There was a new bounce in his step. Mr. Stefani stood a little straighter, and his face expressed an almost smile. Intriguing. I had treated elderly Mr. Stefani, suffering progressive heart failure, for approximately a year. It was an exercise like table tennis. I told him how important it was to take medications on a regular basis – he […]
screams of agony are merely
Scream and writhe, plead in pain.
No one wants to hear that shit
or see that squirm.
But even before…
No one stood up to help
No one cried out the injustice
No one stood next to me
or for me.
I suppose no one knows what could be done
while they’ve murdered me
yet kept me alive
to feel death every step of the way
every inch of the process.
Killing off piece
while everyone has watched
either in agreement
in judgment of me
or in silence.
Not all suicides are self inflicted.
There are strong relentless hands around my throat
Barbed wire squeezing my heart
Vacuumes sucking out my spirit
Furious flames blaze my will to live.
I’m a useless puppet who never worked properly
so they’ve destroyed me slowly
from the inside out.
There was silence while I was abused
or the noise of blame thrown in my ears.
Stillness as I was raped.
Silence while I cried.
Apathy while I begged.
My pleas were ignored
all my life
This is no suicide.
This has been a long, slow execution
started at my birth.
…a painfully slow torture to the death
among a gallery of silent, apathetic observers
watching with blank stares
speaking empty words
Are letters appropriate or overkills of burdens?
I loved the sound of my two daughters laughter more than any other sound in the world. Here is the only video I have which recorded their laughter: Dancin with Lexi Lou joyfully recorded by Savannah Grace. They’re not little children in this video, but I can still hear their little child laughter echoing in my mind <3.
I hung windchimes over their cradles to protect them from nightmares as babies.
Regardless of the depth of their hatred, persecution, and insults, I doubt my worth and value more than any one around me possibly could, but I grasp and accept their verdict of my worth 100%.
Oranges taste like sunshine to my tastebuds.
I eat a lot of oranges lately.
Loving my daughters brought me my greatest joy in life and is now the prickliest, sharpest, most relentless of thorns wrapped tightly around my heart… it’s like my insides are swaddled in tiny razor blades. No one can see them, so when I do allow myself to scream out, I just look hysterical, angry, pathetic, and probably insane, like someone running from and swatting a swarm of angry invisible wasps.
Yes, I made up a goofy wake-up song for my children when they were toddlers to try to make the yukky of rising from slumber more bearable and fun. I loved the smiles it brought to their faces the minute they opened their beautiful, sleepy eyes.
As they got older (and more grumpy) upon waking up, I used to play old 70’s disco songs and do silly dances around their rooms, singing into a hairbrush to wake them up.
Sometimes they looked so beautifully blissful and content, I let my children sleep when I was supposed to wake them…
One of my all time favorite memories: I used to play this CD Fairy Heart Magic in the house and the car. In the house, we three would put on fairy wings and dance around the house pretending to be fairies.
I have fully forgiven my rapists, my molesters, and my non-narcissistic abusers, but I’ll never be able to forgive myself for being too weak, disoriented, and devastated to stop my mother from making my daddy’s funeral into a complete mockery and a joke. Regardless of his accomplishments (or his mistakes!) in his life, he deserved so very much better than that.
I used to pretend plants talked to me and told me silly secrets just to hear my daughters’ belly laugh.
Once when I was only 19, a very violent and abusive man gave me the most beautiful pink wool winter coat. I never felt prettier in my life than when I wore that coat.
I got great joy when Savannah munched on the raw herbs I grew to cook with and seemed so proud to eat what I grew, even if it was just parsley and basil!
My dad was truly my very best (and only true) friend I had in my life, aside from the friendship I (thought I) shared with my daughters.
My house is a disaster and I can’t bring myself to care. Doesn’t seem to matter how I leave it now. Yet, that frustrates me still!
My wild horses arrived in proximity of my address yesterday at 5:30 pm.
I bought that car a week before my dad died solely because of the huge smile it brought to Lexi’s face while we test drove it. I’ve kept it for the same reason…trying to hold onto the memory of her smile and that chilly spring evening we drove and bought it together. I believed with all my heart she deserved that smile, especially after the hell her father had put her through by stealing our home from under our feet. In a way, it was my feeble attempt to make up for what he’d done to hurt her so badly. Seems so very silly now, really… Only he could make it up to her and he did so by lying and denying the truth of what he’d done and apparently by saying he “felt it was best” (to steal our home!)
Knowing the horses are almost here, suddenly I feel compelled to share anything and everything…just let it tumble out nonsensically just to be sure it gets out somewhere…maybe to someone…
Once I suspended sparkling butterflies and flowers from the ceiling in my daughters’ bedroom to transform it into a “magical garden for two fairy princesses”. They were just the cheapest dollar store goods I could afford, but the huge smiles of delight and “oooohhh’s and ahhhhh’s” as they walked into their bedroom that day made me feel like I’d spent a gazillion dollars.
In my life, very little of what I’ve said or felt mattered.
I believed with all my heart and soul, that I created some of the most amazing and happy memories for my children that any momma could, thinking memories were the one thing no one could ever take from us.
As a child, my greatest wish was that my mother would play and laugh with me just once. So I played and laughed with my children every day.
It’s unbearable that even our happiest memories are either all gone or have been stolen.
