Don’t Fail Me

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I have exacting standards. It is important to do so in order to achieve success and make my mark on the world. Owing to this, I hate being let down. If you tell me that we are meeting for lunch at 1pm then I expect you there at 1pm. Politeness is the punctuality of kings. If you are late you are telling me that you do not value my time. That is unacceptable. If you explain that you can deliver the product I want, the way I want it and in the colour I have chosen, I expect you to adhere to that. I am not interested in excuses. I will exert my influence as far as I can to ensure that what I have been promised is provided. I will cajole, coerce, persuade and harass to ensure the outcome is as was confirmed to me. Hotels, restaurants, shops, online providers, sporting venues, bars, people, products – all of them have been subjected to my precision and desire for high standards. I provide excellence in my profession (of course aided by a legion of underlings but it is at my direction).

Nobody likes to things to be wrong do they? Nobody wants a blue car when they asked for black. Nobody wants the wrong name or age on their birthday cake. I am sure I am not alone in my desire to achieve error-free services, goods and people. That is a laudable sentiment. Should I fail to deliver on my promises then it will be because I have been let down first. I have an aversion to disappointment and my failing can only arise as a consequence of the neglect and negligence of another. Each and every day I strive to ensure that I am not left flailing in the wind, as dejection cuts through me as a consequence of having been let down. It cannot happen again.

Where does this demand for delivery and high standards come from? It comes from my dread and fear of being let down. I cannot stand it. It breaks me in two and rips open a wound that has never properly healed. Being let down undermines me, makes me feel unwanted, unnoticed and unappreciated. All things which are anathema to me. He let me down all those years ago. I relied on him. Well, we relied on one another. It was, or at least it was as I thought, an unbreakable bond. I looked to him and admired how he carried on, when all hope seemed to have gone. The towering waves of misfortune and misery would crash against him but he was always unbroken and unbowed. He said that he would always look after me. He told me that he would protect me against those slings and arrows of outrageous fortune. I knew the world was a dangerous place, a cruel domain which showed no mercy and took no prisoners. I had seen with my own eyes what this place had done and could do. I was under no illusion as to the harshness of the vagaries of treading along the mortal path. He listened to my hopes and fears and he understood them like no other. He made me feels safe and wanted. I hung on his every word, mimicked what he did and pledged my unswerving loyalty. He accepted my fealty with open, gracious arms and I fell into them, safe in the knowledge that nothing could tear us apart. He promised me that,

“I will never let you down.”

I still hear his voice saying those words. But he did. He left. He let me down.

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54 thoughts on “Don’t Fail Me”

  1. The missing element at the heart of the whole matter, it appears, is a special, unconditional love without risk to us. If someone who gave us that during our childhood is gone, or as for some others, never was, then we will try to recover the sensation through you, or through a succession of you and others like you. When we get it from you, the energy or fuel is positive.

    At the same time, we don’t believe in it. We know that it’s really a dark illusion, a fairy tale, a transitory, ultimately false ideal, at least that’s because whenever we test it, it always seems to turn out that way. Must be human nature. We take it from you, but we give you only a simulation, as we’ve learned not to trust. The moment we see your level of provision starting to drop, it’s called into question once again. We preempt you. We call your bluff early. We provoke you. We control the inevitable decline. We make it be at your expense instead of ours. We get negative fuel.

    Either way we get what we need and avert disaster.

    The negative fuel is better than the positive because it’s real. It flows from your pain, hurt, and sometimes fear. All of these we know are real, as they were our own creation. The love and the delight, that was only a transitory illusion.

    The truth is there is no such thing as a risk-free love. We cure this problem by forcing it into existence for ourselves by subterfuge. Its architecture is in the form of a Ponzi scheme in which only you fall, as we had already burdened you with 100 percent of the risk.

    1. So true Triad, particularly your last paragraph. Beautifully written. Indeed, there is no such thing as “risk-free” for either of us, from either side. I like your comparison to the Ponzi scheme, very much a con of many.

      1. Thank you Indy. We make love into a risk-free proposition for us, as we set it up so the real love flows in one way only, from you to us. We avoid all the risk and take all the love. The faked out victim is left with nothing except a crushed empty hull and a whole lot of pain, and feeling like a total dupe in addition for having allowed themselves to be conned in this way. There is a lot of shame in store for them afterwards.

