Sunday, November 23, 2008

Pathological Envy vs. the Thanksgiving Spirit


Wrath is cruel, and anger is outrageous [overwhelming]; but who is able to stand before envy? Prov. 27:4

And then, of course, we get to the heart of malignant narcissism, Narcissistic Envy.
"What Makes Narcissists Tick" by Kathy Krajco, pg. 46 in e-book.

Their lack of gratitude is the natural result of their extreme covetousness ... All the other sins of the narcissist spring from this persistent and pervasive covetousness.
Thanksgiving -- The Holiday Narcissists Will Never 'Get'"

The envy of the narcissist is pathological because it is all-consuming and destructive. It is the fouled spring from whence her abuses flow outward into your life. Any good thing you have...be it material, or your accomplishments, your worthy and noble character traits, or attention in any form...must be sullied and/or stolen in order to tamp down the monstrous upwelling of envy in the narcissist's heart. Kathy summed it up correctly when stating that the heart of malignant narcissism is their envy. Both she and I have seen pathological covetousness (envy) as the evil root from which their malignant behaviors spring. It's the one emotion which drives them more than any other. More than anger. More than hatred. Envy, thy name is narcissist.

Covetousness is the inevitable fruit of ingratitude...a line of reasoning I have fleshed out in my Thanksgiving post of last year linked above.

I love Thanksgiving. I hope you do, too. Grateful people are able to enter into the true spirit of this day. Know this too: grateful people are happy people. There is healing and peace in the spirit of gratitude. Seize it and don't let go.

36 comments:

Kathleen said...

I recently read last year's Thanksgiving post, and it upset me very much. I saw my ILs all over it.
What exactly are they COVETOUS OF?? Then I re-read your current and past Thanksgiving post.
In my case, they are covetous of ANYTHING and EVERYTHING.
Daughter has a prom, please don't come that weekend. "NO. We ARE coming THIS weekend."
Someone says something nice about me or my husband or children, one of them pipes up with a disparaging remark "But I'm only joking."
I'm accused of being materialistic -- by my SIL who can't afford to help her son thru college, but went and bought SURROUND SOUND in her HOME!

But the most disturbing acts of covetousness in my ILs is the outright accusation of, after GIVING them something, is I didn't GIVE ENOUGH.

When my DH and my DDs and me went to visit his parents one week we were surprised to find we also had to care for DH's nephew. We took him everywhere and paid for everything. I called my SIL and informed her we had plans for Friday evening and would be unable to watch him. She was LIVID!! "My MOM SAID YOU WOULD take him for the week." No thank you for the 6 previous days and nights. No financial remunierations.

We bought a timeshare and invited my DH's whole family. Only one BIL and his wife came. Beautiful place.
After the cutoff, my N SIL said (cut and pasted from the actual email:
"It wasn't a free vacation, it was a free place to stay. "

How terribly pathetic are those who are not thankful for what God has given them and others have given them. How terribly sad to live a life where you are discontent with your blessings - or, worse yet, to be blind to them.
I wish everyone here a blessed holiday.

- Kathleen

Anonymous said...

" Because they don't need you, they don't appreciate you. They aren't grateful for anything you do for them either. Anything you do for them was theirs by right. You were only fulfilling your duty."

My parents stay at our home for a week during the holidays. My N-sister shows up on the days that are not the holiday for free meals, under the guise of visiting with our parents. She makes faces at the food (but hey, it's a free meal that she doesn't have to buy, or prepare, and there are no dishes to wash because it's not her house). She never compliments the food, there's always a dig or insult, a compliment would mean that I've done something well, and that's not going to happen. If I make pumpkin pie, she whines that she only likes apple pie and if I make apple pie, she'll scream that I did it on purpose because I know she only likes pumpkin pie. After dinner she leaves the table while we clean up-I am the maid.

She behaves this way because she's envious, I can cook and she can't. Anyone who has a talent that she doesn't have, she slams them, or puts down what they do. She once nastily described a newly engaged co-worker as "one of those happy people." It's unbelievable.

TIM said...