This is now my garbage dump of urgency and nonsense.
The other half is almost here.
I track it like a mad woman. Every time I have the senseless urge to reach out to cry on someone’s shoulder, or to just talk begging to be heard, or maybe to just listen begging for human sound, instead I just track the package.
Today, it’s reached a 45 mile radius. I cried in gratitude. I wanted to jump in my car and drive to it…now. Right now. Those wild horses are nearly within my grasp…
I can’t though. I must wait just a little bit longer.
And there’s no one to talk to anyway. I can still listen, but the horrible truth is I no longer can listen with the sincere interest I once had. The agony is too loud. I listen with hopes that my words, too, might matter if I do. They won’t though. I know that.
My pain, my fury, the cuts of so many betrayals – a literal lifetime of betrayals- of all those who should have stood up for me. Those who should have helped, but stood by and did nothing… all the while saying, “I love you”. God, how I fucking hate those words now. I love you. The very words I once ached for. They hurt my ears and stab cruelly into my soul now. I’ll never believe in those words again – not from anyone.
Ever since I was a very little girl, I’d pray for someone to help me, rescue me, or just stand up for me.
No one ever did. Ever. Not even once.
This is why I advocated so adamantly for the defenseless ones when I got big enough to convince myself I could be the one…the one to show up and not be silent. To speak up even if my voice shook and my knees were weak. Not just sit by shrugging my shoulders saying, Oh that’s too bad. Oh, well that’s not really my business. Oh life’s just not fair. Sorry that’s happening to you.. blah blah blah… empty words with even emptier sentiments. It’s just bullshit people say when they know they should give a fuck, but they don’t.
I’ve never in my life asked or expected anyone to fight my battles. But just to fucking stand up next to me, or for me, and say, THIS IS WRONG and SHE’S NOT ALONE DAMNIT. It’s so much easier for attackers when they know someone’s alone and no one is brave enough or cares enough to stand with them.
Easy target. I’ve always been the easiest target of them all. At least dogs will bite. I was trained not to bite or fight or resist at all – no matter what was being done to me.
I was trained to accept abuse.
I’m dead weight. The long trail of pain, betrayal, and abuse, are too heavy for anyone to even think to lift a finger to help now.
Not that they did before either.
I don’t even want help now. I accept my fate. I won’t burden anyone by reaching out to make me screams heard ever again.
It’s almost here! It’s almost over!
For as long as I can remember, I’ve been desperate to dissect and analyze every piece of me to try to determine what’s so fucking wrong with me and how I might fix whatever it is. I can’t even recall a time in my life from my earliest memory (which was around 3) til today when I wasn’t acutely aware that I’m different- and not necessarily a good different, but vastly different from my peers, my family, my friends, and co-workers.
Recently a friend of mine contacted me to tell me she’d stumbled across some study which she found that discovered a strong link between domestic violence and early- age stroke. She thought of me because she knew my history of domestic violence as well as my stroke at age 26. I googled this and discovered that link as well as research linking child abuse/neglect and early-age stroke.
I had an acute ischemic stroke at the age of 26. My mother (who knows all!) immediately dismissed the cause as a common side effect of taking birth control pills and smoking. I tended to believe that too (after all mother knows all, right?!) until after several doctors gathered my history it was deemed that my use of birth control pills was so random and scarce throughout my 26 years that they did not feel inclined to think that caused it, citing that typically stroke only occurs due to that in women who have taken contraceptive pills for many years without ceasing. I had only taken birth control for a sum total of 2.5 of my 26 years and that was scattered across a period of six years. My ex has told people it was caused from me “chain smoking”, which he apparently determined I was doing from two states away in addition to my full time job and not smoking at home around my infant. The doctors also determined my smoking probably hadn’t helped me not have a stroke at 26 but they did not deem that the cause.
Ultimately, in my humble opinion for lack of any definitive answers, the team of specialists blamed my 6 week pregnancy as the cause of my stroke. Although after 3 months in the hospital recovering, my obstetrician told me that in all the gazillion tests which had been run on me in my 3 month hospital stay, they never could pinpoint a single probable cause for me at 26, underweight, with typically frighteningly low blood pressure, and zero history of drug use, to have had this sudden stroke. It remained an elusive mystery to all the specialists.
That said, I feel it’s quite likely that it was from my history of child abuse and domestic violence which was pretty much non-stop my entire life. According to this article, For women, the consequences of domestic violence can last a lifetime,
Women who have fallen victim to domestic violence are 80 percent more likely to suffer a stroke, 70 percent more likely to have heart disease, 70 percent more likely to become heavy drinkers, and 60 percent more likely to become asthmatic than women who have not, according to a 2008 report by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
And another article, Childhood Neglect Linked With Stroke Risk says,
Children neglected before the age of 18 have a higher risk of suffering a stroke in adulthood, according to new research. Earlier research has found a link between childhood abuse and later mental illness. Neglect, or the lack of a warm and responsive caregiver, has also been shown to cause changes in the brain’s grey and white matter. Bullying, abuse and other exposure to violence are also known to accelerate biological aging in kids.
It’s uncanny that all this abuse that my perpetrators claim didn’t happen, would have made the possibility of me having a random extraordinarily rare with no obvious causes stroke much than an 80% chance. If domestic violence alone increases the odds by a whopping 80% and then childhood abuse adds even more to that risk factor, then there were clearly far more cumulative odds I would have an atypical random circumstantial stroke in my lifetime than that I would not.
