A Letter to the Narcissist – No. 61

RUMA LETTER

Your Royal Cerebralness,

You, at age 25, moved into my college dormitory. I was 19. The first time I saw you, you walked purposefully straight through the hallway, through the throng of boisterous students. You didn’t look at anyone, just walked above it all to your solitary space. You were miles above everyone. Like a moth to a flame, with no idea what drew me to you- every girl had their eyes on you and yet I was the only one who had the guts-  I knocked on your door and asked to borrow a broom.

How that led to me sucking on your fingers, neck, and ears, I will never understand. Never. It was like you were telepathically controlling me and I couldn’t resist. You had your eyes closed and head turned away- a posture I got used to seeing. Suddenly, you sat up and said “Someone’s playing with fire,” staring at me without blinking. You rarely blinked. (this promise never panned out the way I thought you meant it..it was a clear warning on your  part of something else entirely) Do I even have to mention that I dropped my very sweet and caring boyfriend like a hot potato in the hopes it would happen with you? You referred to me as “a redhead with the body of a pinup model” or “curves that won’t quit.”  but quickly added that you liked my desire for learning finding answers. I felt like a two-dimensional photograph on a calendar.

It was so tacky that as soon as I was back in my room, my friends and I had a laugh. You were a bit of an experiment to us. I had no idea that I was actually the one being dissected. You would talk about an ex that you had just gotten back with (long distance) and that’s why you couldn’t follow through. Then you would give me wine, beat me at chess (your favorite thing to do), and somehow get me to service you. This was not the way I behaved with anyone else and it disturbed me that it somehow always happened. You were very isolated. You were controlled. You were brilliant. The president of the chess club challenged you to a game in front of the dorm, and you wiped him out right away.

You dressed impeccably. Your genius had you graduate with highest honors. I was honored to be the one you allowed in to your high tower of all the girls in our school…except, how was it that when we ate together in the cafeteria, another girl gave me funny looks? The one you said was only a friend? Were you aware that I never believed anything you said? Would it have mattered?

What saved me then was that college was a busy time for me. I had lots of friends, was very outgoing and never concentrated too much on you, or you on me. However, I always found you to be an enigma. You would start to seduce me without even kissing me. Then, at some point, you would roll over, show me your back, and fall asleep while my desire consumed me. “You’re tempting” you’d say. This confused me even more. Your unblinking, flat eyes hid something very dark. I could never read them. The one and only time you kissed me, I suddenly felt a cold terror as you slid your tongue into mine like a snake, your eyes wide open. I felt at that moment the certainty that whatever you were, it wasn’t human. I faked some moans to get things ove rwith. You’d brag about those moans in the future. You slept naked, aside from always having your medical bracelet on your wrist- eggs and nuts being deadly for you. Is it telling that I took comfort in that?

I moved on to other people. We put each other on the shelf. I had decided that you were probably gay and conflicted about your sexuality. You moved away to graduate school, excelled and became top in your field. We chatted online sometimes, but you were on the sidelines. Periodically you would inquire as to who I was dating. Twice a year we would meet up for a day or a weekend, the same story- you’d be dressed handsomely, cook me a gourmet meal, and we’d laugh to some show we both loved. Then we’d end up in bed. No kissing, no sex (we never did have), you’d clam up and turn your face to the wall, again talking about that ex. I never bought it. I was sure you had emotional problems. When I called you an animal, you responded with a comedic tiny meow.

Even the way you spoke was condescending.  I never took it seriously- it made you look like a child. But subconsciously it had its desired effect. The way you spoke was as someone trying to sound human, you reminded me of an autistic girl I knew. I felt that below your facade there was hate, but could never see any proof.

I went on to lead my life and have a wonderful relationship with the best man in the world, G. Unfortunately, after three years I had to leave him for another country. At my going away party, you made a very unusual appearance. It was surreal to see you in person again. I had invited a girl we had known in college who was always interested in you- I was still with G and thought I’d do some matchmaking. I had no idea the punishment I was in for, the crime I had innocently committed by leaving you on the sidelines and introducing you to a peasant.

Ten Years Later.

I had left the country, and two years later married someone sweet and honest. I always loved G, but we couldn’t be on the same continent. When I got married, our very infrequent emails stopped- you didn’t respond. Twice. I figured you were insulted. Soon after that point, I didn’t have access anymore to email, I was living in an area where it was hard to find. I was out of contact with almost everyone aside from my family by phone. I loved our life, we had four kids. Had lots of friends and my own business. I still thought about G (in a healthy way), but never you. There was nothing of substance to think about.

Then- we moved to England. My British husband couldn’t bear the non-queueing ways of other nations, and we had to move. I couldn’t cope. The transition from equatorial sun to dismal darkness and constant rain brought me deeper and deeper into depression. Moving from a place where I had my own business. Where the culture gap was so large that I couldn’t make friends (death for an extrovert). It was at this low point that I re-connected (via now-accessible email) with my old friends from home, who I hadn’t been in touch with for 10 years. It was like no time had passed!

I started to have recurring intestinal pain.  The doctor was not helpful. I ended up seeking an alternative energy healer (which I didn’t believe in but was desperate). She said over and over again that someone I had a relationship with at age 19 had caused a feeling of rejection so deep that it was buried in my body. I scoffed. I couldn’t think of anyone. I listed the people I had dated. She “tested” and they all came up no. 45 minutes of thinking  later, I despaired of all help. Then, on the way out, you popped into my head. “couldn’t be x, could it? we never actually had a relationship” Oh, it was. It was you. She did her thing and I haven’t had a pain there since!

But it made me curious (this was the beginning of 7 months of hell). I sent you an email- acknowledging that you had cut off contact earlier but that I’d like to ask you some questions if I could. Your response was immediate. You denied having cut off (Odd. I knew that you had).I passed that off as you being weird, which you are- let’s be real. Not recognizing it as purposeful manipulation. I had just dived into a pool where an invisible shark was swimming.

My question was “What was all that back then? Are you gay? Was I not good enough?” Your response was full of magnetism. I felt myself being pulled forcefully in- how did you accomplish this!? You said no, not gay, just conflicted about his ex, and how regretted not having pursued me instead. You flattered me with words that were empty. And I could tell that they were. With barely concealed fury, you mentioned how you had come to my going away party. I couldn’t figure out what the veiled fury was all about. You started to send me many emails, listing my amazing traits and how you wished I were single. You said you were sorry for how you had treated me, that there was no excuse. What I heard was, “I’m saying that so you’ll let me do it again”

This is what terrified me- the fact that my logic was working fine, and yet my emotions controlled me. The voice of reason was small and in the distance. I started changing to meet with your approval. You chatted with me over gchat every day and every night- disappearing every few weeks on business (your phone didn’t work when you traveled?). I couldn’t relate to my kids, or my husband. I violated my religious beliefs and just kept thanking heaven that you were on the other side of the globe. I felt like I was living outside my body. I wasn’t present in my own life- I had given control over to you. I started to notice that you resented my achievements, whereas before you had lauded them. You tried to tell me you were taller than I knew you to be, just because my husband is very tall. You related to children as objects and referred to one as “it”. You caught yourself and made a joke out of it. I watched all your interviews online and drank them in. You were condescending, but I thought it was just how you spoke.

You said you hadn’t had a relationship in ten years aside from a brief one that left you catatonic when she left. (warning sign!) You gave the backhanded compliment “I can’t keep track of all your men”. When I dodged that with “men are one thing, G was another,” you shriveled up and whined, “well then where am I on the spectrum?”

“Nowhere. You never were” I replied. it was true, yet I remembered how you smelled and unconsciously bought my husband the same soap. It wasn’t until you mentioned it that I realized where I had smelled it before.