THIS WILL BE MY FIRST THANKSGIVING AFTER DECIDING TO GO NC AFTER A LONG BATTLE WITH NMOM AND EITHER NDAD OR ENABLER. I HAVE MIXED EMOTIONS,BECAUSE MY NMOM AND NDAD ONLY HAD 1 CHILD(ME)AND 1 GRANDCHILD(MY DAUGHTER). UNFORTUANAETLY I KNOW MUST BE STRONG DUE TO THE STRESS THAT NMOM HAS CAUSED MY FAMILY AND I OVER THE YEARS.

EVERY SO OFTEN MY NMOM WOULD TELL ME THAT I'M NEVER HAPPY AND WOULD BLAME MY WIFE,BUT I WAS ACTUALLY UNHAPPY BECAUSE I HAVE ALWAYS FELT OBLIGATED TO GIVE HER MY TIME. MY WIFE GOT TIRED OF THE DRAMA AND THE SARCASTIC COMMENTS OF NMOM,ESPECIALLY ON HOLIDAYS AND SHE DECIDED TO STOP ATTENDING HOLIDAYS OR ANY OTHER DAYS AND NMOMS HOUSE.

THIS DECISION BY MY WIFE MADE ME FEEL REALLY ANGRY INSIDE. I WAS ANGRY THAT I WOULD HAVE TO GO ON HOLIDAYS TO NMOMS HOUSE WITH JUST MY DAUGHTER AND I. WHAT NMOM DIDN'T UNDERSTAND IS THAT MY UNHAPPINESS AND ANGER WAS DUE TO HER BEHAVIOR THAT BROKE UP MY FAMILY DURING THE HOLIDAYS.

I WAS SO TIRED OF HAVING 2 THANKSGIVINGS, 2 CHRISTMAS, 2 BIRTHDAYS FOR MY DAUGHTER AND I. BASICALLY 2 OF EVERYTHING. I FELT SO STRETCHED AND AT THE SAME TIME ANGRY AND STRESSED OUT.

I STILL SOMETIMES WONDER IF MAYBE, I DIDN'T DO A GOOD ENOUGH JOB OF BRINGING MY NPARENTS INTO MY INNER CIRCLE. BUT ON THE OTHER SIDE THEY ALWAYS DEMANDED THAT THEY HAVE SOMETHING SEPERATE AT THIER HOUSE.

WHY DO NPEOPLE ALWAYS HAVE TO SEPERATE THEMSELVES FROM OTHERS? FOR EXAMPLE MY NMOM TAUGHT MY DAUGHTER TO CALL HER GAMA INSTAEAD OF GRANDMA AMD PAPA INSTEAD OF GRANDPA. THIS MIGHT BE OKAY WITH A 3OR 4 YEAR OLD, BUT NOT WITH A 7 YEAR OLD. I ADVISED MY NMOM OF MY DISAPPROVAL OF THIS BECAUSE WHEN MY DAUGHTER WOULD SPEAK OF THEM AT SCHOOL, THE OTHER KIDS DIDN'T UNDERSTAND WHO MY DAUGHTER WAS TALKING ABOUT. MY NMOM SAID TO ME THAT THEY NEEDED DIFFERENT NAMES TO SEPERATE THEMSELVES FROM THE OTHER GRANDPARENTS.

THIS HOLIDAY SEASON WILL BE SPENT DOING 1 EVENT. IT WILL BE WITH THE PEOPLE WHO CALL THEMSELVES AND ACT LIKE FAMILY. TOMMOROW I AM GOING TO MY THERAPIST AND I HOPE SHE CAN HELP ME GET OVER THE GUILTY FEELINGS THAT I HAVE FOR LEAVING NMOM AND NDAD ALNOE FOR THE HOLIDAYS.

Terry Scoville said...

After 49 years of dealing with my N brother who has never once stood up for me, I am truly beginning to understand how N's operate. Tim as for the "special Gama" name it so stinks. Just a way for the N to get the attention focused on them.

For example, my N brother is ridiculous. He introduces himself with his full name when he telephones me.As if I don't know his voice? Doubtful? How bizarre is that? What, he wants me to stand at attention because his N of a horse's "arse" is calling? Get over it. Just the first detection of his voice and I am ready to rip the phone out of the wall forever.

