Warning: The following contains venting of anger, to get it out of my heart and onto the page, to make the story authentic, and to show other victims of abuse that I feel your rage.
Tracy vilified, demeaned, cussed at, humiliated, and belittled me for something I had not said, had never said–and then blamed me for her behavior.
(A month later, she even accused me of needing to “grow up” and get over hurt feelings for actions [her verbal abuse] caused by my behavior. This is classic victim blaming! She has only herself and her temper to blame for the end of the friendship, but of course she blames me.)
Then she turned it around on me when Jeff said that throwing around F-bombs was not helpful, saying that I somehow had been “hurting” her for “the past two and a half years.”
Hurting her??? All I had done was be myself and go about my usual routines and live day by day and try to be polite and nice to her and try to maintain a friendship with my BFF!
Maybe it was because I didn’t just shut up and pretend that her behavior was perfectly normal and justified.
But I have never been one to sit and be quiet while my friends are being bullied: I keep putting myself into the fray, setting myself up for fire to come at me, by sticking up for my friends/husband.
I didn’t talk directly to her about her abuse, which would be dangerous, but I was honest with Richard about it, and she overheard me telling Jeff about it.
It was extremely insulting: I am not and have never been the type to go messing around on my husband. I had never, ever propositioned Richard or touched him in anything like a sexual manner.
Yet I was being treated not only as if I had done so, but as if I had always been doing so. It was a strange reality shift that made me feel like I was in an alternate universe.
All I did was remind Richard of something he himself had done to express his thanks and platonic caring, something that was completely innocent and perfectly fine for platonic friends to do–
At least, that was how I perceived it, since this was what he told me after he found out I first thought he was making the moves on me.
No, hands never went to where they shouldn’t. These hugs were completely nonsexual, no kissing, nothing. Just things that you could do with a sister. I saw him give this very same kind of hug to one of his daughters.
He never said these hugs were somehow verboten now. In fact, he had said more than once that while it was no longer okay to use each other’s shoulders as pillows, hugs were fine.
Through these hugs, he expressed the thanks that I never got from Tracy for taking her in despite having this sprung on us, for not kicking her out despite all the crap she pulled, for feeding and sheltering her family for six weeks of strained resources, dwindling money, no room, messes and noise all over the house, constant work and the stress of having a hostile person living in your house.
She never thanked me for any of this, and got furious with Richard and/or me for the way he thanked me.
These hugs reassured me of his friendship after all the crap that had gone on, all the drama that Tracy had brought into my house for six weeks. This reassurance of his friendship was badly needed after the six weeks Tracy had lived with us.
And it was badly needed now in July 2010 after all the crap that had been going on, all the ways he had cut me down and made me feel like a whiner when I complained about how he was treating me lately.
I reminded him of the hugs, describing them so he would remember them, so that I could find out why he had stopped doing them after he moved out. Had he just forgotten? Was his friendship for me declining? What was it? I didn’t express these things, but they were questions I had.
I had brought up the hugs once before; not only did he not freak out as if I had propositioned him, but he remembered them and said that he was holding off (same as I was at that time) because in those days Tracy had been acting very jealous.
But those days had long since passed, and we had been hugging freely in front of her and others for a long time. They just hadn’t been like the ones I now reminded him of, the ones he gave me to express our friendship and thank me for all I did for his family, the ones I also saw him give one of his daughters.
At least, that was how I understood them at the time. As I explained them to Jeff that evening, I said, “At least, that’s what he told me,” because I began to realize that maybe Richard had meant more with those hugs than he’d let on.
Why else would he let Tracy treat me like this instead of explaining to her the truth, that it was much ado over nothing?
I began to feel tricked, lied to, used, manipulated, exploited because of my naïveté and a gullibility which I had unwisely brought up in our conversations once.
I began to feel angry not just with Tracy for her insults, but with him for his duplicity.
But anyway, let’s back up to the time before Jeff got home from work. Tracy had told me, “Don’t go crying to Jeff because we don’t need the headache.”
Um….EXCUSE me? And you are WHAT authority over me? Talk about violating boundaries! Talk about a control freak, trying to control even what I tell my own husband about her abuse!
This, by the way, is yet another thing that abusers do, try to silence their victims.
Then they will pull your face close to theirs and through snarling lips and gritted teeth tell you that if you try to expose their bad deed they will destroy you. This person knows what they are doing is wrong. –Anna Valerious, Narcissist or Psychopath, Narcissists Suck
Right after she wrote me this, I saw a message in the corner of the computer screen that Jeff had a new e-mail–from Tracy. So I copied it to Jeff:
She sent him an e-mail labeled “sigh” that said–as if I were this whiny little tattletale–
–that I probably already told him what was going on,
–that they “valued our friendship” (HA–You value our money!),
–that we were going to have a “conference” after she got home from work where she would tell me things I wouldn’t like but supposedly “needed to hear.”
Notice she didn’t bother to ask about our own plans before making this decision: Our son had a T-ball game that evening.
Since I never intentionally harmed her, since I tried to be polite and nice to her at all times, this was ridiculous.
Whatever she was going to say, I’m certain that I did NOT “need to hear” ANY of it.
