“You think your pain and your heartbreak are unprecedented in the history of the world, but then you read. It was books that taught me that the things that tormented me most were the very things that connected me with all the people who were alive, or who had ever been alive.”
― James Baldwin
To The Invisible Daughter,
First I would like to apologise to you for not approving your comments on my blog. I will understand if you choose to see me as yet another person along the path of your life who makes you feel invisible.
I have experienced being invisible myself. Many children of narcissists have experienced this. It is a pain which keeps on giving, what we make of what it gives doesn’t always seem like it is up to us, but it is.
That is why I have chosen to share your comments in a post to give voice to your story. I hope you don’t mind if I do things this way.
If you’re wondering why I have decided not to approve your comments, it is mainly because most of your comments were directed at others who have commented on my blog, others who have shared their own stories, their painful experiences of relationships with narcissists, who are still working through their own pain, for whom it may have taken a lot of courage to comment on this blog knowing that their words would be made public and open them to the opinions of others, and I felt that perhaps your replies to them were a bit too intense and could trigger their own pain.
I know others can look after themselves. However on a blog, the blogger shares a certain responsibility of care-taking towards those who comment on the blog, and although I don’t have any official guidelines for commenting, I do rely on those who comment to be considerate of others, compassionate towards them and empathetic about how their words may affect them.
When we are in pain, when our wound is deep and raw, we sometimes hurt others without realising what we are doing. We can at times do to others what was done to us, even though that is the last thing we would want to do. In lashing out at those who hurt us, we may hurt those who are there for us, and our hurt becomes a double-edged sword.
“Some old wounds never truly heal, and bleed again at the slightest word.”
― George R.R. Martin
Sometimes those to whom we tell our story get lost as we get caught up in telling of our pain, our misery, our fury, our frustration and desperation. In expressing ourselves we sometimes forget those to whom we are expressing ourselves. We forget that they are people like us, who know and feel what it is to suffer truly, madly and deeply. In our need to be heard, we stop listening. In our need to be seen, we stop seeing. We may not see how our words make others bleed, just as we bleed at the words of others and others don’t always notice that their words have made us bleed.
“The marks humans leave are too often scars.”
― John Green
Here are your words, your story… in chronological order of your comments, with links to the posts on which you commented. I have removed the names of the people to whom you were replying as I feel this was not about them and their story, but about you and your story.
Yeeeeessss…? But should you engage with, “honor,” while allowing yourself to be dishonoured by your parents? I have no problem honoring them. It’s they who will NOT honor me. If it were simply apathy or neutral shallow behavior (Fr. Knows Best, Leave it To Beaver stuff) that would be fine. But I am the victim of active dishonor, disrespect, lies, slander, unfair criticism, abandonment (no Xmas for me! My father told me it “would not be suitable” for me to join them for Xmas 2014…why? He didn’t say), put downs, invalidation, non-support, no compassion, no empathy, no affection or protection (when I shared photos of the aftermath of the assault and attack of my narcissistic male “friend”–whom I’d known for 30 yrs–confiding in my Daddy Dearest–he callously suggested, “Looks like you may have gotten your injuries from falling down. What did you do to make that man do that to you?” OH MY LORD!
I think it wouldn’t hurt to add the commandment “Honor, Love and Protect thy children” (to the parent’s greatest ability of course–no one’s perfect–but can you make an effort?.
@ commenter – I BELIEVE YOU!
Also perhaps you may want to define the term, “love.” Ask your BF what is his definition. Share yours. Hopefully come to some connection and interesting dialogue. the word “love” is so often thrown around without any real understanding of and commitment to the same. Love is not just a 4 letter word. And it’s not sex. (Although when one is engaged with a sexual partner only love can take the physical act to a sublime place) (see Tantric Sex). But there is the deeper love for humanity and for the Earth and the Heavens and for our Higher Selves..Great Spirit (whatever you choose to call it)….
