Memories have been lapping at my mind like waves against a shoreline. Nothing necessarily repressed, just memories I’ve viewed (up until recently) through an observational, third person point of view. I find myself peering at them from a second person point of view as of late, like a friend observing events that occur in our lives. I have to admit, being in third person has kept things neat, tidy and linear. I haven’t had to really think about any of it. I viewed these memories as events along a timeline, no more, no less. As I begin looking at these events through the eyes of a “friend”, I am slightly dumbfounded. I find myself somewhat in shock. Looking at some of the things that have happened in my past, I’m quite floored by the behavior I tolerated … my “normal.”
I was asked after my last blog, “How is it that this personality disorder (narcissism) is not more recognizable by the one who owns it?” The answer is actually quite simple. Narcissists are the center of their own universe. They are never wrong and therefore nothing could ever be wrong with them. They are the sun and the rest of us peasants orbit around them. In most every situation they are the victim, a-l-w-a-y-s. There is no personal responsibility for what they do rather constant blaming. Everything is always someone else’s fault. Their truth is the only truth. Narcissists do not have the ability to empathize, though they learn to mimic empathy when it benefits them. These are completely self-serving, selfish individuals.
When my baby girl was born the delivery was rough, nothing like what I’d experienced when my son was born. On the trip home, after being discharged, I had severe back pain. Every bump and bounce along the road caused excruciating pain! It had me on the floor board of the pick-up in tears 30 minutes into the 60 minute drive home. When I called the doctor, he blew me off claiming it was likely back labor even after passing clots the size of grapefruit (instant relief from the back pain). I wasn’t feeling well at all, passing large clots regularly and voiced those concerns … for six weeks!
After my six week check up at the doctor I still didn’t feel well and was ignored by both the doctor and my then husband. The day after that check up, I filled the toilet with blood. I was light headed, queasy and scared. Here I was, home alone with an infant and a toddler and no one to call for help. I did what most wives would do, I called my husband for help. After a long pause (long enough I thought we’d been disconnected) he said, completely annoyed, “Jess, I’m really busy right now. You’re going to have to figure this out.” I know, I know, you’re thinking, “That’s absurd!” Yes, it was though at the time, it didn’t cross my mind that he was being a complete asshole. He was the sun and I was supposed to orbit around him, his needs, his demands, his everything. I told him I was concerned I might pass out and pleaded with him to come pick the kids and I up so I could go to the doctor. Again, a long, annoyed pause and then he said, “I guess I’ll send one of the guys to get you if you’re going to be such a baby about this.” I remember feeling ashamed and embarrassed that I had even asked for help. I hated the idea of “one of the guys” showing up to chauffeur me into town. What if I gushed more blood? Men are silly about periods, let alone this!!!
A couple hours later the kids and I arrived at his construction office. As we walked in I was met by a look of utter disdain. I felt so small. As I explained that I had left a message for the doctor, I felt a tight cramping in my back that almost dropped me to my knees followed by the now, all too familiar, gush of blood and tissue. Before I could move I was soaked and standing in a puddle of blood. I remember feeling clammy, light headed and seeing stars, the color completely drained from my face. As I looked up from the floor he was yelling, “Get off the carpet! Damn it Jess! You are ruining the carpet in my office! Go, GO, GOOOOOO!!!!!” My ears were ringing, I was startled, scared and beyond embarrassed. As the guys came peaking in to see what was going on, I waddled past them in blood soaked pants and shoes squishing like I’d just jumped in a rain puddle. How in the hell could a man who claimed to love his wife treat her that way!?! He was more concerned with his carpet and what others might think, than the mother of his children losing excessive amounts of blood right before his eyes!
I wound up in the hospital. I had been hemorrhaging as my body tried to flush a large piece of placenta … for going on seven weeks! As I lay in recovery, my beautiful nurse brushed my hair back from my eyes and told me it was the largest amount of tissue they’d ever seen removed. The fact that I had still been functioning fairly normally was amazing in and of itself.
I was taking attention away from the sun during this event. No longer was the universe orbiting around the sun. My problems, no matter how life threatening, were of no consequence to the covert narcissist I was married to. I was stepping out of line, forgetting my place in the orbit, by requiring his attention and help. I had broken rank and he was sure to make that known.
My story may be different, it’s not unique. I file most of the events in my past under the “Can’t Make This Up” file! The ‘Lifetime’ channel has nothing on me! My experience surviving the abuse of a covert narcissist has taught me some pretty tough lessons. My research and study in the disorder affirms what I’ve witnessed and drives me to share what I’m learning. My practice will offer healing to those at the helm of divorce and specialize in helping individuals who are healing from the traumas caused by these toxic individuals, narcissists. The horses are the rainbow under which the work will take place. I can’t wait!
Coming soon …