Friday, January 10, 2020

Book Recommendation

Being an Audible member, a book was recommended to me based on other books I've listened to over the years.  True crime is one of the genres I dip into now and again.  I ignored the recommendation for a few weeks because I didn't know if I wanted to put my toe in that pool again.  The pool of stench that describes Evil Motherhood.  I finally did buy the book, and I could barely put it down.  It is written by a True Crime master, Gregg Olsen.  The title is:  If You Tell: A True Story of Murder, Family Secrets, and the Unbreakable Bond of Sisterhood.

If you were raised by an abusive and malignantly narcissistic mother, you may find this book to be triggering.  Proceed with caution.  I freely admit I lived through nothing compared to the daughters of this witch, Michelle Knotek.  What I can also say is that I recognized all of it.  The principles are all the same.  The scale is where the stories differ from mine and maybe yours. 

Knotek was evil. This was evident from a very early age.  Her first victims were her family of origin.  She grew up and moved onto making her own family.  She became a master at looking like she was a loving caregiver.  She lured people into her life who were already vulnerable emotionally and financially.  She killed at least three people who came to live with her while her children were growing up.  She used the cloak of a caregiver to cover her malevolence.  Flattery, generosity, benevolence were her tools to get people close.  Gas-lighting, extreme physical deprivation, divide-and-conquer, physical torture, mental torment, unpredictability, and drugging were her tools of control.  Using others to carry out her will in order to implicate them in her crimes was also her consistent MO.  All these things were familiar to me.  The only difference is the scale.  Michelle was willing to go far further than many evil mothers do, but the tool box is identical.

I found this story reaffirming in a strange way.  It allows me to continue to condemn my mother's tactics in my heart.  I'm in limited contact with my mother and father now.  My mother is into at least moderate dementia.  My father is near death.  My mother is always in history revision mode.  She recreates events to make herself a hero.  It disgusts me.  I rarely interact with her.  Happily, she is my sister's problem.  When dad dies, my sister will inherit mom.  She is well positioned to do this because she has her own adult assisted living home and sister doesn't live on site.  She can keep a distance while taking care of mother dearest.  When my dad dies, which could literally be any day now, I will hold back very little when dealing with mom.  When I rarely talk to her, dad is usually on the phone too which has helped keep Mom in check.  When dad is gone, that check will be gone for her.  And for me, too.  Her lack of restraint will be met with mine.

My mother has zero power in my life.  She has no hold over me.  She knows it, and therefore finds me uninteresting.  It's all good.  I feel badly for my dad, but I also think he's reaping what he sowed.  My mother and father have no contact with my daughter.  My daughter has maintained her distance with my full support.  I allowed limited contact with me after my daughter was well on her own.  That was in 2013.  I have seen my mother twice since then.  My dad thrice.  Before he became too ill to travel, he visited me for a few days without mom in tow.  It was the first and only time in my adult life when I could have a long conversation with my dad without my mother there to interfere.  It was good.  I talked openly about the rift between me, him and my mom.  He listened kindly and well.  He earned some respect from me because of it.

The book of my parents is closing.  First it will be dad.  He is in the final stages of COPD due to those many years of smoking.  Mom is totally dependent on him emotionally and every other way.  She will transfer that dependence to my sister when he goes.  My sister understands that I can't be involved in taking care of Mom when the time comes.  If she resents me for it, I can't tell.  I wouldn't care if she did.

I will now speak of my sister.  She has changed dramatically.  She had long been highly narcissistic as I have described somewhat on my blog, but I can see huge shift in her whole life and thinking processes.  It's been a stunning thing, and a testament to God's power to change a life.  She has been consistent for years now.  The high drama is gone.  She is polite and considerate toward me.  She came for a week long visit a few years ago.  We talked for days on end.  We explored the many ways Mom lied to us about each other.  My sister admitted things she did to me.  She apologized sincerely and without equivocation.  I don't speak to her often, but when we do connect it feels right.  We are friends for the first time ever in our lives.  She doesn't play the victim card, she doesn't excuse her behavior by blaming how mom raised her.  It's hard to keep up this level of change for almost seven years.  She makes no demands on me.  I think she's finally grown up.  I contrast the huge changes in my sister with my mother who hasn't changed a wit.  My mother acts like she's a saint, but sister and I are not fooled.  Mother lacks the mental agility to manipulate with any efficiency.  She is rendered harmless by the deterioration of her brain, but she is still odious. 

