Sunday, January 9, 2022

Abuse Invalidation


I saw this recently, and thought it was an interesting list. One thing I always tell younger ACONs or those new to no contact, is be careful who you "share the news" with. You don't want to get burned. One life lesson for me as an Aspie is I needed to be more careful of sharing vulnerabilities or what normal people see as "weaknesses" many years ago. I am far more careful who I share the details of my life with. Increased boundaries did improve my stress levels in life. I was such an open book, it scares me looking back. A lot of the normies did give me a hard time. Those early no contact years were so rough, it's like everyone wanted a piece of me.

 I divided my life, in the "before times" and after times, in an odd way. No one new learns about "the family." Sometimes I think I don't do a good enough job hiding it, I know my creative writing group has gotten a few hints of my past but as far as the story goes, to them it's all fiction. They don't realize I am one of those people whose earlier life was so unique it makes exciting fictional stories. It's so crazy no one would believe it was real. I try to throw humor into it all too to take the edge off. 

  I remember my years and years of trying to tell people and it was a mistake. The way this world works people with normal families just aren't going to understand and I used to write and warn about that. Many ACONs do report that other people will distance themselves from them. They will get uncomfortable and tell you to be quiet, and not want to be as close. Many will indeed accuse you of negativity. They tell you it's "your fault" or put pressure to reconcile or "forgive".

 I did successfully rewrite my life, certain people have been gone so long, they just don't exist in my reality anymore. One thing once the cat is out of the bag, if someone treats you this way, make sure to be careful around them. It can tell you who to trust, do people have empathy for you or do they identify with your abusers? Otherwise be careful who you let it out to. 


  1. I have noticed a shift. There are so many abuse survivors now, that it is not as taboo to talk about as it used to be. The younger generation understands way more than the older generation, perhaps because there are "bullying seminars" in some schools these days (how to know if you are being bullied, what bullies want, the escalation of bullying, how to get help). And kids will invariably say things like "My classmates aren't bullying me, but my Mom and Dad seem to be doing it all of the time." Then the alarm bells go off in the teachers and they are required to report it.

    In one school film I saw they talked about bullying as gossip, false narratives about your character, the silent treatment, ostracism, insults ... So it's about emotional and verbal bullying, not just about getting bruised up on a playground.

    It was necessary because bullied kids can't get a fair education; they are in a state of hypervigilance in classrooms so much of the time instead, and understandably, some parents were furious that their kid was falling behind because they spent their time in school worried about bullies.

    We know bullying goes way beyond schools into families, sibling relationships, friendships and that young kids are voicing their concerns.

    It's so different from the old days where if you ratted on bullies you were thought of as weak and vulnerable. You'd get lectures like "What are you? A wimp? Slug him! Give him a black eye!" - that was in the fifties and sixties. And "Forgive your abuser", "Maybe he was having a bad day", "I get along with the abuser just fine! What's wrong with you?" - that was in the seventies and eighties.

    It would explain why a lot of millennials are estranged from a parent or sibling. They grew up in an era where bullying and abuse were thought of as a public health crisis and a school crisis ... while their parents grew up in an era where you were expected to give leniency and forgive abusers, or expected to get into a bruising fight and injure them before they injured you. Huge generation gap in that regard!

    1. I hope there is a shift Lise. I am glad they are doing bullying seminars, and more. It does seem younger people are far more familiar with NPD, the internet is part of that. The "secret" is out. While we lived in confusion while young at least these type of toxic personalities is being exposed.
      I am glad some kids can tell teachers their parents are bullying them and get results. I was close to one nun teacher in 5th grade, I tried to tell her my mother hated me and abused me and abuse from my father but she just minimized it and didn't want to get involved. I know there was no mandated reporting back then, at least now there's been some of those positive changes.
      Wow that's a great film even to talk about the lies and attacks on character. Yeah things would have gone differently for me. I even got stalked in high school by a guy who attacked me, I successfully fought him off, but he would follow me in high school halls etc. At least now a young girl would have somewhere to go as I was on my own.
      I am glad they educate about the emotional end. I have the feeling my religious Catholic school let even more higher levels of bullying go on than the publics.
      Yeah kids can't learn under emotional stress. I think back how entire classrooms constantly bullied me for being fat and autistic, I did that cartoon story about fighting my whole class in my zine stories, it is based on truth. Hopefully more educators are vigilant about this stuff and putting a stop to it.
      Yeah the bullying is multilayered. I believe having abusive parents also makes a kid a mark at school and in friendships too. I was directly taught to fight bullies, so I got more of the 50s and 60s advice, but you are right they turned it to understanding and "forgiving" your bullies which I think strengthened the harm the bullies and narcs could do. I certainly suffered at the hands of the "reconcile" Bradshaw inspired counselors of the early 90s.

