Note from 2/28/17
Living unloved is like clipping a bird’s wings.
Being forgotten is worse than dying.
I made a little video in honor of my maternal grandmother yesterday. I had found so many old photos of her on my dad’s computer and I wanted to preserve them in the event that anything happens to me, so I figured a YouTube video would best keep them somewhere forever.
I sent the link to several family members, including my daughters before I recalled Savannah’s reply when I told her my mammaw (her great grandma) had passed and that I would pay for her and her sister to fly in for the funeral if they wanted to attend. Her reply was, “This isn’t a convenient time“.
Strange how this tiny little phrase was so very unlike my daughter and so very exactly her father. My children were sweet and thoughtful, exceedingly unselfish, and advocates for the less privileged as well as against bullying and cruelty. Nothing this child had ever said or done in the entire 13 years she was in my care would have suggested to me she would ever make such a heartless reply. Only a pathological narcissist would feel “inconvenienced” at the timing of a family member’s death enough to actually say, it’s inconvenient… I read this reply and felt literally nauseated at the striking likeness to a narcissist’s typical reaction and heartbroken deep inside at the blatant implication of what my child has become in the four years in her father’s care.
Apparently, the depth of selfishness and cruelty of a pathological narcissist does not subside, not even with death. Sad, too, that this was the only great-grandparent my children had left as far as I’m aware.
Aside from the narcissistic implications, this saddened me even further. It seems the circle of dysfunction and brokenness my mother began will have no end. Its sharp, jagged knives continue to slice into generation after generation.
My mother didn’t speak to her mother for years as I was growing up. Because of this as well as some added geographical distance, I wasn’t permitted to develop as close of a relationship with my grandmother as my cousins had. If mother didn’t like someone, her children simply were not permitted to like them either. And my mother had a plethora of various “wars” with her family members all her life and mine, which true to narcissistic form, heavily influenced my family circle and bonds (or lack thereof).
Although my mother told me many (conflicting) tales of the cause of these family alienations – all of which she was the poor victim of their cruel injustice, of course -I have been privy to facts which better and more sensibly explain the truth behind these things.
Regardless, I thought I would be the catalyst to end these sad and destructive familial fractures. Although I worried very much about my children even knowing the bitter, hateful, evil woman who despised me all my life, with my dad’s pleadings and my desire to be the bigger person, as well as my strong wish that my children have all the family possible to love them since I did not have that as a child, I allowed my mother to know my children. Mostly with an agreement with my dad that he would not ever leave them alone in her care or presence, which he agreed to (but did not honor I subsequently discovered after his death).
In yet another great display of irony, this relationship I allowed via my dad, greatly assisted in the destruction of my relationship with my daughter – a bond I truly believed could never be damaged, much less destroyed – not even by pathological narcissists like their father and my mother. I would give my children all the love, attention, and respect I did not get from my mother and in my ignorance, felt that created an unbreakable shield protecting my children and I from the dysfunctional alienation my mother had started decades earlier in our family.
It did not protect it. The strength and pathology of two narcissists with influence on vulnerable children who recently lost their patriarchal figure was evil and deceitful enough to break that bond I’d spent years building like a fragile twig. Another mistake I’ll never forgive myself for. I allowed them to even be in the presence of the deception and hatred of my mother. I allowed that, naively believing I was demonstrating being the bigger person. Even if that woman chose not to love me or be a good mother to me, how could anyone not love my amazing children? And how could I be hateful enough over her mistreatment of me to prohibit my children the luxury of having a grandma? The luxury which had been all but taken from me as a child? A luxury I had always envied other children having while I was growing up? I could not then, in good conscience, keep my children from having every ounce of love and affection from all the people in the world.
So, now they have all the love in the world, except they’re void of any affection, compassion, or love for their own mother. Thus, my mother’s legacy of dysfunctional alienation lives on in spite of my attempt to discontinue it.
And after all, death is just so very inconvenient for the living, isn’t it?
I am a naive, ignorant woman. I’m at the end and it’s my choice yet a teeny tiny piece of me still can’t comprehend this as reality. As though this is some movie where the happy ending comes at the last minute. Where my children call and say “OMG Momma!! I’m so sorry…the truth matters so much. I’m sorry what you’ve endured.. I love you.”
I wanted to make it perfect. A spotless house, pretty pajamas, the perfect letter saying all the right things….
But I think those were ignorant thoughts begging for a righteous, happy, lovely little pat ending to this nightmare. Some delightful made for TV movie where good wins in the end.