Like the Knotek sisters, I hate my mother, yet she was my mother and part of me loves her.  It is a hard dichotomy to explain, but those of us with these kind of mothers understand perfectly.  

Thursday, December 12, 2019

Conspiracy theory about little ol' me

Yesterday I was contacted through Facebook by my friend, Sister Renee.  She wanted me to know that some concerned citizen out there thinks I've been disappeared.  Here is the All Points Bulletin sent out for Anna Valerious:

"Anna Valerious of Narcissists Suck on Blogger, excellent blog we have promoted for years. We have been waiting on the "Internet Crimes Unit" for years now, so this is publicly posted out of concern. The "Internet Crime Unit" hasn't done us one bit of discernible good. On the contrary, our pages are hijacked, redirected, hacked up, etc. So, maybe someone is aware of some effective law enforcement somewhere because we sure as hell haven't been able to find any here. - KC3"

Then they posted a nicely made banner with this text at the bottom"

"Did those who call good evil and evil good, force this excellent blog master we (DoNM SoNM) have all learned so much from, into revealing her identity on her blog, her pen name for the perpetrators she so eloquently and comprehensibly exposed on her blog to pursue liability. "

I would post the banner in this post, but it messes up my formatting.  

Okay, here is the list of concerns as I read it:  
1)  My blog has been possibly hijacked, redirected or hacked up.
2)  My identity has been revealed by force...
3)  For the purpose of litigation by those I have blogged about.  

First of all, my sincere thanks for the compliments on my blog.  I recognize that the concern for my well being is kindly meant.  My post here today is my sincere effort to allay all these concerns.  I'm still alive and well.  No one in my family has ever found my blog.  No one has ever tried to sue me.  My blog is still in my full control and hasn't been hijacked.  No one who doesn't have control of the blog can post on it.  So, concerned citizens, please know that you need have no worry on my account.  

I blogged intensively for a little over three years.  I more or less retired the blog in 2009.  I posted a number of times after I stopped blogging with any regularity.  My life has changed dramatically in the last six years.  Among those changes I started working and am very busy.  My family of origin isn't causing any problems for me.  I'm still happily married to my loving husband.  I have three cats and my daughter has been grown and living on her own for a number of years now.  She lives nearby, and we see her often.  I don't dwell on the subject of narcissism because I have no narcissists in my life!  All were served eviction notices and peace reigns.  

This blog is still moderated by ME.  Not nearly as many comments come through, but any that do must still be approved by me.  If someone had asked about me in a comment, I could have answered their concerns via the blog long ago since I do see all comments.  Keep that in mind for the future.  

Wishing everyone a happy narcissist-free life!  

Tuesday, August 09, 2016

Stop the Presses. I've Gotten it all Wrong! Or, Blogger is Schooled by a Narcissist.

The only reason this is being posted on the front page of the blog is because my response is too lengthy for the comment section because I reply inline with the original comment. 

The comment I am responding to was posted to this blog:  The Savior Complex.  Apparently, my blog is making life hard for the narcissists.  My response is my apology for this fact.  Or maybe not. 

Here we go.  Naturally, I could have gone into much more detail in my response, but I ain't got time for dat. 

Hello. As someone with NPD, I find this inherently harmful, and here is why.

Hello.  As someone with much experience at the receiving end of NPD I find your comments inherently self-serving and obtuse.

People with NPD are not inherently abusive. We have the tendencies to be so, yes, but that does not mean that we are by default. Anyone, personality disorder or not, Cluster A, B, or C, can be abusive.

That all depends on your definition of abuse.  And judging by your entire missive here, I’d say you are quick to minimize others pain and quicker to point out your own.  So you’re hardly a good judge on this point.  Clusterfuck A, B or matters not.  Arbitrary psychobabble labels don't define people.  Their behavior toward others does. 

Narcissists do need attention, yes. It makes us feel good about ourself, and if we don't get it, we spiral into depression. That is called narcissistic injury, the same that happens without insults.

