I loosely follow my stats. If I see a bunch of hits coming from one site then I'll follow the link to see what the chatter is. In no less than four different forums in the last month the subject of whether or not the narcissist can be saved has been going on. Whenever this subject comes up rather a lot of heat is generated on both sides. Both sides have very personal reasons for fighting for their view for reasons you can all likely understand. It is usually a Christian who is contending for the view of the narcissist that requires an eternal optimism for their salvation and which usually is the means of justifying, yea, demanding, that people never give up on them. When this subject comes up someone puts up a link to my site as support for the Narcissist Is Doomed to Hell view point.
I think I will, for the sake of future discussions along this line, clarify my position. I think my position is already clear but I'll make it more clear just because the emotionality of this subject seems to disengage some people's logic centers. I speak of those of the Never Give Up, Never Surrender ilk.
Here is what I haven't said. I haven't said that God can't save the narcissist. In fact, I've said the opposite. I have said that God can save the narcissist but with the addendum that He doesn't need YOU to do it! We must have an expiration date on our patience with evil doers.
A year ago I dealt at length with one of the apostle Paul's very clear commands concerning what we should do about those who practice evil in the church family (and by extension, our own families) in the post titled "From Such Turn Away". I don't believe that "love thy neighbor" negates the force of Paul's command. You can't take one text to annul another text and properly exegete the Bible. Context is everything. Too often people make a passage say something it isn't by not putting it into context. Apparent contradictions can be explained when one takes the effort to understand the big picture. I want to present a bigger picture on the Biblical view of what God's people are expected to do about evil in their midst by adding a few more texts into the mix.
Whether one reads the Old Testament or the New Testament it becomes clear rather quickly that God teaches that evil is contagious. There are so many parts of Scripture that teach this it would become very cumbersome to try to list them all. This truth is a given throughout all the Bible and is the very core understanding that is central to every Biblical command to separate from evildoers -- especially and primarily evildoers in the church and home.
It is this core truth which those Christians who insist on eternal patience with evil doers must either ignore willfully or who are just ignorant of all together. I'll say it again: evil is contagious. It is contagious because evil isn't satified to be evil all by itself. It actively works to co-opt you into its evil. And when you join them in their evil they applaud and approve of you (Romans 1:32).
You, the reader of this blog, have likely seen enough of the world and life to have your own observations to call upon to illustrate this truth. You've seen the contagion of evil infect from person to person in your own family. Or the workplace. Or perhaps you've found yourself co-opted for a time into someone else's evil deeds. The understanding that evil is contagious is understood by all good parents. Most parents will guard the associations of their children because they know that bad influences are very likely to lead children and teens into bad behaviors. Evil doers are never satisfied to be alone in their deeds. They want accomplices. To corrupt their peers is essential in order to be able to carry on their evil with a minimum of moral judgment or risk of exposure. Evil doers are not confined by truth or by morality if it stands in the way of getting what they want. So this amplifies the persuasive power of evil. Because it can and does lie to get its way; because it can create a false reality; because it can use the implements of cruelty, bribery, violence and exercise of any and all power it may possess without moral considerations -- all this increases the likelihood that evil doers will create other evil doers.
Having elaborated a bit in the paragraph above about the FACT that evil is like a virus that will infect those who remain in close contact with it I have again underlined the central reason I so energetically urge "no contact" with the malignant narcissist. To avoid picking up their traits, to avoid being used by them as a "cat's paw" to hurt others, to avoid becoming indifferent to evil and therefore more likely to be evil oneself, it is essential to separate yourself from it. For a Christian to urge the opposite is to reveal themselves to be profoundly ignorant of the Bible or, I fear, profoundly over-confident of their ability to not be co-opted by evil. A confidence the Scriptures do not urge us to have!
Another aspect of my urging "no contact" with evil doers is your responsibility to protect the most vulnerable and most innocent ones whom you are in a position to protect. This, too, is the Biblical view as the Bible holds those in positions of authority responsible for the temporal and eternal well-being of those in their care. So, even if you feel overly confident of your imperviousness to yielding to evil doers in your family or church I do not see on what basis you are confident of the unyielding nature of the vulnerable and innocent in your charge. Parents are responsible before God to protect their young from evil, church leaders for their 'flock', kings for their people, etc.
Evil doers in the family are not granted a special exemption by God! Evil doers are in the best position to harm those who are closest to them by reason of familial ties. Family ties are not any justification for evil else we condemn each new generation to endless repetititions of evil doers in the familial circle. The cycle has to be broken at some point or entire families will be destroyed. There are historical examples of this going back as far as recorded history goes. Like begets like. Evil spreads. Entire nations can be eventually consumed by unchecked evil in families.
All this means that Christians who agitate for the idea that we are not true, loving Christians if we don't emulate their own eternal patience with evil are actually only perpetuating evil rather than spreading good as they claim. Eternal patience with evil is equal with being a despiser of the good and the innocent!
Don't be cowed by the unflinching self-righteousness of those who claim to be better than you because they won't give up hope that God will save the narcissist. Recognize the false premise in their reasoning. They reason thus: if you walk away (i.e. give up on) the narcissist you have, at the same time, shown that you don't believe God can save the narcissist. Walking away says no such thing! God is not rendered powerless to save anyone just because you've had to go 'no contact' to end your exposure to their evil! Where in the Bible has God said that every person we will ever come in contact with will be saved by God through us?? It is no where even hinted at such a notion. The arrogance inherent in believing that God can only use YOU to save a particular person is quite odious when you recognize it for what it is. You are not that important. Or powerful. Get over yourself.
Some more texts to consider carefully because they enjoin us to separate from evil doers and trouble-makers.
Romans 16:17-18. Notice that those who are co-opted by the "divisive" ones are called naive. Other versions use the term "simple" or "simpletons". The Bible marks those Christians who can't discern the evil acts of their brothers in Christ to be simpletons. Remember that when one of those simpletons come to you to accuse you of being ignorant! Oh, the irony of it. Also remember that the Christian church is called a family and its structure is modelled on the family. What applies to the church family can be rightly applied to the family you were born into.
1 Corinthians 5:9-13. As in Paul's instruction to Timothy where he says "from such turn away" Paul is very specific about whom we should be shunning in his letter to the Corinthians. He says that if he told God's church to turn away from ALL evil doers then the Christian would have to leave the world. Paul says this is obviously impossible so obviously he wasn't telling Christians to avoid all the evil doers in the world. He was telling them how to deal with those in the church. This is entirely consistent with the view of the contagiousness of evil. That evil which is closest to us is the most dangerous form. Paul was much more concerned about prospering evil doers in the church than in the world at large because evil disguising itself in Christian garb is much more persuasive to other Christians than some stranger outside the circle of the church family. He concludes his admonition with this unequivocal command which is a quote from the Old Testament (Deut. 13:5), "Expel the wicked man from among you." There is no special clemency for evil doers just because they are in the family. The very opposite is true. Paul is clear that we are to judge those closest to us...not those furthest away. Those who call themselves family (church or birth) are the most accountable to us for their behavior!
The law that was handed down in the book of Deuteronomy was to govern the family of Israel. Israel was a family, a denominated church and a nation all rolled into one. We can learn much from God's commands to Israel about both church and family government. We don't see God telling His people to cut extra slack to evil doers in their families or nation. No slack cutting...cut them off is the command! Paul's quoting of this command in the New Testament shows that its instruction is in full force for the Christian.
Please note that Paul puts sexual immorality next to greed. Idolatry is just as evil as slander. A drunk is as evil as the swindler. However you may categorize evil, if you call yourself Christian I hope you won't put yourself above Paul and describe greed or slander as less evil than the other sins listed. The habit of those who've long lived with the evil narcissist have usually come to excuse greater sins than these in them. Don't minimize what the Bible calls evil and exhorts you to separate yourself from!
Psalm 26:4-5, NIV A psalm of David. "I do not sit with deceitful men nor do I consort with hypocrites; I abhor the assembly of evildoers and refuse to sit with the wicked." Which Christian is it who can claim to be better esteemed of God than David? I daresay, none. Will you show your greater righteousness by sitting with the wicked and joining in their assemblies?
Psalm 97:10, NIV "Let those who love the LORD hate evil, for he guards the lives of his faithful ones and delivers them from the hand of the wicked." Are you better than the Lord Himself? He hates evil. Do you? Notice the promise of deliverance from the hand of the wicked. What would that be but a promise of 'no contact'. A blessed relief from their persecutions.
Proverbs 2 Click on the link to read its entirety. In it Solomon explains the blessings that proceed from listening to and acquiring wisdom and understanding. "Discretion will protect you,
and understanding will guard you. Wisdom will save you from the ways of wicked men, from men whose words are perverse, who leave the straight paths to walk in dark ways, who delight in doing wrong and rejoice in the perverseness of evil, whose paths are crooked and who are devious in their ways." Wisdom and understanding are presented as the means whereby God can protect you from wicked people. Hello!!??? Can you hear me?? You can be an idiot and make it impossible for God to protect you! You were given a brain and are expected by God to use it. What does this chapter end with but this rather good news, "the wicked will be cut off from the land, and the unfaithful will be torn from it." Again, I ask, who of you is better than God who cuts off the wicked? From my view none of you are better than God Himself. Therefore, I will not listen to you who believe that the "good" Christian will never cut off the malignant narcissist. I can only see you as a coddler of the wicked not a protector of the innocent and the virtuous. Your eternal patience for the evil doer is taken by them to be a license to continue on as they are. Never cutting them off allows the evil doer to feel justified in what they are and in what they do.
It is because God loves people that He instructs them to cut off the wicked. It is not from hatred of the evil person himself. God hates evil because it destroys the evil doer and all those in the evil doer's grasp. The Bible records that God has many times executed the death penalty upon the wicked and many choose to see Him as being too harsh for doing so. Yet they would forget the many crimes of the wicked to accuse God in that way. God has killed evil doers with the express purpose of saving those who are still save-able. He states clearly that He takes no pleasure in the death of the wicked. (Ezekiel 33:11) The destruction of the wicked is elsewhere called His "strange act" (Isaiah 28:21). Be assured, cutting off the wicked is an act of justice and mercy dispensed by God to preserve those not given over to evil. Don't pretend to be better than God Himself by refusing His instructions to distance yourself from those who won't distance themselves from evil deeds. He expects you to use wisdom. Wisdom is the conduit whereby He is able to shape circumstance to protect you. Wisdom is a function of logical thought. Which means you follow your head and not your fickle little heart when confronted with having to deal with evil. Family ties are not an automatic exemption from all instruction concerning evil. Family is more accountable to us, not less, for their closeness.
I'll say it one more time before closing. Cutting off the evil narcissist is not a commentary on your believing that God can't save that person. Going no contact with the malignant narcissist doesn't mean God has gone no contact with him. Please, don't be a simpleton. God can still reach them even if you never speak another word to them. Because the Biblical instruction to the Christian is unequivocal that we must "Therefore put away from among yourselves that wicked person", don't expect God's protection if you refuse His clear command on this point. And believe me, there will come a day when the trap springs and there will be no help for you.
"Discretion will protect you, and understanding will guard you. Wisdom will save you from the ways of wicked men, from men whose words are perverse." Prov. 2:11-12
"A prudent man sees danger and takes refuge, but the simple keep going and suffer for it." Prov. 22:3
Monday, February 02, 2009
No Contact: Because Their Evil is Contagious
Posted by Anna Valerious at 3:10 PM
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And for those who are SIMPLE, you can't get any more succinct than this:
1 Cor. 15:33: "Do not be deceived. Bad company corrupts good morals." (New American Standard).
And for those who are REALLY, REALLY SIMPLE-MINDED:
"Do not be tricked by false words; evil company does damage to good behavior." (Bible in Basic English).
There is no way that my N ILs will have contact with MY children as long as I can prevent it. That's my OBLIGATION.
And to minions who call themselves "peacemakers", the Bible tells you to MYOB:
Like one who takes a dog by the ears Is he who passes by and meddles with strife not belonging to him. (NAS)
I totaly agree with what you`ve said here.It is amazing how many times I`ve heard from other self-rightous Christians that there is still hope in God saving the n.Most christians just don`t get the depth of evil with the n.They are ignorant to the truth of this even though they may claim to know scripture very well.God can save anyone but most ns choose evil over rightousness.The bible says that men love the darkness and some choose darkness over truth.I told this to a Christian that is suppose to know scripture very well and they discredited it.
Christians think that you should have contact with your n family to "be a light in the darkness." I`m still baffled by this teaching and wondering how they can justify it.It`s no were to be found.Matter of fact, Jesus said to the disciples when they were going to go preach the gospel and if no one would believe, then wipe the dust off of your feet and leave.He didn`t tell them to hang out for 20 years to see if they might convert.
I was thinking about this not to long ago.It`s something I experienced myself.When someone is starting to go no contact and just got done experiencing hell with n family for 3 years, they have to grieve that lose.Most people could give a crap what you are going through and have a pull up your boot straps mentality.Christian or not, people have a mentality that unless it`s an actual death that you don`t have a right to grieve.But what they don`t get is that it may not be someone who actually died but it is still a death.I can`t tell you how many idiots,a pastor and so-called friends who were so mean and cold towards my situation.People only have compassion for what they think is deserving.
I've actually had a Christian tell me that God didn't really MEAN the part of Luke 17:3 where it say "Rebuke the sinner, and IF he repents, then forgive him...."
When someone tells me the Bible teaches us to "turn the other cheek," I've been agreeing, but also asking "And exactly where does Jesus say "Go ye and put thy cheek where thou knowst it will be slapped"??
Kathleen, LOL, so true.
If it's a truism that God cuts off the wicked, then why do soooo many Ns seem to live interminably?
You are funny! Love your comments.
An enabling family member described and defended my MN mother to me as "a person of great innocence, extremely delicate and morally principled." Made me want to throw up!
I was told to suck it up and forget about everything she had done since she is not strong, and I can't fix it. This person has always lived far away and visits were rare and short - so he has no right to preach to me how harmless she is. Also suggested that this NC situation could very well destroy my fragile mother and it would be my fault for not forgiving her for abusing me. I am still very angry with his stupid ignorance but the day will come when I will just LOL.
Great new post, Anna. Evil narcissist enablers suck, too.
Thank you, Anna,
I feel like you read my mind. I've been thinking lately how helpful it would be for me to have Holy Scripture organized into the Lord's words on NC & evil. And I open your blog tonight, & there it is! You answered my prayer!
I also was contemplating the differences in our experiences, in trying to continue to relate to everyone's perspectives & hard-won wisdom, while continuing to navigate through the many layer upon layer upon layer of my huge N family. This post boiled it down to what I already know--evil is contagious. Get the hell away from it, as fast as you can. Whether it's just one N sib, as you have. Or a dozen + spouses, as I have.
Yes, it makes for a larger crowd in my case, & more complex continued challenges,
but the principles are all the same. What I've been calling a cancer lately-you called a virus. Same thing. God's Word applies the same way.
I am going to read & re-read this post, Anna. And memorize those chapters & verses & psalms. And keep them handy for when the "peacemakers" among the Sibs come around spouting "forgiveness" etc.
Thank you, Anna. I know you've done a world of good with the clearly presented thoughts in this post. God Bless you & yours,
Can someone please define for me the difference between God and a narcissist? I'm sorry, I was raised a Catholic and religion deluded me, filled me with with so much garbage, it has taken a lifetime to wade through it all to get to the truth. When you confess the Lord's prayer to the priest, is he not a little narcissist hiding behind the confession screen? I related to God, I wanted to to be special and separate from the hedonists. It was all in vain. You bring God into this blog and it really genuinely distorts things. Narcissists love to latch onto God and use it against their victims. What kind of man would claim he is the savior of mankind? Kind of narcissistic. Imagine all the lives lost, torture, over alleged God Jesus Christ. Columbus slaughtered many gentle natives who offered gifts while claiming to bring God to their uncivilized world. All the suffering over the egos involved with such a God! Not too nice, not too humble. A narcissist's martyr complex matches Jesus's mindset, save the world, mankind, die on the cross as God's son? Seems to me Jesus would be a huge narcissist in today's world. He would be considered a lunatic. How can you genuinely quote from scriptures long ago from delusional madmen? How can you do this knowing they oppressed women as such?
If you see God as a narcissist then I'm sure nothing I can say will convince you otherwise. You don't demonstrate yourself to be someone who is actually showing up for an intelligent conversation on the subject.
As I've pointed out before...to condemn Christianity because narcissists have successfully used it to mask their evil means you'd have to condemn every benevolent service agency ever invented. Professions sullied by narcissists: doctors, teachers, nurses, social work, the U.N., motherhood, on and on and on. Just because a narcissist has used something that is good to hide their evil doesn't mean there wasn't goodness or virtue in the institution they perverted. You need to broaden your thinking a bit. I do not seriously distort this blog by bringing the discussion around to religion. This blog would not exist except for my religion. It has shaped my thinking and enabled me to cut through the crap. It under-girds everything I write. Of course narcissists have often "latched onto God and used it against their victims" which is exactly the problem I'm addressing with posts such as this one. If you don't like posts where I talk about the Bible and God then don't read them.
There are numberless crimes that have been committed in the name of Communism and Fascism that dwarf the crimes done in the name of God even though Christianity got a 2,000 year head start. I hope you condemn those belief systems as heartily as you do Christianity.
This is a timely post for me.
Two nights ago, I was feeling lonely for my family, whom I have had to cut off. My mother is a narcissist, my sister is a narcissist, and my other sister and brother are so enmeshed that they cannot see the world unless they see it through an Ns eyes.
So...I have had to cut them off. My kids don't have contact with them, or with their cousins. It is lonely for them too. But my sisters kids all have facebook pages. I haven't seen their kids for years, but what I saw a few nights ago is my sisters and their kids all connecting and talking together over the internet (they live in separate states).
I sat there at first feeling really depressed, then it kind of hit me in the gut. They REALLY don't care that I am no longer around. They are actuallly having a GREAT life without me, so what the hell am I doing sitting around moping in front of a computer?
It was actually the smack upside the face that I needed to wake me up to reality. I have to get on, and STOP hoping against hope that they will CARE!!!!!
SO....accepting the fact that they won't change gives me the edge. I can now truly walk away from them, and KNOW that I am free, and I no longer have to carry around those memories of everything I didn't have. And all those little voices which say that my kids are missing out on their family are lies. My kids are learning to be empathic, compassionate human beings, who will, when they grow up, love their own children, and marry healthy minded people. We are growing a new family tree, because the old one is rotten to the roots.
The truth hurts.
And then it sets you free.
They love to latch onto God and use it against their victims? Of course they do. They're Ns. Latch onto God or latch onto a baseball bat -- makes no difference to them.
But in order for there to be counterfeit, there must be real. You simply cannot get away with a counterfeit 8 dollar bill.
But there are conterfeit Christians -- because there are real ones.
Jesus a lunatic? Well, then not just Jesus, but all of His followers, especially the ones who were with Him. Israel was occupied by the Romans. The Jews were horribly persecuted. The followers of Jesus, for the most part, were not learned men by today's definition, or even by the definition of the age. The Greeks at that time were devoted to "philosophy." And here comes a group of ragged, poor, unscholarly men and women claiming that Jesus was dead -- and now is alive. LUNATIC? Ummm...yeah. Unless they were telling the truth.
Imagine -- what the heck could drive oppressed people, unlearned people, fishermen and a former hater of Christians (Saul cum Paul) to make such outrageous claims as they did? Put their life on the line?? And this is literally. THey left home and families and spread throughout the world, telling people that Jesus died and was no longer dead. What nonsense! But they did it. And did it boldly.
And now we fast forward. Aren't these secular groups wonderful? Concerts for Bangledesh and Ethiopia. Where the heck are the Christians?
I'll tell you where they are -- in Bangledesh and Ethiopia -- with no media coverage. They've been there for YEARS. They suffer every day in the Sudan. And they're undercover, handing out food and supplies and digging wells. I KNOW. I've been a missionary and I've worked alongside some of the most loving, generous, giving people in the world. I've seen them leave home and go where it is dangerous to be -- so that they meet the physical needs of the poor. They are doctors and nurses and civil engineers. They are sometimes just willing bodies with two good hands. They are not counterfeit and they get no media coverage, nor do they seek any.
