names have been omitted in this post
I had set the oven to precisely eleven minutes and ten seconds. When the timer dinged I would have hot Pilsbury chocolate chip cookies ready to eat. I took a seat on the oversized couch opposite my mom and pulled a soft gray blanket over my lap. "What do we have recorded?" I asked her, reaching for my glass on the table beside me. She scrolled through the dvr and spoke "We have that new HGTV show Home Town... you want to watch that?" She asked.
"Yeah, let's check that out." I told her and she selected it. When the first commercial break began and she began fast forwarding it I rose to check on my cookies baking and she spoke "That's the kind of guy you should look for... a big boy that knows how to fix stuff." She said... "I like those old homes, they are cute and reasonably priced." She told me.
From behind the bar in the kitchen I called out... "Yeah, that's attractive.... and red hair wouldn't hurt. You know I like red hair." I smiled... then added "They are really talented. I don't know what town they are in... I'd have to google. But for cottage size homes the prices are more on point there. Those homes that cost a hundred and twenty thousand there would run three hundred thousand to five here. And even if you can afford one of those homes here the taxes eventually squeeze you out. Property taxes here are insane especially considering our roads are riddled with potholes. Looks to me like the money isn't well spent. All I know is we need to find a place more reasonably priced. And near the beach. The day she turns eighteen... "I said referring to my daughter who was at her dad's house that week. "Were out of here. She can go to college wherever we move."
"I agree... if your situation was different we could move now. But that's not happening." She commented.
"Ha!" I laughed "He wouldn't move just because I want to." I said, referring to my ex as I opened the oven and with an oven mitt reached in to withdraw the baking sheet of golden brown cookies. Setting them on the hot pads I'd set on the countertop I spoke "Those Interrogatories he sent are the biggest joke. Page after page of questions about the blog, narcissism and parental alienation." I grimaced, sliding the cookies one by one onto a plate with a spatula.
"He's trying to get it shut down. That's what he ultimately wants." She told me.
"Yeah....he doesn't like the truth exposed. I really think it shoots himself in the foot going after the blog... all it does is bring the focus onto the posts about everything he's done. He's essentially admitting it's about him." I pointed out and carrying the plate of hot cookies over to the couch I settled back in my spot. "I hope the court is going to effectively address all his lies. Because trying to get the truth out of him is about like trying to get a banana from a monkey."
Most people know that lying always has eventual disastrous consequences... tiny lies turn into a multitude of bigger lies and ultimately the trust someone had for you is chipped away bit by bit until it no longer exists. Hence, what happens is the liar experiences a loss of friends, family and in turn loneliness. Not to mention people experience a loss of respect for the liar. Someone is not capable of cheating without lying; the two go hand in hand... it's a sign of lacking character. So when someone lies it makes you question everything about them... if they'd cheat on their spouse would they engage in shady business practices? Yes, most likely. Cheating and lying isn't restricted to certain categories like just marriage or work... you either have good moral character or you don't.
A narcissist doesn't feel guilt or shame when they lie. If they get away with the lies they speak they truly believe they are powerful. They believe they are untouchable. They believe they can get away with nearly anything. As they escape the consequences of lie after lie they become self assured nothing can stop them. They believe all those other people are stupid and dumb. They wear superiority like a crown of gold and sail through life silently smiling how smart they are.
But that's the thing about lies... they eventually run out like money in Vegas or a child's coins at the glass case trying to win a stuffed animal... they may win... for awhile... but not forever.
When a narcissist lies to you and you believe he or she.... they think "What an idiot... you're so stupid you deserve to be lied to..." The narc sees you as someone who deserves any and all negative outcomes in your life... any hardship or financial struggles, any medical or health issues, any emotional trauma or despair... any loss of children, friendships, home, job or even basic peace and joy... all those you deserve to lose.... they seek to destroy you. They will use other people to make that happen. They will lie to anyone they can find to help enable them (sometimes unknowingly) to destroy you further.... therapists, teachers, counselors, Ad Litems, In-Laws, Attorneys, Judges, children, babysitters, mediators, friends, family, etc. It doesn't matter who you are.... you aren't immune.... they will lie and use you to further their agenda of punishment and revenge.
5 Examples Of How A Narc Lies To You:
1. "Little Susie or Johnny is already asleep." Is what he or she says when you ask to speak to your child on the phone whom you share custody of. The truth is... your child is in bed but reading, listening to music, etc... your ex isn't going to allow you to speak to he or she because they are blocking communication and bit by bit hoping to destroy your relationship with them. A narc's one of many favorite weapons is a phone.
