freedom is the sweetest fruit

Month: October, 2013

sex and the Narc *warning: contains graphic sexual language

I’m curious.

hahaha! Yeaaaah.

No, but seriously. I really am curious. I am curious if there is one more arena in which my spouse has been fucking with my head. I wonder if some of my attitudes toward sex have formed under…false circumstances. Since my anonymity allows me to explore freely, I’ll indulge myself for a moment.

I seem to be in the minority in dealing with a female Narcissist. I’ve read some remarks that lead me to believe that male Narcissists can be stingy in the bedroom. (I’ve also read some remarks that lead me to believe they can be demanding in the bedroom.)

I’m curious if male Narcissists extend their manipulative tactics into the bedroom. Of course, I’m more curious if female narcissists do, but there’s a much smaller sample to draw from.

The reason that I ask is because I’ve always found sex with my narcissistic spouse to be confusing. That has led me to conclude that sex in general is rather confusing and, despite the obvious pleasures and rewards that will always make the pursuit of it worthwhile, ultimately unsatisfying.

Don’t get me wrong. I love sex. It’s just that I’ve found sex with my narcissistic partner to be…frustrating. Her signals seem to be ever-shifting: “Couldn’t you tell I was close?” “Couldn’t you tell I came a long time ago?” ‘Haven’t you learned to read my signals by now?” Something always seems to go wrong during sex. I never know just what, but I’ve learned to anticipate something. Sure, orgasms are had. But I come too quickly, or I take too long to come, her hand is tired, her mouth is tired (my hands and mouth always finish the job), or my orgasm is pinched off by extreme squeezing applied at just the right time. Or she gets a cramp, or she wants a difficult angle, or (fill in the blank). Now that I know she’s a narcissist, this makes perfect sense: she could very well be frustrating me on purpose. Or not. Or perhaps these things are all part of the natural ebb and flow of sex, but she magnifies and exaggerates the small hitches and hiccups.

It’s also weird because she seems (and purports) to have great orgasms, but then we hardly ever do it.

Then there’s oral sex. She seemed to love oral sex in the early part of our relationship, but she used lots and LOTS of teeth. She said her other boyfriends had enjoyed it. Why didn’t I? So I learned to both crave oral sex and hate it when I got it. So she stopped doing it because I made her feel self-conscious. Because I asked her to stop biting me. (I lost a lot of feeling in my penis for about a year after one such ‘love bite.’ Thank god, I finally recovered.)

A few years ago, she told me that she’d never had any experience before me, and had only claimed to have prior experience because she didn’t want to seem like a dork. I was her first and I’d ruined it all by having an affair.

*Total digression: She also told me her ex-fiance made a play for her, asking her to leave me, but that she said no. I recently discovered (I’m not particularly nosy or controlling, so I never checked before) that she’s facebook friends with this guy. This guy who allegedly tried to steal her from me.

I don’t really expect any response to this post. I realize sex is a private and sacred thing and not everyone is here anonymously. I just figured sex is one more area in which the Narcissist affects us, so…I’ll probably just google it.

More on affairs

Forget right or wrong. Affairs are dangerous for people in abusive relationships.

There is, of course, the obvious reason an affair is dangerous: your spouse may find out and do you grievous bodily, mental, or financial harm.

Then there are less obvious reasons.

Though it might be hard to imagine, there is a good possibility that your affair may end unpleasantly. If your lover breaks your heart, you can be sure your Narcissistic S.O. will be there to pick up the pieces. After having your heart torn out and thrown against the wall, you might feel lucky to still have someone who ‘really loves you,’ so much in fact that they are willing to take you back ‘after what you’ve done.’

Even if you are the one to leave the affair, there is a good possibility that you will feel guilty (even if you did not set out to have an affair, but fell for someone unawares) and this guilt may obscure the abuse that caused you to want to get out of the relationship in the first place.

So the worst part about an affair is the lack of focus. You may lose sight of why your relationship is really ending. Your Narcissistic S.O. will help you forget, if he or she can. It’s what they do best.




a little light, a little dark

The dark: My 62-year-old mother underwent medical tests last week that turned up cancerous cells. She will have a hysterectomy. The prognosis is good, but I’m just not ready for this. I figured it we had another ten or fifteen years before having to worry about this sort of stuff. I realize it can happen at any age and worrying isn’t a useful reaction, but still. She’s had her own marital problems and in many ways is still waiting for her life to start. I want her to have many, many good years left. I worry that my decision to leave will add stress to her life at a time when she needs to be resting.

