The Devastation of the Illusion

the-devastation

You fell in love with an illusion. You fell hard and deep for something which never existed. The golden days that we created together were the twisted reflections of my manipulative hold over you. I know how anxious you were to try to recover the golden period. You poured your beautiful heart into securing the impossible. I know that my silences, my verbal violence, the cheating and the lies, my perfidious control of you was brutal, malicious and devastating. I understand that the whole avalanche of manipulative techniques I applied to you, in savage wave after insidious wave crushed your self-esteem, mauled your sanity and shattered your world. This brutality was nothing compared to the aftermath.

For now you have slipped away from my tight, choking grip. I know however that you sit looking from the window where you used to watch for me strolling up the driveway, a bouquet in my hands and the pain still wracks you as you remember how you fell in love with someone who was not real. Memory after memory stirs from within, an endless loop of ‘best of’ moments that you want to stop remembering but you cannot. It hurts yet you still want to remember because even as the pain rises in your chest, you still feel the flicker of your love for me and you still cherish that. Like the drug addict, you know that line of cocaine is no good for you but still you need to snort it. The cold silences may no longer chill our living room. The sting of my slap across your cheek has long since faded. The barbed comments I fired your way each day have lost their power to wound. All of that has gone. The one lingering, tortuous pain that still sits deep within you is the knowledge that you were in love with an illusion No matter how much you discuss it with your friends, the earnest hours with your therapist and the pile of books about healing that are stacked up besides your favourite chair (which I always tried to sit in before you), none of them help take away that awful aching.

You can manage the shame of being fooled. You take a strange pride in having given your all to such a despicable person because that is the person you are. Honest, decent and a provider of unconditional love. You do not want that to change. You do not want to lose the empathy for which you are renown. The battered bank balance will repair (eventually) and the dosage of the medication will come down (your doctor has said as such in soothing tones). The strength of character which made me choose you means you can deal with all of these things. The one thing that will never leave is that deep-seated pain that you loved a ghost. Your head will eventually accept what happened, that you were charmed, entranced and enchanted and you never stood a chance. That was why you were chosen. Emotionally, you will never lose that dull ache as you sit and reminisce about our time together and how wonderful being in love with me was. Your heart will never accept that it was not real.

That crack, that fracture, that tiny chink that remains from your frenetic and devastating time with me shall always remain. It is through it that I can return as I slip, shadow like into your heart through that unhealed wound. That is why we did what we did; so we always had a way back in. For all of the strength that you exhibit through never taking a call from us, from changing email accounts, from burning the pictures and changing mobile numbers, you are never truly safe. Yes, you manage to evade the snaking tendrils that we uncoiled to try to haul you back under our spell. You will have to maintain that vigilance for the rest of your life. Our polluting influence, if ever allowed near you again, will creep and trickle through the hole that will never seal. You are consigned to a lifetime of wariness and maintain your defences because that damage is permanent.

You will always be in love with the person you thought I was.

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43 thoughts on “The Devastation of the Illusion”

  1. The way you describe that “crack” narcs leave behind or purposely made to be sneak back in before we even notice, reminded me of a calculated killer.
    Then “It is through it that I can return as I slip, shadow like…” scared me because just imagining the narcs shadow literally made me shake. I just realized the amount of power that man has on me. WAY MORE THAN I THOUGHT.

  2. H
    That is very good of you to enlighten others and to direct them here so that they can find answers and some comfort as you have. I wish you peace.

  3. Will he abuse my replacement just like he abused me?

    Will he start devaluation, withdrawal, flirting with others?

    Now he tries to seduce her. She is responsive. She broke up with her boyfriend (for narc, probably). I suppose, the golden period is near. I wonder how long it will last. Before her he had a short relationship with someone else, I think she was below his expectations and he dated her just to stop the fuel crisis. But this new target could be long term girlfriend (from my point of view). Oh please, tell me it will end badly just like every relationship he had!