I’m no scientist of course, but I would be willing to bet the farm that relationships with long term narcissistic abuse are, in themselves, a strong risk factor for things like stroke, chronic depression, alcohol abuse, severe low self-esteem, and debilitating identity disorders. …makes me want to go back to school to get a psychology degree just so I might do this research study myself!
Over my lifetime when I’ve doubted my very experiences, questioned my own memories, and struggled desperately to figure out what the fuck is WRONG with me and FIX IT ALREADY for fuck’s sake, I frequently cling to the one blessed moment of validation I received as a child. My mother had dragged me to a psychiatrist, Dr. Orndoff, when I was in the 7th grade because she was so SICK AND TIRED OF ME ACTING UP. I was mortified, already had terrible trust issues from being raised and abused by a pathological narcissist who hated me for existing, and had no clue that mother wasn’t right about me, nor a single clue that it was some pretty rough chronic abuse I was dealing with. I was scared to talk to this elderly (seemingly goofy and odd) man in this hot little upstairs office. I was wildly afraid (and positively certain) this man would scream at me and tell me what a fucked up horrible child I was because all I knew for certain in the 7th grade was that mother was never, ever wrong and entirely infallible while I couldn’t seem to get anything right no matter how desperately I wanted to please her.
I thank my lucky stars that this kind, gentle doctor was able to convince scared-out-of -my-mind ashamed-to-even-exist-13 year old me that it was safe for me to talk openly and freely. This would be my only moment of safety and validation from my first 17 years of life and the only hope I had that maybe I wasn’t just a horrible kid who didn’t deserve to exist and who brought all the abuse I received ONTO MYSELF for being me. After several weeks of talking and listening with this man, he had me take the MMPA and when the results came, he informed me that the lie-proof results indicated only 3 specific items of great note and/or concern:
1. I was exceedingly honest. He said that the lie detector built in to the test typically had some scale, even when the patient wasn’t lying but might change their mind or perspective slightly when a question was repeated and worded differently. He said that I scored a literal “0” in the lie-detecting factor and that he’d never seen that score before as most scored at least a 1 or 2.
(Yes, I was painfully honest and meticulous in my answers! I wanted to know what was wrong with me so he could help me fix it and maybe my mother could love me)
2. I scored no balance for the male/female traits we all carry. I was 100% feminine through and through with literally none of the typically masculine traits like anger, stubbornness, or violence which most females carry at least a small degree of to balance out their personality, just like most men carry at least a few tiny traits of the more traditionally feminine traits.
3. I was clinically depressed to a dangerously critical level. To this, Dr. Orndoff gave me the greatest validation of all. He said, directly to me, with consideration of your home life and your mother’s many indications of paranoid schizophrenia. I’m shocked you are as normal of a child as you are under such circumstances. His was recommending anti-depressants and going to encourage my mother to re-think her parenting tactics as well as maybe seek professional help for herself. I immediately begged (yes, as in pleaded tearfully!) Dr. Orndoff not to tell my mother ANY of these things. I told him point blank, “if you tell her any of that, I’ll never see you again and I’ll never be able to fix what’s wrong with me.” He insisted that because I was a minor child, he was obligated by law and ethics to give my mother his honest and straight professional assessment. And I knew that was the end of any validation that I wasn’t horrible and weird and bad and it also meant I’d not be able to correct whatever was so very WRONG WITH ME.
Oh and yes, mother was LIVID! She was NOT going to have me taking “happy pills” and thinking “taking a pill would solve all my problems in life!!!” ohhhhhhhh hell nooooo! There would be NO HAPPY PILLS for her HORRIBLE daughter who must have faked and lied about everything “just to get attention!” Mother was infuriated and disgusted at this man’s “complete incompetence” to fall for my “charade and my lies!”
And I never saw Dr. Orndoff again professionally. However, I was given a lead role in a play at our civic theatre a year later and after it was over and we lined up in the theatre lobby to greet the audience, HE WAS THERE! I couldn’t believe my eyes! He shook my hand very warmly and said that I had done wonderfully and that I had a really compelling stage presence that was undeniable and strikingly obvious. He encouraged me to continue to pursue theatre throughout my life. (This was a shining moment in life for me and I’m getting choked up even now just recalling how in awe I was that he’d came to see me perform and was saying such encouraging things to me.
And that’s the last I saw or heard of Dr. Orndoff until some years later when I was in college and mother called to tell me he’d died.
Thank you Dr. Orndoff for the words you spoke to a scared, confused, and beaten down teenage girl that she still holds onto to this very day. Thank you for being the only person who saw straight through my mother’s schemes and lies. Thank you for believing in me as a person and for patiently listening to and believing my experience.
It’s 1995 and MD, my live-in boyfriend, has checked himself into a 30 day rehab for sex addiction because I’d caught him lying and cheating one too many times and I was leaving him. I was 3 months pregnant with our first baby and had just taken maternity leave from my job as a cocktail server due to hardcore nausea, vomiting, and pregnancy precautions due to other issues. I had no money or income. After the first week with MD in rehab, I ran out of food.