I won’t let an abuser who probably has borderline personality disorder and/or is a clinical narcissist tell me how to behave “properly.” She doesn’t even know how, herself.
So: Tracy raged at me, demeaned, cussed at and humiliated me, insulted me again and again, treated me like a naughty child who needed to sit and take whatever she threw at me, accused me of needing to “grow up” (August 1) for standing up for my dignity.
Then she told me not to go “crying” to my husband about what she was saying “because we don’t need the headache.”
And then to top it all off, she posted on Facebook to all her friends and family that she was having “a GREAT day” because she no longer had to “sit back and be quiet and nice.”
(If she thinks that she was being “quiet and nice” before, then she’s not just Borderline Personality Disorder, she’s Delusional Disorder as well!)
To an abuser like Tracy, raging is basically the equivalent of a satisfying bowel movement: Once it’s over, you feel much better, and forget the pain you went through getting it out.
And the abuser expects you to just “grow up” and “get over” being crapped all over, thinks there’s something wrong with you if you don’t.
But don’t believe this lie of the abuser, either: The responsibility belongs to the abuser that you got hurt, not to you! You are not responsible for someone abusing you!
So they attack just because this is a golden opportunity to dump a load of projection and projective identification on someone. It’s a golden opportunity to feel powerful by having a powerful effect on someone.
They feel great afterwards. They not only relieve their moral constipation by dumping their load on you, they get high off the power rush in trampling you or tearing you to pieces.
And what’s to restrain those urges? Any morals? Any conscience?
So, if this has ever happened to you, you probably just had a close encounter with a malignant narcissist. Be glad that you had to serve as her toilet only once in your life. –Kathy Krajco, The Rewards of Befriending a Narcissist
It was all I could do to hold myself back, not respond in kind, since I knew that it would just make things worse, yet she just kept getting worse anyway.
I did say a few angry words, because she had pushed me too far this time, but still held back on what I could have said. But of course, I was not allowed to defend myself.
Then she e-mailed my husband in calmer, “adult” words and talked about discussing this like adults–
Yeah, lady, all you have to do is ACT like an adult and then we can discuss it like adults.
I was certainly not the one acting like a child–that was all on her. I barely said a word to her.
I saw her do the exact same thing to Todd, speaking to the general forum in “adult” words after having raged on him like a screaming banshee, while he tried to respond in a more adult fashion.
Because of the distorted perceptions that the abuser has of rights and responsibilities in relationships, he considers himself to be the victim.
Acts of self-defense on the part of the battered woman or the children, or efforts they make to stand up for their rights, he defines as aggression against him.
He is often highly skilled at twisting his descriptions of events to create the convincing impression that he has been victimized. —The Mind of the Abuser, Sam Vaknin
The sociopath does not accept the blame for any of the harm and hurt they cause other people.
In fact the sociopath is convinced that the blame for what happened belongs with someone other than themselves, even when this clearly is not the case.
They don’t care that they damage and destroy other people’s lives. Their only concerns are winning the game and getting what they want. —How to Recognize a Sociopath
A sociopath can do hideously cruel and immoral things to other people without feeling any guilt. —How to Recognize a Sociopath
The victim of a sociopath may feel physical and/or emotional pain as a result of what has been done to them. The sociopath cannot identify with the misery they are causing for the other person.
Instead they are derisive of the pain of their victims, and they may use the upset they cause to their own advantage. —How to Recognize a Sociopath
And all this after we had done all sorts of things to help them out and be there for them until they could get back on their feet, even went way out of our way to help them, even begging friends for money for them so they wouldn’t be evicted, out of a simple generosity that wanted nothing back but friendship.
It was all quite disgraceful.
They inflict pain on others and actually enjoy doing it. —Joyful Alive Woman, Behaviors and Attitudes of the Narcissist
Narcissists are addicted to the high they get from harming others. Yes, they DO act out of malice, because they will to hurt you.
That’s no accident: they hurt you on purpose and as much as they can. But only because hurting you makes them feel good. –Kathy Krajco, Malignant Narcissism and Evil
She also called me too stupid to understand, just because I said “I don’t understand” to Richard and tried to find out what the heck this was all about, rather than just rolling over and saying, Oh hey, I deserve all this you’re giving me.
When I saw what Tracy posted about me, it disgusted me that she would actually ENJOY hurting somebody. That’s sociopathic. So I blocked Tracy.
“Evil Is Taking Pleasure From Causing Pain or Harm” (Michele Moore, Happiness and Evil).
“He thrived on intimidating me. He derived pleasure from causing me pain” (Tina Swithin, Taking Pleasure From Pain).
Allow yourself to really think about the selfishly evil use of empathy of the narcissist. They use it to know (and enjoy) exactly how they are making you feel as they use and abuse you. That is what we call sadistic.…They pervert their ability to empathize and use it to selfishly exploit others to their own ends, to find pleasure in the pain they inflict, as well as to grant themselves pity when they least deserve it. –Anna Valerious, They DO Have Empathy–Just Not For You
I posted on Facebook, publicly for all to read (since I might as well if Tracy was going to post nasty crap about me for all our mutual friends to read), a few posts about losing my best friend because of jealousy, how they were telling me the friendship wasn’t over but it was, because “I’m SICK of being bullied, sick of it, sick of it!”–and how this was the thanks I got for being there for his every need, emotional and financial.