My sarcasm is honest and as you can tell I am still a work in progress. I am happy to be spending the holidays with real true friends. Not my brother.

I know it is hard to remove ourselves from the feeding pool of the N. Yet our survival depends on it.

Anonymous said...

"If I make pumpkin pie, she whines that she only likes apple pie and if I make apple pie, she'll scream that I did it on purpose because I know she only likes pumpkin pie."

I had a sister who tried that. I took the apple pie and slammed it right in her face. She screamed and cried about it, but never bothered me again.

Anonymous said...

Just to let everyone know. If I would lay down my weapon, we could have a lovely Thanksgiving. Per NMom.

I pretty much figured this would more or less be the approach. N-Mom conveys the impression she would LOVE it if I were there and it's my hostile attitude that keeps me away. Only I will ever know the truth of the WHOLE situation.

As far as covetous goes --- it was shocking to me, but explained so much --- when my youngest daughter said to me, after a series of unfortunate events --- "Mom, I think Grandma is jealous of you!"

She also wants whatever I have that I value deeply, or that she deems to be of value. Basically, she believes my life belongs to her.

Frankly, I feel crazy as a June bug just writing about it.

Kathleen said...

Wow!! Anonymous, that must be what it is - what your Sister said, that her co-worker was "one of those happy people."
Don and I were HAPPY together - we could live in a tent. Who cares?
We're happy with the children we have. We're happy with the (very tiny) house we have. We're happy that we reap from our labor -- we EARNED what we have.
Even when he was dying, we went out and were HAPPY. We took the kids to Broadway shows, to a fancy 5 star floating restaurant on New Year's Day. I even surprised him with 50 guests and all the trimmings for a wedding vow renewal. We had music and danced and we were HAPPY. We knew he was dying. My daughter went to her proms and got accepted into the college of her choice - she was HAPPY. My DH took each girl out separately on "dates" when he could. He was, they were, HAPPY.

And we still are!!

And the ILs are all MISERABLE. They wrung their hands, but never offered any type of support (It's too HARD on us). They backstab each other, they backstabbed my DH after he was gone. They tried to STEAL our happiness by stealing specific dates to visit, pushing the kids out of their beds, even when offered ALTERNATE DATES.

They are covetous of our happiness, of our HUMAN-NESS, and HUMANE-NESS. our ABILITY to LIVE IN REALITY and ACCEPT IT.

- Kathleen

So, what IS in a heart? said...

Liked Apple Pie? Liked Pumpkin pie? Couldn't make up his/her/its mind? Just can't choose between the two?

Do I have the recipe for you:

Penzye's APPLE PUMPKIN PIE!

Sure to be a hit with everyone, except for those who are fundamentally unhappy.

Anonymous said...

LOL!!!
My guess is that the N at the table would say: "Pie? I only eat cake!"

My favorite Thangsgiving story (so similar to everyones) is when my N-brother left his daughter at my house over the 4 day Thanksgiving weekend because he was out with the new girlfriend and the ex-wife was "doing her thing")..but it was okay because my niece got to see her cousins. We had fun.

Monday morning I get "the call", stupid me, I thought it was to say thank you for showing my daughter a great thanksgiving & fun weekend...NO! The call was to rip into me for not calling the girlfriend on her birthday! Indentially, the girlfriend's BD was Thanksgiving day, when i was hosting 16 people (one being his own daughter)...BEST of all...I HAVE THE SAME BIRTHDAY!!! Did N brother call me??? No! Did I call him to complain??? NO! I didn't even notice he didn't call for my bd because: 1) I am a grown-up and 2) I was too busy enjoying my Thanksgiving! And isn't that the best revenge?

Happy Thanksgiving all!

Anonymous said...

My indecisive pie eating sister will look for any tiny thing to disrupt the good time everyone else is having.

Last Thanksgiving she made a statement (for example) "The sky is green." My husband casually said, "No, it's blue." She began to stare daggers at him, how DARE he disagree with anything she says, even if it's obviously wrong. I told my husband, I was familiar with the look on her face- it was the look of "I'm going to get you back."