  4. Thank you to all the nice empaths that have wished me well.

    Today was my ex-narc’s funeral service, and it was as confusing as the time I spent with him (6 years)

    They buried him on the date of his deceased sister.

    As you all know a narc does NOT like to share anything. I know he was rolling in hell when he saw this. They also made most of the time about his dead sister, and most of those who spoke about him, mentioned how damn mean he was, and he really was!

    They had his ex-wives speak, he hated one of them with a passion.

    Another fiance popped up….she said she was on the first year of the journey with him. There was an audible gasp in the church….he was relentless in his search for admiration and love, even his last days. while telling me and one other, how much he was in love with us. I

    All in all it was a pageantry of fakery lived exactly like his life. Tragic.

  5. I love the implication behind your message, Sarah. And while those feelings are still hard to forget, I think I’m going to start thinking of my narcissist as an appliance… maybe something like a banana slicer. They exist, and are pretty much considered useless. 🍌
    The problem with my brain is… one thought pretty much leads to another.

    But your comment made me smile. I needed that today.

    1. This comment ⬆was supposed to have popped up below Sarah’s. Perhaps the empathic needs are intense today, but I hope that we don’t cause a crash to your site. It seems a little shaky at times. I had one comment just fall off the cliff. Not sure where it disappeared to; it went ‘poof’ right as I was typing. 💥

      I certainly don’t want to make more work for you, HG. I realize that at certain times it seems as if I’ve volunteered for the welcoming-committee…. and I can see how that might further congest traffic, but it helps to keep my fingers busy so that I don’t keep my mind on you-know-who. 👾

      (But you know those little PSA/commercial reminders that tell the television-obsessed kids to take a break and go outside and play? Pretty sure I need to hop and go get in my garden.)
      🌱🌻🌷

      But thanks for the programming so far, HG
      Surely this is a safer addiction than the other? 😜

    2. BurntKrispy

      Maybe a banana related appliance is not the best choice as it may cause you to focus on……well, the banana. Perhaps a nut chopper or grinder? Just a thought.

  6. Yes, it’s so devastating. They act as if they are our soulmate. And, they make us feel so wanted, so special. We are the very air that they breathe. And then, they become the very air that we breathe. In time, the carpet is pulled out from underneath us, and we fall hard. It’s a brutal fall. All of their promises were nothing, but dust.

    1. That’s how they do it, Authenticity. You certainly know how to call it like you see it! 👀

      I’m still trying to pick myself up from the fall. Best wishes to you.

      1. BurtKrispyKeen,

        This is very kind of you to reply to my comment, as well as the others. I hope that your healing will be not too lengthy, as mine has been, and is successful.

        I don’t want to give the Narcissist too much credit by saying that, he alone, is the reason for my lengthy recovery process. No, the credit does not go to him, alone. Ha ha. The credit goes to the fact that besides him, there were other Narcissists whom I fell in-love with, one directly after the other.

        I fall in-love way too easily stemming, I believe, from the complete lack of nurturing, affection, and love, from infancy, and onward.

        I imagine that if my upbringing had been a healthy and functional one, I would have never fallen for such mean-spirited, reckless, lying, vicious, heartless, dark-spirited, deceitful, remorseless, despicable, backstabbing, ruthless, wickedly cruel, venomous, cutthroat, loveless, vilely savage, predatory brutes who chew up their prey ever so slowly, so as to intensify their pain, and then promptly spit them back out just so they can proudly slither back, and survey their handiwork from afar, as they laugh aloud at their maimed victims, barely writhing along the grounds in their tortured ruins, like a squashed bug.

      2. Hello Authenticity,
        Thank you for your well-wishes. It is disheartening to consider how long this healing process takes! For you to have to endure back-to-back experiences… I can only imagine how difficult that must be? One narc-boy has about put me under, so I think I really will become a nun if I have to go through another!

