Category Archives: Passive/Aggressive

“Doesn’t play well with others”

It might as well be tattooed onto my forehead.

In an effort to meet people my age who might have the same interests, I joined a Facebook group. I lurked for awhile to get a feel for the group and it seemed fine. The people are of both sexes and the only requirements are that they live in Oregon and be over 40. Sounds good, right?

And it was until a woman posted that her divorce was final that day, and while she left with her children because of his substance abuse, she still felt sad about the end of her marriage. She left when she realized that she had “stopped living” and his constant demands for money (she worked, he, of course, did not) meant that her kids were going hungry.

I was in the middle of composing a, “Way to go! Congratulations! You did the right thing for you and your children,” response when someone else (a woman, surprisingly) jumped in with a caustic paragraph condemning the newly-liberated woman for leaving her man when he was at his lowest. “You wouldn’t leave if he had cancer, would you? Alcoholism is the same thing. You’re a horrible person who will burn in hell.” or words to that effect.

Red flag in front of a bull! To compare substance abuse to cancer is not only ignorant, but cruel to a person who is still raw from being a victim of it at the hands of the man she meant to spend the rest of her life with.

I fired off an “I call bullshit on your comparison and here’s why…” reply and sat back to see what would happen. Several others joined in to tell Sarah Sunshine (yes, that’s her name) she was wrong to abuse another member of the group and that she needed to back off. She kept on, berating everyone who disagreed with her in rapidly escalating language. And then she started throwing around the c-word. Yep. She called three women posting to the thread cunts and said that she would rather shoot up a speed ball and follow it with a shot of vodka than be in a relationship with any of us narrow-minded, judgmental cunts.

That’s when the moderator of the group deleted the post.

Okay, fine. It did get out of control and name calling is the lowest form of debate. But then he posted (twice) telling everyone that he wouldn’t tolerate that kind of behavior and blah, blah, blah. Okay, I get it, but he was rather condescending, and to post twice? Really? He posted again this morning saying that he had some new moderators and there would be a crackdown on “inappropriate content.” Several people started asking in the comments what exactly that meant (as if he hadn’t already outlined his New Rules in the previous posts.) It got silly very quickly and I commented that I would never post anything I wouldn’t say to anyone’s face and couldn’t we all just act like adults?

My comment was deleted about ten minutes later. No warning, no questions asked, just gone. The new moderator posted an apology to another member for deleting his comment before reading it thoroughly. What? Someone else chimed in, asking WTF was going on with the comment deleting and I asked why my comment had been deleted as it was a harmless eye-roll.

I was told, with a shout out for all to see, that I was welcome to leave if I didn’t like my comments being deleted for no reason.

And so I left the group. This always happens. I’m also a thread killer – if I comment on something, very soon everyone quits posting. I dunno. I don’t think I’m especially combative online – I really don’t type anything I wouldn’t say to your face and I don’t mean to piss people off or whatever it is I do, but there ya go.

What say you? Did I do the right thing? Am I just being paranoid and/or crazy?


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One Year Ago Part Four

A year ago I was posting about how I hate curry (one of the top posts on this here blog, strangely enough) and pissed off at the narc’s efforts to pry every penny he could out of my bleeding corpse.

I was fighting the narc’s indoctrination, the voice in my head that dictated my every move based on what would or would not please the narc on any given day. He was making preparations to go work on his boat, leaving me alone for a few days and I had planned my escape. I was tied in knots, anxious not about my escape plan, but about how he would react and the possible consequences.

That Thursday, Awana and I traveled over to The Valley and found my home and had her hauled back to The Coast where I set about making modifications and moving in. The narc was due to be back some time between Sunday and Wednesday, but I knew it would be sooner because he was always hoping to catch me doing something he didn’t approve of, and that was pretty much everything.

Everything that could be fit into Awana’s van and my car was moved out of the narc’s house on January 20, 2013 and of course the narc had to try to make a scene when he came home to find my Fuck You note, but I handled it okay and was able to spend my first night in my very own space with not too much stress. I didn’t die or have a heart attack or have to explain a nasty public scene or any of the other horrible things the narc had trained me to worry about.

So much has happened in the past year, and all of it has been good. Or at least a Learning Experience 🙂 No catastrophes, I’m not living under a bridge or starving or in some kind of danger as the narc told me would happen if I ever didn’t have him to “carry” me through life. I have a good job, a warm place to live where everything is just the way I like it, I eat what I want, watch TV, spin & knit, go to the dog park, anything I want to do, any time I want to do it. I can talk on the phone with anyone I choose to with no interrogation afterwards. If a friend invites me out to do something I can go with no worries about narc consequences. I can visit friends and family at any time, even staying overnight with no worries that I’ll have to pay a price when I get home. No one is forcing me to eat or do anything that makes me unhappy. No one is laying guilt trips on me or beating me with words or denying me basic comforts like heat in the Winter. No one is beating my dog or threatening me.

I woke up today (again) with an indescribable feeling of unreality. As I looked around the dim room (it was not even 0630, damn you, Revy!) it felt like a dream and I was afraid I would soon wake and find myself back in that narc-made hell. But, no! This is my life now and it is fabulous! Can’t say that enough!