When it had been 6 straight days with nothing to eat, I was physically weak and had a chronic splitting headache which I assume was due to my hypoglycemia issues plus developing pregnancy. I was sleeping like a bear in hibernation, constantly throughout the days and nights, to escape the maddening cravings for food. It was all I really could do. I had been isolated from my friends when we started dating and here I was unplanned and unexpectedly pregnant by a man who not only treated me worse than dirt on his shoe, but couldn’t keep his dick in his pants or tell the truth to save his life. I had only my precious cat, Porsche, for my best friend, my confidant, my snugglebuddy… Porsche and the tiny baby inside me were my whole world.
In my excessive sleeping, I’d recently begun having chronic wildly scary nightmares about the affect this malnutrition was going to have on my growing baby. I’d learned from my What To Expect When You’re Expecting book that the first trimester was a critical time for baby’s development. So my subconscious was working full force to descriptively show me in great gory detail all the horrifying possibilities of the damage being with done every famished second that passed.
Determined to find something in that kitchen to eat, whether it was an old beaten up can of kidney beans, an ancient forgotten can of creamed spinach, or whatever, I made a diligent, open-minded search! There was nothing left in the pantry, so I scavenged through the refrigerator like I had on many occasions in the days before, only this time my nightmares had scared me into an open mind for anything…literally. Anything.
Voila!! I see the leftovers I already picked through the same day MD had checked in to I Can’t Keep My Dick In my Pants rehab center. Now, these leftovers are about 2 weeks old. It’s a tuna casserole I’d made awhile prior to him leaving. I’d seen it before but had been a little scared to eat it because I wasn’t sure how long it stayed edible. I did a haphazard food inspection. There wasn’t any obvious mold; suddenly it was a casserole gold to my eyes…a delicious feast!!
I didn’t bother heating it up. Fork in hand, I stood right in front of the fridge with the saran wrap pulled half off the glass casserole dish and shoveled a few forkfuls into my mouth. It tasted horrible, dry and bland, but not yet rancid, so I figured it would do the trick.
After these bites of food, I grabbed the needle point I was working on (learning) and sat in a comfy chair in the living room with Porsche, my devoted cat curled next to me. After a while, I got very sleepy and dozed off for a few minutes. Suddenly I abruptly woke. My stomach was churning and flipping and I felt vomit quickly rising. I ran to the bathroom and puked. The vomit was mostly watery mixed with some chunks of tuna and chewed pasta shells. I wiped my face down, rinsed my mouth with some water right from the bathroom spigot and lied down in the bedroom. Still feeling terribly sick to my stomach, my mind started wondering. I had a scary thought: What if the food actually was spoiled and I had just poisoned my baby? If a pregnant woman inadvertently ate something poisonous, would it kill the baby? I didn’t know!
I started crying from fear and guilt, apologizing out loud to my stomach, rubbing it and saying, please be okay little baby, please be ok? Your momma is so sorry! I felt destitute and afraid for my baby so much that I telephoned my mother. My mother who had been angry, disappointed or downright disgusted with me for as long as I could recall, most likely since the day of my birth. It wasn’t an easy call for help to make. However, my mother married a wealthy business owner when I was little more than a toddler and enjoyed bragging of her luxury and financial comfort. And after all, she was a mother and would at least know if I should call 911 for the baby, right?
So, I phoned her, trying not to let on how hungry I was; I didn’t want her to insult and criticize my baby’s father. I made casual conversation at first. , during which she began explaining her latest car purchase, a flashy little red sports car. After listening earnestly and ooh-ing and ahh-ing over her latest indulgence for long enough that I felt a subject switch was appropriate, and still trying to downplay my desperation, I finally asked nonchalantly about eating spoiled food while pregnant and if that might hurt my baby. She wasn’t sure but she thought probably not, she thought that my body would most likely rid itself of the bacteria and only the nutrients would go to my baby. Okay, I thought to myself, I can eat that last bit of casserole very slowly each day. I felt much relieved… until I remembered there wasn’t much left of the spoiled tuna at all. I walked into the kitchen on the phone and peeked again at the dinner I’d been so proud to prepare for my boyfriend only a short while ago, which today felt like years, not weeks ago, and saw there was maybe 4 or five tablespoons of it left. Could I eat around 2 shell macaroni’s each day? No, even at that meager amount, I’d run out soon. It wouldn’t last three weeks, even if I could get it down as it spoiled more and more each day that would pass.
I knew I had no choice. My baby deserved food. Even if I deserved to starve to death, this innocent child inside me did not, of that I was certain!
So I sucked up my pride and asked this woman who had carried me inside her body 25 years ago, Would you please send me $50 for groceries ? It’s only three weeks til MD will be out of rehab, I just needed a little help to get through til then.
No, she says. Go get on welfare.
Ok, could I maybe please borrow $25 and pay you back in a few weeks?
No. You can get on welfare.