I couldn’t figure out why every time we spoke, I felt like my soul had been raped. Nothing to put my finger on. When you went missing for a few days (hiking?? right) I suddenly felt better. Huge warning. You started to falter. You’d brag about your radio interviews and I found it off-putting. I tried to tell you not to email me anymore, three times, and it never worked. You would say, “I’ve wanted this for so long” and I didn’t know that you meant revenge till later. I had periods of time from the college years with you that I couldn’t remember. “Probably for the best,” you said. Again, creepy. Whenever I asked you a clear question, you’d literally type nonsense. Very odd for such an intellectual.

All my friends said, “why do you even speak to that s**tbag? He was creepy then and he is now”. I couldn’t understand it. You seemed so magnificent to me, even as you pushed my boundaries little by little, destroying me and getting me to do things I didn’t think I ever would. I couldn’t see light. I couldn’t breathe. I was confused at how you didn’t mind my being married, even as you said: “I wouldn’t do this to another man’s wife.”

I begged my husband to help, to delete the email address and set up a new one. He couldn’t relate at all, he ignored it all.

The second time I tried to get rid of you, I told you that I was tired of trying to read between the lines, dealing with the emotional BS, and being objectified. Silence. I was free!!!!!!!! Well, for four days. Then came the first sign of “humanity”- the email written in such a tone I had never heard you use. it sounded normal! you said you were so sorry and regretted coming in-between me and my husband, listed reasons why you were so bad with expressing your feelings, and that really you just hadn’t wanted to admit that you felt more for me than a friend and that you were lonely as a bachelor…It was so emotive that I wondered if you had someone else write it! I carried it around and hid it under my pillow. I was like Chamberlain, waving around the document from Hitler.

I teetered on the brink. I knew if I didn’t reply I’d be home-free. I didn’t know what I was dealing with, it was just instinct. And yet, I replied. I said it was fine, no one’s fault, and that it was my depression about my situation that left me open to your wiles. I realized that may have been offensive, so I followed it with “hope i haven’t hurt you in some way”, eliciting the poisonously condescending  “Oh, don’t worry, kitten,  you haven’t hurt me at all. I’m just glad there are no hard feelings” (because he needed me to stick around for my punishment!)

I think that lasted a week because it seemed that I wasn’t allowed to do the cutting off. It had to be you. But I could feel the difference that last month. It was very calculated. You had a new, gorgeous apprentice helping you twice a month. I prayed that you’d turn your attention to her, or at least just die in a plane crash and save both her and I the annoyance. I could tell you were forcing yourself to string me along even though you were into her now, because you wanted the maximum effect. I knew it! and yet, I couldn’t stop! Finally, I decided to call you. We agreed on a time. I wanted to tell you in person to leave me alone. We rarely spoke on the phone.

No one picked up. I thought it was my calling card. I tried a few times. I texted you. You said it wasn’t ringing on your end. I tried a few more times and then went and watched a movie. An hour later, I received an email from you saying that those missed calls showed you how obsessed I was. I should never contact you again. (I knew it was you projecting but couldn’t believe you were capable of such a lie!)

I knew this was planned, and a huge wave of relief washed over me- free at last!. What I didn’t expect was the aftermath, the withdrawal. Nightmares, shakes, panic attacks- why? It was the feeling of having been so close to a shark and of having a relationship with someone who never existed.

Why indeed. A friend said, “he sounds toxic”. What the hell does that mean? I looked it up and eventually found HG’s website. I read for days. The disparity between what you said and what my guts told me had messed me up big time. The realization of how you planned it, and never even hid it from me! You often told me up front! Remember when you once pointed out that I was the only one who asked so many questions, but that you didn’t mind. (often you didn’t answer, other times you loved the attention). I said, “do other people have trouble understanding you?” you replied “Well, I understand me, but I live with me.” When you were ill and I asked what was wrong with you, you replied, “people have been asking me that for decades.” Wonderfully dark sense of humor.

I had wanted to be devoured by you. You reminded me of my father, but smarter.

I realized I had dodged a bullet in college, and ten years later, dodged a cannonball. But not without being injured first. The panic got less and less over a month, and it was made easier by my consciousness being returned to my wonderful family. Then the guilt- I had betrayed my family so easily. HG’s website helped me to recover quickly, and I learned to delete my email addresses. Although, being a secondary source makes me feel a bit more secure that you will leave me alone.

I still wake up with hatred towards you- for taking something that never belonged to you, that you never deserved. Did you know that I had reconnected with G at the same time? That talking to him was never over text, all by phone, and the contrast of feeling real humanity is the only thing that saved me? You told me I shouldn’t speak with him. Sorry, that’s the realm where you have no power. He was, and always will be, my love and best friend. He helped me get perspective. We would laugh together at your words, and you never knew.

Its only three months later, but the horror of getting out of a pool, looking down, and seeing that there was a shark there the whole time still sometimes gives me the creeps.  I pine for someone sometimes, someone who never existed. But now I no longer mistake him for you. I had started out by asking you what had happened all those years ago, and now I have the answer.

(And now my husband understands, too.)

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84 thoughts on “A Letter to the Narcissist – No. 61”

  1. How does one submit a letter to the narcissist? I need a safe forum to unleash so I don’t end up sending to him and setting myself up for some type of Hoover. Thank you in advance

  2. Uma,

    Thank you for writing this.
    It does seem we are trying to get it right this time, with someone we are substituting for the ones who scarred us.Instead we add more scars.
    Even when we seemed to have moved on, those scars can resurface when you are vulnerable.

  3. Wonderful letter, Uma. What you went through and for so long is amazing…and said. You brought up about how he reminded you of your father but smarter and that was a lightbulb for me. My Narc had body language and traits that remind me of my father and I didn’t realize it until I read this. I have self confidence issues and my dad died when I was young. Perhaps this is why I was so attracted to my Narc. Thank you for the insight.

  4. Great letter! The time scale and details may be different but the feelings along the way are the same. The finale, seeing the light with the help of HG a common theme!

  5. «Vengeance is a lazy form of greef»

    Your letter is emotional and honest, and it would take the strenght of an empath to go through the emotions, gain understanding, self-fuel, and come out as still being a human on the other side.

    Glad to read that you have people to support you, but remember: at the end it is your ability to self-fuel, that brings salvation to your soul.

  6. “O never give the heart outright,
    For they, for all smooth lips can say,
    Have given their hearts up to the play.

    And who could play it well enough
    If deaf and dumb and blind with love?
    He that made this knows all the cost,
    For he gave all his heart and lost.”

    (W. B. Yeats, who coped with the British weather very well. Couldn’t have been worse than in Ireland, where they talk of fine weather when the rain is only a drizzle.)

  7. Uma….your story is all of our stories in a way. You told it so well. I love narc affair’s comments. Just reading this helps to make the two narcs I experienced a little smaller inside my head. That’s the thing, they are so big, they take up so much space in our minds. Letters like yours helps to peel back the layers and make them a little smaller, one day at a time. So, thank you.

    Hey HG, are you going to put together a book containing all the letters. I will send mine at some point.

    Also, HG… here is a topic I wonder about. I was completely hooked by a narc several years ago. I felt like he would never leave my head once he disengaged from me. What it took to get him out of my head unfortunately, was Narc2. And while I am still detoxing from Narc2 and again it is hell, this time I knew what I was dealing with and still fell for his dance. However, I did not fall in love like I did the first time. However, N2 broke the bond I still felt to N1. It’s like the IV needle was yanked out of N1 and shoved into N2. This is fascinating to me and helpful to realize in my recovery process. Not sure if you have addressed this concept in depth.

