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I Can Relate     Print Topic    
User Topic: N P D Thread part 9
veritas
♀ Member
Member # 3525
Default  Posted: 4:29 PM, February 16th (Thursday), 2012View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

juki, the fact that you feel relieved now that he's leaving is a pretty good indicator that you're dealing with an NPD. Once he leaves for good, then your own fog will REALLY begin to lift as you wonder how you put up with so much for so long. Wishing for it not to be true isn't a bad thing; you're human, and you loved him for a long time. The dangerous part is when you start looking for cures. That's when a lot of people leave SI or this forum because they want to learn to deal, or they want to cure their spouses. However, with an NPD, they reach certain stages in their relationships with people, and there is no turning back.

Stage 1 is the honeymoon, then they reach the testing point. They do something horrible, and you blame yourself and forgive them. This becomes Stage 2.

In Stage 2, they're still really good most of the time, but the subtle undermining comes in. You shouldn't cook creamed corn with mashed potatoes. The painting you bought is almost good enough to hang in the living room. The outfit you're wearing would be phenomenal on a real model. You're not quite walking on eggshells, but quietly and without even noticing it, you have started to adapt your behavior to the backhanded criticism. You've learned how to behave in front of their friends, in front of your friends and family -- it's actually a very peaceful time once you get over the "minor" irritations. Because they do try to make up for it, but they had a difficult relationship with their parents growing up even though now they either kiss his or her ass or want nothing to do with them. They just don't know any better; that's your job.

Then comes the crazy-making stage, Stage 3. It comes when something really major happens, and you're no longer willing to just be quiet and put your faith in the relationship. You start questioning things, and your NPD by now has gotten used to being in control. They're not going to stand for it. So they go way underground and start laying some really heavy groundwork with their friends, your friends, and families. They thrive on allies to tell you that you're overreacting, that your spouse has always been an original kind of person, and maybe you should just lay off about it. A lot of people get stuck in the crazymaking stage for years. Little fights, little annoyances to the NPD, but nothing they can't handle because they know they still have the upper hand. You kind of know something is wrong, but don't want to confront without absolute proof that there's something hinky.

After Stage 4, major confrontation, that's when you experience full-on narcissistic rage. It's war, pure and simple. You're battling your sanity versus the narcissist's desire to preserve the image of him or herself that s/he has so carefully built up all of these years, and they're not going down without a serious fight. Screaming at 3 am, violence, slashing your tires, then acting like these are all perfectly normal things are de rigeur during this stage. They were never like this before, so it's the confrontation's fault. This is a really dangerous period for the NPDspouse, because unless they leave or kick the NPD out, they can expect the rages and violence to continue any time they deviate from being a Stepford Spouse. There is rarely any coming back from this point.

And once the scales fall from your eyes, so to speak, those of us who experienced infidelity realize, like Frank said, that infidelity was the least of our worries. We find out that much of what they said and pretended to be was a total lie; it was a game they were playing for years and years. That's the part many people can't walk away from, that it was all an elaborate charade. The idea that this person will never be cured is even more difficult for some people to swallow. You've taken the red pill, and the agent you're living with knows it, too. Unless you're willing to reassimilate and live an even more closed-in experience than before, you can only expect rage, hostility and violence.

Of course, once you try to leave, the NPD will try to destroy and undermine you at every turn -- when they're not crying, begging, pleading, and minimizing their behaviors. They will turn off the electricity, and say, "But what else can I do? I wouldn't ring up any new bills for you! Surely you can see my side of this; I never asked for any of this to happen." In the meantime, they're cackling to their friends about playing hardball. The games don't end when you divorce them unless they find another source of supply, in which case they will mercifully drop you like a hot potato and never speak to you again. For some people this is excruciating, but it's actually the best thing they could do for you, even though they may not realize it.

*Edited for gender generalizations

[This message edited by veritas at 11:16 PM, February 16th (Thursday)]


Actions unmask what words disguise.
Love many; trust few; and always paddle your own canoe.
When you win, you teach; when you lose, you learn.