2. "Everything is GREAT!" Most people who are healthy individuals realize the balance of being realistic, voicing aggravations in their life yet also expressing their positives and joys. They are able to say "Wow, this day really sucked but I'm blessed to be going home to my family." A narc will paint a picture of pretty that is really not accurate... in the drive to be "positive" and exude the image of pristine perfection they so desperately want to put out there they promote a positivity that is not authentic but instead exaggerated and fake. This positivity is a lie.... as they use it as a poisonous tool to paint things not as they really are.
3."He's a friend of mine." A narc may state or refer to someone as being a friend of theirs but nothing could be further from the truth. Narcs surround themselves with three types of people; the ones they abuse, the ones they use and enablers. (Oftentimes these are interchangeable). They use people but call them friends... when in reality they are not friends... in fact, likely the narc views them with apathy and as a joke to be barely tolerated. They may agree to someone stopping by to see them and bring them lunch everyday; because it feeds their ego and their stomach... but the second they turn their back they say ugly things about them.
4. "There are winners and there are losers." Most people in life are able to recognize that others have strengths and weaknesses and just because you have some weak areas doesn't equate to you being a loser; some people aren't good at math, some people aren't good at planning.... some people are awful at public speaking or creativity. It doesn't make them a loser but instead human as we know we all bring contributions to life that have the ability to bring positive change either through our work or personal lives or both. But a narc only sees winners and losers. You're either acing life or suck at it.
5. "I really want you to have a relationship with our child." This is probably one of their biggest lies because they have brainwashed your child against you and yet try to play the role of someone who laments the loss of your relationship with said child. They talk a good talk and sigh how they wish that was possible... maybe they voice they wish you'd just try harder. Maybe they tell others it makes them sad for you and your child. But the truth is someone who is manipulative does not have any sorrow or regret over the brainwashing and lies they've orchestrated. When your ex tells your child "Do not unblock mommy on your phone. " and yet THEN he tells you: " Like I have stated in the past he does not trust you. He is the child, you are the adult. If you want to be a part of his life you need to make a real effort." (Word for word what my ex has put in writing to me). We know that's all a pile of poo. It's really hard to make an effort when your continued attempts to maintain a relationship have been undermined and thwarted. A manipulative person will say and do anything to make custody go in their favor including lie to anyone.... even their own child.
names have been omitted or changed in this post
As I drove down a main thoroughfare the wind ruffled my hair from the open sunroof. It was April... spring was here and the Texas temps had risen to the seventies and even eighties except for the occasional thunderstorm with hail that kept us on our toes. Adele was crooning "Hello" on the radio and the rebirth of green waved from the trees as I drove. Approaching a red light I slowed to a stop and glanced over to my right. A man was sitting in the vehicle beside me... he saw the blog address on my vehicle, gave me a look of recognition and then a somber look of sympathy. I didn't know who he was. The light turned green and with farewell glances we both pressed onward down the street to our separate destinations. I wondered who he was. If he was kind. If whoever he went home to each night loved him and he loved her. I always wondered what people's lives were like behind the poker expressions and closed doors. As I drove my thoughts went to a recent conversation with my daughter about her dad and step-mom.
"Mama, you and Georgina are so different." She told me, referring to her dad's new wife as of about a year.
"Really?" I murmured not really caring but being polite.
"Yes, you are." She affirmed as we'd walked the aisles at the local Tom Thumb grocery store.
I had tossed some fresh pico de gallo into the cart for taco night and spoke "So? How are we different? The way we dress?" I guessed.
"Yes! She dresses very lady like. Like she wears all this dressy stuff if she's not in workout clothes. When she dresses up she carries those tiny purses on the chains you don't like. How'd you know that anyway?" She asked me.
"Because your dad likes that look." I replied cooly. "Well, he does now anyway. I like more edgy stuff like skinny jeans, a leather jacket. Or western boots."
She nodded "Yeah! You're right. You're both really different. She works out all the time. You don't work out as much. She doesn't eat any junk food. I mean... like NONE!" She exclaimed with big eyes. "She won't even eat pizza! Can you believe that? She just eats salad like every meal. And you eat hamburgers, pizza, all that stuff. She drinks wine like everyday and you drink like a few times a year. She likes all the songs on the radio you don't like or that are inappropriate... She tans and you don't. But you look way younger than her. Because she fake bakes and you use sunscreen." She continued as I listened quietly letting her talk. "Oh! Guess what? Daddy just bought her a brand new Mercedes convertible." She told me.
"Let me guess.... it's white." I told her wryly.
She looked at me with surprise, "How did you know that?!" She exclaimed.
"Because your dad likes white vehicles. I like black. When we were married I kept thinking he was going to buy a black Chevy Silverado. Then he bought the Jaguar." I replied.
"Yeah... why did he buy the Jaguar?" She asked me.