  8. Your letter, Uma, is the best example of the war between your intuition and your intellect for your feelings. And you managed it with a certain grace! You listened to your intuition’s voice (not always though), but anyway, it was your intuition that saved you finally. Excellent job!

    Never ignore your intuition, girls. Not only listen to it, but introspect and analyze what it tryes to say to you and why. If events go very quickly, make a pause, temporarily isolate yourselves from external world problems and people, and sort all of your things out. That what the phrase “Be in touch with yourself means”.

    Be in touch with yourselves and you’ll avoid a lot of unpleasant situations.

    PS. My friend who had lived in UK with her British husband, recently divorced him and came back. She said “The British legendary bad weather is really bad. I couldn’t cope with it. I prefer to swim in the water, not inhale it”.

    How you, British people, could live there?!

    1. How can we live in the United Kingdom? Oh there are many reasons to explain why but I shall give you one word ‘conkers’.

      1. Ha ha ha.

        My son lives in the UK now, so I might come over and visit you HG. I’ll bring my AK-47 🙂

      2. Oh, I know what the “conkers” means! My English Grammar Nazi Teacher told me about it when he wrote his comments on my letter about “street games”.

        He said “You don’t have that game in your country!”.
        I answered “Well, we have it, but in another modification. We have a guitar string instead of cord and a weight instead of conker… This “game” was very popular at late USSR times…”. Lol.

        So, playing “conkers” you, British guys, try to distract yourselves from a bad weather, huh? Lol.

      3. Being detained, Mr. Tudor? I’ll come swimming. My friend lives at the beach on the other side 🙂

    2. I could never handle living in a constant gloomy rainy area. Vancouver bc is a lot like that in the winter months. Id love to visit the UK one day there is so much to see and the country scenery is beautiful. Id be taking in all the castle tours 😄 The history fascinates me!

      1. It isn’t constantly gloomy although if you are used to a lot of sunshine nearly all year, it will be a significant difference. Still, if you seek me out it will be a wonderful golden period of course!

      2. I like rain. For me, places like Florida and Southern California are aesthetic hell holes.

        Not that I don’t enjoy sun. I absolutely do and need it. However, why do we feel that ‘beautiful days’ are limited to sunny ones?

        Rainy days with all those grey clouds are every bit as beautiful! That is cozy up weather…a book or film, hot tea, a nice glass of red wine. That is heaven!

      3. HG …does your golden period include castle tours?? 😄 ill be on the lookout 👤

        Hi bibi…i could handle sun year round. I do love the odd rain storm but i prefer it hot and sunny most days. My narcs from LA and prefers the season changes. Many from southern cali get tired of the same weather.

  9. Dear Uma,

    In your interesting and well composed letter I find “pieces” from my experience’s “puzzle”.

    You never know what you did to them, something you’re not even giving importance to (given the fact that we forgive people without getting revenge or holding a grudge for a lifetime).

    Best wishes to you and your wonderful family!

  10. Great letter. Reinforces my belief that its less about any power and control the narc has, and more about the ego and unmet needs of the empath.

    1. NA, unmet needs absolutely! But ego? I’m not so sure. If I had ego-issues at all, the affair with the narc certainly wouldn’t have improved those. I still feel rather embarrassed thinking about all the stupid things I did.
      Or is this not what you mean?

      What is your story by the way Narc Angel? I see your comments, but I don’t think I’ve read what happened to you. I only remember you once told you never really loved anyone. Is that right? Were you with a narc? If you wrote about it, can you tell me where to find it?

      1. Thanks NA, yes, I remember reading them. My brain is damaged, I can never seem to recall what name goes with what story. I see where you come from NA and I really hope you will find real love someday soon, but therefore you have to somehow get past the anger. If you can manage to see people’s disorders (and I think you can) maybe you can forgive, or accept what once was and open yourself to love and be loved. This is what I hope for you. Of course I don’t know anything, I don’t know how to deal with myself and my past either. Nevertheless, I hope we can have a good life, whether that is with or without a partner. Take care NA xx

      2. Blank

        It is your assessment so it cannot be wrong, but in real life, people would be shocked at your suggestion that I am an angry person.

        The voice and delivery of the message is narrated by the reader, so perhaps that is how logic is interpreted in print in some cases.

      3. Blank

        Im referring to the ego that overrides the inner voice telling us its too fast too soon and seems too good to be true. After all we are stellar arent we? We deserve this unicorn of love that is greater than all those around us. We accept the spotlight and believe all of the words that trip off of their lying lips because we have secretly thought these things about ourselves, and now someone has finally recognized our obvious superiority, worth, and being deserving of it (even though it seems over the top and other worldly). How many times have I read the indignant comments that the successor is not as pretty or intelligent or not as good to him/her as they were? That is pure ego.

        The ego that we know better than those who love and care for us and try to tell us that they see danger. We are not wrong-they are just jealous and just do not want to see us happy (even though they have always had our best interest at heart previously).

        The ego that denies us clarity when we do finally see. This is mine and it cannot slip away from me. I can fix it, fix him/her. Ego at its finest in thinking we are so great that we can “fix” someone else to be in line with our views and beliefs so they can be a better person. You know-more like us.

        There are many more examples of our ego in my view, but these come immediately to mind.

        Yes I include myself.

      4. Hi NarcAngel, I hope you do get a chance to see the small book I am about to write here. I don’t post much, but I have been following for about a year (seriously, I am not a stalker), and I always read with great interest your comments, some of them humorous, some thought-provoking. Underneath your ‘logical’ exterior I certainly sense that you have a desire to see people here free themselves from their narc, and I also sense a frustration when people don’t seem to be helping themselves, despite their knowledge. Your position on the ego of the ‘victim’ has been mentioned a few times, and I have thought about that quite a bit in terms of my own situation. While I agree whole-heartedly that the narc really does not have a lot of power and most of what keeps the empath or co-dep around is unmet needs, I do not always think there is an ego issue, at least not the way you have described it.

        I am not Uma, but I could be her. While I have learned a great deal from many of the letters shared here (and used others to remind myself of the bullets and bombs I myself have dodged), Uma’s story is most similar to mine, including the constant logic vs emotional battles that happen – many consciously and most subconsciously I think. Thanks to HG, I now have a label for my father – narcissist. Among other descriptors, he is a narcissist who left our family over 20 years ago for another family, and I have not had contact since. I was very fortunate enough to have a very strong mother who pulled herself up and never indicated how painful that must have been for her – she took care of us and made a much better life for herself than what she had with my father – many years later a life with a non-abusive man who has more goodness in his clipped fingernail than my father had in his whole life. She deserves that, but I know after what she went through, she doesn’t fully trust her current husband. I am well aware of what the spouse of the narcissist goes through and the abuse the children go through. In addition to the verbal abuse I endured (I am pretty stupid), I was constantly reminded how I was never good enough, and I was constantly reminded, while he was with my family, how many things were my fault – it was constantly my fault as to why things did or did not happen in my life. And somehow inside me I take responsibility for the fact that my father left, and it is my fault I do not have a relationship with him. Logically I know it is not my fault, and until my latest narc, I rarely ever thought about my dad anymore – but apparently that scar persists. So despite the fact that by all accounts I am somewhat successful in my personal and professional lives, there are still some weasely narcs who find their way in.

