Losing friends can be particularly difficult for introverts because we don’t surround ourselves with people. We prefer a few intimate friends to lots of less-intense friendships, and deep discussion with one person to a party full of festive chitchat.
For us, losing one good friend can leave a larger hole in our lives than it might for an extrovert with 25 best friends. –Dr. Irene S. Levine, The Inside Scoop on Your Introvert Friends
The really sad thing is all they had to do was apologize. I already apologized for hurting them because in no way did I mean to hurt anybody by anything.
All I needed from them was to admit to going over the top with the expressions of anger, acknowledge misinterpreting my e-mail, listen to what I really meant by it, admit to having been abusive–and that abuse is never justified, no matter what the offense, whether intentional or not.
I needed Richard to recognize that by throwing me under the bus instead of explaining to Tracy what my e-mail was really all about, he had implicated himself and declared himself guilty–that by demonstrating to her my innocence, he also would’ve demonstrated his own.
Then we could’ve sat down and talked like adults.
But because they dug in their heels and justified what they did, and Tracy just kept spewing out more and more abuses at me, the friendship is over.
Even the Bible says to have nothing to do with the unrepentant user or abuser (1 Corinthians 5:9-13).
There is no way to restore a friendship without mutual forgiveness and apologies, and there cannot and will not be any sort of friendship between us until the abuse stops: the abuse of her husband, the abuse of her children, the abuse of me.
I will not be friends with people who justify abuse of their children.
I will not be friends with a woman who justifies abuse of her children and of her husband.
I will not be friends with people who justify bullying not just of children, but of grown adults, to get their way.
Like many abusers, this woman didn’t even mind it if the things she said made her sound like she had mental problems and I wound up thinking she was just nuts, as long as she could still delude herself into believing that she “won” the argument.
These strategies are referred to as “crazy-making” because they are used to make you think YOU’RE the crazy one.
But they usually have exactly the opposite effect as you start to think the abuser would have to be mentally ill to come up with the wacky, outlandish, completely ridiculous things she says, and to say them with all seriousness.
It is at this point that many victims and bystanders decide that they’re not running a mental institution for abusers, and it’s time to cut bait and to run for the hills.
Although she was attempting to get me to “see things her way”, absolve herself of any wrongdoing, and have me validate and agree with her, what this abuser actually did was to make herself look far worse.
Once the phony mask of righteousness dropped off, no preconceived notion that I may have held about her was anything close to as bad as she really was.
While trying to justify her point of view, she gave away many clues as to her true nature, inadvertently revealing an unloving heart controlled by envy, pride, resentment, bitterness, competitiveness, jealousy, and hostility–and all masquerading in the disguise of a “good Christian woman”. –Rev. Renee, The “Christian” Abuser: Twisting God’s Word to Justify Abuse
It’s so frustrating because they kept pointing to me and saying I needed to respond to Tracy trying to start a conversation with me. Tracy kept complaining to Richard that I wasn’t responding to her attempts.
But I never noticed her doing it; most of the time she said very little to me. I kept hearing she felt snubbed; I had no idea when. Even Jeff never noticed me being rude with her, never noticed her trying to start conversations with me.
It’s especially frustrating because I’ll look over websites on abuse that say, “Abusers will tell you they have no idea what you’re talking about, say the incident never happened.” But I’m not saying this to be abusive or gaslight anybody! I truly have no clue what Richard and Tracy are talking about.
So even if we had the “conference” Tracy was asking for, her yelling and screaming at me would have made no difference, because I still would have acted the same–not out of stubbornness, not out of rudeness, not out of a desire to snub her or be unfriendly, but because they treated my pleas as excuses and did absolutely nothing to help me know she was trying to start a conversation with me.
Perhaps I had no idea what to say next: This happens to me quite often when someone speaks to me. It’s not rudeness: I just have nothing to say.
Maybe I don’t know enough about the subject. I’ve heard of extroverts or neurotypicals “faking” knowing a subject for the sake of conversation, but I could never do such a thing. If I don’t know about it, I’m not going to fake it. I wouldn’t know how to do it even if I wanted to.
But I have no idea if this is it, because I don’t remember her doing anything most of the time that would seem remotely like starting a conversation.
[2014 note to demonstrate this: I had a similar problem at work once. I was a secretary for an insurance agent, but I was not licensed, so I was not allowed to give advice.
[However, one day my boss complained that I should be giving advice, even “fudging” answers to people who call, like he overheard from the secretaries for the other agents in the building. This made me extremely uncomfortable, so I didn’t do it.
[Not only was this illegal, as I later learned, but it was impossible for me to do this. Not only do I resist lying, which this would feel like, but it’s neurologically impossible for me to “fudge” answers I do not have.]
All Tracy’s badgering, all this hearing long after the fact that I’ve somehow annoyed her but having no idea when or where, all her punishing me for something I couldn’t notice or do anything about–It made me loathe her.
Richard complained, during our arguments in June 2010, that I told him about things I had trouble with long after they happened, so he couldn’t remember them.
This complaint baffled me. I told him my problems with him, right away. I only waited once, and only because I had to resolve within myself whether I was the one with the problem before bringing it up. I had to see if it happened more than once, while normally I would try to bring up a problem as soon as possible.
But Richard and Tracy constantly waited till long after the “offense.” Tracy kept quiet until July/August 2010, then came out with it–but I already heard it all from Richard and stopped what she hated a year or two previous, so I don’t know what the point was of rehashing it.
While Richard kept scolding me for some way I “snubbed” Tracy long after it happened, so I could remember none of it. It was very hypocritical of him, obvious projection of their problem onto me.
All I knew was that I had not snubbed her on purpose. Heck, I see websites on how to spot a liar that say a liar uses too many words, saying “honestly” or “truly,” etc. But I use many words here and other places to explain myself, not to be deceitful, but because I’m trying to make a person understand that I am telling the truth.
Many of the tips on spotting liars actually pinpoint behaviors that people with NLD and Asperger’s do naturally that have nothing to do with deceit, such as using a lot of words, not making eye contact, twitching, etc.
I can certainly tell you that I have always had a lot of trouble with eye contact. It’s taken a lot of time and work to get to the point of being able to look someone in the eye while they talk to me.
And still it feels far more comfortable to look away. It’s far less distracting from their words, if I don’t have to keep thinking, “Now look in the eyes, but not too long or they’ll think you’re staring. What is that on his face?”
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