      Yeah millennials were taught about bullying, they are saying family estrangement is increasing, I think more millennials are going no contact and removing toxic people from their lives. Did you ever see the backlash articles like from Campbell decrying the "family estrangement?"

  2. Dear Peeps, sadly, we can thank churches for the invalidation going on. While i am no Bible scholar, have seen Scripture after Scripture describing sociopaths...ya know, the same Scriptures that might ... maybe get preached, and then they get glossed over, real quick. (Yeah, heaven forbid, someone in the congregation might actually study the Scriptures on his or her own - and yikes, grow a spiritual brain.)

    1. Yeah all the talk about reprobates, I remember it. They never preached that in the churches. The UUs have been a lot nicer to me you know than anyone was in the IFB or Calvary Chapel or impersonal Catholic church. I still hold interest in the bible even as a UU. I think a LOT was added to it and misinterpreted for the sake of supporting the status quo. If anything most churches were sociopath validators, and happy hunting grounds for the narcs. I just saw a show on Vice Channel about Sherry Shriner. She was just like my abusive deliverance minister except maybe a few more notches of crazy.

  3. Hi Peeps,

    I tried commenting on this post a couple of times, and they would not take ...

    I'm trying again on another computer and this time I will save what I wrote.

    Anyway, there is hope. Millennials "get it" these days, even if other generations do not, because of seminars on bullying in schools. One of the films I was privy to see talked about emotional bullying in addition to other styles of bullying: ostracizing other kids from a group, the silent treatment, taunting, gossip, spreading rumors, spreading false narratives about someone else's character, making a kid a laughing stock, teasing, etc. Many kids in the early days when these videos first came out would tell their teachers: "I'm not being bullied in school, but my sibling and/or parents act like this all of the time." And since teachers are mandated reporters, they have to report it. So it stirred things up in society too.

    The films were necessary because some of the better parents were complaining that their kid was being bullied and that it was effecting the child's grades. Amygdala hijacking from bullying is a "real thing". The bullied kids' minds are full of such high anxiety, hypervigilance, fear, and fight and flight from the bullying that they cannot learn effectively. Schools are responsible and entrusted to take care of kids, and that means keeping them safe. Bullying is not safe; far from it! Not only that, but schools have an obligation to make education fair and even for all. You aren't going to have a fair education when kids are getting bullied and everyone is looking "the other way."

    The education about bullying might account for why a lot of Millennials are estranged from their parents. There's a real generation gap in terms of how their parents were taught to respond to bullying.

    cont ...

    1. Hi Lise

      Yeah the bullying techniques are the same young and old. So the kids would say well my parents hit me, they lie, they make stuff up and I am glad the teachers can report it. You ever see the Heathers in the movie Heathers or other films about "mean girls", my mother acted exactly like a high school "mean girl" there wasn't much mode of seperation there.
      I am glad the millennials get it. I do fear there is some backlash, you hear the "snowflake" junk it's lobbed at millennials a lot. I am in a strange place because I agree with more conservatives about Covid, but then that whole "conservative" ideal of "toughen up" and that kind of stuff still rubs me the wrong way. They seem to target millennials a lot as being "weak". This is were we have major generational divides, about masculinity etc.
      I was severely bullying as a kid though one "special ed" kid got it even worse than me. He should have been in a special education class, "Stevie" was very "slow"--he definitely had developmental delays, and he was abused daily at my Catholic school. I even still have weird nightmares about that poor kid on very rare occasions. He was constantly abused. So I wasn't top dog for abuse, maybe second though mine was bad enough.

      I do think millennials have been taught a "little" I am hoping about disability rights [aka understanding for someone like "Stevie" or autistic Peep] against racism, etc. to make things better. I still support those "leftist ideals" though the left went nuts with Covid.

