I’ve connected with many women (and a few men) through this blog who are suffering through divorce with a narcissist. The road is long and it is hard. You find yourself staring into space and wondering what on earth you did to deserve such a curse to have to deal with such a wretched person. The narcissist isn’t mean and awful when you are doing as they wish. They are pleasant and giving and almost sweet. But once you turn away from them, or DIVORCE them, then the gloves come off and you see their scaly skin and all of the ugly warts they covered over the years.

Some of the most awful things come from their mouths. They will type the most ridiculous things and they will hurt anyone, including their own children, to get back at you. As a girl who’s lived this drama roller coaster (and who still is), this is why I tell you to only communicate in writing by email/text!!!

One of my e-friends, iamfindingaway, was appalled when I told her the story of when I kicked my ex out. You see, the minute I told him I packed bags for him and I wanted him to move out and wanted him to go think about his relationship with “the neighbor” and realize that this marriage is something worth fighting for, my ex ran to the bank and took our money–lots of money–out of our savings account. He didn’t care how it affected his kids. He didn’t care that I quit my job to work on our marriage “issues” and had no way to pay for things because he took the money. He only cared about covering his sad, pathetic ass. Typical NPD actions.

As I thought about this moment, there were many others that came to mind and I was immediately rushed back to how hard life was just after initial court date/beginnings of the divorce. My stomach turns as I think about each of them, but I want to share some of the stories for those of you out there who are dealing with the devil–literally. It’s NEVER easy. Ever. And I’m sorry for that. But you’ve gotta know that after the storm comes the sunshine. My life has been proof!

Here are a few of the highlights lowlights:

On our first Memorial Day post-marriage, I had plans to take my kids to see their grandfather’s grave. My ex’s father had died one year prior (an event that was a catapult into his mid-life crisis, if you ask me) and I told him I may take our kids to see their grandpa’s grave. He was vicious and controlling in his response:

I will ask you only one time to move forward with your life and not take the kids to my dad’s grave, or any other family things on my side. Taking the kids to MY dad’s grave and any other {last name} family thing is MY family and my business, not yours! If you would like to take the kids to your families graves that is your choice. I would never interfere and take the kids to your family’s stuff. I feel very strongly about this and am willing to get a restraining order against you so you cannot do this going forward. If I hear you have visited my dad’s grave I will be contacting my attorney.

Really? A restraining order to not visit a grave? I can laugh at this response now. But just after leaving a NPD person, you are weak and frail. When I read this, I was actually wondering if I was doing something wrong. Could he get me in trouble for going to the cemetery? Still can’t believe I let him bully me on this one.

There were numerous times he refused to take my son to his games because “my parent time is more important than his sports”

I want to be clear about Thursday. Are you “asking” me or “telling” me that {insert child’s name} won’t be at my house on Thursday at 5:30? Just to be clear with you that parent time is more important or takes priority over {child} going to baseball. This is not your decision whether or not he misses his games over my parent time. We have had this discussion too many times and I’m tiring of re-visiting the topic. In the future, I suggest that you ask me versus telling me he won’t be at my house when he is legally scheduled to be.

The man never budged. On many times I told him, “Please think about the children in these matters and don’t expect them to give up their activities. Their lives should be kept intact as much as possible. They should not have to sacrifice their activities because we are divorcing. Keep this in mind.” These pleas fell on deaf ears. He knew that if he threatened or didn’t take my kids to their sports, I would dance in circles to give him what he wanted to give the children their sports back.

He was angry that our kids had sports during his “parent time” and threatened and wanted his nights changed. I stood my ground and told him, “Our four kids are very active. On any given day of the week, the kids have activities. Their lives should not have to change because we are divorced. We agreed on Tuesday and Thursday visitation nights, and that is the schedule we will stick to moving forward. Their activities will be planned on every day of the week from now until they are 18. That is just how it goes. Your time can be spent at her practice supporting her, just as my nights with them are spent doing the same. I am at soccer, baseball, softball and football on my nights to support them. You wanting to trade because their activities mess up your time is not reasonable. Parent time can be spent supporting them. Consider {daughter’s} needs instead of only your own.”

