Have a Happy New Year everyone!
These days I quite like this time of year. I don’t do very much, just chill at home doing sweet FA.
When I was younger, and forced to spend X-mas and New Year with my parents, or later on just with my mother because the royal We was not speaking to my father (something for which he was rather thankful)… this time of year was all about narcissist drama, Drama, DRAMA!
If you have or had a narcissist in your life then you most likely know exactly what I mean. This time of year it’s as though the narcissists get super-charged. They get super-stressed and act out their super-stress all over the place, jizzing over everyone within their radius (and that’s often more people than usual because they’ve emotionally blackmailed people into joining them in their misery).
Luckily I don’t recall too many of the New Year’s past spent with one or both of my narcissist parents. Perhaps because it was the same old shitstorm repackaged and gifted again and again and again.
I do have a vague blurry memory of one New Year’s Eve spent alone with my mother. I convinced her to go out to a restaurant which had organised a party for its diners.
I do know why I did those kind of things, but sometimes I would pretend I didn’t know why and then ask myself: Why are you doing this kind of thing!? You know it’s going to be hell. You can’t stop it from being hell!
I just thought it would be less hell if other people were around, but I was lying to myself. And it was actually more hell because my mother would see all those people around us having fun and this would darken her mood even more than it already was (which was miserably dark due to all her dreams of a perfect life having shattered into tiny painful shards and X-mas and New Year’s made those fragmented parts even more cutting).
I think in some twisted way I was testing her, confronting her with her own lies (what a stupid thing to do if that was what I was doing).
One of the things my mother always yadda-yadda-ed on about was how social she was, how much she loved parties, people, and how she was the life and soul of the party.
there is always a but…
I never actually saw her walk her talk.
At every party or social gathering we went to she would not socialise, she would not talk to people, she was definitely not the life and soul of the party. She would sit or stand stiffly in a corner looking disapproving and uncomfortable, and I’d be stuck there with her being her ‘chaperone’ and ‘companion’, listening to her bitch about what a terrible party it was, how the host was doing an awful job, how the drinks and food were cheap and dreadful, how she knew no one there and had no intention of getting to know these not good enough for her strangers, how she wished she hadn’t accepted the invite but she felt she had to (get out once in a while because poor her she was a social butterfly who never got to fly and it was all everyone else’s fault).
She was always mentioning these friends she had, but… I don’t think I ever saw any of these friends. Okay one or two would turn up out of the blue once in a blue moon, and I’d want to pinch them because… but then they’d be gone again.
My mother is a narcissist, my mother is one of the loneliest people I’ve ever known.
I used to feel sorry for her, feel the need to help her, save her somehow (I used to think I was saving her from my father, then from me, but actually it was herself she needed saving from)… but it was a pointless feeling. Unless it’s point was to keep me trapped in her self-made hell of drama, Drama, DRAMA with her.
The problem with narcissists like my mother is that their happiness is a dream so big and ideal, so reliant on things being just so perfect, exactly like they imagine they could be if only everything was a certain way and everyone was who they had to be, that they can never be happy until all their ransom demands are met. And ultimately even when the demands get met, they seem to prefer to be a hostage to their misery. Their misery is in some ways their real happiness and happy place.
One of the things I learned from my mother, from living and dealing with her and her moods, her drama, Drama, DRAMA, her misery, was… that it is indeed a choice.
It’s up to us individually to decide, choose, whether we’re going to enjoy something or be miserable about it. Or how to handle those times when we’re genuinely sad, or genuinely happy.
My mother could take a tiny moment of mad, bad, or sad, and stretch it out so that it would last for weeks, months, years. If it began to fade, decay, try to go its natural way, she’d inject it with some formaldehyde and stretch it out some more. And she could ruin a moment of good, happy, fun, in two seconds, usually by deciding that it just wasn’t as good, happy or fun as it could, should be. It’s remarkably easy to kill joy.
My mother couldn’t see it as being a choice, at least not her choice… she was always blaming others for making bad choices for her and ruining things for her.
She was a prisoner, looking out at the world through a window, seeing everyone else having everything she didn’t have. The door wasn’t locked (and if it was she could have climbed out the window), she could have gone out and joined that world outside and all those people out there.
But she never did.
She just talked and talked and talked all about what would happen if… but if never happened.