- Family and Parenting
Escaping the Narcissitic Maze PART 2
My Journey to Freedom from Abuse
As I began my escape from my Narcissist I started to feel like I was stuck in a maze. Every step I took forward he seemed to be there one step ahead of me. The mind of the narcissist is unlike any other mind in the world. He truly believes that people are his property just like material objects. I don’t think that he believed or even now after the final divorce decree has been signed that I am free. I will always be “his” object. Our first night away from him our phones were cut off, the locks were changed, and security codes and passwords were changed. Of course all bank accounts were drained and credit cards were cancelled. He was determined to show me that he was in charge and I would not survive without him. After his father, my children’s grandfather realized what was happening he somehow convinced him to let me and the children live in the house while he stayed with his parents. This was a relief since I did not have any money to continue my motel stay. He also convinced him to return my car to me that he had dropped off at the dealership. So, I was back in my home with my kids and a vehicle to drive. Was I free of him? Absolutely not!
He agreed to come to the house for a couple of hours in order to collect his things. I stayed away and waited for him to get done. When I returned home I found that he had taken much more than his personal possessions. The family picture were gone as well as many of my own personal things. There were holes in the walls, things were destroyed, and things were missing. As the children and I arrived back home we were astonished and afraid of the mess we were walking into. It was as if he had left a message written on the walls letting us know that the escape was going to be pure hell.
That day and everyday since then the harassment and slander began. My narcissist began with my first-born son. The son that had endured the most abuse was his first target. He suddenly wanted to be father of the year. He begged to see and spend time with the kids. Once he was with my oldest son who is 17 he used his time with him to convince him that I his mother was an adulterer, a thief, and a liar. He brainwashed my son into believing that he was not abused. My son came home extremely angry at me believing that I had been unfaithful to his father. He then began a smear campaign to all of our friends and family. Through this I have learned that having spent all of my adult life with this person I had developed a severe case of abused wife syndrome. A person that has been stuck in that kind of abuse begins to believe what their abuser says about them. I started to question myself and my abilities. I felt like maybe I was a horrible person and soon everyone would find out. My life would be over. I actually have to make a conscious effort to remind myself that I am actually a loving and good person. It has been his mission throughout the marriage and throughout our divorce to make me believe that I am not good enough. After you hear these things for so long you truly start to believe the lies yourself. The emotional toll that his slander took on me and the kids became unbearable.
My next step in my escape was to get a job. This was proving to be a difficult task since just like in any abusive relationship you have been controlled for a period of time. I had worked and have great skills but the only job I had in the past 18 years was working for the ever powerful narcissist. I helped him start, build, and run his company. He would not admit it but I did an excellent job and worked very hard. Another product of years of abuse is trying to be a peacemaker. I use the phrase trying because there is no actual peace keeping when involved with a person with NPD. I worked extremely hard at being the best wife, employee, mother, etc…. I just wanted to keep him happy to avoid the violent outburst. This is something I was actually never really successful at. Eventually a person just gives up and goes into self-preservation mode. I did however manage to find a job that I really enjoy. I am learning everyday and I love it.
Keeping a job has been difficult. Not because I was the flighty, uneducated, lazy person that the narcissist claimed I was, but because he decided this would be a good time to break into the house. My babysitter and my kids would call me at work terrified because the door had been beaten down or because their things were missing. Yes the narcissist would steal from his own children! I had changed the locks but this did not stop him. He also chose to call my place of work excessively. My boss ended up filing a report and blocking him. The harassment and break ins continued to get worse daily. I had no choice but to obtain a lawyer and file for divorce. I also filed for a restraining order. Thankfully the judge heard my case. We were granted exclusive use of the home. He was not allowed to come to the home, he finally had to pay spousal and child support, and stop the harassment. It felt so good to be heard and have someone do something to help us. The divorce was set to be finalized within 6 months. I was finally on a straight path in my maze and I could see the exit! What I didn’t realize as I walked out of the courthouse that day was that the true NPD believes that he is above the law. There was a giant dead-end waiting around the corner of my maze that I could not see yet.
I’ll be back to post part three soon!