sit right with me. And with DH. I never got the chance to properly know him, everything with us happened so fast. 2 dates after he was face to face with my sociopathic family, never once, did we decide how we would be together. And if we would even plan holidays together. I need to get this through to him now, and I've been telling him, here and there, how I feel about things. What I want. What I need. Till he gets it. Its very hard to change the ball game now, but I'm trying. Otherwise mother wins.

    I hope that helps to make sense. I am glad you asked me to clarify TW, you are a very caring woman. If I were to say that I am being targeted I would say that I am. And she is using DH as a monkey. Any woman in her right mind would have insisted and made sure I was on that vacation with them. She would have chased me down, and sent me emails, and made sure I was going. And not depend on just expecting it of me. But she wanted it this way. And even going on that walk, the other weekend even, that alone tells me right there she is bound and determined to cause me trouble. Picture this, 4 people in a room and a couple decided to go for a walk, and then the wife asks the other husband to go too, leaving out the other wife. Of course, I know it might look like that if she invites him, she has invited me too. But she stood up and looked directly in his face and asked if HE wanted to join them.

    Its that realm of plausible deniability that is working for her.

    But, Omg, I have a new plan in mind. I believe it is working already. I'll have to post on that soon.

  10. After reading all this again, I can say that on the very first trip, I went on out there she could tell I was prey, so I bet she is trying to figure out what is going on. She can't figure this out. I am aware, and she has not figured that one out yet.

    1. I mean, that's what it looks like when I read through everything.

  11. All I want is to go into my grave having this all figured out. I know that is a very lofty ambition. But to an engulfed child who was bullied constantly at home and about it would be the ultimate. I understand a lot so far. I know I make DH look bad, and thank god he does not read my blog, and I will make sure he never does. He doesn't like to read or write, its tedious for him. So I understand that. I also understand too, the dynamics of narcissistic households and how they play out and how he is caught up in it. I would defend no other monkey. Just this one, cause I am committed. He does come from a normal family, how this narc made her way in, I don't know.

    Perhaps it is in the trusting nature, the fact they live so far away, no one really knows what is going on there, so everyone just assumes everything is fine. All the crap? Well, then they can easily deny for the brother accepts it so why not? But I have changed that for DH. I created the waves, and he is unable to tolerate that. For I am the only one who denies the humanity in SIL.

    I will put down my sword, and I will not attempt again to explain it to him again, for it is futile. I have plenty of people to talk to about it here. I still remember the very first day I highjacked everyone's blog, and I felt like I had found my people. Now I highjack my own blog and everyone else's. I have constantly been bullied. Still am. Not done talking about it, probably never will. But now I have found people who listen. Thank you and forever I am grateful.

  12. Thanks, Joan. I have a crazy busy day today so I'll be back tomorrow-just wanted to stop in this morning and let you know I'm not blowing you off! See you (all) tomorrow-

  13. OK, my day just got blown up so I'm not going anywhere!
    Thanks for taking the time to try to clarify things a bit more. I do care, Joan and from a larger perspective I'm also aware that couples who have been previously married then divorce and re-marry increase the likelihood exponentially of the successive marriage also ending in divorce. And that makes sense: We all bring our past experiences into the present relationship especially those which are unremediated. And because they play out in the context of the current marriage, our past is made present. Often the presenting problems are not just about what's happening now. That confuses/clouds the current perceptions of the partners about what ails.
    The use of highly emotionally charged words like "abandonment," "forced," "justified" etc. speaks to a person who is an Emotional Reasoner: FEELINGS ARE FACTS.<The implications here are huge. This colors completely how that person perceives the behavior, imputes motivation, conceptualizes conflict etc. of or with their partner etc. It creates an inherent confirmation bias. For example, "I FEEL abandoned" is entirely different from "I AM abandoned." Neither good nor bad, but entirely different in meaning.The first is a Feeling, the second is a Fact. This can easily create a Commuication Issue but Communication is secondary to the underlying dynamics of "Feelings are Facts"/Emotional Reasoning. The more highly charged we feel emotionally, the less logically we are able to view ourselves and others, and the harder it is to see clearly what's going on because we have become so caught up in our FEELINGS the FACTS get lost in a whirlwind of emotion. In addition, that confirmation bias means we will "see" any thing our partner says/does through an "Ah AH! See! Just confirms what I was feeling! I knew it!" <No, you FELT it.
    I was certain this whole trip/vacation issue would resurface because it was never resolved to begin with, OK? And you don't want to spend the rest of your marriage fighting the same battle- And you sure don't want to end up divorced either ;) So we're gonna take a trip down memory lane here, OK? Please do NOT let me put words into your mouth-speak up if I don't have the Facts straight.