        Did you know that the narcs you were with were narcs when you began the engagements based on your history with your mom’s husband? In most cases, I can immediately sense it. I am immediately disgusted by all female narcs – as soon as I discover something off about them, I minimize or eliminate all contact, and for those with whom I must maintain contact, depending on the relationship, I am able to stay quiet or utilize my sarcastic wit to the best of my ability. I am also repulsed by most male narcissists, particularly those that insist on educating me on some matter I already know about or could care less about – I am, for all purposes, comfortable with what I know and don’t know and am more aware of my flaws and shortcomings than any other person (and on some level I am accepting of these). But there are a few male narcissists over the years that have wiggled their way in. These are the ones that I instinctively know not to criticize or make fun of (teasing is a favorite pastime of mine, and the people I love most in the world are all too aware of this). This latest narc who has slithered in has been the most difficult to understand. He is the cerebral narcissist Uma describes – I am long distance, secondary source with NO desire to be more. The few times we have had time alone, it has been horrible – completely one-sided with no desire to please me in any way, and then some nasty reflections thrown in. The WORST SEXUAL EXPERIENCE of my life – and one of them I traveled for (I have adopted your mantra – I no longer travel for C**K). And for the life of me, I cannot, with everything I know, stop talking to him, engaging with him, wanting to see him. Some days it takes every ounce of self control not to text him. It is not an ego thing – I am completely and logically aware that he is a narc and that interaction with him will only get worse, I am not interested in any other women he may or may not have in his life or whether or not I am better than other women he has in his life. But I do have this incessant need to ‘get it right’. Why can’t I just do what he wants, give him what he needs. I am so educated on the needs of the narc thanks to HG that I should be able to give to him what I could never give to my father. Why can’t I get it right? Certainly it must be my fault that he treats me this way. Of course logically I know that it has nothing to do with me, and I just intersected with him at the wrong time. And I have unhealed wounds. But logic does not override the emotional subconscious. At the same time, knowing what I know, I purposefully sabotage things with him – some might say because I know I am worth more than that, I am not going to chase him or stop talking to other people or praise him for the meaningless drivel he accomplishes. But do I purposefully refuse to provide fuel because I am fighting him, or do I do that because I want to fail – ‘I want the fact that he treats me badly to be my fault’, on some level. Because then the fact that I am to blame for him means that I am to blame for my dad leaving, and my dad really is a good guy. It is all so complicated in the inner depths of the mind. Logically I know my dad is not a good guy, and this narc, who cheated with me on his pregnant wife, is not a good guy. The way the mind heals itself from trauma is so complicated, and those relationships we have with our parents are so critical to good mental health. It is fascinating. It is simply fascinating that a chasm like this can stop the emotional and logical parts of the mind from healthy communication. The narc I interact with now – we can help each other. We understand each other’s pain. But our afflictions will never let us get to that point.

        I have never once bragged about any great love I have had because I am well aware of how quickly it can all go wrong. And I don’t for a moment believe I am more deserving of a great love than anyone else. How can I be if I still can’t do simple things correctly? Like Uma I am very fortunate to have a few friends and family I trust and who can balance this battle in my head. I can verbalize everything, but I don’t know how to heal my own trauma (I only recently realized it was trauma for me), and I certainly can’t heal the narc’s trauma. So all I can do is fight to maintain no contact as much as possible (I have periodic work interactions with this one), and if there is an encounter with another narc at another time, knowing what I know now, I need to walk away the first time those butterflies flutter.

        PS, I don’t think you come across as angry. But from your comments and letters, I sense that you were extremely frustrated and disappointed with your mom for staying despite the fact that her husband was abusing you and your siblings. And I sense that frustration and disappointment when you talk with others – not because you are angry with them but because, based on who you are, you can’t understand how they can remain stuck with all they know. It’s heartbreaking what you and many on here have suffered through. And I can’t understand why I stay stuck with all I know, other than I have to fight my way out of this glue, and it is exhausting.

      5. Hi Annie
        I very much appreciated reading your thoughts. You are right-I do want to see people free themselves and I have no right to be frustrated, but that is what I feel when people fight so hard to discard logic and fight to hold onto what is destroying them. Amazes me how they will lash out at me when they should be using that strength and resolve in disconnecting with their narc. Many of these people would eat someone alive for suggesting that they would allow a narc to abuse their children and yet they readily accept it for themselves, indirectly exposing them and perpetuating the cycle for another generation. There are numerous cuddly posts and responses and that is not my style. My view is that a lot of that allows the victim to feel a comradery that excuses and accepts their behaviour when they (intentionally but perhaps not consciously) ‘slip up’ again and again.

        I outlined what I mean by ego in my post to Blank and that was not specifically directed at Uma or anyone for that matter-just in general for those willing enough to admit it to themselves. There are some who see themselves as better than other victims and want to secure the outcome they want no matter the cost. You have an incessant need to get it right? Right for who? You are a long distance secondary source with no desire to be more? (Now that youve had the awful sexual experience?). You have no need to engage with him and yet you do. If that is not ego-driven, what do you attribute it to? Im not angry btw (apparently I have to work on my tone in print), Im truly interested.

        Im glad you felt comfortable to come forward to engage with me.

      6. Annie

        Btw-my mother was isolated from family and friends. She now says that I was right way back then in begging her to leave and she should have listened but how was she to take the advice of a child?

        A child was all she had.

      7. NA,

        “The voice and delivery of the message is narrated by the reader, so perhaps that is how logic is interpreted in print in some cases.”

        You are kidding me if you are saying that your letters (15 and 30) do not sound angry.
        I certainly did not start reading with an angry inner voice. I am not an angry person and have no angry inner voice. (Smugs often make me angry though). If you say you are not an angry person either, okay, that could be so. But in that case you were emotional / angry writing the letters. They sure do not sound very kind or pleasant.

        On the ego…
        I do not have ego-issues. I am usually a humble person and I can easily admit it when I am wrong and I’ll apologize.
        The ego sure wasn’t an issue in my relationships with the narcs. I never had any love bombing, I never even got compliments or presents or whatsoever. I loved them for their being, their kindness, their authenticity, sensitivity, attention. I just loved them, very intensely and that’s why they “loved” me. That’s all. And then they started hurting, manipulating and gaslighting me, because they had to, because of their disorder. As soon as I found out about NPD I went NO Contact with my last narc and divorced my narc husband. I didn’t think I could fix them at all, I just think it is very very sad (and of course I have gone through all the stages of hurt, anger, crying, forgiving, missing, longing, more crying, etc.)

        I like a lot of your comments, but to me you often come across as a narc. I am just being honest. The fact that you do not know love makes me thinking. Anyway, it doesn’t matter to me. You are you, I am me and I’m off to bed. Unfortunately I can’t meet any of you in real life. That’s a shame. Good night and take care NA! xx

      8. Blank
        If you read about the different classes of empaths:
        Empath
        Super Empath
        CoDependent
        (and then the additional traits to those such as Carrier, Magnet, Saviour, etc) you will see that some do have more and higher narcissistic traits than others. We are on a spectrum just as the narcs are. Makes sense to me as we may all be empaths but we are certainly not the same in tolerances, boundaries, responses, etc. For instance I will say no thank you to an invitation and not provide a reason. That would be considered rude by some, but I dont believe I need to fall all over someone with my reason for not attending (and most likely produce a little white lie) as others often do in trying not to offend. So its no wonder to me that people get in a twist sometimes over the harder things I say. I dont say them to hurt and they dont apply to everyone, but sometimes if one is honest with themselves they might entertain other possibilities than the ones they are currently using but that are not working. Its there to take or to leave , but Its funny-I almost always only hear from the ones who take offence. I have narcissistic traits yes, and that will make me a demon to someone who has next to none I suppose, but I also have empathy and that excludes me from the narc category. I am a very logical person and apparently that comes across as angry to you (and others) in the way I write. I can assure you I was not angry when I wrote the letters. I have often described my memories as watching a movie that is detached from me and I can write them down and put them away. In real life I am not known as an angry person-quite the contrary. I am invited to many events and told I am the life of the party, and sought out repeatedly for my candid and yes, sometimes brutal advice. It is also known that I do not suffer fools gladly and they will be addressed. I am more logical than emotional and maybe thats where some see anger. I wonder what you would see if you could meet me in real life.