There was a Big Storm on Saturday, making travel unpleasant so Awana came over on Sunday to stay for a couple of nights. We went thrift shopping, out to eat, watched part of Dexter Season 6 (LOVE me some Dexter!) cooked, and generally amused ourselves doing what we like to do. And you know what? I can do it again today, or tomorrow, or next week. It might not sound like much to those of you have never lived in the shadow of a narc or similarly disordered person, but just being able to cook a meal of my choosing at a time of my choosing, letting the dog lick up the drips, listening to my choice of program on the radio, it’s all still a bit unreal and feels like an amazing luxury.

On Monday I deleted the old email account and changed every name and login for every account I’ve accumulated over the past 10+ years. My old ID is gone from the internetz.

Life is good!


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One Year Ago Part Three

Last December was a very bad month for me. The narc was amping up his abuses because I finally had a handle on his tactics, a look behind his mask, and he was not happy at all.

November ended with a fight about moving some plywood, of all things. He got mad that I didn’t jump up from my desk where I was doing paying work to help him before he needed to ask. The argument went round and round until I just didn’t care any more and shut down, refusing to respond to him at all. He pretended to “make an effort to change” which I knew was just another tactic to bring me back in line.

Because of my wonderful readers and lots of internet research, by December I knew I was dealing with a person with Narcissistic Personality Disorder and that there was no cure, no hope, and no reason to say with the asshole. I started to turn his conversational beatings around on him, refusing to play his games. I admit I found it thrilling, like poking the tiger in the cage at the zoo. Now that I was no longer emotionally invested in the relationship, I didn’t care if I made him mad and said what I really felt with no regard to what he might think. It was Sofia Uncensored. He hated it. I reveled in his hate. His anger and switching tactics only fueled my own anger and determination to get the hell out.

When he could no longer move me to tears or talk me into submission he changed his approach: suddenly he was helpless, unable to keep his finances in order, broke, sick, depressed, unable to remember a host of little things from one day to the next. He became a toddler again and he expected me to pick up his slack and take care of all his needs.

I had money in my bank account and a plan for the next time he left town, but he seemed determined to not leave me alone. I tried my best to keep from rocking the boat while standing up for myself – not an easy task. I didn’t want him to kick me out before I was ready to go, but I had a backup plan just in case.

And then Christmas was upon us, and he did his usual gift thing. I bought him clothes, careful to choose exactly what he said he wanted. He took back some clothes that he had given to me and whined constantly about how he felt like he’d been taken advantage of all these years by “everyone,” including me and that was why he wasn’t where he wanted to be in his life and why he could not be happy and treat me well. He was laying the guilt on thick at every opportunity.

I was angry. So very angry. I was very impatiently waiting for him to go out of town again so I could put my escape plan into motion. I was keeping many secrets from him and I felt justified in doing so because of his lies and manipulations. I no longer loved him. I did hate him with a red hot fiery passion and I knew that hatred was the primary force keeping my head above water, paddling slowly forward, looking for an opening to get away.

In less than a month I would be free. That last month was the hardest to endure, but I made it and have been narc free for almost a year!

Thank you all for traveling along with me on this journey.


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Love Advice

Yesterday one of my IRL FB friends posted this picture to my wall along with the accompanying blurb –

Les & Helen

Les and Helen were born on the same day. When they met as teenagers they eloped because their parents disapproved. After 75 years of wedded bliss they died just one day apart, aged 94…..’She didn’t want to see him die, and he didn’t want to live without her.’….How many Likes for this true love between this couple?♥♥!!!!

Sigh. I can’t tell you how annoyed I am every time I see another one of these stupid memes. So few of my IRL “friends” post anything of any real value on their FB pages. WTF are they doing all day? Now, I’m just as guilty of not posting much, or sharing clever, witty or inspirational things that other people write, but you will never see a “like this or you are a horrible person” memes on my wall.

Anyway. She accompanied this meme with the following:

An example of some stories that are happy ones. Being with the wrong person is defiantly hell, but finding the right one makes life worth living. I hope you do not give up on love.

Before you go, “Aw, that’s sweet! She must be so happy in her married life that she just can’t bear to see you all alone and miserable…” the person who sent this to me is someone I’ve written about here before. A little recap: P’s husband is an abusive asshole and probably a narcissist. He behaves like a child and corrects her behavior in public. The little time that I spent in company with the two of them was very uncomfortable as he was watching her every move and she had her jaw clenched and her eyes downcast.

So what is the message she’s trying to send to me? Does she think that she has anything to offer about relationships when her own is an oozing pile of crap? Really?

My reply:

I knew from a young age that I did not want to go through life two-by-two. I saw, even then, the inequalities and understood the trap that is marriage. Three times I gave in to pressure to join my life to a man who promised to be my Prince Charming. Three times I did everything I could think of to do (including looking the other way when they committed Deal Breakers – you really have no idea what I have put up with) to make our life what he had promised it could be. Three times I have had to uproot myself (twice my son, too) and make a new life because those men were assholes who only wanted to take everything they could from me, to use me until I was empty. I don’t believe in love at first sight. I don’t believe in happily ever after. I am content, very happy in fact, to live with my dog and my cat alone with only our needs to take care of. There’s just too damn much Happy, Happy, Happy ’round here to find room for a man! Kudos to you if you’ve found your Bliss – I don’t intend to discount your own happiness – but your path is not MY path and never will be.