Everyone needs attention.  The problem with malignant narcissists is that they need ALL the attention.  This means they want the attention that should rightly go to someone else which is equivalent to theft.  Stealing attention hurts others.  Sometimes it is extremely destructive to others.

It is not exactly difficult to praise a narcissist on their appearance, work, art, etc.

My point wasn’t that it was difficult.  My point is that it is impossible to ever give enough.  With narcissists it is all going one way…towards themselves.  Otherwise they think they’re being abused.

If a narcissist is abusive, it is not the NPD causing it. It's the fact they are an abuser. People with NPD don't typically ask for help, no, but over years of dealing with it, we learn to cope in ways that don't push others away or hurt them. Actually, most of us don't want others to find out we have NPD, so we either cope with it extremely well or hide it in very unhealthy ways. Do you know why? Because of articles like this. BLOGS like this. Because we can't even try finding answers as to how we can cope without finding things about how we are burdens and how OTHERS can cope with us and eventually get away from us.

I would love to meet such a nice narcissist as you.  To claim that blogs like mine are the problem for people like you, well, so be it.  It is about time for the narcissists to have to deal with our problems with them. Oh, and if you don't act like a selfish fuckwit all the time then it is unlikely that people will find out you're a narcissist.  I'm sorry you have to hide your evil tendencies in order to not be discovered to have NPD, it must be a real burden for you.

Do you know how you keep yourself from getting stuck in an abusive relationship with a narcissist? Talk. To. Us. Don't just say we're too demanding and you can't keep up, ask us about compromises. What kind of narcissistic supply do we like best? Would a few compliments on our outfit get us through the day? It's about communication, the same as any relationship.

Oh. My. God.  You don’t have a clue.

Do you know how people end up with personality disorders like NPD? Usually abuse. And those with personality disorders are statistically more likely to repeatedly end up in abusive situations. The fact you'd have your readers believe that we're all the abusive ones is disgusting.

I don’t claim all narcissists are abusers, but a case for that could be made.  If someone is on my blog it is because they have suffered long under the tyranny of a narcissist who is far less wonderful than you are.  I didn’t shape their beliefs on this … their abusive narcissist did.  And bringing out the old saw about abuse causing NPD is lame and unscientific.  Just t'aint true.  I won't bore you with the facts.

We are not bad people because we have lowered empathy. Just because we can't understand how one is feeling does not mean we can't feel concern and express compassion, it just means we may not be able to help as eloquently as someone with higher empathy levels.

The person with lowered empathy is very unlikely to know how much they hurt others.  Oh, and saying the right words is not all that empathy may require. Pretty shallow definition of empathy if you think it is just being eloquent or feeling something.

Don't say you didn't mean people who are simply egotistical. The use of the word narcissist says this was aimed at US, and honestly, your willingness to throw us under the bus speaks volumes about how you would treat someone who acted like us. Either reconsider your wording, or work on your internalized hatred of people with personality disorders. You are hurting us.

Okay, I won’t say that I was only talking about egotistical people.  I wasn’t.  In fact, I am quite able to draw a line of distinction between people who are egotistical and those who are narcissists.  They are not necessarily one and the same; in fact, they very often are not the same thing.  But I cover that in other areas of my blog.  In fact, when people assume that egotists are narcissists I instantly know they don’t know a narcissist from a hole in the ground.  I was intentionally aiming at narcissists.  My recommendations on how to deal with narcissists are humane for everyone.  No violence like throwing under buses is ever recommended.  I have no internalized hatred for people with personality disorders.  I hate the under handed, deceitful and nasty practices some people employ to the detriment of others.  If telling people to walk away from an abusive narcissist is hurting people with PD’s, well, so be it.  Sometimes nasty people won’t learn until they find themselves alone because they are nasty.  I know more than one PD person who has bought a clue because they ended up with nothing because of their bad behavior.  Some people never learn except the hard way.

People are not victims of narcissism. They are victims of abuse. The only victims of NPD are the sufferers.

People are victims of abusive narcissists. The sufferers are their victims.  That word “abusive” in my first sentence of this paragraph is an adjective that describes the kind of narcissists I write about.  Which means I’m not writing about every single narcissist out there.  Necessarily.   If you don’t abuse others, then I wasn’t writing about you.  But I suppose your narcissism is showing since you think it is all about you.  On the other hand, maybe it IS all about you.