The following morning, she set her alarm for 6 AM, went to the kitchen for a cup of coffee, and back to her bedroom. She slammed the door so hard I swear the house shook. She woke us up, including my toddler who had a bad head cold. It took me a half hour to get the baby back to sleep. At that point I couldn't get back to sleep, so I went to the kitchen to have breakfast with my mom. My N-Sister came into the room, stood behind my mother's chair and smiled at me. She is pure evil.

Anonymous said...

Anna, the n`s that were in my life wanted me to be like them. Even in the most pettiest ways. Eat what they ate, interperate scripture the way they saw it, etc. Basically, you couldn`t be your own person.They would mock me and put me down because I wouldn`t do things their way. Do normal people act this way or is it just the narcs.

Anna Valerious said...

They would mock me and put me down because I wouldn`t do things their way. Do normal people act this way or is it just the narcs.

Basically insecure people do that whether they are narcissists or not. Children, who are usually insecure about their individuality, will play these games to make sure they are top dog and everyone is bowing to their ideas of what is "cool" or acceptable. There is a bullying aspect to what they are doing. Most bullies tend to be very narcissistic. So perhaps most people who do this kind of thing are narcissists. Narcissists or not it is obnoxious and I wouldn't subject myself to it.

So, what IS in a heart? said...

"She is pure evil."

Then I hop she's out of your life before things get even worse.

So, what IS in a heart? said...

Or, you can shove a pie in her face every time she misbehaves. LOL!

Sibling Survivor said...

The apple/pumpkin pie comment made me smile - we have the same sister apparently! Only with mine it was pizza... After refusing to eat any pizza that was not cheese pizza, including refusing to pick off topics or let us do "only" half the pizza cheese (she had to have a whole separate pizza cheese just for her.. otherwise there's a chance there might be some toppings on her cheese only slices), my sister had the gall to try and convince us that she NEVER liked cheese pizza, she had always hated it!

Of course, this happened because we had pizza for dinner. This was actually the only time I remember where the rest of us said we didn't care what kind, so we just got a cheese pizza so we wouldn't waste most of one to make her happy. Therefore she couldn't be happy with cheese pizza! Our parents usually swallow her lies but even they couldn't believe their ears on that one.

Also none of the rest of us were ever allowed to have the last of anything, that was reserved for her or she'd throw a tantrum. And of course she never would eat it/use it/etc, so it was either watch it be wasted or get yelled at. This includes Thanksgiving leftovers, naturally. Don't even think of touching that last piece of pie LOL

She is also notorious for (on at least two occasions) making an entire frozen lasagna (that would be dinner + lunch the following day for the entire family of 6) while everyone else was gone, eat half of one slice, and leave the rest sitting out to go bad long before we got home. She would leave it out right on the stove and (if she was feeling "kind") would bring her plate (with the half a slice left) into the kitchen and leave it there on the counter so we could see it too. But the rest of us were wasteful and didn't clean up after ourselves. She'd have you think she did everything; some kind of Cinderella being abused by her own family.

Of course, she'll tell you that I"m just saying this because I'm jealous that (pick one or more from below:
-she's pretty and I'm ugly
-she's popular and everyone hates me
-she's Christian and I'm going to hell

And/or I have the following flaws (pick one or more):
-I think I'm perfect
-I am selfish
-I am unlovable
-I am a failure (who's working on their Masters?)
-I am a lazy, worthless, leech and she works (ha!)
-I'm a liar
-I have to put her down to feel better (the irony)

And the list goes on. I'm sure she'd like to send everyone a free 2,000 page copy of her full report. (You'll pay shipping and handling plus a "small" fee, naturally).

IMO I think she's jealous that DESPITE all her attempts to destroy me I am not only capable of happiness, I'm capable of creating my own happiness. That's something she will never do because she must steal it from someone else.

That I think is what really maddens Ns about happiness... we don't need them to be happy but they need us. It exposes an area of our strength and at the same time a deficiency in their image of perfection.

Anonymous said...

I would never have that brat of a sister in my home again--not for Thanksgiving, not for Christmas, not any time.

I don't know your circumstances. Is she a younger sister that still lives at home?

Your mother doesn't seem to correct her on her rude behavior. Is this true? And why do you always have to do the hosting and cooking.