Posts: 10164 | Registered: Feb 2004
SoHurt
♀ Member
Member # 1210
Default  Posted: 5:23 PM, February 16th (Thursday), 2012View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

Juki, yes, soverybetrayed is a screenname.

I hadn't given much thought to my predilection, either... until about two weeks ago, when I started looking at the other relationships in my life. My FOO (still laughing about Frank's Foo Bird!) is full of PD's, and so is WH's. Talk about a freaking nightmare. The more I learn, the less I like my family, and I didn't care for them, already. But now...

There is no way I'll be healthy before I'm dead. I can see so much of how this happened, but I can't believe or trust that I wouldn't let it happen again. Every single sweet, loving man I dated went out the door, and all the crazies got invited back. I know I'm sick in ways that will probably take years to figure out. It's not something that just learning to spot them will fix. What's wrong with ME is what I need to work out, and that won't be easy.

I mean, having such serious issues that I allowed myself to be cheated on repeatedly, abused, and THEN FORGOT a lot of what was done... wow. I posted somewhere a couple pages back about what my friend reminded me of that I'd blocked out. Blocking things out was my childhood survival mechanism. Well, it doesn't work well or do you much good as an adult. I've been in this abusive relationship almost 25 years... that's not a good sign.

Yeah, it's scary. I won't be dating after this is over.... I'll be reading books and going to therapy. The only dates I'll have are therapy dates.


"My feet are finally beginning to heal after 25 years of walking on eggshells."
"I walk barefoot all the time, now!"
~Me, SoHurt, in HIS NPD TAIL HURTS CUZ I KICKED IT~

DIVORCED!! =D


Posts: 463 | Registered: Mar 2003 | From: I am "Somewhere else." Next destination?
Free2012
♀ Member
Member # 34070
Default  Posted: 5:35 PM, February 16th (Thursday), 2012View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

  Posted: 4:29 PM, February 16th (Thursday), 2012
juki, the fact that you feel relieved now that he's leaving is a pretty good indicator that you're dealing with an NPD. Once he leaves for good, then your own fog will REALLY begin to lift as you wonder how you put up with so much for so long. Wishing for it not to be true isn't a bad thing; you're human, and you loved him for a long time. The dangerous part is when you start looking for cures. That's when a lot of people leave because they want to learn to deal, or they want to cure their spouses. However, with an NPD, they reach certain stages in their relationships with people, and there is no turning back.
Stage 1 is the honeymoon, then they reach the testing point. They do something horrible, and you blame yourself and forgive them. This becomes Stage 2.

In Stage 2, they're still really good most of the time, but the subtle undermining comes in. You shouldn't cook creamed corn with mashed potatoes. The painting you bought is almost good enough to hang in the living room. The outfit you're wearing would be phenomenal on a real model. You're not quite walking on eggshells, but quietly and without even noticing it, you have started to adapt your behavior to the backhanded criticism. You've learned how to behave in front of his friends, in front of your friends and family -- it's actually a very peaceful time once you get over the "minor" irritations. Because he does try to make up for it, but he had a difficult relationship with his parents growing up even though now they either kiss his ass or want nothing to do with him. He just doesn't know any better; that's your job.

Then comes the crazy-making stage, Stage 3. It comes when something really major happens, and you're no longer willing to just be quiet and put your faith in the relationship. You start questioning things, and your NPD by now has gotten used to being in control. They're not going to stand for it. So they go way underground and start laying some really heavy groundwork with their friends, your friends, and families. They thrive on allies to tell you that you're overreacting, that your spouse has always been an original kind of person, and maybe you should just lay off about it. A lot of people get stuck in the crazymaking stage for years. Little fights, little annoyances to the NPD, but nothing they can't handle because they know they still have the upper hand. You kind of know something is wrong, but don't want to confront without absolute proof that there's something hinky.

