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.
Schumacher cites the rapid phases this kind of woman goes through when she’s not getting her way or feels she’s losing control. For example, when you challenge her or threaten to end the relationship, she probably exhibits the following emotional states in quick succession:
- Angry and agitated. (You’re treated to a rage episode and/or nasty commentary, blame and accusations.)
- Panicky and apprehensive. (She exposes fleeting vulnerability as she tries to “feel you out” in order to see how and if she can regain control. She may worry that she’s gone too far and is testing the waters before gearing up for another control maneuver.)
- Agitated and threatening. (Because anxiety is ego dystonic–i.e., painfully uncomfortable–she quickly reverts to form and begins to bully you and issue ultimatums and threats of punishment.)
- Depression and despair. (When all else fails, she becomes sullen and withdrawn and suffers a temporary identity crisis.)
At the very least, I know she was going through phases 1 and 3.
From Forcing Submission on the blog Narcissists Suck:
All narcissists do this in one way or another: they don’t merely abuse, they FORCE SUBMISSION TO ABUSE. This makes them God, whose punishing wounds we are to shamefully accept as our fault.
We are not to resist: we are to simply hang our heads as deserving of them… What Makes Narcissists Tick pgs. 104-105
Notice that what is required for this to work is for the narcissist to completely disarm their victims. No right to self-defense is allowed!
This is what they must strip you of first before they can go on to pretend that you are submitting to them of your own free will. Like they deserve such submission and like you’ve freely given it.
…Knowing that a narcissist is driven by their need for power over others, and knowing they are always in search of this headiest drug which is absolute power over others, then you’ll also be aware that they must force your submission in order to feel powerful over you.
All this leads straight to the fact that a narcissist must deprive you of your right to defend yourself to accomplish this.
They will always do this by fraud, lies, and threats. They will bring in their proxies [Richard] to help them get you to submit to that which no one should ever have to submit to.
They want to be able to pretend that your forced submission is a real submission…and this can only be done if they successfully deprive you of your ability to defend yourself.
Can you see how incredibly important it is to be fully aware of your right to NOT submit to abuse? I am convinced that no one breaks free of the power of a narcissist over them until they are able to claim for themselves the right to self-defense.
…It is important to mention here one very tricky sleight-of-hand that a narcissist does to disarm someone from self-defense. This is accomplished by intentionally mislabeling your defensive behaviors as being “retribution” or “vengeance”.
They accuse you of hurting them. They pretend to know your motives and lay the accusation that any efforts you make to defend yourself are actually coming from your desire to hurt them.
If they can convince you that you are being vengeful, or at least if they can convince you that others see you as being vengeful, then they can shut you down. Force your submission once again.
This happens very often when a victim of a narcissist goes into no contact. The pious howling of the narcissist contends that your cutting them off is itself abusive and is therefore coming from a spirit of malice and revenge on your part.
Your act of “no contact”, which is as mild and non-reproachful of a way of dealing with a serial abuser that there is, becomes conflated to be proof of your cruelty, malice, and vengeance.
Don’t fall for such insane logic! Don’t let someone convince you of having motives you don’t have! Don’t let the narcissist disarm you that easily!
I used “no contact” as merely one example of self-defense that can be mislabeled by the narcissist. Any type of self-defense can be characterized this way by the narcissist and will be. Expect it. Be prepared for it. Don’t fall for it.
It was amazing how, after Tracy let loose with these deliberately hurtful words on 7/1/10, she accused me of hurting her again and again over the years–when I had tried so hard to be kind to her and bite my tongue at her snarks, despite all the inner pain and turmoil it caused me to be kind to an abuser.
As if her abuses of me, her snarks and various punishments, were somehow not to be noted at all. It was pure, narcissistic hypocrisy.
This blog post also describes how Anna Valerious’ mother flew into rages and pounded their butts several times a day, forcing them to put out their hands instead of shielding their butts with them. She writes:
I have no doubt now as I look back on this scene repeated so many times over in my life that my mother could pretend I believed I was deserving of every ounce of her rage and punishment because I would cooperate by bending over and not in any way resisting my punishment.
She taught us from our earliest moments that if we ever attempted to run away from her when she came for us that it would be punished with overwhelming force.
So, there were no chases around that bed or the house. No, every vestige of resistance was removed before she would commence pounding our asses.
I have no memory of her ever spanking me while my hands were still covering my backside. She waited as long as it took to get the total compliance that must have made these sessions such a pleasure for her sadistic torture of her children.
My mother removed all other of my rights to self-defense as well, but the above is the most literal example of her demanding that I “bend over for it.”
My mother has for most of her life gotten most of her narcissistic thrills from the children in her power which included other people’s children that were entrusted to her care. (How well do you know your daycare worker, hmm?)