In her defense, she really doesn’t know what I went through with the narc* so she can’t have a full understanding of why I might not be eager to jump back on the Couples Bandwagon. She did back off, though:

Happy your way is definitely what counts. I can fall into the desire to see people happy as I define it no matter how often I learn that it’s not valid. I have good intent thou. I hope the happy good life stays.

She’s not happy. Everything about her screams at how unhappy she is. What does she hope to accomplish with her bullshit wishes for me?

I just don’t understand some people…

* Taking El Guapo’s position and no longer capitalizing 🙂


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Why can’t I just say no?

M called me on the phone this afternoon. Like an idiot, I picked up. Still haven’t told him that I’m moving and had it in mind to slip it into the conversation. Naturally, the whole conversation was about him and I didn’t have a chance.

Just one little tidbit from Saturday: he has been complaining about money for years, how he never has enough and needs me to give him more. So we’re sitting in my car at the bus stop* and he starts and says, “I should make sure I have some money before I get on the bus!” whips out his wallet and fans it open to show a bunch of bills. “I have a wallet full of twenties, so I guess I’m set!” he says with a grin. WTF? Infer what you will. I went from asleep to pissed off in about half a second. Wheeeeeew…letting it go…

Anyway. So he calls this afternoon. His friends in Olympia sold him B’s car. She got a new one and they gave him a good deal.** He made it back alive and had a favor to ask. Would I be the legal owner of the car? You see, he can’t own more than one car or he won’t qualify for the disability claim*** he has been working so hard to get. He wants me to put the registration in my name and add the car to my insurance policy until he can sell his truck. IF he can sell his truck. Lots of open-ended mumbling.

Here’s where I should have just said, “no,” and stuck to my guns, but I did it once before when we were still living together and it was no big deal.

Obviously the situation is a bit different now and I have many reasons for not doing it. For one thing, I would have to put my actual address on the registration and I have not updated that info with the DMV. The registration would have to travel with the car and I don’t want him to have it. And who would pay for the insurance? And what happens when I move out of town? Would the insurance company have a problem if there was an accident and he was “borrowing” my car in another county? All of these things were running through my mind as I was trying to come up with an excuse to justify my “no.”

Gah! These knee-jerk, make-it-work-if-you-can reactions are making me crazy! His reaction to my hesitation was predictable: the reasoning voice telling me that it was totally legal and nothing bad would happen, asking why I had reservations, what is the problem (increasing volume, hard edge to his voice) aren’t we friends? Don’t I trust him? and on and on for about five minutes.

I said over and over that it just didn’t feel right, that there was an alarm bell going off in my head that told me it was a bad idea, and he kept pushing. Finally he backed off and said he had something else to ask.

Srsly? He is expecting money from selling some boat hardware that will be coming from New Zealand. Would I give him my PayPal info and deal with the money and give it to him? You see, he can’t show any income and is worried that if any cash goes into his checking account it will be detected and he won’t get his disability claim.

Sigh. I said that the best thing to do would be to set up his own PayPal account and get a debit card and use that to spend the cash if he didn’t want to make deposits to his checking account.

I mean, really? Not exactly laundering money, is it? But close, right?

Oh, he was not happy about that at all. By the end of the conversation he’s fake crying and I feel like puking from the stress of continued “no”s. He got nothing, so it’s a victory, but damn! What an exercise!

Received this e-mail a couple of hours later:

I’m sorry about the turn our conversation took today. It’s obvious you are working on being reasonable and congenial with me despite our problems. I want you to know I’m very grateful for that effort.

There is no one I trust more than you to attempt any dual ownership agreement on a vehicle. Once I got over the disappointment, it’s obvious why you wouldn’t want to do it – the whole thing is predicated on the possibility that nothing bad will ever happen, which is a long-shot gamble. I went ahead and insured and registered it in my name and will see how things work out. It may happen that I sell the truck and problem solved.

Much love, 

He called again later but I sent it to voicemail. Imagine my surprise when the message was an apology. He said that I was right to deny him and he’s sorry to put me in such a position, that it’s his problem and he was wrong to lay it on me. The first message cut off (there’s a limit on the length of voicemails with my carrier?) so he had to call again to finish his apology.

It’s exhausting.

* Lest you think I actually did him a favor for nothing, I want to set the record straight and say that I did it because it meant that I knew he would be out of the house and I could go get some stuff without having to deal with him and his continued requests for sex. I ain’t stupid 🙂

** I know, right? He can’t pay the property taxes or his boat moorage fee, but 6 months later he can buy a used car? And he has no job or legal income? And he had the nerve to lecture me when I came up with the money by working seven days a week? Right. Asshole.

*** I’ll say it again – dude is pretty fucked up physically from a couple of nasty accidents and I really have no problem with him getting disability payments. It’s not much money, so it’s not like he’ll be living large if he gets it. I do not, however, want to be involved in any illegalities related to getting that claim approved.