The light: After reading all (well, probably not all, but a lot) of the advice on leaving a Narcissist, I absorbed that I should be widening my circle of contacts and friends, especially in my area. There’s a guy at the grocery store (I don’t know the politically correct term for a bag boy, which does sound a bit demeaning to my ear) who’s always been extra nice and outgoing towards me, so I thought I would be proactive and ask him if he wanted to go for a beer sometime. To that end, after shopping, I spotted him in the parking lot and waved him over. When I asked him if I could get his number, his smile fell into a suspicious glare. It was very dramatic. “What for?” he asked. I didn’t really get it at first, but then it dawned on me: he thought I was hitting on him. As a confident heterosexual, this stuff just doesn’t occur to me. Not that there would be anything wrong with that, but having never been in any remotely similar situation before, I was completely nonplussed. I ended up telling him that I don’t have many friends in the area and that I’m going through some personal stuff. (I even used the A word (“my wife is a little bit, uh…abusive”) for the first time, a detail I have ambivalent feelings about.) He was really nice in the end and took my number instead because apparently they get a lot of freaky types at the grocery store and “you can’t be too careful.”

I’m never shopping there again.


social anxiety

It’s interesting what you can suddenly remember.

I remember about 12-13 years ago, I told my wife I felt like I had all but conquered the social anxieties that had once held me back. I asked if she agreed that it was amazing how far I’d come.

Here was a chance for her to affirm and support me. What do you think she said?

“Uh, you’ve still got a long way to go. People have told me that there’s something about you that makes them feel really uncomfortable. I’m just telling you for your own good”

I’ve lived with this as a truth for the last 12-13 years, that I am awkward and make people feel uncomfortable. Now, there may be some truth to it. I lived a pretty isolated life for most of my adolescence and can sometimes be very nervous around people. But it is interesting how my perception of myself once again ties back to her.


the prisoner’s manifesto

I tried to talk to a friend about this the other day. I found myself stumbling over the words. It’s hard to know how to convey everything, I mean, like, everything, in a casual phone call.

I wanted to tell him everything because I want someone to know. I’m really not sure how great my odds are of surviving this, to be honest. If I don’t, I want people to know what happened.

How do you tell someone you’ve been a prisoner of terror for the past fifteen years? How do you tell them you didn’t realize it?

It sounds ridiculous, that you’ve suddenly ‘realized’ you are the victim of abuse. “Yeah. She’s kept me a slave through employment of psychological terrorism for the last fifteen years. I just never let on.” It sounds like a fiction, a trumped up charge to serve perhaps as the coup de grace in a custody or divorce proceeding.

How can you tell explain to them what it’s like to undergo brainwashing 24/7, year after year? How you stop knowing things you know, how you forget simply because there is no way to escape and no way to live with the truth?

And what about her friends? How will they ever believe that the person they love has been the willful perpetrator of slavery? They never even liked you that much to begin with.

It’s time to forget about her friends. It might even be time to forget about your friends. The first priority right now is survival. The longer you stay alive, the more likely you are to remain that way. A determined psycho has promised you a slow and painful death. What are you going to do about it?

the wrong song

She yelled at me for my song choice tonight. We weren’t really in the same room, but were each walking from different parts of the house when we passed each other. She went to the kitchen while I went to the family room, still within ear shot. I started a song and she said, “As if I’m not in enough pain already and you have to play that!” She didn’t offer an explanation other than to say it was ‘too peppy.’ I let it go.

I don’t ever plan to alter the songs I’ve written. It doesn’t really seem to matter, as even generic lyrics can make her insanely jealous. How can I reach for my dreams when she is like this? I have enough anxiety about performing already. I don’t need all of this other shit. Worrying about her reaction leaves me feeling anxious and timid.

Screaming at daughter again

Our daughter is attending a birthday party today. Daughter and spouse decided to make card. Came into room to find daughter in tears, spouse screaming at her for ‘putting to many hearts’ (four) on card of girl who “isn’t nice to her.’

God help us.

random notes

8:30 am: viciously yelled at for telling her story about slime in iced tea she said she wanted to hear. When confronted about saying yes to hearing it, she finally said, “I’m not mad, I’m just late.” = triangulation

need to write about getting tag-teamed by Narcs. Her mother’s constant visits that reinforced my conditioning.

Threatens to move in with mother and brother (brother violent sociopath drug user, who beats his mother) if our marriage ever ends.

My great aunt, uncle, and father possibly Narcs. So, family history.

criticizing the Narcissist

She managed to yell at my daughter before school today. She was brushing my daughter’s teeth (yeah, she does that; she is permissive and doesn’t follow through on anything with the kids, unless she does it for my benefit; it’s as if she doesn’t really care and her parenting is only for show) and my daughter said ‘Ow!’ Big mistake. Rule number one around here is never, ever criticize mommy, expressly or implicitly, for any reason. Not unless you want to get your head handed to you. It quickly became my daughter’s fault for “always standing too far away! You’re the one hurting me!!!

