All your life, you think one way. Your family is fine. Normal. Apparently, love hurts. But you stay because your family convinced you that strangers would hurt, abuse and rape you.
Then one memorable day, you discovered narcissism. And everything changed. Everything. You rethought every relationship, every event, everything your family ever said or did. Your isolation. All your gut instincts, intuitions and hunches.
Suddenly, you realize that everything you thought you knew is exactly the opposite. You were brainwashed. You didn’t deserve to be punished. The pain you suffered wasn’t karma. The teasing wasn’t funny; it was cruel. Your pain is valid. Your intuition spot-on. And what your family claimed was love for you, was actually selfishness to benefit them. You were brainwashed!
Confront your family at your peril. It’s incredibly rare for a narcissist to admit their true motives or validate your new truth in any way.
But you can bet your bottom dollar they’ll claim that now you’ve been brainwashed. You’re barmy! Your thinking has been completely skewed against them, they insist. You knew what reality was because they told you what it was. How dare you believe anything else!?
“No!” you respond, “I haven’t been brainwashed. You were the ones doing the brainwashing all my life. I’m seeing the truth now.” They scoff, roll their eyes and turn away.
Where have I heard all this before?
Oh yes! It’s coming back to me now. Larry Nassar. That innocent sweet little ol’ doctor sentenced to 175 years in jail who claimed that, “…those patients that are now speaking out…The media convinced them that it was wrong and bad.”
In other words, the brainwashing he had so carefully instilled in all those little girls he sexually molested (and their parents) had slipped. Totally and completely. That is exactly what all or most malignant narcissists will claim when confronted with their wrongdoings and abuse.
They still cling to their “truth” — the La-La Land of their own creation in which they are the innocent, magnanimous hero. They remain in the brainwashing bullshit they worked so hard to ingrain in your gray matter. Then they use narcissists’ favorite trick, projection, to claim you’re the one who’s been brainwashed against them. Seriously, it’s so typical as to be cliché. Hey, Larry! Project much!?!
I’ve often wondered if this isn’t exactly what my family thought when I went No Contact with them. Dad alluded to it when he wrote, “the grievances expressed in your…letter were totally unexpected.” That’s how my parents can claim I’m lying, exaggerating and defaming them. No. I’m not. But I am contradicting the faux family and faux people they created and brainwashed me to believe in. I’m contradicting the brainwashing and all the reasons they had for doing what they did. I call it truth-telling; they call it lying.
In my imagination, I hear them saying, “Lenora used to be such a nice girl ’til she married that Michael fellow. He took her away from us and completely brainwashed her against us!” That would explain why they sent a cop to check on me.
In reality, the opposite is true. It wasn’t a kidnapping; it was an escape from living anywhere near those who had held me against my will. I escaped from my abusers and became unbrainwashed. Yeah, you know exactly what I’m talking about, don’t you. You’ve probably been through it too.
Welcome to the upside-down-and-backwards logic of narcissists. Notice I said “logic.” Narcissists are incredibly logical people which makes them so easy to understand. Their logic isn’t right, but at least they think in traceable if-this-then-that, cause-and-effect patterns. With just a little imaginatinon you can easily trace their mental footprints.
I know “the Wheels of justice turn slowly but exceedingly fine,” but David and Louise Turpin’s trial can’t come soon enough for me. Please tell me it’ll be televised!? From the very first moment the story broke, I told Michael, “Those parents are gonna blame everything on each other and on the kids.” And they’ll probably believe their own lies. Pathological liars! Given how brilliantly Louise Turpin smiles up at her bespectacled, bewhiskered defense attorney, I can just see her thinking, “Hey Cutie-Pie, Wanna play in my jail cell tonight?” She seriously thinks she’s the next Michelle Duggar or Kate Gosselin! She always wanted a reality TV show and now she has one, although she probably didn’t expect it to be set in a courtroom! (As Sheldon Cooper said on The Big Bang Theory, “I wouldn’t coitus her with your genitals!”)
Are David and Louise Turpin at all worried about the whereabouts or well-being of their children?
(I realize it would be antithetical for them to give a shit, but hear me out.) I say no because they want nothing to do with their own flesh-and-blood post brainwashing. Now that their kids are being disabused of any false beliefs à la cult withdrawal, now that their kids know the truth about their parents, Mommy and Daddy Turpin hate their guts even more.
They say Mother Love is the most powerful force on Earth. I used to believe that. But a narcissistic mother will reject an offspring whose brainwashing has slipped.
They say that narcissists need to see a positive reflection of their delightful false selves in our eyes. When they see their secret evil true selves reflected in our eyes, they want nothing to do with us again. Why would they?
Do you remember all those times your mom got really mad and said, “Take that look off your face!”
It used to happen to me. After the first time, I made very, very sure there was no expression on my face. I was perfectly catatonic. But Mom still said, “Wipe that look off your face!”
Could it be that our parents were really yelling at themselves? That they saw their true selves reflected in our clear childish eyes and they couldn’t stand it. They had to be right — even when they were wrong. Humility wasn’t an option. They had to be right at all costs against this sinful baby they’d brought into the world.
If you too have come out of the narcissistic fog, hold onto your truth. Don’t allow yourself to fall under the brainwashing again. It’d be so easy because then they’d “love” us again. Don’t do it! Cling to your truth with your fingernails, toenails and teeth if necessary.
Will your narcissist come around? Will they finally face the truth.
Let me put it like this. Faced with the testimony of 156 victims and a sentence of 175 years in prison, Larry Nassar is still insisting he’s innocent, still blaming his victims – all 156 of them! Will the Turpins (or Turnips if you prefer, and I do because they fell off the turnip truck a long time ago and that’s putting it nicely!) do the same thing? Of course they will! By the time the trial comes around, I expect they’ll come up with some good reason the children just had to be shackled. God knows they didn’t have a good reason when the police came!
Unfortunately, I’ve yet to hear of a narcissist who truly mended.