Saturday, October 20, 2012

I feel like I owe it to someone.




You gain strength, courage, and confidence by every experience in which you really stop and look fear in the face. You are able to say to yourself," I lived through this horror. I can take the next thing that comes along.
Eleanor Roosevelt.


All my life, as a child living with my mother and after, I always felt like I was on a road that I didn't want to be on. Every one told me not to worry. That not liking your direction in life was normal. Implying that this abnormality was some how a driving force in finding the right direction and finding a better station in life.
These were the people who didn't know the truth about the Barbarian. People that didn't understand that there were really people like my mother. And people who wouldn't want to understand if I could get it through their thick head what a twisted sick fuck it was that had instilled all these insecurities.

Fear is not a bad thing. Fear is an indicator that we are leaving our comfort zone.
But I don't want to give in an inch to fear.
I don't want to be that guy anymore.

All my life with the Barbarian, fear would be one thing I rarely felt. Having an open door to her house was playing it safe. Every thing I did was safe.
As long as my actions were not ones she opposed, there was no need to fear.
This was entirely impossible, because she would have opposed every thing I did. Every thing I stood for.
Each time I was in her presence, I was forced to split myself in two. And like the false self a Narcissist presents to outsiders, I was forced to present a false self to her.
I could talk about drinking, and chasing skirts, because that fit into the world she approved of.
Or a friend banging another friend's wife.
And betrayal's and lies.
It's what she feeds on.
But I could never speak of my love for a woman and her children.
I could never speak about any act of kindness bestowed on someone else.
That would make me a mark.
And no matter what projection fest she subjected me to on any given day, it was to be weathered and never in a million years was I to ever criticize her.
Never.
To say the smallest, unmeasured word, was to open myself up to the worst narcissistic rage.
                    

                                                                           






                   




    

                   



                   



    

                   



31 comments:

mulderfan said...

Yeah, been there! Although I think your narc was even more destructive than my NF, I remember being in a permanent state of scared shitless and trying to make everything I did and said fit in with his expectations. One slip and the rage was epic.

He once visited our house and turned on the kitchen radio which my husband had tuned to a station other than NF's favourite. Prior to the visit I had spent days bitching out my husband and trying to make sure he and every other detail of our home would measure up but I never thought to check the damn radio!

The evil shit tore me a new asshole because he had to turn a knob on the radio. What sickens me, is I let him and apologized for my husband choosing the wrong station on HIS radio in HIS home!

This great incident took place before my DD was born and she just turned 30. When people make the "age" excuse for the old bastard I need to remind myself he was only 63 when he went ape shit over a fucking radio station.

Being under that kinda stress and having to sell your soul just to get by in the presence of folks like your mommy dearest and my sweet old dad can pretty much guarantee you're going to feel like royal shit until you finally crawl out from under the crap that they've buried you under.

Fuck 'em!

upsi said...

Do you think that the day (10/10) you finally said fuck it that you were like, officially done with the "yes ma'am" fear dance? Or was it not wanting to play the part anymore? Or both? I'm fascinated by the final straw. Because we make a choice that day when we say NO FUCKING MORE. It happens on a specific day and there is no going back.

This was another fuck-yeah kinda-made-me-cry-a-little post, Q. Especially the part about how the things you really think are worthwhile about you - the parts of you that are redeeming and montage-worthy in your Kevin Spacey American Beauty private Q-mination of who you are and what your life means - that you can't even be those things around her. That the truth is unsafe in her vicinity. That she would kill those things.

That punched me in my tit. In a good way.

Fuck the narc rage, who needs their little tantrums when you can drill a hole in your head instead. Or have your bikini waxed.

mulderfan said...

Yeah, I'm with Upsi. You voiced something that made me remember just how he made me feel about MYSELF and I realized that's the real damage they do. They make us sell our souls and give away or hide who we really are just so we can feel safe in our own homes. I still feel like shit for letting him do it.

The final straw for me was not one of his epic rages it was when he dismissed everything I had ever accomplished in my life by telling me I'd wasted my life sitting on my arse. At that particular moment, for whatever twisted reason, HE suddenly decided that I hadn't accomplished anything HE deemed worthy. The bastard did me a huge favour by handing me the keys to my freedom.