One of the reasons God sent Jesus, God incarnate, is so that there would be EMPATHY (not a trait of Ns). Jesus was tempted in all ways as we are, and understands. He is our High Priest, making intercession for us at all times.
Don't look at people to judge God. People will always let you down. But God is not one bit upset at your questions, your longings, your demand for knowledge and truth. He's not that petty! He INVITES you to question Him and seek Him.
But why look for God thru the priest in the dark confesional? Why look for God through the televangelists who oftentimes mock the very God they preach?
Quite frankly, why look for God in Anna's blog??? Why ask Anna?? Why ask ANYONE?
Go ask God. Go pick up the Book that has WITHSTOOD THE TEST OF TIME. READ what Jesus said. Ask HIM to reveal Himself to you. Your questioning is really a gift from God -- it's innate in all people. He WANTS to be sought. He WANTS to give you good gifts and wisdom and knowledge ....and peace. Because He is ALL GOOD, He knows that you cannot find true peace and love outside of Him. Not because He is an N, but simply because He is the source of all things good.
We live in a fallen world. There is pain and hurt and suffering --- but don't close your eyes to the fact there are WONDERFUL things in this world.
Start reading one of the 4 gospels today -- Matthew (a tax collector), Mark (a young idealist), Luke (a physician), and John (a son of thunder!! Someone who had a temper!). Read Jesus, not people.
Excellent post, Anna. Makes sense!
When I went NC with my N friend, another friend A ( a registered nurse) chided me about ending the friendship because "we had been friends for so long." I explained to her that this "friend" told me that he had terminal cancer, when in reality he didn't have as much as an ingrown toenail. The diagnosis coincided with a dream vacation I was about to leave on. Sick.
I am an atheist and still derive a lot of comfort and benefit from Anna's blogs. Everyone has a right to their religious beliefs, just as everyone has a right not to hold religious beliefs. I find Anna's blogs very insightful and extremely beneficial to me personally. I was the victim of a N family member and his wife, who are actually elders in their church, but I certainly do not hold all Christians to task for the way they treated me. Sadly, there is such a thing as an evil Christian, just as there are evil Fascists, Communists, etc. Equally, there are good people who do not hold any religious beliefs. In any event, this Atheist will continue to follow Anna's blogs - her insightfulness and experience transcend any individual belief system.
Regarding Christians who recommend forgiving your N: It's easy to mouth self-righteous, sanctimonious platitudes when you are not one of the N's victims. My mother went to an early grave forgiving her N mother for her horrible treatment of her and feeling unloved by her mother. My N grandmother, on the other hand, went to her grave as an unrepentent bitch who had destroyed everything she touched.
In my own life, had I been a little less forgiving of my N sister and tolerated less of her wicked mouth, it is possible we might have a relationship now. N bullies choose their victims carefully. They don't pull their crap on people who stand up to them or whom they know will cut them out of their lives if they continue.
A final note to the person who is offended by references to religion: For many of us, our religious upbringing is a huge part of why we have been N victims, so it's very appropriate to bring that in. At this point in my life, I am not all that religious, at least in a conventional sense. But the scripture and religious teachings of Christianity are a part of my soul and my consciousness that will always be there and will always color my perceptions of morality, ethics and how to live in this world.
And as Anna has pointed out many times, it's her blog. If you don't like the topics, read somebody else's blog.
Personally, I have found this blog tremendously helpful and enlightening in dealing (or cutting off contact) with my own N family member.
I really liked what Katrina said. Validation is what I have found on your blog. I went NC via letter late last yera. I had been torn because of my religious beliefs as well as the fear of lonliness,guilt and grief. I found your blog right after the holidays. You're a godsend. I recognize all of the manipulations now as demonstrated in your posts. I felt free after going NC and left Nrelative behind and in God's hands. I do recommend "People of the Lie" by M. Scott Peck, which gave me an initial insight that I could be free. You are so articulate on the subject. Thank you so much! Finding your blog was an answer to a prayer. - Reg
"They REALLY don't care that I am no longer around. They are actuallly having a GREAT life without me, so what the hell am I doing sitting around moping in front of a computer?"
Yup. Just that if you're happy/successful, make sure they don't know that or they will suddenly, er "care" again.
It's actually good they don't care. I wish more of them didn't care that someone went NC on them.
As for Christianity. I'm not a Christian either, but I actually found myself more comfortable with Anna's blog than I did with Kathy's.
You don't have to be a Christian to appreciate this blog.
Also, there's gigantic A-holes everything you go. They don't have to be Christian either.
I have never heard that evil is contagious before. But it sure makes sense. I witness this in my X mother in law every time the door revolves and the X-MN gets out of prison.
He is now living with her once again. The change in her is drastic. She goes from a nice sweet lady detesting what he has done and how he has wasted his life, and used her - to an excuse filled Alien contradicting all she said before. Its maddening.
4 months ago she lied to me saying that a big upcoming child support hearing was his problem but then 3 days later she showed up with him in court to defend him.
That was it! Im done with her! I have refused her phone calls since. I have tried many times to get her to see things in reality, when he isn’t around to contaminate her mind she understands, but its useless, she lets him back in her life and she gets conned all over again.
She I guess has what she wants now, her bouncing 56 year old baby boy to help in his endless time of need & to take care of until she dies or gets kicked out on the street because she lives in a senior citizens appt. and could get evicted with him living there.
Its her problem now. To save & support him, she isn’t a rich woman and I know he will suck her dry. But now it will happen without me to cry her woes to and spin HIS excuses at. Im done trying.
Anna I went NC with her before I found your blog. I really felt like he was influencing me thru her but could not exactly explain it. My son needed me to explain this to him, why am I being so mean ditching grama, and now I can. Now I can explain it as to protect myself from him she also must be out of my life. The evil is contagious and grama is infected. I just can not handle the mental craziness even second hand. Thank you for giving me strength and clarity thru your words.
May God help her - I cant.
I think that those people who insist that they forgive their N, they're still in a process of coming to acceptance with the situation. They choose to *deny* the situation as a coping mechanism. Or *bargain*, by thinking, "maybe if I'm nice enough to them.." or "I just need to be patient and pray".
But it's unfortunate that part of their grieving process involves trying to convince others (who have already come to acceptance) that they're wrong.
Amen. Just because we need to walk away, for our own health, does not mean God cannot save them or help them. He will do it in another way. It is not our obligation. In Phillipians 2 it tells us to think of others better than ourselves. My N MIL could never do that. She comes first. Like demand her kids give them 2 anniverary parties, then no mention of our 25th. It just was not important to her. Don't take her spotlight away.
I have some additional thoughts about the simpletons who stay in relationship with a N in order to *help* save them.
Aren't they actually hindering God's work by getting in the way of the natural consequences of the Ns behavior?
Aren't the consequences of sin often the very thing that leads a person to repentance?
So why are the simpletons standing in the way of that if they want the N to be saved?
Wouldn't NC serve as a consequence that could lead to repentance?
If the simpletons really wanted the N to be saved wouldn't they at least want to do it God's way?
By not allowing the N to have any consequences they are actually getting in God's way...not helping Him.
I don't believe that Ns are capable of repentance and having a true life change. Yet it seems that those simpletons who believe they can are actually preventing it by excusing their sin.
Good points all and they are all arguments I have presented in other posts. These simpletons must be very bad parents because a good parent allows the law of natural consequences to work with their children in order that the children can learn some important life lessons at an early age. To be shielded from the bad consequences of one's behaviors leads to more bad behaviors. Period. The simpletons increase evil in the world. Period.
Oh my goodness. Thank you, thank you, thank you for this blog! Anna, your analysis is spot-on. This is the message I've been trying to put out there for years, but you are so gifted in your critical thinking and your way with words I could never say it like you can. Praise God, he is giving you the revelation knowledge you need to help others and fight evil! Christians, PUL-LEAZE take this to heart and listen to what Anna is saying. You can check the Scriptures for yourselves. God does not want you to suffer your whole life at the hands of the Ns. He wants you to come out from them and be separate, touch no unclean thing, and he will be a Father to you and you will be his sons and daughters (2 Corinthians 6:17-18. I'm going to print this blog out and study it some more. Thank you again! You have blessed me greatly today.
Let me expand. I get hundreds of emails via my blog on this subject. I can not seem to impress on people enough that you will not "LIFT UP" the narc or psychopath... they will "DRAG YOU DOWN." It never, I repeat, never happens the other way.
I strongly recommend that women formerly involved with these men should read Sandra Brown, MA's WOMEN WHO LOVE PSYCHOPATHS -- because it is the good and positive things about you they target. Including your religious beliefs. In fact, they COUNT on it.
Sandra Brown has mentioned that years ago when she was treating psychopaths (she only treats their victims now) they TOLD her... they PURPOSELY TARGET X-tians, churches, church groups & Bible study because these people are the most likely to look the other way at their exploitive behavior. They go out of their way to use scripture to give them the air of believability & goodness.
Yes, Nparents too.
Get away from these people as fast as you can. Then pray for them. From a DISTANCE!
This is the message I've been trying to put out there for years, but you are so gifted in your critical thinking and your way with words I could never say it like you can.
While I do very much appreciate your compliment I have to say here that not only have you been saying this for years, you have been and are saying it very well. Who knows but that someone reading how I word it would get it better by reading how you put it! Different people, different wording, same concepts mean more people have a chance to get it.
Thanks for your kind encouragement and for letting me know this blessed you. :o)
Thank you for this critical information from the mouths of the psychopaths themselves. Is it any wonder at all that everyone who has been churchified at all has had the displeasure of dealing with some cloaked monster there? It really does annoy the hell out me that people don't expect to meet bad people in churches. No bad guy ever makes his living by appearing bad. He is drawn like a magnet to that which will cloak him best. His opposite. There is no position of power or authority in any human endeavor that hasn't been thoroughly exploited by evil people. It's such a "duh" piece of logic.
Again, thanks for sharing Ms. Brown's important knowledge on this point. And I heartily agree, pray for them...but for the sake of all that is good and pure and right...do it from a distance!
Evil absolutely IS contagious - and appears shockingly "normal" to those living inside the MN bubble. Do you all remember how long it took, from the first moment you KNEW all the evil narcissistic abuse heaped upon you was wrong until the moment you finally broke free? Decades? Decades to finally be deprogrammed? My MNfather's parents were both evangelical ministers who used the pulpit for their own sad little power trips (although not wealth or fame, they were pretty much failures in that regard) - because they were poor uneducated fools, and the brand of Christianity they chose was loose about formal education (no High School? No problem !). Any hierarchical power structure can be perverted and misused by sociopaths for their own nefarious ends. Religion just has a longer history of horrible misuse because it has been around in one form or another for at least ten thousand years, and used to also be the only form of government in existence.
There is a line in "The Life of Brian" where Jesus is doing the Sermon on the Mount and says "Blessed are the Peacemakers", only some of his followers in the back of the crowd heard "Blessed are the Cheese-makers" - any narcissistic enabler who quotes the peacemaker line to you should be informed (only if you can do this with a straight face) that "peacemakers" is a mistranslation from the original Greek, and Jesus was actually referring to purveyors of dairy products. It's good fun. Then you must absolutely insist you are correct. But hey! What are y'all doing talking to Narcissist co-abusers anyhow? -Aravis
When I finally told my mother that I had to end my marriage, as I was losing myself badly, she told me that I needed to just put my foot down and stay. I went to my brother, who is very Catholic, and asked him to read a book called Invisible Wounds, and brought him to the Family Violence Center to talk to a counselor with me. I thought he would finally understand. We walked out of there, and he said it was my cross to bear, and that I had made my bed, so I must lie in it. I truly had no support and gave him many chances. I finally had to go it only with 3 small children. I was dying inside a little more each day. Two years after I was out, my brother asked me how I was doing. I told him much better. He told me that he still was praying for my ex-husband and I to get back together, as that is what we had promised each other and God. In my mind, I held onto the fact that there was no way that God would want me to live that way.
I was talking with my non-MN stepson last night on the phone. He's been trying for many years to get both his MN brother and sister to change their behavior, and to correct their evil thinking. I asked him to consider how effective all of this hardwork has ever been, and the answer was "not at all." I pointed out that there comes a time when you have to cut them loose and to focus on what is best for him. It is something that he just hasn't been able to accept! He also thinks that he loves the MN mom and siblings. He hasn't come to realize yet that it is just his fantasy, they are incapable of loving anyone but their own fantasies of themselves. That is why they gravitate toward religion and church. To enable their fantasies that they are "good".
I think that we have to consider that having been raised in a MN environment, the normal children are often made to feel that the wellbeing of the MNs is their responsibility. They try and try to fix them because they think they have to; it's their job to rescue the perishing so to speak. It one of the ways that MNs keep their victims enmeshed with them. Also, when you are raised in that environment, its hard to know what is normal or healthy behavior. The skewed world of the MN is often your only point of reference and its hard to readjust your thinking once you have gotten outside that realm. In a twisted sort of way, the non-MN is comfortable with that environment because it is so familiar. It takes a great deal of prayer, bible-study and sound input before they can see that trying to save a MN is beyond their ability.
We keep praying for my son (which is how I really think of him) to be set free from the soul ties that he has to them and I think that it is happening although slowly. Notice that we pray for him to be set free, we've let go of the others and although we pray that God will do something with them if He can, we aren't expending much energy on them changing. The main thing that I am concerned about is that if my son will continue to expend his energy on them, eventually they will destroy his life if he doesn't break free. But we can't make those choices for him. He has to do that for himself.
For those that wonder why we go NC with "your sweet mom" or "your great brother or sister" etc. They need to be sent an original post by Anna with a link to this site. After reading all these posts and comments, there is no way they can't get it. This site will open their eyes.
Thank you, Anna for taking the time to write yet another
wisdom-filled post. Where do you find the time and energy to put all of your thoughts into this blog? Your words are a refreshing healing balm!
I truly have the greatest respect for you, and for so many of our faithful readers here. Talk about receiving a "Word Of Knowledge" each time I visit these pages!
Today, Bob Dylan's "Positively 4th Street" came on the radio. I really heard the words for the first time after all of these years. I do believe that he is referring to an mn. He just didn't have the terminology back then. But here it is:
Positively 4th Street, by Bob Dylan
You got a lotta nerve
To say you are my friend
When I was down
You just stood there grinning
You got a lotta nerve
To say you gota helping hand to lend
You just want to be on
The side that's winning
You say I let you down
You know it's not like that
If you're so hurt
Why then don't you show it
You say you lost your faith
But that's not where it's at
You had no faith to lose
And you know it
I know the reason
That you talk behind my back
I used to be among the crowd
You're in with
Do you take me for such a fool
To think I'd make contact
With the one who tries to hide
What he don't know to begin with
You see me on the street
You always act surprised
You say, "How are you?" "Good luck"
But you don't mean it
When you know as well as me
You'd rather see me paralyzed
Why don't you just come out once
And scream it
No, I do not feel that good
When I see the heartbreaks you embrace
If I was a master thief
Perhaps I'd rob them
And now I know you're dissatisfied
With your position and your place
Don't you understand
It's not my problem
I wish that for just one time
You could stand inside my shoes
And just for that one moment
I could be you
Yes, I wish that for just one time
You could stand inside my shoes
You'd know what a drag it is
To see you
I totally agree with you and your message is extremely important. I was for years a "prisoner" due to feelings of fear, obligation and guilt towards my MN ex-wife. Everyday I felt the pressure to go against my own morality and sense of right. It was hell, and even though I think I withstood the pressure quite well, there is no doubt - evil is contagious. It's one more reason for no (or as little as possible) contact. The only reason I need, though, is the fact that the exposure is generally very unhealthy. You don't willingly expose yourself to toxic gases, do you?
I guess there can be no doubt that God can save narcissists. But you don't see that very often, do you?
I think you are exactly right, Laura, saying that people who say they forgive their Ns, chose to deny and bargain and hope for a better outcome, or live so firmly under the N's control that they accept and allow the N to define reality. It's especially effective for people who were raised by Nfamilies. Anna, in an earlier post you said you were raised on a farm. So was I. It is much easier for an N to define reality and keep one's family under N control when the N isolates them away from outside influences. Our nearest neighbor was a half mile away, and the town where we went to school was 8 miles away, allowing my MNfather to not only define reality for all of us, including my enabler/mirror narcissistic mother, who conveniently never worked outside the home. My Nfather was a violent MN and wildly, physically abusive to my sister and I from the time we were infants (my one non-N grandparent told me Ndad was hitting us before we were a year old). I remember wishing he would hit my mom, too, because she might not have put up with being cold-cocked like she did the emotional, verbal, and mental abuse he heaped on all of us. Every morning N father would put on a suit and go off to work at a major multinational corporation and make like Harvey Milquetoast. My N-parents were quite the Pillars of the Community (as much as you can be in a tiny farming town), I can tell you, while living in the middle of nowhere so people could not hear the screams. My sister, in her mid-40s, is still the apologist and peacemaker and I know she thinks herself quite the wonderful humanist to be so forgiving and understanding of our father's "terrible childhood" which evidently confers upon him a life-long pass for his evil, abusive behavior. I told her once, "you endured far worse than he ever did, and you are not abusive to your kids, why does he get to behave so badly?" She just stared at me like I'd grown a third head or something. Now her kids excuse him too, and try to gain his favor and attention. He's also a serious misogynist and the first time my now-DH (then boyfriend) met him and the rest of my family of origin, we were all walking somewhere and a woman came by who was well endowed and he said aloud to the group, including my mom, sister, her husband, and their elementary school kids "will you look at the udders on that one?" He has been such a jerk for so long, and gotten a pass from his family, that he now doesn't even bother to contain himself in front of people he might want to impress. And my sister or her husband didn't bat an eye or think it in any way remiss of him to speak so in front of their 7-year-old daughter. This happened in the early 90s, and my DH still speaks of how stunned he was. So anyway, sorry, this is rambling, but I thought it perfectly illustrated Laura's point that N-apologists cannot see what is right in front of them. Most are either completely ignorant, not having ever lived with a narcissist; or have been firmly brainwashed since childhood to accept such awful treatment as "normal". The Non-N family members are like people raised by wolves. Actually, come to think of it, wolves would have done a better job than my family. The only hope is to raise your kids away from the toxic stew, so they do NOT learn that evil behavior is fine, if the perpetrator has a "good enough" excuse.
THAT song has been MY mn anthem for the past 5 years, since my sister jezebel finally came out of the COVERT mn closet in a screaming phone call to me, & subsequently went into OVERT mode.
That "crowd" I used to be among, is my 13 sibs. As they've believed her BS these more recent years, & the smear campaign/mass shunning has taken on more momentum, this song applies to more & more of them. As, EVIL IS CONTAGIOUS!
The words are so perfect. Leave it to Dylan to sum up the feelings so well, & express them with so much "in your face". I especially love where he calls them out on their hypocritical BS & says "when you know as well as me, you'd rather see me paralyzed". Ain't that the truth?!
Think of the SUPPLY that would give them! People pitifully inquiring about us, & getting them lots of attention & sympathy, as well as them looking pious, like it affects THEIR life, while they put on the good show that they care. HAHA! AS IF they'd care.
And of course the last line always gets me rockin. "You'd know what a drag it is to see you." HAHAHA
Can you just imagine their OUTRAGE?
How DARE we not want to see them coming.... HAHAHA...jokes on them.
I guess there can be no doubt that God can save narcissists. But you don't see that very often, do you?
No, I haven't seen a narcissist change which is what I would expect to happen if God got a hold of 'em. The reason seems clear. God can only save sinners. Narcissists are already perfect and don't need anyone's help including God's. The narcissist spits on God's offering of salvation because they perceive themselves as above that. They don't need to change. It's the rest of us who are their problem. Once God fixes you and me then we will be able to see just how very perfect the narcissist is already!