What? Welfare? I knew nothing of welfare and certainly didn’t feel entitled to it. I was living in MD’s decent 3 bedroom, two bath house! Welfare was for homeless people with 5 starving kids, not a 25 year old newly pregnant college student with a boyfriend in sex addiction rehab. I mean, I didn’t eat much anyway. I only needed bare food necessities for a few weeks….some milk or rice or maybe a bag of apples would do me. I could make that last a really long time! That wouldn’t be fair to ask for welfare! I wouldn’t eat much…At 5’8 “ and 106 pounds, I had already lost 7 pounds while carrying this baby these three stress filled months of domestic violence, mind boggling gas lighting, and cheating. Gosh, I didn’t need much. I don’t want to apply for welfare!! I’d even be fine without food for a while longer if I wasn’t pregnant, in fact I was sick so much lately, I actually preferred not to eat at all. But this growing guilt and stress of what it could do to this tiny heartbeat depending on me for its survival was causing these horrific nightmares of crying babies and distorted newborns. The guilt was eating my brain alive, just like my body was slowly feeding on my muscles to survive. (And in one particularly nasty dream I’d had, my body actually had fed on my fetus! EEK!) I may not deserve diddly squat for putting myself in this situation, but this innocent baby deserves food!!!! It’s not her fault! I just needed enough to give basic nourishment to this baby growing inside of me. I of course said nothing to Mother about these thoughts.
This rejection of even basic humanity and compassion from my mother hurt in a place I’d forgotten existed since I’d been out of her house and on my own….this strange, hollow place of pain, reminiscent of a piercing sharp hunger ache, only it was in my chest. I still don’t know exactly what that acute pain was, I clearly remembered feeling it as a little girl on many occasions, crying quietly to God in my room , begging Him to tell me how I could make myself good enough to be loved by my mother. Make me good enough to deserve love and affection. I’m not much of a prideful person per se, but after the second “no”, I quickly realized there’s no shame or pride involved in the “please help me keep my innocent baby from severe deformity or death” game! At this point I knew for certain, if anything happened to my baby’s health or life from my neglect of feeding it while it shared and depended on my body, I would wish for death. I could never survive that unceasing life-long guilt and shame….letting down this teeny living creature depending on me for its every comfort or survival. No, this, I could never live with. I would lick dirt off someone’s feet right now if I can just get food enough for two weeks! No, in this very moment full of these fears and hunger, sickness and nightmares, I would have gladly done that or anything really, for help.
“Mom, please?” I pleaded.
“That’s what welfare is for…people like you”, she answered with an unmistakable sneer in her voice. That tone of voice people use when it becomes evident that they are getting immense pleasure from the power of punishment in whatever they’re saying at that moment; I mean deep soul pleasure as though they’ve just been granted a fervent lifetime wish. I was all too familiar with this tone; it was a staple of all maternal communication towars me since my earliest memory. Hearing that so clearly in her voice, right now in this circumstance, I thought I might need a shower afterward to wash the filthy joy of cruelty this conversation was obviously giving her and I had this strange hopeless feeling that I had just called up Satan for help and offered to temporarily sell my soul for grocery money.
Ok, I said. I hung up the phone and looked in the phonebook for welfare. When I figured out the correct agency, I called to see if I could just get some temporary food assistance for a few weeks. I applied. I was eligible!! Due to my pregnancy and recent lack of nutrition, it took only a few days til the food stamps came through and I carefully rationed the leftover-leftovers of tuna casserole to get baby and me through those few days.
In hindsight, I realize my frame of mind here. Like a captive who doesn’t even run for freedom at his first chance. I didn’t even think to call my dad to ask him for fifty dollars or for help at all. Although I now realize how crazy that frame of mind was! He would have gladly sent me $100 or whatever he could afford! And still worried it may not be enough and would have called regularly to check on me, caring how baby and I were doing.
But mother had said no and I knew from experience, no meant no. And if your own mother doesn’t think you or your baby are worth loaning $25 to, then you must REALLY not be worth loaning grocery money to. You and your baby must not deserve help or food. I went instantly into my well-trained “accept your punishment quietly (or you’ll get it worse!)” mode even though I was technically an adult now. I don’t know what “worse” than possibly starving or deforming my unborn baby was, but I was trained VERY effectively to take my knocks and accept responsibility for my situation. No matter what it was, it had to be my fault, had to be exactly what I deserved. So if mother said no then clearly, my baby and I didn’t deserve anything but 4 tablespoons of spoiled tuna casserole for the next three weeks or …welfare…. After all, mommie dearest had said that’s what it’s for – for “people like me”.
I have all my life been deeply fascinated and intrigued by evil, by its sheer existence, its diabolical methods, its sinister purpose, its complex functioning, its hateful motives, and its intricate inner workings. I imagine my fascination is like a child born in the tropics wants to literally and figuratively grasp the concept of snow.
I’ve finally realized the line. The actual line! It seems simple and obvious and most of my “eureka” moments of epiphany ( like in this revelation of The True Face of Evil ) were all pointing directly at this line, but I hadn’t figured out the very specific equation that differentiates between good and evil, bad choices and bad people, selfishness and pathological narcissism, etc., etc…
It’s definitely not just that evil feels nothing when it lashes out to inflict pain on others. True evil, actual pathology, literal sociopaths and narcissistic disordered people ENJOY it!
Here it is in all it’s simplistic glory: the ultimate defining line between the two:
They. Enjoy. It.
They feed off it.
It brings them actual pleasure.