When she left each of her last two jobs, I had strong suspicions that the main factor in her leaving was her boss’s criticism. Still, there was nothing I could do. It all happened at work, so I had to take her word for it. As she became more and more unhappy, I told her to follow her heart, that I would never ask her to be miserable.

I’m not optimistic about her long-term career prognosis. This behavior is going to catch up with her someday.

The last straw

*I changed the title of this post from its original, “The breakthrough.” Though the following events created a personal crisis, they did not provide the final impetus for me  to ‘wake up’ to my abuse. (That happened a few weeks ago.)

** This post is very long and not particularly well written. I just wanted to purge it from my system, once and for all. I am continuing to tweak it for accuracy. I welcome comments, but it’s mostly for me.


Backstory: I suffer from anxiety. I also have a fear of heights. My spouse is well aware of this. Several years ago, I trusted her to drive us down into a steep canyon. I did alright during the descent, as the lane was set on the cliff-side of the road, but I could tell I would have trouble on the way back up in the other lane, which was on the edge of a steep drop-off and had no guardrail. I got more and more worked up thinking about the trip back up to the top until I finally took a painkiller to take the edge off. (I am not a drug user, but she had the pills with her, so it seemed worth trying.) On the way back up, she decided to ‘mess with me,’ becoming jovial and boisterous, taking her hands off the wheel over and over, and pretending as if she was going to lose control of the vehicle. I went from very tense to full on panic attack. When we got to the top, I told her she had betrayed my trust and that I wasn’t sure if I would ever be able to trust her again. She laughed it off and said I was being ridiculous, that she’d just been trying to help me relax and get over my fear. After we got to the top, she ignored my request to drive away and parked me where i had a nice view of the canyon while she got out to take pictures. I decided that I was in fact being ridiculous and that everything had been my fault.  I left the canyon full of shame and self-loathing for allowing my anxiety get the better of me.

The event: A couple of months ago, we made a cross-country trip. Several weeks before the trip, I decided on my own that I did not want to hold the family back and would brave a scenic skirt through the mountains for the sake of the kids and my desire to conquer my fears. She mentioned that she really wanted to go up to the peak of one of the more well-known mountains. I told her that would be alright but that I might want to wait near the bottom while she made the quick drive up.

We entered the mountains at night, driving from an hour before sunset until an hour after dark. We had no itinerary, so that night at our hotel, she decided we would drive to and up the mountain the next day. The following day, we ventured further into the mountains. I did well, only tensing up slightly through the scenic high country.

Things went well until my son, who has a severe mental disability, began to indicate that he needed to use the restroom. However, there weren’t any stopping places. He’s very picky about where he will go, so we finally decided he could use the restroom at the mountain’s visitor center. In the meanwhile, he got quite worked up and became very demonstrative of his unhappiness both vocally and physically. The noise and added commotion wore on my nerves as we continued on the high-altitude roads.

I had considered simply staying with the family as we went up the mountain, but my calm completely eroded by the time we arrived. Spouse began ascending the mountain without giving me the opportunity to vacate. I tried positive thinking: this isn’t so bad. It worked, at least until we reached the part of the mountain where I could look up and see the winding road that circled around the peak. I started to panic and told her it would be best if I could get out and wait for her to come back down. I was willing to wait on the side of the road. It turned out the visitor center was just past the park entrance, so I insisted I be dropped off there.

We decided it would be easier and safer if I took our son (who is fifteen, has no natural respect for heights, and is very hard to control in public places) to use the bathroom at the visitor center and then wait with him there for the girls to get back from the peak. By the time she let us out, I felt psychologically crushed by my failure to stay with the family on the trip up the mountain. My son showed no interest in continuing up, but I felt terrible anyway. I apologized to my spouse profusely, choking back tears of shame. Still, I thought to myself, you’ve done better than you have in the past and you’re determined to beat this. It’s time to get over the fears holding you back. This incident is the final proof you can’t go on this way.

I had no idea how much worse things were about to get.

Spouse and daughter decided to get out at the visitor center, too.

(It should be noted: I have chronic pain and tendonitis in my hands, wrists, and shoulders. I wear various braces depending on the situation and had my light braces with me to help control my son. He is very stubborn about moving, hates to walk, loves to bolt and run away, and is a master of passive resistance, twisting and contorting himself onto the ground where, once situated, he is nearly impossible to move.)

My spouse decided to take photos of our six-year-old in the butterfly garden at the visitor center. Photos are an old point of contention between the two of them. My daughter likes to make faces and Spouse likes to get worked up about it, to the point of getting nasty and yelling. It rarely works out and Spouse gets really angry. My daughter got up to old tricks in the butterfly garden and Spouse started to storm back to the car. I didn’t know if she meant to leave me with both kids, but my son was already giving me more than I could handle, refusing to walk, then pulling away, and was in the process of tugging me back up the trail to the other side of the visitor center away from the direction of the car. I was still in the midst of a full-on panic attack from being on top of a mountain and my wrists were killing me from the struggle with my son. So, now Spouse was going to leave me to contend with both kids without so much as a word?