After having nc for over 3 years,I just received another card from the other sil.For 20 years she has never shown any interest in my family.All of a sudden, a card comes with a picture. She, like the others, act as if nothing ever happened.Once again, it just proves that they are still in their n fantasy and have no remorse(nor will they).My dh thinks that this won`t be the end of it.He thinks that my n brother will be the next to try and contact me. They really are in another world.
I am one of those people who post links to your site. I just post the link without commenting nowadays. Here is how I understand this issue.
My MIL used to snap "Let go, and let God" as her perpetual motto. How many times can you hear that old saw before you tune out? She reminded me of Joy's mother in an episode of My Name is Earl. But I digress.
MIL's motto was her warped way of saying that I should just forget about everything she did and continue to let her abuse me and my family. She took her favorite saying from a 12-step group that she joined supposedly because of her husband. She denied that she had the same problem, too, but my husband told me about it. In other words, MIL thought that God was on her side.
It took years before I finally realized what that saying really meant, when it was not distorted by MIL.
It means step aside and let God do his bidding. Admit that you have no power over the situation, get your ego out of the way and leave everything in the hands of God. God, as you recall, was around in the Old Testament. He is nobody's fool.
So, that is what I did. I gave up on any form of contact with MIL, my husband joined me, and we sent her a cease and desist letter. We got an unpublished, unlisted phone number and then we moved. We did a temporary relocate for our mail, and checked the box telling the post office not to sell our address information to outside companies. We gave the post office our cell phone number for verification purposes. MIL had used a magazine subscription to get our information before. We even withheld permission for our child's school to publish his name and photo anywhere.
Now, it is out of our hands. It is in the hands of God. God can handle it perfectly well without our help..."it" being MIL. God did not want us to continue suffering. God knows how to wage war with the devil, so we did not stand in the way any more. Let the expert do His job.
Why didn't I see that sooner?
I thought I would share my "theme song as well. I heard this song on the radio shortly after going NC and learning about MNs (as in putting a difinition to all the craziness). It's timing was PERFECT! It's by the offspring - it's call "You're gonna go far kid."
And is it not a perfect example of Ns, eNablers and their victims?
(I went with the "radio edit" the explisitives are bleeped out!)
Show me how to lie
You’re getting better all the time
And turning all against the one
Is an art that’s hard to teach
Another clever word
Sets off an unsuspecting herd
And as you get back into line
A mob jumps to their feet
Now dance, *bleep*, dance
Man, he never had a chance
And no one even knew
It was really only you
And now you steal away
Take him out today
Nice work you did
You’re gonna go far, kid
With a thousand lies
And a good disguise
Hit ‘em right between the eyes
Hit ‘em right between the eyes
When you walk away
Nothing more to say
See the lightning in your eyes
See ‘em running for their lives
Slowly out of line
And drifting closer in your sights
So play it out I’m wide awake
It’s a scene about me
There’s something in your way
And now someone is gonna pay
And if you can’t get what you want
Well it’s all because of me
Now dance, *bleep*, dance
Man, I never had a chance
And no one even knew
It was really only you
And now you’ll lead the way
Show the light of day
Nice work you did
You’re gonna go far, kid
With a thousand lies
And a good disguise
Hit ‘em right between the eyes
Hit ‘em right between the eyes
When you walk away
Nothing more to say
See the lightning in your eyes
See ‘em running for their lives
Now dance, *bleep*, dance
He never had a chance
And no one even knew
It was really only you
So dance, *bleep*, dance
I never had a chance
It was really only you
With a thousand lies
And a good disguise
Hit ‘em right between the eyes
Hit ‘em right between the eyes
When you walk away
Nothing more to say
See the lightning in your eyes
See ‘em running for their lives
Lord of the flies
Hit ‘em right between the eyes
Hit ‘em right between the eyes
When you walk away
Nothing more to say
See the lightning in your eyes
See ‘em running for their lives
for sharing your thoughts about that Dylan song. I didn't realize before how much the words applied to every one of those former mn's who attempted to smear, abuse, terrorize, and demoralize me.
Your family situation is a hard one w/so many people thrown into the mix...the crowd. We must continue to keep our 'Shield Of Faith' on at all times.
The lyrics you quoted also got me thinking w/mn's, there is never a middle ground. It is what it is, evil! Not a clink of sunlight among them. Continue to walk in faith as Our Divine Parent knows and sees all, the Great Comforter. Peace and Grace for all of your journeys. Anon 7:20
Th Those Who Think That Christians should accept their Ns and just "be the bigger person."
NO. Why would you even entertain the notion that the abused must be silent and the abuser must be understood? Where would you even get a notion like that?
What if the abused were still a young child? Would you tell that young child to just "pray for mommy" and not try to remove the victim instead? Would you stand there and allow this child to be abused? Or an elderly person? Or an animal?
of course you wouldn't.
So why would you tell someone who's old enough to be out on their own to remain abused?
It is NOT okay.
So now -- what if you think adult children should stick around and be abused but not young children? So what does the adult child then do with their young children --- the adult child takes the abuse, but somehow is supposed to protect their young child from it? Get abused, but don't let grandchildren of the N into the mix?
Can't you see how insane that is??
NO. It is NOT acceptable to take food and beds from children who are losing their father. Mr/Ms. Christian find me a single verse that says that God would find that acceptable. Heck, find me 1/2 a verse. Then I'll admit you're right.
The reason abuse victims have such a struggle with anger is because it is so very difficult to accept as reality that which is so totally inacceptable. The behavior of Ns is TOTALLY, ONE HUNDRED PERCENT UNACCEPTABLE.
You know English -- un-acceptable. That which can not be accepted.
Next time you want some victim of abuse to just suck it up ask yourself when was the last time you said to your child, who did something completely age-related, but nevertheless wrong, that their behavior was UNACCEPTABLE?
Now MAGNIFY that behavior and stick it onto an adult.
You want victims to remain in contact with their abusers? Good. Next time your kid tells you to "shut up" just accept THAT.
Don't correct or punish your child -- just run to your room and say a prayer for that child.
I'm sure your god would approve of such parenting.
My MIL used to snap "Let go, and let God" as her perpetual motto. ....MIL's motto was her warped way of saying that I should just forget about everything she did and continue to let her abuse me and my family.
Ah, that brings back memories. The last time my NMom was all ready to dish out her verbal tirade and abuse, she was nearly stopped cold when I brought out a notebook to write down all her verbal tirade and abuse. Her immediate reaction was, "Don't write down what I say, don't hold me responsible for what I say!"
Ha! I wrote everything down and her usual 3 hour rant became 1 hour instead. That was the last time she dished the big one, from there on it was many little dishes until I could finally ditch her 5 months agao though I'm not totally NC.
Yes, malignant narcissism is a malignancy that runs in families. When you finally understand that you must go NO CONTACT, you are cutting out the cancer in your life. You have a chance to recover.
Thanks, again, Anna, for what you do for us children born into evil! It's never to late to get rid of that cancer and be cancer free.
Let us celebrate our no contact. For no contact means PEACE. For some of us, it may take many, many, many, many years of confusion and suffering; but when you FINALLY realize that no contact is the ONLY ANSWER, you are truly free...free of the MN and their evil enablers. They don't love you or care about you. You are JUST BEING USED. Realize that you are BEING USED. They despise you and are totally envious of you. Envy means HATE. They hate you.
It took me such a long, long time to finally sever my "relationship" with my MN mother. And guess what...she doesn't give a damn. And I finally have peace. Peace that could have been mine if only I had realized the situation earlier. But I did the best I could. I realize that I thought I was protecting myself by sucking up to evil but now I am free. She can't to anything to me. She did the final act. She disinherited me even while I was bending over backwards to please her. Evil, evil bitch. She's the one whose lost out on a good daughter. What a loss for her. What a stupid woman. All that we could have shared and she has nothing.
Peace and health to you all who suffer and to those who are free. It is your choice. You can choose to be free of evil or continue to live with hell.
Anonymous Feb 4 6:43 PM
I concur with you.My whole family are n and could care less if I`m around.My nm is an evil bitch and my nd is a selfish and mean ba....d. They`ve been sending cards lately. For what reason, I don`t know.The relationships have always been a one way street with them.You can never win with n`s.You`re "damned if you do and damned if you don`t."
My sister, with whom I am pretty much NC, only calls me if she wants something. The only person she truly cares about is herself. I used to feel guilty because she is family, but then "family" isn't supposed to physically and emotionally abuse you.
Realizing that I meant as much to her as last year's calendar, has helped me move on. Maybe God will save her, and maybe he'll save a rabid dog, but I'm not letting either one of them in my house to find out.
If STRANGERS did to us what N's did, no one would have a doubt to call it evil. It would be considered absolutely crazy and dangerous for victims to do anything else but shun all connection to them. Yet this is exactly what we are pressured to do from almost all quarters.
N's exploit every trick in the book, but ever notice how simple those tricks are? The tricks seem amazing because they are so truly and profoundly powerful when they work, but the moment they don't work on us they look mighty pathetic.
Belief in them is the number one simple tool that N's use to great effect, and I think it is the underlying tool to their power. As long as any part of us "believes", we are meat. Once we believe they can hit all the other buttons on their 'N remotes', like hope and guilt and fear and responsibility and so on and watch us supply NS. The moment we stop believing in them, none of the other buttons work at all.
Appeasers never help N's, they always make them worse. And appeasers will and do throw innocent people under the bus eventually .
Even for the ethical non-appeaser type - you still catch evil, because N's can make ethical people [who refuse to hurt the innocent] self-destructive from all the confusion, without realizing that they are still hurting the innocent: themselves.
I have just gotten an email from my enabling sister and I am feeling absolutely crazy in the head after reading it.
I posted my email and my sister's response on a forum that I am a part of and the women there can't seem to see through my sister's BS. I'm trying to de-construct her email but I can't think clearly because I'm feeling emotional. Could I post it in the comments section and get some feedback? Or is there someone here familiar with enabling "Christian" sisters of N-moms who could help me? The forum is usually so helpful and the responses there are actually deepening my confusion. This is the only place I could think of where I find some truth.
My sister's email actually relates to this topic because she talks about how she wants to be there to lead our N-mom *back to the Lord.* Argh!
Go for it, Sojourner Kate. I specialize in deconstructing N-crap letters.
In order to put my sister's email in to context, I will copy/paste my original email to her. Then I'll post her BS filled reply and look forward to the de-construction.
Thank you so much for your reply to my email. I really appreciate your honesty. I think that there is a fine line to walk being siblings of a difficult aging parent. We need to be able to communicate in an honest way in order for both of us to see the bigger picture. I think that this crosses the line if it becomes gossip....which it hasn't. It also crosses a different line if either one of us goes back to mom with the things we've discussed. I'm fairly sure that we're not going to cross either line here, so I feel comfortable with proceeding.
First of all, I am so sorry to hear that this is difficult and uncomfortable for you. I know how hard it is to deflect mom's comments about the person she is upset with...even when you have the best intention not to discuss it with her. It used to feel to me like she had a myriad of ways to pass on information that I had asked her not to talk about. It's so frustrating when you don't want to be in the middle and yet you are still hearing things about another person.
One thing I realized is that although we have dealt with the same mother...our relationships with her have been very different. You and I have different personalities...we also have different birth order....and played very different *roles* in our family of origin. So there are things that you have experienced that I don't really understand and vice versa. I found it interesting that Mom does not gossip about other people or malign their character while talking with you. I think that in many ways she *behaves* herself around you more than she does around me. This is my own fault. I have allowed her bad behavior for many, many years.
She is used to treating me a certain way and to there being a certain *flavor* to our conversations. I have been one of her primary emotional confidantes for years. I have listened to endless monologues about her health problems. I have listened to her sad tales about who is hurting or victimizing her, and about her dreams and spiritual life and relationships and opinions and all the rest of it. She also uses me as a punching bag and I have allowed that. The times I have spoken up and either set boundaries or expressed my hurt/dismay have been few and far between. The only result I have seen from these few times has been that she seems to then deliberately increase the behavior I am asking her to curtail.
My way of dealing with her in the past has been to try to be the bigger person, not take it personally, to forgive each insult and slight, and to just try to shake it off after I've talked to her. This has been getting progressively more difficult for me to pull off. I've realized that I've been more concerned with meeting her needs than with meeting my own. I've also had my doctor and my current therapist tell me that I needed to set boundaries/get distance from mom or that I would continue to go downhill with my health and state of mind.
I am sorry to hear that she is using anti anxiety medication to deal with the issues in her life right now. That must put pressure on you when you hear about it. I'm sorry that you are having to deal with the fall out of my attempt to set some boundaries. I really understand because I heard many tales of how mean you were and how it was pushing her over the edge when you were attempting to curtail her behavior.
I know that she is upset right now, but I often feel as though she is emotionally blackmailing me. She has held people hostage to her intense fragility and illnesses for years. For so many of those years I played along as she would have me do. Now I am just worn out and unable to take care of anyone's needs other than my own. For many years I was the dutiful and loyal daughter who took whatever she wanted to dish out. I can't go back to being the person that I was...even if Mom has a huge meltdown and medical crisis over it.
I do have some comments on some of her ailments that she is scaring you about. I also have the same type of cortisol dysregulation and I have had it for about 20 years. It is difficult, but not life threatening. It is easy to manage through medication and stress reduction. Xanax is not a good choice for managing this condition. In fact, it often has a rebound effect and makes the condition worse.
I know Mom's current ailments pretty well. We've talked about them for many hours over the last couple of years. Remember, my past conversations with her are much longer that your typical conversations have lasted (once again, because you have set better boundaries than I have!) I know this sounds very cold hearted but I have become very wary of what mom says about her ailments because I don't know what is real and what is something she is using to get attention. Last year she had a big crisis with having a spider bite and having Lyme disease. Lyme disease is a SERIOUS illness and it does not just go away. It needs to be aggressively treated for a number of years before the active stage of the disease is eradicated. I recently asked Mom how she was doing with that. She cut me short with the comment that she didn't have that any more and it wasn't an issue. That didn't make sense to me and caused me to question her in my mind.
I have also noticed that she goes through doctors at a good rate. I always seem to hear about the great doctor, or clinic, that is finally helping her to find out what is wrong with her and to heal. Then six months or a year later, she is on to someone else. The ailments seem to change rapidly too. I realize that she does have some legitimate medical problems such as high blood pressure, the bleeding ulcer that she had, the herpes infection, etc. But since I know about some of these ailments because of research I've done on my own, I also know that a lot of what she says about her own health problems just doesn't add up. I don't want to be heartless. But I think she uses these things and often magnifies their symptoms in order to get attention from her family and even the medical community. Remember her doctor W*** M****? I read between the lines that he told her he couldn't treat her any more. Do you ever wonder why?
I also want to address the idea that she has no idea what she has done and that she can't help being the way she is. Based on her behavior...not what she says...but her behavior....I don't think that's true.
If she doesn't know what she's done, why does she modify her behavior when she's with you? If she truly couldn't help it, wouldn't she treat everyone in the same way? She's nice to my grown children, her neighbors, maybe some friends. She behaves herself and doesn't gossip about people when she's with you. So what does that say?
I have also heard her admit that she knows that she is difficult, argumentative, egotistic, and intense. She has told me that she likes being that way. The last time I talked to her she told me about a big fight that she had on the phone with her friend J****. Mom said that she enjoyed the fight because she was *in an argumentative mood.* I could give you many more examples of this. Did you know that she admitted to me that she had tried to take H*******s(my oldest daughter) affections when she was going to college and lived near Mom? It was one of the most bizarre conversations I have ever had in my life.
I don't believe that she can't help her behavior or doesn't know what she's doing. Barring a brain tumor or advanced Alzheimers, that excuse just doesn't hold water.
I don't see Mom as a bad person. I see her as a sick person. But I also see her as someone who has set up her world so that it revolves around her. If someone doesn't play by her rules she gets upset. But that isn't the way life works. We all have to deal with the natural consequences of our actions. That is how God brings us to repentance. Did you ever think that maybe God doesn't want Mom to die with all of these sins on her conscience? She's dabbled in black arts and doesn't think there's anything wrong with it. I probably know a lot more about her occult activities because she has talked to me about them. You and your husband have a reputation with her as being pretty hard line Christians. She doesn't like that. She sees me as being less rigid and therefore regales me with her tales from the dark side. It isn't pretty and I have at times feared for her soul.
I know that this is hard stuff to look at. It is easier to look at her and feel bad for her and kind of get drawn into her drama with her as the victim. I lived in that place for so many years! I feel like it was the Lord who finally got me out of my stupor and showed me what I was truly dealing with.
Please look at what actually happened instead of what Mom is telling you that happened. There isn't a rift between her and I. She is resisting any change to the relationship with
At this point, it is really up to her to decide how to handle it. I know she is aging, but I don't think she's as helpless and feeble as she says she is. At any rate, I can't go back to being her Punching Bag.
Let me know what you think of all of this. I know it's a lot to digest. It might help if you read it over a couple of times..I do that often because it's so hard to think and write about these kinds of topics.
Okay. Here's her reply. While I do agree with some of what she says, she manages to neatly sidestep just about everything I've said about NM. My sister seems to over spiritualize everything. She makes promises to not triangulate, but she always ends up betraying me in the end. Her behavior and her words do not ever match!
I really like what you had to say and I have been "digesting" everything for a day or two now. Here are my thoughts - in a moment of inspiration I realized that we are really talking about a couple of main things here - dignity, privacy and integrity. What we are and have been asking of Mom, (and of each other too) is that our conversations be ones of integrity, that our relationships with each other should be treated as private - ie what goes on between the 2 people who are interacting (positive or negative) should be kept private and finally, that we treat and are treated respectfully by the other person in the relationship. I will never forget what that therapist I saw for a while said to me - He said, "you teach people how to treat you." That is something I have tried to apply with everyone from business contacts to family because I think it is awesome. It is one of the things that has helped me so much with Mom because it is not about what feels "comfortable" or familiar - it is about what is right. I realized that what we both have been trying to do is to do what is right - which is challenging when we have been trained (and then subtley pressured by Mom) to behave in ways that really weren't right - they were messed up. Hence the wading through the quagmire of childhood training verses eternal truth. I do not think it is any coincidence that you were praying about your life and health etc and then you were lead by God to make things "right" with Mom. We have the Holy Spirit in us and let's face it - God is perfectly, absolutely right all the time. Now, I am not saying that we are better than anyone else, only that we have a longing inside that drives us to want to do what is right and to have our relationships be right. I think this is what has gone against Mom's grain since her upbringing entailed alot of control, enmeshed behavior, manipulation, gossip etc (all of them works of the flesh) Here we are as Christians living by the Holy Spirit wanting to live a different way - and there, I believe, is the rub.
As far as all the particulars of Mom's specific disfunctions and how they play out in each one of our lives, the details to me are not as important as the bigger picture. You and I could probably agree on certain similar scenarios we experience but then again there are other things that you experience and have experienced that I never have and probably never will and vise versa. I think the bigger picture is to live according to God's Spirit and His word - not as some sort of abstract religious exercise but as a real way of walking. I think Jesus is a perfect example. He always said what was true - some people loved Him for it, some hated Him and some hated Him so much they had Him killed. So, with Mom, it is still ingrained in me to a certain extent to please her. This has NOT been healthy - I think through whatever means each of us needs to employ to get to the same point that it is really about being a God pleaser and not a man pleaser. The great thing about living for God is that His ways are perfect - they also bring us joy, peace and satisfaction. Unfortunately being a God pleaser means doing what may be uncomfortable to us and disappointing or frustrating to Mom. The outcome however I believe is the peaceable fruit of righteousness
and what I would call "Shalom" - wholeness and health in our whole being.
So, that was my inspiration. Practically it is tough because sometimes still I am afraid of making Mom mad etc, etc. But ultimately, by us setting an example of a healthy relationship and requiring that she participate in healthy interaction and not allow her to get by with her unhealthy, destructive habits I think we not only save ourselves from grief but we help her too.