  2. I am very sorry, HG, for your loss. I’m surprised you shared this information here. Does it make you feel at all vulnerable to have disclosed this? Is it at all cathartic for you to re-visit and share this experience? I think u are safe here. You have helped us (your subscribers) to feel safe.

    1. Not especially NN because I do not know you. I would ever share such information with those I know, to do so would be to admit a weakness and that would not do. Is it cathartic? Yes.

  3. But, yes…some do truly fail others- and do not care. It’s so much worse on a young child because these are very trusting, impressionable, and vulnerable.

  4. Was it a childhood friend that passed? My ex N told me about his best friend that passed at the age of 9 of leukemia. He was still so sad about it.
    I’m sorry you were let down, this was so sad to read.

  5. Im sorry for what you went thru HG. Im new to your blogs and havent read your books yet. Past experiences can definitely be painful and mold the way we are and very severely. I hope in time youre able to heal whats happened 💓
    Ive found that this statement “dont fail me” to be unattainable bc we are set up to fail them before weve even met them. Even if you did everything right you cant not fail them. They wrestle demons within themselves and will never be happy with any person bc they arent happy within. Ive come to accept this. Its a hard pill to swallow especially when they blame you and put on their mask for others full time. We become their emotional punching bags bc were the ppl that failed them both past and present. They lash out at the ones they are closest to. Youre set up to fail before youve started. It sounds harsh but its true. So if you stay with a narc you have to accept this and its a hefty pricetag. You eventually lose yourself completely and in the end fail yourself

  6. Once upon a time, Mr. Tudor was loyal and devoted. Once upon a time, Mr. Tudor was a knight in shining armor.

      1. Thanks!
        I was just making sure I didn’t miss this story anywhere just like the hand holding one I’m waiting for.
        I have plenty of patience and am looking forward to your stories.

  7. I remember the first time I read this one and was broken hearted for your loss. I still feel for the little boy. I’m sorry he left you, that he didn’t have more life in him. How old were you when he died? If you feel comfortable sharing, what did he die from? Was it by his own hands?

      1. Hi PTSD,
        Kind of. His father died when he was 9 and figuratively yes, PTSD, his childhood protector and in essence his childhood died too. (Assuming here) The boy still lives in HG, I see glimmers of him on this blog. It makes me smile when that boy peeks out.

      2. Twin brother… ? Sorry to ask, your story just has so many similarities with the one my ex N told me. He lost his twin brother of leukemia as well… and his mother told him it should have been him that should have died (since they both had/have leukemia), not the brother… so cruel and heartbreaking.

      3. That is quite alright Ollie. No, my two brothers (well one and a half really) are still around. I understand the nature of that comment all too well however.

      4. I’m sorry you had to hear that from your parent, it’s unbelievably cruel and sad. He told me his mom pretty much resorted to drinking after that, leaving him and his other younger one-armed brother and sister to fend for themselves while his dad worked on movies. He was pretty much raised by his grandma, who loved him but also had a drinking and drug problem and gave him heroin at a young age… crazy to believe things like that can happen to young children. Your story just reminded me of what he had told me, plus he was born in England as well and then came to the US at age 15.

  8. If You could know how much we wish not to fail You…. it’s not our fault the fuel bores You after some time 😢

  9. I don’t think this was your father, because he always thought you could fend for yourself. Is this the person you were close to as a child who was taken away abruptly?

      1. So there is 1 person from your childhood that never left you down, you felt safe with, and their departure from your life was partly caused by your mother?

  10. Are you talking about your father HG? He was supposed to protect you from your mother’s abuse but he let you down. As a result, you became what you are today.
    It’s so sad for any child to bear. 😞

  11. HG, I think it would help if you did not take everything personally. It is understandable that you get triggered and dragged back down memory lane to feelings you would rather not relive. I think it’s amazing that you can admit and write about this, that’s a huge step. Are you talking about your father in the last paragraph?