      Yeah bullied kids will fail in school and I am glad parents expressed outrage. Too much used to be excused. I do get the feeling decent parents today at least try to protect their children unlike the old days where it was considered a rite of passage to be bullied. You know like when hazing was deemed acceptable, and now is condemned as it should be.

      Yes far more millennials are estranged from abusive parents, they have the education and know how not to waste years hoping they "will change" [it never will happen] or being shamed into sitting their and taking the abuse with the religious "honor your mother and father" brainwashing...

  4. cont ...

    In the 40s, 50s and 60s, people were mainly taught to respond to bullying by fighting back. But imagine trying to fight back when you are 5'4" and the bully is 6'5". That is a big problem, and I'm frankly dumbfounded it was taught for that many decades. I know plenty of people who grew up in the 50s who reported to me that between being bullied and child abuse, it was practically normal to see more than half of your classmates with scratches, bruises, open wounds, bloody lips, blackened eyes, ripped up clothes. You were either a brute, a victim, or both. It was hard to be impartial.

    Then came the book, "The Battered Child" in 1968. That put an end to egregious forms of child abuse and corporal punishment. You could no longer leave marks (scratches, bruises, welts, paddle marks, whipping marks or burns) on your child.

    However, there is a lot more to child abuse than that, as we know. Getting rid of other kinds of child abuse and bullying took more decades.

    In the 70s, 80s and 90s, bullied kids got therapy. Bullies were shamed a little (however, we know that kids with conduct disorder have no remorse for hurting others, so being shamed doesn't work well). Kids who were bullied were told how to avoid bullies and being bullied, how to relate to bullies, how to forgive bullies, how to gain back self esteem. You can guess that it didn't work at all and made bullying much worse. You can practically hear bullies taunting a kid, "Oh, you need therapy because of me! Did he wipe your tears away in his office? hahahaha! Wahhh! Sucker!" You wonder how some school official could even think this could work. Anyway, the pressure to forgive bullies was a 70s, 80s and early 90s trend.

    Alice Miller had a big impact in the mid 1980s among psychologists, but her findings took more years to get where we are today, though school shootings are such a big thing now, and schools are still not peaceful paradises where your focus is purely on getting an education.

    A lot of Millennials are the opposite in terms of the trends of 70s - 90s: "Be nice to bullies and they will be nice to you" (they are aware it does not work), "Forgive bullies because they had such awful childhoods" (they are aware it does not work either). I find they are more sympathetic to what you went through than past generations.

    If one adult bullies another adult, it can be an arrest-able offense. How can we have different standards for children than we do for adults? So I see this as the next chapter: making bullies accountable. Schools are just starting with this trend and it's about time!

  5. I have memories of my father telling me to fight bullies at school. I never was defended. In many ways I was raised more like a boy than a girl. It is strange to me how the family denied me femininity on multiple scores. My brother was allowed to punch me like a boy and I dished some back. I do think of how screwed I would have been if I had not been equal in size and almost equal in age. What would have happened to me? They still would all be hitting me. I even got instructions from my father and uncles to make sure to hit with a fist leaving my thumb outside if it so I would not break my thumb. And the family abused me for being "butch" when I was raised this way, there was so much insanity.

    So yeah I was taught to fistfight the bullies. I did fight a few people off in self defense during my life but I look back and think how weird this was. I was a girl, why was I treated like this, this was another layer of abuse. When I got older this may sound strange but I expect men at least loved ones in life to be somewhat protective. If that's not there forget it, because I was not protected.

    But it's true in 50s and 60s, kids were taught to fight and I am old enough [into the 70s in my case] to remember the beaten and bloodied kids at recess when they played the homophobically named "Game" "Smear the Queer". Stevie was often their target. I could be sometimes but usually hide out and physical abuse was a little less for girls. I had been taught to fight too, like a boy. I remember bloodied noses, ripped clothing, bruises, pulled hair, and destroyed things such as ripped up book covers. When I made my Vietnamese friends who were rejected by others over racism in mid to late elementary school, we kind of served as protection for each other.

    I remember that book the Battered Child, yeah it changed things. I was in a state that outlawed all corporal punishment, when I was at that Catholic school out east, you can't even imagine my shock when I moved to the Midwest and all the teachers in public school! had giant paddles with the holes drilled in them. That got outlawed a few years later when I was in high school even there.