It may be too late for this year, but I would start to plan for next year now. I would plan on being some place else on Thanksgiving. If necessary go out for dinner. You could still cook a turkey with all the trimmings for Friday or something like that. If this leaves your mother out in the cold, well she could have done something about her daughter's horrible behavior.

To invite that sister into your home to spoil everyone's good time and festive fun is just setting yourself up to be kicked again.

Leave her out in the cold and she complains, just tell her, "Oh, I didn't think you would mind. You hate my cooking anyway so now you can go some place better."

So, what IS in a heart? said...

All of what she's saying is probably pure projection or a "switcharoo" thing. Let me guess, she cries about you not wanting much to do with her.

Thankfully, people like her are often too cowardly/lazy to do much more than complain.

Anonymous said...

I plan to spend a little time with NM this year. Just HOW little depends on her. I'm already dead from the waist up for the most part. My stomach, heart, & mind are only reserved for those things that make me laugh/love/think on a positive note as much as possible. Evil in the world? You bet. Having two good legs to walk away from it when it starts on me is getting easier and easier. So much has been written that comes from the hidden vaults of my life. Things I had no idea that others have experienced until I found this site. Glad I can smile and have a good life knowing that I'm not completely selfish, mean, ungrateful,cruel, a user that was beat into my head for many years. Still pops up when the situation warrants, but my shield is up now. This site is a great rest stop. Happy Thanksgiving to all!

Kathleen said...

I thimk my Ns must be nicer than the Ns everyone else has. My SIL actually DID contribute for one visit.
After my DH was diagnosed with cancer he told them to EITHER not come now OR come now and stay at a hotel -- do not stay at our house while our children were still in school.
Fat chance.
They came, said they couldn't afford a hotel (but paid for all their children's hotel bills when DH did die).
They stayed in our home, pushed the kids out of their beds.

But SIL did contribute! She came in with a styrofoam cooler. Why? According to her "Oh, I brought this so you didn't have to make room in your fridge for my wine."

That's her definition of kindness.

- Kathleen

Trixie said...

"Covetous" - OH YES! Funnily enough, my N mother and seriously malignant N sister often claim others are jealous of *them* (and believe me, there is nothing there to be jealous of). Projection, anyone? ;-) N sister is particularly vile. She will do just about anything to ruin any good thing you have, be it material things, relationships with others, etc. Whatever she herself has is never enough - it has to be miles better than what her targets have or she must destroy. She can never be happy for anyone else. I am NC with both of them now, and that was seriously one of the best things I ever did for myself! I highly recommend it to anyone enduring N abuse.

I have been lurking awhile on your blog. I find myself nodding along all the time, and outright cheering much of what you say. It's so refreshing to find others who recognize and understand the insidious poison some people can be.

To anyone wavering over an N, please contemplate: Life really is too short to let these miserable trolls ruin one more minute of it. Every moment you allow them to rob you of any good thing is a moment you can never get back. You own those moments. YOU CHOOSE.

Wishing you all strength, and a wonderful N-free holiday with all the good things a holiday should be!

Anonymous said...

Hey Anna,
I've gone back and read some of the older stuff and wanted to ask you something. You said in one article that you honor your parents by not making it a public deal. I think I failed then. This has been a rough year and I told friends and even my MIL about some things that happened.One friend said they had no idea this was happening ( childhood stuff). I've really regretted saying anything at all.I'm the one who posted about the keyboard doesn't say "Enough already!" Now when I see these people I say next to nothing on the subject except to answer, "Oh, about the same." when asked how NM is doing. Was I wrong to reveal this to them? How can I rectify this?

Anna Valerious said...

Revealing the actual names of my parents (and sister) on this blog to the general public would be completely gratuitous and vengeful on my part. That was what I was talking about when I said I was protecting my parents identity as a way to not dishonor them. That being said, I don't think it is wrong to talk about my problems with my parents to a few, select and close friends who are in a position to know I'm telling the truth. Like you, though, I haven't gone on and on with it. I don't belabor the subject. My parents are quite irrelevant to my life so the subject doesn't come up even with my close friends about 99% of the time.