    Initially you agreed to go on vacation with DH to his brother and SIL's camp. You didn't express any reservations so plans were made to do this. As the day for departure was approaching and before the email, what were you feeling about going on the trip? Not why-that really doesn't matter right now (we will get to that later) and I'm afraid if we go down that rabbit hole we'll remain stuck there and the goal over all is to get unstuck ;) So, BEFORE the email how were you feeling in the days or the week before you were to leave? Remember, feelings are neither good nor bad, they just are-No judgements at all, OK?

  14. I feel like I was tired of being married to the town whore so I divorced her.

  15. Sorry I posted that and realized it might be construed as tacky since you guys are in the middle of a serious discussion.

  16. Its ok, Q, you can say whatever you want to. Feel free to do that anytime. I know you would not be tacky at all.

    TW. I was feeling horrible about going on that trip. And I felt selfish for feeling that way for this was his brother he wanted to see. Kind of felt tied up with no choice. Camping is not my thing, not the rough style type. Oh, and they made these plans, and I was just the tag a long. Not the status I wanted, I wanted to be included in those plans as well, not just go. So I felt angry too. Angry and I felt guilty for it. It was a complicated time.

    1. Thanks for the pass. Remember who taught me about boundaries. Actually no one taught me at all which is part of my problem.

  17. So you felt "horrible" and "selfish" for not wanting to go, having "no choice" in addition to feeling "angry and guilty."
    Above I wrote "Initially you agreed to go on vacation with DH to his brother and SIL's camp." <Is that a Yes or a No?

  18. I can tell you what I like about wife number two that I never got from #1. #1 would set little traps for me and watch me walk into them so she could blast me for it. #2 would tell me up front what bothered her and if I continued on my course like The Titanic to the ice berg it was my decision and I couldn't say I didn't know she was going to get mad. Men don't mind doing the right thing as long as we know what it is. We can be pretty clueless when it comes to things that are so obvious to women, so don't assume he is a mind reader.

  19. Yes, I did agree to go with him.

    Ah, yes, I agree Q. And I believe that is part of my problems too. Darn it, to have a do over, 5 million dollars will never give me that.

  20. I think the girls at the daily strength have a used time machine they might want to sell.

  21. I would do anything for a time machine, lots and lots would change.

  22. You were feeling horrible, selfish, angry, guilty and having no choice and agreed to go on the vacation with DH. Again, prior to the email did you talk to DH about feeling like this? These are some strong feelings, Joan.

  23. I remember only telling him that I want to be included in making the plans. He didn't do much regarding that, the plans were already made, and I was to go, said I would go, we were trying to decide what to do about the cat, then the email came.

  24. I know you are the type of woman that wants emotions that are generated from within. That is you don't want to have to lead him around with a trial of bread crumbs. It's OK to lead him ......just lead him where you want him to be cuz he might not find the right place on his own. Always remember you are dealing with the clueless sex. And I mean clueless to a power of 10.

  25. I know that men don't always say what they mean, and that can be frustrating. We women have to judge by actions, never words. Today, he wanted to purchase a lottery ticket and consulted me first. It was strange, he never did that before, and I don't care about that, but I had to show I cared about that, in order to help him understand what I want. So he is going to start consulting me about silly things, I hope that means he will consult me about the rest. The important things. So we do have a start. We are learning.

    So I am trying to be more verbal about what I want. I know men sometimes are clueless, mostly are, lol. I'm just used to not talking about what my wants and needs are. So if I just speak what I want, then he might get it. Unfortunately, that will never work when he is dealing with a narc. I just know that. They get treated like royalty, and I don't. I just have to try to find a way to live with that.

  26. OK, "...then the email came." How long before you were planning to leave on vacation did the this email come? Was this email sent to you?

  27. We were planning on going together for at least a month possibly two months. The email was sent to him, directed only to him. Talked only of him going.

  28. So you and DH had plans made to go together and meet up with BIl and DIL at camp anywhere from 4 to 8 wks. before the vacation. How did you happen to see the email that was "sent to him"? And what exactly did the email say that was "directed only to him. Talked only of him going?" Who was the email from?

  29. It was at a time I was sitting next to him when he was going through his email.

    This was the exact email, leaving out the names:

    So ### and I will be off Friday Aug 21 till we'd Sept coming to camp??

    planning on going ,will be leaving on the 27th , leave me a list of what you want me to bring , have to work on sept 2

    I'm not sure I got most of it covered...maybe stuff for sandwiches if you want to eat some fishing any snacks you want..we always bring to much anyway...see ya soon

    The email was from SIL. The middle one was from him. The other two from her.

  30. How did you happen to see the email that was "sent to him?"
    One more time: Think, Joan. Go back there.

    I get this beyond what I can convey especially in this medium, the Internet. Please believe me when I tell you, I get it. And it's OK. And I do care. And you do matter. And how well I know what it means to live in a place where Feelings Are Facts.


    How did you "see the email that was sent to him."


  31. I'm not sure what you mean. He opens his email, I was right next to him. We were having our morning coffee. His email opens to the last thing sent to him. But I'm not sure if my feelings about the matter counts at all. Right after that, I was disallowed, by him, to go. Feelings weren't the issue at all.

