This was/is abuse and it requires deep introspection to gain clarity enough to start on our way to positive solutions and recovery.

From my book: Greg Zaffuto – Author – From Charm to Harm and Everything Else in Between with a Narcissist

So often this abuse confounds or confuses us in so many ways that our thoughts are never centered on any one issue as it concerns US – that is the TRAUMA associated with this abuse. More than likely the negativity that surrounds you is ever present, consuming, and preoccupying your every thought process. It surfaces as anxiety, depression, shock, grief, or the whole nine yards. These are the first tiny steps that start us out on our journey to recovery and that is unraveling the confusion and sorting it out. We KNOW something is just not quite right. We must acknowledge the confusion to know it, and then we process it. There is not anything unusual about these experiences as confounding as our thought processes are, but we must understand that it is a part of the process we have to go through first and that is unraveling all of the confusion. It is what you hear described as the ‘fog’ that we are in. From this your voice becomes the tool to externalize those confusing thoughts to help you put some order to the disorder. Believe me it will come, but like everything else you have to start someplace.

When you actualize the situation, it is not just grieving the emotional connection that we felt for this person, but a new reality that they were there and actually extorting our love and trying to destroy us – just the reality of this abuse. The real truth about them now becomes a huge influence on our thoughts and feelings and it confounds the situation even more as far as clarity. It is clinically called ‘cognitive dissonance’ where we have two conflicting realities. We believed we were in love, but we also know that it was not real love but instead a huge betrayal of our love from an abusive person. Not easy to have to believe the truth because they are so far apart and polar opposites. Nor is it us ignoring the facts that this abuse was staring us in the face. Sure, we were aware that there were problems because this Narcissist was acting out in cruel ways that we personally understand from our experiences, but we were trying to be real WHERE THERE WAS NO REAL. We were being manipulated in the cruelest way by someone (a Narcissist) that was monopolizing on their deceptive ability to manipulate and manage down our healthy thoughts. This is subjugation of a human being pure and simple or denying the human rights we all deserve. This is our new reality, and we have to explore this so that we can actualize the truth.

It does not make us weak it was brainwashing and extreme betrayal that created the confusion that blinded our ability to move forward in the positive direction we wanted. Everyone tells us we should have seen these flags or signs, but it is not JUST THAT, it was also about the manipulative influence that kept us believing – BUT we did get it eventually. I heard the same things, and I did get what they were saying. Repeatedly I was asked how I missed the obvious signs that my Narcissist was “off” in so many ways, AND supposedly they saw it. But I was ALSO off my game in many ways after the many years of this abuse and just too vulnerable! Narcissists break people with emotional and verbal beatings because they are just that sadistic.

 What it really boils down to is the reality of the WHOLE situation that built up to this. We did not take on a Narcissist knowing they were damaged and destructive. We took on the possibility of a shared partnership (so to say), or the possibility of starting on a journey that could be that “love of our life” and that is absolutely normal to every person. Yes, we were swept up in a whirlwind romance and sure that was a red flag, but really other people have experienced the same and made it work (in the normal world,) so why would this be different for us? The red flags came later and AFTER we fell into our fake love BUT we believed it was REAL love and were controlled to believe this. The extreme charm and attention they gave us or ‘love bombing’ was just the trap that started us on our journey and what imprisoned us in their dysfunctional world. How many people have experienced or dealt with these two conflicting realities – being made to believe in love but the love was all a con job to harm us or them! I had no reference in my life that alerted me to any of this and why would I? Therefore, it is nearly impossible to go to our loved ones or day to day friends for the actual support to help us through this. We need REAL insight from experienced people!

We understand the process of falling out of love and probably many have experienced this before, but in a NORMAL relationship – THIS is totally different. What did we love? A rock, air, dirt, a tick, an alien? There is a big question that needs answered and those ‘love’ emotions are tugging at us in a different direction. Our minds fail us in the confusion at times and we believe that they DO LOVE US because they are still contacting us after the fact so let us work even harder at fixing this, so we go to that place to believe AGAIN. But it will be just more of the same abuse, but we STILL do not actually get it. We eventually will and do get it, but completely wrapping our head around that is insurmountable and takes a great deal of perspective and time to actualize. Pus it is all compounded with so many other layers that need dealt with – too much adversity and confusion at once so it becomes traumatizing! It is like believing that your neighbor saw a ghost – we sort of kind of get it, but without past experience to back it up WE DON’T REALLY GET IT. Be gentle with yourself and ALWAYS realize that it is all part of the process we have to experience to put real perspective where it belongs.

Really the most important aspect is convincing ourselves that this was a Narcissist. Until we get there we will only remain in a confused state, blaming ourselves and reaching back to find out what WE did wrong. This only adds our own layers to this abuse. YIKES!! What I can say through my experience is that everything does fall into place, but the process takes education, time, real support from other targets/victims and a great deal of energy to purge all the negativity out of us before we move forward. Do not forget we can and will fall backwards and that again is just part of the process and we learn from our mistakes. There is also the overwhelming exhaustion from carrying so much anxiety and the trauma, and that surfaces as physical ailments. So, so much to deal with and then there is more than likely a ‘smear campaign’ that is waiting for us and SUDDENLY we are the bad guy.

 So again, once when you start to see the light you stumble into more abuse because that Narcissist has been out there destroying your integrity with that SMEAR CAMPAIGN and well before the relationship ended. They have slandered you in every possible way just through knowing personal aspects of your life and using that familiarity to fuel their smear campaign by making it negative and sourcing out people to pit against you. Again, for now you must put all of that on the back burner to get out of the immediate fog. Believe me that the people that listen to a Narcissist’s BS are not worth your time. Anybody that buys the Narcissists BS without allowing you to be present to tell the truth and defend yourself is just as disordered as the Narcissist. In the end I did not lose the people I loved that were real and important in my life. Again, still part of the process from this abuse – but understanding it at least allows clarity and hopefully a direction.

We were not in denial in the beginning we were tricked, conned, manipulated, etc. But here is the point we also never realized this in its entirety while we were with them and WHY? Well because the agenda of the Narcissist was not apparent, and the manipulation was subtle and consistent. We were always drawn back into the abuse through Narcissistic magic or trickery. Day by day we were managed down more and more through the Narcissist’s vast arsenal of tools to the point that we were not in our original state of conscious thinking – our reality was altered by our perpetrator so they could harvest us as supply!

What I have tried to do here is give an account of what to expect, as well as a little education so that you can hopefully avoid the many obstructions that I stumbled through. Knowledge is power in getting through this. This is gained through the experiences of survivors and other targets/victims. No/minimal contact to allow clarity and start the process to recovery. Greg

Posted on October 22, 2022, in Narcissism. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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