Exception: my dear cousin and her family who live down the street from me. She and her family have their own horror stories relating to my family. Of all the people on the planet my cousin and her family know intimately what I've dealt with where it concerns my parents and sister. Much of my experiences they've also personally witnessed. The subject of my parents comes up with some frequency because of our close connections to each other and similar experiences and history and memories. But because we all have a great sense of humor when the subject of my parents come up with it usually a moment of hilarity. We are all so damn grateful to be out from under my parents cruel tyranny that there is a tangible sense of exhilaration for our freedom and an appreciation for our clarity now on what we were up against. I don't feel in the least bit badly for these moments. My parents have a "bad name" with all of us. A name they earned one ugly incident after another. My parents dishonored themselves directly to my cousin and family. T'aint nothing I can do about that and not my fault!

Relax. Carry on. I think it is good that you don't bend these people's ears every chance you get to 'diss' your parents. I think you handle it maturely. We all need someone to talk to when we start coming to grips with the evil of the narcissists. If you had friends for that then you were blessed. It is good to not force friends to endure endless horror stories, but talking some about it is inevitable. Real friends are people who care about you. Something as big as having had a malignant narcissist (or two) for parents is probably in the need-to-know category for close friendships.

Anonymous said...

Well, part of my thanksgiving is that all this information is now available to people via the internet and blogs like yours..... It was'nt so long ago that people were suffering from narcissistic abuse and had no idea what the dickens was happening to them! Thank god for the internet and all the good you and others like you are doing to help people!

Happy Thanksgiving to you all ... and remember to say thanks for all of the little and big things that help us all along the way!

greendaze44\Angela said...

I have gone NC with my Nfather, but still have to deal with my soon-to-be-ex Nhusband b\c we have a 10 yr old daughter together that we are fighting for custody over. Right now, we each have her for a week, alternating every week. What I have done to deal with my Nhusband is I remain calm whatever the situation. He tries to bait me and push my buttons, but I will not give him that satisfaction. He does not get to upset me anymore. If he's not happy with something, too bad.
I made a schedule for the holidays of when we would each have our daughter. I gave it to him at least 3 weeks ago now. I asked him to approve it, so we could made sure we did not have any questions about when she was to be where and so she would have a schedule to look at and would feel better about knowing. He has yet to approve it. I emailed it and gave him a paper copy. He says work has been really crazy and hasn't had the time to look at it on email. Then says the mouse on his computer at home broke. He didn't make a reference to the paper cope I made him. I didn't either, I'm still working on calling him on things.
I had to be around him last weekend, to get my remaining things from "our" house. Being around him for a couple hours was enough of a refresher for me of the craziness he tries to make me feel. He tried baiting me several times, but I remained calm and just kept what I was doing. If I wanted something, he wanted it, if I didn't care, then I could have it. We have a fishing boat that my Nfather gave me and I want it. My Nhusband has a camping stove, I said I wanted it, he said, no way, my father gave that to me. So it's ok for him to have something his father gave him, but not me, what my father gave me.
When we were in the linen closet, I said I could use a blanket cuz I don't have a good one. He said nothing. I took nothing. Yesterday he called and said he would send me a blanket next time he saw me. Like he's doing me some BIG freakin' favor. My Nhusband doesn't pay child support b\c he says I can't manage money. He makes 3 times what I make and is always "broke". Who can't manage money????!!! I will be so glad when this divorce is over and he has to follow the paperwork that is in black and white and can't hold this all over my head. I am trying to learn what I need to learn and be at peace with my life and move on.
Just typing about this stuff makes me feel exhausted. I pray about it each day:
God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, The courage to change the things I can, And the wisdom to know the difference. Most of you will recognize that as the AA Serenity Prayer, but it is oh so true when dealing with N's too. Since I left him over a year ago, my self esteem has grown by leaps and bounds. I amaze even myself. I had felt like a dried up bone when I left him. I had been used and left for, I don't know what, but I had no feelings left.
My family has been split apart by a few N's on both sides of my family, but I am creating a new holiday this year. I'm going to my sister's house and enjoy our time together. Home and Holidays, is where people love you. I'm actually excited about the holidays this year.

toni said...