Me though? I’m watching Criminal Minds. Kinda in honor of how much Savannah loved this show… And in great irony, the last three episodes I’ve watched were about sexual criminals with a predilection for teenage girls.
Here’s my world : I’m “disgusting ” because I had sex in my bedroom with my boyfriend while my children were sleeping.
What’s *not* disgusting is having a sexual obsession with teenage girls…
I’m disgusting because I drank to numb my pain at helplessly watching my children hurt sometimes after our home was stolen by their father.
What’s “not” disgusting is stealing your ex’s home in an attempt to leave her and your children homeless … all “for their own good”. Because it’s okay to steal what’s not yours as long as you tell the people it was “for their own good”.
I stole a lip gloss once when I was 14. I still feel ashamed.
I’ve never once raised my hand in anger, but my ex has abused animals, women, and children, I’m sure “for their own good” though.
I peed in a parking lot once and I’m the worst mother ever.
Welcome to a tiny glimpse of my world.
Some days I want so badly to scream my story from the rooftops and just throw every sordid (and possibly boring!) detail into the air like confetti .
Other days, I wish there were even one person in my life who knew it all already and I wouldn’t have to struggle with words and sordid (or boring!) facts and stories at all. I realize at this late stage in the game after all the damage has been done and my eyes have finally and painfully been pried wide open to the truths of it all,that is no longer a feasible possibility or option.
So I challenged myself to try to wrap the whole thing up in one sentence…just one solitary sentence that might somehow encompass the feel of the whole thing. The entirety and bitter irony of my entire life to this exact point in time.
And this is my sentence:
They cut off my wings then crucified me because I couldn’t fly… and blamed me that I couldn’t grow them back from their mangled feathery bloody stub-bits that were left behind.
I read an article that made sense of my specific experience with parental alienation. My children were turned against me at 13 and 15 and while quite vulnerable due to the recent sudden loss of their beloved Papa. I know the level of pathological narcissistic qualities my mother and their father have. I realized while pregnant with my first child that I had indeed gotten into a relationship with the male version of my mother. They are cunning and confusingly efficient narcissists.
I grew up in desperate fear of turning into my mother or of sharing any similar traits as she. For many years I vowed not to even have children when I grew up because the fear inside me of being a mother like she had been was not worth the risk. I would rather die than treat any child the way I had been treated! For many years, I wanted to be a nun, thinking if I devoted my life to serving God, I could never hurt anyone like I’d been destroyed by her.
I’ve pondered so often if sociopathy is genetic. How much of narcissistic personality disorder is narure versus nurture. When I become unexpectedly pregnant and realized my baby’s father was pathological like my mother, I really worried. I worried that I would have a narcissistic child. I vowed daily that I would love and protect my child at all cost; that my child would know joy and understanding, fun, compassion, kindness, security, self esteem, encouragement, and love, love, LOVE.
So although the sequence of events was more horrific and painful than I have words to describe even, I have never once blamed my children for their cruelty and lies intent on destroying, demeaning, and tearing every single thing about me to shreds. I know the evil that was pulling them to do such things. I know it personally and I know it well.
I also know my children after raising them alone for 13 and 15 years. I know their hearts and their souls, their struggles and their loves. Or so I thought…
After the extent to which they have gone to assist in crucifying me, my character, my parenting, my career, and even my own childhood, I’ve had terrible moments when I wondered if I created monsters. Had I loved them too much?!? Was that even possible?!?? No. I just can’t believe you can love a child too much. You can’t possibly give children too much understanding or compassion. They’re children! Perfect, innocent, loving, amazing children whom are entitled to all the love, compassion, and understanding in the world!
Maybe the vicious streak was severe parental alienation and narcissistic brainwashing? Maybe it was genetically predisposed for them to be cruel and discompassionate? Maybe all the love in the world wouldn’t have been able to soften their souls when they got old enough to think like their father and grandmother that kindness and emotion are nothing but weaknesses to prey upon? Mere vulnerabilities of “weaker” people who are to be destroyed if possible and perhaps for no other reason than that you can destroy them because if they’re foolish enough to trust and weak enough to love another more than they love themselves, then they get what they deserve when you stomp on them and laugh in their face as they cry in pain?
