The wedding

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Part of the reason we got married so soon after our engagement was pregnant. You know the whole thing about being married before we actually had a baby, still being just the two of us on our honeymoon, and not having to delay it more years until it was easier to have a wedding with the baby. 

He wasn’t really involved in planning the wedding which really is a very surprising, a lot of men aren’t. My friends wanted to throw me a bachelorette party but it was kind of odd seeing how I was pregnant. I had more than one conversation with him to see how he felt about it because he’s always been pretty jealous. He promised me that it wouldn’t be a problem. We ended up going to San Diego and barhopping which I didn’t really partake in because again I was pregnant. The idea got brought up about a male strip club but it just felt odd to me especially because at that point his friends had no intention that I knew of a throwing him a bachelor party and it was only about two weeks until the wedding. 

I was fine with him having a bachelor party, in fact him doing so would make me feel better about having my own bachelorette party. There is only one thing that I requested and that was if they did decide to do it to not do it the night before the wedding. 

Well guess what. After the rehearsal dinner the night before the wedding his friends decide they want to take him for a bachelor party… the night before the wedding. no shocker he didn’t stumble into bed until early morning hours. He was hung over late for pictures to the point where we had to do most of them after the actual wedding. He was supposed to do all the ones without me prior to the wedding. So we were pretty late getting to the reception. 

When it was time for toast at the reception my oldest brother made a toast. At the end of it he said take care of my little sister because if not we have the Air Force the army and the Navy in our family. His uncle stood up right after that and said don’t worry about that we have the CIA and our family. So, to me, that sounds like, “Don’t worry how you treat her we’ve got you covered.” And boy his whole family had a great laugh at that. That should’ve been a huge red flag to me; it angered me and cut me off guard but I had no idea what narcissism was at that time. 

When I was still eating I noticed that he had been away from our table for a while. I looked around and figured out that he was greeting everybody in the room without me. He didn’t even say anything to me or invite me to greet people with him; it was like I didn’t even exist anymore to him. 

Now mind you, I was about five months pregnant at the wedding and I had to use the restroom quite often. Every single fun traditional song or dance such as the chicken dance, the hokey pokey, YMCA (all that dorkey stuff) happened when I wasn’t even in the room. But he was.  I’m still a little butt hurt that no one noticed or cared to wait until the bride was there. 

I guess I have a hard time letting go of grudges. This was 15 years ago. I think what makes it hard to let go of it is that no one else saw anything wrong with any of it. 

Love, marriage and children

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I knew I wanted to marry my husband pretty early on in the relationship. It took quite a few conversations, a few break ups and nine years for him to give me an engagement ring. Some of that time is understandable because I was 14 when I met him. 

At the time we had an apartment together and his sister lived with us. On Christmas morning we were opening our small stack of presents and there was a present wrapped for me from him. When I opened it inside was a small square jewelry box. I was a little stunned and did not get my hopes up that was it was a ring. But when I opened it that’s exactly what it was, and engagement ring and wedding band. I was in shock. I don’t show my emotions very well when someone gives me a gift anyway. I stared at the opened box in shock. I look back and forth between my dark and his sister as they sat waiting for a reaction. As I sat waiting for a long awaited and anticipated proposal… which didn’t happen.  I don’t remember every single detail but I do remember asking if it was an engagement ring. I remember taking it over to him and asking him to put it on me to which he said he didn’t think it would fit because I’d probably have to take it to get sized. They also told me how they had wanted it to be the gift that I chose to open the night before for our one present that we open on Christmas Eve so that I could have showed it off to my family when we went over there on Christmas Eve for dinner. 

Maybe it was wrong of me but I didn’t know how to react. As much as I wanted this engagement I wasn’t sure how to feel about him not even proposing to me and about him not wanting to put the ring on me. 

Before we got married when I was almost 22, I remember distinctly laying in bed with my narc and him telling me that he thought that it would be cool if we had a baby. Technically I think the words he used were, “I think it would be cool if you had a baby.” That day we conceived my daughter. It must’ve been in January; she was born the next November.

In February we decided we were going to let the least go with our apartment because our landlord was raising the rent and we didn’t think the apartment was worth that amount. So we decided together to move in with my parents save up some money and buy a house. We had already decided that we were going to get married in May. Right before we moved in with my parents we found out that I was in fact pregnant. 

We moved in with my parents in March and I had to stop working at the beginning of October because I was just too pregnant to keep working. Our daughter was born in November. 

When she was about five months old ice started working for a lady that I knew who had a daycare in her house. I had worked with her before and she was very willing to let me bring my daughter with me and do what I needed to take care of her while working. Only a couple weeks after starting work I began calling out sick which is very unlike me. I could probably count on my fingers how many times I’ve called out sick from a job in my life. She was pretty intuitive and suggested that I was pregnant. Since my daughter was so young, I was breast-feeding, and I haven’t started my new cycle yet after giving birth, I highly doubt it that I would be pregnant. After calling out a few times because I was sick I took a test and lo and behold I was in fact pregnant. At that time my daughter was only six months old. 