“what if the temptation to kill yourself is not yours? What if it is his?” Here’s another “what if?” What if you confided in your Narc Hubby of 18 years your personal wishes re: your funeral: “Pink Floyd’s Dark Side of the Moon, 3 poems (Keats, Yeats and your own composition) a gathering of all your friends, family and anyone else who wants to be there–with food, drink, stories, laughter, love–a celebration of life.” And your hubby takes that confidence, and one evening in the middle of a phone conversation (not a fight–just a conversation–a further sharing of yourself) and your hubby gaily bursts out, “Hey, Invisible Daughter, do me a favor: twhy don’t you get your Pink Floyd CD, take it downstairs to the the garage, close the door, get into the car, turn on the engine, lay back and put us all out of your misery. What use are you here?”
“Nice one Centurion” (from Monty Python’s Life of Brian)–NOT!!! I confess that verbal abuse stunned me…
Hey! You are one of the fortunate ones. Not to be a hater is a strength and a blessing. Apologies in advance for my short story long below–feel free to skip over it (or use it as insomnia remedy)
I, too, do not hate my Narc Papa nor Narc British hubby of 18 years (who so vividly suggested my suicide above). What good will “hating” do us? However, that does not mean our “love” requires us to allow ourselves to be abused in future–not by families, friends nor anyone! Even if they ARE our parents (but be prepared to have the stone tablet commandments thrown at you “Honor yo mama and yo papa.”) –Please excuse my crazy Celtic sense of humor but when I lose that, I dive down, down, down “the dark ladder” into my own private Hell–and we don’t want that, do we?) In order to “honor” anyone we must first “honor” ourselves..
BTW please don’t get me wrong–I’m 58 and still learning this lesson. I’ve been struggling to let go of my Narc papa (my Mama died when I was 8) and his 3 “flying monkeys” (my 3 baby brothers) for 18 years–But I suddenly I was blessed with an Epiphany today–a gift from above!
You see, my family abandoned me 18 years ago after I’d been invited and accepted my monkey bros invitation to join them at his home in Idaho. I was excited and planning my Christmas cheer when suddenly I received 5 nasty emails (from Papa Narc, 3 flying brother monkeys, and their monkey wives) informing me that “no one wanted me to join them for Xmas” (then my brother’s Monkey wife considerately listed all my family’s individual names) “because no one–not one of them–believed they’d enjoy themselves if I were there.” Merry Christmas to you too my Monkey Narc so-called family!
I don’t know why they thought they wouldn’t have fun if I attended–I’m quite interesting and certainly more entertaining than any of them–I’m more fun than a barrel of monkeys! But behind my back, they’d banded together, convened a secret kangaroo court and I was charged, tried, condemned and sentenced to solitary confinement–without even being allowed to defend myself nor know my crimes! I was devastated! I still don’t really know what happened. It may have had to do with my attempt to assert myself, setting some personal boundaries with NarcPapa. All I’d requested was to be treated like the rest of the family in the future. I did not dwell on past transgressions. Nor did I attack NarcPapa or demand any apologies. My requests were as follows: to be respected, loved, validated, cherished, supported–included. Nothing more. I naively assumed there would be no problem with this.
WRONG! NarcPapa enlisted his monkey side kicks–sending 2 of my brothers (separately) to demand my unconditional surrender and return to my dark scapegoat cellar (like Cinderella in the ashes). I was peeved that what I’d assumed to be a private matter between me and NarcPapa had been discussed with my brothers–before NarcPapa had discussed it with me! I tried to reassure my monkey bros it was no big deal–they need not be involved. My requests were reasonable and constructive–to be respected, loved, validated, cherished, supported, etc. No reason we should not settle this amicably and live happily ever after, right?