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The Latest Narc Crap

Last week he said that he wanted Thursdays to be “our day.” He wants me to come out there and take care of the bunnies and he will cook me a meal and we can work on getting back to the good stuff that he wants me to believe we had in the beginning. Thing is, we never had Good Times. It was all a lie. I see through his mask and I remember how it really was and I’m not going back there ever again.

So he sends me an e-mail asking if I’ll be paying his cell phone bill this month. I replied that I would be paying it in return for his caring for the rabbits, as we agreed – very business-like. And then he sent this:

I was thinking I could BBQ a burger for you or a sausage, or maybe both. You have to eat sometime! It could be early or late. If you’d like to do that and I know about what time you’d be there, I could have it ready as soon as you’d looked at the bunnies so it wouldn’t take a bunch of extra time.

We’ve just begun on the food you got, there is still a pile of old shavings. They have started eating hay, which they didn’t all winter. I’m giving them the long stalks of bolted kale, which they love. I don’t think there is anything needed right now but some of your special attention.

Apparently Larry bought three new guitars (of course they are very valuable and collectable) so he bought Pat one too, I imagine as a panacea. She had time to tell me she was learning to play and had trouble with the size of the fretboard and then Larry took over. Twice in our conversation she tried to interject something and he pretty much told her to shut up, he was talking.

I just stopped at Wallyworld to pick up prescriptions and they have bags of composted manure for $1.38. I think 20 bags should do for this year. Are you interested? If so, I’d like some help loading, unloading and spreading. The garden is ready to plant otherwise. 

Uh-huh. So the rabbits are fine, he wants to cook for me, he saw a couple that we’ve met a few times (more on that in a minute – it will relate) and he wants me to commit to working on the garden this year. Got it.

I didn’t respond because I have too much on my plate right now to care about his plans and I just couldn’t be arsed to muster the energy. I figured I would call when I was on the way, blast in and out again and that would be that. You know a Narc can’t let anything get out of his control, so he called last night and I picked up so I could tell him I would not be coming out today. Or any time in the near future 🙂

I told him that I had heard from The Boss and he wanted me to work a miracle (my specialty, actually) and that there was more on the way from The Other Boss and I would be booked for at least another week. He pretended to be happy for me that I have some work. Made all the appropriate noises and then veered off into his favorite subject – himself.

Blah, blah, blah about last weekend’s boat show, blah, blah, blah. Gave examples of how he could have “taken control” of situations but he stood back and let the people involved fuck up and blah, blah, blah, hasn’t he grown? Yeeeaaaahhhh.

Then he went on to describe (I was sitting at the computer drawing as quietly as I could because he hates to be ignored. I need to get  headset) seeing Larry and Pat and how Larry is a Piece of Work and blah, blah, blah. He then asked me if he behaved the same way as Larry (a Narc for sure, likely a Socio as well. He has (figuratively) beaten Pat down so far that it radiates off her in waves and I saw it clearly before I left M.)

My reply? “Not in public.” Long silence on the other end.

He asked me why I never pointed it out to him (!!!) and that he really regrets that I see our relationship that way. He’s a changed man, now, and wouldn’t dream of treating me that way, blah, blah, blah. By this time I was getting bored and, message delivered, was not concerned with what he thinks.

I gave him the truth about Larry and Pat’s relationship (I’ve spoken to her alone, he has not. I am confident that I have a clear picture of what her life is like and it’s an ugly one, painted in shades of gray and despair) and then I told him that he treated me the same way.

That hurt, so he changed the subject and asked me to compare him to the men we both know that are real assholes. Yep, that was edifying for him. I gave examples of how he does the very same things that he claims to dislike about them. On and on. God, I was a bitch.

He tried another tactic, questioning me about TB and TOB and the work they sent over and asking how far down on my list he is. I told him that spending time with him was much less valuable than the $30 per hour they were paying me and that I would let him know when there was room on my list of Important Things To Do 🙂

Blah, blah, blah, whining, more blah, blah.

I told  him that making money in my career field is the most important thing in my life right now and that I can’t even consider turning it down.

“You could always tell someone ‘no’,” he whined.

“I’m telling you no,” I replied.

Oh, he did not like that one bit. Too fucking bad, though, that’s the way things are. I did not tell him that I will be moving Towanda over to the Valley ASAP. He doesn’t know about Towanda and he won’t hear about it from me. I will be good and gone and come back for the rabbits and we will be officially OVER.

His last words to me were about how he wants to hold my naked body some time real soon. Couldn’t have a conversation without reminding me of my Primary Duty. Asshole.


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Confession Time

I had contact with the Narc this week. Three times, in fact.

He called me up Tuesday evening and asked if I was free for dinner. I was starving and said yes if I could pick the place. We met at my favorite Mexican restaurant and I ordered my favorite meal. He started out polite and mellow, very like the mask he presented when we first met. I’m sure he was thinking that I would fall into his arms, a victim of his charming demeanor. It sounded to me like he’d been working on his sound bites for quite some time – the delivery was so smooth. I was ready for Mr. Hyde to show up and curious to see what form he would take this time. It’s like a fascinating experiment – I can’t look way because I want to see what the blob turns into next.