    His email opens to the last thing sent. Not sure if he expected me to see it. It just happens to open that way. But, you know, I didn't see the process of the emails, just the last part where the three emails came together. Just at the end.

    The email mentions just three people. The walk she wanted to go on, while they were here, was just intended for the three of them.

    She is trying to f*** with me. She probably never thought I would see the emails. I get that. So I really don't get that part. But I really believe she is trying to f*** with me.

    I'm glad you care TW. Its been one heck of an emotional time for me, too much for an engulfed daughter really. I appreciate your input.

  32. OK, initially at the time you wrote your Blog Post about this event, you stated you "hacked into his email." This is how you saw that particular email.
    Can you help me understand this? There's a world of difference between "sitting next to" and "hacking into.."

    IMO, your first three sentences in this Post capture exactly what the problem is very succinctly. Very insightful observation, Joan.

  33. Oh. Well, I was reading it next to him, then after he left for the day, I went in and stole it. I know, its crazy, and I was feeling crazy. What I mean by hacking, is that his email is a desktop icon I just have to click on. I never do that, never did it before and haven't done it since then.

    I know blaming everyone around me is making it hard to see what is going on. I really don't want to blame her. I would prefer if she and I could be friends. I don't want to blame him either, I would prefer it if we didn't have this problem and everyone could be friends. That would be my biggest wish.

    It may be all my adrenaline going crazy, maybe not. But no one is hurting me now and we haven't talked it about it in a long time. I managed just the other day to tell him that I would prefer that we both decided where we would go on holidays. He didn't say anything. So we will see what will happen.

    It is tough, so I am having a hard time believing that someone didn't do something to instigate trouble. But it is about time that I told him how I really feel about things, be completely open. That is what the whole thing has made me aware of. The protocol is supposed to work, authentic, vulnerable, be high value, but in the face of narcissism, I'm not sure if it is going to work. And at this point it will be hard for me to believe she is human. But what about the walk she wanted the 3 of them to go on? That was simply horrible to say the least. Even if she felt I was mad at her, and was trying to avoid me, why the heck even come here for? To make me feel like a loser? Nah, something is got to be up with that.

    But I can see what you are saying TW.

  34. A few lessons I learned...better late than never:
    *What other people think of me is none of my business.
    *Anger is just a symptom. Sit with it. Metaphorically hold it in your hands like a ball. Look at it from every angle and discover the source. The source of the anger leads to the cure.
    *Never ever react. Always respond and take as much time as you need before you respond. Then, rehearse before you respond or, if necessary, deliver your response in writing.
    *If you haven't already, seek professional help. It's enormously liberating to share your thoughts with someone who will not judge or share them.

  35. Hi Mulderfan. I do sit with anger. I know I sometimes feeling like a five year old kicking my feet, feeling horrible, not understanding anything, it is the worst feeling. I know I'm angry at everyone here, and can't seem to control it. Not that I should control it, but still feeling lost when the people around me seems to get it, and they are not telling me. And another thing I don't understand is why do I get angry, seeing as I was the engulfed child, I should be never getting angry, it makes no sense.

    The source of my anger was that f*#king email, told I wasn't going to be going, by him, then the ignorance of the walk she wanted to go in, that blatantly left me out. So it was the email. Why people can't write properly, is beyond me, I'm the one from the crazy upbringing, and here I am surrounded by idiots. But I believe in authenticity, and that doesn't include blaming. So I have to keep that in mind.

    I'm afraid the therapy will make the entanglements worse. As I try to explain this, they won't understand, and just lead me down a trail that isn't going to help. Relationships have always been hard for me, any type of relationship, even working relationships. Tormenting thoughts, I'm always afraid of people. I'm not crazy, I just don't know a lot of things, and that takes me down some pretty treacherous ideas of how I see reality.

    I appreciate the patience of people online. Wow, I have not one person call me down for being nuts. I'm stuck here, and everyone is kind. I might even be wrong about the whole matter, just I can't even allow myself to feel that I might be wrong, and still everyone is so patient. Not saying that ACON's would call me nuts, but even the ashats are letting me be. With that, I feel that I will get the answers, I will be calm again, this is just another process.

  36. The email is likely not the original source of your anger.
    If a therapist leads you or doesn't understand, then walk away and try another one.I rattled through three before I hit the jackpot with the 4th. A good therapist is a teacher who helps you discover the skills to help yourself.
    Always remember, the only person you can change is yourself.
    I'll tell you what my shrink told me, "You're not crazy. You're stressed out because you're surrounded by people who really are crazy."
    I'm a member of AA and a Buddhist group. Both meetings are places of safety for me and have provided me with people I can rely on to be there for me any time of the day or night.
    Venting to Q and TW via email has very likely saved my life!