Now, I was raised by a cruel mother who’s “mothering” tactics easily represent something like Samuel Jackson’s character in Pulp Fiction as displayed in the “say what again” scene here:
The last severe, pants and panties around my ankles leaned over the bed, beating I received was at 14 years old. I was in the 8th grade and my actual crime was I said “I promise I didn’t do anything mommy” one too many times while being questioned of something I had, in fact, not done. Thus, I had no other options for a truthful response to her raging hot-breath-in-my-face interrogation. I was 14. I didn’t know what other answer to give except the truth and lying, even just the perception of lying without any actual lie, brought down furious and lengthy punishments. I couldn’t lie. So when she shrieked, IF YOU SAY ‘I DIDN’T DO ANYTHING ‘ ONNNNEEEE MOOOORRRREEE TIMMMMEEEE, I WILL BEAT YOU WITHIN AN INCH OF YOUR LIFE, I truly had no other honest answer to her question. Believe me, I desperately wanted to give her another answer and I’d gotten pretty good over my short life at learning how to guess what answer she was looking for and wouldn’t stop berating and accusing me until she got it out of me, but in this specific situation I truly had no idea what the “right” answer was. I was clueless as to what magic reply would satisfy her and make the threats and screaming stop.
Yup, I defied her demand and gave the only answer I had available to me and yup, she dragged me into her bedroom made me pull down my pants and panties, lean face down over her gigantic red velvet bedspread, and beat me up and down from my ankles up to my lower back (wherever the flesh was naked and exposed) with the buckle end of one of my step-dad’s big leather belts.
This time was different for me than the others tho. Usually I would cry and beg and plead for her to stop. My brain would frantically try to understand whatever I had done wrong so I could be sure not to do it ever again. And no matter how confusing and truly innocent I’d felt, I could find a way to blame myself and accept responsibility for something… anything… to justify her punishing me.
This time, just like I had no other truth to give her no matter how badly I wanted to give her the “right” answer; this time I knew absolutely I had not done anything wrong. I mean not even a “sassy tone” or a “salty face”. For the first time ever in 14 years of life, I truly knew I had done nothing wrong.
So I couldn’t cry. It hurt… yeah, it burned and stung like millions of wasps attacking my bare naked backside. And as she went back over the areas she’d already hit once or twice, it felt like my skin had been set on fire. I couldn’t feel the specific sting or cuts into my flesh anymore. It merely felt like she’d set a match to my ankles and I was drenched in gasoline. It just burned with wild painful fury .
Yeah, it hurt like a mother fucker. But I couldn’t cry this time. I just couldn’t. My faith in my innocence was too solid to beg and plead and cry and wail like a toddler… not even at the pain of it. I just was unable to cry. I just lied there silent and patiently waiting until she might run out of fury or energy or motivation… or whatever it was that was driving this senselessly harsh furious red hot beating.
I lost time waiting. So I can’t know for certain how long the beating went on before she paused to snatch my head back by my hair and glared rage directly into my face, and snidely screamed, OH YOU THINK YOU’RE TOO BIG TO CRY NOW, HUH? WELL, I WILL JUST KEEP GOING UNTIL YOU DO.
So I knew I was really fucked this time. Just fucked. I would have gladly given her the pleasure of me bawling my head off to make it stop, but I literally could. Not. Cry. I just couldn’t. I realized she would keep going until she killed me. And that I would lie there docile and quietly accepting it until my death. I definitely knew better than to fight back or try to run. So she dropped my face back down in the red velvet bedspread and continued beating me with a new gust of furiously determined energy.
I have no clue how much longer the beating went on. I lost time completely and removed myself from my body in order to tolerate the pain and accept my inevitable death. Until at some point, I came back to present awareness when it suddenly stopped and I heard my sister say, “Mom, stop. You’re going to kill her.”
I remember those words vividly and they snapped me back into the present moment. No one had ever dared stand up to or stop my mother!! I instantly became afraid for my sister. Even though she was the golden child, mother’s fury once at this level, could unleash on anyone. I couldn’t believe my sister was willing to risk her life to save mine and I was petrified because I was scared I couldn’t save her like she had me.
This, made me cry. I sobbed both in gratitude and fear for my sister. Tears of shame came running out of my desert-dry eyeballs worried that I wouldn’t have the same courage to stand up to mother if she chose now to direct all this fury onto my sister.
She didn’t though. And the rest of the night is a blur. I only remember trying not to bleed on the sheets when I went to bed that night. I slept face down without any covers trying to keep my wounds from staining the sheets. I prayed the bleeding would stop before I fell asleep in case I turned over in my sleep. I remember how excruciating it was trying to put pants on for school the next morning so I wore an old pair of my sister’s sweatpants.
After everything, one wouldn’t think I’d be so dense and slow to figure this definitive line out, but I’ve come to understand that those without this evil really are blind to understanding something so thoroughly foreign to their own nature. I have spent my life desperately looking for reasons why some behave this way; looking for understanding rather than pinpointing the definition. I’ve always believed if I could just understand why they did this, then I could choose not to let it affect and traumatize me or maybe I could even help them overcome their pain and love the cruelty out of them. Good souls will never understand its definitive opposite. It doesn’t have the ability to accept evil and cruelty for the mere sake of being evil and cruel. This is another way some are repeat victims. The light can’t see darkness for what it is. Once light shines to look and see the face of darkness , the darkness is gone. We can understand logically that darkness and evil do exist, but we can’t actually ever see it. Our vision and sight flow first through our soul spreading lights of compassion and kindness into our very eyeballs and sprinkle it over our logic a little as well so that good can’t truly see the face of evil or understand it for what it is. By the time it reaches our eyeballs to see or our mind to understand, it has already been touched, tainted, and altered somewhat by the light of goodness from our soul before we ever gaze upon it or attempt to sort through it for the understanding light souls want to have for everything and everyone.
