Losing My Grip



Do you still remember the first time we held hands? I do. I will never forget. We were walking alongside the river. I had seen you walking there on numerous occasions previously. I would pass you and see you ambling along, completely lost in your own world. I would lean against a nearby tree and watch you as you would stand on the riverbank and gaze out across the flowing river.

I would stare at the back of your head as I concentrated on working out what you would be thinking. Occasionally you would take out your ‘phone and take pictures of the river before standing once again in silent contemplation. You wore simple, sensible outdoors attire for these frequent walks. Your only concession to glamour was the scarlet scarf you wore about your neck. You were a creature of habit always taking this walk in early evening at the same time during the summer and then on the cusp of dusk through autumn and winter. You did it every day and each day you would spend some time staring out across the flowing water.

Once in a while you would make this walk with a friend and it was through her that I plotted to get to know you. You and your friend would both drive to the car park and then meet by the café on the edge of the car park and the path that wound along by the river’s edge. I noticed how you always arrived and left independent of one another. It was as if your friendship relied on being contained to this walk and nothing else. After seeing this ritual on many occasions I saw you drive away but your friend went to the café. This was my chance. Taking a replica of the scarf that you wore I entered the café and interrupted your friend as she stood in a short queue.

“Excuse me,” I smiled, ” I was walking along the path and your friend dropped her scarf, I have it here.”

“Oh thank you,” your friend replied and smiling took the scarf from my hand.

“Not a problem, did you enjoy your walk?” I asked pleasantly.

“Yes it is a lovely spot here isn’t it?”

“Absolutely and no matter what the weather or the season there is always something different to see,” I explained. She nodded and using my customary charm I found myself sat with the friend and enjoying a warm drink together. It was in the course of that discussion, a polite conversation on a chilly autumnal late afternoon that I learned your name. Once armed with this information and remembering the other shards of your life that your friend had mentioned in innocent reference I soon tracked you down on Facebook.

There I worked through your profile, admiring your photographs and finding more about you. I spent time checking through the films and books that you had liked. They were not many, only a half a dozen in each category and I noticed that Memoirs of a Geisha was one of your favourite books. I knew this book and also its author. As I worked through the pictures I saw the ones of the river where you often stood and I beneath each one you had posted the same quotation which you attributed to someone who I knew was the author of Memoirs of a Geisha.

A little later I saw you stood contemplating the river once again and this time I walked up besides you.

“Never give up for even rivers someday wash dams away,” I said. You turned and smiled at me.

“Arthur Golden,” you answered naturally recognising the quotation and referring to the author of one of your favourites books.

“Correct,” I smiled, “is that why you look out over this river every day, to give you hope?” I asked.

You looked at me as if evaluating whether you should admit me to your confidence. Your did not take long to decide.

“Absolutely. It gives me hope that by looking on something so natural and beautiful as this that it will wash certain things away.”

I knew from the way you had answered that there was more to tell but now was not the time. We talked a little while and then I left you to your contemplations. After that you always said hello and we stood and talked as little by little I was given entry into your world. From standing at that same point we moved on to walking along the river bank as we got to know one another. I took care to walk in step with you. I knew the places you liked to stop and enjoy the view, since I had watched you do so on many times before. Like other fragments of your life that I had learned, I had memorised this and used it to stand with you and comment in an appreciative fashion about the river, the trees and the way the light would strike the surface of the water.

Carefully, like the skilled artisan that I am, I would peel away a piece of your life and add it to my own as I grew to know more about you. You spoke of work, your home life and your interests. I noticed you never met your friend for a riverside walk again and it appeared that I had supplant her as your riverside companion. Each time we would walk, talk and then have a drink in the café as my knowledge about you grew. I ensured that I said the things I knew would bring about the best response from you. I knew what to say to make you interested and attentive. I could tell, for I had seen such looks before, that the way you looked at me meant more than just companionship.

Then after perhaps two weeks, maybe a little more, as we strolled along that peaceful riverbank I reached out and took your hand in mine. You did not hesitate. There was no resistance and you allowed my larger hand to engulf yours as you slipped your hand into mine. The movement was natural. You looked at me with a smile and I saw the light flare in your eyes as you felt my power surging from within. You did not let go of my hand once on that walk. In fact that became your signature. The fact you always loved to hold my hand.

No matter where we were you would take it and hold on, even twisting your movements to avoid letting go. It was as if you had vowed that whenever you took my hand you would not let it go until I decided. I saw it as your signal of intent to care for me. It was a marker, your way of telling me that no matter what happened you would always be by my side and ready to care for me.