This is all the attention from me that you’re going to get.  Any further comments of yours will be deleted.  You have amply notified all readers of this blog that you think I’m all wrong.  I have kindly posted your comment on my front page so people can come to their own conclusions.  I’m sure you’ve persuaded everyone that I’m all wrong and you’re a victim of bloggers like me.  I’m guessing the attention I’ve given you isn’t the right kind or enough.  Save your protests cuz I don’t give a fuck.  Have a nice day.

Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Celebrate Life in the New Year

It's New Year's Eve and I was thinking about this blog while having a quiet moment to ponder life.  I thought of those of you who've inquired as to why I stopped blogging.  When I signed off I did so because I felt I'd said all I had to say on the subject.  I still feel that way.  My philosophy has always been to shut up and sit down if I didn't have anything to say that is worth saying.  I ran to the end of my knowledge and experience on the subject and decided to not belabor my points.

Is the subject of narcissism, malignant narcissism specifically, actually finite?  I can say a definitive yes to answer my own question. 


Here is the simple answer: evil is finite. 

Think about it. 

Evil is the antithesis to creative power.  It is in opposition to life, to love.  It destroys.  It doesn't build up.  It implodes and extinguishes itself when it can no longer survive parasitically on life, on truth.  When reality can no longer be denied then evil perishes in the flames of its own lies. 

So as we enter a new year I hope each of you will come to the conclusion that you've given enough of your life to the evil, self-serving ends of the malignant narcissist.  If you've educated yourself on Evil Personality Disorder, don't dwell there.  Let the finiteness of their evil fizzle away from lack of attention on your part.  Celebrate life.  We celebrate life by living it.  We can only be said to be living life if we are living in reality.  Reality and truth are synonymous.  Yes, sometimes reality sucks, but to live in lies never ends well.  Choose truth over lies even when truth is painful.  Because truth is eternal.  Lies are finite.

None of what I'm saying is exhorting you to live for yourself.  That, too, is finite.  Think carefully on this:  the narcissist lives for themselves.  It is their all-consuming care for only themselves that destroys their relationships, their own lives, their minds.  To live fully is to live in love.  And love lives for others.  Look outward and serve (but don't serve evil!)  Look upward and give thanks. 

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Suicide Threats and the Narcissist

I received a comment on this post in the last 24 hours that actually provoked me to write.  And I wrote with enough substance that I decided to put it on the front page so that all may read it.  Here is the comment:

I agree with a lot of what is said on here. Regarding the comments about being scared of death meaning the person won't commit suicide... I just want to share that one of my family members may have been narcissistic, and threatened suicide often as a manipulation tactic. We thought that she would not do it but she did. Being scared of death might be a narcissistic trait, and they might threaten suicide as a manipulation, but I'm just sharing that that doesn't mean a person won't do it. I think it might be helpful to remember that narcissism is a disorder... so while it is angering keep some perspective about the person still being a person you don't want to die from suicide.

I will comment on the final point first: perspective is exactly what I present on this blog.  The perspective is this:  narcissists are their own creation.  Their "disorder" isn't something that just accidentally happened without their contribution.  They create their own "disorder" and then they inflict it on everyone around them.  When narcissists threaten suicide this perspective still applies.

It is well established that most people who serially threaten suicide aren't very serious about actually doing it.  The serious ones will almost always do it without giving even a hint of their intentions.  Or they will do just that: hint without an overt threat being made.  Many times those hints aren't recognized by others for what they were until it is too late. 

While suicide is always a tragic end to any life we shouldn't pretend that we can actually stop someone who is serious about doing it. That doesn't mean we shouldn't try to intervene, it simply means we shouldn't blame ourselves if they successfully complete the act. I don't know of any caring family member, friend or even co-worker who wouldn't try to stop someone who has threatened to kill themselves.  People will go to great lengths to help an apparently suicidal person.  This is the very reason that narcissists love to use this threat to get attention whenever they want it.  If there was an ongoing problem of people ignoring suicide threats then do you think that narcissists would use those threats to get attention?  Obviously answer is no.  If a narcissist is frequently threatening suicide then you have all the proof you need that the threats are garnering them much attention.  If they move on from threats to actually doing it then the blame rests squarely on them.