Sibling Survivor got it right with they need us but we don't need them. And they hate that. They hate it if we don't need constant validation as they do. My Nsister is appearance obsessed and truly doesn't understand how anyone can not be. She asks "how can you not care?" as I am not looks obsessed. Answering that there are more important things just gets a blank stare. Her problem with that is that it confirms that I am not jealous of her. Of course denial will set in and next time it will all happen again, still the confusion and disbelief that I should not want to emulate her or Nmother. I had a former N friend who was peeved if I was happy for her as she wanted me to be jealous and upset at her successes. Oh, and I'm supposed to want their skanky boyfriends - no thanks. They want everyone to be as unhappy and insecure as they.

Sorry to disappoint ya, N's, if I were to covet anything or envy anyone you would be last on the list. :)

So, what IS in a heart? said...

"f I wanted something, he wanted it, if I didn't care, then I could have it."

And that's just it. Some people ended up getting everything they wanted from Ns by simply feigning indifference or using reverse psychology(claim that they don't want anything or say, "I wouldn't mind having/not having it". Obviously, it's not foolproof, but it can work like a charm on Ns.

Anonymous said...

So, what IS in a heart? said...

> And that's just it. Some people ended up getting everything they wanted from Ns by simply feigning indifference or using reverse psychology <

Doesn't work with a martyr N who uses gifts to induce a constant sense of shame and guilt and even as a general manipulational tool.

It was so bad that from the age of nine or ten I flat-out refused birthday presents and even avoided celebrating my birthday altogether.

First as a logical conclusion (Just save the money. No waste, no guilt. Everyone wins.), but quickly as a way to minimize manipulation from my NParents.

I could not prevent getting presents, such as underwear or a bike, but I needed those anyway. Even for a N-martyr it is quite hard to instill guilt over basic needs into an intelligent child who is in favour of adoption.

Thirty years later I still have some trouble giving or receiving presents (What do they want? Do I come across as a manipulator?), but it has all but faded away.

Anonymous said...

Wow Anon 3:54
Just had a flashback. While visiting, my father took me and sibling to get some things for school. I remember standing in the checkout line and all of a sudden having this horrible panicked feeling of shame. I didn't want him to buy me anything! I remember looking around and then tugging at him saying that I didn't really need the xyz. I don't remember if he heard me or not. I was so proud of the items afterwards. But for a split second before they were rang up this came on me. For the record, father wasn't living with us. Anybody got any thoughts on this???

Anonymous said...

Not trying to be too rude, but to me your Thanksgiving sounds like a harvest festival with all the fun surgically removed (Baked carrots? No beer?)

In this here civilisation[TM] we have Sinterklaas on December 5th/6th, an evening for small and grown-up children alike to eat candy, give and receive small presents and heckling poems, sing tradional songs, etcetera.

Basically a great deal of family fun on the cheap, exactly how we Dutch pennypinchers like it. It is also sheer paradise for narcs. The induced guilt! The tantrums! The putdowns! Oh yes.

To my utter horror some of my siblings have decided to continue the noble narc family tradition with me as their main target, just as in the (g)olden times.

It is my duty to show up at sibling reunions at my time and considerable travel expense (wasting a whole day and EUR 30-50 ~ $ 50-80) to Be Barely Tolerated and acting as an approving audience to be shown what a perfect parents and generally succesful people they are (But I can see right through).

But heaven help me if I amuse myself too much or --worse!-- let them know that somehow I'm not an unhappy, abject failure in real life after all!

Out comes the resentful Silent Treatment that you, gentle readers, probably know all too well.

So this year I decided to forfeit this great opportunity to be N-supply and responded that I have something else planned, which I will.

My N-brother who is organizing it this year asked what that could possibly be.

My Sinterklaas present for him is this wonderment.

My Sinterklaas present from you, Anna V. and the contributors, is knowing how to deal with the knowledge of having had two N parents and having two N siblings and a gaggle of enablers.

Thank you. Thank you from the bottom of my heart.

Anonymous said...

Rock on, Dutch anon! haha!

You have yourself a wonderful holiday season, doing exactly what you wish to enjoy. Great idea to leave your plans as some alluring mystery to be solved.

I can just visualize the Ns at the gathering, moaning, groaning, and totally perplexed with your "untraditional AWOL status"..haha!

