By the time I landed in the Emergency Room last Friday, my blood pressure was Holy-Shit over You-Gotta-Be-Kidding-Me! And it wasn't just because I was scared sh*tless of my first time in ER nor my fear that I might have a blood clot in my sore leg. (It wasn't.) It was because of the utter disrespect that had landed in our mailbox that morning.
Last week, the DailyMail shared three photographs of three beautiful women, all of whom suffer from Body Dysmorphic Disorder. All three are convinced they are hideous, deformed freaks. (Their words; not mine.) They go through lives with heads bowed, eyes averted, feeling like they shouldn't be allowed outside with the normal people. They feel unworthy of love. Avoid sex. And one has decided never to pass on her genetics to a child lest she give birth to a "hideous monster." Again, her words; not mine. But here's the thing: All of these ladies are not only perfectly normal, but even beautiful. Stunningly beautiful, in fact.
When was the last time you were outside in the sunshine. Not mowing, not weeding, not trimming, not painting. Not even exercising. Just sitting there. Sitting. Like many of you, I used to work a 9-6 desk job. The sealed-shut windows of my office were tinted so outside always looked dark. There was no fresh air, no sunshine and the only Nature I ever saw was when a flock of turkeys wandered by and began admiring their reflections in my office window. I was chronically burned out and, due to my PTSD and codependence, terrified of everyone, chronically people-pleasing and overworked. Weekends came and weekends went, but I was too tired to even pursue my passions and hobbies. My career looked good from the outside, but I was a mess on the inside. Like so many fed-up Americans, in 2012 my disabled husband and I made a conscious decision to live small, to live in genteel poverty so we could enjoy our lives, live our lives, so I could be free from perpetually slaving in a toxic, dysfunctional work environment that made me miserable. Six years later as a homemaker and writer, I'm still struggling to stop performing "perfectly." I'm still trying to be okay if, now and then, I drop a ball instead of constantly keeping all the balls in the air likes some kind of hyperactive juggler. So in this article, I'm preachin' to myself, Honey!
Last week, I asked the question Did Our Narcissist Every Really Know Us? The consensus was a resounding NO! But there was an interest codicil to the story. A self-professing narcissist emailed me and, in part, said this: "...as a narcissist I always get a bad rep from everywhere. But we do pay attention- a lot of attention or we wouldn’t be able to manipulate so easy. Just my thoughts. I disagree, the narcissist knows you better than you know yourself. ...if they can convince you of the opposite of everything you think you know, if they can convince you to question you -they won. Take it from a narcissist."
With Narcissism Meets Normalcy "this close" to celebrating two million hits (Thank you!), there is one article that leap-frogged over all the others to be crowned The Most Popular. Titled Here’s What Happens When You Tell Narcissists They’re Narcissists, comments have been all over the place. Some people think I did the right thing, some people think I did the wrong thing and a few people think I'm downright nuts. You have the weigh the positives, the negatives, your conscience, your gut, your safety. There are so many considerations! So, what do you think?
With my cruise control set at precisely 59½ mph, the black SUV got right up on my bumper and stayed there for the next twenty miles. Driving down the highway, all I could think was, "Is the driver behind me in a rage that I'm driving the speed limit?" My anxiety grew with each passing mile. That's when it hit me. Rage. My entire life has been controlled by rage. I anticipate it. Imagine it. And fear it dreadfully.
♪♫♪ Who's got triggers? We've got triggers. How many triggers? So many triggers. Well now, don't you frown Just knuckle down and knock on wood! ♪♫♪ Yeah, I took a few liberties with the song Dooley Wilson sang at Rick's nightclub in Casablanca. But doesn't it sometimes feel that we have so many triggers courtesy of narcissistic abuse!? Yeah, tell me about it!
"We apologize for anything we might have done..." This vague, open-ended apology left on my voicemail during the narcissist's hoovering/discard cycle puzzled me. If I were to apologize for something, I'd try to dredge up something real. Something I actually did or said wrong that might've caused pain. Are these subjectless apologies from narcissists actually true apologies, I wondered. Can / do narcissists actually apologize, for real, ever? I posed this question on my Facebook Timeline. Do narcissists usually give open apologies, never mentioning WHAT they're apologizing for (if anything)? One hundred and twenty-six answers later, I figured I might be on to something. ;) Here's what my friends said, shared by permission.