About half way through the meal, his tone changed. Oh, no one on the outside would have noticed it, but it was like a red cape in front of a bull to me. He went from asking questions that any stranger would ask to trying to pry out of me where I was living, what it cost, what “things” I might have bought, etc. My throat closed up and I went into Evasion Mode. I gave no outward sign that he was getting to me, and I think I was pretty convincing. When I drove away I headed for the library (not a direct route home as I didn’t want to take a chance that he would follow me, but there’s no way he could be stealthy in a big ol’ Ford F350 truck), seething the whole way because he thinks that I’m the same person he has tortured for the last 10 years. Does he think I’m stupid? Don’t answer that 🙂

This little meeting confirmed that I can hold my own with him, not losing my temper or allowing him to walk on me. I did divulge that I’m house-sitting for the next couple of weeks and will not be available to watch the cat for him. He said that he would try to make other arrangements. He asked if he could come over and watch TV “or something.” Yeah…Hell NO! I told him it was not appropriate, was not going to happen and not to ask again and he dropped it.

I was angry that he was still trying his bullshit all the while protesting that he is now enlightened and understands why I would be punishing him for his transgressions now. He raved about how the Celebrex takes the edge off his anger and anxiety and that he’s a New Man. Whatever.

Then on Wednesday, after a day full of good news, he calls me and says that he was cleaning Snowball’s butt and cut her with the scissors and would I please come out and take a look before it got dark? He was worried that it was serious (Angora rabbits have incredibly thin and delicate skin and they don’t always flinch [being prey animals they don’t show weakness] when you’re getting close to their skin like a dog or cat will and you can’t feel the difference between hair and skin as you cut – you have to be careful and know where you are, anatomically speaking) and he “valued” my “expert” opinion. Sigh. Well, the day had been awesome up ’til then and nothing could possibly get me down. I do have an obligation to the buns.

I hurried out there and examined Snowball. The cut was bleeding, but not seriously at that point. I washed it out some more, sealed the edge with a bit of super glue (relax – it’s exactly what the vet would have done with this type of wound) and went on my way. The whole time he was chatting with me, telling me…actually, I don’t really remember what he was babbling on about. I was bubbling with my good news and almost told him that I would be working a lot over the Summer, maybe moving over to The Valley and how happy I was about it, but he was droning on and I didn’t want to share. I left after he thanked me profusely but before he could invite me to stay for dinner.

And then yesterday I went out again to look at Snowball and make sure she’s not swollen or anything (the wound has closed and is well on the way to healing – rabbits heal very fast) start her on some antibiotics just in case, check Steve and groom them both. M said that he had a doctor’s appointment in the morning, so I tried to get out there early enough to miss him, but no dice – he showed up about 10 minutes after I arrived. He came out to the rabbit yard and talked while I did the bunny stuff. The topic was how I should move back out there and how he could live on his boat much cheaper than whatever I was doing (what am I doing, by the way?) it would solve so many problems, blah, blah, blah.

We sat and drank a cup of tea. He nattered on about how he is a New Man and he hopes that I’ll have the patience to see him through his Personality Transplant (my words) so we can go back to how it used to be when we were happy. At that point I had heard enough and began to get testy. He told me that what I am doing is “punishing” him. He kept interjecting phrases like, “I don’t mean to accuse you of anything…” and “I don’t mean to discount what you’re saying or feeling, but…”

I had told him when he arrived that I had to meet someone and was going to leave at a specific time. He kept up with his bullshit, delaying my leaving, trying to control me, and that really pissed me off. I left in a rage and it wasn’t until I was well away from there that I figured out why. He told me that by doing something for myself (leaving his ass) I was “punishing” him for things he still doesn’t believe he did. That’s the whole crux of the matter. It’s always about him, and it will always be about him and what I want or feel will never matter.

I blew off his bad vibes and got packed to go take care of The Boys – two pugs and a Boston terrier. They are Princes in their home and they know it. Sabu has her nose a bit out of joint, but we’re working it out. At the moment, all is silent, but it can’t last much longer so I’ll try to wrap this up.

M called last night. I wanted to tell him what I thought about his “punishing” statement, so I picked up. What followed was a long dialogue. He had obviously prepared his statements. I shot holes in every one of his “epiphanies.” I refuted each of his statements and gave examples of why he is wrong. Oh, yes, I was prepared, too. He was not expecting me to fight back, and I think he was surprised. I told him to keep studying, that he is getting closer to the answer to his psychology, but he’s not there yet.

Yes, I was condescending. Yes, I was rather nasty at times. He has to know that I see through his mask. Maybe he doesn’t want to believe that yet. He said that he’s totally open to whatever I have to say and that he will listen to me. If I find that he’s not listening he gave me permission (!!!) to yell at him to get his attention. Hah! I wish I had recorded him so you all could hear what a desperate Narc sounds like. I need to figure out a way…

I don’t think he got any satisfaction out of the conversation. Oh, sure, he got me to talk to him, but he didn’t hear what he wanted to hear and he’s not going to.