        Or Im just an angry asshole. Your choice.

        Question:
        You said you divorced your narc husband but you are still living in the same house correct?
        Why is that? If you care to share.

      9. NarcAngel is not a narcissist. She has narcissistic traits. I have had the benefit of more information concerning NA to establish this is the case.

      10. NarcAngel, I am so glad you took the time to read my opus. I just think it is difficult for some people to face the truth about themselves, and sometimes our own shortcomings are too difficult to bare so it is much easier to attack the one who holds up that gosh darn mirror. I also find that when someone points out truths that I don’t necessarily want to see (or even those I don’t agree with), it is sometimes easier to swallow those truths if I give myself some time to internalize (some sleep in between responses is always good). But interacting with you is the easy part – as far as I can tell, you are not a narc, and you seem to want to understand, on some level, this perspective that is so foreign from your own.

        I have my own situation thousand of miles from my narc, so I don’t have a desire to be more than a secondary source. I’ve known him through work for a few years, and the few times a year that we see each other, we always seemed to have fun, and it was always so comfortable talking (he is quite charming), and I have no doubt I am attracted to him and probably showed that at some level through flirting, and he always sought me out, and I got hooked on the fun we seemed to have. I’m sure it got to the point that I was looking forward to seeing him. When he invited me to take it to the next level, I think I had hoped (perhaps expected) that it would be in a mutually beneficial way and that it would be a little thing we did when we saw each other periodically – a little extra greeting, if you will (and I naively thought we would still have the conversation and personal and professional interactions I had grown accustomed to on the outside in front of everyone and have a little on the side in private). I’m not proud of my behavior, especially in light of the fact that I didn’t stop once I found out he was married and expecting and that my father cheated on my mother and I never thought I would be the other woman. I had no desire to take him away from his life, but I thought maybe I would make some sweet memories to keep me warm on some very cold winter nights – my God, if anyone but you reads this, I am going to get some serious backlash for going out of my way to have an affair with a married man (and oh goodness, I must deserve every cruel and manipulative thing he has done to me). It turns out he is intensely controlling in every environment, very concerned about how he appears to his colleagues, and sexually and emotionally stunted The second and last time we were together, he was cruel and then proceeded to alternate the entire week we were at this event between ignoring me and telling me how inappropriate I act (how I say the wrong things, laugh too loud, yada yada). Logically I could care less what he thinks and have no plans to change, but emotionally, I think, what if I would have provided more fuel, maybe he would have treated me better. I should try that, and maybe we can go back to when we had good conversations and he was nice to me and we had fun when we saw each other (for the time being, I still have to engage with him professionally, although hopefully that won’t last forever). Logically I know that was all fake and there is no going back. But those what-if thoughts come back, particularly if he contacts me, throws me those stale crumbs, and I catch sight of that charming fella again – if only I had gotten it right, it could have been so nice (and it could be so nice). Why couldn’t I just fuel him up better, it wouldn’t have cost me anything. So is that ego to you? To me it is f**%$ed up, but more like, I am trying to get him to meet needs that my father didn’t meet (and certainly it is an impossible situation). For me, I’m hoping I finally get it right so that he is nicer to me, treats me better. I guess I am trying to secure some outcome – return to a previous state – but I don’t put it in the context of being better than other victims so I deserve it more. He is not mine, I can’t fix him (I can’t even fix myself), and no one has been or would ever be jealous of me or our ‘undying love’ – I never thought of it as undying love or unicorn love (I haven’t liked unicorns since I was 8). Is there another way the ego manifests itself? To me it is a struggle between what I logically know to be real and my self-sabotaged attempts at achieving a different outcome.

        I can’t imagine how your mother must feel now knowing what she put you through and how awful she felt to be so powerless to change the situation for you and your siblings when you were younger, to feel as though she did not have choices. It took a lot for her to tell you that you, as a child, were right and knew more than she did. To feel like you have no choice between keeping your babies safe and surviving must be hell. My mom was also isolated (that is how the narc operates, isn’t it…), in a different country making less than minimum wage. I don’t think she would have left my dad because by that time I think he took away nearly all of her self esteem and she did not have much confidence in herself, but he, rather mercifully, left us. I shudder to think how much more f%^%$ed up I would be if he would have stayed longer. To her credit, after he left her with some cruel parting words, she never looked back to him and never spoke to him again. She didn’t have any family around, but she did find an ally in her mother-in-law who was all too familiar with much crueler abuse from her narc husband, who by that time had died. My grandmother never had choices, and she was so supportive of my mom, and they both suffered so that I would have choices. I don’t feel duped by my narc (I am old enough to understand that people don’t always present their true selves when interacting with others), but I do wish he wouldn’t have bothered to make our interaction ‘intimate’, particularly since he couldn’t perform and it seems to have brought to the surface all sorts of wounds I would rather not have remembered. I am super curious to understand what makes narcs like mine and Uma’s refuse to participate in something that is a basic biological need (I don’t think these cerebral narc guys really want to get anything more than a BJ from anyone, and they don’t seem to care too much about that either – I don’t take the lack of mutuality with my narc personally, likely because it has never happened to me before). But most of all I am extremely disappointed in myself for taking the pain that my mother and grandmother endured to provide a future for me where I would have choices and never need to put up with a narc’s abuse and throwing it back in their faces by playing unnecessarily with fire. This can only turn out badly. I am trying to understand why it is harder for me to end it than it should be, and I am trying very hard to work it through. Many thanks to Uma for sharing her story and to you for listening and asking questions to help me get there. And of course to HG for providing so much valuable information and to the many other readers for sharing their stories and perspectives.

      11. Annie

        Regarding your first paragraph:

        Yes, I find a lot of people will not read with intent to understand or entertain a different view, but only to find the one thing they can latch onto that gives them an out or reason to say no thats not me, uh uh. They find that justification understandably because things are sometimes painful to face. I have had to face a lot of things that Ive done (and am still doing) wrong, so I know all too well.

        You and Uma will get there. You have both identified that there is a problem and are taking steps to resolve them. This is a good place to do that. You will get much support and education here to effect whatever change you identify and are willing to accept you need.

        Best to you both.

      12. NA, thanks for the explanation.
        I do not think your comments over all sound angry. You letters do. And now I am going to have a hard time trying to explain this in English. I read the letters again this morning (15 en 30). They sound written without emotion, but with a lot of held-back anger. You tell your personal story in #15 and I feel that the guy in #30 is paying for the childhood trauma. You call yourself a treacerous bitch. How should I view this?
        You can not tell me whishing people cancer isn’t about feeling anger. I mean, I totally get where you come from, but it is anger. The cold contempt for the guy in #30 comes across as really narc-ish.
        You write like my Nex behaves. Always soft speaking, straight forward, intelligent- but often sarcastic and with contempt and always without emotion. Never any emotion. From what I sense, that’s how I see you also. You come across as kind but also often harsh/ straight forward, good with words but also not in touch with your emotions. And if that would be the case, I could understand why that is so.
        I am not here to judge you, I do not know you. I only tell you how I see you from what I read and sense. The thing that is on my mind is why you have never loved. I know my Nex hasn’t. Ever. And, like with all narcs I wonder if he never had emotions or has cut them off, for some reason. If you have empathy, you are not a narc, I see HG confirming that. But I feel you have an issue with emotions. I think you could never express them in a healthy healing way and I think that is the reason why you can not love or be loved.
        I do not think of narcs in terms of demons, I can always see where they come from. For me it’s always important to know the why and how, so I can understand people.

