When you are in an abusive relationship with a narcissist, you will wonder if you are losing your grip on reality. There are constant contradictions. Reality is malleable to the narcissist.
Truth is what they decide it is. Truth is what they say it is. Truth and reality are constantly changing. They explain the fact to you as they want you to perceive them, in order to get what they want.
They will say one thing on Friday and then say the complete opposite thing on Sunday…
FRIDAY …They will complain that the house is messy and that you are not as good as other women about taking care of your “home.” Other women do it better. The house is deplorable and any “good” woman would be embarrassed if she was so lazy about keeping her home organized and clean.
Not only that..Here is the kicker ..they will say “If you really loved me then you would keep the house clean and organized. A man needs a clean house to come home to.”
SUNDAY…They tell you that you are spending way too much time attending to the house. You care more about the “damn house” being clean than you do about them. You are insensitive and have your priorities screwed up. You should be spending time having sex with them… or helping them with finding a job… or whatever they want at the time.
Here is the kicker…they say “If you really loved me, you would spend more time with me and less time cleaning! The house is clean enough. You are being selfish by spending so much time making the house just the way YOU want it.”
You are lazy about taking care of their home, yet you are too ambitious about your job. You are slutty when you wear make-up out of the house, but you are a prude when you are not in the mood to have sex with them (after they have been raging at you.) You are too demanding of their time when you need something but you are too unavailable when they want you.
My ex used to demand that I be extra quiet in the morning so he could sleep. He needed to sleep so that he would not be tired at work. I agreed and said I would like the same courtesy so that I would not be tired at work.
In the morning he would get a cell phone call and answer it, in the bed. He would face directly towards the back of my head and yell into my ear. He was as loud as anyone you have heard drunk and bellowing in a local bar.
I asked him to please take the call into the other room because he was yelling into my ear. He said he would only be another minute and he did not feel like getting out of bed. Fifteen minutes later he would still be facing his mouth right into my ear and talking much too loud for any normal telephone conversation.
I would bed him not to talk so loudly in my ear in the morning. I had only had 4 hours of sleep at the point that he would get these calls, because I worked the 3-11 shift and did not get to sleep until 3am on most nights. I begged him to take the morning calls in the kitchen. I asked him to at least face away from the back of my head.
NO. NO. and….NO. My requests were not reasonable to him. He was too tired in the morning and should not have to get out of bed just because he had a phone call.
I mentioned to him that if h was so tired , he could let the voice mail pick up the call and not answer it at all. For someone that was too tired to drag himself out of bed, or turn his body the other direction, he seemed to have an awful lot of energy to talk so loudly on the phone.
When you are in a relationship with a narcissist, what is fair for them does not apply to you. The fact that they need certain basic things does not mean you are entitled to them.
If they are tired when they get home from work, it does not mean that you are allowed to be tired also. They can make mistakes and expect to be forgiven, but God forbid you make a “mistake” like being too tired when you got home from work to prepare their bag lunch for work.
It is in this sea of unending contradictions that er lose our self esteem and our basic right to take care of ourselves. We become so conditioned that our needs do not matter, that it can take months to years, after leaving the abuser, to be able to prioritize our most basic needs.
Time and connection with others who have experienced this type of abuse, will help. Stay on your path to healing. Keep reading and keep writing 🙂