  37. I did have a good therapist one time, who told me I had PTSD, that I wasn't crazy, and she sent me to do exposure therapy. To do weird things in public, till I had convinced myself that not everyone was not going to beat me up. It did work for awhile but with time, I was back in the same boat I originally was in.

    It is very hard to find good therapy, and in my area, there is not very much. Would have to travel far south. I did try to tell someone from my church once, a nice couple who I started to trust. Their advice was to start by forgiving my mother. I mean, lol, that was before I realized that I wasn't supposed to tell anyone about my nutty family, which I learned from Peeps. And Smakintosh. Absolute Christians with the bonafide ability to understand this stuff.

    And of course I was always oppressed by bullies, starting from early gradeschool. And at home, I was the constant source of supply for mother. She even told me that she owned me, that I was her property even. She spent money on me that she didn't have, and bragged about this to everyone, making everyone turn on me, adults even, even at a very young age. I don't remember mother leaving me out of things though, so that is what doesn't make sense. Mother hurt me badly, threw me to the wolves even, but never left me out. She didn't have to, the bullies did that.

    With mother you lived under the gun. She was mercurial and dangerous, even a family had to move away that lived next to us even, for the smear campaigns. The only house next to us, that stayed vacant for a very long time. So I always have a bit of tension when dealing with narcs, even nowadays. I feel it.

    So when an email like that comes, it is a sign for me to back off. She wants her way with DH, show off her boobs and stuff, let her have it, otherwise I can't contemplate the otherwise. Doesn't have to be a narc, just anyone, just in case.

    Thanks MF. I totally get that part now. It makes sense. You never messed with mother, don't even try. And I do this with anyone, just in case.

  38. I find saying "fuck 'em" is really helpful. When not a single fuck is given, you will be free.
    BTW Not all Christians dish out the forgiveness crap. Rev Renee at was another life saver for me. Reading her stuff was like looking in a mirror. She kicks ass as a real life friend too!

  39. I never bought the forgiveness crap, even before. It just didn't work. This stuff about forgiving being a choice we just make, is impossible. We don't make choices as much as we think we do. It is all emotional. I like Rev. Renee, she makes all of this possible. Her writing I find so comforting, and knowing that God does understand.

    Yes, "fuck 'em" does help a lot. Mother was very mean, just wanting to be mean, for no reason at all. It was fun to mess with my mind. I know a lot of my behaviours now are mainly coping mechanisms, survival techniques I used to rely on because they worked. Anger might not be the coping mechanism, but it is where the truth lies, for I had anger, even though I followed what mother said. I get angry when... Hey, I should be writing a post something like that. List all the anger spots. Looking at the anger tonight is not letting me sleep. So I just let myself be angry, angry over whatever.

  40. For me, the root cause of my anger, was that I was denied parents, especially a mother, who lacked the basic animal instinct of nurturing and protecting their young. A mother who could watch her husband beat her son unconscious and order the other two kids to join her while she finished eating her dinner.
    For years, I was like, "Wow, if my OWN parents don't love me, I must be the world's biggest fuck up." Still sneaks up on m now and then!
    Then, I finally began to accept that the fault lies with them not with me. They are totally incapable of loving anyone but themselves. They didn't love us. They OWNED us and unlike other parents who WANT their kids to become independent, they wanted to keep right on owning us.
    When I was down there helping the old man while my mother was dying, who did the idiot turn on and spew filth all! The one person willing to do the heavy lifting and now, after shooting himself in the foot, he has no one because he was convinced I only did it to get his money and make him look foolish (like he needed my help).
    Now, in my mind, there can be absolutely no question about how thoroughly messed up my parents are and as my shrink kept trying to make me understand, I'm not nuts THEY are!
    I'm no longer angry. When I think of them I don't feel love or hate. I feel nothing...zilch. I didn't shed a tear when my mother died and for that I feel no guilt.

    Here's the way I look at it now. I made it out alive, lead a happy fulfilling life and that makes ME fucking awesome!

  41. That's terrible. No one can see this, I too was denied normal parents. My father might have been a good person, but he did not have the strength to deal with mother, nor could he ever protect us. I still remember looking at my hand one day, a little hand, and hearing my mother how she was always going to protect me, that she would never do dirt to me. Not ever. I was very little, but somehow, I can actually remember, I never believed her, but I trusted her anyway. Because I had to, there was no choice. If I could go back to that day looking at my little hand, I would be a different person to this day.

    Trust, it is everything. The innocence of a child is put in the hands of a monster, and this all goes unnoticed by the world. Mother was the type of monster that had the respect of everyone, that is how dangerous she is. And everyone just let her be. As crazy as it sounds, I am angry at myself for being forced to trust her.

    So trust is everything. And people ruin it, then just stand there and expect you to trust them some more. Especially if you are a targetted source of supply, it is like its your job or something. And when I pull out of that targetted source of supply role, it makes me feel badly for I am not being good. I'm bad, and well, that's when I feel frustrated and angry.