That’s how narcissists certainly think. I’ve researched a great deal on nature versus nurture with narcissistic personality disorder, but I’ve come to no definitive answer. I only know my children weren’t abused or ever shown anything but love and compassion and accepting their actions against me has been the bitterest pill I could have fathomed ever having to choke down. I’ve rather believed it was brainwashing and survival mechanisms for them. That they were victims of this abuse exactly as I and maybe worse.
It’s hard to fully accept that when I see that my oldest is possibly a pathological liar with a vicious streak of cruelty that I’ve only seen in her dad and my mother before in my life. A hateful, punishing, extremely selfish nature combined with a quick and easy willingness to lie to get whatever she wants.
It’s painful to realize the level of this. And it’s been much easier to blame the narcissists that abused me in my past for her ugly behaviors than it is to blame her and allow myself to wonder if she is a sociopath as well.
I’m just not so sure anymore though. She has embraced cruelty and manipulation and lying at a rapid and efficient rate as to actually be frightening and deeply unsettling to my soul and wrenching in my heart when I picture her the first 15 years of her life… so precious, so kind, so sweet and loving, so easy going and sweet natured that I literally thought of her many times as an actual angel on earth and I couldn’t believe after so much abuse and terror and heartbreak all my life that God had deemed me fit to raise a child so perfect and precious and angelic like this one. And then one day a few weeks after burying my daddy, she was my abuser.
This beautiful, amazing sweet child of grace and love like I’d never known in my entire life, lies without conscience for no purpose other than to hurt and smear me as a human being, as a mother, and as a daughter. She is cruel and vicious and literally laughs at my pain. She seems to actually think watching me suffer loss as a mother is funny. She has crucified me like Jesus and burned me at the stake like a witch in Salem without a trial or even honest accusations. The more I hurt it’s almost like the more it feeds her fury and cruelty!! I’ve known two people like that in my life… two sociopaths… her father and my mother.
Then I read this article and suddenly it all became painfully clear.
Just thought I’d share a teeny tiny little piece of the “crazy” pie of my life these days. Btw, just so I leave nothing vitally pertinent and ugly about myself out of the slice of crazy pie I’m sharing here, my other pathetic unforgivable faults in addition to my disgusting “low self esteem” are drinking wine at 3 am in my living room while talking on the phone to an ex boyfriend after my dad died, and having sex 9 years ago with said ex- boyfriend after we had broken up!
Pathological narcissism y’all… it’s not a joke or a trendy insult. It’s devastatingly real and frighteningly, senselessly cruel. #WelcomeToATinyGlimpseOfMyNightmareThatNeverEnds
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.
Today is the birthday of the female who gave birth to me. She turns 67 today. I will always feel uncomfortable on this day. It’s a weird feeling to know there is a person out there whom I once shared a body with who not only doesn’t care if i live or die, but who actually gets pleasure from my pain.
As a child, I sensed her snide joy whenever I hurt either from her hand or another’s. I was a wise enough child to try to justify that in my mind and heart. I fully believed that was real love and I accepted to the best of my young and immature ability that when I “grew up”, I’d be able to understand better how that is love no matter how much it didn’t make sense to me at the time. My sick gut feeling I got regularly when this woman was ruthlessly and randomly cruel would be proven wrong the minute I matured enough to understand real love. After all, I was just a child… how could I understand such complex things as even love was supposed to hurt? And hurt bad and hurt regularly? How could I possibly know the right way to love a child? I was just a child myself! One day it would all be crystal clear and the words she occasionally spoke saying I love you would some day make sense even though her actions and behaviors didn’t feel like love to a silly little sensitive child like myself who probably was just extra needy of love and affection because I was just so unlovable and so very difficult to love.
As an adult, it never did make sense. I was 23 and had been in therapy since I first was freed from the mother at 17. After my first year of therapy and telling brutal truths (truths I hadn’t ever admitted even to myself before) about how truly horrible and unlovable I had always been, I will never forget the exact moment my therapist said the words, Do you ever resent your dad for not protecting you from such horrific abuse from your mother?
Immediately, I felt defensive of both my parents and guilty that I had apparently somehow inadvertently misled this woman whom was the first person in my world I’d been brutally upfront and honest about every single bad thing about me, every last little bad deed I had done and even the horrible thoughts of self pity and ingratitude I had felt so often throughout my 20-some years of life at all the love I’d been given even though I didn’t deserve any at all.