If the suicidal person doesn't accept the help when they make threats to kill themselves then I think it highly irresponsible to blame the people around them for not doing enough to stop them.  I'm not saying that this commenter is blaming people for this, but it can be inferred that they think the way this topic has been discussed on this post would lead people to not do enough to stop the suicidal person.  I'm just pointing out what I think is obvious...the truly suicidal person will carry through no matter what people may do to try to stop them.  Additionally, individuals who frequently make these threats without any real attempts should also accept the blame when people stop believing them.

The problem presented in the post (and the comments) isn't that people don't or won't do enough to help suicidal individuals.  The problem is how there are crassly manipulative people who will use suicidal threats to get what they want.  In the end, the narcissist is always after all the attention in the room.  All I was trying to get across is that there is a distinct possibility that all those suicidal threats are actually being used to get compliant behavior from us.  Recognition of that possibility isn't going to stop people from trying to help someone who threatens suicide with regularity.  I think that people deserve to know they are being manipulated when these threats are ongoing.  Being aware of this (not slight) possibility will allow people to do their own assessments of what is happening and decide when they will stop letting these threats rule their own lives.  

That the narcissistic person in this commenter's life seems to have defied this logic above doesn't negate what I've said.  There are exceptions to every rule.  There is also a possibility that the suicide wasn't supposed to work. It is well known that there are people who attempt suicide but the method and timing often reveal that the person was hoping someone would intervene.  It is usually called a "cry for help" and not seen as a total commitment to offing themselves.  These individuals do get help.  Whether they will avail themselves of it is another matter.

Suicide is recognized by the psych community as very often being a hostile act toward others.  It can be used to stick a shiv between the ribs of family and friends that can never be removed.  That is a lot of power to wield.  To pretend that suicidal people don't factor that in is to be stupidly naive.  So putting more potential blame on those who've had a family member or friend kill themselves is cruelty.  They already shoulder far too much blame.  Blame that was foisted on them by the act of suicide itself. 

Here's another thought for all to chew on:  suicide is homicidal behavior inflicted upon oneself.  (I'm sure I've pointed that out before somewhere on this blog.) Homicidal behavior is just a fancy phrase for murder.  Murder is in the heart of the suicidal person.  That murderous intent has all too often spilled over into murdering other humans for us to safely ignore this reality.  This is not something people are willing to point out very often, but if you have someone in your life who is suicidal, you also are dealing with a person who could very possibly justify killing others.  It must be said.  To say it another way, a suicidal person is not just a danger to themselves; they may easily also be a danger to those around them.  People deserve to know that fact and adjust their lives accordingly.  Frankly, I would advise anyone to try to help an openly suicidal person, but when it becomes apparent that help is not being accepted then it is best to be on guard.  Put some distance between yourself and that person.  But that is my opinion.  If you choose to risk continued close association that is your choice.  No one is going to stop you.

No one here wants anyone to commit suicide.  Not even the narcissist. Not even when they make us angry. What I have provided here is plenty of perspective.  It is perspective that factors in multiple realities...not just one.  People are smart enough to figure this out without being talked down to.  The problem out there isn't that people are dehumanizing narcissists and hoping they will follow through on their death threats against their own person.  The ongoing problem is that narcissists dehumanize us.  And then abuse us accordingly.  To point this and other realities out about narcissists doesn't dehumanize them.  It exposes them.  Narcissists are, without exception, predatory.  I have expended much effort to help people stop being prey.  Our right to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness isn't suspended by hungry narcissists even when they act like they want to kill themselves. 

Please read all the above with the realization the the blog author here fully understands that people who aren't narcissists may threaten suicide.  They may actually carry it out.  I'm not saying all people who threaten suicide are narcissists.  Please don't construe anything I've said to be implicating that.  But if you know you're dealing with a narcissist then all the above must be considered.

Also, I want to add that the person whose comment I responded to in this post deserves to know this all applies to her/him too.  I hope this person isn't blaming themselves for the suicide of their family member.  That is a heavy burden to carry.  Please don't carry it.  I want to make sure that no one carries that burden unnecessarily.  That is what this response is about.