When I first began my blog and my facebook page I was amazed at how many people had been affected by narcissism and how it was truly a worldwide problem. I never expected in just over two months to have almost 6,000 followers on facebook and nearly 20 followers on my blog. I didn’t realize how much I was helping others in telling my own personal story of survival from narcissism until others began to tell me their own and had sent me messages in private or on public posts to thank me for my work and how helpful it was in their current situation with narcissism. Though our stories are all slightly different we all have that common bond of being involved with a narcissist and as time passed I realized the commonality between us was not much different other than the narcs involved extent and length of time of the relationships and the varying levels of abuse and trauma suffered.
For those unaware of my story it was similar to a fairytale. But it was more like beauty and the beast. I married a monster who appeared as a handsome intelligent, career oriented, family minded man but instead was abusive in every form : emotional, physical, verbal, psychological, and financial. I was married on a tropical island with a beach side wedding by sunset, and it was simply gorgeous. The narc worked full time five states away as I tended to planning the wedding and raising our medically disabled son born with vater syndrome. My narc only came home on weekends ( if that) so I raised our kids alone for the entire marriage. In hindsight I was caught up in the duties of being a new mom with a son born with problems that needed round the clock care, and ignored the warning signs that existed from the start. After our wedding we walked off to take pictures with our photographer who had to tell my narc to smile, hug, show affection, get closer, hold hands, and yes “kiss”. Can you imagine this on our wedding day that this would need to be stated to the new groom? Yet later on for the honeymoon when most couples would express their love, I spent it looking for my LOVE as he walked off and claimed to go for a run around a 20 mile long island yet disappeared for hours leaving me and our son alone in the hotel room after just saying our “vows”. It was supposed to be memorable, it turned out to be in hindsight another clue as I later learned he had an affair with a married woman just prior to leaving the states to marry and she became pregnant. I eventually located my narc amongst the women lounging at the pool while I was awaiting his arrival for over 2 hrs. Needless to say the night was full of emotions, but not of the best kind. That honeymoon further signified our relationship because we consummated our marriage and our daughter was born from our union. However, more signs went ignored as I noticed he wasn’t present for any births of our children claiming to be busy working, and never showed interest in helping me his new wife who nearly died with 3 high risk sections. The relationship was more one sided as roommates with me being Cinderella the dutiful housewife professing her faith to her husband at his becon call and him enjoying his newly “single” life as a “married” man. The entire relationship of 13 yrs had more bad than good, everything was a lie, full of empty promises, broken dreams, and heartache. Afterwards we had our third child which was not planned, and that ended our marriage because of adultery and continued affairs..
Fast forward 11 yrs into marriage, divorced, bankruptcy, unemployed, and having to go it alone with 3 children all under teen years. My ex took it all as he left us homeless after refusal to pay support/alimony, refused to pay medical/tution, refusing to assist in the raising of our children other than to take me to court to claim shared custody with only every other weekend visits. I had to file a protection order of abuse and was granted a 3yr order for which I was granted possession of our home during that time, however my narc filed a special relief hearing to try to have us removed from our own home, which he was instructed by the judge that his legal actions brought against us was illegal. This didn’t stop the madness as he continued using the system to try to gain revenge. I’ll never forget when the system failed us and while sitting awaiting support for over a year, w/o income, and having to live off credit cards to support our family the system than awarded my narc 21,000 wiping out arrearages of over 15,000 all because he paid our utilities, mortgage, and one years tuition forcing us to repay 200 month back from our support which was only $778.84 for family of four. Yes you heard me right..While I lived without the basics , lost our home, and had no income living off credit my narc was applauded for paying our bills. The house was inherited so we never received it, the houses all mortgaged to prevent us from receiving any monetary amount, and the home was repaired for termite damage from 30 years earlier further devaluing the property. Yes you are correct if you say it was all planned from the beginning as my narc new exactly how to work the system from day one.
In the end I had to garnish his wages, issue contempt of court, have him arrested for violation of our protection order and have him on probation with anger management and alcohol and drug testing ordered and mandatory. Our family was left with nothing but the shirts we had on from the thrift store, as we left it all behind at our former residence. We were awarded but have not received 55% of his pension, our name taken off a mortgage and replacement of the nearly 12,000 that he emptied from our 3 kids college funds and the only thing to date we received from our decree was the 8 yr old car in our possession (that he tried to take) this after 11 yrs of marriage. He kept the house, the rentals, the income from both, our legal fees were each our own along with our credit card debt, and the money we have yet to see including the pension and the removal of our name from the mortgage as he now is in contempt for that too. The affairs I later learned were at least one a year, the hidden adoptions that I have legal records of both adoption produced an additional two children along with my 3 kids so they have half brothers out there. Truth be told never ignore the red flags.
We now live on public assistance and have searched with a masters degree begging for employment that would pay enough to leave the public assistance. We have had to file bankruptcy and at every turn are reminded of the narcs evil ways and destruction as we piece our lives back together.
However, the worst was when I created my narc page to help others and learned that his new supply blamed me for his faults. People I called my friends that I thought were my friends turned out to be my foes who would back stab at a moments notice. Even when I came on board to facebook to help others it turned out that I had located a page that was using my material and not giving me credit. When I responded by asking they simply give me credit for my work, the admin of the page professed an abundance of anger, hatred, and animosity that escalated to the admin of the page making false accusations against me because they were jealous of my success in acquiring fans who listened to me tell my story and who believed in me. I reported their actions to facebook and some of their post but not all were removed. They accused me of paying to get likes which not only can I not afford but it’s against my morals and against facebook standards. They accused me of being a narc because I asked my page be given proper credit (which should you ever stick up for yourself or your beliefs this will always be their response) and accused me of having forced others into believing in forgiveness as a stepping stone for recovery which I noted is just one way to achieve recovery and doesn’t mean to forgive the abuser or their actions nor does it mean it’s the only way for recovery , it means forgiving “the raw emotions that were wrongly placed upon you” to find yourself and to heal .
I couldn’t believe anyone could be so cruel but the truth is that you sometimes have to remain guarded because you can never tell.
You have to stand up for yourself and your beliefs as those who are afraid of the truths will always tell lies to diminish your successes.
As for the storytellers, the enablers, the harem of loyal followers: I simply say thank you! Because I have never felt so strong, so empowered, as I did the day I left my ex narc for good 4 yrs ago. I never felt more genuinely true to myself than the day I read the stories of my fans and I cried happy tears knowing I was doing so much good in simply not remaining silent and in telling my story others were able to relate and know they too are not alone and they too can become empowered to not remain silent and tell their own stories of survival. I’m so proud for the courage, love, and support that victims and survivors show everyday. They are the heroes and they deserve the praise !! I created the page and my blogs to help others (I’ve been a f-t volunteer for 13 yrs and currently serve over 7 non profit organizations). I can only hope and pray that victims know how truly blessed and honored I feel everyday to know that they too are being empowered by hope, faith and love in the journey in life after narcissism. I wish that I could say I have a wild vivid imagination and I’m just good at make believe and story telling but until you’ve lived this hell and torture of being involved with a narc you can’t simply understand. It’s more than just a mere breakup and you can’t simply just “let it go” and “get over yourself”.
The greatest gift is in helping others and even if it is just baby steps they are still steps in moving forward to healing and recovery from narcissism.
I say to anyone who has been victimized to stand tall and stand proud. Don’t let anyone discredit the truth. Because the truth never lies and the truth always wins!! Victims are not to blame and their only crime was in loving a man or woman that was not capable of returning the favor.