My previous assessments were mistaken. These people don’t just “feel nothing” as they hurt and destroy others, it actually gives them pleasure.
I don’t understand enough yet to know exactly which aspect pleases them enough to motivate the cruelty, though. Is it your actual pain and suffering? Is it the control they feel knowing they can inflict such pain and agony onto another person? Is it the satisfaction they get when they’ve taken bits of your soul and crushed them in their hands laughing until they’re dust ? Is is the sense of accomplishment they get knowing they’ve completely snuffed out all the tiny desperate-to-survive slivers of light inside your spirit?
One man today actually compared this to a bad date. You know, when he goes on a bad date with a gold digging bitch, he doesn’t make a fuss. He just takes them to an expensive restaurant and leaves after they order an expensive entree, then just never talks to them again. It’s that easy. Just be quiet and move on!
Yeah, that’s such an accurate analogy of trying to heal from narcissistic abuse and reclaim and rebuild your life after mass destruction! Just walk away from those people. Just don’t let them in your life . It’s THAT simple!
You need to just let it go and move on quietly with your life.
Meanwhile, I was quiet growing up abused, then I got free and decided to work on myself and my own shortcomings and faults rather than blame Mommie Dearest for how fucked up my head and heart and self esteem was. I quietly moved on. Straight into the arms of another pathological narcissist just like her. You know why? BECAUSE I JUST LET IT GO AND “MOVED ON”… because every fucking stupid mindset I’d learned came full circle back to everything my sociopath mother had spent my life convincing me: I’m unworthy of love. Love is only real if it hurts. But I must have deserved it. I’m only lovable and safe when I’m quiet and don’t complain and accept my due punishments, whatever they are. I just have to try harder to be better and if I try to be perfect then maybe I’ll have earned a tiny right to be loved and accepted, maybe I’ll get lucky enough even to see a flash of kindness if I’m really super convincingly quiet and accepting…a second of kindness perhaps for my fake persona that I have to wear convincingly in order to be loved at all…even cruelly “loved”.
Why can’t you just let it go? Ummm… like I let it go when he pinned me down on the floor and spit on me and choked me when I was 3 months pregnant after he came home from being out all night screwing another woman and I dared to ask him where he was because I’d been up all night scared he was injured or dead ?
Like I let it go when he spit on me and my infant child as she nursed at my breast for asking what a woman’s clothing receipt had been for? After he had told me months earlier that he “needed me to start holding him accountable for his actions ” if he was ever going to “learn how to be faithful”?
Like i let it go when he admitted to his sex addiction counselor that he even though he’d told me I was crazy and paranoid for months, that yes, indeed, he had been cheating the entire time and then coming home to abuse and belittle me after he did it? And confessed that he was so scared we were having a girl because he might be sexually attracted to her or her friends once she was a teenager?
Like I let it go that I didn’t have food for almost two full weeks when I was 3 months pregnant with our child and that wasn’t his problem because he was in sex addiction rehab and was “dealing with hurtful childhood memories” that had caused him to be an abusive cheater all his life?
Like I let it go that I asked Mommie Dearest to loan me $25 for groceries when I was 3 months pregnant and hadn’t eaten in almost 10 days and she told me, that’s what welfare is for…?
Like I moved on and left him asking for nothing but my child and my freedom to prevent her from seeing a man ever treat a woman with the disdain, disrespect, and cruelty like her dad treated me?
Like I just moved on and didn’t enforce child support so that he could have an easier time seeing his kids in another state? So that I wouldn’t make him resent and punish his kids for having to pay child support to their mother for them? So I struggled and fought to raise two kids by myself without his physical or financial help while he bragged that the amount of money he made was “obnoxious “… while I was trying to decide if I could splurge on name brand macaroni and cheese for the kids this week? All so his life would be easier and I could convince myself I could keep my kids safe as long as I didn’t rock the boat or upset him or force the issue of responsibility, truth, or child support?
Like I just walked away and “moved on” when my mother came to my hospital room in the ICU when I wasn’t able to speak or move on my own after a massive stroke and told me I “deserved what I fucking got”? 4 hours after having a brain blood clot, going without oxygen for an hour, and finding out I was pregnant, all while lying on an emergency room table not even understanding what in the fuck was happening ?
Like I let it go and just moved on that when I was hospitalized for three full months unable to walk or feed myself or sit up in bed on my own, neither my children’s father or my mother (who love these kids sooooooo much) stepped up to help with my 18 month old baby at home? That my 60ish dad had to take care of my baby himself alone? Plus take care of me too, like an infant when I was released 3 months later? That no one but my dad stepped up to help during a severe physical trauma while I was pregnant and the years of physical rehabilitation it required afterward just to develop the skills movement and brain cells to reconnect in order to just be able to pick up my child and hold her in my arms?
Like I just walked away and “moved on” to find another place to live after my children’s father deceived me into trusting him and then deceitfully stole my house that was never his and that he hadn’t paid for at all? Like I just replaced everything we’d ever owned after he told me I had “30 days to get the kids and me back to our home, forcing me to choose between everything we’d ever owned and the home we loved so much … just to go ahead and take our home anyway when we arrived 3 days later in plenty of time of his threat? So then my children and I forfeited everything we owned in the world and still he scammed our house from us anyway because I’d trusted him earlier to have his name on the deed even though we weren’t together? Because I’d stupidly trusted that he cared if his children had a roof over their heads more than his fury to punish us for not doing what he wanted us to do? Which was allow the very abuse I had left years earlier to protect our children?
