We *seem* to have things sorted out–and they *seem* to finally take responsibility for causing drama (but there’s more to come later)
But then an hour after the last draft I wrote of the above e-mail, I wrote to Jeff,
I *finally* got to finish that talk with Richard. I had things all written down to say, then when I got the chance to say them, realized I was sick of the whole thing and just said maybe one or two things and that “nobody meant any harm.” He noted that our two families just do a lot of things differently.
From what he says, it sounds like there’s been a LOT of miscommunication going on that has fueled everything, things that would have made a difference if I knew about them at the time. Like, I was being protective of him at times, thought he was being mistreated, and had no idea he agreed with Tracy.
I told him that what Tracy overheard was not the whole story; I reminded him how he scolded me later, how I told you about it and we both relented on some things. He says that things are now coming out in the open that should make a huge difference in how everybody interacts.
I told him I’m often clueless on social matters and to PLEASE let me know when I screw something up, that I might get upset but I’ll be better for the hearing.
He also says they’re going to go look at a duplex. Here’s hoping!
Then I sent this to Richard on June 13:
(By e-mail since it’s probably far too busy this weekend for you to be taking another phone call.) I can’t help feeling this enormously icky feeling over some of the things we did that you guys were offended by….
I start thinking, “And all this time he felt this way and I had no clue. I hope he didn’t think less of me because of it, or that I was any less dear to him.”
It makes me feel like a huge heel even though we never, ever, ever meant anything the way that these things apparently came across. I guess we just were blinded by our emotions (I was feeling mistreated and pushed aside, Jeff was upset that his wife was upset) and didn’t think things through.
So I’m sending an apology to you as well. Oh, and you also have my permission to launch something soft and fuzzy at me (pillow, stuffed animal) if I miss a conversational cue.
In response Richard wrote,
There is nothing to fret about. No need for an apology and nothing to worry over. Both you and Jeff are Godsends who extended arms of love and support for a family down in the dumps.
If anything we apologize for causing drama. Our only excuses for any drama is that we lived in [old region] far too long to get it out of our systems before coming out here. 😛
So have no worries, luv. Stop dwelling! No more worrying!
I will try to stop dwelling/worrying. It’s hard for me to do. 😛 One of the introverted traits: We ruminate.
One of the NVLD traits: We tend to latch onto something, like an interest or a hobby or a situation, and it won’t leave our heads for days no matter what we do. (If you doubt it, just look at the size of my “Orthodox Theology” file. Now it’s broken; I think I need a box….)
So I get hit with a double-whammy.
But knowing that we are *OKAY* will be a tremendous help. Hopefully I will be able to latch onto something else soon–say, trying to get through Sho-Gun at last. Less than 300 pages left!
I do have a problem, though: I can’t go to confession, at least with my own priest, for weeks. He’s gone for two weeks, and when he comes back, the first Divine Liturgy will be at the site of Greek Fest. No confessions there, not in the Rec Center with no Jesus icon and people already banging down the doors and milling in for the good eats.
Now I see why confession is so important: Even with the best of intentions, you can still hurt people. I long to hie myself there ASAP.
It seemed like all our problems were now resolved, like they had FINALLY taken responsibility for causing this drama, instead of always putting it on my shoulders. Now that I finally got my apology, I felt I could move on.
You also see that I took much of the responsibility on myself.
At some point, I told him I hoped it wasn’t the beginning of the end, but the end of the beginning. I thought it was the end of the beginning.
You’d think that was the end of it. I had also sent an apology to Tracy, despite Richard telling me I didn’t need to. I decided not to listen to him anymore, and just do it anyway. I asked if we could start over, and we did. Next time I saw her, I felt the wall was gone, and chatted with her easily.
But a year later–after I had been led to believe for some months that Tracy’s restrictions on me were all dropped again (more on this later)–I discovered this “apology” was a lie. That it *was* the beginning of the end.
I discovered that Tracy refused to drop her grudges no matter what I said, no matter what I did, that nothing I did ever satisfied her.
That this was all a big con game she played to screw with my head and drive me insane.