IMO The narc is often the one that unwittingly sets us free because in the end they leave us with no alternative if we are to retain a shred of dignity and self.

So yeah, Q, you got this old broad right in the gut. Next time aim for the boob it'd be way more fun!

q1605 said...

I am not getting any younger. And in my old age I am divesting myself of the old yard stick I tried to measure up to.
I realize in a few short years I will be plowed under and no one will ever give me a second thought.
There are your Aristotle's and your Ben Franklin's. But for each one of them, how many millions fell into the great unknown. And there is nothing wrong with that.
After a point why keep beating yourself and others up about failed expectations.
Our reach will always exceed our grasp. And by that definition we will always fall short.
Short of our own mark and certainly of some crabby bastard standing over us.
So I do the best I can, with what I have to do it with.
I have no illusions of being transformed into a super hero rock star and I am OK with that.
It's not for others to deal with, even if this person sired me.
Upsi likes this statement so I will use it here.
So a big fuck you to any one that isn't happy with my lot in life. You ain't the one living it. I am.

jessie said...

"And like the false self a Narcissist presents to outsiders, I was forced to present a false self to her."

When I realized that I always had to be that "fake self" with my mother, it was one of the first moments I realized something was really, really wrong.

upsi said...

Hahahaha a big fuck you to the crabby bastard standing over you. it's going in the quote book.

q1605 said...

Upsi. On your earlier question. It was the straw that broke the camel's back that wasn't. She was so in my face the day I left that I felt there was no alternative.
Ten minutes before I stormed out of her house I would have told you that the way it all ended was impossible.
I left and went to Miss R's house and cooled down for a few days.
I think I had a feeling it would end up in no contact because I was taking a no holds barred approach to it all.
This was before I knew what personality disorders are. All I knew was that every time I had contact with her she came out like a rabid bat.
Really after only the one conversation we had when she told me I had dreamed up her criminal activities whilst in a drug induced haze, was when I realized what a lost cause she is. So I bombarded her and her neighbors with the deadly newspaper clipping rays and have never spoken to her again.

upsi said...

It was also very touching that you sent coupons. lol!

no holds barred is the only way to go.

mulderfan said...

Exactly Q! If we're lucky, our narcs will nail their own coffins shut. It's like a switch gets flipped and we're DONE!

I do occasionally think, "Why the fuck didn't I do this forty years ago?" but mostly I just enjoy being free to be me wherever that takes me.

Enjoy your freedom, Q!

vicariousrising said...

Fear is something I will do a lot to alleviate. Which isn't to set I avoid it because I will jump at things that scare me in order to shoo away the demons. Leaving them alone just gives the monsters the opportunity to do push ups in the hallway while I try to barricade the door from them (totally borrowing from addiction parlance).

Although I must admit, I'm in retreat mode right now, licking my wounds and other such nonsense.

I think some of my issue is that I'm still scrambling to understand what matters to me, who I am, what I want. I opened myself to possibility and found myself inept at navigating. I know I'll end up on my feet in the end, but I want more out of life than just surviving it.

And just saying that makes me feel voracious and uncomfortable.

It's painful, but I'm not done shedding my scapegoat skin (lol, what a terrible mixed metaphor. I assume goats shed fur, but... Ah whatever.)

vicariousrising said...

Yes, Mulderfan! You nailed it when you wrote how the narc unwittingly leaves us with no alternative but to cut them loose. That's what happened with me. They burned every shred of hope I'd been hanging on to.

Tundra Woman said...

Exactly-there's no place else TO "go" and after you've exhausted every last option, what's left? I think that realization was equally as "motivating" NC as another light bulb moment: "TW, this is the REST OF YOUR LIFE. No more, no less, NO DIFFERENT."
That's what finally bought me to my knees. I could NOT keep doing this, I just COULD NOT. Not "would not"-that implies a choice I didn't feel I had. Into the indefinite future, here it was. It was NOT gonna change. I always felt waaayy older than my chronological age, and I felt about 70 when I was in my 20's.
IMO, this is what happens when you don't have a childhood, an adolescence, early adulthood. You're just plain old and tired. Bone weary.
TW

upsi said...