    I don't really feel anything towards mother, its the role I had to play that's got me angry. The role I feel that I still must occupy, but I shouldn't do that for its wrong. But I got stuck in because I was born into it. So its my lot in life or something. But I know all that is wrong, so that's why I'm mad.

  42. One of the hallmarks of dysfunctional families is rigidity. Very early on we're assigned roles and for the remainder of our lives those roles are rigidly enforced. I was the family caretaker, responsible for running the household and making everyone happy. To fulfill my obligations I became a people-pleasing doormat. As I grew older and even moved away from home, I never strayed far from my assigned role and put pleasing my parents ahead of everything else in my life. It very nearly cost me my marriage. It wasn't until my late husband and I ended up with a marriage counselor that things started to become clear to me.

    Still, it took me many more years to completely break the mold. "Mold" is a great word to use because that is exactly what my parents had done to me. They had molded and conditioned me for decades before I recognized what had happened.

    You're not stuck nor is it your lot in life but you are the only one that can break you out of your assigned role. Not easy when you've been conditioned for so long.

    I was angry at myself because I didn't "see" what they had done. I also felt stupid because I had a lot of difficulty not reverting, over and over and over to my old people-pleasing doormat role.

    There were lots of periods of no-contact and lots of relapses until I finally "got" it. As you know, even with all the knowledge I had gained over the years, I thought I could handle being around my parents and I was wrong. IMO I needed one final relapse so that I could finally turn my back on my 96 year old father and leave him alone, not caring what people think or even wondering how he's doing. DONE is a great place to be!

    If you're lucky like me, one day your abusers will do something so outrageous, you will be left with no choice other than turning your back on them forever.

  43. Yeah, its that role thing. Someone can walk all over me and I just take it, but stew about it anyway. I mean, that is really crazy. It takes a lot of work to pull out of that, facing fear, that's why I can't even stick up for myself. Its aggravating, its hard and I get angry too, for just being put in that position. I'm like a trained animal. When something like that happens to me, I have to be careful not to swing too far, and get really angry and steamy, which it makes it harder, for the other person just gets put on the defensive. And they win. And I look bad.

    Yah, I'm moldy, ha ha. My ex was always about telling me to take the high road in each situation. I don't desire conflict, yet it always happened, and he always looked to me as being the culprit. I know some might say that is because it was always obvious, for I was always the one in conflict, but now I know more about the target thing. I mean it all starts when I'm not doing anything to hurt anyone.

    Its like I'm walking quietly down the street and a giant gorilla grabs a hold of me, and I don't know what to do, I'm stuck. For I don't have the skills to fight like hell for my life. Its hard to explain. And everyone just looks at me and calls me a dumbass for putting up with it. And in relationships, everything is hard, I must express, I must communicate directly all the time. And when something screws up, I don't know what happened. Just that it went bad, and everyone just stands there, and thinks I'm weird.

    But I remember never being allowed to stand up for myself, and told I was wrong for doing so. That it was bad, and it made me bad. What does that do to anyone but make them a doormat?

    I get angry too, when normal people look at me like I'm weird, but if they were me, they'd be in an institution for life, for I believe this was mother's goal. She hated me, but pretended to love.

    One of the biggest rules from my relationship group online, is actions, actions, actions. Always look at his actions, and you can practically even forget what he is saying. Words don't mean anything, what they say this minute, is just a feeling, and they might change it. But its actions always.

    But I was taught the opposite. I was taught that even if someone was bashing me over the head they could still love me. So I trusted everyone except myself.

    So I don't even care about mother. Not one single bit. Just the stuff I learned from being a target and set me up for life, I am totally pissed about.

    So I backed off when I saw that email, seeing that he didn't make one single move to correct me, says a lot. All I had to do in that situation was just tell him I felt hurt and I wish I didn't see the email. Then he would have showed me with his actions. I didn't do that, all I did was put him on the defensive.

    When they get together, they flirt like 2 people in a bar. I know this has nothing to do with me, for this has gone long in his last marriage. The dynamics in his last marriage, I don't understand. His brother is very tolerant of it too.

    But not me. Not authentically. It makes me feel unloved. I could have expressed it in a very real and raw way, and knowing him the way I do, I believe it would have stopped. Even after 20 plus years of flirting.

    But I don't do things normally, especially when I'm up against stress. I revert back to my old ways. I know I have to think before I act, but its not always possible.

    Oh and mother does things that are so outrageous all the time. Everyone sees it, but its normal for her. Still your mother, that's what I was told. But I have a funny way to look at that. Suppose I was a testtube baby. Would the testtube be my mother? And that testtube protected me better, for without it, I would have been spilled out and dried up.