It made me wonder if, when he said “we apologize for bringing drama into your house,” by “we” he meant “I.” If she even knew he had written this. If I could consider it to be an apology from her, or just from him.
But I was dealing with a woman who probably has borderline personality disorder and/or is a narcissist.
Richard himself said that she goes in cycles, fine for a while, then abuse starting up again.
I did my darndest to fight off bad memories and bad feeling, and forgive. And for a while it worked.
But then at some point–I believe during the following winter (2009/2010)–she started cycling again, abusing the kids in front of me, snarking at me, sniping at Richard. And it all went downhill from there. But more on that to come.
Table of Contents
- Bullying of an introvert and probable NVLDer
- My NVLD in a nutshell
- Richard dismisses my experiences
- Summarizing this story
- Why I put this story on the Web–at great personal risk
- I was Sam in search of a Frodo, Anne in search of a Diana
- I finally find my Frodo–who moves in
- Discovering they live in squalor
- Richard reveals his wife’s abuses
- Houseguests From Hell
- Tracy turns jealous of and hostile toward me because I’m an introvert with NVLD
- Tracy’s narcissistic/BPD rage episode at Richard–and Richard reveals his own abuse
- Tracy’s control-freak behavior–to me, in my house
- Tracy overhears me telling Jeff she’s abusive–and wreaks vengeance
- Verge of nervous breakdown as houseguests from Hell abuse our hospitality
- Richard gives me the fateful hugs good-bye
- Tracy’s smear campaign and emotional blackmail begin full-force
- I almost break off the friendship because of Tracy
- Tracy’s unreasonable jealousy even as I take pains to be above reproach
- Their doublespeak and double standards
- Tracy snarks and Richard nitpicks
- The emotional vampires suck me dry–and accuse me of being too sensitive
- My Friend Richard, the Narcissist
- Richard says he hypnotized me without my knowledge
- More on Richard’s hypnotism–and his narcissistic stare
- Richard’s past in the Mafia–and his plot to kill the apartment manager
- Tracy bullies me and tries to control Richard by weeding out friends she doesn’t like
4. More details about Tracy’s abuse of her husband and children
- E-mails and phone call describe how Tracy abuses her husband and children
- More details of Tracy’s abuse of her children
- Early 2010: I speak up about Tracy’s child abuse–and ponder reporting her to authorities
- Early warning signs of Tracy’s abuse and volatility
- I get an inkling of Richard’s own abuse of his children
- How to Bully an Introvert–and Assets of NVLD
- Two Narcissists Tag-Team Bully an Introvert with NLD
- Tracy is nasty to me on the phone
- Fed-up, I decide to end the friendship if Tracy does not stop bullying me
- Tracy Mindscrews me with Constantly Changing Rules, “Okays” me then takes it back without telling me, Violates my Privacy by reading my e-mails to Richard
- I must be accepted as I am–introversion, NVLD and all–or you’re out
- Now Richard Screws with my Mind
- Tracy drives away another friend (Todd) with narcissistic rage, manipulation, lies and a smear campaign
- I discover the restrictions are still up after 7 months–and ponder ending the friendship
- Tracy tells Jeff a different story: I have already been “approved” as Richard’s friend
- Richard gaslights me into thinking I’m a stalker
6. Sexual Harassment from some of Richard’s friends
- Sexual Harassment from some of Richard’s friends
- Disturbing Revelations from Richard about Tracy and our time sharing a house
- Revealing e-mails I drafted to Richard: proving I felt abused and bullied, and witnessed abuse
- We seem to have things sorted out–and they seem to finally take responsibility for causing drama (but there’s more to come later)
- E-mails proving my innocence, that Tracy lied in 2010, that I respected boundaries, and that I asked for a “signal”
- Richard mansplains me, denies that his friends sexually harassed me, and refuses to respect my wishes
7. Without warning or explanation, tensions build
- Without warning or explanation, tensions build as Richard and Tracy both begin acting like lunatics
- I begin to wonder if the Richard I know–is real or a fake persona