"And going to find a space inside to laugh, separate the wheat from the chaff. 'Cause I feel like I owe it to someone."

perfect song btw. so soulful!

Tundra Woman said...

One other thing I wanted to mention as well: As soon as I put that 4 line snail mail letter in the mailbox, I immediately felt lighter some how. My decision had been made, it's with regret but here it is: You said/screamed/raged/through clenched teeth repeatedly, "You're either WITH me or AGAINST me!" How much clearer could you have made it regarding how you see the world, but more importantly, how you see ME. And always have, always will.
If the twit had simply left me alone, I KNOW I would have revisited that decision-no question. But instead when she REALLY went off the deep-end, WOW, it simply confirmed and exceeded my wildest expectations.
It was kind of like, "How Can I Miss Ya When You're Never GONE?" to some beyond comprehensible nth degree.
The longer term positives did take longer to see, but they've been so well worth it. And it's all part of the adventure, but I prefer to spend the rest of mine with as little of DRAMA as possible-please?! ;)
TW

q1605 said...

Yeah TW and VR. That phrase don't poke the bear is a two way street.

vicariousrising said...

I think acknowledging all the anger left by having to stuff our sense of self is a decent start. I know when I told myself to not be angry, I really was a ticking bomb.

q1605 said...

We are supposed to have evolved away from anger. Ok I'll bite. What is supposed to replace it?
If you don't ever get pissed you'll never cut this cancer out of your life.

Tundra Woman said...

Oh yeah. "...really a ticking bomb." sigh. Mine detonated. Remember I'm the same one who destroyed my LR as in smashed it AND it's contents into beyond recognition. The full monty. Within a few days prior to my 24th Birthday and then I walked away from my first "Adult Home."
GONE.
What I learned from this defining young adult event:
-OMG! That come out of NOWHERE! (heh heh, wanna bet?!)
-anger is a BAD, DESTRUCTIVE FORCE! (well, yeah when you use it like that, but there's lots of other ways too, ya twit! IRL Wars break out when diplomacy stops workin' and Psychob isn't exactly a great "measuring stick" for "Diplomacy" or "Work it Out!" yes, by all means insert very heavy sarcasm right...here!..Thanks!)
-I better not get pissed off AGAIN, or I'm gonna find myself standing on a tower somewhere, lock and loaded on Rock 'n Roll! I COULD just BE a BUDDING DANGER to humanity! (well, yeah but at the rate you're goin' you're already the the first casualty/ stage-repairable, but never quite the *exact* same)
ENTER "THE ICE AGE"
That event left me unable to truly laugh, cry, tell my truth-never mind acknowledge it and my role/responsibility in that whole mess. And numbed out for a few years, catching my breathe-or trying to.
Then I was ready for the next "Round" and each time, I'd walk away exhausted but never truly surprised after the first few years at any crap she pulled.The IEDs said it all. But I still remember that period as one of profound sadness. Not grief-that feels different and certainly not suicidal.
Just working some more on powerlessness and acceptance.
TW
But boy, I just knew, even at the time if I could have summoned up those tears, I would have felt so much better, yet all my conjuring up the tears etc. made them that much more elusive!

Anonymous said...

"she told me I had dreamed up her criminal activities whilst in a drug induced haze....."

She's probably happy she has no more pesky witnesses around to interfere with her delusion of being perfect.

Sis

Trisha said...

Powerful post Q. It has inspired me to delve a little into my self, which I surely appreciate. :) Though I want to think on this more, it seems that I was the opposite of you in the fear department. Especially after age 11 or 12. Once I was knew my n mother was a mean, unfair, non-parent, I challenged her constantly. As well, she despised my father for being fear filled, so I learned not to show that. So, for me to say I am afraid of something is very new, and out of my comfort zone. I always expect people to treat me poorly when I am fearful. Your mother sure sounds like an effed up piece of work. So sorry you were exposed to that.

q1605 said...

Hi Trisha. It's not really correct to say I don't fear anything. Men are not allowed to be vocal about fear so we dumb it down.
It's like I am afraid of everything and nothing. All At the same time. I wish I had figured more of what I am figuring out years ago.

mulderfan said...