"We had been to a Stars game in Dallas and he saw one in the parking lot when we left. He loved it. Sometimes people have different ideas about what they like. Sometimes those ideas start out the same and one person changes. Or both. When we dated he had a truck. I still love trucks. I don't think there's a prettier vehicle than a clean black truck. But we didn't agree on what to get." I told her. "Ultimately he made that decision."
"He eats sushi now." She told me "I think it looks gross. But they love it."
"Everybody likes different things. The trick is finding someone who likes similar... to a point." I told her. He liked what I did once upon a time... chicken fried steak, trucks, country music and being down to earth. Not so much anymore.
A narc initially loves everything about you... but at some point, maybe sooner, maybe later they will begin finding flaws in what you wear, how you speak, what you do, how you think, etc. Before long every aspect of your physical and mental state will be altered.... or at least attempted to be. It's a slow and systematic process of dismantling you piece by piece until you no longer even know who you are. Perhaps initially when you met you were applauded for having an independence about you, a strong willed attitude, a strength like none other... "like an ox" he says. But along with those traits, witty comebacks or down to earth clothes and nature combined with an appreciation for nicer things in life but knowing what's truly important you are soon met with disdain. That truck you like won't be purchased. There will be a Jaguar or BMW sitting in your drive. That SUV you chose will be in white he states, not black. That night you go out he will expect you in a dress not leather pants and a pullover with boots. That chicken fried steak you enjoy has been replaced with a salad or piece of grilled chicken. The words spoken of how beautiful you are now replaced by glares and caustic remarks of how you look terrible. That food-to-go he ran to get for dinner will be at a price and it's high... it will involve another chip off your self worth and esteem. That play at the performance hall downtown or the country music concert at Billy Bob's you wanted to go see is met with snores on his pillow at nine o'clock at night. That inner strength you possess will eventually be regarded as a liability... to him... he will find you to be the bull that cannot be tamed.... and you feeling trapped in a china shop it's no use; no matter which way you turn something breaks and it's always all your fault.
It really doesn't matter how much you seem to initially match up on likes and dislikes... because with a narc it never matters. That is how they hook you initially....the key to unlocking your love is being a match. it's called mirroring. They mirror what you like and don't to capture you. Eventually like sleeping beauty you awaken to reality... it was all a façade. They weren't real.
You know what you like and what you don't. Maybe you like preppy clothes, white wine and vacation on an island every year. Maybe you like trucks and motorcycles and dream of owning a few acres one day. Maybe you like Thai food, modern furniture and recycle. Maybe you don't like pink, take boxing lessons and only wear black. Whatever you like or dislike you know as you've been exposed to more people and experiences in life you've evolved and discovered more about yourself. But narcs don't really have their own engrained personalities and style. They adapt to... or more namely mirror what you like... and whoever they're dating at the time. They mirror what they believe they need to be to gain the person they want to be with.
The best thing to do whenever dating someone new is to ask them what they like. Don't let on too much. Ask them questions and see if what they like is in sync with you. Because giving away too much leads you to getting snookered. They are listening very closely to find out exactly what the correct answers are... they want to pass the test.
Maybe you want to move to the beach the minute your kids turn eighteen; when you're no longer stuck in a certain zip code due to shared child custody. You voice this dream to whomever you're dating and suddenly they want to move to the beach too one day. Some people will tell you anything they have to in order to get what they want... you. If they deem you the one they want ie; soul mate, some will stop at nothing... including lying through their teeth to hook you. Later, when it comes time to move beachside suddenly they have amnesia and say: "I never agreed to that. I don't know what you're talking about." You will be standing there with your mouth hanging open much too late realizing you got duped. It happens.
We have to remember that the narc's master way of operating is deception. We need to stop viewing narcissists as purely those who take one too many selfies and are vain. That is such a small part of the picture of a narc. If that's the only issue or one of a few vain or diva might be a more appropriate description. True personality disorder goes much more in depth than the surface and to an extreme. Instead, they are master manipulators and one way they do that is through various tactics; one being mirroring. There is the person who changes who they are to date others due to low self esteem and then there are the dangerous ones... the narcs who purposefully copy what others like and dislike so that they may glean their trust and love. Once they have you convinced you've found "the one" they will waste no time in getting a ring on your finger, a whirlwind wedding behind you and before you can even blink you will awaken to not a bed of roses but instead thorns... where once upon a time everything was a world of beauty now is uncertain and even treacherous. As you begin to realize you were merely looking into a mirror they held upon their face the looking glass won't be a reflection of love but instead deception and misery.
Trust me... they are taking notes. They are noticing how you take your coffee and how you like your tea. They are watching what music you choose and what colors you wear. They are listening to which movies you love and books you read. They are observing every little thing. Guard how much you share. Ask questions and ask again. Look closely and see if all those wonderful traits and interests you have shared with them and magically mutually share could be too good to be true. More than likely they are.