    1. Peeps,

      There is a lot of that culture of bullying women and girls to the point of long estrangements in my extended family too. And there is also an odd tradition of women wearing men's clothes and cutting their hair short in the family as well.

      Maybe this kind of attitude is more prevalent in narcissistic families than in most families? No studies have been done on this, but I do see a slight trend in narc families.

      As you might have guessed, I have very long hair and dress in dresses most of the time. When I was with the family, I tended to dress down quite a bit, and definitely wore men's clothes a lot more in their company (believe it or not, it was kind of unconscious - it was an anxiety reaction and secondarily a reaction to wanting to be "accepted").

      There are plenty of books out there (like "The Macho Paradox") that explains the prevalence of abusing girls as a societal ill. I think the reason why girls are chosen is that they are usually physically weaker and they are taught to fawn (as opposed to rebel, or speak their minds, or argue about anything, or even run away). There is tremendous pressure put upon them to accept abuse, and in some cases, to apologize to abusers.

    2. Peeps,

      There is a lot of that culture of bullying women and girls to the point of long estrangements in my extended family too. And there is also an odd tradition of women wearing men's clothes and cutting their hair short in the family as well.

      Maybe this kind of attitude is more prevalent in narcissistic families than in most families? No studies have been done on this, but I do see a slight trend in narc families.

      As you might have guessed, I have very long hair and dress in dresses most of the time. When I was with the family, I tended to dress down quite a bit, and definitely wore men's clothes a lot more in their company (believe it or not, it was kind of unconscious - it was an anxiety reaction and secondarily a reaction to wanting to be "accepted").

      There are plenty of books out there (like "The Macho Paradox") that explains the prevalence of abusing girls as a societal ill. I think the reason why girls are chosen is that they are usually physically weaker and they are taught to fawn (as opposed to rebel, or speak their minds, or argue about anything, or even run away). There is tremendous pressure put upon them to accept abuse, and in some cases, to apologize to abusers.

    3. Yeah as you know Lise, girls are second class citizens in my family. Like one was supposed to be ashamed of being a girl. Remember that one cousin who had become trans, I found myself thinking that wasn't the normal avenue to trans life, my family hates femininity so much, why wouldn't she question. [Not saying this applies to all trans people] I think she could be non-binary now, not sure, saw a picture that popped up on Facebook and she was no longer dressing "male" but was using "they". That's fine if that's a happier medium.

      I was told girls were weak, and that boys were far more important. I got some really sick messages growing up. I know this "not allowed to be a girl" stuff impacted my life greatly. I was punched on by my brother like another boy certainly not a sister. Never protected or any of that.
      I wonder if these kind of attitudes are more prevalent in narc families, if everything is about domination and success, anything feminine is going to be hated. The "biggest brutes" win. Girls were supposed to be boy's servants in my family.
      I am glad you enjoy wearing hair long and wearing dresses. As you know I wasn't allowed to wear dresses. I had to act tough, and like a man to survive my family. Can understand wearing more male clothing and things like that. Mine would have laughed at me if I ever tried to wear make up or other girl stuff. I do sometimes wonder if I "fit non-binary" even myself though consider myself too old to bother--live cis married life, so why take on another label and like wearing dresses and some feminine stuff, so why confuse people? Also being autistic alone in females changes the equation. Someone told me I was a demisexual, and that seemed to be true, but kind of while an interesting term to know doesn't have much impact on day to day life.
      So yeah around family I didn't beautify self. Want to hear something really weird, I switched to wearing dresses in my 20s, had these nice crepe dresses in 1990s, wish I could find some again, I'd wear some of those, around relatives, long flattering on fat people too, mother would get pissed, "Why do you wear nothing but dresses!!??" She got pissed when I was around 32 years of age, bitched me out for wearing dresses [I was living in my small rural town then, and part of fundamentalist church by those days] and said, I am going to sew you some pants and she did and gave them to me, she was so offended by me wearing dresses. I never wore them. Yeah some weird stuff looking back....My mother obviously saw boys as superior and girls as inferior to the point of hating classic "female dress"

      Yeah females who are "feminine" in old traditional sense are seen as "weaker" by narcissists, and deserving of "abuse"

    4. It is something we have in common!

      You said: "I wonder if these kind of attitudes are more prevalent in narc families, if everything is about domination and success, anything feminine is going to be hated. The 'biggest brutes' win." - seems like it!

