Thursday, December 17, 2015
The Grand Clean-Out
When you start drawing boundaries against narcissistic and abusive family members, they start being applied to the rest of your life. You will find yourself ending other relationships. This means some will end. In changing the patterns a narcissistic family set upon your life, you will be changing your pattern with other people and places.
It's like someone wrote me on a support board, using the empty room metaphor, because you have gotten rid of the "junk" you can now "furnish" the room with excellent quality furniture, people who are true friends and who won't treat you like how your family did. When I went NC two and half years ago, it has given me time to see the life-long patterns I have fallen into with other people.
While some relationships are intact, and working out, many were not. I realized I had people in my life who treated me the same way my family did, who took me for granted, broke my boundaries, and disrespected me. We don't need to diagnose everyone with narcissism that may not be good for us, even if some you walk away from other would be narcissists, enablers and flying monkeys. One thing you will do is wake up and realize YOU WANT SOMETHING DIFFERENT.
Deciding it is better to be "alone" then put up with narcissist abuse is scary. This is at least 30 people now I have walked away from. One now ex-friend who lived long distance actually told me when I went no contact from the family, "There won't be anyone left and you will be all alone". There was no support there. In a way I knew things were doomed at that point, I was walking down a very different road and had to do what was best for me. And yes this world will scare many ACONS, telling them...YOU WILL BE ALONE, so they hang in with abusers for years because of this fear. Many in society will back up that message. This message of fear keeps many subservient on their knees before narcissists.
In fact this is one reason I stuck by my family so long, I didn't want to go without a family. I didn't want to be alone, but I was already alone! Its a reason I put up with many toxic relationships in my life going back to my 20s. My loneliness and desperation put me in the position to take all "comers" and anyone who would have me. It made me sad thinking about what I put up with because I was so desperate for love and acceptance.
Being an Aspie compounded this. ACONs can be prone to this. Our family has rejected us and inside we yearn, and yes I know I still have it, for a new "family" who will accept and love us. I have had some "found families" over the years but many of those end when people move away or other things happen. I have to learn healthier ways to deal with this.
One thing I had to teach myself, was to say "It is okay to be alone", "you are not a bad person if you do not have masses of people around you". When I was young I had a hard time being alone and couldn't bear it while the me of today has been able to accept it. The worse thing in life isn't always actually being alone, sometimes it can be wishing you were alone because of those you are around. Being in the position where you can't be yourself around people is more lonely then sitting in a room alone. While seeking connections is part of the human condition and it's grown more difficult, the stronger we grow in ourselves, the more we can be "alone" and bear it, and find new and healthier relationships.
Here is one thing too, once you get away from the toxics, your truly loving and good relationships will grow stronger. I and my husband after I went no contact from most of the family especially grew closer and stronger in our marriage. We always had been close but it was like a monkey was thrown off both our backs. I saw him for the kind, loyal and truly giving man he is who stuck by me in thick and thin instead of the constant negative messages from my family who put him down along with me. He stuck by his ideals too and never wavered. I stop blaming him for things, they told me I should blame him for. My other friendships have increased in closeness. I can tell people I love them now and share more vulnerable feelings because those "good" or what some would see as the "softer" parts of my personality are in a more safe place.
This can happen to ACON scapegoats too where they have the numbers game played on them:
Some would say "How could you not see yourself as the problem if you are being treated so badly by so many?" Well that can be a line that will fool ACONS especially scapegoats. There is another trap that can happen lifelong. Your narcissistic mother sneers, "No one likes you" for decades and decades and such a thing infuses into your mind. Your life is then spent trying to get people to like you which brings abusers and toxic social death. Of course you end up in a pit with some abusers in it that you must dig yourself out of.
I was lucky, because in the mix I had a loving and loyal husband and some real friends but for many scapegoats, our families set us up to be involved with other narcissists, toxic people, abusers and those seeking after narcissistic supply.
So you go No contact and then start thinking, "Who do I like?", "What do I value?" and start wondering why you are begging for crumbs.
It's like I woke up out of a second fog, and thought...
1. I don't have to take this crap anymore either. I don't have to put up with anyone who treats me with the same superiority and dismissive attitude of the narcissists I walked away from. I don't have to put up with people who use guilt and always put me last or as a low priority or who want to drain me dry.
2. I don't feel like begging for crumbs or begging to be liked, I just don't want to work that hard at it anymore. That one was quite a revelation. I'm done beating my head against that damn wall.
3. Why be deal with people who spit on the things you value, or who are workaholics or who have sold their souls to the system? As a Christian, I had to question some of my involvements. People who love the system and are part of the evil machinations of this world without any thoughts of right and wrong, society's weak and vulnerable, or true justice, well, they have no reason to be in my life.
4. Why hang around people that make you feel on edge and like you are not enough?
I want to ask other ACONs here, after going no contact did you see your social circles massively change? Did you do a grand clean-out too? It's altering relationships in general. When a person starts drawing boundaries, asserting themselves and refusing all forms of abuse, it changes them. This can be a scary step as you ask yourself what's next. However I am realizing too I am happier even in a more simplified life, being okay and more content at a slower pace.