No, I didn’t say who I meant. Yes, this was visible to Richard, who I saw go online around this time, leaving the usual “scat” on my newsfeed from his Facebook games.
But he said nothing, too beaten down and emasculated by Tracy to do anything not okayed by her. And because playing stupid games was more important to him than salvaging a friendship.
Posting on my news feed was the only way to get any messages to him at all, now that Tracy had taken everything over. So during that afternoon/evening I posted messages about being gravely misunderstood, about jealousy destroying a dear friendship, things like that.
It was not just to get emotional help from my real friends who would never do these things to me, but to send messages to Richard that this was not right, not right at all, that I was SICK of Tracy’s bullying, that it was indeed bullying, and that I wasn’t going to take it anymore.
One of my friends responded,
I have known you, although admittedly not well, for quite some time, and I’ve never known you to get this upset. Truly, this doesn’t seem to be within your character. Something really serious must have happened.
My brother sent me a message, asking who I’m not friends with anymore. I said, “My friend Richard. His wife has gone into a jealous frenzy.”
My brother’s wife said, “be careful, keep your distance let them cool off for awhile.”
I said, “They can have all the time in the world to cool off. I’m sick of the crap I’ve had to put up with from her over the years.”
Sometime around this time, I also blocked Tracy on Facebook, disgusted by her posts about having such a wonderful day because she was abusing me.
These posts came before mine, making me feel like–since we shared several friends on Facebook–I had to do damage control, show that there’s another side to the story, that Tracy wasn’t as justified or in the right or reasonable as she wanted to seem.
No, I didn’t reply to her posts directly, because that would’ve told everybody she knew–including her family and complete strangers to me–whom she was referring to.
And, of course, responding with something like, “The fact that you’re having so much obviously orgasmic pleasure from ripping me to pieces for NOTHING is proof that you are a nasty, horrid, abusive person who I don’t want in my life anyway”–would have only led to a Facebook flame war.
So even though Tracy was telling me the friendship wasn’t over, even though her words sure made it sound like it was–I was saying that yes indeed, it was over.
I never wanted to be her friend in the first place after seeing how she treated Richard and the children, wanted nothing to do with her after the way she treated me while living with us, only tolerated her for Richard’s sake,
and now even Richard wasn’t worth the price I had to pay to have her in my life. He was proving to be a very bad friend, disloyal and deceitful, willing to throw even dear and loyal friends under the bus for the sake of peace in his house. (I was hardly the first one.)
I wanted nothing more to do with this drama queen Tracy.
I was sick to death of every move I made, everything I said, everything I wrote, being interpreted by her through green-colored glasses.
I was sick to death of her histrionics, of having to explain myself, of having to apologize to her, but her not apologizing to me.
I was sick to death of being told I was somehow offending and hurting her again and again, just by being my natural introverted self, or by wanting to spend time with my BFF,
while she didn’t seem to care one bit that she was hurting and offending me constantly and deliberately.
What I initially thought was her decision to end the friendship, became my own. But I was e-mailing Jeff at work about what was going on; he told me, “Ok: stay low, stay out of sight, and don’t rile her. Let Richard & I deal with it.” He said we had no time to be doing some “conference.”
I wrote to him just before 2pm,
She’s screaming at me in messages about inappropriate behavior and crap.
After all the crap going on the past few weeks, I just felt the need to remember the hugs Richard and I used to have. Just to make him go “aww.” Somehow she saw it and went ballistic….
I’ve been trying to deal directly with him, but she keeps intercepting and yelling at me for it….
I’m so stunned by it all that I can’t even cry. I just don’t understand. I don’t know what’s going through Richard’s head because I’m not allowed to talk to him.
She’s talking about “inappropriate behavior” over the years.
What? I told him to tell me if something makes him uncomfortable. And I see how he jokes around with other people, male and female, and feel that must be in the bounds of “okay” for him.
I just don’t get it. And she calls me stupid for not getting it. And crows on her FB page about how happy she is right now.
She talks about preserving the friendship, but screw this. I’m not going to be friends with either of them anymore. They’ve both caused me so much freaking drama over the past few years that I’m sick and tired of it.
If you saw the way she’s been abusing me in her messages….
She’s talking about some sort of conference tonight. We’re supposed to have a [T-ball] game tonight.
I don’t want to sit in some sort of conference with the one who you know has been so mean to me over the years.
She ripped on everything I ever did or said, and I don’t want to listen to more of it just because she thinks I “need to hear it.”
I’m disgusted with Richard for letting her treat me like this.
Todd saw my posts and guessed who it was about, having been through this himself.
At first, I wasn’t going to tell him. But then I realized that he and I had this in common, and he was the best person for me to talk to.
He knew what it was like, what Richard and Tracy were really like, and how it felt to be Richard’s close friend but suddenly jilted because Tracy went all psycho-b**ch on you.
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
- 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
- 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
- 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
- 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
- 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
- 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