It has now been almost two years since my children and I have lived with our narcissist, and for almost a year and a half before we left he was only home the occasional weekend. We now live two thousand miles away from him, my daughter and I have not seen him in almost two years, and my son for less than an hour one time since then. His physical presence is no longer felt in our lives, but the fear, the trauma, the dis-ease, that stays with us.
We all work hard on our healing. It has been my life’s focus since before we left. And yet for the last year my son – the wonderful sparkling ray of light that he is – has dealt with suicidal thoughts, my daughter cries because her father has no idea who she is, and I work at building myself back from the broken mess that he left me. We try and go no contact, my daughter does not speak to him at all and my son only every few months for a few minutes. I have to talk with him sometimes as we deal with the divorce or issues with the children. We have shared custody even though he has no relationship at all with the kids. That means I constantly have to talk to him to get permission to do even basic things for the kids. Of course, that all comes down to money and his unwillingness to part with any of it.
Last weekend my son spent a few days at his grandma’s (dad’s mom), and the dad (whom we will call TAB – short for The Angry Blob) called several times S (for son) ended up talking to him briefly one time and then either didn’t pick up the phone or left the room when his grandma answered for the multiple times TAB called after that. It puts him in a state of fear and anxiety having TAB call, TAB knows this and continues to make calls over and over whenever S is visiting at his grandma’s. S lives in terror that TAB will come here and harm us all – and based on how our lives were before we left that is a very real fear. The threats of harming us all were made many times.
So now my boy is home from what should have been an enjoyable few days with his grandma full of suicidal thoughts, anger towards his father, and fear of being hurt. We have been living in a safe environment for two years and still there is all this fear and trauma left in our lives.
We have an excellent tribe of people who support us, a great healing system, people who help out S and I when he is in this state. But who would have ever thought this would be my life? Or the lives my children would live? Thank God we are learning coping skills, we meditate (which is a life saver… literally), we spend time with family, we see therapists, we are building a new life.
He is determined to not let us heal. Fortunately for us, I am a very stubborn and strong willed person and I am confident that we will heal – in fact we are healing and have a lot over the past little while. But is it ever a long process!
What I have found is that people don’t talk a lot about what family life is like with a narcissist, or what life is like after – when you are recovering from narcissistic abuse. I am going to talk about it. I think it’s important that we share these things so that other people who are also in trauma know they are not alone – so we know we are not alone.