  44. I was always considered weird and always felt like I was on the outside looking in. Now that I've embraced my weirdness I have more friends and acceptance than I ever have in my life. Weird is not a negative, doesn't make us serial killers, etc. just makes us unique. Everyone is weird/unique in some way but when we embrace it and celebrate it as a strength rather than a weakness things begin to change.
    Guess I lucked out. I married a guy whose mother was a narcissist bitch and his dad was a drunk. Along the way, we figured out that two broken people found each other and the broken pieces fit together to form a whole. Neither one of us knew how to communicate our feelings and it took a lot of work to figure that out. MY biggest problem was my inability to trust him. Everyone in my life who should have loved and supported me unconditionally had abused me instead and I carried that with me into my marriage. Didn't help that once he moved from being my BF to being my husband, my parents kept crapping all over him and trying to break us up. Instead of being happy for me they just wanted their doormat back.
    A couple of years ago, during my last phone call with my NGC brother, he said he just wanted his sister back. I told him to go to Walmart where he could get a cheap doormat for under $10.

  45. Yeah, I guess its good to be weird. And because of the problems we have, and we do screw up because of it, we shouldn't care what anyone thinks. Nowadays, if I could have learned one lesson that I could have had in the past it would have been that one. If someone was treating me horribly, the more I would try to please them, puke.

    With my guy, he did grow up in a loving home. They didn't have much money, they were poor, so his mother cooked good and sewed. I can't even imagine what that is like. To not be attacked at every corner? To not be treated like a possession to abuse? And he can't imagine otherwise.

    But I don't have issues with trust with him. I don't like when he gives his attention to someone else. It makes me feel ugly. My ex was always commenting on tv actresses, that they are beautiful, it always made me feel ugly, but I never told my ex how I felt. He would have only made me feel worse. But I learned that's ok to feel jealous, and tell a spouse that. But at one time, I thought that kind of vulnerability is wrong. That I had no right to my own feelings, that feelings were wrong. I don't think talking would work with my ex. But with my new fella, he might not always like my vulnerability, but it does work with him. Even when he does hate my feelings, and struggles with it, it always works out. I'm sorry to hear your mother crapped all over your husband. Its good that you and he worked it out.

    As far as my family members go, not one of them approaches me any more. We have all gone our separate ways, but my sister cares for mother, only those two are in contact.

    Its hard to be normal all the time. I'm glad for my alone time. When I'm not alone, I have to transcend all my thoughts, and that is hard.

    I don't know why that attention to others makes me feel ugly. I was not the pretty girl in high school, so maybe it has something to do with that. I feel ignored too, when SIL is around. Its hard to make him even listen to me when she is around. I don't feel any need to distrust him, he's not like that. She always rolls her eyes when I'm around, and I think really resents me, for I am different from his ex. So basically, I feel ugly, hurt, scared. Is ugly a feeling? I guess for me it is.

  46. I just realized the feeling for ugly is actually, HUMILIATED. Now that is what mother trained me for.

  47. For the record both of my parents crapped on my husband.
    Spending our lives being made to feel "less than" might have been the source of our humiliation.
    Reading some of your comments, I'm reminded of something I learned in this great recovery group I belonged to. One night a guy talked about "The One Third Rule". I'd never heard of before but now it comes in quite handy. Here goes:
    Regardless of what you say, do or look like, 1/3 of the people you meet will like you, 1/3 will hate you and as for the other 1/3...they don't give a shit either way.
    Applying the rule to your SIL, she was probably bound to dislike you regardless. Applying the rule to yourself, just don't give a shit.
    A bit like you, if I sensed someone didn't like me, my conditioning would kick in and I'd go into people-pleaser mode which inevitably led to doormat status. Now I just kinda shrug it off because the same guy that taught me the 1/3 rule told me if I don't like being a doormat I should get up off the fucking floor.

    When I met him 8 years ago that guy had just served 18 months for stealing money from his great aunt to feed his alcohol/gambling addiction. Even though he eventually turned his life around and made restitution, no one in his family ever spoke to him again. I thought I was too good to be in a group with crack heads, gamblers, boozers, you name it. I gained more wisdom there than I have anywhere else because we were all broken and felt like we belonged.

  48. A therapist told me that one time, that some people just won't like me. I think she forgot to add the don't give a shit part, and that was the part that I needed more. I think she said to just not worry about what others think of me. I really needed her to be more raw. But she was the cream of the crop of far as my therapists went.

    I learned in relationships that we just can't be in pleasing mode. We need to just tell our partner how we feel about something, but no blaming, and leave it at that. But with my ex, there was constant put downs from him, then its look at this beautiful actress. Our parents really set us up for this. In a normal "I'm enough" state, it is easy to pick up on abusers.

    And I always do feel like I'm "less than". This is very hard stuff to try to get over. It starts with logic but needs to settle in our emotions. I wonder when that glorious event will occur. But it has in some ways. Its starting to. It starts with just expressing myself, making myself heard, growing a voice. Without going crazy, and these are the types of skills our parents were supposed to teach us. Oh, and if we are not heard at first, then that is the other person's issue, not mine.

