I spent years in a relationship with someone overwhelmed with NPD. Maybe it was more of a cage fight.
It was only supposed to be a brief fling….
I didn’t know what I was getting into…
Suddenly life was all mortgage and diapers and screaming….
You felt it happened to you…
Damn right. but i quickly realised i was in trouble…
So slow, so very slow.
Nothing was ever right for her. She’d switch the Aga off in November and back on in June. She’d hide my stuff or just throw it away. Someone once rang when i was in the bath and said they’d call back in half an hour and she said , ‘no, in 32 minutes’.
So, you have a thing for control freaks….
She’d go in my room and remake my bed!
..for control freaks who are also very intrusive…
She’d want sex in the middle of an arguement..!
But I didn’t choose that situation..!
No, it chose you and you allowed it because in amongst all that shit was some little veign of gold, something wanting expression, some shard of selfhood..
I dreamt I was riding her like a broomstick..
You’re doing something witchy with her…
Then I dreamt I was remonstrating with her about something, punching my fist into my hand to emphasis a point. Then the perspective panned back and I was Robin from Batman…
…unconsciously identified with the caped crusader….
I’m on a crusade.
She is the crusade. Who do you imagine yourself to be that you might storm such battlements? And for what purpose?
I’m in adolescent avenger mode…
and getting her to carry all the chaotic childhood stuff so you don’t have to..
Meantime you can educate her like some post modern Eliza Doolittle, and panel beat her into some semblance of functioning so that the chaotic child can be looked after by her if not by you.
The catastrophic expectation is a memory’. Donald Winnicott.
Sooo, i got a bit paranoid after this little chat…. paranoia that seemed unrelated to stuff you might actually get paranoid about, like coppers parked outside your house and threats of imprisonment. No, it was more like… being taken away for ever and ever and ever because… you have green eyes… or fair hair… or nice shoes.
Then it condensed into a fantasy of two women banging on the door, determined to..take me away. I was …five. Then I remembered, two women, come to take me away from my black mother, whose language I spoke, whose smell I knew, whose heart loved me… but who would now be gone. Forever.
perhaps I could reconstruct her. If I squeezed my eyes hard enough and explain well enough how you have to be… if I spoke slower..maybe.. or found better words..
We have poor relationships for a reason. Despite the misery something makes it worthwhile. And despite your intention that something is pushing for the light. Like the ring, it wants to be discovered. So you have to work hard at your misery. Really help them. Try harder. Explain it again. And be patient.
Your friends commiserate with how much shit you seem to take. Someone tells you that you must have the patience of a saint. That’s it, you’re just too good a person.
I was only free of my NPD nightmare when I realised the part I was playing, how I’d foisted a chaotic inner child on someone only too ready to receive the projection whom I could then remonstrate with from a distance whilst getting her to double up as my DIY Mom.
The only way out without having to repeat the whole thing (as badly) was to suffer the reality of my own early losses and feel my paranoia in its proper context.
I lost my mother.
They gave me another one but she was broken.