I can get over what Tracy did, the more I learn about Cluster B personality disorders, how she fits them like a glove, and how this means that her treatment of me is her problem, not mine.
The more I learn about narcissism and BPD, the more I see that I did not deserve how she treated me.
I come to peace with my decision to leave her behind, as I realize that if I stayed, if I managed to preserve the friendship, she would just find some new reason to be upset with me and rage at me some other time.
It was impossible for me to satisfy her demands, which were apparently designed on purpose to be more than what I could actually achieve–especially when she kept sabotaging any efforts by snarking at me, or abusing the kids or her husband right in front of me.
I need to wash off all the nasty things she ever said about me, like so much sewer sludge.
“It’s a huge comfort to know it’s NPD….You realise it’s not you that’s the problem. It’s like being reborn.” —When Narcissism Becomes Pathological
But as for Richard–I don’t know that I’ll ever get over what he did, unless he stops justifying his behavior and comes to me, and repents.
Forgive perhaps, eventually, but lose the hurt feelings? Stop feeling betrayed by my best friend? Stop wishing that he would do the right thing? Probably never.
For the time being, I feel like I’ve gone back into the shell which I had been emerging from:
–afraid to share too much,
–afraid that I’ll make new friends and love them only to find that they’re abusive as well,
–afraid about every move I make because maybe they’ll think I’m horrible for being so quiet, or they’ll accuse me of stalking or being annoying or some other horrible thing.
I didn’t use to be so scared of these things.
And I’m also afraid every week of seeing Richard and/or his wife at church, because they do show up on occasion, leaving me nervous, shaken and afraid of what rumors they might try to spread, or of them wanting to make some sort of confrontation.
Church used to be my refuge, but because they are so close to it, I fear they will show up in my life again some time in the future in some way. I stay away from their church, and wish they would stay away from mine.
Every day, I’m haunted by the memory of how they bullied me, how a trusted and beloved friend betrayed me, the abuses that I witnessed–
–and knowing that the person I respected and believed in as a pious man of God–
–choked his own daughter.
Whenever he told me the things his wife was doing, it wasn’t often, and I’d be amazed because I had no idea these things had been going on.
Since I now know for certain that it was not my imagination, that there was an abusive situation in that household, because of the criminal conviction, I wonder what else goes on there that I’m not aware of.
I only got a glimpse, and it’s often said that what outsiders know about abusive situations is just the tip of the iceberg.
I recall how various details–about the abuse, and about Richard’s violent past and current violent inclinations–just trickled out over the years, and shocked me, making me wonder what else I don’t know.
I haven’t even written here everything that I know or witnessed. I can only hope that Social Services and the police know everything, because they can actually do something about it.
[Update 2/10/15: There appears to have been at least one domestic incident at their current residence in the past three years. The local police beat showed one last May.]