I love the messages and insight that I receive from warrior moms around the globe. Many of them are afraid to post publicly so they send me emails or private messages about their current trials, experiences or “ah ha!” moments. One such message came through this week and described a phenomenon in the Narcissistic World. I have always called it the “Twilight Zone” or “Alice in Wonderland”. No matter what you choose to call it, it makes you question your sanity and doubt yourself. Narcissists have an innate ability to create their own fantasy world. They believe this “new reality” which is why so many of them can pass lie detector tests. My X re-created his entire childhood. He was the most popular person in school. He was the Captain of every sports team. He was a surfer. All of the girls loved him. If we ran into someone in town who resembled Barbie– he had surely dated her somewhere between kindergarten and college. His older brother was the first to mention that he was often confused about the childhood that my X led, as were their parents. A friend who grew up with my X told a completely different story where the lead character (my X) was shy, unpopular and very socially awkward.Instead of being a red flag for me, I felt sorry for him. He was trying to impress me with these stories because he was embarrassed about the reality of his childhood. When the truth was presented to him one night, he was defensive and then resembled a 6-year old boy. He looked wounded but didn’t deny the facts. His solution- he drank a lot that night and retreated. I received the silent treatment for weeks. How dare I take away his fictional story which he seemed to believe with every ounce of his being.
Our marital therapist refused to meet with my X alone because he needed me there to bring the truth into the counseling session. Left to his own, my X would spin stories and justify his deceitful actions. I would kindly point out the truth and then he would backtrack. The therapist pointed out his lies and lack of remorse which would cause my X would begin talking in circles. He was good at that. He believed what he said even when it wasn’t the truth. If the truth was pointed out, he would talk in circles and create a new truth. By the time he was done, I was left so confused that I didn’t remember the truth anymore!
I wanted to share something that one of my readers sent to me:
Narcissistic Bizarro World: I made an observation today about the narcissistic Bizarro World my X lives in. Let me tell you what lives there.
The world consists of their truth, their lies, and their memories of YOUR life. They do not have memories of all the wrongs they did or of the lies they told…only yours. It’s a world created by them to make themselves feel better and to make themselves look better to the real world. My X can remember conversations we had in 1988 word for word. He can remember where and what I ate while having this conversation. Of course what he remembers is me wanting to leave him for another man. WOW…wish I remembered that because “I would have left him for another man.” I’m amazed and entertained by his stories. Sometimes I want to go to Bizarro World so I can change my memories too.I would change the memories of him making me feel bad for being successful, for being a good mom, for loving my family. I would change the memories of having to ensure my world revolved around his Bizarro world. I would change the memories of always making excuses for his rude and mean behavior to my family or my children. I would change the memories of allowing him to treat my oldest son like hired help. I would change the memory of how worthless he made me feel on a daily basis.I no longer live in this Bizarro world, he keeps inviting me to move there. But it’s a cold lonely place and I prefer the warmth and love I have in the REAL world. ###