Remember back in grade school some smart ass kid that made your life hell and when you told him what you thought of him, he would sing, “I’m rubber and you are glue. Whatever you say bounces off me and sticks to you.” or another favorite was, “I know you are but what am I?”
As a young child you would get angry, perhaps cry,maybe even hit the other child and defend yourself. But no matter what you said nothing fazed the kid, he always had a come back, laugh, and when you tried the same lines, they just didn’t work for you, his words still hurt.
Fortunately most kids grow up and develop empathy and communication skills. We certainly aren’t expecting to have to deal with that kind of childish taunting as an adult but we found ourselves feeling just like we did as a child in the playground, frustrated, helpless to defend ourselves, crying, with our tormentor laughing at us, taunting us.
If you are still with the narcissist you probably haven’t figured out that; trying to reason with a narcissist, defending ourselves, or trying to make a narcissist admit any fault in the relationship is futile and will result in it bouncing off him and sticking to you. You accuse him of cheating, eventually he will accuse you, tell him he is a narcissist and he will research it and accuse you of all the traits of a narcissist; you may not believe it now because you are still thinking he/she is a normal person and eventually you will get through to them.
Trust me that you are not thinking clearly right now. This kind of gaslighting will drive the most sane person crazy. I can’t say I blame you because there is no way anyone could have convinced me he would turn against me the way my ex did. Deep down, through it all I truly felt there was a deep love for me buried inside him that he was terrified to admit or at the very least he had a conscience and could never lie about me so blatantly. I admit I felt superior to him because I was faithful and honest; he was the one screwing up the relationship, there was no way I could be blamed for the relationship failing.
Then came the day when he told me he’d had enough and it was over.
I said, “YOU’VE had enough??? enough what?”
He looked at me with disgust and said, “This”
I was furious, “You’ve had enough of this????? I have been faithful, I have been honest, you are the one who screwed around, you are the one who didn’t come home at night, who lied…….not me!”
He looked at me over his glasses and sneered when he asked, “And what did you do????”
Looking him right in the eyes, I was indignant, “I stayed.”
He spit out “Exactly” before he went back to reading his magazine and I stood there trying to absorb the enormity of three words. “I stayed” and “Exactly“.
It took a few months before I finally moved out, even though my ex said, “I don’t want you to be homeless so you can stay.” For whatever reason my biggest fear had always been being homeless and of course he knew that but I also knew that if I stayed it would be the death of me.
I had suspected he was cutting me down to his work mates but I had always conducted myself with class, honesty, hard work and wasn’t concerned with what he told his buddies. What I had not counted on and sadly underestimated was his vindictiveness and his ability to lie straight faced and be believed. He knew that all he had to do was put doubt into people’s minds, make a few anonymous phone calls, and act like an unwilling victim. It made me sick how he could play the victim, I had seen him do it with me about other people and now I knew he was doing it about me.
It took me a painfully long time to figure out that any one who decided they were going to “remain neutral” was not a friend of mine. I had never had a relationship where friends had to choose, I had never had a relationship end where I couldn’t remain friendly with my ex and I didn’t want to appear unkind or vindictive but I was constantly being put in the position of defending myself. What worked against me was the fact that I had remained loyal to him and not told people what was going on behind closed doors so when I defended myself to his accusations it all sounded like sour grapes. He had already told everyone I was a liar and crazy and I had stayed for 10 years and not said a word, so of course no one believed me. If it was that bad why did I stay, why didn’t I complain to anyone about him? call the police, go back time after time?
I kept thinking, he stole my identity! he had totally reversed roles and taken mine! He even used my own lines on me! Lines like:
“I can’t just shut off my feelings after we have a fight an pretend nothing happened.”
“Try putting yourself in the new girlfriend’s position, how would you like it if I was seeing an ex girlfriend?”
“She kept saying no one would love me like she did.”
“I am afraid of what you are going to do next.”
“She is trying to ruin my life, get me fired, destroy me.”
“She keeps trying to cause trouble in my life, destroying property, stealing from me etc”
It was infuriating to be accused of exactly what he was doing to me! but I knew the more I denied it the guiltier I looked. It was like entering the twilight zone. I had a couple of “friends” who insisted on telling me how happy he was with his new woman and all the things he was saying about me and what I was doing. It didn’t matter that I told them I didn’t want to hear it, they wanted to hear my explanation or defense against what he was saying, and I did play the game for awhile, until I realized that I didn’t need a friend who doubted my character and would listen to the shit my ex was spreading. I knew he was using them as a pawn to hurt me and to destroy my good reputation. Something I learned from being with my ex is; if a lie is told enough times to the right people, it becomes a fact in people’s minds. It’s a rather interesting phenomenon witnessed during the Trump campaign
That is when I decided the only thing I could control was how I conducted my life, I couldn’t anticipate what he would do next, I could only live honestly and true to my morals and principles AND cut all toxic people from my life and keep trying to be the best version of me I can be.
When I started looking for answers about 2 years into the relationship there wasn’t a lot of information out there. In fact 6 years ago when I started the blog there still wasn’t much information out there, I did a lot of research and from sharing my own experiences and listening to the stories of thousands of women and men, I consider myself to be a bit of a layman expert and I will continue to spread the word about narcissists, sociopaths, psychopaths, or whatever label you want to give these soul sucking vampires. I am here to tell you that any attempt to make the narcissist admit his mistreatment of you or feel any morsel of guilt or remorse, is not going to happen. In fact, anything you say will bounce off him and stick to you.