After Stage 4, major confrontation, that's when you experience full-on narcissistic rage. It's war, pure and simple. You're battling your sanity versus the narcissist's desire to preserve the image of him or herself that s/he has so carefully built up all of these years, and they're not going down without a serious fight. Screaming at 3 am, violence, slashing your tires, then acting like these are all perfectly normal things are de rigeur during this stage. They were never like this before, so it's the confrontation's fault. This is a really dangerous period for the NPDspouse, because unless they leave or kick the NPD out, they can expect the rages and violence to continue any time they deviate from being a Stepford Spouse. There is rarely any coming back from this point.

And once the scales fall from your eyes, so to speak, those of us who experienced infidelity realize, like Frank said, that infidelity was the least of our worries. We find out that much of what they said and pretended to be was a total lie; it was a game they were playing for years and years. That's the part many people can't walk away from, that it was all an elaborate charade. The idea that this person will never be cured is even more difficult for some people to swallow. You've taken the red pill, and the agent you're living with knows it, too. Unless you're willing to reassimilate and live an even more closed-in experience than before, you can only expect rage, hostility and violence.

Of course, once you try to leave, the NPD will try to destroy and undermine you at every turn -- when they're not crying, begging, pleading, and minimizing their behaviors. They will turn off the electricity, and say, "But what else can I do? I wouldn't ring up any new bills for you! Surely you can see my side of this; I never asked for any of this to happen." In the meantime, they're cackling to their friends about playing hardball. The games don't end when you divorce them unless they find another source of supply, in which case they will mercifully drop you like a hot potato and never speak to you again. For some people this is excruciating, but it's actually the best thing they could do for you, even though they may not realize it

Veritas you just nailed it! Wonderful !


There is no way out but through

Divorced

BS: me 41 yrs
WH: him 67 yrs , married OW (39yrs) 5/13
2 kids aged 7 and 9
married for 12 years
D-Day 16.10.10
Divorced, final 03/12


Posts: 53 | Registered: Nov 2011
jjct
♂ Member
Member # 17484
Default  Posted: 7:31 PM, February 16th (Thursday), 2012View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

veritas, thank you.
N's particularly target caregivers who happen to appear in their orbits.

No richer source of supply could be found from those whose daily profession and work is based upon

The idea that this person will never be cured

It is anathema.

Sure, it feeds into "what I do (read: the power of my love and efforts; "I am so good") cures or helps anything"

And coming to the realization that we don't fix a thing in these ones is indeed

a most difficult pill to swallow.

I was told to run when I first came here, and there was nowhere in me to fit that certain calculus...nowhere... in my everything can be healed mind.

Thank you veritas, for saying such a simple thing. If being away from such gives you peace, what does that tell you?

I think, whatever your sitch, in here, in pet-land...get away...see how you feel...
better?

That would be enough for a differential diagnosis for me.
(((TRIBE)))

PS
The plethora of caulk guns is a dead giveaway too - much simpler!


Posts: 6030 | Registered: Dec 2007 | From: texas
juki
♀ Member
Member # 34784
Default  Posted: 8:29 PM, February 16th (Thursday), 2012View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

Veritas, thank you for that post. I could relate to a lot of it. I could relate mostly to stage 2, some of stage 3, and the screaming of stage 4.

I'm now thinking mostly about MY part in this. What made me a perfect "fit" for this dance.

It really is amazing how our FOO sets us up for our future if we are not aware.

Yeah, it would be nice if my H would/could learn how to dance a different way, like I'm learning to do.

It's funny, I know that my detachment is a coping tool that I am using in order to not backslide, and that it's all going to hit me at some point, and I'll grieve then, but it feels real right now.

I find myself looking at him in a different light, with a different lens, and I wonder if this is how he looked at me all these years. Strange.

I don't hate him. I know that I love him, but I love myself too.

