Ya just don’t piss with an abuse survivor. Don’t do it. We don’t take kindly to it.
Before I discovered narcissism and narcissistic abuse, I like to think I was a very nice person. A veritable mouse of a woman. Never said “boo” to a goose. Couldn’t force my lips to pronounce the word “no” to anyone about anything. I hid in corners, fervently wishing to be invisible.
Then you-know-what (shit!) hit the you-know-where (fan!). I discovered narcissism. My psychologist diagnosed me with depression (now pretty much gone, thankfully), generalized anxiety (no kidding!) and PTSD (what was your first clue!?) I went “No Contact.” A relative sent the police to knock on my door and do a Welfare Check. Later, I had to get an attorney to protect myself. My husband also sent a “No Contact” letter to his relatives. He even had to petition a judge to granted him an Order for Protection after receiving a death threat through the mail. The perpetrator later violated the OFP by silently showing up and staring through our screendoor at us. We’ve been pissed with uphill, down dale and six ways from Sunday. And I’ve grown to hate the sound of a knock on my door. I instantly start to shake at the sound.
And you’ve been pissed with too! I’m sure it’s been much worse for you! But abusers can only push a “nice” person so far. Everyone has a breaking point. So to quote my husband’s favorite song by Twisted Sister, “We’re not gonna take it anymore.”
Today I discovered that I’m well beyond my breaking point. In fact, I’m not a nice person anymore. I’m tempted to feel guilty because the situation that triggered this epiphany was so, so “nice.” The woman knocking on my door was “nice.” Her overly made-up face was nice. Her cutesy smile was nice. Her simpering and cooing voice was nice. The tract she offered was “nice.”
I was NOT nice.
For starters, I don’t like when people knock on my door. It’s a trigger. Why wouldn’t it be!? I immediately start shaking rather violently at the sound of a knock. (And they always do it when I’m in my nightgown and robe. It’s like a law or something.)
Today, I didn’t actually hear the knock. But I knew from my PTSD poodle’s woofing that it was a knock. She has four types of woof. There’s the “woof…woof…woof” that means, “Mommy, I gotta go potty now.” There’s the “grrr…woof,woof,woof…grrr” when she plays with her sister. There’s the “woof,woof,woof” that means, “Elmer the Almost-Chocolate Lab is peeing on my favorite bush again and I’m gonna rip his eyeballs out.” And then there’s “WOOFWOOFWOOFWOOFWOOF” which means “There’s someone at the door.” She barks. I start to shake.
I poked my head out the front door. A middle-aged woman stood on my doorstep. She wore a big, ingratiating grin. Too much makeup. Extending a pastel brochure she said, “We’re just inviting everyone to a celebration of Jesus’ death.” She was the epitome of simpering sweetness. Overlooking the doubtful theology behind celebrating mankind killing the Son of God, she was majorly triggering me.
Because she was not being honest. No, not really. I knew she was from a cult and had come to evangelize me. To ensure her spot in Heaven. To score me as a notch in her Bible cover. But she didn’t say it. Didn’t even identify herself by name nor identify her denomination. At least a door-to-door salesman would’ve been honest about wanting to sell me a vacuum or scrubbing brush. She didn’t. Her dishonesty by ommission was triggery.
Worst still, her smile, her coo-ing, her simpering were a trigger in themselves. Whenever my narcissists wanted to treat me inhumanely, manipulate me into some weirdness, force me to dump a friend or love interest, they “sicced” the most smiley, cooey, simpery person on me. To charm me into acquiescence. To love-bomb so I’d swallow their lies. To manipulate me through sweetness. I can see straight through it now. It’s a huge trigger.
Knock on door=trigger.
Smile, coo, simper=trigger
To my surprise, I heard my own voice say firmly, “Don’t ever come to my home again.”
“Oh, okay, ” the Smiler responded. “We’ll make a note of that. And what was your name?”
And that’s when I really saw red. I’d just warned her off my property…and she was prying even further. Having survived the prying, spying and controlling of narcissists who knew everything from my bank account number and PIN to my email password, I value my privacy.
Surprising myself again I said, “YOU DON’T NEED TO KNOW THAT.” And slammed the door in her face. (It felt rather good.)
Turning to my grinning husband I said, “That wasn’t nice. You’re not married to a nice person, Michael. She’s probably out there praying for my immortal bitchy soul right now.”
He grinned even wider, gave me a kiss and said, “I’m proud of you.” He always has my back and vice versa.
Looking back on it now, I realize that yep! I did appear to be the bitch in that scenario. I appeared to be a mean one. The not nice lady. That’s how we narcissism survivors often appear after we “see the light” and won’t take no shit no more. The dysfunctional relatives we’ve gone No Contact with and who resent us for realizing the truth and stepping away from them, can always find ways to manipulate us into appearing bitchy so they can “prove” that we’re the spoiled ones, the mean ones, the dysfunctional ones, the bitches. After all, they are sooooo nice while we slam doors.
But is it true? Are we the bad ones…the bitches?
A solicitor trespasses on my private property. She doesn’t identify herself or her sect. She was dishonest about her true motives. And when warned off, she pried for more information that is none of her damn business. That’s NOT very nice.
Just because she smiled, doesn’t mean she’s nice. Just because I didn’t, doesn’t mean I’m a bitch. Sure, I could’ve been “nicer” to sweeten the pill, but frankly, I’m proud of the strength I showed. I’ve come a long way, Baby, and so have you. We should wear our so-called “bitchiness” with pride.
Yes, we have triggers. In our past life, you could walk all over us and we wouldn’t say “boo.” Now, we may hold our shields up a little too high. Be a little too defensive. A little too reflexive. But we’re strong. We’re honest. We’re direct and blunt. And there’s a certain charm in that, isn’t there?
So don’t piss with Narcissistic Abuse survivors. We’re fed up, pissed off and “We’re not gonna take it anymore.”