What? Abuse??!? No, you don’t understand Dr. Patty! I wasn’t abused. My mother loved me! There was no abuse?? I was not abused. I was a difficult child. I was born really bad and impossible to love. My mother tried really hard to love me and she loved me sometimes in spite of how awful I was born. And my daddy??!?? Ummm… why would my daddy have protected me from being loved by my mother? He loves me too. He wanted me to be loved and to grow up and be a good person. He loves me in spite of being born bad and completely unlovable too!! ABUSED? ME?!?? No! You’ve misunderstood ! Somehow I’ve tried to tell you every awful truth about me and you’ve totally misunderstood, Dr. Patty!!
I couldn’t understand how I had misled Dr. Patty so badly even by being 100% truthful no matter how embarrassing it was to admit what a horrible human being I was. I couldn’t grasp why she wasn’t confirming what I needed her to confirm- how lucky I was to have had a mother who loved me so much even though I certainly had never been worthy of any love at all.
This was why I was investing so much time and effort into therapy!! I was a “grown up” now and I was still sometimes ungrateful and immature enough to not feel like my mother loved me even though she’d said the words to me all my life, why did her actions still seemed senselessly cruel, demeaning, and evil? Those words that proved my intuition and understanding were just twisted and backward. Those beautiful words that proved what a wonderful and amazing mother God had given me… those three words, I love you.
Abused?!? I was not abused! I was lucky and so very loved! And now, I’m an adult and I need to understand that truth . I’ve waited my entire life to understand this is the truth of love. Love hurts . Love feels cruel and sad and very painful , but that is what love is!! Why do I STILL feel in my gut that it’s not love? Why can’t I understand what real love is? How can I be intelligent and still be clearly so immature emotionally that my mind and my heart are still in constant conflict? Why does my mind STILL try to convince me that love shouldn’t hurt when my heart knows my mother painfully loved me !? I was supposed to understand by now that my mother loved me beautifully all my life!! WHAT IS WRONG WITH ME THAT I STILL DON’T GET IT?
Dr. Patty, that’s just crazy…. I was NOT abused. Why would you even say that to me?
After this infuriating misunderstanding, I skipped my appointments with Dr. Patty for a few weeks. I was so frustrated that I had somehow misled her even by being brutally honest.
It felt like the time I was 14 and went to the optometrist. I answered every question and eye test truthfully and still I somehow “faked that I needed glasses”. I didn’t need glasses. I “just wanted attention because I was a needy, overly sensitive, never-satisfied-with-the-love -I-got-every-single-day kind of impossible and ungrateful child”. I didn’t need glasses, I was just trying to get attention. And ohhhhhhh boy, was my mother pissed at me for lying to the optometrist!! And livid that I had “cheated” on the eye exam and totally “manipulated the doctor” into believing I needed glasses when I didn’t. I was just trying to get more undeserved attention than I already got every day.
And now, I’d cheated and misled my own therapist too! I had to accept that I was so bad and so irreparably broken that I had done it again even though I thought I’d been totally FUCKING honest this time!
I was just fucked. I was hopelessly fucked.
It wasn’t until a few years later when I became a momma myself that I realized Dr. Patty had been so right. There was nothing in the world I could imagine more terrifying and utterly crushing than the sound of my babies crying or hurt or disappointed even. Then, I knew I had been in denial all my life. I had never even known or been able to understand love nor to what degree I would be willing to go to protect my child from hurt and harm until I looked into the sweet blue eyes of my two precious babies.
I knew love. It really wasn’t me!! The woman who gave birth to me had zero comprehension or ability to love outside herself or her bitter resentments or her furious seething anger at simply being forced to look at the light in my soul.
I have understood love all my life. And dammit, I would show my children all the love I could possibly demonstrate.
So happy birthday to the woman who doesn’t acknowledge my existence, who thrives on my miseries, who feels invigorated by my pain and struggles, who can’t tolerate anyone loving me, who doesn’t care if I starve, or if I die, or if I’m beaten or raped… happy birthday to the woman who spent 27 years showing me everything HATE, apathy, anger, injustice,and senseless cruelty is… who demonstrated clearly the fucking opposite of anything love could ever be.
After all, Mommie was really nice to me once when the janitor at my school put his hands inside my panties in the first grade. That was before I was truly bad and slutty and evil though… several years before my Shameful Panties.
Happy birthday, Mommie Dearest. I don’t wish you any ill will. My only wish for you is that all the “love” you showed me will come back to you threefold. You worked hard for that karma. And I want nothing less for you.
Happy birthday from your other, nonexistent child who could never get anything right in her life, who desperately just wanted to love and be loved by you.
Happy birthday to you.