- Richard decides I’m no longer worth his time or respect–because of POLITICS–as he gets into the TEA Party
- Richard goes off the deep end and disses us for not buying into his extreme right-wing politics
- Richard grows distant and Tracy’s insane jealousy flares up
- Richard rips into me publicly and I suspect our friendship is all a fake
- I feel increasing coldness from Richard and Tracy as I “unfriend” their Republican candidates and “friend” Obama and Feingold
- Time to scapegoat me into thinking I’m the problem–and I realize my “BFF” is a fraud
- I confront Richard with how he’s been treating me–so he stonewalls me and threatens to beat up my husband
- Resolution: I apologize–and write the fateful e-mail about the fateful hugs
- Part One: Tracy’s narcissistic rage against me–but I am innocent of all her charges
- Part Two: Tracy enjoys verbally abusing me, then tries to silence me–so I tell everyone
- Part Three: Jeff’s WTF moment: Judas (Richard) knows I’m innocent, but psychotically rages at Jeff
- Part Four: Their DARVO lies lead us to break off relations with our abusers
- Why we should tell everyone we have been abused
- E-Mails to Friends About the Incident, written in first two months
- 1. To Mike and my mother
- 2. E-mails describing pain of breaking up with a close friend
- 3. E-mails spilling all the abuse, to my closest friends
- 4. E-mails to Todd describing what happened
- Why we should not be forced to befriend a BFF’s abusive spouse
- Why I refused to “confer” with Tracy–and how Richard betrayed me
- Tracy refused to accept the NVLD and introversion–but they are real
- Resolving conflict: The difference between friends and frenemies
9. The fallout; a second chance?
- I send an apology–and we’re all blocked on Facebook
- Struggling to process what the F**K just happened
- E-mail to Mike: processing my pain
- Pondering forgiveness vs. giving in to the dark vortex
- Shock: Richard and Tracy at my church
- About Richard justifying Tracy’s verbal abuse because I am shy and quiet
- The monster comes back out: Tracy punishes me for long-dead issues
- How Tracy’s e-mails displayed narcissism
- I suggest a six-month break
- I refuse to give in to Tracy’s emotional blackmail
- Tracy blamed others for her abuse
- Tracy tried to force me to submit to her abuse
- Grief over losing my best and closest friend–for no good reason
- Written 2010: Grief over being falsely accused
- Written 2010/2011: Grief over being abused–and the abuser getting away with it
- Written 2010/2011: I see Tracy hanging out of the window of their minivan, like a crazy woman
- Written 2011: Grief that my abusers kept coming to my church but not apologizing to me
- Blog Post for my friends: Fighting the Darkness (Written in February 2011)
- Can we destroy something God put in place?
- An old friend shows me that Richard and Tracy were deceivers, never friends
- The long, dark night of my soul as I doubt God exists–because my spiritual mentor betrayed me
- I start doubting Tracy was ever truly a Christian–so it’s okay to separate myself from her fellowship
- Grief felt on 6/12/11
- 2011 Facebook post: Original form of Losing Your Best Friend?–Or, Narcissistic Webs
11. Struggle to regain normalcy
- Describing Richard’s narcissism
- Realizing how Richard manipulated me into doing things I shouldn’t
- Was Richard’s betrayal driven by Narcissism–or Stockholm Syndrome?
- Tracy: a woman who abuses a man
- Richard’s lack of action made him a passive abuser
- Fear of it all happening again with new friends–but relief as well
- Written early or mid 2011: working through the grief, pain and anger
- How Richard and Tracy’s views on parenting are wrong
- Running into Richard and Tracy at church/the store/Greekfest a year later
12. Musings on how Christians should treat each other
13b. Thinking of celebrating the first anniversary
14. Updates on Richard’s Criminal Charges
- Introduction to this section: Richard’s Criminal Charges
- UPDATE 7/26/11: Richard is charged with abusing his daughter; I report them to CPS
- UPDATE 9/14/11: I learn that Richard choked his daughter
- UPDATE 10/4/11: Richard is convicted of choking his daughter
- UPDATE 10/23/11: After his conviction, Richard comes to my church
Sequel to this Story: Fighting the Darkness: Journey from Despair to Healing