You might think that this was a ridiculous exercise that will only lead to pain, but I’m hopeful that it will lead him to understand that I’m never coming back, that it doesn’t matter how he “changes” or what he thinks, it’s over. If he comes to that conclusion on his own, it will be easier for me in the end, as he will be able to complete his Narc Cycle and move on, forgetting me forever instead of stalking me to the ends of the earth. Every time he tries to convince me to come back I emerge from the confrontation with a stronger conviction to stay away. By sparring with him this way, I feel powerful. He is not physically threatening to me and now he is no longer emotionally threatening, either. I feel no qualms about moving for work and telling him some time after it’s done. Or maybe not at all. I will need to come back to care for the rabbits, but there might be a chance to rehome them over in The Valley, and that would solve all of my problems at once.

Time and distance solve all problems, just as saltwater washes all cares away. Bonus points to whoever can name the author I just paraphrased. Hint: he wrote 20 books in a series and a movie was made that incorporated pieces from three of them.


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He Wants Counseling!

Counseling! This just in:

I talked with B last night. He says he knows a 70 year old woman in [a town 45 minutes North of here] who is an excellent marriage counselor. He and his wife saw her about eight years ago when he says their marriage was on the rocks. He says she is especially insightful (his description). In the intervening years she spent five on an air force base in California counseling returning vets with Post Traumatic Stress Syndrome. Now she’s back.

As B pointed out, there are problems people have they can’t solve themselves. He was particularly reluctant because his religion teaches that problems can be solved with prayer, but they apparently learned a lot and came out good.

I am willing to do anything it takes to fix us. Anything. I love you and wish to spend the rest of my life with you. I believe with all my heart we are good for each other and can make it work.

Srsly? We’ve had the counseling talk before – M said that he and his ex went but it “didn’t do any good,” they just never could learn to communicate. She was stubborn and passive/aggressive and his big heart just couldn’t bear to be in a relationship where his partner was so ambivalent about him. I can say now that she was probably shut down emotionally from all his abuse (as I shut down) and was not interested in continuing being tortured, so, duh, counseling wouldn’t help.

I can see it all now – he plays the sensitive, traumatized man who regrets his actions and promises never to sin against me again while in the therapist’s office and things at home would continue to be the same, maybe with more days between blow-ups, but nothing essential would change. He would sound totally logical and concerned only for  my well-being, his whole life devoted to my happiness and he doesn’t know where it went wrong. Anything out of my mouth would be exaggerations, lies, misunderstandings, etc. that he would explain away with a chuckle and a conspiratorial wink at the therapist. And what does her age have to do with anything?

Also, where would the money come from to pay for all this therapy? Isn’t he broke? Doesn’t have a cent to his name? Gonna be living under a bridge any day now?

I call Bull Shit!


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Narc Update

M has been love bombing me with e-mail, pretending to be the man I fell for. If I were a different person, I might be tempted to go back, at least for a trial, but I am a bitch and only laugh and/or shake my head at his antics. Here’s an entry from Sunday –

I’d like to share with you some things that have influenced me over our time together that have been poorly understood, if at all. Maybe this will give you some insights.

When we moved to SH, I asked you and H (my son, who was 14 at the time and a very difficult teenager) if you wanted to do this and even asked H repeatedly. But when things started not working out so well and H realized he didn’t want to be there (or maybe anywhere else, who knows?) I took his attitude too personally as an insult, which was magnified by how he treated you, which made me so mad I could slap him. I thought then that I was fighting the good fight for my woman, but know now that you two had your ways and you grew to understand each other, whereas I was left out because I was too violent and not tolerant enough for sympathy or understanding.

When we lived in the duplex and H and I had our first physical fight, it was over something he said to you, in his way, that tripped me to madness. I still thought I was doing the right thing for you. When we lived on S–Place, one day when you and I were going somewhere and we doubled back and found H on the phone, from which he was restricted, we took him with us a a punishment. He planted a good one in my face at the door on the way out, which shocked us both and he began his journey back to being a decent human that day, I saw it. He was a new kid, not a boy anymore. But I refused to forgive him and carried my anger about how I felt he had cheated me and you of our happiness, for a long time, perhaps until just recently when he now treats me with respect, despite myself.

The two of you (H and you), as well as your mother and your sister have a facial expression that says “fuck you, stupid human”, which you all have focused on me for good reason and no reason at all (your sister and mother). I have come to react instinctively to that look, as an adder who’s tail you just stepped on. The day I told you to go fuck yourself was just such a day, with that same look and even though I deserved it in every way, I would not back down. My relationship with your son has been predicated on my reaction to that look and for that I am deeply sorry today, because I think he has forgiven me for treating him like a shit, while I have not forgiven him (until very recently).

My father told me from the first time someone tried to beat me up in school that I should never start a fight, but always finish it. He is a stupid man to have engrained that in his boy. I have never hurt anyone in anger until I wrestled H to the carpet and have never been hit by anyone but him. But I have the tongue and sting of the adder, there is no doubt. At one time you applauded me for this, which didn’t help, I can tell you now. I am not proud, but ashamed of how I’ve been on those occasions in our relationship when I lashed out at you and H, deeply ashamed. I had no right, have no right, to insult those I love for any reason, even if I feel hurt myself. The only way to win a person’s love, is with love. I have always known this, which is, I think, how I won your heart. I can tell you today that the man who loves has won out over the adder. Because at last, the snake has bitten his own tail.