My goal is to remember this in all my interactions with you and with Mom. Remember when we were reading in Isaiah about being the repairers of the breach and the restorer of streets to dwell in? Well, I think what we are doing is living that out practically by refusing to continue with the destructive behaviors - the vain manner of life handed down to us by our foremothers. Is is easy? no. Is is good? Yes!
So, my dear sister, let's continue to support each other in our efforts to do what is right, knowing that we will mess up and won't be perfect but that what we are doing in my opinion is something with huge ramifications for good. As far as the details of why Mom is why she is - LORD only knows. I do know that she got messed up by her Mom for sure and that the fallout has been pretty gnarly. My hope for Mom and my relationship with her is that I can model what is healthy and that she will realize that what we are doing is a better way of being and that through that she will come back to Christ and Christ alone for her salvation. That is my highest, loftiest hope.
Anyway, I hope what I have said makes sense.....I love you lots and I am so glad that we have continued to run our Christian races and that hopefully, even though we have fallen alot that we can continue to heal our relationship as sisters making it better than it has ever been before.
No pressure on anything, but know that I am supporting you in thoughts and prayers as you endeavor to do what is right with Mom.
LOve you bunches!
I have finally gone no contact with my N mother for a month. My father who plays the role of the classic co N, has called family membeers and friends, to get them to talk to me because he does not know what to do anymore, my mother cryes everyday and he tells them my mother and I had a "misunderstanding". I am exhausted but determined. Any advise about what to expect at the begining stages of going no contact would be so appreciated. Anna you are the answer to my prayers.
You know what I saw missing from your sister's reply... feelings of compassion for you that you have suffered through being a punching bag, that your emotional and physical health have been hurt and that you have tried for so long to be kind and do what was right, but the abusive behavior still continued.
It's like no consideration for YOUR good judgment. No support for your well being. You said "I'm sorry" a million times to ease her possible pain... but got no "I'm sorry" for you.
That's what I hate about all these kind of pious observations that use religion to control others. It is just a crutch to enable them to get off scott free from feeling bad, lets them continue on with their blissful path of self-righteousness with out ever having to feel bad themselves, and enables them to make you the scapegoat... so that they don't have to feel conflicted and take a good hard look at themselves.
At least that is what happened to me at the hands of my sister and brother. My sister gave me the *honor your father and mother* jive, and I asked her what does the bible say about how she was treating me! They didn't tell me my mother had died. I'm their scapegoat for all the feelings that they have but don't want to look at. I'm the baby of the family, (I'm guessing you are too) and my 1st born sister loves to be the long suffering, pious one. Being the good Christian she is, she hasn't spoken to me in 6 yrs and I have suffered greatly because of it. My judgment or feelings just didn't matter.
Finally the other night I had a light go off in my head remembering how strong my dad was and how he believed that no one had the right to treat others in insulting or negative ways. Ever. What a relief that was to me to remember that and believe it!!! Now I can feel inside that NO ONE has the right to hurl their crap on me ....NO ONE. I don't need to try and be some kind of holy, long suffering, peace maker who lets screwed up people shit on me. Whether it's someone close or just the guy on the street.
They. have. no. right.
And a real friend, or caring sister would be feeling for you and giving you support! Not telling you to walk the walk, blah, blah, blah. After all, she hasn't suffered the wrath like you have... and probably doesn't have the depth of feelings that you do either.
You're doing the right thing.
Remember what my dad said ... no one has the right to treat you that way! (said with great conviction and a healthy dose of pissed off-ed-ness!)
She sounds like she doesn't really care [but wants to sound like she does] about what you specifically said, but seems most eager to define your relationship to her as close and strong and positive. Sounds like pressure to make sure you don't ditch her too since she realizes you have obviously made some changes in how you view your obligations to family members.
It took an act of supreme will for me to force myself to read through your sister's email. Painful.
I don't have too much to say about her response to you because mostly I would describe it as "non responsive". She is in another universe. La la la la lalala. She wrote in one long string of Christian sentiments and platitudes and all is very vague. There is really nothing there to pin down. The only thing I could come away with is that she is solidly in a Savior Complex mode and spoke to you like you are there with her...which, of course, means she ignored the thrust of what you were trying to get across to her.
Your sister reminds me of mine. My sister waxed long and Christian in my ear about how only she and I were close enough to Mom for God to use us to "fix" her. I would not be able to calculate the number of conversations along this line I was forced to sit through. Because I lived so far away from my mother it was easy enough to let my sister's sermons slide off me. My sister always acted like we were both on the same page about saving our mother from herself no matter what I said to the contrary. Because my sister was unable to get outside herself at all she couldn't see me and my real thoughts and reactions. I am convinced that my sister is much less interested in saving our mother than she is interested in staying in our mother's life and gaining the upper hand with her. It is all part of my sister's power play. And I'm sure my sister gets a special thrill thinking she is so godly and so much more advanced along the Christian way than our mother...and most everyone else including me. All this to say that I get a very similar vibe off your sister. Can you just back quietly away and commence little to no contact with your sister? Is this desirable for you? Is it important to keep your sister in your life? Do you trust her with your secrets? Has she been dependable in the past? If the answers are no then I doubt she has said anything in this email that will inspire real trust on your part of her intentions toward you or her willingness to allow you the latitude to make the decisions you need to concerning your mother. I think she is in this for herself. Grooming you to be a patsy.
I'm sorry I haven't anything too profound on this. Your sister comes off like a sack of shit to me. All I see is a pompous, self-righteous person who is trying to manipulate you to say and do what she wants you to say and do. She isn't listening to you. Cut her loose. Let her "save" your mother. That'll free you up to save yourself.
Wow! Your sister really knows how to live in the abstract, doesn't she?? You were both speaking of "transportation," but you were speaking of cars and she was speaking of trains.
IMHO, you both were pretty abstract. Unless people get down to specifics there is no real conversation, yet both people believe there was.
But she said something really manipulative -- she said "in a moment of inspiration...." Ummm.. and how is one to debate that??? She's going to insist she had some kind of divine revelation --- and, ergo, ipso fatso, she's right.
Okay. She says Jesus was always right. Yep. And HE NEVER submitted Himself to abuse UNTIL THE TIME HE CHOSE. No one abused Him. He had some harsh words for those who were abusive to God, to Him, to His people. The trial and crucifixtion WAS HIS DOING, not THEIRS. And He did it to bestow on people THE RIGHT to be saved IF THEY CHOSE. But don't be misled -- His life was not taken from Him; HE gave it. He REMOVED HIMSELF from those who would abuse him.
John 8:59 (NAS):
Therefore they picked up stones to throw at Him, but Jesus hid Himself and went out of the temple
Luke 4:29-30 (NIV):
They got up, drove him out of the town, and took him to the brow of the hill on which the town was built, in order to throw him down the cliff. But he walked right through the crowd and went on his way.
As a Christian you are no longer to live as a slave, in bondage to fear:
Romans 8:15-16 (English Standard):
15 For you did not receive the spirit of slavery to fall back into fear, but you have received the Spirit of adoption as sons, by whom we cry, “Abba! Father!” The Spirit himself bears witness with our spirit that we are children of God,
You are a different person, a new person, and you have been set free from old baggage:
2 Cor. 5:17
Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come!
You've been "adopted" by God thru the death of Jesus. You seek Him and do what He says - not what someone else wants because they had a "moment of inspiration."
Maybe God is telling her to hang in there with dear old mom -- who knows? But seek Him --- and know who are you in Him. His child.
Anonymous said "Any advise about what to expect at the begining stages of going no contact would be so appreciated."
Every trick in the book - literally! Read up on this blog and expect it all. I've just recently (and am still) going through this NC thing. I've been through the "you just misunderstand her" thing, "she is just that way" thing, and am currently the prime charactor assasination target. They will try to whine & cry and act as if you misunderstood, then when that doesn't work (don't let it work!!) they will move on to enlisting the eNabler army - which I guess is already happening to you, then most likey the slander will begin. You will see alot of your friends and family's true selves come out after going NC - it's hard to get that all at once but at least you will know the truth. Being around Ns is all about false reality & lies so its almost refreshing when even hard truth comes your way. It's choas at first but as the months go by you WILL feel more peace I promise!
PS - "medical problems" and "money problems" are often used as a pity tool against your compassion - do not fall for this horse crap. They will often try to beat you into submission with it. I've said this before - eveything is a tool. An ax can be used to cut down trees and build shelters to protect people or can be used to harm. It's about how you use it - like a mad person they WILL use any & everything they can get! For pity or control - most don't really care which. Stay Strong it is SO worth it. And do not automatically trust the rest of your family - the Ns will at least try to use them against you.
My first thoughts were sadness. For you & for her both. To have been messed up the way you were, the way I was. The way so many of us were. Generational effects.
Your sister seems to be in a huge state of denial. She doesn't want to hear about the horrible things you experienced throughout your life, with your mother. She doesn't want to have to look at your being your mother's Punching Bag. She doesn't want to credit you with strong character for drawing your sensible line in the sand. To deny that, she sweeps it under the rug & lays claim to having been through "similar" things that YOU can't understand.
So she wants to just "skip over details". That's where the invalidation lies. YOUR experiences
were not just "frivolous details".
They were a horrible mosaic of intrusions on your life. Usurptions that should never have taken place. On your time,mind, emotions, mental & physical health.
On relationships that were DEFINITELY yours & yours alone. Your daughter's affections, for God's sake. Your mother ADMITTED she tried to usurp them. For your sister to pull the "let's focus on the big picture card" is continuing the victimization of you the victim.
However, having said that, the positive reality of YOUR life TODAY remains.
YOU are able to see through this enough to ask Anna if you can run it by her on her blog.
You have LIVED through all this tough stuff. It's not just some dark novel that you can read, then put down & pretend it was fiction, the way your sister wants you to.
YOU are healthy enough to say TOXIC. You're not going to drink the poison. You know you are strong enough to decide not to live it anymore. You are strong enough to know that as much as it sucks to have NC with "family", NOT being NC sucks exponentially MORE!
Your sister is NOT in the same growth pattern as you. Hopefully someday she will grow up & out also, but YOU can't worry about that. That one IS in God's hands.
As Anna said, save yourself! We can't always do both. (Saviour Complex). Sis is lightyears BEHIND you in recovery. Just like my many sibs. Unfortunately, that makes her dangerous to you. She does say some things that are true-about the early training (by our Nparent messing up our heads to reality.) But her head is STILL in the sand. Yours is not.Yours is on straight.
Having already TRIED the route I see happening here, having tried to explain my position on familial relationships, behaviour, & reasoning, with many of my sibs over the past few years, only to see it turn into MORE of a clusterf*** as a result, I highly reccomend you reflect on Anna's questions to you. Open written communication such as you had with your sister can backfire. My words have been twisted around, taken out of context, forwarded all over the place, & warped into an even more vile picture than if I had just left it alone & not tried to justify, defend, or explain myself. ("JADE"--anyone remember what the A stands for? Its been driving me crazy.)
As for the whole Christian spin. We all know about the Holy Spirit dwelling in us, & our desire to follow where He leads. But WTF does THAT have to do with THIS?!
Stay strong. You're thinking seems right to me.
I am just catching up on this post and the comments today....and won't have time to read all of it....and re-read it. Ugh. Heavy heart, I feel...and the ubiquitous weariness of a lifetime of ughMemories. I hear you...if not in all the words...or in my intellect...I HEAR you in the depth of my Heart and Soul.
I, too, have a Sis...who only 'gets it' in part. I no longer try to enlighten her. SHE WASN'T 'RAPED'..(I use this term because the violation is that complete. 'Rape' is not just something that happens to your BODY.) I took the 'hit' in our family while the rest looked the other way....either to save their own asses....or out of ignorance. I don't care. I don't have to PROVE the 'rape' to anyone. I'm just glad/thankful/grateful to finally be BELIEVED here...in this blog. We shouldn't have to PROVE ourselves to anyone anymore. Sis draws the line at 'EVIL'...she will skirt it by saying that Nmom is 'off' and 'definitely doing some stuff in the devil's playground'....but she doesn't feel like she can label Nmom as EVIL. She knows I was 'hurt'...badly....and believes that I was 'hurt badly'....but seems to accept that it was 'simply' Nmom's 'need' and my 'vulnerability'. WWHHHHAAAAATTTTTT?!!!!!? So....I just send her 'information' on Narcissism......and she can do what she wants with it. Last time she visited the parents (a couple of weeks ago)...she called because she felt 'bad' that she 'did the Right Thing' and told Nmom off....that she was lying...and abusing...and to stop it. Only thing I asked her was if she felt 'right' about standing up for the Truth....and could she stand before God with it? She said "Of course."....so I asked her if she could stand before Nmom and feel 'good'. I haven't heard back from her as yet. Oh..well....
Part of the acceptance of what has happened to us...is to accept that we will not be believed. Those who believe us are few and far between. IT DOES NOT CHANGE THE TRUTH ABOUT WHAT HAPPENED TO US! We are here....more to support each other as VICTIMS...than we are to engage the 'non-victims' (that's a joke....any one in long term contact is 'tainted' by these monsters) as 'support'. It's tiring, frustrating, bothersome...and ultimately BORING to spend a whole lot of time on these Lalas. I love my Sis....but bring something to my Table that is worthy of my time and energy and interest....something lifegiving, profound, eternal....! When she gets around to 'asking the next question'..(that doesn't feel like she is 'leading' me into a ReligiousCorner...) I can refer her to the articles and 'information' I already sent.
Keep on keeping on....this IS a process.....it takes time and energy to 'digest' all this...to connect the dots of our lives. Our lives and our 'training' was designed to keep our dots disconnected. Only the Truth will connect them. God is Good.
The A in JADE stands for argue.
I always have trouble remembering that one myself.
This kind of exchange seems so familiar to me in dynamic. Kind of "sticky" yet empty. You are not really listened to, yet they insist at the very same time that the connection you have is "good" and "strong". I used to have nightmares where I'd talk and no words came out of my mouth, or in the ones where I could talk - the people around me seemed literally deaf as if I wasn't making a sound when I was.
In my experience, if they ever were good, most relationships in and around N's tend to degrade over time, depending of course on the choices people make. What I've experienced is that most relationships end up pretty superficial but use a lot of subtle emotional blackmail to continually define the relationships as very close in order to stay enmeshed, even long after they've lost the basic elements of care, interest, and even just genuine curiosity about one another. Many NF members very strongly want the idea of "closeness" and usually lots of access, but all while scrupulously avoiding any real emotional intimacy that you offer concerning the reality of your life, well, and often reality in general too.
dear Sojourner Kate
Although you asked for Anna's opinion I would like to be so free to give you my comment on your sisters mail. This is only my opinion and most of it is formed due to the fact that my (older and only) sister portraits the same behaviour as yours is doing.
Like was mentioned by someone else on this subject, the fact that your sister talks about the inspiration she had, puts her right at the beginning on a higher level than she thinks you are. This points out directly where the two of you are: she up there, you down there. The big words as dignity, privacy and integrity are here to make a point. HER point. She positions the both of you in the scene that was always there, she the person who indicates where justice and rightness is and you the humble listener and follower. the dummy who is always misunderstanding al her good intentions. It's just the normal MN pattern. She puts you there where you belong (in her opinion) so she can (ab)use you in the way it was always done and to loose the trust in yourself and to believe the B.....T that she says.
The whole letter is about one person, your sister. There is not one line, word about compassion, understanding. This is all about her.
" do not think it is any coincidence that you were praying about your life and health etc and then you were lead by God to make things "right" with Mom."
give me the creeps and I think this letter is full of megalomania. Just hear her greatness in "Now, I am not saying that we are better than anyone else, "
oh yes, you better believe it, she is saying that she is better than others. Bet you! Her whole letter is full with indications how great she is.
An other thing what I think is very important to notice is the fact how she uses the word "WE". I am so sure that this doesn't mean the "WE" all the ACON's feel "WE" means. This is the "WE" that is (ab)used by MN's in case there is a need to impose the feeling on us that we, ACON's, are understood. But the ACON's are fooled and tricked and misguided by this, because it means, depending on the context or "YOU" or "I''.
This letter is a way to keep you 'on track'. The way of her talking/writing is one that gives me the feeling of repulsion, but since there is no bad mouthing or other explicit misbehaviour, you wonder what is wrong with you. Why does this letter doesn't feel well as the words seems to indicate?
There is nothing wrong with you! This letter is one big theatre piece of manipulation, and it would deserve an Oscar if the script wasn't that bad (LOL). She is preying on you, just like your mom. Don't replace one abuser with the other.
"Unfortunately being a God pleaser means doing what may be uncomfortable to us": translation: I, your sister, use the word of God, to tell you how you must live, and although this way of living sucks for you, it is very comfortable to me if you remain the punching bag.
"But ultimately, by us setting an example of a healthy relationship and requiring that she participate in healthy interaction and not allow her to get by with her unhealthy, destructive habits I think we not only save ourselves from grief but we help her too." translation: If you remain the one that opposes Mom, I can save myself because Mom will abuse you and I will not be the target.
These words are meant to keep you in your place, as the punching bag.
"So, my dear sister, let's continue to support each other in our efforts to do what is right,...." translation: so look you stupid b***h just do what you are usefull for to me, be a punching bag.
Also by this sentence she comes down from her throne, in this patronizing way, (yack), after her lecture to you and she is sending you on your mission to remain the punching bag. And hell, she is soooooo jealous of you.
"..... but know that I am supporting you in thoughts and prayers as you endeavor to do what is right with Mom." See you are going ALONE, and she is watching how you will suffer? This is so obvious!!!!!
This is one great set up to keep you being abused. Please don't fall in to it! My sister did exactly the same shit with me for so many years, and it was always a set up and you feel so betrayed. And I bet you know on the feeling level what I mean. SO RUN, GIRL, RUN!!
It looks like a pep talk, but it IS NOT!
Her words look like they adhere your words, but she is setting up the next trap.
Stay on your own track, don't ride her train!
You have my support. Hope this helps!
Thank you for the big dose of truth, fellow N-busters. Your words have been a lifeline for me to grab on to. I need to go NC with both my sister and my MN mother. I have been in temporary NC for the last three months but attempted to see if NM and sister would honor my boundaries. Just the few emails I've received have had a toxic effect on my physical and emotional self and have been a huge reminder that they will never change.
I should have know better with my sister. It's the same pattern over and over with her. She emails me for help because NM is driving her crazy. Somewhere about 2-3 emails later, she switches into religious platitudes mode or becomes defensive of NM and attacks me.
She is my only sibling. I am the older sister and took the brunt of the abuse. Several years ago my sister betrayed me by drawing me into her confidence regarding our F sexually abusing me. She told me that she had similar memories. This situation turned into my own personal 9/11 after my sister told NM about it all and then recanted. The entire family turned on me and told me I had false memory syndrome, was mentally ill, and trying to tear the family apart.
My sister has set up multiple scenarios like this in the past. I've had periods of NC with her when this occurs but haven't been strong enough to do it permanently.
I feel really stupid that my need for an ally made me take the bait again. I have no doubt that played out to it's conclusion, this situation would end up in the same dramatic way as the past ones...with all of them turning on me and attempting to tear me to pieces.
I'm going NC with all of them and will concentrate on healing and getting my life back.
Thank you again for listening and responding with truth and grace.
Thank you so much for your comments on my sister's email. Your insights are profound. Your response and the other N-busting responses that I have received have helped me to understand why I was feeling so angry and invalidated.
The women on the forum for daughters of NMs also came through for me once I had given a bit of back story and put the email in context.
Relief is flooding through me after realizing that I must go NC in order to stay sane. I can feel God's presence again. When I have contact with my FOO I just go into this whole different realm where up in down, black is white, and confusion reigns. I can't even visit that place any more.
My sister can polish her halo without using me as an audience.
Christian Ns (I don't know --mutually exclusive states of being?).
Pretty scary bunch.
I'm not taking a position either way of whether or not an N can be saved. That's not in my dominion, and personnally I think it's a bit arrogant to say this one is going to hell, this one is not. That's God's dominion alone.
And I'm grateful for that!!
