This week I am going to table talking about the discovery and recovery part of the Narcissist’s abuse for a bit and concentrate on who I was before a victim. I want to share what I am finding about myself, and what I believe made me susceptible to the Narcissist games. For, to truly heal, you must look in on yourself and understand you. You must love yourself.
Life experiences define who we are and what each of us view as ‘normal’. Humans, being typically social beings, look for people to interact with, to learn from, and hopefully grow as a result. Everyone has different experiences and therefore look for something different in life. Some of us are completely happy to march to their own beat. They have friendships, but are just fine with that. Others of us search for that companion to build a love story with. Someone you choose to get intimately involved with and plan to spend the rest of your life with. I chose the latter.
Now, what did I look for in an intimate partner to love for life? Starting at the beginning; I was a shy kid growing up. I remained that was much of my pre-teen and teenager life. I really didn’t date in high school; I was too timid. My parents, particularity my mother, were not interested in seeing me date. I began to fill the void of not dating with a story of what love was going to be for me in my mind. I imagined it over and over again. I became a hopeless romantic, fantasizing about life and love playing out as it had in the stories I heard, the books I read, and the movies I watched. For reason’s I am still discovering, I built my perfect love story as the fairy tale of the knight in shining armor saving the princess.
I started dating looking to fulfill this love story I created in my head. I was so naive, and still so shy, it was a recipe for disaster. I was constantly framing my relationships in the story so much, that I did not get to enjoy and learn as I feel I should have. Looking back at my first encounters with people I chose to enter a relationship with, I always wanted to rescue them. I wanted to make the day easier for them, fix something for them, or make them feel better, all as a show of my affection. I wanted a princess to sweep off her feet, put her in my coach and drive her to our castle to live happily ever after. I remember truly story boarding it all in my head. Once I found her I would be her everything, and she would be my everything. I would do anything to stay atop that horse as her knight in shining armor. That is what I was supposed to do as a loving partner. I knew no other way.
So I gave myself to anyone I dated. I really did. After a few failed attempts at the fairy tale I started to learn. I learned that relationships were two way, and I had to be more than a knight on a horse and she had to be more than the princess. However, I kept turning to that original fairy tale in my head. Then one day I found the girl I wanted to spend my life with. She was so sexy, outgoing, happy, and full of life. I just wanted to be part of it. My friend introduced us and she instantly rejected me. Unexpectedly, that rejection did the opposite of what I expected. It drove me wild. With that the games began, and I did not even know it. After a few more attempts she started to show notice, explained her life to me overnight. Told me how she was struggling threw life, dealt a bad hand, but wanted so much more. If you have not guessed it, I dove right in and rescued her. Rescued her from what I was told was a different path than she wanted to be on. She was stuck there because of family and friends abandoning her. So I listened to the story, I helped her, and we became one mindset. It seemed like destiny. I was so absorbed in the rescue of my Narcissist lover and could no longer see any other story. It was our love story.
Shakespeare once wrote a love story. You may have heard of it, Romeo and Juliet. Two kids fall in love; they decide to marry even though the families will not hear of it because they are enemies. Romeo decides to run away, Juliet fakes her death because she can’t live without him. Romeo really takes his life because he will never find a love again, such as her. Shakespeare wrote probably the truest love story ever written, correct? Did he? I believe he was writing a story of how lust, infatuation, romanticism, and the story we create of love in our heads can destroy us if we are not careful. Look it up sometime; there are many out there that have taken a different look at this play such as Joseph Pearce in his post ‘Romeo and Juliet’ is not a Romance.
I still am discovering why I built up my story of love as I did. Quite simply, I believe I was emotionally underdeveloped for my age. So when another great story teller came along and filled in all the chapters I was missing, I was hooked. Now, if only those chapters were real or true. As we know, they were not. The narcissist lied to me over and over to paint this picture of my perfect partner, that I had created in my head. It’s like she knew. The narcissist is good at reading you and mirroring your deepest needs and most sincere qualities. They have none of there own, so the steel yours. Therefore, I thought it we were soulmates, I thought it was the love to last a lifetime. I was wrong.
I am now divorced from the narcissist. I see the world, love, and life differently now. I nearly fell for others with NPD qualities since, but have learned to discern those traits, and part ways with those that possess them. In hindsight, with the emotional intelligence I own now, I could have re-written my love story. Where then, would I be now?