On one occasion he actually told me he would remove my daughter from the soccer field if I EVER showed up at her practice during “his parent time!” How absurd! Really?

FYI- you are legally obligated to deliver {insert daughter’s name} (and the other kids) to me on my parent nights.  I will decide whether or not parent time is more or less important than her soccer.  The judge and attorneys already told you this on multiple occasions so don’t try to scare me with your BS. I will tell you that if you continue to show up to the kids practices etc. I will simply take the kids and leave, which is in my legal right. If you are unwilling to change days and I decide for {daughter} to miss a practice on a Tuesday and/or Thursday then so be it. I gave you the choice of making adjustments to help the kids and you said no. This has nothing to do with feeling uncomfortable with you there. It has everything to do with spending time with the kids without your interference. I know you have a hard time not interfering, but you should let go. Once again, this has nothing to do with you and everything to do with the kids. I am thinking of the kids, I suggest you do to. I can see you have the kids best interest in mind. What a joke! In my opinion you seriously need some help.

It’s bullying, abusive behavior at its best. Not only do you have to deal with control issues via the kids, but also regarding money. To this day, my ex refuses to pay for any of my kids’ extra curricular activities. Our divorce decree states “parents will split 50/50 the costs of all extra curricular activities” to which my ex added in the paperwork “when agreed upon in writing” because he didn’t want me to enroll them in “frivolous” things. Fine. But when the first payment for competition baseball rolled around at $500, he spinelessly responded via email “I DON’T AGREE.” To date, this man who played baseball through his school years and in college and helped to enrolled these kids in sports right along with me does not pay ONE PENNY towards their sports. He tells me to “take it out of child support!” Even though he knew this was a huge issue we discussed in mediation and he agreed to it. His conscience feels just fine letting me pay for all of it.

At first, it infuriated me. But now, I have a husband by my side who reminds me, “We don’t need his damn money!”

So how do you deal with an individual with NPD who is abusive, rude and controlling? My advice? You don’t. You ignore the beast and the threats, you let your stomach settle down and your anger disappear and you remember that you are strong and powerful and an amazing person.

enraged

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Setyoufree

TRUTH

It can be the most painful thing you’ll ever encounter, but it can also be the most freeing.

I’ve been deceived many times in my life–by many different people. Each time it was ugly and painful. Being lied to has to be one of the most damaging things to the human psyche. Mostly because you can’t explain it (well, sometimes we try to explain it away, but we can’t explain why someone would choose to lie to us). You have no control over it. You don’t understand it. And you certainly cannot fix it.

I don’t believe in lying. I am a truth teller. If my life were lived in the movie Divergent, I would belong to the group Candor. I’m not a truth teller in the rude, don’t-care-about-your-feelings kind of way. I’m just honest. Honesty may hurt someone you love, but lying to them over and over is more painful than the truth ever would be!

Why is it that people lie to the most important people in their lives? Why do men hide that they are speaking to an ex behind their girlfriend’s back? Why do women flirt when their significant other is away and deny it if they are confronted? Why do people sneak around, steal or cheat?

The answer: they are insecure.

My ex husband cheated on me because he felt old, undesirable, bored in his life, and he didn’t want anyone to know about it. He wanted to play the big tough jock role he’d always played so he needed a bit of a supplement to his ego in the dark of night where no one could see. This came in the form of the neighbor.

He lied to me time and time again. Even after I caught them texting (over 500 texts in a week). Even after I caught him at her house at midnight after he told me he loved me and wanted our marriage to work. Even after I found photos of them on dates in my safe along with $2,000 in cash. And even after he told me, “I never stopped loving you!” when I told him I wanted a divorce. Each lie was a ding in the armor of our marriage. Those dings can’t be repaired very easily. Lies always stick with you–they are in your head and heart and they don’t just disappear because someone says “I’m sorry” or “I’ll never do it again.”