    Yes, someone being late might be a sign of disrespect. It might just as well be caused by heavy traffic. Surely, that has happened to you as well. How would you feel if you were attacked for something that was beyond your control? That’s not fair, is it? We have to know the context, the cause, the truth of the matter, before we react. The frequency of this happening might give you a clue as well. Once or twice is fine, but if it happens on a regular basis, I would assess the situation carefully and act. No words necessary, actions speak louder.

    We don’t know other peoples’ struggles, we don’t walk in their shoes. In almost all cases, letdowns are not intentional. Your perception just shows that your wounds have not healed, yet you can make the conscious decision not to act on these triggers.

    Your life is good, you are healthy and successful on all levels. Show some leniency towards those who wrong you on negligible levels. I promise you: you will feel better about yourself if you do. 🙂

    1. That’s true, purpleribbonhealing… but to me, INTENT is crucial. I distinguish between promises that are made in sincerity -and- promises that are made with deceit already in mind (which you only see with hindsight).

      Sometimes, circumstances beyond the person’s control result in this person breaking a promise. We may be disappointed or crushed, but that does not mean that the other person is at fault! That’s just life, it hardly ever turns out exactly as one plans.

      In the latter case, if it is done on purpose, forgiveness depends on how big the promise was, and how much it meant to you! Some things are unforgivable. Even if you forgive, your trust is broken – what have you got if you have no trust?

      Whether the person was sincere or not depends on the context. It may take some time and effort to get the facts and figure out what it all means. But once all is clear, you are able to make an informed and just decision. Took me quite a while to get there, one mellows over time. 🙂

      1. Promises that are made of intent to break are used by narcissists and can be 99.9% of intent so from my experiences I could not afford to believe any plans, promises that were spoken by the N. The probability of intent and a no show is that 99.9% so let down was the result until it is he who grew frustrated not being able to have me place my faith in any promise or promised plans of his regarding me. That would be his high, yet I am not sure how high he feels when it is he who is left out of everything due to his self sabotaging- no arrangements can be made based on his empty promises and forgiveness only enables it further. He gets off on making arrangements only because he is going to let people down at the last minute or not even bother calling them, although they could be considered sources for him to manipulate so it seems bizarre.

      2. They intend to break down trust as another excuse to excuse themselves whining that you don’t trust their words and maximise how it cannot be a normal relationship yet they took the axe to it. Boy who cries wolf many times is not believed and cannot be trusted so a stalemate occurs. Man who leaves bedroom in a dummy spit many times wanting to be left alone, is left all alone. They abuse on every level and in every way through manipulation of 100% to make it abnormal then seek normal! No what they seek is someone else to fool and once the shutter is open and all is seen as manipulations and strategies the beast only remains to the viewer and cannot be unseen.

      3. They make a promise, getting positive fuel from you watching you gleam with anticipation, thought fuel from knowing they will disappoint you soon, laughing inside at how easily you are fooled, looking forward to your tears. The bigger the promise and the more it means you, the stronger your reactions will be, which means: highest-potency fuel!

        He does not have to be present to manipulate, purpleribbonhealing! Just the fact that you worry about him (in the early stages of the ‘relationship’), or get upset and angry (later on), gives him fuel. He probably spends the time seducing someone else while you are on the phone trying to reach him to either ask about his whereabouts, worried sick, or vent your anger. Fuelling from two sources at the same time. How marvellous that must feel to him! He is still in control of your emotions even if he is not present, and every time the phone beeps announcing another missed call or a text message, he feels powerful. That’s how they tick!!

        The truth is: they are envious of our joy, because they cannot feel as we do. That reminds them of how broken they are inside… they feel INADEQUATE compared to us, and have to spoil and ruin everything we hold dear to turn their inadequacy into perceived empowerment.

        Sometimes, I do not know if I should feel pity or rage…

  12. Truth. He declared his “undying love” for me, and said he could not live without me. But, when I decided I needed to tell him my feelings about his triangulation, lies, and manipulations, he was gone in a hot flash of lightening. Had it not been so devastating, it would have almost been comical, in an insane sort of way. If he actually had a ‘self’, I should think that ‘self’ of his would have been very ashamed and embarrassed of his cowardice.

    1. Happy Sunday Mr. Tudor and all my lovely poster friends! Is there a way to delete a post? I see you answered my question elsewhere and I didn’t want to clog up the moderation queue.

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