But they are scary. They can really give you a peek into the human condition. The "Christian" N READS God's word! And yet we see how it DOES NOT pierce and separate soul from spirit. They DO NOT GET CONVICTED! They can recite the word, they can tell you how it applies to YOU, they can act wonderfully in front of other Christians -- but there is NO applying it to themselves. They are not convicted in their own hearts.
Hardened hearts?? Is the Spirit there but quenched? Or not there at all? At the end of times there will be MANY who say "But didn't we do this and that in your name?"
And Jesus WILL say "Depart from Me. I NEVER KNEW you."
As I said, I have no clue as to whom specifically that verse refers to. Maybe some Ns will repent. Maybe not. I just know there are some people who really do things in the name of Jesus and He clearly stated He does not, has not, and will not acknowledge them as His own.
The minions? They can't THINK. They are tossed and turned by every wave of (N) doctrine that come along. My own SIL and BIL did acknowledge some things they did were wrong -- UNTIL FIL gave them an excuse. Then, presto!, they had a change of heart!
My BIL and his wife stayed at our home several times, he was best man at our wedding, and he vacationed with us. He SOBBED when DH was dying. Then, a month later, he claims he didn't even know his brother -- because his daddy said so! Wiped out past history like it never existed!
My SIL stayed at my home several times, was invited on a vacation with us. My DH, LITERALLY on his death bed, sent me to Macy's to get her a wedding shower gift. A week after he died? Presto!! NONE of that ever happened. WIPED OUT HISTORY! Daddy said so.
My FIL belongs to the Knights of Columbus, takes a widow food shopping, and prays. He also takes food from his own grandchildren and doesn't care if they go hungry. This has been pointed out to him, and HE IS NOT CONVICTED! And then he causes division among brothers (and sisters) and leads them astray.
And the minions are blind. Absolutely blind. After FIL pulled his little speech at DH's funeral, recounting a prank he had pulled, FIL justified it by saying "Well, I raised 5 kids. It was hard to come up with a story about him alone." And the minions nodded their agreement.
The fact that my parents raised 6 kids and all have spouses and they have 11 grandchildren and STILL told a wonderful story about my DH ESCAPED THE MINIONS' notice!
Blind. Hardened hearts. Tossed to and fro.
Look at your "Christian" N and the minions. Does this not apply to them to? Of whom was Jesus speaking? The great evil dictators in the world? Yes. The Wannabee Dictators of the World? I'm inclined to say yes.
God's Word applies across the board.
My N-enabler sister and I engaged in the exact same email exchange a few years ago, and I am constantly amazed by how all our Nfamilies are generically, similarly awful in precisely the same ways. I think it's especially funny because narcissists think they are so special and unique and better than every other family that ever lived. I have a question for you all - when you were growing up in your Nfamilies, did you have one parent, (in my case, the N-enabler mom) constantly go on and on about how "unusually close" your family is ? I listened to that mythological crap constantly while growing up. Then in my mid-twenties, my violently abusive Nfather finally sought some sort of psychotherapy because, as my mom tearfully told my sis and I, "he was so depressed he was thinking of committing suicide" (I was thinking as she said this, GOOD - LET HIM) - anyway, a few months later she told us he was now on some anti-anxiety meds and his therapist said he was doing great due to the support of his UNUSALLY CLOSE FAMILY. WTF ?? I'd love to hear some wisdom on this, because my sis's kids spout this same crap now. Or is this part of the "loyalty above all" Mob Family dynamic?
"I am constantly amazed by how all our Nfamilies are generically, similarly awful in precisely the same ways. I think it's especially funny because narcissists think they are so special and unique and better than every other family that ever lived. I have a question for you all - when you were growing up in your Nfamilies, did you have one parent, (in my case, the N-enabler mom) constantly go on and on about how "unusually close" your family is ?"
Our NF was constantly mythologized as unusually close, obviously superior, and chillingly... "FUN". NF gatherings were invariably used to stage and coerce participation in "fun" pictures, which the NM would then show all her friends as she boasted about our apparently endless good times, and yes - unusual closeness. When the NM moved on to a very hot place [no, not Miami!], we had a small funeral gathering and it was basically one of the first times I had been around what had been her then current set of friends. At some point one of them made a bit of an icy comment to me, clearly she felt I didn't look sad enough for the occasion. She said she guessed it would hit me later. I thought to myself "Lady, don't hold your breath!! " It dawned on me then that this was because of the massive facade my NM had pulled off to others too, not just us. I realized this woman had bought it all, hook, line and sinker... and why shouldn't she? Who would guess that your "good friend" had busily worked for years behind the scenes to continually present "evidence" of an entirely faked fantasy world? WTF!! we had more in common with a hostage situation then with a happy family!!
Amen Anna. well said and very true, every word of it.
Anon said: "we had more in common with a hostage situation then with a happy family!!"
Hostage situation - that is EXACTLY IT ! Anna had a great post on that awhile back. My enablerMom used to go on about how "perfectly behaved" my sister and I always were until finally one of us said "Of course we were - we were scared to death !"
I think the best way to view narcissists (and also in a nutshell why NC is the way to go) is that the narcissist has an unshakable belief that The World and all her inhabitants are here to ensure the comfort, convenience, health, happiness, and well-being of the N.
The N reads the bible or whatever other useful reference they can use to bludgeon their family, with an eye to using what it says to bolster their view of the world and what it owes them.
Thanks for this post.
I spent so many years being "simple". I finally left and the simple continued to try to get me to go back as a way of saving the ex.
Meanwhile, they excused all of his sin...again as a way to "save" him.
I cut contact with him...and them. For a while, I felt guilty. I no longer do.
"constantly go on and on about how "unusually close" your family is ?"
Ah, hahaha... I have to laugh, they are all alike! We are getting so on to them!
My NSIL freak, loves to say the word *family* in the most sickening sweet, disgusting way, over and over again and emphasizing how close they all are, at gatherings or even during simple conversations. Once her non-n sister said "what do you think we are, the Kennedy's?" ahhahaha
But get her alone with me and she refers to her aunts as "only" sister-in-laws, bad mouths her older NC sister and once when I was filling out a job application I said I couldn't put her as a referral because she was a relative ... she said twice "reeeally, you think that's a relative?"
It's all a show. Now my H of 26 yrs makes a big deal and laughs whenever we talk about people who are *just* SIL's like me.
I guess since she just marries for security (says that's the most important thing in life to her) and plenty of money... husbands and wives don't count as family, even to each other. Guess the cats out of the bag on how she feels about her relationship, oops. Only siblings count with her. As long as they can give lip service to the idea of family... it doesn't have to be true. Utterly stupid... and so dishonest. What an empty shell. It'd almost be sad if it wasn't a CHOICE of theirs! Oh, and if you have something notable about your family to say ... the jealously is unreal!
No contact for me since Thanksgiving ... I've deleted 3 of her phone messages w/out listening to them (god, that feels good)... so I do believe she has gotten the message! :) And knows that I have every right to be incensed at her for her covert hideous behavior towards my g-daughter ... I just drew the line and she knows she's crossed it. So she's risking any further exposure by trying to talk to me. If she has something urgent to say ... she can call my H. They really are aware of their actions. Sick bastards.
It really feels good to laugh at the pathetic nature of their personality... from a distance.
Oh, and they really don't know anything about their family members, really. Probably because everyone keeps a distance, they aren't really listening and have no frame of reality and don't really interact honestly with others. I can't tell you how many times I have corrected her about her brother or general facts of stories! And it's the same old worn out stories. Oh this is just endless!
end of rant
In response to your "unusually close family" question, my answer is oh yes.
My N-mother loved to emphasis the importance of FAMILY (uppercase not lowercase). It wasn't the biological significance of family that she found worthwhile. It was her justification for control.
Because we're FAMILY, it's perfectly reasonable for my mother to call me five times in a day, demand (not ask) to know what I'm doing with who, and to then express her disapproval.
No contact is the best. Avoid the craziness.
ROFLOL!! YES!!! DH's family EMPHASIS how close they are!! It's a JOKE! They barely speak to one another! And the backstabbing between them is disgusting.
One SIL slipped one time. The night she called to tear apart my DH, a week after he died, I lit into her when she was done. Then she admitted that her family likes to pretent they're close, but they aren't. And as quickly as the chink in her armor was exposed she quickly hid it again. She knows. But there's that old loyalty thing -- even though I think she's been terribly neglected by her "FAMILY." She's loyal.
And the other SIL? LOL LOL She's mad I cut them off and this is copied and pasted from one of her emails:
I have lost my brother, I will never have three brothers ever again.
Ummm....how many husbands did she think I was juggling at one time???
Forgive me if this has already been said but ... God can only save those people who want to be saved. He cannot force it upon anyone, we were all created with free will. It has been my personal experience that the narcissists in my life clearly do not want anything to change. They both enjoy the drama they create and are not happy unless there is chaos.
It's been argued that I have an obligation to set an example for my family. I have no such obligation. Even IF I assumed such an obligation it would serve no point as a narcissist by definition would not acknowledge it. What I DO have an obligation to is my own health and well-being. Anyone who claims any differently has no idea what they are talking about.
Anna, You recently got slammed on a forum that I am a part of and it's really bothering me.
I think your blog is a light in a dark place. I spoke up for you on that thread but I don't feel that I was sufficiently strong about it.
That particular forum is in bad shape right now due to some hurtful posts. A lot of the posters are jumping on each other and you showed up in the midst of that situation.
It doesn't excuse the vitriol that was directed at you in the slightest but it might help you to understand the back story.
I know that you are a strong person and that you are capable of letting stuff like this roll off your back. I want to learn to be like this.
I recommend your blog to people all the time. Thank you for your strength. People don't understand that you are directing your anger at something worthy of anger...evil.
You recently got slammed on a forum that I am a part of and it's really bothering me.
It's really bothering me too.
Thank you very much for your kind words there and here. I also appreciate the bit of back story you've just given. As for it rolling off...well, my calm was damaged but I decided to just apologize and shove off as requested. The viciousness of the attack was out of proportion and is a red flag. Not a healthy group.
Again, I appreciate your comment here more than I can say.
The viciousness of the attack was out of proportion and is a red flag. Not a healthy group.
I am not at all privvy to what this was about. I don't go on the other blogs. Yours is a treasure to me, so I don't need any others.
So, only responding to what I just read here--it goes back to the whole thing about wanting to live in TRUTH, or being content to live in DENIAL, & remain stuck.
I for one am very happy to GROW in my recovery, to hang around the healthy eagles, rather than the feeble turkeys who are content in their Bullshit!
Even when our calm is shaken by viscious attacks, we can HANDLE it now. And just walk away. Some people just don't really want to recover. The truth always manages to prevail eventually. Who has time for turkeys? Leave them to each other....
I just found out from my "only"
sister that she had received a phone call from one of the enabling sibs (of the 13)that ended up lasting a VERY long time, & in which my sis finally was able to speak a lot of TRUTH to this person, one on one. (Though she & I have gone NC with the whole rotten bunch of them). Apparently this enabler ended up doing a lot of SOBBING when she finally realized some of the EVIL she had been caught up in the momentum of.
She actually said, "None of us KNOW anything. And we all assume the WORST. And I've been part of it!" Whch of course my Darling sis said "Yes, you're right. And Yes, you have." This enabler was DESPERATELY trying to enlist my DS in a way to mend it. Yet she was still VERY MUCH afraid of crossing THE MOB FAMILY!! She wanted to find a way to make it happen, WITHOUT HER becoming THEIR PREY!She didn't say those words, it was apparent by her FEAR in her knowing she couldn't deny to herself the TRUTH that was revealing itself to her, & her part in it. BOO HOO HOO, I say.
YOU did it. Now YOU figure out how to undo it. But DON'T be looking at the PERSECUTED ones, us, to make it better for you. Just cause you figured out that you've been an evil bitch, along with the rest of them.
Just like Sojourner Kates sister.
This enabler spouted crap like though she doesn't want us to be in each others' lives, she still "loves" us as a sibling. If Katrina called her & said my DH was in the hospital & I needed her to come across the country & stay with my children for a week--she'd BE THERE in a skinny minute.
But in the meantime--it's OK to be part of a lynch mob AGAINST ME??!!! Are these monsters for real??!!!
She actually even used the word
"Satanic" on this phone call, in describing the witch hunt behaviour they've had against me, & my DS by ASSOCIATION with me.
Wow. All I can do is shake my head.
THAT'S supposed to be LOVE??!!
Just like the other comments earler today. Sick sense of loyalty. If I needed someone to stay with my children for a week in an emergency---it sure wouldn't be THEM I'd call!!!!
Oh Wow, Anna!
My curiosity got the better of me & I searched out that other blog.
Are those people for fucking real?
It was just like being back at a mob family gathering, before realizing that they could be talking about me in a group, but if I walked in on it & threw in my 2 cents about myself & what they were saying, I'd be looked at condescendingly, & the eyes would start rolling at each other. Since I WASN'T ALLOWED to join the conversation ABOUT me. Duh!
Only in the case of this blog, they were all doing their little snickering & cheering each other on behind the cowardly anonymous keyboard. Wow. Real mature.
Yet another room I won't be entering a second time!
Don't lower yourself to add to their conversation. Their loss. They're just so obviously TOTALLY JEALOUS OF YOU!!
No matter how much they contend that NOT to be the case.
I sent my sister a short email saying that I needed to bring our dialogue to a close and that I did not feel validated and that in the end she always sides with the abusers and betrays me. You can imagine how well that went over. The email I got back is rather unbelievable...full of more ravings about how holy she is and how she is going no contact with me. At this point, that feels like a gift. She can think it's her idea.
Has anyone else experienced that these type of families start to self destruct over the smallest of things? I just tried to set some boundaries with N-mom, not assassinate her! Now my sister is dragging my dad into it and since there's a family birthday party coming up I'm sure that will turn into a mud slinging fest as well.
I keep saying to DH "What did I DO?" You are absolutely right...it's like trying to get out of a mob family. I used a pizza analogy to another friend today...I feel like if my FOO is a pizza that I just tried to take out a tiny slice...just to put it on another plate. And the whole pizza exploded. I have to laugh because I'm out of tears. I so need to get to the place where I have no more tears left for people who have abused me.
Thank God for you guys!
Yes,we were scared to death !"
my mother prides herself in how well behaved i was as a child because of course the great parent she was,she uses this to put down my and my husbands parenting skills.
of course I was terrified of her.
I had posted a while back about building your house on rock, not sand.
And now I see my ILs' homes falling apart -- financially, maritally, psychologically.
One SIL I really believe could be a decent human being, but the evil is contagious. She tries so hard to get daddy's approval, and she never does (I think they've all spit on her, but she won't admit it), and she is in full self-destruct mode. Drinks to excess, is a major people-pleaser (which conflicts her when she has to choose between pleasing daddy and doing the right thing), and definitely missed all the red flags before her marriage.
The reap what they sow. And their houses fall. Don't let their houses fall on you!
Just had a thought.
You know what's amazing? How many Christians are here!
The debate over whether or not an N can be/will be saved is too big for me.
The fact is, the abused victims here are the ones that GOD reached out to! Wow! Some of you have N fathers. You could have said "God is my FATHER? Thanks but no thanks. Got one of THOSE already!"
He DOES bind up the wounds of the broken hearted. He DOES deliver out of the hands of the wicked. He DOES send His Spirit by which we call Him Abba, Father. I can guarentee you, He does hear the prayers of the widow and fatherless and takes up their cause.
Let not your hearts be troubled -- when you have your doubts and the storms come remember it is YOU that God extended His grace and love and peace. Just read all the Christians' posts here!
God is not slow to fulfill His promises.
Peace to all of you. Your strength amazes me -- it is a gift from God.
Sojourner Kate and Anon 5 feb 09.01 PM,
My experience is that when you start to indicate that you want NC, the contact from the MN's just increases. At that point you have to stay foot if this is really what you want.
At breaking point my NSis told me she loved me soooo much and cared soooo much for me and helped me soooo much; I told her she was never there for me, she didn't give a d... Her answer was: "If that's the way you feel we better go NC." I told her that it was a great idea and asked her to please never call again. And I said :"bye", hung up the phone.
The funny thing is that she did NOT want NC, it was just plain extortion! They can't without their NC-supply. They can't without their scapegoat.
Since my NMom and NSis knew they f.... up, they tried truly everything. Started with letters alternating attacks with loving content, guilt trips with missing you so much. You name it, you get it. They will involve everyone they can lay their hands on to get to you (your children, your boss, your relatives, your friends). And if they can not get to you, they will start to make you a criminal throughout your and their world. Until they finally whipe you out of their lives. And then you finally have peace.
I think, when you start NC, it is crucial to make very clear you want NC. Do not make it readable between the lines. Just say plain what it is: NC. That it is YOUR choice and the reason why you want it (sort out your life, etc), Do not attack anyone, just say what YOU need: NC and you will contact them e.g. after 2 years if you want to reestablish it.
I answerd every mail or call from them, but with one message: I DO NOT want contact (I did not answer straight away, after some days :-) ) and after almost 2 years of keeping my (long) breath I told them that if they would not respect my wishes I would go contact FOR EVER with the person who doesn't respect my wishes. All my mails or letters to them were respectfull and to the point, no emotions present. That's also why I did not answer right a way.
They will cross that line you draw for sure but it gives you also the possibility to cut the contact forever, or renew the NC for an other 2 years e.g.
Since 9 months I have real peace/NC and it's so healing.
If you also want to break the contact with your Mom and Dad you can use the upcoming birthday. Send the person who has his birthday a card, wishing a great day but that you can not come e.g. since you need some time and space to sort some things out, especially while you are NC with NSis. Do not appologize
You can decide how much time you need to sort things out, they are not the ones who decide that!
An example of things I wrote is: Thanks for your concern about my well being. I have to do this alone, so please give me that possibility. I will contact you as soon as I can, but not before that. Love you. I hope I can contact you in e.g. 2011.
When they get upset with you, write them that this is about YOU and not about THEM, so they never have a possibility to attack you about your behaviour towards them. Do not enter any discussion, not in words not on paper. The less you say the better it is.
In the way I proceeded I kept my dignity and I am very thankfull that I had a great friend, she pulled me through all the suffering. It's very hard to do it, it takes a long breath, but it's so worthwhile.
Good luck to you both, hope this is of any help. This was the way I took.
First time I've posted. But through reading this wonderful blog and all your comments I've been no contact for over a year with a large MNfamily.
Grew up with the whole shebang..sexual abuse, emotional abuse, physical abuse, you name it. Got out at 13 and didn't return. Until...10 years ago (age 30) when my only niece was born. DH and I took her in for two years because my Nsister wouldn't look after her. Law said I had to give my niece back to NS. Broke our hearts. She wanted to stay.
Here's my dilemma: After a year on NC and sanity finally returning (plus I need to protect my DH), my now 10 year old niece is emailing me wanting to catch up. 99% chance she is being used as a pawn to get access to me, (after all other attempts have failed and there's been every N trick under the sun used) but there is still a slight chance beautiful niece is reaching out for help.
I was 10 (her age) when I realised I needed to get out and when I reached out for help and got it.
NC I understand and believe is the best and only way, but what about the children left behind who love us? My heart is bleeding for my niece. What do I do? I'm a mess. And I'm sure that's exactly what the MN's want. But what if she really needs me? She's just a child and I've been where she is now. Unfortunately nothing legal can be done to protect her. I've checked. I'm swinging from wanting to see and help her one minute to wanting to remain firm in my NC the next.
It's so painful, she's just a child, and she's not even in school with any friends or teachers. No one to mentor her. No one sane for her to turn to. I want and need my NC, but maybe she wants and needs me?
This is so incredibly painful for both DH and I. We love her. I haven't read any posts about the children left behind with NC.
Does anyone have any thoughts?
I'm lost and crying so much. My heart is bleeding for her. To see her I must break NC and risk peace for DH and me.
I don't need to explain to you all how terribly dangerous it is for the MN's to have access into my life, even through a child telling them stuff. But the child, how much danger is she in now? Do I put myself and DH at risk to help her?