  49. The easy part is "getting" what was done to us on an intellectual level. I'm guessing you're like the rest of us ACONS and have researched what happened and how we can fix it but making the changes we need to make within OURSELVES is where the real work begins.
    I liken it to standing on the sidewalk, knowing you MUST get to the other side of the road. Nothing will happen until you step off the curb and start putting one foot in front of the other. Even baby steps are better than no steps at all.

  50. Uh huh, problem if I have to react quickly to something, the old me is in charge. I like to get to practice this in slo mo, still not easy then, but its cool when I catch myself acting automatically like that. I'm not so crazy when I can figure it out. When its not confusing that is. I think the key word for me is counter intuitive. Everything I have to do is practically the opposite of my narc training.

    The worst part is that I have no experience with it. I have to kind of go on faith that if I do things the right way it will work out, talk about friggin scary. That's the hard part.

  51. I used to write scripts and rehearse them until I knew them from memory. I hated thinking of some great comeback a few days after I needed it.
    The old man was always accusing me of trying to make him look stupid. Last time he said it I was finally ready for him with, "Why the hell would I drive all the way down here to make you look stupid when you're so damn good at doing it all by yourself?" He didn't come after me either verbally or physically. He just started bawling like a baby! I left.

  52. Thats funny, I can actually see him doing that. He wouldn't expect you doing that, and that took a lot of work I bet. When I am up against someone treating me badly, I know I should be more of realizing that its on them, not me. I don't need to try to please them. And I want to try to realize that its wrong for them to do it. Scripting before I'm up against someone starts with the basic self-esteem. And a whole lot of getting used to a new way of life from now on.

    Ugly or not I know that whatever I am, I am not a doormat. And I don't need to please anyone, that I do matter. The core of mothers malignant narcissism is pathalogical envy. So she tried to destroy anything that would make me feel good about myself. So, she doesn't matter. That needs to be kicked out of my head, the part where I think that she counts. Anything she had to say to me was because of her envy. If she could make me less, than that made her feel good. She needed me to play that role, and it would be dangerous to try to fight against it, but who knows she might have been bawling like a baby too, if I fought back.

    That was brave what you did with your father. I can try to imagine doing that to my mother. She would never say I try to make her look stupid, but she tries to make me look stupid, and she would laugh and laugh. But I don't need to talk to her anymore, she is gone for good, I believe. When you said that he didn't come after you verbally or physically, I think that means you might have expected him to, but your predicted results weren't what they were. I had a therapist once tell me that I predicted way too much. My mind would always try to predict a certain outcome, that was a terrible outcome. That I can't think that sometimes things might work out.

    So if I just keep doing what I need to, go up against my bad predictions and see the actual results. It is interesting because my therapist would put me through exposure experiences but would get me to write down what I predict first. The the exposure, and I don't remember one result would be the same as I predicted. She said eventually my brain would rewire into a more comfy pattern. She said it was scientifically proven.

    Not that I'm going to go out and do those exposure experiences now. I don't want to go to the store in a catsuit and bright pink lipstick, and ask someone to help me learn how to use scissors, but I can use real life for exposures, and kind of make a prediction first. I remember her telling me to do the predictions on purpose, don't let my mind wander into it, deliberately, on purpose make predictions. Put myself into control of it. Then see if the results are the same, and they never are.

  53. Funny, I had no idea what he might do because, in 69 years, I'd never stood up to him before. Part of the script was to say it and walk out. I would have never predicted him blubbering "please don't be mad at me." I guess I caught him totally off guard. Damn it felt good. I cranked up the radio in the car and sang all the way home.
    In our last phone conversation I got him too. When he called me a moron, my reply was, "If I'm a moron, the apple didn't fall far from the tree." CLICK! Didn't even script that one!
    Next morning mum died and he leaves a pathetic voicemail telling me he's all by himself holding her cold dead hand while he waits for the funeral home and will I come down. Ignored it then got a VM from the funeral home telling me to pick up my father for an appointment to discuss arrangements at such and such time. I knew arrangements were made and repaid years ago. I also knew there was to be cremation, no funeral, no visitation, no memorial of any kind. I ignored that too and the old man never even published an obituary neither did the golden child.
    I once wrote the folks a carefully crafted heartfelt letter. I predicted there would either be a shit storm or things would get better between us and I was OK with either result. I didn't foresee the third option: they ignored it and pretended I never sent it. Which, in the end, was fine by me because it led to almost three years of NC.

  54. Wow, thats amazing. To go into that state of mind, you are free and clear. I just saw this show on tv, where the MN was fighting with a normal person. The normal person was trying to up the ante too, fight back, but he was always up against having to hurt his family in the process, so he couldn't fight back. All the MN said to him in the end, was "Well, you lost then." When I watched that, I was thinking why he should care so much about what the MN thought of him, for an MN is like an "it", and we think they should matter so much.

