names have been omitted in this post
As I type this in my darkened bedroom, in the midst of dark sheets, a white duvet, pillows and a blue monkey beside me that my daughter left behind during her last visit... I think of how insane my life and so many other's lives have become... because of one person.... one single person that decided JUST BECAUSE THEY CAN to create chaos, division and loss for absolutely no reason other than selfishness and utter sport. This is the mind of a sociopath: I will treat you how I wish and punish you because I can. I will then twist everything to be your fault. I will lie ruthlessly to achieve what I want and I will laugh in your face at what a pathetic mess you have become.
My ex is a liar. A complete and utter liar. He has so many enemies he has no idea... or he doesn't care. There are people who hate him because he's screwed them over time and time again. People who have been kind to him and helped him. Year by year the list continues to grow and I get contacted by people who want to give him a piece of his own medicine. People that have nothing but pure contempt for him... people who want nothing to do with him. People who feel he owes them "I want him hung by the highest tree!" Men and women who look him in the eyes and are polite but know what he's really like.
I've received emails, texts and phone calls... ranting and screaming about what a sorry person he is... and how they want something done about him. They come to me like indignant grade school kids going to a teacher to tattle or a bunch of disgruntled customers who want to file a complaint with the Better Business Bureau and want their grievances fixed. They come to me expecting me to do something for them I guess... for answers on how to handle their mess. I can't help them but I can listen. I can have ***some*** empathy for their injustices, slights, losses and upset but it fades after some time as my eyes glaze over because those same people had to know he was screwing me when they were in denial he was screwing them.... and guess what? I don't like that game... so while they sit there and boo hoo and harangue about how "they want that you know what to pay"... I feel sorrow for them yet grimace.
I grimace that it's so ironic how people will sit by idly while watching someone screw someone over... always thinking they themselves are the exception. It's funny till it happens to you, right? Generally speaking that's the human condition... that they are the exception in any and all negative circumstances of life... whether it's being screwed over by a shady business partner who was thought to be a friend, a child being killed by a drunk driver or an innocent elderly parent getting hooked on prescription drugs after surgery... people foolishly succumb and believe that horrible stuff happens to "those other people". People likewise vehemently deny someone is a narc yet then are so shocked when they find themselves as the one with their pants down and bent over... they stand there bewildered as life laughs and says "Do I have your attention now???" and shakes it's head at how naïve they were to think for a second that it couldn't happen to them. This is exception talking. This is because they think that the one laughing at my misfortune, the evil one is actually their friend. I click my tongue. The problem with people is that when they have someone heartless standing before them that they've already witnessed doing unethical things they naively hold onto doubting that same person could move on to more destructive behaviors like x, y, z. But that's the thing about doubt... you can say "I doubt he'd do that " or "I doubt she would do that" is that it signifies hope that they wouldn't commit more criminal like behaviors. But they will. Stop doubting. Stop hoping. You've been shown who they are. Believe it.
People generally speaking want so badly to belong, to feel wanted, to be included and to be needed they will deny someone could do evil to them and subsequently think I (or you) must deserve such horrible behavior... after all, for someone to act like my ex has... I must be a witch, right? I must be all the horrific things he's said about me. I must have really deserved to have been cheated on. I must have really deserved to have been dragged through a year long divorce and being financially screwed over. I must have deserved to have then been further financially screwed over by my greedy dad when I bought my grandparents home from him just to have a roof over my head. I must have deserved to have my children essentially stolen from me because my ex did just that through alienation and the Tarrant County Family Court System. People look at him and what a criminal he is and cannot imagine someone like him married someone truly good and kind. People figure you too must have some sort of criminal element about you or at minimum a mean heart to have said "I do" to such a monster... they stupidly believe evil joins with evil.... but only rarely. Usually manipulative evil preys on good... and the good suffer while the evil thrives.
Manipulators excel at twisting reality to be what they want. They change records at companies, hide assets, gloss over numbers, state businesses are worth much less than reality, don’t pay taxes, lie about stock value, about income and more. They mold things to be what they want when needed that second(!) .... often when it comes to profits, losses, payroll and taxes. They lie about their income to get out of paying settlements they owe their soon to be ex spouse and child support.
One example of manipulation is if a business is a non profit and saying because of that we cannot afford to give our employees raises; keeping them in poverty... which is insane because as anyone knows all businesses have to make enough to cover their employees pay... or else they should call it a day, pack it up and go home. But yet when said employee remarks that they haven't gotten a raise in so and so amount of time or it’s been inadequate it will likely be skirted with some excuse that is not even relatable or justified.
Alternatively some people are exceptionally cunning at making reality be what they need it to be to suit themselves and secure their own job security... and the sad thing is that the people who need to be questioning them, doing some research and peeling back the layers... bringing in a financial analyst to uncover why the numbers are not what they should be ... aren't. People just listen to what they're told each month(!), each year and with robotic nods say "okay" and take whatever empty words they are spoon fed. What they need to be doing is getting in there and finding out what the heck is going on, find a mole that will squeal, then start cleaning house regarding the ineffective people they have and let the dirty heads roll. But that would require someone putting in some effort and most people are complacent... while others lower down the totem pole are who continue paying the price.