Thanks to anyone for any helpful advice. This is hard.
"I just tried to set some boundaries with N-mom, not assassinate her! "
My first thought when reading that was that "setting boundaries" with N's IS assassination to them!
From what I've seen all sorts of things that normal people take in stride in relationships, the N seems to experience as an assault on their identity and a threat to their core. Simple requests or simple refusals or simple feedback that make up the common back and forth in normal relationships, to them is as serious as declaring "war". It is no coincidence that we learned never to do these things!!
In my NF the #1 punishment of all was shunning. [I imagine this is common?] Speaking about people experiencing things differently, they seem clueless that I might experience their "punishment" in a way that could make me realize that life without them in it wasn't bad at all!
I had an ex who did the same thing. He literally began to use words like "uppity" [seriously? a word often used to describe slaves or servants who don't know their place???] with me when I began to expect and demand what I know now to be just merely semi-normal behavior from him. Soon after that, he began a job that involved a lot of traveling, and according to him: to teach me a lesson how much I needed him. It taught me a lesson alright. Only not the one that he planned. It gave me the breathing space to realize that I was happier when he was gone, and to surprisingly observe that I started to tense up when he was coming back. This shocked me at the time. And the look on his face when I told him that was one of the only times I ever saw him truly and deeply stunned. Another was when I packed my bags and moved out a few months later.
Sojourner kate said: "I just tried to set some boundaries with N-mom, not assassinate her! Now my sister is dragging my dad into it and since there's a family birthday party coming up I'm sure that will turn into a mud slinging fest as well."
This is exactly the case. Especially if, up until this point the Nfamily has been successful in getting you to engage. Even if your response to their toxic behavior has been to call them on out on their abuse. The Ns would rather have you applaud and cheer for their wonderful, special dog-and-pony family show, but failing that, as long as you are willing to remain enmeshed, they see any attention as a good thing. Also gives them something to gossip about behind your back so they can feel superior about how unique and close - knit they all are. It is very hard when you first go NC or limited contact, particularily if you have been a reliable source of high-quality narcissistic supply. The N family members try their usual BS, you do not respond, so they push harder and harder. Then they call in reinforcement troops, and then heavy artillery. The pressure can be absolutely unbearable, and I bet most of us here caved in at least once. The most demoralizing thing is when you finally decide you want to cut the Ns from your life entirely, you want to be done right that very second, but NO - it can take years to finally be free. This happened to me about 2 1/2 years ago when I realized that my three best "friends" were not friends at all, but people who hung around me because I am very good at providing USDA grade Prime narcissistic supply. One of them was a colleague at work, and one other actually worked for me, but had been a "friend" for 20 years. I had tried for many years to NOT hire this person, but she joined my organization as part of another team and got stuck under my supervision. Long story. It is not possible to go NC with two of the three "friends" - although I did go to work somewhere else so have little contact with the one former employee who was the poster child for histrionic personality disorder, a sub-category of Narcissism. I remember in late 2006 when I stopped returning phone calls and emails in any sort of timely fashion with the three amigos, and just could not seem to fit socialization with any of them into my busy busy busy schedule; they acted exactly like my Nfamily and MN ex-husband (another long story). I would say it took me a good 16 months to shed these nfriends, one of whom, unfortunately, is still a colleague professionally. This is why, if you can manage it at all, moving away is the best, easiest technique for going NC. First, because if they are all talking about you, so what? You won't KNOW. Secondly, it is much more socially acceptable to not know the daily goings on with your FOO if you are not there as compared to living down the street. Finally, when you move away, all the new people in your community have no history with your FOO and are not likely to ask about them or badger you for not being intimately involved in their miserable pathetic little lives. Moving makes it very difficult for your Nfamily to enlist allies in other parts of your life (job, church, school, kids, etc.) without looking like a bunch of stalkers. Anna, you did exactly that and left no forwarding address - how cool is that. You're a role model for us all. I'd love to do that too, (I want to move to Australia and our kids are all for it, but DH hates snakes - those in the Order Reptila, that is, not the ones in suits). Because of my profession, I am easy to find through public record type stuff so a quick google search is all it would take.
Sojourner kate, you have my deepest sympathy for what your nfamily is doing to you. Their behavior is mean-spirited, petty and vindictive, and the only way to eventually get it to stop is no response. And it takes a really long time. This blog of Anna's has given me so much strength and helped me stay resolute in the short time I have been reading it. It is the best antidote to nfamily mob pressure tactics I have found in my years of reading, learning and searching. Please know you are NOT alone.
One Voice of Truth
Had too many "voices"/ opinions prior to finding your blog. This blog is Truth for me. And encompasses my "support group".
"I don't need to explain to you all how terribly dangerous it is for the MN's to have access into my life, even through a child telling them stuff. But the child, how much danger is she in now? Do I put myself and DH at risk to help her?
Thanks to anyone for any helpful advice. This is hard.
I'd like to second this request for info and thoughts. I often wonder if I should make contact with the NF for the sake of nieces/nephews.
In a less dire but still serious way, I am also in a situation like this with a friend who I just realized recently had some major N qualities. Like most N's, she was pretty clever about hiding it, until just recently a revealing incident directly involving me occurred when it all came clear: patterns became obvious and all sorts of odd things from the past suddenly fell into place.
Long story short, now I also realize why she had also been suddenly and mysteriously insisting that her extremely well behaved, sensitive and intelligent child is a "problem" to her, unlike her other child. I've known both kids well for years, they are both extremely good kids but have different natures. When I asked what was wrong, this otherwise quite articulate woman got very vague and murky but kept insisting he was a "problem" in a way that suggested that she felt personally victimized by something she couldn't really even describe. If I look at the kids not in terms of normal "good" and "bad" - but only in terms of NS providers: it's suddenly very easy to see why this one is a "problem". He is very sensitive and conscientious, ethical, and an independent thinker. Not a natural "joiner". but someone who carefully assesses situations first. A model child really: for anyone but an N.
Normally, I'd go into dump mode with an N friend after realizing she was an N, but I am one of this kid's very favorite adults.
If I stick around though, I can't be just another person who "went along" - because that's no help. But if I fight her, I will be out anyway since I am sure she'd dump me rather then change. Typical N: putting people between a rock and a hard place....
What to do when kids are involved, and you KNOW full well what is going on?
Here's my dilemma: After a year on NC and sanity finally returning (plus I need to protect my DH), my now 10 year old niece is emailing me wanting to catch up. 99% chance she is being used as a pawn to get access to me, (after all other attempts have failed and there's been every N trick under the sun used) but there is still a slight chance beautiful niece is reaching out for help.
If you feel strong enough to wade into the shark pool then reaching out to your niece may be doable. It is very possible she is being used by the Ns to get access to you. I've seen this tactic used many times in my own experience. What this means is that if you reach out to your niece be very, very aware of what you say about yourself and your life. Give her little to no information. If she is a normal ten year old reaching out to you because she needs you she isn't going to be asking you a bunch of questions about your life. Ten year olds just don't think that way. She will be much more interested in talking about her own situation with you. If she is being used you'll figure that out very quickly by her asking questions about you that ten year olds aren't likely to ask. By being TOO interested in your personal business. I think it is possible to reach out to the niece without losing much ground with the no contact. If the niece turns out to just be a cat's paw to get to you then you can gently close off the contact with her. Play it by ear. It is a sad reality that children get caught in the melee when relationships with Ns fizzle. If you think there is a chance this child may be sincerely needing some contact with you, and if you feel like you've gained enough knowledge and strength to be able to better negotiate problems with the Ns then go for it. Reach out. Take small steps, don't throw yourself fully into a full blown contact. Test the water temperature and go from there. Just because you initiate some small contact with a family member doesn't commit you forever to having to be open to the predations of the Ns. You can go completely "dark" again if necessary. Assuage your conscience so you can go forward with assurance that you've done the right thing whatever that ends up being.
All the best.
OOH, Anna, frikkin brilliant post as always!
Totally touches on my fervent statement to many confused Christians I've met as I say..."The Lord hates evil. Guess what? So do I!"
Then I refer them to Romans 1:18-32 in the New Testament to share with them a detailed list of evil actions The Lord condemns. And rightfully so!
My best friend in the whole wide world was and has been distressed by the life-long disturbing actions of his Stepfather.
My beloved friend called me close to year ago seeking knowledge from me as I have spent years accumulating powerful information, research, and data regarding the entire spectrum of personality disorders.
I had told him about your stellar site, Anna, devoted to helping not only Christians but anyone who was being victimized by a MN and also the mountains of books I had read in my determination to emphatically comprehend the wrongness, the evil of some people and WHY they were doing what they were doing.
I am absolutely NO Psychologist in any way, shape or form...but is that a necessary requirement in spreading truth to others I am concerned for? NO, not at all. If I have learned something important, valuable from a reliable source it is my duty to express it to anyone who wishes to know.
That said, my dear friend shared with me past experiences with his stepfather and they paralleled EXACTLY how an N would behave.
My friend decided after years of confusion and emotional pain caused by his stepfather, to confront the man in a logical, rational way, striving to make a connection with the man and putting wrongs to right.
Guess what the stepfather told my friend after this calm, reasonable confrontation?.."I'm sorry you feel that way"...!!!!
Total N lack of responsibility, accountability, right Anna?
I ruefully laughed when my friend told me this expected response from the N stepfather. I told him.."classic N behavior. You did the right thing in confronting him. Now you know the truth, the reality of the situation and I suggest you write him off. Go No contact as soon as possible."
My dearest friend made a wonderful decision by going completely No Contact, physically, mentally, emotionally and spiritually for as long as he lives, from his evil stepfather.
He feels great, relieved to finally have a definitive term to describe his stepfather's twisted word and actions over the years and is living a life free from predators.
I love and respect him deeply and will always be here for him in any capacity he desires. A truly 100% good, decent, loving Christian man.
(ps...sorry this post is so long, but Anna's blog always fires me up and keeps me energized and vigilant. Luv ya, Anna!...haha)
Some years ago I sought counseling for overwhelming feelings of loss, anger and guilt involving my family that my family only served to aggravate. Whenever I tried to talk out the problems I was having with any one of them I was accused of causing problems and trying to break up the family. I was at my wits end, I knew I was under assault but didn't know how or why and that I needed to take care of myself before I did something I might regret. So I found a counselor whom I could talk things out with and he told me that I needed to have no (or as little as possible) contact with those members of my family that were causing me grief. I agreed though I didn't fully understand at the time why.
In the better part of a decade since then I have come to understand why. There can be no redemption for those who do not and refuse to see the error of their ways. And they do suffer and they cause everyone around them to suffer and they blame everyone else for their suffering and the hard truth is that you cannot save them. You can only save yourself from them.
My mom finally disowned me last month after I stood up for myself one too many times (I'm 32 for Christ's sake!) which is a relief because it diffuses the argument blindly parroted by her proxies that she cares. They're silent now as well. I hope that I don't lose my sister because she's a really great person and I love her a lot but she doesn't want to understand how she is used as a human shield by a coward to advocate on our mother's behalf and I will not tolerate being bullied into submission, even through my sister. It hurts but despite our best efforts we can't always save those being held hostage and don't even know it.
And we're all subject to this. There is a fascinating book by Dr. Phillip Zimbardo, The Lucifer Effect: Understanding how good people turn evil, and it's enlightening in ways you may wish it weren't. His main thrust is the idea of systemic evil, of "bad barrels" creating "bad apples" from good ones rather than placing all accountability on just the individual for somehow choosing to be bad which is still the current conventional wisdom that narcissists, themselves, exploit to justify unjust actions on their part. As long as you're a part of the narcissists system (which is likely your life that the narcissist has hijacked and subverted to their needs) then you are subject their influence and control and being used to increase that power at your expense. Cut your losses as painlessly as possible and get out ASAP.
I would like to add that I am not religious but I have no problem with Anna's religious contexts. As with with any powerful tool, religious authority can be used for good or evil. My family is not religious but you don't need the Bible to appeal to traditional authority (i.e. "but she's mom!") which has been used against me. As George Carlin said, "respect should be earned based upon performance." It is not an entitlement. The operative word there is performance. It doesn't matter what they say or what they believe. What they do is fundamental. By their fruits, ye shall know them. =)
I say be selfish (moderation is key, of course). Make new friends, go looking for and be open to new opportunities and enjoy your life. But never forget the devils in your past. They count on you forgetting their evil deeds. No matter how good you feel about yourself always remember that it was in spite of them every tortured step of the way.
In reference to your 5:10:00 AM post:
Oh, sweety, that was incredibly beautiful, inspiring and overflowing with the Holy Spirit moving through you.
I got choked up, I did. And my heart swelled with so much love for all you wonderful people reading, commenting on this blog and those folks out in the world.
Today has been a truly joyous day for me. Nothing special happened. Just...thrilled to be alive, and thrilled to know you beautiful people are alive, healing and happy.
Peace, Love and Joy ad infintium for all....*smile*
(ok...I'm burning up the lovely Anna's cybernet wires today)
At Anon 7:26:00 AM:
You used the phrase.."evil Christians" in a sentence. Those are contradicting words. An oxymoron, if you will.
You either are or you are not...a Christian.
Folks who loudly declare they are Christians, yet are despicable, deplorable, selfish, cruel in words/actions are fundamentally clueless as to the exact nature of Christianity.
They don't get it. They most likely never read Holy Scripture with their hearts and minds receptive and open to the Holy Spirit, HUMBLY seeking guidance, strength and forgiveness from The Creator.
If you are not willing to submit, body-mind-spirit to The Lord, you're still a lost sheep in the wilderness.
Thankyou for your insightful advice Anna. I appreciate it. Reading your blog has given me much strength these past months. Receiving specific advice from you with this current problem gives me even more support.
Two things I must consider very carefully:
“If you feel strong enough to wade into the shark pool then reaching out to your niece may be doable.”
I am not strong enough yet. It’s too soon. I’m grieving my latest miscarriage and my doctor tells me my stress cortisol levels are consistently too high and are a possible contributing factor to the miscarriages. It’s too soon to risk any N contact. Maybe in a couple of months I can go there, but the thought of it right now is too difficult for my recovering body and emotions.
"Take small steps, don't throw yourself fully into a full blown contact. Test the water temperature and go from there."
This is key for DH and me. And something I hadn’t considered.
NS and niece travel around the country constantly (she’s a singer) and are passing through my home town for only two weeks. Hence the urgency I felt for my niece. It’s rare we’re in the same place at the same time. But I can’t allow NS’s time table to push into my need for space now.
Oh wow! Just had an aha moment! Whenever Niece was enmeshed in my life, NS’s timetable was running my own life schedule. (All bow down to the important singer, for her schedule must be adhered to by everyone!! Even her own child can’t get an education because school is too much of a tie down for NS) I was constantly dropping everything to run to the rescue of my niece. Not fair on DH or any of my friends either.
NS’s schedule impacted the lives of all around me through my niece’s suffering and her literally being abandoned by her mother to my care for days, weeks, months or years at a time. Then wrenched away when mothering was convenient for her again. (There is no father in the picture, he ran away overseas years ago. Her abandonment issues are huge and I’m only adding to them I’m sure)
The Evil NS timetable spreads to infect all the good people in my life. Evil really does spread. Sometimes that timetable included running off with some poor woman’s husband. How can she be expected to be a mother while going through the heartache of a married man going back to his wife? Poor little NS, so much heartache for her...GAG. Up I jump, to the rescue again. Not for NS, but for her daughter with no parents around.
"Assuage your conscience so you can go forward with assurance that you've done the right thing whatever that ends up being."
Another key for me and DH. When we went NC, our niece was self harming. Pulling her hair out and cutting herself. She was seeing a child psychiatrist, then we moved town and went NC. Can we really help her? Or will we be dragged into yet more pain and suffering from the evil mob? If my niece’s pain is so close to us again, will I keep miscarrying my own children because of stress? Does it have anything to do with it?
Anyway, your advice is helping me clarify many things that were all muddled up in my head as one big lump. At least now I can begin to untangle some threads and come to a conclusion, rather than just freaking out. Not sure yet what that conclusion will be, but DH and I will work it out. Maybe we just have to live with guilt, or,maybe we risk our peace to try again to help her. (Big problem probably a lot of ACON’s have is the fear that maybe we are as selfish as the MN’s because we leave innocent children behind for our own peace. I know DH and I struggle with that one.)
In any case, your advice helped me see the timing is too soon and I need to resume contact with my niece at a slow pace, rather than face to face straight away. That is one decision I can make today. Slow, not all at once, even though she’s leaving town in a few days there’s no need to rush any contact with her. I’ll wait until she’s gone, then perhaps start up an email dialogue with her, then phone, then organise a visit. Thanks for that pearl of wisdom. I needed to hear that. I feel relieved already with that one decision. The timing is off and I ought to proceed slowly as I strengthen physically and emotionally.
(Sorry it’s all so muddled. I feel stressed and nothing I say or write seems to make sense like it usually would. It feels good to get it out instead of keeping it stuffed down inside.)
Thankyou Anna for your blog, your wisdom, your caring. You are helping so many of us in so many ways. God bless.
I'm very, very sorry to hear of your miscarriage. I can certainly understand why now wouldn't be a good time to reassert contact with your poor niece. The situation sounds complicated, but it certainly sounds like you now have a plan, an idea, as to how to proceed. Please take good care of yourself. You don't need to be sacrificing your own children for the cause of the narcissist. I feel very sad for your niece. Your ability to help her is limited, obviously. I hope for the best for her and for you.
Professions sullied by narcissists: doctors, teachers, nurses, social work, the U.N., motherhood, on and on and on. Anna’s post 2 February, 10.35pm
I would like to add another Dr to the list; the veterinarian. Most of us would probably think well of them, after all they love animals, right! My former vet is a narcissist/psychopath. He lied to me & killed my pet. He lied to the vet board & they let him get away with it, despite the glaring discrepancies. Have since discovered his reputation is not good, particularly among people who do possess a clear mind. He does have supporters though. I know some of them, they are simpletons. I’m steering clear of them.
My assessment of this vet being a psychopath is based on far more than mentioned here, but I will say he revised the history of my pet’s treatment, his whole statement was beyond belief & the smears on me were ridiculous and barely plausible. Finally, this event also revealed the other narcissists/disordered types that were in my life and that’s all another story.
One more thing, have a new pet & a new (real) vet. The difference is so noticeable.
Thank you for caring Anna
(((Hugs))) to you.
I read the Romans verses you posted, and this jumped out - verse 31:
31 Without understanding, covenantbreakers, without natural affection, implacable, unmerciful
WITHOUT NATUAL AFFECTION!
Natural in all nature, in every culture.
Across the globe, regardless of the culture, parents jump up when they hear their baby cry. Parents will walk across fire to get a sick child medical help. They speak in a higher pitch when talking to infants. They smile when they see healthy babies, cry when they see sick ones. Men and woman in love seek to give love to each other. They cry at a death, comfort those left behind.
Mammals care for their pups, kittens, joeys -- whatever. It's NATURAL and INNATE.
And clearly God is saying there are those who are without that natual affection. They are abberations. They are UN-natural.
And listed among other sinners.
It's really disgusting to know there are people who don't give a damn about their child's health or their spouse's joy or who need to "Steal the show."
THey're disgusting examples of humankind. Stay away from them. They are just not normal.
"NC I understand and believe is the best and only way, but what about the children left behind who love us? My heart is bleeding for my niece. What do I do? I'm a mess. And I'm sure that's exactly what the MN's want. But what if she really needs me? She's just a child and I've been where she is now. Unfortunately nothing legal can be done to protect her. I've checked. I'm swinging from wanting to see and help her one minute to wanting to remain firm in my NC the next."
I wholheartedly agree with Anna; proceed on your timetable, when you are physically and emotionally ready to wade through the N-crapola.