She worked tirelessly to ensure that I didn’t try to defend myself psychologically from her predations as well. All signs of resistance were squelched with ferocity and swiftness.
As I read this, I can just imagine Tracy having the same triumphant reaction as the blogger’s mother did when she got the children to put out their hands. This reaction would have come when I began capitulating to Tracy’s demands over the course of those two or three days starting 8/1/10.
I was once in an emotionally abusive relationship (Phil) that had the elements of physical violence being very likely in the future. My friends and family all grew to hate him, but I didn’t know why.
Yet I kept trying to hold it together, even debased myself by begging him to come back when he–disgusted with my refusal to just sit back and take his abuse without protest–left me.
When he came back again two weeks later, it was to a broken, submissive person who was desperate to do whatever he wanted, just to keep him from leaving again.
If I didn’t want to do something he wanted to do, it meant I didn’t care like I said I did. I felt like I was walking on eggshells, and the slightest thing might push him away. I felt I had to align all my opinions with his, do things exactly as he wanted even though I couldn’t read his mind, or he’d divorce me. He seemed like a different person.
After he broke up with me, I was a broken, submissive person who was desperate to do whatever he wanted, just to keep him from leaving again. That meant even oral sex, which disgusted me, but which he constantly insisted I do.
I kept saying no before, so now that he had me broken and submissive, afraid he would leave again, he pressed his advantage:
One day, when he got me alone, before I had a chance to even talk to him, and without a word, he pulled down his pants. He got a strange, angry, stern look on his face, and pushed my head down–forced, really, since I couldn’t move my head whether I wanted to or not.
I didn’t want to–it was smelly, I didn’t know if he had washed it recently, and I never liked doing this–but I did anyway, because of the unspoken but well-understood threat that he would divorce me if I didn’t.
But a few days later, I did one thing wrong in his eyes, and off he went again. This abusive relationship lasted nine months, but the baggage lasted for years.
Now it was happening again, as a desperate grief, longing to have my BFF and spiritual mentor Richard back again, and loneliness, led me to be that broken, submissive person all over again.
Tracy was emotionally assaulting me the same way that Phil did, forcing me to bend over and do whatever she wanted, if I wanted to be friends with Richard.
Yes, Tracy, you and my abusive ex Phil are exactly alike. I see in you all sorts of things that he did to control and abuse me.
But fortunately, those 6 pages of grievances I wrote in preparing for a conference–and my conversation with my priest–forced me to see that this was not going to work. I stopped capitulating and began defending myself again.
This broke Tracy’s power over me, so she became angry (angrier).
And this was the thanks I got for all the things I did for them, for her: taking in the whole family to our own financial detriment, expensive damages, and cockroach and lice infestations; putting up with all her crap; putting up with Richard’s lack of consideration for other people; giving them money; giving them Christmas and birthday gifts; providing them with free babysitting and use of the computer when theirs was offline; giving them food; treating them to dinner on game nights or their anniversaries; and another thing which I do not want to describe here, but that was major.
All we wanted for these things was kindness and consideration. Instead, I was abused and gaslighted, and blamed for the abuse of me, for two and a half years, accused of “moving in on” Richard, and treated like my simple requests for consideration of my time and feelings, or to simply spend time with or chatting with my best friend, were unreasonable, “paranoid,” even ghastly fauxs pas.
It’s enough to put me off ever offering my home to any other homeless people, because it shows that no good deed goes unpunished. It shows that we were not seen as their friends after all, but as people to use whenever they needed a babysitter or a taxi service, and abuse whenever they no longer needed us for a while.
And Richard sure sold me a bill of goods. He kept saying that everything would be fine once she accepted me.
But even though she did finally accept me, as proof of which he invited me to sushi (which had been forbidden before she accepted me), she took it all back again at some unknown point when she decided I wasn’t behaving properly again.
Even though I had already been informed through that sushi thing that the “trial period” was over, here she was throwing me back into it again without even saying so or saying why, and then punishing me for every little thing I did that she decided to misunderstand.
Shortly after the August 1 attempt at peace, one of the people who came over for their Friday night D&D game, sent Jeff a message through Facebook to call her: She had lost her cell phone somewhere in Richard and Tracy’s house. (Uh-oh.)
This was during the Friday night game, which Jeff no longer attended. When he called, she asked, “What happened?” They talked about it a little, but he gave no details.
She didn’t actually play the game, but was there with her husband each week, and watched the children (who really should’ve been in bed at that late hour, 9pm-1am, but weren’t). Then she said, “They all miss playing D&D with you!”
Jeff told me afterwards that he didn’t want to hear that Richard and Tracy miss playing D&D with him. He wanted to hear that they miss me.
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