        Truly, my heart goes out to you. It sounds as if you have been through more than a fair share of pain. And I understand what you shared about falling in love.. seeking that sensation of being cared for in a special way and being able to give another our ‘all.’ There is nothing like that feeling. I too “love” a lot of people (in a non-romantic sense) but I have rarely let a man get really close to that certain place deep within in my heart. So I especially get angry at myself for giving that spot to a narcissist. But either way, whether we fall quickly or hold back… the wrath of an encounter with a narcissist is devastating to the heart.

        And yes… our childhood wounds have a huge role in this, but narcissists are such charming characters, so I believe that anyone could fall prey, at least to the right one… or at least until his true colors start to shine.

        And I enjoyed all of the words you used to describe when the chameleon changes his hue. I got a kick out of it actually. You’re pretty darn good at that!

        Best wishes, Authenticity

    2. Authenticity, very well said. This part especially resonates with me.

      “predatory brutes who chew up their prey ever so slowly, so as to intensify their pain, and then promptly spit them back out just so they can proudly slither back, and survey their handiwork from afar”

      That, I believe is the difference between a narc and someone who is just a ‘typical’ careless asshole. The narc is truly proud of the pain they have inflicted, and the more slowly they can chew us, the longer they get to savor that high. It’s truly a sick, twisted fuck who would get satisfaction from treating anyone that way.

  7. I don’t think it was an illusion. I think he became a better man with me, but he couldn’t maintain it without me and he was without me because he didn’t want to have his life include responsibilities of husband and father.

    His anger and frustration and who knows what else turned him into a frightening monster that made me feel embarrassed, ashamed, alone, unloved, unwanted, scared, confused, hoping for help and praying for the man I knew and loved to come home, worried for the future and the wellbeing of our child and myself.

    He can’t get back in my heart because he isn’t wanted anymore. He isn’t loved anymore. The memory I have and cherish is of a dead man, of a man who doesn’t exist because he killed all that was good within himself when he chose an empty, loveless and hopeless life instead of
    LOVE. He is a shell of his prior self, unrecognizable and full of self-inflicted wounds.

    R.I.P. – man who I once loved, who didn’t know what to do with all of the possibilities and potential that he had been blessed with.

    1. Hi Kate,
      I understand those feelings that lay heavy on our hearts, but know that you are no longer alone.

      I too believe that they can become “better people,” so I have no doubt that you helped yours in many ways. Those anger traits and impulse control issues… that had to be incredibly frightening for you. You survived such while keeping a caring heart. No easy feat.

      I have worked with men who have received treatment for such impulse issues and when they finally open up, they will tell you that they have learnt how to better control their disruptive emotions. So I will always hold onto hope, but you did exactly what you had to do as protection is paramount.

      Over Easter weekend, I took my son to see “I Can Only Imagine.” If you get a chance to see it, the movie portrays the touching story that inspired the song of the same name.

      I too feel as though there were parts of my relationship with my narcissist that were genuine. While I can see him for the damaged man that he is, I never saw him as a monster. I hold on to the opinion that everyone has good traits, yet it is those good traits that I let cloud my vision. But fortunately, my narcissist’s bad traits finally came into focus. It’s not that I didn’t have a 20/20 vision on his flaws, but it was just so easy to want to not believe that someone so wonderful could be such a whoremonger. (Actually, I feel sorry for those other women as I’m sure they were deceived in a similar fashion. And truthfully, they weren’t whores. It just makes me feel better to use that word.)

      I have tried to bury mine in my head, but he keeps resurrecting. It is comforting for me to see how far you have come. Don’t underestimate your strength Kate. You have accomplished so much against many obstacles. Knowing of your story gives me added strength.

      Hang in there Kate.

  8. The illusion is his and his only now.. When realizing what he was about
    for me the disconnect came rapidly.. That crack you say will always remain.. NOT!!! Perhaps a crack from me will always remain..

  9. Well said HG. I’ve never believed in the concept of closure. After being romantically involved with a narc for 12 years, I’ve lost the ability to trust people.
    I’ve built a wall around me that may crumble a bit, but it will never collapse.
    The emotional trauma stemming from narc abuse cannot be fully overcome. I just have to learn to live with it. Hopefully the bitterness and anger will ease. It’s been 2 years and I’m still working on it.
    Narcs take away parts of us we can rarely regrow.