That having been said, I must confess that my Aunt was a lifeline to sanity. She too had gone NC from N-Mom. My Aunt couldn't always be there and I understood that from a young age, but the thought of another person who understood my "situation" was a comfort too. Once I reached a point in my life where I could sneak calls, and later visits, she was always willing to listen and reassure. We knew something was wrong with N-Mom, but didn't know what to call it nor how to stop it. Before my Aunt died she told me that she never changed her home phone number just in case I needed to reach her. I am weeping as I type for every hell my N-Mom put her through. This blog would have been a godsend to her too, but she didn't yet know she had stage 4 lung cancer when we once again reconnected. She fell ill and passed away before I could share this discovery.
My prayers for us all,
Seems to me that your (pious) Sister, and other Christian Enablers of Ns, are babies:
Hebrews 5:12-14 (NAS) (Emphasis mine):
"For though by this time you OUGHT TO BE teachers you have need again for someone TO TEACH YOU the ELEMENTARY PRINCIPLES of the Oracles of God, and you have come to need milk and not solid food. For everyone who partakes only of milk IS NOT ACCUSTOMED to the word of righteouness, for he is an INFANT. But SOLID FOOD is for the MATURE, who because of PRACTICE have their SENSES TRAINED TO DISCERN GOOD AND EVIL.
Whether a MN can be saved or not isn't really the issue. The issue is that a human being is not called to live in continual abuse in order to "save" one. We are not God!
We've been accused of not having "natural affection" because we cut-off my MNstep-daughter and son. We continued to cover them with our insurance until they were of age and paid CS for the boy, but we are the UN-natural ones because they are not welcome in our home or our lives. Of course, we were also the victims of their intense and ongoing slander campaign, too. (LOL) Natural affection gives way to insanity if you try to continue to "agape" (as we were once told) MN children or other family members. By "agape" I guess we were supposed to "forgive and forget" all that they were doing and let them continue to prey about our lives but that is not "agape". Unconditional love is about holding people accountable for their actions, too. Otherwise, you don't really love them. If you let your child shoot you because you were "unconditionally" loving them and allowing them to exercise their choices, then YOU as a parent would be culpable. BTW, I found it very interesting that when MN stepson tried to commit suicide it was his real DAD that he wanted to pray for him and talk to on the phone. Oh there were gallons of tears and promises of getting together when he got out but all of that went right back to the way it was before. No real contrition there at all, no attempts to right the wrongs or set the record straight. Its all back to status quo.
They DO NOT LOVE YOU! No matter what their professions are, if they are assasinating your character behind your back, THEY DO NOT LOVE YOU! Character assasination is really attempted murder! I can't say that strongly enough. And that applies to whatever they are: parent, child, sibling, relative or supposed friend. We supposedly "disowned" his two kids, too. But they actually disowned their own father, sold their relationship to him to the highest bidders and then punished him when he went NC because they were slandering his name all over this country. Now, they are NC with HIM! Amazing how they can twist history!
The ex-wife MN has this quote on her blog site: But He's already made it plain, how to live, what to do, what God is looking for in men and women: Do what is fair and just to your neighbor, be compassionate and loyal in your love, and don't take yourself too seriously. Take God seriously. Micah 6:8 I laughed so hard over that one since I know NO ONE who takes herself more seriously. Everything is about her, revolves around her or she will attempt to steal the attention away to herself.
She's a religious person now after many years of adultery and other things, but has not changed her tactics or behaviors one tiny bit. She's just continuing to use religious verbage to cover up her real nature. But she can easily fool other religious people. People want to believe that someone like her can really change and be saved. The only ones that can't be fooled are those who are truly spiritual because "the Spirit [doesn't] bear witness with" her spirit that she is a child of God. Sooner or later real Christians start to suspect her and then she moves on to other friends.
Regarding "close families": She and the MN daughter are always going on about how close they are as family and of course, FAMILY (her's not their father's) is the only thing that matters because loyalty to family is where its at. MY non-N son is appalled by how they describe his relationship with them as "close" because he has very little to do with any of them. He calls them the "crazy" side of his family. How can that be defined as "close"? Again, it's not about reality with MNs, its about the facade they want to project.
I have an uncle that I am very close to. He's only 13 years older than I so in many ways he is more like my elder brother. Anyway, he's recently been going through counseling due to his upbringing issues and one of the things his counselor told him was that "Christians are the meanest people on earth!" And that is true, if you substitute Religious People for Christian. I know no class of people more delighted to see someone in leadership fall, more ready to condemn or more joyful in contributing to the gossip/slander attack on someone else. However, if they are "Christians" then they are without excuse since they know that what they're doing is evil. Yes, "There will be many in that day who will say unto Me, Lord, Lord but I will say unto them: "Depart from Me ye workers of iniquity, I NEVER KNEW YOU!" " Jesus would not have said that if it were not true.
The bottom line is that, as I believe Kathleen said, real Christians show the true nature and character of Christ. One of they ways that they do that is to NOT spread gossip. In the quote from Hebrews it says they grow up in Christ! Anyone who is constantly demanding attention and slandering others is NOT a Christian, no matter how they "share" the gossip with others. Yes, people can be needy but after a time, they should be growing out of it. Its been my experience that the worst perpetrators of this religious attack are those who claim to have been Christians for many years.
You will find that most of the religious Ns are attracted to large churches where there is little accountability. [They are especially attracted to "seeker friendly" churches because most of them have taken Jesus admonition about "judging" completely out of context and there is little or no accountability in them.] They can maneuver there much easier. Even if they become involved in small groups, they are not truly involved. Its all superficial and usually, they try to be the leader or are extremely vocal in those groups. Again, they are simply proving their superiority over everyone else and hoping to garner attention and find more sources to violate/manipulate for their supply.
Here is the first 8 verses from 2 Timothy, a direct quote from NIV:
2 Timothy 3
Godlessness in the Last Days
But mark this: There will be terrible times in the last days. People will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boastful, proud, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy, without love, unforgiving, slanderous, without self-control, brutal, not lovers of the good, treacherous, rash, conceited, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God— having a form of godliness but denying its power. Have nothing to do with them. They are the kind who worm their way into homes and gain control over weak-willed women, who are loaded down with sins and are swayed by all kinds of evil desires, always learning but never able to acknowledge the truth. Just as Jannes and Jambres opposed Moses, so also these men (or women) oppose the truth—men of depraved minds, who, as far as the faith is concerned, are rejected. But they will not get very far because, as in the case of those men, their folly will be clear to everyone.
There are NO better verses for describing a MN and so, even if you are not familiar with all the aspects of Narcissism, any truly learned Christian should still be able to recognize them. If they want to.
BTW, sorry to be so long winded. I've had to deal with some recently at church, so my dander is up today.! :-)
The fact that Ns slander those who are NC is very telling.
Ns are the ones thinking of you more than you think of them them.
It'd be nice if they go NC on you first, eh?
True, it is very telling. Interestingly, they "don't care" about us but they are constantly attacking our son with complants and so on. Also, DH is no longer their father. The enabling stepfather is. I think that is supposed to "hurt" DH but he finds it amusing. They say these things to other people because they know it will get back to us. Another attempt to punish him that is not only expected but to be desired!!!
Excellent post, Writer in WA!
I don't think it was long-winded at all. We all have many interesting, and maybe sordid experiences to share regarding faux Christians
I believe that the most vocal people who vehemently proclaim to be Christians, yet do not in any way STRIVE to be Christ-like in living a righteous life are probably personality disordered individuals.
Maybe that's an unfair blanket statement, but I've seen them in action many times and they meet the behavior/personality criteria traits listed for PDIs.
It is so disappointing to meet a person who seems to sincerely claim to be a spiritual Christian, yet by spending more time with this person, wanting to get to know them, wanting to share my spiritual journey/revelations with them and then....BAM! The mask not only slips but falls off completely revealing more of a monster than a humble, loving, caring, decent, kind human being.
It is heartbreaking for me, I confess. I will never completely understand the blasphemy perpetrated by such people, the perverting, distorting of Sacred Scripture and a Sacred belief for countless folks, for their own selfish ego trips.
btw--I realize I'm not perfect. I'm addled with flaws, quirks and foibles. But I am determined to NOT stray from the path of light, the path of righteousness as written in The Word. I'm a sinner, no doubt, and when I recognize I've sinned against another, I'm on my knees pleading with The Lord for forgiveness. And, of course, giving a sincere, genuine apology to the person I have hurt, offended, sinned against.
I don't ask for them to forgive me, only to accept my apology for wrongfully harming them. They will forgive me or not whenever they decide. Not up to me.
"The fact that Ns slander those who are NC is very telling."
Isn't it? Guily people always talk the loudest!
Funny thing (sad acctually - a grown man) about one my Ns enablers- acctually wrote me a letter after NC and in it said he didn't think the N was lying that she was just streching the truth a little.
Bending the hell out of it is more like it. Blatently making things up.
Wow, from a grown man, a PASTOR, so called "father" and he is college educated no less! and we don't know that "lying" and "streching the truth" are the same bleeping thing! He never let me get away with that growing up but I guess when you are an adult you can lie, steal, and slander all you want. I'm so glad to be out of the wanna be supranos family!
Thanks Kimberly for the validation but really the thanks should go to Anna for providing a safe, validating atmosphere to vent in. :-)
I've recently been accused of being cold and callous toward people that I find offensive. I have to say that is true to a certain extent. After nine years of h-e-double toothpicks from the MNs in my husband's ex-family I'm very unmoved by demanding, manipulative Ns. I was raised in the ministry by religiously addicted parents; my mother was a MN. And my husband is a Pastor. That being the case, I've seen more than my fair share of MNs in a religious environment so I'm somewhat intolerant, to put it mildly.
Recently, I had a woman jump all over me right before service, in the sanctuary no less, so that others could hear her and she proceeded to yell at me that I had twice ignored her but spoke to other people when I came in for Sunday a.m. services. The simple truth is that I very seldom talk to people before the service. I am on the worship team and try to keep myself focused in prayer for the service but I socialize afterwards. She is one of those who is very shallow, just as phoney as three dollar bill, but tries to come off as super spiritual. Anyway, I apologized and told her that I certainly had not intentionally ignored her. But, although she claimed that she had already cleansed herself from resentment by praying about it, she continued to berate me and started into verbal abuse and name calling. At that point I simply walked away from her. I will not stand around while someone attacks me, he/she can talk to my behind!
What she has repeatedly tried to do is impress me with her spirituality but it has failed entirely. For example, for the Ladies group I had each person write down and put into an envelope a prayer request that they really wanted to see God address this year of 2009. The idea is to pray over the requests and when one is answered, remove it from the basket. I hope to see many people come to realize that God does answer prayers by seeing how many remain by the end of the year. Madam Spiritual wouldn't do that and told me after the meeting that God always answers her prayers so fast she barely has time to ask for something. Needless to say, I just looked at her and said: "Well if you don't want to, you don't have to write one down." Such absolute baloney never flies very well with me.
Anyway, when the attempts to impress me didn't work and make her my best friend, she thought she could demand attention and relationship by causing a scene. That REALLY won't work with me. So she made a spectacle of herself and I walked away from her to greet visitors.
The next morning was Ladies meeting and she acted like nothing had happened and tried to corner me several times. I suppose that she imagined having straightened me out, I would be falling all over myself to stroke her ego. Each time she approached me I walked into the area where the other ladies were because I had NO intention of allowing her to act out without witnesses.
This past Sunday we were told by another person that she had been ranting to that she felt we didn't appreciate her and all she's done for the church. The reason for that? She'd asked me to sort through some boxes of garbage that she'd donated to the church and let her know if we didn't want any of it. Typical MN set-up. I asked one of the board members to go through it with me and it was literally junk (broken, corroded, dirty and worthless garbage) so the Board member gave it all back to her. [I can never understand why people feel that giving their garbage to the church is somehow righteous.] So she ranted to someone else after service on Sunday and said she is leaving the church. We didn't appreciate what she'd done for the church! The truth is that she made a fool of herself and everyone who saw and heard her, was distancing themselves from her because of it. If she'd apologized it would have been an entirely different situation but she is not "Christian" enough to do that. I will not call her nor make any attempt to placate her.
So yeah, I am pretty callous when it comes to Ns demands. I simply don't care. Nor will I validate their demands, being very well aware that once you start accommodating them it is always an endless and thankless job.
Here's a really interesting situation...
We live in Melbourne, Australia which is currently experiencing the worst bush fires in its history. We used to live about 15 minutes by car from the area which was hit the worst with the firestorm. Hundreds of people have died, I am sure you have all heard the stories.
We moved about six months ago, I won't say where to, but not far from where we used to live. We didn't tell our families (both N-infected) our new address, changed our mobile numbers, landlines silent etc.
Today I hear from my MIL on our email address, which we left the same for business reasons, begging us to tell them where we are, because they are apparently worried to death about us.
They have known that email address for the last three years, and have not bothered to contact us to ask us how we are, how the kids are etc, and now all of a sudden they want to know whether we are dead or alive?
Only to satisfy their own curiosity I am sure. For a second I was tempted to put them out of their misery, but then I figured, why? If they were a normal caring family, we wouldn't have had to go no contact in the first place.
And they aren't really suffering through not knowing, its only their burning curiosity that they are suffering from. As soon as they know we are alive, it will be business as usual, abuse, rejection and generally ignoring us until they feel like an 'update'.
It feels callous and uncaring to let them continue to 'wring their hands' if that is what they are doing, but I have to keep reminding myself that they aren't really normal people, they are just wanting information they can pass around to everyone else to puff themselves up.
The fires are by no means over by the way, so prayers would be appreciated.
One last thought..
It would be reasonable under the circumstances to be 'worried sick' if we were in regular contact and they knew where we were, and showed normal levels of interest and concern.
It is not normal to expect somebody who had already said they will not be contacting you again ever, to suddenly contact because of the serious circumstances.
If that makes sense..
What it means is that they never took us seriously in the first place, and expected that at the first sign of danger, we would come crawling back to 'mommy' in order to reestablish the co-dependence we once had.
Thanks again for your compassion and well wishes Anna.
Thanks for sharing your perspective as the child who seeked and recieved comfort from your Aunt. I am heartened to hear you understood from an early age that she couldn't always be there for you. I am praying that my niece will also have that understanding about me and DH.
When the time comes, I hope to be for her what your aunt was for you.
Sometimes I think maybe my ego is too big and I assume I'm more important to her than I really am, but your experience has made me rethink that. Perhaps it's my intuition that tells me she needs me.
She sure needed me when she was very little. Just to be fed and have a home as well as love.
She always thrived with DH and I. A happy, healthy little girl. Now, she's falling apart. What can we do to make the law makers understand that the biological parents aren't always the best carers for the child?
anyway, I'm ranting. Sorry.
I'm touched by your story JR. And by the love your Aunt had for you. I hope she had a happy life despite the pain inflicted on her by MN's. I'm glad for you that she was there for you.
I know I am alive today because of the kindness of others who saw I needed help as a young child and gave it and protected me from my birth family.
It really is incredible, worse than any horror movie, what the MN's do to innocent lives. Sad to watch how the evil from my parents spread to my siblings who stayed and did not get out early enough.
Their evil does spread. And spread.
Writer in Washington,
Good for you, you shouldn't have a tolorence for these kind of people - espeically in church! Remember the WWJD braclets? Did he ever put up with people like that? No! I can't stand these kind of folks but think about it - in the bible - what some people "demanded" of Jesus Himself! Like the pharises. He didn't put up with it and made them look like the fools they were.
First off, I wish you the best in your situation there and send prayers.
My first impression when reading your situation was to think of how I've seen N's trying to "piggyback" on other's tragedy in order to get special attention/victim status from others fro themselves.
I had a Nfriend suddenly "mysteriously" ignore me while I dealt with the illness and death of a person close to me. Naturally I didn't plan on continuing the friendship with a person so immature, but was literally shocked at what came next:
I found out through someone else that behind my back, she was using MY situation to get sympathy from others... FOR HERSELF!!!!! Saying how "troubling" it all was and so forth, and repeating any details she knew, etc. Right, meanwhile she had totally thrown me under the bus: she didn't just simply withhold support, she withheld reality - she wouldn't even openly acknowledge that I was going through something difficult when I would run into her during that time.
I hope I am wrong, because it sounds so sick under the seriously tragic and ongoing circumstances in your country, but my first impression was that maybe these N's might be looking for the attention of knowing someone involved first hand, or would in some other way use your experience to bring attention to themselves. Or they could also be embarrassed by others asking them for news of you, and want it to save face by showing they have some.
Cool, Meg. I'm glad you're not going to respond to the family N's pretended concern. As with anything else, it is only about them. Never about you, your needs, your safety, your health. Concern? They only fake it.
What a blessing that you are not where the fires are blazing. You jumped out of two fires when you moved! Narcissist hell-fire and blazing brush fires. Take care.
Meg, it could also be that the Ns in your family are thinking this a a good excuse for getting into contact with you again. Or perhaps, they think that enough time has gone by and this present emergency will make you more vulnerable to them. Joanna Ashmun said (in her blog) that she has frequently fallen victim to this sort of thing. She begins thinking that maybe they have changed or maybe they aren't so bad as she thought and she lets them back into her life. Then, once again, whammo!
Its a very hard thing to let go of people that you have tried hard to love for many, many years. Ns somehow seem to know that and think that at some point, time will soften your memories of it all and you will "forgive and forget" it. Or you will just say, "enough" because you don't want to fight anymore. Who can really tell what a disordered mind is thinking?? Just do what your heard tells you in this case and trust your instincts. If you don't want to respond you certainly don't have to do so just to appease their curiousity.
No matter what you decide to do about them, I'm very glad that you are safe and I am praying for those of your countrymen that are suffering during this time.
Writer in WA,
It's not validation...it's appreciation!..haha.
Yes, I'm a cheerleader. Heeping genuine praise upon those who touch and inspire me.
I think Anna can attest to that what with all my many posts gushing all over her!...haha.
I can imagine her reading them, maybe shaking her head (in a humble fashion) but smiling with real joy also.
Her brilliant, logical, no-nonsense approach speaks volumes to me on all levels. More so than any other writer I've read concerning PDIs and also including the very important Christian perspective.
As she has advised and as you are doing, I have 0 tolerance towards those who deliberately try to harass, provoke, bully and prey upon me.
You bet your fluffy booty socks when I am aware of such horrid behavior, my eyes literally shoot out laser beams of fire and I become a force to be reckoned with. (ok, no fire shooting literally from the eyes; figuratively speaking, of course)
I have no fear with confrontation. I do what I must to belay predators from thinking I'm an easy target. Then...I simply walk away with a spring in my step.
We all have The Lord on our side, protecting us as we protect ourselves from the humanoid monsters who patrol our streets.
Anon 10:57 totally nailed it, as sick as it is.
N's either need to save face, & not look like an idiot that doesn't know anything when people ask questions, or they think it's an opportunity to suck you in at your weak point.
We all know they smell blood like a shark. That hunger that needs to be fed.
Feels good to be in control of your own life! To know you don't have to respond, just because they want you to.
That's the past pattern. The dance we used to dance to. When they were shooting at our feet.
God Bless. I prayed for you & your neighbors. May the fires end soon & all be safe!
This website is so "spot on" in all it says! I have tried on and off for years out of guilt to have my malignant narcissist psychopath mother in my life. She has bought all my siblings with money and turned them against me and my family. Caused so much trouble deliberately in my life. Never shown any love or concern for me and her greed for money and power knows no bounds. I now realise I have to protect myself and my family through NO CONTACT with her or my siblings who are her weak underlings. Such a relief to have finally figured out what is wrong with her and not to feel like the "black sheep" anymore for daring to resist the abuse! Thank You!
"Here is what I haven't said. I haven't said that God can't save the narcissist. In fact, I've said the opposite. I have said that God can save the narcissist but with the addendum that He doesn't need YOU to do it! We must have an expiration date on our patience with evil doers."
Amen to that Anna!!! Not only that but, it is impertive to go NO CONTACT with an n, no matter who they are to you in your life, for one simple fact: we need to realize our own narcissistic tendencies in thinking we are the only one who can "save" an n. AND, in fact, we are prohibiting the n from growing themselves by allowing them to continue the behavior in our life.