The handholding created this marvellous connection between us. I felt your love and admiration flowing through this handhold and in return you got to savour my brilliance. It was a fantastic connection that had been fashioned in high heaven. The moment our fingers entwined the connection was established and we both got something from it. That was why it worked. That was why we worked. That was why I worked you as I did.

I took full advantage of that but then I think you wanted me to didn’t you? That was why you always held my hand until you let me down. It was only once and you let go. You were never supposed to let go. You never had before despite everything I did, you always clung on. You always gave me that reassurance but then you took it away. I realised that you had no choice but to let go but you still let me down when you did it. I can never forgive you for that. Ever.

Sometimes I can still feel your grasp sliding from mine, the fingers slipping by and then.


Lightning does strike twice.

21 thoughts on “Losing My Grip

  1. Enthralled says:

    I have been doing lots of internal reflection lately and thought I would share. Mainly my childhood and life before the narcissist. The experiences which have forged me. Perhaps it will strike a chord I have been doing lots of internal reflection lately and thought I would share. Mainly my childhood and life before the narcissist. The experiences which have forged me. Perhaps it will strike a chord with other contagions, or maybe these things have nothing to do with its manifestation.

    I will start by saying that autism runs strongly through my family with a number of us born with Aspergers and there is a strong link between this and contagion. In teaching sarcasm/ facetiousness and to recognize cues – as adults they function well and you will hardly notice the signs unless you are aware. The whole family contributes to their development – because in my world family is everything. Main traits = impossibly stubborn – self-righteous and things which others would relate to OCD.

    Whilst I cannot identify any narcissists in the family – there are several men who (normals? Closer to sociopathic scale? Not sure). Fearless; family and protecting it is their life. High emotional intelligence – so effortless = but they do not give a crap what others think – nor if they say something to hurt the feelings of people outside the family. For example – my dog would be safe, they might moan but would not do anything to hurt a creature I love. The neighbor’s dog causing problems would not fare so well. Warnings would be given first and they would not lie about their actions either. They elicit loyalty from those close to them easily. Break their trust and suffer the consequences.

    As a dyspraxic person, I learned to ride my bike from my dad forcing me for two days to get back on every time I fell off. Covered in bruises and my knees a mess – you do not give up. While such lessons (and there were many in childhood), were hard – being laughed at by the other kids because I could not ride a bike – or spell my own name (dyslexic) was devastating.

    I could disagree, voice my opinions and have many heated discussions, and know when the dust settles nobody would hold a grudge – family is family. Had to be careful voicing issues from outside the family – would not want someone to land in the hospital for being an idiot. Mitigating their natural response toward anyone who hurt a member of the family/ or who pissed them off could be a challenge.

    For example, my ex (non-narc), beat up the father of the kid who was bullying our son – with the promise that he would pay a visit every time his kid touched him. He also brought a punch bag and taught our boy to fight. The ability to know how far one can go without police involvement seems to be innate – plus the intimidation factor. Despite a number of near scrapes, not one has a criminal record. I am guessing that a narc might think twice about becoming entangled with them – so I was – I think – sheltered to some degree.

    Bad boys can be salvation and good guys narcs… Maybe not in the case of a lesser tho.

    Quite a few contagions in the family. We do care what others think and see different motivations. Always quick to know when a problem is developing and mitigating the men’s response accordingly. No blood or broken bones at the bbq – thank you very much. We have the power to stop them – and we do.

    Turned out longer than expected – HG – you have permission to use it in any way you like – hope it might add some understanding to contagion.

  2. Francine says:

    HG is this a true account. Did you actually stalk this woman? Did she become your intimate partner primary. It sounds like she escaped you. A little more details please.

    1. HG Tudor says:

      Yes, it is true.
      I did not stalk her, I made her mine.
      Yes, she became an IPPS.
      As for the rest you will have to learn more from the Asylum of the Grotesque.

      1. Anna says:

        Why is it called “Asylum of the Grotesque.”?

        1. HG Tudor says:

          Answered previously.

          1. Anna says:

            Thank you
            I will enjoy searching for the answer HG
            It is amazing what other interesting things there are to stumble upon during the search.
            Oh it sounds wonderful.
            I am now going to search for the meaning of “The Asylum of the Grotesque”
            I hope I do not get lost inside it…. heheeh

      2. Joa says:

        “I made her mine”.