      The very, very weird thing going on in my family, is that most of them pronounce themselves as "Women's Rights Activists." Really now???? Huge hypocrisy, maybe even a cover. Who knows.

      I see you have a new post up. I'll go check it out!

    5. Yeah they hate anything feminine. Women are second class citizens, and it didn't escape my notice that so many of the narcissistic women dressed as "male" as they could get away with. I never saw Aunt Scapegoat even wear a dress in her entire life. She dressed male, wore short hair, eschewed make up. I'd want to puke watching some of mine become "Women's Right Activists", mine didn't go that route though there is the one virtue signaling "liberal branch" with the gay/non-binary cousins, most of mine were Trump/tea party conservatives who seemed to just see women as good for making babies and sex. The masculine feminine hating women, seemed to back all that up. My mother never wore dresses but I was a failed woman for being childless. I think your family probably uses that as a cover, also if they are the types to have "good careers" that's just more showboating.

  6. I think in the old days they did leave marks on kids and thought nothing of it, you can read old books where the characters got welts, and now the parents or teachers would see the inside of a prison cell. These are some major changes in society I am not sure many realize.
    Yeah the therapy approach to bullies empowered them. Many of us suffered from clueless therapists even outside of the schools. Bullies would laugh off the shame. I am glad more are realizing shame is a waste of time on them. I think all of this made bullying far worse. This is one reason bullies in many religious circles can use those as happy hunting grounds as their victims have the onus put on them to "forgive" and abuse is seen as a "character building" enterprise. I remember bullies making fun of kids who had to go to therapy. Used to see some bad stuff with the bullies in schools as a sub teacher. Many of the abused were beaten down, while the bullies got slaps on the wrists. "Just ignore them" you know that classic BS where the victim blaming got out of control. Heck even on ACON blogs, you can see the "just ignore" them crowd telling the rest of us to shut up because we aren't kissing bully feet.
    I hope that the "forgive the bullies" stuff is ending. It's still strong in religious circles. It just strengthens them.
    I think millennials are far more understanding to people in our position and those who have gone no contact too. I have noticed a lot of elderly people basically believing you should take abuse for the sake of the family.

    I agree about making bullies accountable. There's definitely a lot of us who would like to see our abusers held accountable.

    Human society could change for far better if the bully problem was dealt with.

    1. Agreed. When so much of society is in a "fawn, freeze, flight, fight" response from abuse, it holds evolution back. We are not as smart or capable as we could be.

    2. Yeah it does hold society back. I think on a personal level what I lost having to contend with so many abusers, what's it doing to society as a whole. Oh think about covid imagine if trillions was spent on societal improvements instead of making up for damage for "great reset power mongers and mad scientists in labs.

  7. Hi Peeps,
    I can personally check each one of these off my list of personal experiences with narcissistic family members (and others) unfortunately. Look forward to expounding more, but today has been my only day off in six days, and tomorrow begins a new week of six more. I have a Mason here (finally after two years) and I am both the foreman and "helper". As well as the "lunch lady". I have to figure the work by sections, sweep, keep things clean (lest I pay a horrible price) mitigate dust with my hydro-machine etcetera. We repaired tile damage, cut wider cracks to repair cracks in a patio done back in 2004, did the last of the plastering of a tiny house wall, and will now go on to put a railing (3/8" rebar, cement and sand in a 2" pvc tube, to be removed afterwards) and a final paving of our carport.
    As for brother's treatment in Mexico, I think it was the B-17 treatment (intravenous daily for two weeks) and the hyperbaric chamber therapy. I had waited a month for the appointment with the urologist here, and the info came two weeks before he was to make his decision on which way to go. I called him on the weekend of, and he told me he was "busy packing" and had made his mind up. He ended up after a couple words or sentences more later, hanging up on me. This was too much for me on a deeply personal level, so I did not communicate at all with him during his two-week treatment in Mexico. Must have ben surreal for him, his doctor no-doubt telling him "how lucky he was to have a sister who cared about him so deeply", and here she was completely absent (a common conundrum in narcissistic relationships). He could have reached out to me very easily, but he didn't. You know, once again, I guess "that wss my role".
    Yes, lots of familiar parallels with our leaders in charge of this pandemic, the extreme gaslighting, and narcissism galore.