How many times are you supposed to walk away and just “move on” from the horrific abuse and terror and devastation these people go out of their way to inflict upon you, your life, and everything you love…. EVEN WHILE YOU’RE QUIETLY JUST “MOVING ON”?
The abuse never stops. Somehow they find a way to keep hurting you as long as you live and you’re quietly trying to just stay out of their radar of torture and cruelty?
But for fucks sake, start talking about it and it’s not 5 FUCKING minutes before I’m defending MYSELF for perpetuating the “drama” by not just shutting the fuck up about it and moving on…Again .. and again… and again… from their destruction, lies, and abuse.
I’ve fallen in love with the artwork of Jean-Baptiste Mouton. He is a talented genius! So many of his photos resonate deeply for me in depicting the sense of grace with horror in a way that makes me feel as though he can see the defining conflict and depth of misery of a life with a pathological narcissist. I get the sense of innocence defiled and a horrific mental hell that is the playground of narcissistic sociopaths. I think of the innocence of children living in times of war where the very nature of it all goes against all things childlike and sweet, portraying a definite contradiction that simply is no place an innocent mind and heart can function or survive in tact.
The need to breathe. The desperation for safety when the very air you must breathe every day is toxic with confusion and bitterness.
For 16 years, I lived in toxicity, desperate for fresh air, love, and security to just be…. to be me.. to be silly…to be happy… to feel what I felt, whatever it was… to like whatever color I liked best in any given moment without snide comments about being a liar because yesterday I liked a different color best.
Once around the age of 7, I had gotten in serious trouble for not closing the kitchen cabinets all the way. I had left them just barely open, as close to shut as I could get them without them making a clicking sound and waking up Mommie because the Saturday prior, I had gotten a pretty severe spanking for closing the cabinets after taking out cereal, a bowl, and a spoon to eat it with. I hadn’t tried to be noisy. The cabinets had magnetic closures which pulled them to shut when the door was at all close to the frame and the click they made was inevitable.
Mommie always slept in so it was up to me to get my own breakfast in the mornings, I would never dare to wake her just because I was hungry!! So after getting a spanking for the sounds the cabinets made when the magnetic piece clicked against its frame, I was scared to close the cabinets all the way at all this morning. I very carefully closed them as close as possible without getting in range for the magnet to pull it shut the rest of the way. This took some effort, but I was happy to do it and felt proud of myself that I was being so quiet getting my breakfast for myself.
It backfired though. As I was finishing my cereal, Mommie woke up anyway and came into the kitchen. Feeling confident I had been the perfect angel of quietness, I smiled my most cheerful smile and said, Good morning, mommy!
Mommie was furious! You left every GOD DAMN cabinet in the kitchen open! What the hell is the matter with you? And she yanked me up from the chair by my arm and started spanking me as she screamed this at me. At 7, I already knew better than to answer her furious questions. I knew that I never answered them right and somehow I always made it worse by trying. I said nothing about how I’d learned my lesson the Saturday prior about how noisy the magnetic cabinet closures were.
I cried though. I wouldn’t learn not to cry at being spanked or being frustrated or being scared until I was exactly 14. I didn’t yet understand how my tears fed her fury like a steak thrown into a pit of ravenous wolves. So yes, I was 7 and I cried while she spanked me.
A few hours later when she was back in her room applying her makeup and I had calmed down from crying, I ventured cautiously into her bedroom to ask if I could go for a walk outside in the woods behind our house. Even as a very young child I was drawn to the serenity of nature and solitude. And I knew it was a good idea to reflect on the error of my existence and my every choice in order to try to understand and hopefully realize wisdoms and how to make good choices that might make Mommie smile and be happy with me. Nature and solitude were like my gas masks of safety, the only place I knew where I could breathe easily.
This was my intent today now. To spend my Saturday quietly in nature, alone, where I couldn’t make mistakes or annoy Mommie at all, so I bravely asked her even though I knew she was furious with me and my stupidity, if I could go for a walk in the woods.
Mommie flipped out again. Screaming at me that she WASN’T STUPID!, she HADN’T BEEN BORN YESTERDAY!, and she demanded to know WHAT BOY I WAS MEETING IN THE WOODS?!
These questions really scared me because I didn’t have any plans to meet any boys in the woods. And I also was wise enough to know that denying the accusation was equally dangerous because it would be considered the same as “calling her stupid”.
There was no right answer to this line of accusatory questioning where she “already knew” the answer/the truth / whatever. So I said, I’m not meeting a boy Mommie. I just want to go for a walk outside by myself because I’m sad that I didn’t close the cabinets this morning.
Ohhhh the rage! I was not allowed to go for a walk, I would go “STRAIGHT TO MY ROOM “ because I was “giving attitude ” and “insulting her intelligence ” and she was just “tired of looking at my face already”.
I went to my room and wished I could be like my older sister and sleep til noon so that I could have avoided making Mommie so mad twice already before 11 AM. At least I didn’t usually provoke and infuriate her while I was sleeping… not usually at least.