        Even if I was on my deathbed, resigned to my fate, and peacefully passing away to eternal nothingness, this kind of declaration, will immediately resurrect me, ha ha ha 😀

        I immediately feel the pulsating and start to glide up 🙂

        Style very sililiar to N2.

        I will never get rid of the weakness, even admiration, for such a direct… command.

        If this order applies to me, of course 😀

        Human is a strange creature.

        1. A Victor says:

          Hi Joa, when I first arrived at narcsite, I thought that was the height of “romantic”! What we all aspire to, right? Now, I still pick up on it, still feel that, as you say, pulsating, but now I realize that it’s no longer what I actually desire and I don’t allow it to rise. But, I do get where you’re coming from, it is difficult to resist! Damn narcs.

          1. annaamel says:

            I can’t imagine a person who is not a narcissist saying something like this. It’s just not a thing. I can understand it sounds appealing (we’re so amazing they must possess us) but it’s a huge red flag.

          2. A Victor says:

            I agree, it is narcspeak if there ever was some! And yes, a huge red flag!

          3. A Victor says:

            Oh, but I should add, for me it’s not about me being amazing, it’s about allowing them to take my responsibility, giving it over to them, that is the appeal for me. And it is entirely unhealthy for me.

          4. annaamel says:

            Do you remember on a different thread, AV, where I empaths to try to place themselves into a narc school, and you suggested that you feel ‘elite’ but you’d only ever been involved with somatic narcissists? I think I’m seeing an inclination in some of your comments here and there towards somatic traits in partners, in men. I suspect this might be why your entanglements have so far been with somatics.

          5. A Victor says:

            Haha, yes, Annaamel! I do remember that thread and even thought of it while I was writing these comments here! That’s interesting, that you’d also think of that and I think you’re right, we may have hit on why Somatics are my “go to” ! 😁 They’re not anymore, at this point, I want only to be narc -free, but another puzzle solved! Thank you!

          6. Joa says:

            AV, it’s the other way around for me.

            This is exactly, what I really want.

            But I know, I can’t afford it. I know, how it starts, how it evolves, and how it ends.

            My concept of “being someone’s” does not mean being a slave, a servant, a doormat.

            So, all I can do is enjoy the moment.

          7. A Victor says:

            Hi Joa, it is appealing in a way, I want to feel a bond with someone, like with my kids sort of, I’m theirs, their mother, no one else can be that to them, they’re mine, as in I will do more for and care more about them than any one else’s kids. So in that respect I like the idea of a person that’s in a romantic capacity being “mine” and me “his”, and I believe I could get the same pulsating effect from this person? I don’t know for sure, it hasn’t happened for me. But the idea of one “owning” me, no, not now. I would see that as a red flag, as Annaamel said. I do understand the appeal and I am not certain that I could resist even now, it is an addiction for me. But I plan to resist, in my head, at this point should another one come into my life.

          8. A Victor says:

            Hi again Joa, I wanted to tell you that I really appreciate our conversations, I really feel like they are between two women, just talking, sharing our experiences and views, I really enjoy that and find it refreshing. Thank you!

          9. Joa says:

            AV, me too to you and all the girls here – thank you!

            Lots of interesting stories and thoughts.

            And thank you, HG, for allowing us to have these conversations and for inspiring many thoughts.


            I wouldn’t be so strong if it wasn’t for women. They are the ones who selflessly give me a hand. They create (we create) this delicate, almost invisible web on which we all hold. Sometimes all it takes is a look into a woman’s understanding eyes to recharge my energy in 5 seconds 🙂

          10. A Victor says:

            What a beautiful way to put it Joa, and I agree, women can be a great source of support and wisdom. I have gained from many here also, it is a wonderful, beautiful web!

  3. Mon says:

    Could be so beautiful if it were real. I could cry at so much deceit, meanness and calculation. Because someone can stage a situation like that to get in touch and mean it from the heart. Someone who is genuinely interested and allows connection. I feel cold reading these lines. What a black and icy heart. An empty place. Horryfing

    1. Joa says:

      It’s worse, when that’s what attracts you 🙂

      My brother-in-law followed my sister for 3 years. He is much younger than her. She was already a student at the university at the time, and he was just a high school student. And she was in a relationship with someone else.

      When he finally succeeded, she discovered a lot of pictures of herself from various places in his room. Especially in his bed.

      Both of us thought the obsession was adorable.

      Unfortunately… I still think so. And my sister, even though it is now in a huge devaluation, cherishes this memory …

  4. thoushaltnotbeignored says:

    That’s rather “stalky”.

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