      13. Blank
        Your response to me has raised some questions.

        Dont all empaths have issues with emotions and is the reason that why we all ended up here? Would it have been considered healthier if I had arrived here depleted of energy and sanity and an emotional mess by giving it a good go with a narcissistic partner as so many here?

        Maybe I dont know love because I started out in life without it. You cant miss what you dont know. I only know instinctively what it is not. It doesnt appear that many of you know love either but have an idea of what you would like it to be, and that is what the narcissist showed you.

        I do really appreciate you being honest and telling me what you see. It helps me in some way, so I thank you for that.

        Just one more question, because you didnt respond to it from my previous post:

        Why is it that you divorced your narc husband but are still living with him?

      14. Hi blank,

        I don’t see narc angel as angry. I see her as passionate abt what she believes in. I see u as angry though, even tho u state above that u are not an angry person. I may be wrong.

        Do u recall ur angry comments to dr. Hq in a letter to the narc no. 49?
        What abt ur angry comments to twilight – “don’t piss around the pot twilight”, and to caroline in that letter? I have noticed u r more careful with ur wording these days, and i really appreciate that! We are all learning together! I was not so careful w my words when i first landed here either.

        But the damage is done☹️
        Dr. Hq left. I miss her.

        U called her a ‘narcissistic bitch’ and u told her to overdose on prozac. U also said “your photograph is that of Anne Boleyn… I bet you relate to (them) because of their evil characters.”

        It was hurtful to read. As u explained, u didn’t literally mean for her to overdose on prozac, but i think (?) she was hurt regardless. I can assure u, dr. Hq is not a narc, btw. Hg can confirm it if he wishes.

        Anyways, like i said, i appreciate that u have a calmer tone these days😊

        But when u say that u r not an angry person, and that narc angel is, i wud say it’s easier to see others’ behavior, but not our own. We are all prone to this. I know i am.

        I just wanted to point this out. Pls don’t get me wrong blank. I really appreciate ur change in tone. And i v much appreciate ur presence here.

      15. Jenna

        Yes, I too remember Blanks entrance onto the blog, but put it down to dealing with fresh wounds and being new here. I didnt bring it up in any of my comments to her because of …ahem… my empathy for her in that situation and the fact that she is now getting settled here with everyone. I enjoy her presence and interaction also.

      16. NA (on your comment 04.18),

        “Dont all empaths have issues with emotions and is the reason that why we all ended up here?”

        I don’t know about other empaths, I can only speak for myself, but I never had problems expressing my emotions. I always have.
        My problems were about not setting boundaries, because I have no self-esteem.

        “Would it have been considered healthier if I had arrived here depleted of energy and sanity and an emotional mess by giving it a good go with a narcissistic partner as so many here?”

        No, I never suggested that. I am only wondering if you can express emotions. I think for any human being it is healthy and necessary to express emotions. I read about this on Psycholoy sites that we should express them. If you never express the anger that you feel inside, it becomes toxic, either for yourself (suïcidal) or for others (hurt, abuse, violence).

        “Maybe I dont know love because I started out in life without it.”

        That’s what I thought. It could also depend on the structure of your brain.

        “It doesnt appear that many of you know love either but have an idea of what you would like it to be, and that is what the narcissist showed you.”

        This doesn’t apply to me. My narcissists did not show me love and I do not believe in the kind of ‘romantic love’ you see on TV.
        Love is a feeling, a very deep intense feeling of wanting to care for this person, never harm them, never let anyone else harm them, giving your life for them (if you had to). And with a romantic partner you want to feel, kiss, touch, stroke. be one with them. Of course there is a difference in love for friends, ones children or partner, but you know love when you feel it. (Just like you know what an orgasm is, if you’ve had one.)

        “Just one more question, because you didnt respond to it from my previous post:
        Why is it that you divorced your narc husband but are still living with him?”

        I did not answer this question on purpose. And I’ll tell you why.
        This is what you wrote in your comment:

        “For instance I will say no thank you to an invitation and not provide a reason. That would be considered rude by some, but I dont believe I need to fall all over someone with my reason for not attending (and most likely produce a little white lie) as others often do in trying not to offend.”

        I don’t consider it to be rude when you don’t give an explanation, but I consider it to be inconsiderate. You’ll leave a person with questions, most likely questioning themselves. That is not nice. You do not have to come up with a white lie, you can just say the truth (“I don’t feel like it, I’m too tired, I hate the food there, I do not like your friend so and so, because he takes over the whole evening.. “) Whatever the reason is, why would you not say it, in order not to leave the person questioning why?

        I suppose you did not like me ignoring your question. And that is what I am trying to show you. It is inconsiderate not to do so and it doesn’t feel good when you are being ignored or having to question everything, especially yourself. This is what my nex did with me for 28 years.

        But I will answer your question 🙂 . It is for practical reasons mainly. I have nowhere to go. I do not have a job, which means no money to pay for rent. If I get a job (or get social housing – I’m on a waiting list – I can move out.

      17. Hi Blank

        As I responded to Geyserempath-I acknowledge that I am damaged in a different way than some, but I dont think that necessarily makes me more damaged or unable to provide a different perspective. If you dont think the ego scenario applies to you then I accept that-but yet Bibi did identify with it. Everything I say does not apply to everyone. The suggestion is there to take or to leave just as your concern that I am unable to express emotion in a healthy way or that I appear angry. Btw- I was angry as a child but I was not angry when I wrote those letters, and I am not angry in all of my comments.

        An example:
        You supposed that I did not like your ignoring my question. That is untrue. I would have accepted had you said youd rather not answer. I just thought the question got lost in all that was discussed and I was interested to know if it was symbolic to you presently to gain the divorce with a view to breaking away further in future. Baby steps in leaving the relationship so to speak. That was my interest-your mindset. I could have just gone on considering that unhealthy and thinking you were unable to break from his grip but I asked, and you have explained that it is a financial rather than emotional decision. Clarity instead of assumption.

        I hope that in time you are able to gain that freedom. Thank you for giving your views and allowing mine. You have given me things to think about.

      18. Hi narcangel,

        “I acknowledge that I am damaged in a different way than some… ”

        I don’t think u r damaged. U r different becoz u do not love, but not damaged. Love is only one of the many traits that empaths posess. U do not have that one, but u have others – honesty, decency. In fact, ur honesty outshines and is quite exemplary. Just my two cents🙃

    2. I know this ego you speak of because I have it. Didn’t want to admit he was bad for me because it would mean I was gullible enough to fall for his shit. Also didn’t want to admit I was the type to be emotionally manipulated. I am above that, you see. Or so I thought.

      1. Bibi

        Ah yes. The ego that tells us we know quality and can see through a con. That forbids us to admit that we got it so monumentally wrong and places the blame elsewhere-allowing it to be repeated.

        Dont be hard on yourself Bibi-we all have it, but the ego of some prevents them from admitting it, and so on they go-focusing on the abuser. Trying to make sense of why the say what they say and do what they do, how their abuser can never be happy and should change etc, instead of why they allowed the abuse to continue once they identified it as such, and to address that so they do not look to have that fulfilled by another person and become ensnared in future.

        Until they come here to be educated and come clean with themselves that is. The information is here. Some listen but do not hear.

        Just my view of course.

      2. NarcAngel. I do not see you as angry. I love reading your insights. You posted above:
        “Dont all empaths have issues with emotions and is the reason that why we all ended up here? Would it have been considered healthier if I had arrived here depleted of energy and sanity and an emotional mess by giving it a good go with a narcissistic partner as so many here?”

