It Simply is Not Okay!
Hi! My name is Renee, and I have been living an emotional nightmare. I have felt like I was married to an emotional time bomb. I never knew when he was going to go off and never really understood why. It was usually over the smallest things and things that most people would not find offensive. Things like telling him he had toothpaste on his mouth, asking him to scoot the car over in the garage, or asking our young son to help him clean up the kitchen. Why would these things offend someone so badly? Why these massive reactions? Am I just a horrible person for these things? I must be missing something here.
Then one day I discovered the word narcissist and, even more so, the phrase covert narcissist. Oh dear God! That's exactly what is going on here. My hands began to tremble, and my heart began to pound. But I have a 17-year long marriage, intended for lifetime, and 2 kids. What in the world do I do now?
This is my story. This is me, struggling with what to do for my kids and how to find internal peace for both them and myself. This story contains a lot of tears, anger, shame, failures and frustrations. But it also includes successes, triumphs, sacrifices, and contentment.
Like many, I grew up chanting the phrase, "Sticks and stones may break my bones, but words will never hurt me." And like many, I quickly realized that this was a bunch of crock. Words hurt!! They may not leave bruises and broken bones, but they certainly leave scars and broken hearts.
I found myself asking, "How can I survive?" Then I realized, I didn't want to just survive. I wanted to embrace life! I wanted to live NOW! I wanted peace and happiness, and I didn't want to wait to have it. Not one more single day!
If I can do it, so can you!! There is no magic in this. Just a constant determination to do the next right thing, whatever that may be. One day at a time is all that you have and all that you need. Sometimes it was merely one hour at a time. That's okay!
Join me on a path to regaining your health and your kids' health. Don't wait! Narcissism takes its toll on everyone involved. It's never too late, and it's never too soon. Now is the time!
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You might still be asking yourself, “Does this really apply to me and my situation? Am I in a relationship with a covert narcissist?” No one can answer that for you. Only you. But in order to do that, you need information and resources.
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This overwhelming effect of narcissism is simply not okay. We must join together and stand up for ourselves. This abuse, this insensitive treatment, this entitlement, this complete disregard for other people's feelings....This Is NOT Okay!!
There is nothing magical in these definitions and classifications. It is simply the extroverted personality type versus the introverted personality type.
When we think of narcissism, we tend to think only of the loud and boisterous person. This is the person that is always the center of attention.
What we tend to forget is that quiet and shy people can be narcissistic too. All the underlying traits are the same. It just looks different on the surface.
Individuals with narcissistic tendencies expect special treatment. They feel that good things should come their way simply because of who they are. In a competition, they "expect" to win. In an evaluation, they "expect" high scores.Not because of anything they have or haven't done, but rather just because they "deserve" it.
They believe that they are superior to others and thus deserve special treatment. They expect more respect and more attention, often demanding treatment that is different from everyone else
Emotional safety is completely lacking in a relationship with a narcissistic person. Conversations stop mid-sentence when they walk in the room. Everyone is afraid to mention anything because everything seems to be capable of setting them off.
Talk about walking on eggshells!! No subject is safe to discuss around them. No topic or issue is immune to their defensiveness and arrogance.
You avoid conflict with them with everything inside you. Analyzing every thought a hundred times before it ever comes out of your mouth. Because you know that once conflict occurs, there will be no resolution. You never reach that place of genuineness and peacefulness that occurs when forgiveness is both offered and accepted.
It's Not My Fault! Narcissists just cannot seem to take personal responsibility for anything. Nothing in their life is ever their fault nor is it their job to fix. There is always an excuse, a justification, a reason. "You made me raise my voice." "You made me hit you." But this person did this or that person did that and so on. You know, if there is always a reason that you are a jerk, then you might need to consider that you are simply a jerk.
They can't even apologize for the littlest things. Accidentally bumping into someone becomes a big scene because it is obviously the other person's fault and must be pointed out.
Round and round you go. No end in sight and no clear path ahead of you. You feel like you are wallowing with the pigs in the mud. Being trapped in one of these conversations takes you to the most lonely, desolate and painful place on face of this Earth.
If you have ever been in one, you know exactly what I am talking about. What are these conversations? Why do they happen? How do you cope with them? And more importantly, how do you stop them and prevent them?
I have never met anyone better at dodging apologizing than a narcissist. They are experts at it. Their sense of superiority causes them to never feel that they are in the wrong. Other “inferior” individuals are always to blame. So for them to apologize requires that they lower themselves to an equal or lesser plane than others.This is something that they simply cannot do! They will tap dance, side step, spin in a circle, and stand on their heads. But they will NOT apologize, at least not in any real and genuine way.
Getting the Help You Need
I woke up one day and realized that I just couldn't live like this anymore. Yet I am looking at a 16 year marriage with 2 kids. What do I do now?
Emotional abuse takes its toll. The stress on the body is real, and people are paying for it with cancer, heart disease and many other ailments.
It was time to put myself on a path to recovery, a path to internal health.And NOW!!
Covert narcissism is messed up! It is so twisted you feel like you are going insane just trying to get a grasp on what’s going on. It is so hard to pinpoint and impossible to describe. You can’t possibly explain it to someone who hasn’t experienced it themselves. Trying to makes you sound crazy, even to yourself. So now you question your own sanity. It is mind-boggling and exhausting. Many victims collapse into a pile of nothing and give up. I don’t blame them. I have been there many times. I know that pain firsthand.
What about my kids?!? When dealing with a marriage to a narcissist, the worry about the effect on the kids is real and intense!
Perhaps the ones that suffer the most at the hands of narcissists are the children. They are manipulated, controlled, and used. They are never validated or valued for who they are. Their developing minds and hearts are not equipped to identify this, let alone to protect themselves from it.
Horrified by the effect my husband was having on my children, I began earnestly searching for help. I absorbed books, blogs and articles day and night. I turned to family and friends, as well as a therapist. How do I help my kids?? I must know!
All that time and energy paid off! I am so incredibly grateful for all the hard work and all the help of my supporters. They are not destined to live a miserable life nor to continue the vicious cycle of narcissism. You can help them!!