Oh, my niece asked me tonight what I got out of the abuse, why did I stay for so long. She's right. I must have gotten something out of it. The first thing that came to mind was that I didn't feel loved when it happened. So does that mean that all this time I didn't think I was worthy of love? I think I'm going to bring that up with the IC next week.

So much to think about, process, and absorb...

Night all. Sweet dreams :)


Me: 45
H(Sazerac): 46
M: 25,T: 27
S24

Posts: 550 | Registered: Feb 2012
caregiver9000
♀ Member
Member # 28622
Default  Posted: 10:14 PM, February 16th (Thursday), 2012View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

veritas,

The four stages are spot on! It gave me cold chills and nausea to read it spelled out like that. I relived feeling exactly that way. Stage 2 was the hardest for me. It was a bewildering and lost feeling. A gradual loss of confidence and self doubt.

I am so glad to be finding my equilibrium and to have the support in place to walk not alone.

There is not ONE caulk gun in my house now. NOT a single one. Who the hell needs caulk anyway?

You know what else I haven't had to do? Watch stupid shows about how to run a perfect bead of caulk.

juki, welcome. I remember the relief stage. The freedom to breathe. And the overwhelming sense that finally I had found people who knew, who would understand and that I could talk to. I posted like crazy and shared my darkest fears and worries. Am I crazy? Why do I feel crazy? Why am I being attacked? This is one of the most sacred places to me. These people saved my sanity. I found myself and my humor again here.

I found the googling emotions chuckle worthy. But did he google how do I feel? or how do I show?


Me: 43, independent, happy, despite co-parenting with a lower muppet
FT "Stretch" (and Skew!) ;)
DS 12 DS 9
S 5/2010
D 12/2012

Posts: 5308 | Registered: May 2010 | From: a better place
wontdefineme
♀ Member
Member # 31421
Default  Posted: 11:12 PM, February 16th (Thursday), 2012View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

It's comforting knowing I haven't been the only one living this nightmare, but disturbing just how many were out there too. Thank god I didn't get one of those spouses that would rather murder over just plain old cheating and mental/emotional abuse.

Posts: 2079 | Registered: Mar 2011
juki
♀ Member
Member # 34784
Default  Posted: 9:03 AM, February 17th (Friday), 2012View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

I need to get back to detachment.

We had a huge fight last night and I asked him to leave for good.

He packed this morning and went to work. Didn't seem to bother him at all.

I cannot think, concentrate on anything, and the tears just keep on coming.

I keep wanting to call him, and I keep checking my email, but I know it's pointless. I don't know what's wrong with me.

I know I have to do this, get through this, he's not going to change, but it is so painful!

Where did the relief and detachment go? And how do I get it back?


Me: 45
H(Sazerac): 46
M: 25,T: 27
S24

Posts: 550 | Registered: Feb 2012
Edie
♀ Member
Member # 26133
Default  Posted: 9:16 AM, February 17th (Friday), 2012View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

ay for so long. She's right. I must have gotten something out of it. The first thing that came to mind was that I didn't feel loved when it happened. So does that mean that all this time I didn't think I was worthy of love? I think I'm going to bring that up with the IC next week.

Juki,

Everything that Veritas wrote is so spot-on. I have been in a NPD very close working relationship (not unlike a marriage) for 25 years, and am only now just onto the NPD diagnosis and am getting out.

My 'qualiications' as an NPD partner (as per your question above), much less about feeling unworthy, and much more about being well-trained (by default) through childhood to being better attuned to others' needs than my own. Again the care-giving 'legacy' as identified by others, being determined to make 'things better' for everybody.


Maybe a long walk in the Hindu Kush would do it?
BW (me) 52
FWS 55
Together 29 years; 2 DDs 15 & 12
Dday Dec 08 (confessed) Feb 09 16 other OW confessed. OW17 tried her unedifying hardest until Aug 09. R'd.

Posts: 4960 | Registered: Nov 2009 | From: UK
juki
♀ Member
Member # 34784
Default  Posted: 9:32 AM, February 17th (Friday), 2012View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

Yes Edie, I think you hit on a good FOO point.