See there? He is a Changed Man! The cause of all our troubles is that my son and I look at him wrong and he can’t help his reaction. H and I have a way of joking and talking fast around a subject to avoid hashing out something painful, to minimize the awkwardness of the Teen Years and M was just too hurt by that to behave like a human being, and it’s not his fault. He was trained by his father to behave that way.

Whatever. Nothing gives him the right to treat me or my son in that way. What he saw as disrespect was in fact a man-child trying to establish his place in the pack (as all male children do) and M was unwilling to remember his own struggle and help H to develop appropriate responses. What M created was a very angry, sullen teen boy who felt threatened all the time as M judged every move he made and H was always found lacking, no matter how I defended or explained him, no matter how hard he tried – nothing was ever Good Enough for M.

It’s surprising that H has become such a polite, well-mannered man, gentle and empathetic who seems to harbor no animosity towards M.

And this yesterday:

I am 200% committed to communicating with you. This week has been a sledge hammer to the head and a spike to the heart – much of what I’ve said and done to you over the years has been a big mistake, the biggest mistake of my life, no contest. You are much more important to me than anything and I mean anything, including my own selfish demands that I’ve put out there as so essential.

I’m a fool. I can do better, much better. Not even sure how I got off on the wrong track, maybe it was arguing with H all the time. Anyway, I hope to get another chance, though I can hear you say I don’t deserve it. The beast in me died this week, I assure you. You struck him a blow through the heart. The man that’s left is your old lover and he still loves you, more than anything, more than ever.

Another assertion that he’s a changed man! I suppose this is where I fall all over myself to apologize and take him back unconditionally, right? Dr. Jekyll was always a charmer 🙂

He was supposed to be gone yesterday and sent this early in the morning:

It would be good to see you and chat, or not, as you please. You will find a man much changed. One thing is, this is the first time in 46 years I have not had at least one dog, if not three, so I’d love to see my friend. I know I’m always going on about that dog, but I love her.

He misses the dog? How sweet! He did nothing but complain about the dog and how I was always letting Dog Discipline go by the board, how I was spoiling her, ruining the training that he had done. The fact is, he is far too brutal for a dog of this type. A complacent Labrador would have learned very quickly to do what he says and stay out of his way, but a dominant herding dog (Australian Shepherd/Border Collie) is not a dog you can beat into submission. She must be convinced that it’s a good idea before she is willing to comply with the wishes of a mere human – she knows her job and will not be sidetracked. He has never understood that, or he refuses to acknowledge that she needs something different than his heavy-handed notion of discipline.

And there’s more:

It is I who must thank you for your patience. I realize now that I have been far on the wrong side of your comfort level for a long time and misinterpreted everything. You have again and again given me more latitude than you have ever offered anyone. It grieves me that now that I finally get it, I may not get a chance to show good faith.
I am sincere. As you once loved and trusted me, I hope you can find your way to do so again.

This in response to a note I sent thanking him for his patience and understanding as I sort out my issues. Trying to keep Mr. Hyde at bay until I get my stuff back.

“On paper” he sounds good, right? Saying all the right things, having an apologetic attitude, promising to respect my feelings and giving me time to sort myself out. The underlying message, however, is that I will be coming back after I come to my senses once more. That ain’t gonna happen.

He will be gone for about three hours tomorrow. I have spent the day dithering about what to do. I could borrow or rent a truck and just make a clean sweep, but there won’t be much time (he is making sure to give me short notice to try to catch me when I’m there, but I see through his plan) to get my stuff out and I don’t really have any men to rely upon to help out.

I could just take my car and stuff what I can into it, but it means leaving Granny’s table behind (the only thing that I really can’t live without) but that would mean Mom would be hopping mad and would drive over here to take it back and goddess only knows what would happen then 🙂

I found myself unable to make a decision, frozen in a state of deer-in-the-headlights, hearing his voice in my head chastising me for whatever I decide to do. My stomach was in knots, head whirling, just…frozen. He has trained me well, and that pisses me off.

And then Awana called. We talked about the options and she offered to let me borrow her van – bigger than my car, no need to rent or borrow a truck, probably big enough to get the essentials out of M’s house, but small enough to (hopefully) not raise his ire too much. If I drive it myself, she won’t be associated with this whole mess so he can’t try to find me through her. He won’t recognize the van so my getaway should be clean.

I want this to be over, but I don’t want to freak him out so that he does something rash. When he left his wife (he and I worked together but were not involved at the time,) according to him, it was an amicable break – he still talked to her, finished up the repairs to their house (she bought him out) that he had agreed to, even watched her dog on occasion. There didn’t seem to be any rancor, he seemed calm and reasonable, but then again, I only saw what he wanted me to see. At the time I thought it was admirable that two people could break up with no anger or harsh words, just a gentle parting of the ways. I wonder now how it really went down, while hoping that he and I can have the same sort of parting of the ways.

Awana says that as long as I have a reason to go back to his house I am still involved with him. She is advocating a Clean Break, sever all ties, make a very clear statement that he and I are over and move on with my life.