That loving, kind nature of a Christian is exactly what they are taking advantage of and why they are able to take advantage of so many Christians. That's what evil does.
And finally, another thing: Anyone who reads the bible (not just once, but MANY times) will begin to see emerge two different principalities at play here. There is the world of light that the Christian belongs to; where we are to be and behave differently once we take Christ as Lord & Savior. And then there is a completely dark and opposing (to the light and Christian world/realm) that we are to handle much differently. How you will tell the two apart - even for someone claiming to be a christian who acts this way is in REPENTANCE and if there is marked and permanent change (once they admit accountability to their sins/mistakes) thereafter. There in lies the difference between the two opposing forces that should help you decided on whether or not to go NO CONTACT with the n's in your life.
Anna is right-how we handle pathological n's who do not work and think like we do (from the same set of rules, they have no rules, remember that), is and should be completely different. Nowhere in the bible does the Lord tell us to be a fool, to keep allowing ourselves to be fooled and to let ourswelves taken advantage of continually which the n does ad nauseum), and to do it endlessly and mindlessly. Great post Anna.
Anne and everyone ,
I am glad to have "stumbled" across this site,and this topic,being a Christian,and going NC.It can seem like an unchristian thing to do...and I suppose if it's done with nastiness,it would be unchristian.NC can and should be accomplished without creating a hurtful scene.Telling them like it is will not do anything,except frustrate the NCee. I am new to this,the naming the behaviour and figuring out the cruel behaviors of mothers,husbands,etc..I am not new to the devastation,pain,and destruction of my soul.I am a Christian,and after research, alot of prayer and serious soul searching,I have went NC with my NM.It can be done with a clean conscience.My NC's relationship with God is her responsibility.
Thanks for the intelligent posts,they are very enlightening.
I just recieved a phone call tonight from a family member. After cutting off contact from my N mother about 2 years ago, it seems that she has had a stroke. I also found out that I am apparently being blamed for it, since I have not been talking to her and am told I have caused her so much stress. I'm sure the fact that she weighs over 300 lbs had nothing to do with her physical condition, or her drinking problem. I have to admit that I was not surprised, since before I cut off contact, everything going wrong in the family was being blamed on me. Long story short, I couldn't take it anymore and I started over in a new city. And then I found this blog, which has been such a blessing. I was thinking about a Star Trek (the next genertation) episode, where the ship's counselor (Deanna Troy) encounters another empath. He performs a ritual with her that causes Troy to feel all the bad emotions of the people he has to negotiate with. She starts aging at an accelerated rate and lashing out at everyone, due to the stress of all the negative emotions. The crew is able to undo the ritual, and all the negative emotions that he had been putting on unsuspecting victims all those years is heaped upon him. He ages and dies a quick and painful death, unprepared for the intensity of the meanness and hatred that he had allowed others to experience for his negotiations. I wonder if this is maybe what has happened to my mother in a sense, if she has indeed had a stroke. She was used to having me there to pawn off all of her negative emotions, to blame me for everything that went wrong. When I left, she had to (for the first time in almost 28 years) look at herself, since her whipping boy had long since gone. I wonder if this did indead cause added stress therefore being a precipitator to the stroke. I am glad and blessed that I am not there in the midst of the chaos. Having to take care of her more after already taking care of her all of her most of my life when I was the one who needed to be raised. Thank you so much for the blog, it has kept me strong and stopped me from running back to the abuse. I can concentrate on my kids and keep them out of harms way, knowing I'm doing the right thing.
Thanks very much for this blog. I have been reading it for the past few hours.
I am still not sure if certain people in my life are full blown NM or just abusive narcissists. I can look at some things that they have done and think that was evil so maybe they are.
I have cut off or reduced contact with all of them because life is so much more pleasant and happy when you don't have to deal with people who play stupid and hurtful games. I used to just think of it as stupid game playing but now I am starting to wonder a bit more about their motivation for playing the games. Some of them stuck me as dangerous people who didn't have any morals.
Regardless of whether they are NM or just abusive, this site helps me feel better about my decision to avoid them.
I really like the interpretation of the story of Joesph where he needs to see that his brothers repent of their treatment of him. As someone who has been scolded for living in the past and not letting things go and not being able to get over things and be friends with someone who was quite abusive to me, it is nice to know that my decision was justified.
It is quite a trick that you feel hurt for the abuse and then you are told that you are lacking as human being for not being able to forgive and move on. That makes it even worse.
Again, thanks for the site.
The narcissist will not stop until they destroy another, so for self preservation no contact is neccesary. My twin sister is an extreme narcissist and has sent waves of destruction through our family. The idea that family must "get along" allows the narcissits to continue their reign. Evil can be contagious.
`Narcissits will always make their reality real. They have no consience, and to expect otherwise is no differnt than walking in front of a car or touching a hot stove. A narcissist will always destroy, and it is best to not be used as an accomplise.
You don't want to squander your wonderful life,
to waste your precious life among the hardhearted.
Why should you allow strangers to take advantage of you?
Why be exploited by those who care nothing for you?
My rule of thumb is... emotional detachment toward the N (if you need to keep him/her in your life for some practical reason) otherwise no contact ***and*** a LOT of prayers for his/her conversion.
If s/he will ever be touched by God, s/he will repent - and then can be forgiven.
Until then, no thanks :)
God gave Adam & Eve EVERYTHING. He gave them a beautiful place to live, all they could eat, and lots of authority. He freely loved and shared. Freely gave "hospitality." One caveat -- Do Not Eat From That Tree. And what did they do? They willfully and deliberately did the ONE THING He told them NOT to do. Yes, it was an act of defiance. They said "We don't have to listen to YOU. Who are YOU? Yes, you gave us all this, but IT'S NOT GOOD ENOUGH. We want MORE." And what did God do? CAST THEM OUT. When you have made simple requests of respecting your home, your marriage, your life, your children, your feelings, and they go out of their way to do what you asked them NOT to do, make no mistake. It is deliberate and willful. They are saying "We don't have to listen to YOU. You have given to us, but it's NOT ENOUGH. We WILL defy you." Do not feel guilty - CAST THEM OUT. Although God provided a way for us to get back into the Garden, it does not come without repentence.
Adam had an excuse "The woman YOU gave me." God did not accept the blame. I can assume He would not have accepted "YOU'RE too sensitive" or "YOU have to understand...." or "That's just the way I am."
I went NC with my mother 8 mo. ago. You really start seeing things you couldn't see before while you were under their spell. I never knew you could actually do such a thing as a Christian. I love it!!! I am waiting to see if the rest of my family are going do. Of course she's the one who doesn't tell people her business or "air her dirty laundry", but in order to gain the family's support she has shared this one. It is nothing short of amusing to consider them turning against me when for seventeen years they chose to go NC with her! Now they are @2000+ miles away. I am 14miles(and I cherish everyone of them) away and have endured almost every one of my 41years suffering at the hands of her abuse. But for some reason they are shocked that I won't do it anymore. Really? She is definitely demon possessed. I think some demons move out due to crowding. She left me a message where she changed her voice to have a California accent, like her family. Freaky. I read that a person cannot heal from abuse while they are still being abused. I am healing. I would not even be thinking about her now if she was not trying to turn my family against me. I would rather lose them than go back to Egypt. I have been set free. It takes time to figure out how to live a free man. It is awkward and new. But boy does it feel good. I no longer feel exploited and like a coward with no self esteem who is stuck in the cycle. I am taking up for myself, I am worth it, and I am getting stronger by the day. Did I mention stronger! I feel 4 feet taller and no longer a victim!!!!!!
Oh, the shame I feel about having been among the simpletons! I thought I could infuse enough of my own good will into a situation that the narcissist would see I was harmless! You see I could tell this was a narcissist before me, but I thought I could be safe due to my own goodness! Wow! What folly!
This makes me more of a target, but really the term simpleton is a little harsh. After all, how can you be expected to know what you don't know??
I am a devout Catholic who has had to go no contact with my narcissistic family. It has been painful enough to lose my family (though it has GREATLY improved my health), but I have had to deal with the "holier than thou" attitudes of family and in-laws regarding this issue. First of all, none of them have the courage, wisdom or integrity to what needed to be done in this situation. Second, their motivation for criticizing has generally been selfish (mostly not wanting to have to deal with the awkwardness that my no contact has personally caused them). They are far more willing to appease and enable the narcissist so that they don't have to deal with any unpleasantness (ironic, these loving Chrisitians would rather I be abused emotionally than deal with some discomfort). The hypocracy is staggering. God can save a narcissist without you. Do not be arrogant enough to think He can't. That is the guilt and shame the narcissist has indoctrinated in you talking. It was meant to keep you in their control. The victim of the abuse is not in a position to change the abuser. The victim has an obligation to his or her children, spouse and self to be healthy and functional so he or she can attend to these individuals needs first You have an obligation to save YOUR immediate family from this dysfunction. It destroys lives. It could literally be argued that it is selfish to remain in this abusive relationship as you are not meeting your obligations to those who do rely on you for love, affection, and stability (as a parent and spouse). Allow for the emotions to be expressed, but do not let them guide you. That is what logic, wisdom, and your brain are for. Have the character and integrity to do what is right, do not hide behind a curtain of false righteousness because you do not have the integrity or strength to stand up to this abuse and evil. It only enables the dysfunction and behavior. If you enable, there is no way you could ever "save" the person. If you are the victim of the abuse you are not in a position to do so any way. Forgive them and free yourself, but do not be foolish enough to forget what they are all about and be dragged back into their dysfunction.
Meg said :We moved about six months ago, I won't say where to, but not far from where we used to live. We didn't tell our families (both N-infected) our new address, changed our mobile numbers, landlines silent etc.
Today I hear from my MIL on our email address, which we left the same for business reasons, begging us to tell them where we are, because they are apparently worried to death about us.
I'm sorry, they didn't suddenly become worried. Someone else asked them about you and they had no good answer. This embarrassed them and threatened the image they had created. So they now scramble to find you so they can keep the false image in place.
I have a narcissist mother (her: late 60's me (male): early 40s. I had no real understanding for most of my life what she was, I was in a constant state of puzzlement. Leaned to "shut down" and not feel anything to cope with her hurtful rants which maddened her all the more.
"Escaped" and angered her more when I did not shrivel up and come crawling back as predicted but thrived out from her dictatorship.
She has a hard working witty good bread winner husband that enables her. I miss my father but he supported her in all things and went on month long work trips to "escape" and late night work appearing to all as a workaholic. I still do not forgive him, he knows what monster he has married. She once forced everyone (grandma, brother & dad) not to tell me when my grandfather died and sprang it on me. When I complained she said "you need to be around more to deserve being informed". I suspect this is how it will play out for my father in the future.
I got a girlfriend, then she became my wife, much runs at her from the mother which was the first time I faced her down. Everything got better when we had our first child and she was very charming and as well with our second. My brother (golden child) had his first child and we were dropped and went back to treating me to the scapegoat role she used to.
She pulled some really nasty bits when my father-in-law died and we told her we needed to sit down and come to an agreement on behavior or we cannot continue this relationship. We went into mutual no-contact for 3 years now.
I dreaded special occasions, I felt usually sick. I am SO happy now. A great weight is lifted. My wife is safe from her snipes, my children are safe from her inappropriate behavior. This is my responsibility as pointed out in this blog and I am glad to see some support in this decision. It will not be easy but it is paying good dividends. I still feel I am not right mentally compared to others but I can face the nastiest circumstances and barely blink = I am independent and have strong character due to this series of great wrongs done to a small lonely child so long ago. My children are nice, smart, characters that are rewarded appropriately for good effort and loved to the strong risk of being spoiled. My wife is a good person and is an equal partner I am very fortunate, we cover for each other: I still cannot get used to that.
No-one understands the kind of people these are. Complete utter self-interest. Spite with a strong willingness to punish. I have no patience for these people and find them easily which is disturbing. Reward good behavior and ignore the self serving.
Thanks all, I wish you all luck in self determination and finding love that is not withheld.
your blog is a God-send. For some time, i knew something wasn't right about "them" people (family). Fortunately going no-contact is no big deal - they don't care, never did, never will. And i am so done with "moping behind a computer screen." Looking back, i can't help but to conclude it was the Lord's way of getting the dross out of me - and the Lord isn't done yet, not by a long shot. Once again, thank you so much for posting your blog.
I have noticed that your e-mail is no longer active. I have been reading your blog for years, but this is the first time I have tried to make contact. I know you have wanted to move on. I am having a particularly hard time with my No Contact, which has been going on for years. I am a Christian, and lately I am having a difficult time with what I have done. I'm starting to feel as if I am evil, when I did not feel that way before. I saw it as protecting my family, but my kids have now grown. If you ever go through stages like this, I would like to talk to you.
My email is still active. I don't always answer emails though. I'm sorry if yours was not answered by me. I do understand what you are describing in your comment here. I have in recent months gone through some similar feelings. I have emerged on the other side of the valley of doubt. Feel free to try my email again. Make it clear that you are "Klarity" or "Sara" and I'll do my best to respond.
Anna, I cannot get your E-mail to open for me, so I will communicate right here. The scriptures provided on this post do help me. I think the feelings I sometimes get of being "evil" stem from the fact that all around me, I see people in my age group (I'm now 55)doing all kinds of things to help look after their parents, making sacrifices to take care of them any way they can. My mother is in a nursing home now (my sister told me), but even when she wasn't, I couldn't stand to be near her or talk to her anymore on the phone, so how could I help take care of her?
I think that I understand what it's like to face the "terrors of aging" because I have Multiple Sclerosis. I walk with a cane, but I am very stumbly! I don't see my postion as "selfish" but I tend to judge myself the way the rest of the world sees grown children like me: spoiled, selfish, cruel brats! I can't even stand to talk to her on the phone or deal with the card-sending thing. Have you ever had anyone moralize that "You can at least send a card!"? No matter how I try, the feelings of "evil" continue to assail me from time to time.
Shared this post on our A Cry For Justice facebook page. Thanks; it is excellent.
I just found out that my brother is getting married in May. I'm finally accepting that he fits the narcissistic profile. I feel I'm still recovering from the holidays. I really don't want to attend his wedding. I feel panic just thinking about it. I also don't want to disappoint my mother (who I do get along fine with).
So no contact is no contact. Don't cave into the pressure of family obligations.
It is your call, AZorbie. If you need to stay away from your brother's wedding for your own sanity then do what you must. If you and your mother are close then it seems as if you'd be able to explain your reasons to her. She may not like your decision but hopefully she'll respect it.
For me, I have come to the conclusion that each situation is different. I had no contact with my father for 5 years, now we have a moderately "healthy" relationship. For me, this means I know who I am, I know who he is, and I know where the boundaries are. My mother, have had no contact with for for 6 years (I think, could be 7), and I don't forsee that ever changing. Why? Because I do think she is dangerous. I don't yet have children, but when I do, I do not believe they would ever be safe with her. For this reason, I stay away. This is what is healthy for me and my family. My mother-in-law is now the individual I am struggling with, in knowing how to deal with her. I do not think or proclaim myself to be strong enough to bear her terror. I am not. Nor do I have delusions that I can save her. I am not God and have no such capacity. I am not confusing myself with such lies. I do worry though, about following the way of light and truth. I do believe that I am supposed to do good in all things--and to those that who do hate me and use me. I do consider, that leaving her be could be considered good, for the reason that so many have stated in these comments. At this point, I am concluding the best answer in this situation is minimal contact--especially because she is quite elderly and does need help/care. I will not let her change me. I will do what I can even if it is extremely minimal.
I agree that each situation is different and must be analyzed on an individual basis. As you have done. And well done. All the best to you.
I think the trouble is not turning away, but accepting the other as "evil".
I have been NC with my N mother for about 10 years now and I still would hesitate to call her "evil". I know though that many things she did were evil. I was so close to her until I was about twenty-five that I know her feelings and motivations very well. I still feel for her, but I no longer excuse her. We all suffer in our lives, it is no excuse for making others suffer pretending they provoked or deserved it.
As for contagiousness, I believed her for ages that my father is an evil man. It somehow never rang quite true. It took me a very long time to realize that he's a sinner all right, but her mind works like that of a criminal. No conscience. No social responsibility. But, on the contrary, the firm conviction of being "good" and wanting all only for the best.
I have turned away from her, but I would not call her "evil". Very, very sick in her mind and psyche and thus dangerous, yes. Whether she is evil and what is to become of her is for God to say. I have long stopped wanting to help her.
Notice I mostly use the term "evil doer". That is a term that judges the actions as evil. It focuses more on what a person DOES than what they are. Although, if an individual persists in doing evil it is safe enough to say they are evil. At least, if one is going to approach this subject from a biblical view of humanity.
What if they are your spouse? Can you divorce or at minimum separate? I left, want a divorce, but keep hearing in my heart "give her until February." But I REALLY want out. We married waaaay too quickly and it was all based on her lying about who and what she is and what she believes and how she lives. Signs were all there in hindsight... :(
Patrick, Why February??? Why give her an extended time to manipulate your friends and family? It is best to let them all know and get a divorce. The sooner you have done with it, the better off you will be. Also, if you have no children you should immediately go no contact.
THEY DO NOT GET BETTER AND THEY DO NOT CHANGE EXCEPT TO GROW INCREASINGLY WORSE!
Listen to song Big Hat no cattle. Randy Newman. Ha. A narc!! Play it for your narcs!
"Never cutting them off allows the evil doer to feel justified in what they are and in what they do." Oh jeez, did I ever need to read this today. I've tried unsuccessfully to go no contact with my malignant narcissistic, once-physically/ always verbally/psychologically/mentally/even spiritually abusive mother several times in the past: Once after she kicked me out of the house at 19, once last year at age 39, and now for the final time at age 40. This time I did it like I mean it, because I do. Sent good-bye letter certified mail (since it's the only way to be "heard" by her, whatever that means), changed phone number, blocked her on social media, and marked her email account as spam. And you know what else I did that I hadn't done before? EXPOSED her treacherous self via another letter to a loving mother figure in my life who has no idea what happened to us kids. We'll see how it goes. It's funny. I can spot a "Mom"-esque person a mile away and my guard goes up until they lose interest or I cut them out quickly with no regrets, but it took me 40 precious years to cast out the greatest evil doer I've ever been close to.
But what is most nauseating is what happened to my brother as I sat by in stunned, complicit silence. To say he was scapegoated in recent years is an understatement, although in our house growing up I was the scapegoat a while when he was the Golden Child and vice versa, etc. It is sobering and justifiably shaming to me to finally see that my inertia was an accomplice to evil. What a fool, a simpleton, indeed I've been. And stubborn. That why sites like yours and Sister Renee's are so vitally important to not only victims but to the average sitting duck out there who doesn't know the evil that may someday lurk around their corner in the form of NPD. And do you guys know how long it took me to finally say, yes, my mother is seized by plain, ol' evil? Forever. It's really hard to admit, but if I hadn't done it I'd still be party to it. No thanks.
But I'm not only exposing her for me and my bro (who went no contact with me years ago and I don't blame him), I'm doing it for my stepdad. She is horribly verbally abusive to him now that he's a physically broken down man. Seeing her abuse him was a real eye opener. Despite her little song and dance of "I've changed, Lisa" she launches into from time to time, I'm sure I don't have to tell you she hasn't. Not one iota. Sister Renee said something on her site that resonated: Release them to God, to paraphrase. He's the only one who can save them. Indeed.
Thank you, Anna, so much. Thanks for sharing your story and wisdom. People like you and Sister Renee are lifesavers. (And I like Van Helsing, too!)
P. S. Guys, watch what sites you read. Pretty sure I've stumbled onto some dubious ones purporting to be for ACoNs. Some are clueless or maybe perhaps downright deceptive/abusive themselves?
Thanks for sharing your story here, Lisa. It will help lead others to light and freedom. I can relate to every word.
All the best and be well,
What if the narcissist is your spouse? Is it grounds for divorce so you can remove yourself from evil?
Narcissists, because of what they are, will give you plenty of grounds for divorce. Lie, cheat, steal are their modus operandi. Pay attention and you'll find your grounds...
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