I decided that wasn’t going to happen. I told my daughter to go with her mother as planned. I could still see her ahead on the trail to the parking lot, so I told my daughter to run fast and call loudly to make sure her mother knew she was there. My son, meanwhile, was headed off in the other direction and I had to make a split-second decision. Deciding there was no way Spouse would actually leave our daughter alone on the top of a mountain if she knew she was there (but the thought did enter my head; why else would I have decided she would never do that?), I turned my back on my son to watch my daughter, yelling ‘Mommy! Mommy’ as she went, until she was within a few feet of her mother. Once I was certain they were together, I turned and ran for my son, who was nearly out of sight by then. I recovered him a few feet around the bend of the trail, headed up towards the visitor center. I was really upset with Spouse for the whole situation, but at least things were back on track.

Son had not yet used the restroom so I decided that was first priority. We made our grueling way (my wrists were killing me, as he flopped to the ground over and over, only for me to pull him up again) to the visitor center. My son flirted with using the bathroom for ten minutes, didn’t manage to go, then we came back out to wait. Just then a frantic woman came into the center and said, “Sir, excuse me! Do you have a little girl with blonde hair? She’s alone back there on the trail, crying and calling for help! You had better go check it out!”

Holy shit. No way! She had abandoned our six-year-old daughter on the mountain? I couldn’t believe it. I didnt believe it. I figured there had to be some mistake, that it couldn’t possibly be true. Then again, the first thing I muttered (under my breath) was ‘that bitch.’ I started dragging my son (who was tired of walking and had become an immovable force by this time, constantly letting his legs go out from under him) back down the trail. I called for my daughter with what little air I could drag as I completely and totally freaked out. People passed me and asked questions, trying to help, but I could barely respond. I guess my throat was closing off from the stress. I rasped out what I could, pushing and pulling my son, trying to hurry, moving like a turtle in molasses, trying to call my spouse  on the phone to see if the woman at the center had been mistaken, as I strongly suspected. (There was no reception on top of the mountain.)  I finally made it back to the parking lot. The car was gone. There were no sign of my daughter. No one there had seen her. I turned back up the trail, repeating the process of calling and dragging all the way back to the visitor center. I thought of calling a park ranger, but then I was afraid we might lose the kids (I’m not sure why I thought that, it was an unreasonable thought at the time, but I was completely panicked and that’s what I thought), and I was 99 percent certain she was with my spouse. She just couldn’t have turned her back on our daughter, especially over a couple of photos. Could she? There’s a 1 percent chances she’s lost, and we might lose the kids if I contact the authorities. I didn’t know what to do, so i just kept trying to get calls through. In hindsight, I should’ve told someone. I just wasn’t in my right mind.

Finally, I demanded that the universe let my call go through. It did. Just long enough for me to ask “is ******* with you?” and to get the reply, “Yes, of course, where else would she be?” Then the line went dead. Then all of that panic and shock caught up with me physically and I sank through the floor.

I realized at that point exactly how much my life sucks.

When they came back down, I had no fight in me. I had no proof that she’d done anything wrong or even tried to scare me. I was also terrified of pissing her off before the drive back down by pressing the issue. Once we made our way down, it took us another three hours to leave the mountains. By that time, I had convinced myself that the entire incident was my fault, all due to my phobia and anxiety. I felt ashamed for being so suspicious and hateful. How could I entertain those thoughts about the woman who loves me? I sank into a deep depression that lasted for the rest of the trip and several weeks afterward. I was completely devastated. Still, I didn’t really entertain the thought that she might be orchestrating events to manipulate me. I needed to stop that kind of sick thinking.

So, what do you think? Damning evidence, one more wishy-washy adventure in Narc-abuse land, or am I simply a hateful and suspicious husband?

*When I finally admitted to myself I might be a victim of abuse, I asked my daughter about what happened on the mountain. She got really quiet and her head sank. I told her there were no right or wrong answers, she wasn’t in trouble no matter what; I just wanted the truth.

She said when she approached her, her mother said ‘go back to Daddy’ and kept walking. When my daughter came back to her panting that I was gone, only then did she relent and allow my daughter to come with her. (Hmm, that’s weird. I keep saying my daughter instead of ‘our.’ Wonder what that means.)

On its own, it’s a nothing event, a simple misunderstanding interpreted in a damning light by a husband subconsciously looking for an excuse to leave. Taken in the context of the rest of our marriage, it comes off with a darker tone.