        I am depleted of energy and sanity and I am an emotional mess. That is why I ended up here. I didn’t know what I was dealing with until I came across this site. The people here are upbuilding and kind and I believe we all cheer for each other to heal. xx

      3. Geyserempath

        Thank you. You understand. I acknowledge that while I may be damaged in a different way to some, that doesnt mean that I am MORE damaged or that I cannot bring a different perspective. I am sorry that you have been affected in those ways and hope that you are feeling better each day and with every time you read and interact.

    3. Hi NA,

      Happy New Year!

      I do not see you as an angry person at all and you have a sense of humour. You do not need to change your tone.
      I read Blank’s comment saying *to let go of anger* and IMO, she did not intend to attack your character or personality and did not mean to hurt you. Having some righteous anger towards our abusers and becoming an angry, bitter person are two different things.

      You are genuine and sincere, NA. Few people are like you.
      Most people I have met in real life in the last +10 years are insincere and passive-aggressive. They have been raised entitled and narcissistic. Being honest and authentic is seen as a weakness.

      1. EB
        Happy New Year to you as well and thank you.

        Blanks comment didnt hurt me. I understand and am well used to those sentiments and concerns about me by now. Sadly yes, differences are often suspect and viewed as weakness and that is sad.
        It does make me wonder though, why people think Im here.

    4. Narc angel, blank, annie,

      I agree with narcangel. The empath has an ego but many empaths will not see it. They want to be loved – that is ego. Why not just accept that the narc cannot love becoz that is part of his disorder? No, the empath wants and demands love in return. Many of u will argue that it is just establishing boundaries, not willing to be abused, etc. but they will not realize that it absolutely IS ego.

      “How that led to me sucking on your fingers, neck, and ears, I will never understand. Never…”
      Uma is indirectly blaming the narc for her own behavior – this is ego.

      “It was so tacky that as soon as I was back in my room, my friends and I had a laugh. You were a bit of an experiment to us…”
      This is cruelty and pure ego.

      “… you reminded me of an autistic girl I knew”
      I dislike the comparison of narcs with beautiful autistic pple, regardless of the monotone speech of the autist. This comment is very disturbing.

      “… introducing you to a PEASANT.”
      This is ego.

      “Was I not good enough?”
      This is ego, but understandable. Everyone wants to feel “good enough”.

      “… every time we spoke, I felt like my soul had been raped”.
      What abt him? How do u think he felt when u used him as an ‘experiment’? U seem only concerned abt how he affected u. Don’t u think u may have wounded him when u first met and “shelved” him, as u admit. This is ego.

      Uma,
      Don’t misunderstand me pls. I am happy u r free of this narc. And i am sorry u had to go thru this. I just wanted to point out that everyone has ego, including empaths.

      1. Jenna, I still do not agree with this. As I said before, my narcs never told me they loved me. I loved them. I still think it would have been enough, if they hadn’t start manipulating, gaslighting and hurting me. They drove me insane, they messed up my mind and that’s why I had to stop it or else I wouldn’t have been alive now. If you call that ego, than our whole existence is ego.

      2. Hi blank,

        Not wanting to be manipulated or gaslighted is not ego. U loved them even tho they never told u they loved u. That is not ego.

        My opinion, and i’m not judging anyone who thinks otherwise:
        Wanting a perfect fairytale romance and complaining if one doesn’t receive it is ego, imo. I’m not saying u do this, blank. I often hear complaints such as ‘oh he didn’t get me a vday present’ or ‘oh he forgot my bday’ etc. Bdays past age 25 – a day all abt me, me, me. Personally, i feel uncomfortable and hope for no celebration. I do not like being the center of attention. It makes me feel selfish. My current non-narc ‘normal’ (non empath) partner doesn’t get me gifts. He never remembers important dates. I have learned to live with it. I can’t have it all. Nobody’s perfect. He has other important qualities though. There are no men that exist in real life that are so perfect and romantic like they portray in movies.

        Thx for the interesting discussion. 😊

      3. Jenna, I just read about giving and receiving in a relationship. It’s not so bad, if a guy forgets to buy you a gift occasionally, but it is bad if you are always on the giving end only and not the receiving.

      4. Hi blank,

        If the guy expects a gift on his bday and objects if he does not receive one, yet doesn’t give gifts himself, it is hypocrisy. I wud feel bad.

        But if he doesn’t expect it for himself, nor gives gifts or sentiments in return, it is ok. If i am the one making the choice to get him something despite knowing this, then i shud not b sad. But sometimes i do get sad. Why? Becoz of my ego – ‘wanting’ to be loved, ‘wanting’ to feel recognized, ‘wanting’, ‘wanting’, ‘wanting’. We all have ego. Again, it’s my opinion only.

      5. Jenna

        Youre right-everyone has ego, and it is considered to be good to have a healthy one. Im starting to think that people are misinterpreting it to be only a bad thing, just as many thought a narcissist was only a loud swaggering braggart until they experienced a covert.

        There are many definitions. Among them:
        Self-esteem, self-worth and self-importance
        The part of the mind that mediates between the concious and the unconscious
        The part of your identity that you consider your “self”

        I am suggesting that people (and not all-only those that may entertain that is in play) are sometimes wrestling with their ego when they do not acknowledge the red flags.

        I hope you are feeling better.

      6. Hi narcangel,

        That’s right. Everyone has ego. It is part of our psychology. It is within the brain’s wiring. Some have it more than others, but everyone has it.

        I am feeling better. Ty.

      7. Hi Jenna,

        Can you remember who made you believe that you are selfish if you want to celebrate birthdays past a certain age? Where does it come from that spending time with people you care on your birthday is all about yourself and this equals wanting to be The Centre of Attention?

        Self-centred narcissists call other people selfish (projection). They will not grant you good things happening in your live.

        IMO, wanting to spend time with people we care and whose company makes us feel good has nothing to do with narcissistic self-love. It is about self-worth, enjoying life, feeling we deserve good things and accepting it from other people too.

        When people we love want to spend time with us on important dates, they show us they care and that we matter to them. However, if we feel we are not worthy of good things in our life, first we teach others how to treat us (‘I do not want anything on my birthday’ – I do not deserve to enjoy it) and second we will choose people who make us feel this way too. Thus, we will see their behaviour as a *proof* we do not deserve anything good in our life, which is not true. We were born worthy.

        If your husband does not want to celebrate his birthday, it is ok. You do not have to wish exactly the same for yourself on *your* bd or on any other date. Why not be honest and let him know about your wants and needs, what dates are important to you and what you would like to do? He cannot read your mind. Your wants and needs do matter. If he is not a narcissist, he will understand and you will probably have a good time with him. You are worthy of having a good life, Jenna.

      8. Hi EB,

        I had to think abt this alot. I was shy growing up, so that is why i do not like being the center of attention, i think. I grew out of my shyness mid-teens, but not wanting to be the center of attention still persists. I feel very humbled in bday situations, like everyone is being so kind, and it overwhelms me somewhat.

        “It is about self-worth, enjoying life, feeling we deserve good things and accepting it from other people too.”
        I agree with u. But on my bday, all the focus wud be on me, and i just feel v uncomfortable if it is a grp of friends.
        With an intimate partner, i wud not feel uncomfortable. In fact, it may not appear like this, but in reality i am v demanding of my intimate partner. I ask and i question, over and over, lol. I told him many times. My signif. other tries to remember, but again forgets or does not care to remember. I have accepted it. And i reason it the way i did. I reason it until i internalize it. Perhaps it is a defense mechanism? Idk. But in reality, no man is perfect, right? And since i am not perfect, i shud not expect perfection either. Like i said, he has other good qualities – a high moral compass, strong boundaries, high ethics, efficiency. If i try to find a man who posesses all the great qualities like they show in the movies, i wud be single forever. Well, i thought i found such a man, but he turned out to be a narc. So perfection is a red flag now.