I find myself immobile, not hoping for a reconciliation, but at least something less than a war or smear campaign. I want him to get on with his life, find his own happiness so that he will leave me to find my bliss with no bad feelings hanging onto my coat tails.

Is any of this even possible with a Narc? Am I just making myself crazy over something that is never going to happen and I should just wake up and get on with it?


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“Hoovering” is a term that describes the way a Narc (or similar) abuser tries to bring the victim back into the fold, make them feel sorry for the Narc, or heap obligations onto them until they are vacuumed right back into the abusive situation. I’ve been familiar with this term for the last few months and I have let myself be drawn back into the abuse in the hope that if I had the knowledge to call him on his bullshit I could fight back and he would see what was happening and understand that he needed to change if we were to stay together.

Obviously, he is not interested in my feelings or what I need to live a fulfilled life – it’s all about HIS needs and wants and I am nothing more than a means to that end.

Today went pretty well, considering how it started. Since I was already up, I put on some thermal bibs and (after Awana and I took the dog to the dog park for a much needed romp) headed outside (it wasn’t much warmer inside anyway) and put insulation on the water hose and attempted to hook up the drain hose. Yep. I need more drain hose. It wasn’t even close. The box may say the hose is ten feet long, but it won’t stretch that far and it has to be loose to drain properly.

I gave up and went to work where it was (obviously) slow enough to allow me to blog. I did a final e-mail check because I planned to make a quick trip to Fred Meyer in the hope that they carry more drain hose and then I wanted to come home and veg in front of the TV with a silly movie and just not move or think until early tomorrow. I am tired. So very tired after so many short nights in a row. Fatigue has caught up with me and I need some serious Z’s for the next two very busy days.

This toxic missive was waiting in my inbox. The subject line is “furniture” so I knew I should open it. (Bold are my comments):

When you come on Thursday, I don’t know what you intend to take, so I thought I’d make a list of what I’d like to keep and one of things we own in common that you might want.
Bed not a chance I want that
Old cedar chest (my clothes box) His
Couch His
Recliner chair from D His
Coffee table (TV table) His
Can I have the old Pfaff sewing machine? It’s the only machine that will sew heavy canvas goods and I could use it to make money. It was given to me by a mutual friend and I really want it. What say you?

You are welcome to the treadle, if you want it. Not a chance – it’s a POS and I have no room for anything that is not useful
The rugs are yours (I assume you don’t want the old rag in the bedroom.) Really? He bought them. I think this is a ploy to see how much space I have
If you have room for the dining room table, please take it. Glass top. I hate it – it always looks dirty and it’s his
You are welcome to the coat rack next to my desk, if you want it. Again, not a chance. It’s his.
Please chose any lamps you want, but please leave me a couple, one for the bedroom and one for the living room (if you like the old lamp you fixed, please take it) There are a grand total of three floor lamps in the whole place. I did buy two of them, but neither is a prize and I have plenty of light thanks to all the built-in lights in Towanda. No thanks
The foam pad you covered was much too big for the boat, so I brought it back and it’s yours Manky old foam, even if it is covered in nice fabric is still manky old foam good for nothing here
The antique dresser and mirror next to the bed is yours Nope. He has a great story of how he acquired it to store for a friend who is now dead. I hate it as the drawers are all messed up and hard to open and close
The big leather chair and ottoman are yours, if you want Not a chance, even if they would fit through Towanda’s door
You are welcome to the old rocker, please take it. Again, nope – it belonged to his grandmother and is so uncomfortable that no one can sit in it for more than three minutes
The armoir -or portable closet, don’t know what it’s called  😉  is yours, I’ll empty it. It’s a wardrobe, dickwad, and we’ve both called it a wardrobe since you bought it. While it is nice, it will not fit through the door here, so nope, not interested.

I miss you so much it hurts deep. You are all I had to live for. All else is just fluff and filler. I told you a couple weeks ago I would do anything (and quit doing others), anything to make you happy and make up for what I’ve done and I meant it. Whatever. So very many promises, so very many lies. I’m done. Furniture will not lure me back, nor will even more promises that you never intend to keep.

My physical reaction was immediate and violent – nausea. I nearly hurled onto the shop floor. My gut squirmed and I had such a strong feeling of revulsion you would think I had just swallowed mayonnaise. I detest mayo. And eggs. This was eggs covered in mayo and forced into my mouth and down my throat. Harshed my mellow, Itellyouwhat.

I closed the shop, heart heavy, a cloud of gloom hanging over me. I knew it was just a knee-jerk reaction that he has trained me to have, so I began to talk myself into a better place. I am just so tired today.

Dragged myself to the store for hose and Awana (A from here on out) called. Just what I needed. That girl can heap abuse on a man 🙂 I feel loads better now, but very tired.

I will answer his note tomorrow and cancel Thursday. I will reschedule for next week and send a list of the things that I want, which are all mine, no question. I don’t want his shit, material or psychic.

My reaction to his e-mail tells me that I am not ready to face him even if it means his next contact might be to tell me he’s burning my stuff in the yard. I can let it go with no pain. I’m out, I’m whole and I’m not going to be hoovered back by that asshole. Ain’t gonna happen.

And three people said they loved my hair, so, yeah, I still rock! 🙂


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