Once you discover the truth, and you’re open to pay attention to the lies and deception, your life does indeed change for the better (but not until after the anger and desire to hurt someone leaves your body). Ya know why? Because if you are with someone who lies to you, someone who takes the most vulnerable side of you and uses it to their advantage to sneak around with another woman and meet her in the dark of night, you should be done. You deserve better. You’re better off alone than with someone who is insecure and deceptive and who chooses to not put your needs first–your need to feel secure and loved.

I’ve been lied to a few times since my divorce…by people I’ve cared about. Some I gave second chances to and some I didn’t. I don’t know if I’ll truly ever get over the lies. But I also know I’m not dwelling on them. I’ve learned the truth and I live the truth and I am free. I choose to be who I am and be secure in myself. If someone in my life chooses to lie to me, they are only hurting themselves.

 

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pregnancy2

I pondered posting the announcement of our pregnancy here on my blog and on Facebook. I debated just letting people find out naturally…either by word-of-mouth or by seeing my growing belly. But then I realized that this is a huge part of my life, and writing about my life is important to me–the main reason I began blogging is because writing helps me process, and this girl is definitely gonna need to process!

One reason I thought of delaying the announcement is that I’m typically the girl who keeps this kind of news to myself as long as possible (well, between me and my husband). What if something went wrong? It was almost as if I thought I would jinx something if I announced my pregnancies prior to 12 weeks–the “safe” zone. I’m weird like that. If something went wrong, I wouldn’t have to share the painful news with anyone and no one would know anything was going on.

But once again, Brandon showed me a different side of the coin.

The day we found out we were pregnant, he was jumping to tell my kids that night. I was so conflicted with telling them so soon. “What if something goes wrong?” I asked him. “Well, they’ll all be wondering why we’re crying so much and we’ll have to tell them anyways!” he replied, quick as can be. Good point.

There are more reasons I debated sharing the news so soon…

I’m 43.
My youngest will be 11 in July.
This will be my 5th baby…Our 9th child together. 4 his, 4 mine, and 1 of ours.

Sometimes people don’t think before they speak. Sometimes people are rude and judging and scoff at the idea of a woman having a child in her 40s. And a women who has 8 who is now having a 9th? Well, that’s just downright absurd!

I don’t want to hear the negative BS from people. I really don’t. After announcing my pregnancy, I’ve already heard things like, “Wow! Good luck!” and “Is this a good thing?” Wow. And these people are supposedly my “friends.” This baby is a complete blessing. It’s not a curse or a burden. This baby coming to Brandon and me is definitely meant to be. Do I care what people think and what they say to me? Of course not. But I don’t want negative energy coming my way either. C’mon people. THINK before you speak.

I’m in a place right now that I’m still wrapping my head around the idea of becoming a new mother again. I was stunned when I found out I was able to get pregnant at 43, and believe me, I know all of the statistics and percentages for mothers over 40. My main goal right now is to not worry and to give this baby the best start possible.

Things in our lives will shift. Changes are coming. And Brandon and I and all 8 of our kids are thankful for this blessing.

One more thing. Thanks to all of you for the well wishes and for all of the love coming our way. We’re getting ready for a fun ride!

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SharksJust when I thought it was safe to go into the waters…

The relationship my ex and I have reached is somewhat cordial. He allowed me into his home to speak to our son, and we don’t argue about things lately. I was starting to feel like I could dare to take off the face mask after the nuclear bomb went off. Was I actually breathing fresh air? Or is this all a dream?

Apparently it was a short-lived phase and very much a dream.

Sunday morning, the kids were gone to my ex’s and Brandon and I went golfing. All in all it was a great, relaxing weekend and golf was a great way to wrap it up. While on the course, I received a text from my ex telling me “I’ll have to bring the kids home tonight. My car broke down and I have to take it in to get fixed.” Oh really? That’s funny, because last time I checked, he drug out our mediation requesting that he get the kids on his weekends overnight, so he could take them to school on Mondays. And ya know, just because “life” happens and you have to take your car to the shop doesn’t mean that you just dump your kids back at their moms to make your life easier. (This isn’t the first time he’s pulled something like this–telling me what he will do and I have to accept the change of plans.)