    1. That is so true Cindy.
      I feel forever changed.

      You have longstanding experience… that is a chunk of time! Best wishes as you continue to heal.

  10. Oh my.
    I’ve only just found this site, and after just a few readings I find it more resonant and authentic than anything else I’ve read on the topic. (And it’s a damn sight better than that tome, Malignant Self-love … far more useful and so much more fun and horrific to read.) Well done, HG.

    I am a smart, grown man. Professional. Sophisticated. I thought I was skilled at discerning reality from the abundant noise. Yet she wholly entrapped me with barely more than a smile and the batting of the eyelashes.

    Every word of this post is true, of that I have no doubt. Thank you, HG. You help at least with the intellectual aspects of the problem.

    1. Indeed Gareth, welcome and do make use of the masses of material here, it is the most powerful and effective that you will find.

    2. Welcome Gareth. I look forward to your input on the blog from the male perspective. The devastation caused by female N’s is not represented much here. It’s a bit of an estrogen fest here, but you will find validation and support.

      1. I was thinking the same thing MB… it’s always nice to have a male perspective.

        Best wishes Gareth the Innocent. We will try to maintain your innocence when we are spouting off an estrogen-fueled deliverance.

        They are tricky little rascals to figure out, but HG isn’t bring modest when he states that the material here is powerful. Best wishes to you, Gareth, as you learn and heal.

      2. My husband had an affair with a female narcissist. He ended it, and when he did, it was OVER. No more contact which I am sure she still cannot believe he did that to her. It’s been two years and she still can’t believe that we’re together and happy and he has no interest in her. I’m writing about the entire affair on my blog.

        My father was a narcissist and a sociopath, probably bipolar. He was an evil person. As soon as this former affair partner started acting up after my husband ended it, I knew she was a narcissist.

        Very interesting blog, HG.

  11. Your latest videos: feedback

    Was just listening to these on my headphones which is the best way. You have changed something. The recording is so clear and improved from some of the older videos. On some of those the “p” sounds were very harsh and unpleasant to my ears.

    Whatever it is you’re doing, it’s nice. I like how you growl “us” and “fuel”

    1. The older videos used a microphone which was not the best (I was overseas when recording some of them which meant I did have my superior mic with me). The improved quality is through using the microphone in my study.

    1. I know you’re right Joyce. It’s holding onto that hope that they’ll change that gets us in a pickle.

      I still have hope, I’m just trying not to direct any towards my narcissist. 😛

    1. I wanted for the sad, scared, unloved, neglected and abandoned little boy to feel loved, safe, supported and never alone again.

  12. And these thoughts continue through the death of the narcissist. His service is tomorrow, I hope I find closure for the past 6.5 years.

    I don’t need answers anymore, I have them. Now it’s all about letting go, and getting the freedom ingrained into my unconscious.

    May he rest in peace….

    1. Hopefully he is now the soul he was meant to be before someone crushed him as a child.

      Hopefully a tortured soul who never knew love now only knows love

    2. H, I’m sorry for your loss.
      Embrace your freedom. Good luck and best wishes on your road back to sanity.

      1. Yea right? Even in death they can haunt one’s thoughts. I am sure given another week, I will actually feel the freedom. Thanks Cindy.

    3. Dear H,
      I am sorry that you are experiencing this loss. May your strength and determination see you through the day, and may you find the peace and closure that you seek. God Bless.

      1. thank you Burnt….unfortunately all of his worms are crawling out of wood…I am all the one that seems to be providing answers to many of his other victims. Although I am reliving the shock of it all, at least I am helping others to be in the “Know”…..

      2. H,

        “Although I am reliving the shock of it all, at least I am helping others to be in the “Know”….”

        That has to be a special kind of pain.
        You must be a very generous soul to do so.

        Take care.

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