My holidays will be spent with my 2felines, good books, my own good food, and good movies on dvd.

Why, you ask, will I be happily, contentedly, without human company this year? Because my dys family is 2000 miles away as I fled the state a year ago for a much lovelier one!

I know, without a doubt, that you folks who read Annas fantabulous blog can so TOTALLY comprehend my superb joy at being left the damn alone!..haha.

Happy, lovely/loving/loved Thanksgiving to each and every one of you gorgeous souls! :)

Peace..Love..Joy
God bless you

~Kimberley

Anonymous said...

It was at Thanksgiving several years ago that I banned SIL and her son from our house once and for all.

This was after her son, age seven, sprayed mashed potatoes out of his mouth on the dinner guests. His mother and GPs thought it was "cute". He got to wait in the back yard for the meal to end. I told them all to leave.

Those barnyard animals are the same people who brought the child to visit at our house, whereupon he promptly threw up, three visits in a row, in the exact same spot on our carpet. They informed my H that he should "let HER (me) clean it up". How benevolent.

Anna Valerious said...

Happy Thanksgiving to all of you. Thank you for your comments on this post. They are witness to your hard-earned experience with Ns and also a testament from many of you of the courageous departure from norms by walking away from the torture of holidays with Ns.

Life is so terribly short. It is such a pity to have to waste one more holiday with them! They don't deserve holidays as guaranteed access to you and your tender souls for use and abuse. No law in heaven or earth preserves these days for the narcissists as harvest times for narcissistic supply and opportunities to stick their knives in you. I choose to spend holidays with those who only feast on turkey and not on me! Only carnivores not cannibals!

All the best to each of you.

Anonymous said...

Have a wonderful holiday Anna!

Many thanks for your great work here.

Barbara C said...

It took many years of therapy for me to grasp that my N-mother was jealous of me. From the moment I was born. I don't know what she was jealous OF and never really understood but her hatred of me was all consuming.

she'll scream that I did it on purpose

EVERY SINGLE DAY I was with her or on the phone to her, my late NMom never lost an opportunity to say "I know you LIVE YOUR WHOLE LIFE just to HURT ME!" WTF? how sick...

In therapy I also realized every N I was ever in a relationship with (about 5 in all) and the one I married was also envious of me. Just ridiculous but of course I am not an N. However, I have given up trying to figure out WHAT they are envious of!

These people are driven by hateful motives. THANKSgiving isn't in their vocabulary.

Great post as always!

Anonymous said...

"If I wanted something, then he wanted it..."

Reminds me of my heartwarming tale of my MN ex. During our divorce, (which he never saw coming, he never thought I'd do it) he was asking how we'd split up the furniture. I reasoned that we each get a couch or loveseat, each get an end table...basically split it down the middle. Except for furniture that my parents gave me.

He said that I could have all of it, except for the computer and desk. He said it would comfort our 2 youngest children to have all the same furniture, even though in a different house.

I thought "Wow, how thoughtful"

WRONG

He later on tells my mom and sis that I WANTED EVERYTHING!!! They know that he is full of crap.

Three years later, his mom said he told all them (my in-laws) the same thing! No wonder his sisters (whom I loved) hate me now. I can only imagine the horrible crap he told them. His mom believes me because she said his dad (deceased, I never knew him) was just like him. Therefore, I know he refuses to talk to his mom because she "has his number" so to speak. But he has his sisters fooled...even though he has since then been in federal prison for the past 2 years. Honestly, does he sound like someone you can take at his word? Wake up sisters. I know quite a lot of other lies he told them that could fill pages, his mom told me them.

Unfortunately, he got out this past summer...thanks for asking!!!

Sorry, I digress...that rat bastard set me up by letting me have all the furniture.

My fondest wish is that he screws up again and goes back to prison. It was a great two years that went by tooooo quick!

Stay strong everyone and leave the trash out of your life(hopefully in prison instead)

God bless us, everyone!

C.

Anonymous said...

Anna V. Thank you so much for this chance for all of us to VENT and share advice with others. It is great to compare notes and figure out what They are up to.

Keep your posts coming, Anna V.

We know that we are not alone or crazy.

God Bless!!
C.