WRONG! I was shocked to see my assertive attempts suddenly metamorphose–growing and writhing out of control–like some snaky monster from a 50’s horror movie. My motives and goals were questioned and misunderstood–without even discussing my requests. Next thing I knew I got those 5 nasty emails and I was sent to Siberia–life in prison without possibility of parole. No appeals. Phones were disconnected. Email addresses terminated. Letters unanswered. Gifts returned unopened. For 18 years I’ve been on emotional, psychological roller-coaster, trying to make things “right” (desperately attempting to contact them through emails, letters, poems, flowers, painting their portraits with watercolors, phone calls, gifts, etc. You name it–I tried it–to no avail.
Today I had a sudden revelation–I found it online on another Narc blog. There I read an article which said I was looking for love in all the wrong places. Doomed to fail because my Narc Daddy has a personality disorder which means he’s not capable–nor willing–to give me the healthy paternal love I crave. Time to let him go. Oh no! How could I give up my Prodigal Daughter dream returning in triumph to the arms of my loving family!
Suddenly I saw the gift NarcPapa had already inadvertently given me! I did not have to cut him off! He’d already cut me off 18 years ago! (with occasional abusive emails/texts just to make sure I wasn’t completely free). Oh yea! That’s right! Silly me! put down my Cross and felt a sigh of relief. No more silent Crucifixion condemned to my private Purgatory. I’m free! Forward!
Bless you NarcPapa and your monkey boys and wives! I’m letting you all go with love; I’m leaning towards the light. Born again tonight!
My Narc Male “Frienemy” cajoled me into saying the “L” word during intimate encounters. He said he was emotionally unavailable and so unable to love but he admired my ability to love. He claimed my telling him I loved him during intimacy would be beneficial to our trysts. (ugh!) At first, II objected. Not fair to me since it might leave me more vulnerable than he. Too dangerous and not very smart to put my heart in jeaopardy.
“Don’t worry, baby,” he purred. “I will take care of your heart. It’s a big responsibility but I’m strong and special and I will make sure you don’t get hurt. Just go with the flow…cmon baby…it’s ok..it’s ok, etc” He seemed so wise and certain. And after all, I’d asked him about it directly and honestly. But once he’d hooked my heart–and I reminded him of his agreement to take care of my heart—-he conveniently developed amnesiia.
“I don’t know why I’d say that,” no purring now. “That doesn’t sound right. That’s an impossible task” I’m paraphrasing. Soon, I had no heart and no soul and whatever was left he drained dry without remorse or conscience. In fact, my love and emotional ability meant I deserved his abuse. Weak prey put here for his needs. Used me up. Spit me out. And then told everyone was a crazy stupid bitch– a useless moron–draining him.
I never wanted marriage or eternity. I knew he was too nuts for anything serious. Besides I’d just gotten out of an 18 year abusive marriage with another Narc (but he couldn’t hold a candle to my Prince of Darkness) We’d been friends for 30 years so when he suggested adding benefits–that suited me just fine. I had my own life and interests–I didn’t even want to live with him. But it turned out HE was the one who could NOT do friendship with benefits. He was not my friend. And he soon cut off any so-called benefits. He got all paranoid and weird saying I was getting too serious over him. Bullshit! He’d throw tantrums. Impossible to have any rational discourse on any topic whatsover. If I accidently brushed against him, he’d freak–then pout and give me the silent treatment (if I was lucky) for days. But his super intelligence did not help him to resolve conflicts rationally. I believe this was because he did not want to solve anything. Just destroy and abandon–leaving a path of lies and destruction in his wake. Evil!
You are not invisible, The Invisible Daughter… perhaps it is time you realised that and saw yourself. For those of us who have experienced what it is like to be an invisible child, and to later be an invisible adult, seeing ourselves is a very powerful act of healing.
Seeing others is also a powerfully healing act.
We can all feel unseen, hidden behind clouds, eclipsed… how wonderful it is to be noticed by a ray of light, to feel the warmth of the Sun, and to have that and share it rather than eclipse others to get the spotlight. The best kind of light is the one which comes from within, with compassion, caring and gentle warmth.
Take care of yourself.
Thank you for sharing!