    And no matter what a normal person does, the MN don't think like we do, and this is all a game for them, and they don't care how hurt, or even realize how hurt we are. And giving them one once of human value is not worth it. I would remember telling my mother about a breakup I had with my ex, and how hurt I felt, and she would get this look of excitement on her face, and other family members would just say that is her way. lol, Well, they weren't lying.

    My point is, that if someone is so mean like that, its important not care so damn much about what they think or feel about us. I don't know how narcs think, they hate everyone, we are just a nothing to them. And its going to be that way, like it or not, we can't change it, or should we even want to. When I saw that tv program, I could see who was the winner, it wasn't the MN. But the normal person felt like such a loser, it was only because he had a conscience.

    Since your father was the main cruel one in your FOO, I can't imagine what it would be like to have a man be like that. I imagine it must have been far scarier than a mother to be like that. But in the end, they are all the same, that cruel spiteful, hatred, its all the same. I remember my mother beating me once, for just playing a childhood trick on her. I remember her coming after me, and hitting me over and over again, my brother had to pull her off, she couldn't stop. And I remember now, and its like gee, that was a psychopath coming after me. No wonder I have nightmares, and watch scary movies, and tend to be in fear all the time. No wonder. And its no wonder when I see an email from a sexually charged SIL, I back off. My mind works where I will avoid them or please them, but not live where I can just "be" in spite of them. She doesn't like me? Oh well, then guess she will just have to get used to it. For I am not changing to please her.

    One of the things I can remember from my therapy was that if I don't like what someone says to me, I am just to say that "I don't understand, can you explain it?" That's what I should have said to her when she said I was "no bushwoman". What does that mean? For I feel her intention was to hurt me, but it can't hurt me if I don't get it, and I wouldn't have gotten it if I wasn't groomed by my masculine mother. Oh gee. How it all fits? How do they know, they must have some pact with the devil.

  55. In her own quiet manipulative way my mother was just as cruel as the old man. She wasn't above giving me, not the boys, a good slap across the face but her weapon of choice was a crack on the ear with her wooden hairbrush. If she made my ear bleed it was a bonus. Today I have a bilateral 90% hearing loss which the docs attribute to childhood injury...thanks mommy dearest!
    My husband always said my father had LMS: Little Man Syndrome. He's about 5'4". I'm taller than him and my older brother, who he loved to beat on, was well over 6 feet. The GC is 6'1" as was my husband. I used think the old man might have been bullied as a kid because he was so little but then decided there's really no excuse for his behaviour. For one thing, his identical twin was a sweetheart and for another thing the old man can be as charming as hell to outsiders which proves he knows what he does is unacceptable. Nope, the SOB is just plain mean! Karma has a hold of him by the balls right now...ask me if I care?

  56. Sorry to hear about your hearing. My mother used to use a big wooden spoon. I suppose they all have their issues and reasons why they are like that. To me it only stands to reason, they then should be more compassionate, not monsters. And most sexually abused boys, don't turn into abusive men themselves. I saw that on a program. They usually become too soft, and have a hard time disciplining their own children. They mostly become loving fathers. And besides, God holds us all accountable.

    And they do know what they are doing, The SIL obviously has no constraints to her behaviour, she continually leaves me out, knowing this must be hurtful, I told a friend about it and she finds it shocking that it happened. That it hasn't stopped, that even though I am accountable for the way I'm handling it, she doesn't feel no remorse at all. Well, no kidding.

    The fact that mother sits in her apartment and pretends to miss me. I bet I could call her tomorrow, and she'll be so excited, she has her main source of supply. She does want me around. But not for the love, ok love of supply. But it does look like she really does care about me. A while back I got a huge growth on my cheek I was terrified to go to the doctor. So terrified, but it was growing so big and fast I just had to. It was a squamous cell cancer, that was taken right off, but the doctor didn't give me much relief, just said it was gone, and I felt like I had cancer all over. During an eye checkup, the eye doctor when you have to report your recent health and I mentioned it, the eye doctor could see I was scared, and told me that squamous cell cancer is nothing, he sees it all the time.

    Before, 2005 I was normal. Then when mother came back, I was scared of everything. Couldn't even open my mailbox, the therapist had to come to my apartment building and help me. Was so scared of everything. All from mother simply being so caring and loving and hovering. In covert meanness she was trying to kill me. Couldn't even run the washing machine, I thought I would be electrocuted. Everything. I lost my job, couldn't pay my bills, was practically on the street. Scared of money, couldn't even look at my bank statement. But Auntie would drop off mommy at my door for her "visits". Those visits were poison.

    Never, ever do I want to go back there. Feeling good now, and if I spy a malignant narcissist in my sight I stay far away. Except the ones I volunteer with, they don't bother me too much, I hear their voices I feel scared, but they don't ever hurt me. I don't know why. I see them screw other people though, its weird.

    They have no excuses. There was no reason for me to be in the gutter. My mother knew how to be charming and sweet, she did it all the time, when she needed to. She didn't want to get caught. Since they know what they do is wrong, they can be held accountable for their behaviour.