I don't know if I was conditioned to do everything for others (my H actually has more of that trait).

But I had several traumatic events happen as a child 10/11 within a year of each other. They were sudden deaths of my father and my sister. My mother then neglected me until I moved out at 18 with my H.

I'm thinking now that I lacked the ability to discern good qualities in a person at the time. I jumped at the first pretty face that promised me the moon, paid attention to me, and promised escape and adventure (diversion).

I'm starting to realize that I have this wonderful image of him, which explains why I love him so much when he's away all the time (military).

Sorry, I find myself writing a short little note to you guys and then it all comes tumbling out!

I feel for my therapist having to make sense of me in a couple of days!!


Me: 45
H(Sazerac): 46
M: 25,T: 27
S24

Posts: 550 | Registered: Feb 2012
juki
♀ Member
Member # 34784
Default  Posted: 9:36 AM, February 17th (Friday), 2012View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

Edie, are you still working with this NPD person? I hope they're not your boss!

I quit a good but hated job a couple of years ago. It was so hard to do, but I have never regretted it.

I started my own biz a couple of years ago, and even though that has it's own challenges, I wouldn't trade for anything.


Me: 45
H(Sazerac): 46
M: 25,T: 27
S24

Posts: 550 | Registered: Feb 2012
Edie
♀ Member
Member # 26133
Default  Posted: 9:59 AM, February 17th (Friday), 2012View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

Yes, still working (but working behind the scenes as I write to extricate myself formally and safely, it's proving to be quite a process but I have built a great support network). Not quite my boss formally as we are co-directors, but in practice, his gender, older age and quite literally the NPD put me subordinate.


Maybe a long walk in the Hindu Kush would do it?
BW (me) 52
FWS 55
Together 29 years; 2 DDs 15 & 12
Dday Dec 08 (confessed) Feb 09 16 other OW confessed. OW17 tried her unedifying hardest until Aug 09. R'd.

Posts: 4960 | Registered: Nov 2009 | From: UK
veritas
♀ Member
Member # 3525
Default  Posted: 10:02 AM, February 17th (Friday), 2012View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

I lived it, so trust me, I am not going back there! People who remotely remind me of the NPD ex do not last long with me. And I am finally navigating the waters of the FOO. He lied to them, and they believed it just like I did for far too long and they did and said some really hurtful things in the process. He also did a lot of things to alienate me from them. So when I deal with them (and some of them really are PD or damn near), I have to keep the boundary of where my baggage with him interferes with my baggage with them. I find dealing with him mentally exhausting in even small doses; we're having an e-mail exchange about our daughter's school functions and talking to him is like pulling teeth.

(((juki)))

[This message edited by veritas at 10:56 AM, February 17th (Friday)]


Actions unmask what words disguise.
Love many; trust few; and always paddle your own canoe.
When you win, you teach; when you lose, you learn.

Posts: 10164 | Registered: Feb 2004
Edie
♀ Member
Member # 26133
Default  Posted: 10:32 AM, February 17th (Friday), 2012View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

Juki,

I am so so sorry about you losing your dad and your sister. It sounds like you lost your mum as well.

And much of your childhood.


Maybe a long walk in the Hindu Kush would do it?
BW (me) 52
FWS 55
Together 29 years; 2 DDs 15 & 12
Dday Dec 08 (confessed) Feb 09 16 other OW confessed. OW17 tried her unedifying hardest until Aug 09. R'd.

Posts: 4960 | Registered: Nov 2009 | From: UK
juki
♀ Member
Member # 34784
Default  Posted: 11:04 AM, February 17th (Friday), 2012View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

Thanks for that Edie,

I find myself thinking about all this ancient history now, because I think it explains how it was possible for me to suppress, stuff, and deny reality for so long. Explains why I wanted to believe he loved me for so long. I'm glad I finally woke up and pushed for the truth. It's painful to realize he never did, but I WILL get through this!!! And finally live a peaceful life

I think I have recovered from this morning's tear-fest.