    1. Hope your masonary work went well Chelle,

      Yeah with sick narcissists, they will even do the "i need and miss you love bomb stuff but once you are actually around, it's always slammed door in the face time. I almost wanted to write back "I'm busy" to brother's last email, it would have been dishing back some of what I had gotten but knew no contact was best to hold to. Sorry to hear B-17 failed. Always have read about that one.

  8. Hi Peeps,
    He went on to develop liver cancer a year after treatment of B-17. His liver failed, he developed ascities, and died within ten days of it. It was after they performed paracentedis (draining of acculuated fluid in the abdomen) given what his wife said, I think he developed peritonitis sorry if spelled wrong).
    His wife's brother developed terminal cancer a short time after my brother had gone down there for the B-17 treatment, and she took her brother down there and stayed with him for the same treatment. He died a short time later.
    Dengue is also a thing where we live, but we don't worry about it. We just live normally, try not to get into "buggy" situations. We find the trade-offs well worth the risks.

    1. Hmm wonder if the B-17 even works, maybe it has to be an earlier intervention. They have failed with cancer haven't they? Almost everyone I know who gets it unless they were very wealthy--the only survivors of cancer I personally know--seems to die and pretty fast after the diagnosis. My one friend only lasted 10 months when given 3-4 years and chemo. Another friend died within 6 weeks of diagnosis and was told it was inoperable. You know there was enough bad things to happen to people before they turned the world into even more of a death factory. The cancer patients obviously are in big time trouble now. Glad you all can handle the dengue. Yeah stay away from bugs like some here have to avoid places with tons of ticks.

  9. Yeah, on the "I'm busy" thing, they all use it. I finally came to the conclusion that what they are really saying or passive-aggressively sending is the message of "I don't have any time for you because you are not a priority," which is of course mean and hurtful. Also it has layers of "get over yourself" in it, as if you are always in need or asking too much. When it was used on me, none were true. You have already indicated the same.

    1. Yeah remember this old post?

      My goodness I was unpeeling some layers even a little time ago, cleaning out old emails, saw some from mother listing endless friends she was doing stuff with dinners, "I'm going out with the girls", it was constant Look at me bragging telling of a full social schedule that never slowed down. Yep they all use it. If people are annoyed everytime you show up/call etc why show up anymore? The relationships even outside of the abuse and narc scope all withered on the vine from their neglect. When I went NC from brother I had not seen him in almost 10 years. Yeah they always treated me like a "bother" I think that was part of their power mongering too. You deserved better too.

  10. Wow Peeps,
    Those emails are horrible! Your brother sounds exactly like mine. He's extremely put out and agressive towards you, and likes to intimate the huge difference between his life and yours, in that he has to work and you don't. I guess he thought it was fine then to dump his (imbellished) load of crap on you. I sense resentment big time, just like I did with mine. They sound like twins.
    Your sister is doing it too, although much more subtley, with her "mother earth woes" inferring the opposite of what you might have going on. She's pretty smooth, that one.
    Your mother comes off like an unapologetic asshat. Makes no bones about it, here's my head, my ass is on the way. You may not like it, but you'll have to lump it.
    That one cousin sounds like someone who has been "indoctrinated". Can't recall what the other said.
    Yeah, I think your aunt was gaslighting you through the rendition she gave to others concerning her absence. I can totally see why you walked away from all of them. So sorry you had to go through all that.
    Fortunately, I only had a mother, brother and sister to deal with. I thought it was only my mother, because I couldn't take it anymore and left at a very young age with a man who didn't like what he saw either. His words at the time were, "you are in a master/slave relationship, and it is beneath you." He went on to be my husband of twelve years. I was mostly gone from these people's lives, and managed to heal up alot. I was given confidence and self esteem. Boy, the narcissists hate that, don't they? But the couple times they came back into my life put me right back there, in short order. No poking the puppy. No stating the obvious. No daring to expect anything in return, etc. I didn't know my brother and sister were prrsonality disordered until this last round. My grandmother told me years earlier, my mother and sister didn't get along because they were too much alike. I scoffed saying it was unimagineable that anyone could be like my mother, and she held her hand up in an "okay, wait and see then," fashion. And boy did I.
    My sister was cleaning out my mother's apartment, while my mother was in the process of dying in the hospital. Going through some of her things, she said she came across a box entitled "treasures" and there was a letter or card in there from me. She said, "she really loved you, you know ..." "She told me it was one thing she wished had gone differently, she just really wanted a relationship with you ..." I got really pissed at that, and suddenly I was the one putting words in my sisters mouth and presuming things she had not even said. All of this sudden I was crazy, and everyone had to "walk on eggshells around me". I stood on my head, trying to get my sister to see what was "implied." She insisted, "she didn't imply anything, she just said she really wished she could have been closer to you."
    I ended up not taking the bait (laid by one or both) and said, "Well that's pretty easy to do ... treat someone well, they stay. Treat them badly, they leave."
    The mason didn't show up today, so I've gotten a little reprieve. I'm surprised I didn't comment back when you wrote this, as I can totally relate.