I politely replied to him and explained that he and his wife would have to figure out what to do, because I had plans and our decree states he takes them to school on his Monday mornings so he needed to work it out.

His response was short and curt, “Sorry, that won’t work. They’ll be home tonight.”

The line was drawn in the sand.

Do you know how many damn lines are drawn in the sand by this man? It’s obscene!

After his response, I stood my ground and shot a text back to him stating, “I’m not discussing this with you. I won’t be home tonight and per the decree you deliver them to school tomorrow.”

End of conversation.

Until 9:30 pm that night…

My 16 year old son called me and said, “We’re almost home.” I asked him, “Home. What do you mean? You are supposed to be sleeping at dad’s.” He said, “No, dad’s car broke down.” I asked, “Where’s your dad now?” My son said, “Well, we all went to the baseball game and dad and {insert wife’s name} drove home already. I’m bringing everyone home.”

What a prick.

My ex put my 16-year-old son right smack dab in the middle and took the chicken-shit way out and ran home to ignore what was really going on.

My face flushed with anger and I felt the familiar feelings I dealt with when I was married and first divorced from this man. I tried calling my ex, but of course he wouldn’t answer the phone. My son was mad at me and didn’t understand why they couldn’t just come home, and my anger bubbled up inside of me. This man selfish jerk was so hell-bent on getting his night free that he sent the kids home KNOWING I wouldn’t be home for the night. He put my son in the middle and told him to drive home. My son had no idea I told his father “no!” so I had to explain to him that they couldn’t spend the night alone at my house. My son asked, “Well, were do we go? Grandmas?”

World War 3 has begun. I shot off a few texts to my ex telling him the kids would be returning to his home for the night and how pathetic he is to put his children in the middle of this. I fired off words telling him that it’s sad enough he looks inside my home and examines my life, but now he’s put the kids in the middle and he and his wife were sad, sad parents who put 4 innocent kids in the middle of a scheduling conflict and I told him that they see through his games and I would no longer make them go to his home as I usually have.

And ya know what? My pathetic, spineless ex disappeared for the night. He didn’t respond to anyone. Not to my kids who called him and not to me. But he did show his texts to his wife. And SHE texted me in anger. “You don’t know me!” was what I got. She proceeded to tell me it’s her job to have a key to houses and she was just doing her job and she loves my kids and blah blah blah. This woman is swept into a huge web of lies and control and she has no clue how he uses her as a pawn. And she has no idea what the truth really is. She seems to think I’m hung up on my ex and haven’t moved on. Really? Hmmm..let’s see. He wanted to see my house before I moved in and it’s me who’s not over him…okay. She’s so deep in his web, she’ll never get out.

My ex got just what he wanted. He pissed off his ex wife, lit everyone else in the family on fire to argue about where the kids should go for the night, and he just sat back and watched the drama with a huge piggish smile on his face.

My anxiety level reached new heights. It’s so difficult dealing with a psychopath. It’s even more difficult dealing with a psychopath who uses his kids as game pieces in his big scheme to get back at his ex wife.

I cried a lot last night. I threw things (well, I threw a bag of oreos…that was messy…and a waste of perfectly good oreos). And I’ve taken the gloves off.

I’ve found that the high road gets you nowhere. Being polite and accommodating doesn’t make people with BPD understand how to be nice. It doesn’t make the people who are the lowest of low step up to want to join you on the high road. It only makes them sling more mud and damage everyone and everything around you. They want it to be their way. PERIOD. There is no discussing and your feelings/plans/needs mean nothing to them.

I’ve defended this man to my kids, I’ve told them they should always go see him because he’s their father. When he’s been hurtful or mean to them I ask them to see the good in him. I won’t defend this person any more. I’m much stronger than I used to be and I now know it’s not my job to be the go-between between them and the broken mess he is.

They will see him for who he is and I won’t be able shield them from the truth any longer. I can only be there to help pick up the pieces of their broken hearts as they see the true side of a father who will let his control issues ruin his relationship with his own children.

The whole thing makes me angry/sad/frustrated/heartbroken. There is no solving the puzzle when dealing with BPD.

 

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