Mutual Friends with the Abusers: Repost from 2011

I wrote this post–https://nyssashobbithole.com/wordpress/fighting-the-darkness-mutual-friends/–in the midst of anger and grief over the abuse I received from a couple of narcissists.  It gets a fair amount of traffic.  Some quotes:

When you have been abused by a friend, or when you have discovered that your friend is a narcissist, or when you have discovered that your friend has a dangerous personality disorder such as narcissistic borderline, mutual friends may or may not believe you.

It’s hard for me to deal with this. I avoid poking around too much in the posts of mutual friends, for fear that I’ll see them reply to Richard or Tracy, because I get a sour feeling in the pit of my gut when I see that.

There is still too much grief; there is still too much disbelief that Richard is a narcissist, even though I see the proof in his mug shots, the lack of remorse, the contempt instead of shame.

There is still too much anger at the injustice of Tracy’s projection of guilt onto me, at her abuses of me, at her gaslighting and vicious, nasty behavior.

I’ve done all I can. I told Social Services what I witnessed and what Richard told me. I told my priest what happened, and though I did not tell him Richard’s identity, I believe he’s figured it out. I’ve tried to tell my friends the truth, whether mutual friends believe me or not, or even know who I mean. I suggested to my husband that he report the threat Richard sent to him back on June 28, 2010, but he doesn’t want to.

The rest has been done by their oldest daughter, who had the amazing courage to report her own step-father to the police, and by law enforcement and Social Services. I really should let myself rest with that, but I keep feeling like there’s something else I need to do. But what else would there be?

What if my abusers join my church??!!

Richard’s church and mine are both very small and in financial trouble; the archdiocese has suggested they merge.  The two churches don’t want to merge, since they’re in different counties, and somebody would have to move.  But the option is still on the table.

If the churches merge, I will have to go to the priest with my concerns, and show him the proof that Richard is a convicted child abuser, to establish my credibility and prove that he is violent.

Because Tracy has bullied and verbally abused me as well, I will have to also show him an article I found on a contract one church drew up with a member who had been charged with molestation, a contract which was meant to help the member find redemption, but also consider the needs and fears of the victims.  We could modify it for our own needs.

If Richard comes to my church again, my husband and I will have to address the elephant in the room (his unrepentant attitude for hurting me, and the conviction), and confront him with the child abuse case, tell him we know what he did and he can’t keep coming here, intimidating me and bringing up all my feelings of grief and anger all over again while I’m trying to worship God.

I hoped that Richard now realized, thanks to his conviction and nearly killing his daughter, that he needed help desperately. I hoped he was full of shame. I hoped he would finally come to Hubby and me, and try to make things right. I hoped that good side I thought was there, would finally get him to do the right thing, and this grief would end, I would get my friend back….

But then I saw the five mug shots taken a few weeks after he came to my church, and they were full of contempt. Hubby says Richard also looks like the cat who swallowed the canary, like he got away with something.

You will note that I stayed friends with Richard and Tracy even though I knew they were both being asses to Todd.  Of course, Richard told me enough things about Todd to make him sound like a horrible person in general, even though he’d been close friends with Todd for years, so I began to disregard the crap being slung at Todd over the game.

So maybe it’s not so surprising that Richard’s other friends are still with him, even though I’ve exposed the abuse.  If they’re still caught up in his web, they may not realize just how badly he’s acted, even with the evidence in their faces.  I still stayed with Richard even though I knew he almost assaulted that lady.

As one person on the Forum (where we all used to post) wrote to Todd about Richard after finding out about the court case, “He always was an a–hole, but you were his friend and didn’t notice.”  Several people on the Forum also said that Richard is a narcissist.

Even though, during the time he lived with us, he made me feel like we had bonded and had a very special friendship, that I was standing in for his beloved sister since she was so far away–now I felt like just one of many.

He was my BFF, the one I confided in about everything, the one I most wanted to see, but I felt like he wasn’t confiding in me about much of anything anymore, like he wanted to see all sorts of other people at least as much as he wanted to see me. I didn’t feel special to him anymore, like I had to fight for his attention, which probably fed into his narcissism even more.

…Mutual friends, face the truth, or you’ll be next. Richard and Tracy are both unstable people, and without me around, they need a new target. Face the truth, try to get them to face the truth, do something!

How can I fill that narc-shaped hole?

I feel like a shell of my former self.  Yet another sign that I’ve been targeted by narcissists.  That and the persistent feeling that I’m missing something, that Richard has to bring it back to me before I can be complete again.

No other friend matches this. It just seems impossible to replace him, even with his disagreeable violence and narcissism. These were elements of our friendship which I found especially valuable and important, especially appealing, and these were the reasons I was so attached to him.

Where else am I to find someone like this? I try to remind myself of all the violence, the narcissism, the betrayal, yet I’m left with this gaping hole that it’s impossible to fill with anyone else.

And that, more than anything, is why I just have not been able to get over our friendship. That’s why I still haven’t let go of the hope that one day, somehow, some way, he will repent and come back to us.

But that saintly version of the narc is not real

Except that this perfect friend, the image I had of this person, which was molded over the two years of online/phone friendship and the two months he alone stayed with us, diverges so much from the way he acted, and the things which came out about him, and the way he treated me, over the two years after that, that I wonder how much of this image was real, and how much was a carefully crafted persona used to attract me.

For more, read entire post here: Fighting the Darkness: Mutual Friends with the Abusers

 

 

This “winning” over narcissists is not really winning

Several years ago, I feared the merger of my church with my narcissistic abusers’ church.  At the time, it seemed like it wasn’t going to happen.

Meanwhile, my abusers found my blog and decided to threaten me and start stalking me at church.  However, their threats soon fell away and turned to nothing, until the only “stalking” they do now is to read my blog once in a while.

As for the merger, it did finally happen last year.  I was afraid they would start coming to my church all the time.  Thankfully, however, they did not.  I have not seen them at my church in several years, even though I occasionally see them in the church website stats.  Their church had no services for a few years, so I guess they go wherever they’ve been going for the past several years, if anywhere at all.  When I do see them in the church stats, it’s usually around a major holiday such as Christmas or Easter.  If they’ve been to my church, it’s been on a day I wasn’t there.

But this time around, I saw no sign of them at all in the stats even around Easter.  I guess they’ve moved on.  The threat is long over.  Yes, it’s a huge relief, and yes, I am glad about that.

But I have to be careful.  I must not gloat or feel like I’ve “won.”  Nobody has “won” here.  The best outcome of this whole situation would’ve been repentance and reconciliation.

People say narcissists don’t repent and it’s better not to reconcile with them.  Still, my faith–and, apparently, current research–say that narcissists can sometimes choose to repent and work on eradicating their narcissism.  The victim of a narcissist needs to be careful, though, because oftentimes an apparent repentance is actually a ruse to manipulate the victim.  I’ve been through that in the past, too, with an abusive ex.  Though years later, he did finally regret what he did.

But I’ve also experienced, again and again, past bullies or abusers apologizing to me.  Maybe I find them on Facebook or at a class reunion, and they are nothing now like the mean person I remember.  Time and growing up led to their apologies, which I did not seek out.

So a part of me can continue to hope that one day Richard and Tracy will repent and try to make things right, though it’s just in back of my mind now, not something I’m “waiting” for.  And while yes, it is a relief to not deal with them except as information in my blog stats, I still need to look at the situation with sadness that it was not resolved in a proper, Christian manner.  And also sadness that a friendship I poured so much of myself into, that meant so much to me–meant nothing at all to him.

There is no “winning” here.  The ultimate goal is salvation for all parties, not beating a narc.