Edie, I truly hope you get out of your horrible work situation and into a rewarding non-abusive work environment. A bad work sitch can suck the life out of you, just like a painful M.


Me: 45
H(Sazerac): 46
M: 25,T: 27
S24

Posts: 550 | Registered: Feb 2012
juki
♀ Member
Member # 34784
Default  Posted: 11:13 AM, February 17th (Friday), 2012View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

Anyone else noticed strange coincidences regarding dates? I have noticed so many, and now just realized that today is 27 years to the day since we met.


Me: 45
H(Sazerac): 46
M: 25,T: 27
S24

Posts: 550 | Registered: Feb 2012
juki
♀ Member
Member # 34784
Default  Posted: 11:40 AM, February 17th (Friday), 2012View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

Thanks for the hugs Veritas.


Me: 45
H(Sazerac): 46
M: 25,T: 27
S24

Posts: 550 | Registered: Feb 2012
Edie
♀ Member
Member # 26133
Default  Posted: 11:47 AM, February 17th (Friday), 2012View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

Thanks Juki,

Even though the accumulated stress has made me very ill at the moment, I do also nevertheless feel like you:

I woke up with a true feeling that today is the first day of the rest of my life. Everything looks different, brighter

(that was me in December when I made both the diagnosis and the decision to leave.

We're both, you and I, at the 'best' years of our lives - a good age for living now.

One thing Threnody, another member here, warned me about re leaving intense NPD situation/ partner was that I will probably feel like something i.e. that point of reference, is missing for a while, a bit like a limb, and may feel numb, depressed etc.. Even though it is in fact as she says the NPD chains binding us that we are missing, the feeling of freedom is still complicated by their (chains) absence.

Look after yourself. I'll drink to your health tonight. Cheers.

[This message edited by Edie at 11:51 AM, February 17th (Friday)]


Maybe a long walk in the Hindu Kush would do it?
BW (me) 52
FWS 55
Together 29 years; 2 DDs 15 & 12
Dday Dec 08 (confessed) Feb 09 16 other OW confessed. OW17 tried her unedifying hardest until Aug 09. R'd.

Posts: 4960 | Registered: Nov 2009 | From: UK
juki
♀ Member
Member # 34784
Default  Posted: 12:33 PM, February 17th (Friday), 2012View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

Thanks Edie, I'll have one for you tonight too.

This is so painful. I know I could just tell him to come home, feel that blissful ignorance, and fool myself for a while longer.

But it won't change. How the hell do people get through this?

I know I won't cave. My body simply won't let me this time. But God it hurts. It would be so much easier if I didn't love him.


Me: 45
H(Sazerac): 46
M: 25,T: 27
S24

Posts: 550 | Registered: Feb 2012
jjct
♂ Member
Member # 17484
Default  Posted: 5:50 PM, February 17th (Friday), 2012View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

Hoax and chains. I believe we love the image, the lie, the fantasy, what we hope is real, the mask we were presented with as reality.
Add in the years'-long emotional investments, and it's hard...it takes time to unfurl the chains. For some, it can be in the form of a sudden moment of clarity. For others, the unbinding gradually occurs link by link.

Maybe it mirrors the way we were bound, our boundaries were eroded little by little, over time, we were trained - set up! to respond in certain ways. One day we realize we're uncomfortable walking on eggshells and wonder how the heck we got here.

I used mental tricks to help release the stickier links.
Instead of pining over how wonderful it used to be, I purposefully pictured the bad things; the abuse, the unnecessary drama, the obvious lack of empathy...

I held these things as real - and the other stuff as a false put-on to reel me in for supply.

I think we love the idea, the investment...not the person.
Easy. Since the person we were 'loving' is false, a construct, a mask.

Not real.
Love yourself first and mostly.
You are real.


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