  11. Hi Chelle,

    My brother was very aggressive and abusive, a few years ago I had to unpeel the layers triggered by that awful book, Educated. He was always threatening me. It really showed me how bad things were. [I was surrounded by so many toxic people it was insane, just the sheer numbers}

    Everytime I talked to him he would brag about what a big shot business man he was--he took kids in a 12 seater van to sell candy bars, and about his purchases and say "I am busy". Kind of weird why would you expect me to hang around forever?

    Yeah it was always about having crap unloaded. Every time he made a major purchase, car, Christmas presents, furniture, house rental, he would send me elaborate photos to show it off. It was pretty sick.

    It's too bad you had one of those kind of awful brothers to deal with. Yes with sister she was always "busy" too, and moaning the woes of being an upper middle class housewife, with too many errands and kids to take care of. I think most of her kids are in college now guess she won't get to play martyr as much. I always wanted one to rebel but some STEM heads and new narcs seem to be what have come out of that household. Don't know what the two youngest became after high school because I've been gone so long.

    I hadn't seen the kids in 2 years at that point. She drove on a highway around 1 mile from my apt.

    Yeah my mother was an asshat, always talking about running to and fro with third and fourth cousins, and friends three times removed and someone's great nephew etc. Funny how she could have one spend a week in her house but I couldn't get 10 minutes. All the cousins were indoctrinated and did everything they were told.

    Yep total gaslighting from the aunt. Proud of myself I wrote I am done and walked away for good to those excuses.


  12. Thanks for your kind words, I am glad I got away from all those people, they were AWFUL. I spared myself so much trouble, stress and worry. I can't imagine dealing with them during this BS. I hope they forget I exist, I think the N sister is glad I am gone, she has no interest in any contact. I've gotten older and it's been so much time, they wouldn't even recognize me.

    what the other said.
    I am glad you only had a few to deal with.
    I am glad your then husband saw abuse in front of him and warned you. I am glad you were able to heal. I was doing a LOT better just don't feel like I got enough time if this makes sense, this Covid stuff almost feels like they are winning to me but I am glad for escape and to be away.
    Yeah they hate confidence and no self esteem. I am a different person now, probably would only last 5 seconds in the room with any of them since I am out of Fs to give. LOL

    Sometimes it takes time to see how disordered the siblings are and how they got infected by the narc virus via a shared parent.

    Some age into their narcissism. My sister was not the same as a child as what she later became. In fact even when I showed high school mates on Facebook years later pictures of my sister, they were in shocked at her schoolmarm appearance, beady eyes, hard face, in fact one old high school friend said she couldn't believe that was my sister, and my sister was already being abusive to me in high school and pretending not to know me etc.

    Sounds like your sister was just dishing out the guilt and manipulation. I heard the "she really loves you" crap everytime I tried to stand up for myself and would even say someone who loves someone doesn't treat them this way.
    Yeah they will try and instigate emotions in you and then get you labeled as the "unstable" one everyone else is "oppressed by", I've been down that road before.

    I was the horrible girl who "hated" her mother instead of anyone examining how my mother treated me.

    I was always told everything was my fault and I know pre-no contact I thought, "nothing I do is going to fix this so it's time to quit and I did! Quitting narc families is the best decision, nothing to be gained but misery among them.

    Thanks for your response Chelle, helps me to talk to others who've been through it.

  13. Helps me too, Peeps. Thanks as well. Lunchtime break only here.