Q, We could all beat ourselves up for "if only" but unlike narcs we can't go back and rewrite history. The important thing is we had the balls (no I'm no trying to start anything) to get out while we still had a bit of living left to do.

So keep enjoying life on your own terms. You rock!

q1605 said...

Thanks Mulderfan. I think I am still defining what my terms are. Thing is, later, I thought I was living life on my own terms. But it was me trying to be what my mother isn't. Which is a good start but being the antithesis of what our narc is may not be us being true to ourselves.
None of got to choose who we are. We are all a hash of being what wouldn't set them off on a Narc rage and then trying to be their polar opposite while throwing in dashes of what we could have been if we were not always walking some tight rope all the time.

Anonymous said...

"We are all a hash of being what wouldn't set them off on a Narc rage and then trying to be their polar opposite."

It's funny how we can live life not realizing we are being a reaction to someone else and what they did or do. It's like waking up from a dream when you start being you.

Sis

Vanci said...

Q,
What a beautiful, thoughtful, insightful, heart-breaking and heartwarming post. Thank you for sharing such an eloquent description of the bare bones feeling of that bred-in, pounded-in, beaten-in, screamed-in fear that is an absolute requirement of the narc/SG relationship. I know that feeling, I remember that feeling, I hate that feeling.

I still have that feeling, too, and the solution for me has been to turn it *into* anger. You said in your comment above:

"We are supposed to have evolved away from anger. Ok I'll bite. What is supposed to replace it?
If you don't ever get pissed you'll never cut this cancer out of your life."

I am abso-fucking-lutely angry. I was shovelled spoonfuls of shit my entire life by people who abused the societal assumption that parents love and care for their children. I was forced into submissive and denigrating humiliations in every facet possible of a person's life and then forced to believe that I was somehow responsible for said abuses.

The ONLY reason that this abuse stopped is because I left. Packed up my bags and walked out without my dignity or my pride or my money or my stuff or my 'relationships.' I was forced to ORPHAN myself in order to get away from the abuse.

Am I angry? Fuck yeah, I'm angry!
I'll be angry for the rest of my life. Anyone who tells me not to be is either naive or willfully blind, IMO. Am I angry like my ENF or NM or NSis or GCYB? No, I'm not.

They choose to use their anger to hurt people. I choose to use my anger to keep people from being hurt. My anger makes me a formidable foe to child abusers, spouse beaters, liars, cheats and manipulative people. My anger is fueled by my desire to never again allow myself or anyone else around me to be abused.

If we need to get rid of anger in order to 'get over it, move on or (let's face it,) make the non-evolved people around us feel more comfortable in their belief that the world doesn't really contain Barbarians, then, hey, okay. I'm an accomodating person. I choose to replace my anger with righteous fury instead.

Love,
Vanci

q1605 said...

Hello there Vanci.
And another thing. Our anger comes from years of the most despicable and unjust treatment suffered at the hands of these sick twist offs.
Where does theirs come from?
If they stubbed their toe every time they took a step maybe I could see. But they are walking around cursing the sky because it isn't the right shade of blue.
It has to be exhausting to be like that.
Why they are unable to live and let live is something we'll never know.

Vanci said...

Q,
Well...
I can only assume that their anger must come from having to live every single stinking moment of their lives within the confines of their own horrible thoughts.

I'm not so much interested in understanding why they are the way they are, I guess. What's that old Motley Crue song, "Don't go away mad, just go away?"

Love,
Vanci

q1605 said...

I guess my question should be, why is their anger over nothing justified, but ours over years of being browbeaten toss off fluff.

mulderfan said...

I can't imagine running around all day going ape shit about every perceived slight. Miserable buggers!

As far as justification: You don't have to justify anything when you're perfect!

Vanci said...

Q,
The answer to a narc?
Simple. Cuz we're not them. It's their world, dontcha see? And we should be damn grateful they're letting us live in it.

Love, Vanci

Tundra Woman said...

^Bada Bing.
Except for all the "efforts" they made to shape us into their image and likeness A La, "Do/Be THIS or DIE!"
Nothin' like holdin' the weapon to their head and telling 'em they were "willing volunteers."
Catch it?!
TW