I half walked half limped into the house... my poor toes bright red and angry from being in nude heels for hours on end. In my hand I held a Styrofoam cup with ice water and on my arm hung my oversized black bag. Dressed in black skinny pants, a gray blouse and a black jacket I shut the door behind me and heard my mom call out. "Yeah? Are you finally home? Were you going to stay all night?"
I made my way slowly into the den and setting my bag down on a barstool chair I kicked off those cursed heels. Making my way to the couch I sighed and plopped down on the couch beside my mother. The dim light of a lamp bathed the room and all was quiet... my daughter was at her dad's.
"Almost... "I remarked tiredly.
"What the heck? It's one in the morning!" She exclaimed.
"I'm not doing that again. It's unnecessary." I retorted. "Not on this pay." I added. "Thirteen dollars an hour and I need new feet." I took a sip of my water.
"You can get a receptionist job anywhere in this town for fifteen dollars an hour. Starting at fifteen dollars an hour. I'm telling you you're getting screwed. I know because I've been looking. And other places that hire for your same position as a coordinator are starting at fifteen. You need to start looking. Stop hoping for better, for more because I don't see it happening." She told me. "For your position you're severely underpaid."
I sighed and rubbed my eyes. I didn't mind working hard and doing what I needed to... to get to where I needed to be... putting in the time and effort... sacrificing.... but eventually... one day you expect to be compensated adequately. And when it never happens you feel initial irritation grow to resentment that begins to get so thick you could cut it with a knife. So you smile with gritted teeth and keep hoping it's going to get better... but likely you're one of those naïve folks I wrote about earlier... when you've been shown it won't based on previous results but fail to admit reality as it is before you.
"Yeah..." I replied wearily and took another sip of ice water.
"Have you heard from any of your 'friends' lately?" She asked with a knowing inflection in her tone.
"I did... they all want something done about him... " I said referring to my ex and people who knew him, "But what can I do? I can’t fix it for them. It’s another example of all his evil doing. Yet no one was outraged when he screwed me over in the divorce. No one was upset when I had no one coming forward to help show his awful character in court. No one was angry when I lost my kids and saw all the destruction he's caused. Now they want to moan and groan about how they feel and how they've been treated poorly or screwed over or still are. Don't cry to the one you at one time thought deserved it and now don't. Figure it out on your own." I said blithely.
Sometimes we get cheated in life... either by those we loved or others. Sometimes we get cheated on emotionally and sexually... and sometimes we get cheated on financially. I think the worst is when people commit all three. They feel zero remorse for what they've done... narcs cheat people without blinking an eye. Yet God will take every single second of our lives and use it for good, even if it’s really, really bad at the time... something good has come from your losses and battle. We may feel we need a magnifying glass to see what it is at times but despite everything you’ve gained something... what is it? Likely lessons that needed to be learned; not to blindly trust folks but to guard your heart and take getting to know them slower. Likely confidence to believe in yourself and to stop looking to others in relationships to make us feel worthy. If people act like they are half in it or have one foot out the door... you can say what I say “Hey... don’t be here unless you want to be. You aren’t sure? I’ll show you the door.” We don’t have to walk in uncertainty anymore with how relationships will develop and turn out because we know our worth. Likely what we’ve learned is boundaries. If someone is forward and sits to eat with you when you want space you have the right to not engage or excuse yourself.... no more being what others need. No more putting others comfort over the space or self care you need in that moment. Likely we’ve learned to become a little stringent where needed because we used to over give to self detriment. No more allowing others to set the tone for your day. Likely another lesson is that when we lose a liar and a cheater we’ve lost nothing. People who treat you as disposable and someone to betray add nothing of value to your life... we’ve likely learned the hard way to not view them as a loss. Likely we’ve realized that we have the abilities and confidence to live life on our own free from the narc... we were likely dependent for so long... on someone not healthy for us that caused us pain and heartbreak... but through withdrawal and recovery we learn to stand on our own two feet again... maybe a bit battered and weary, yes, but free(!) and anyone who knows the freedom felt after a narc knows that is worth gold.
Likely you’ve been stripped of everything... your marital home, your possessions, your savings, your children. The silver lining is after you’ve been stripped of everything you get down to what you have left... or namely who. You have God. Some will scoff at you like He’s worth anything... after all, they laugh; He hasn’t waved a magic wand to fix your situation and they call you a fool. They fail to realize this world is broken and not always good and God warned us of tribulations. But anyone who has fought this battle knows we come to the end of ourselves and our egos. We cannot fix this on our own as our humanly inadequate capabilities will fail every time.
Becoming reliant on Him leads to Him bringing victory to our lives. The Israelites viewed the lack of water at Rephidim as a disaster and an indicator that God had merely left them to die in the desert. They then followed with questioning whether God was with them or not. In reality, God was with them, they just didn’t realize it yet... as He was testing their response to adversity... their grumbling was like that of a whiny preschool class who wants their Capri Sun Juice ten minutes ago. By testing the Israelites God was showing the condition of their hearts and wayward human ways. In contrast it showed Him being in control; His ability to dispense grace and blessings because of who He is not due to their works or them demanding He prove himself.
In the desert he gave you manna to eat, food that your ancestors had never eaten. He sent hardships on you to test you, so that in the end he could bless you with good things.
No matter how bleak it may seem and how badly the narc has stolen from you God will make a way and provide for you... impatience is hasty and not of faith... but faith is waiting and believing.