        Ty for ur thoughtful comment.

      9. Jenna,
        I understand that you will feel uncomfortable when you are attracting too much attention. You are quiet and observant and do not belong to the loud, boisterous people.

        I am really sorry to hear that you have already told him about it many times but it was ignored. It can happen once but it is impossible to forget birthdays or anniversaries **every year**. He must have at least one calendar. He cannot be efficient if he forgets all his business appointments and meetings (I am sure he doesn’t). Does he forget his parents’ and siblings’ birthdays every year too? Christmas? There are gift shops that send birthdays and anniversaries reminders to their customers. You can pre-order gifts in case you will not be able to remember or to do it on time. I have done that. IMO, there are no excuses to forget important dates nowadays.

        I do not think you are expecting perfection or that you are being demanding for expressing your wishes and for having your feelings acknowledged, Jenna.

        “…tries to remember, but again forgets or does not care to remember. I have accepted it. And i reason it the way i did. I reason it until i internalize it.”

        You have accepted and internalized that he forgets or that he does not care?

        I do not know if it is a defence mechanism. Maybe the article ‘How your emotional thinking creates excuses’ can help. I still do that. Your SO has some good qualities. I think you deserve better.

      10. Hi EB,

        Ty for ur thoughtful observations.

        Abt meetings, yes he does forget these too frm time to time, unless the staff reminds him. And u are right, he does not wish family members on their bdays, nor do they wish him, as his family is not big on bdays.

        “You have accepted and internalized that he forgets or that he does not care?”

        I have accepted that he forgets many important dates, and this is an indicator that he does not care enuf to remember. Becoz really, if one does not want to forget something, there are a million ways, as u pointed out some examples, to remember.

        I will re-read the particular article u referenced. Ty for thinking i deserve better, but like i said, i have many faults too, so i have realized to just let it go. I have completely internalized this, and i really now think it is ok. I think our beliefs abt relationship dynamics are largely a result of our own experiences.

      11. Hi EB,

        I’d just like to add to my reply. There are certain qualities that i’ve settled on regarding a partner, but there are certain qualities on which i will not settle. For eg., he must be highly educated, having a minimum of a bachelor’s degree, though i prefer masters or doctorate. I also will only accept a partner who is in a few professions tho it may sound snobby of me. I place alot of importance on high education level and that is something on which i will not budge. He must have a minimum of 4-8 yrs of university education and further career related ongoing education. I do not judge others who are not in my preferred professional fields tho. It is my preference since this was instilled in me frm a young age. I have the same requirements for myself regarding education level.

      12. Hi Jenna,

        Everybody has preferences and parental influence plays an important role. I think that people who choose physically and verbally aggressive partners have experienced something similar in their family of origin and maybe they think this is something normal that happens everywhere. If not, they would not be able to put up for one day with such partners, not to mention allowing them to call them names or to humiliate them sexually. The same goes for tolerating certain addictions like alcohol, cigarettes, drugs, gambling and compulsive overspending. I am not judging anyone because I know that if I had experienced the same, I would have probably chosen that kind of abusers too.
        My narcissistic father had his preferences regarding academic achievements and professional fields and tried to instil those things in me too.

      13. Hi EB,

        Yes i do think our childhood shapes who we choose as a partner, how much abuse we tolerate, or how much abuse we will not or cannot tolerate.
        (Danny’s letter especially comes to mind, and i wonder what her childhood must have been like😞)

        I am sorry to read that ur father is a narc. I am glad u are on this site, as it will help u to understand his behavior and proceed w caution and protect urself.

        Ty EB for ur comments.

      14. Hi Jenna,
        I am glad you are here too. Thank you for writing. I appreciate all your replies and your insights.
        Both of my parents were narcissists (Not fishing for compassion. I did not love them, they hated me so I do not suffer from not having them in my life). My mother did not reveal anything about her and her behaviour. My father did. He told me some useful things about narcissistic men (most of them can be found on this blog). I used to work for him. He used to travel a lot and he thought some clients or business relationships would try to take advantage of me, especially when I was young. So it was all about him to protect his company and his perfect family façade and not about me, but his advice was quite useful anyway. This is why I think (at least partly) that I have never been in a romantic relationship with a narcissist, even though there were narcissists who tried to ensnare me. Unfortunately, I am still a target for female bullies who feed off drama, just like my mother did. Some people call it Unfinished Business. There was an elderly narcissistic relative of mine who knew how to deal with two-faced narcissistic women and she helped me a couple of times in the past but she died some years ago.

      15. Hi EB,

        Though u were raised by narcissists, u grew up to be a beautiful soul, and i congratulate u for that. It takes strength. I am glad u have not been ensnared by a narc romantically, but i am sorry that u are a target for female bullies. Pls take care of urself. I am surprised the elderly narc relative helped u. I am sure it was for her own purposes, just as hg helps for his own purposes. Some narcs can do good, but we must remain distant and vigilant. I am sorry for ur loss.

      16. Hi Jenna,
        Thank you. This relative of mine did not know anything about psychology and disorders. She was manipulative, had her own tactics to extract information and to make people do what she wanted. However, this knowledge and power she had did not seem to be enough for her. She was bitter and unhappy. She did reveal a couple of things when I was talking about other women had done. She immediately recognized their behaviour, ‘translated’ it, she told me what to do and how. It is a parallel world. A couple of years before she died she tried to manipulate me too. As long as narcissistic women do not see you as a competitor of some kind, they may help you deal with another female narcissist, if they want to but this is very rare.

  11. This is my favourite long letter to the narcissist so far. It encapsulates very well the complexity of a relationship and the variety of emotions felt by Uma for the narcissist, the realisation that the narcissist was toxic for her and Uma’s struggle to rid herself of him. And finally with the help of HG’s articles it all became clear. An inspirational and interesting story.

  12. Hi uma…ty for sharing your great letter!
    Something stood out to me when you mentioned about your dad and looking for what you didnt get from him in this cerebral narc. You were very independant yet you had a codependant streak. The need for validation from this guy is a form of codependacy and it stemmed from your relationship with your dad. Reading your letter you have so much insight into who you are and why you felt the way you did. This guy was someone you wanted to feel wanted by and when he didnt follow thru you felt that need arise to be needed and important.
    It sounds like you had many factors in your life that helped you dodge the jaws of this man and that was your independance, friends, career and family. You had still had that rejection to your core and id hazard a guess it wasnt him but moreso deeper and your father. He just filled in to help you see where the vulnerability was. Narcs have a way of teaching us about ourselves which is ironic bc they dont seem to ever learn about themselves.
    The important question is what was it about your relationship with your dad that left you vulnerable?
    You sound like you are so aware of what this narc did and why which is so crucial to moving on and healing. All the best to you!

    1. “Narcs have a way of teaching us about ourselves which is ironic bc they don’t seem to ever learn about themselves.”

      I love that sentence narc affair! You capture a lot of the essence of a narcissistic relationship there. Very true xx

      And what a great letter that highlights so many elements of the fundamentals in a narcissistic dynamic! Well done Uma!

      1. Hi catherine…ty a friend of mine brought that up and i agree with her. Lifes a learning journey and we learn from each other but some dont have their eyes open and miss this.
        Your posts ive learned a lot from 💓

      2. I’ve learned from yours too narc affair. It’s amazing to be able to share this way; I’ve learned so much. Hugs to you

    2. NarcAffair – brilliant insights! Until Uma wrote this I didn’t think about the “dad” connection. it is validation, certainly, and self esteem issues harkening back to what I didn’t get from my father. Thank you for this, NA! xx

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