I freaked out because we had been having a lot of relationship problems since the day we got married and over the course of the pregnancy with my daughter. I ended up quitting the job because with this pregnancy I was nauseous and throwing up the entire pregnancy. 

Father’s Day Gift for the Narcissist 

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For almost 25 years I’ve put lots of thought, time and effort into getting just the right gift for my Narc. It should come as no surprise that it’s never the right one according to him. 

– Says he can’t use. (But then he does.)

– Says he doesn’t need. (Even though he’s been looking into buying one himself.)

– Says he doesn’t know why I’d get it for him because …

– Purposefully doesn’t touch it or use but uses other items just like it from other people. 

– Etc. etc. etc. 

So, now that I’m at a different place mentally in realizing what motivates him, I’ve come to an idea. This Father’s Day I’m going to do what he does. That is, buy him something that makes me look good being the giver, something that I say is for him but is really for me, something to send an underlying message. 

This is more difficult than I expected!

Have you tried this?

Any ideas would be great!

Silent treatment 

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As I said before, once I figured out that I was dealing with a narcissist, I went gray rock. I did this because I felt like I had tried everything else. I tried sympathizing, I tried changing myself, I tried standing up for myself, I tried being more assertive, I tried talking to counselors, I tried self help, I tried everything I could think of. 

I actually kind of went gray rock before figured it out as a way of coping. Our conversations got farther and farther apart. I tried less and less to please him because no matter what I did it wasn’t the right thing according to him. I got tired of conversations turning into blame and verbal or emotional abuse. The only way I could create a peaceful household for myself and my children was to have as little conversation with him that I could. I would only start up a conversation or respond to his conversation if it was absolutely necessary. Topics such as things pertaining to the children or perhaps groceries or the house that we were living in. 

I reacted less and less to him ignoring me and less and less to his subtle jabs at me and I didn’t let his ignoring my questions determine my decisions.  I think maybe he realized I was distancing myself. Recently, I don’t know exactly what triggered him but I could tell there was a shift in how he was treating me. My thoughts are that he was leaving it up to me to repair our relationship and when I was making little to no effort to do so that he decided he was not going to try anymore.

That doesn’t mean he stopped his narcissistic tendencies. For example, the flowers that he sent to my work on our anniversary but yet he didn’t utter one word to me about our anniversary or anything else that day. 

Another example is that we owe some money to the IRS and last year he asked me to set up a payment plan on our joint account. He told me how much to set it up for and told me what date he wanted it taken out on and told me he’d deposit the money for that bill. (Now keep in mind, I have a second payment plan set up for our state taxes that we owe and I pay that.)

He also had promised our children new bedroom sets but when we went to the furniture place they denied giving him a credit line, which I think was partly from not filling out the online form correctly. So he asked me to do it. I was very hesitant and I told him I didn’t have the money to cover it. He assured me that he was going to pay it so I did apply.  I got approved and the payments got set up. These were to be taken out of the same joint checking account as the IRS payments are taken out of.

A couple Christmases ago he bought me a new iPhone and put it on our mobile carrier account that I pay. He put down a large down payment, don’t get me wrong,  and he agreed to put the difference of the bill into that same joint checking account to cover the difference in payment. When my phone was about paid off we decided to allow my son to get his own phone line on our account and he decided he wanted to upgrade his phone to the same version of phone that I had. We went down and purchased his phone; he paid off the rest of my phone and the payments for the remaining balance of his phone were to be added onto our our monthly payment (which again I pay). 

So what he would do would be to deposit the total amount of all three (IRS payment, bedroom furniture payment & phone payment) in the middle of the month before they were all due. Most of the time he deposited the money on the day it was due or after. 

When the same as cash timeline was up for the bedroom furniture, he paid it off.  That was in March, 2 1/2 months ago. The last time he deposited the money for those payments into that checking account was in January. He did not deposit anything in February. In March he paid off the bedroom furniture and told me that he could either buy groceries or deposit the money into the account that week but not both. I told him that was fine and if he could get the groceries because I didn’t have the money to get any that week. That’s exactly what he did it was my bad to think that he would deposit the money the next week I’ll take that as a misunderstanding and disregard him not paying depositing the money in March. 

Because he had paid off the bedroom furniture, the amount of money he needed to deposit into the checking account was about half of what it had been. But he did not deposit any money in April. When it was time to deposit the money in May, I reminded him that because he had paid off the bedroom furniture he only needed to deposit half the amount (I did specify the exact amount). He replied with something like, “Oh yah, OK”, but again he did not deposit any money in May. Here we are a week into June and I feel like I need to know if that money is not going to be deposited so I can make sure to cover it. So I decided to send him a text. Communicate in writing right?

It read, “Why haven’t you been depositing the money for the IRS and phone into the account?” That was at 8 AM two days ago. He has made sure to ignore my existence at home, to leave the room and go out to work on his car in the garage when he sees that I finish making dinner, and of course not answering my question. 

I don’t know if he’s trying to prove a point, if he’s trying to punish me for questioning him, if he’s mad that I expect him to deposit the money for the payment arrangements that he wanted me to make (that he agreed to pay), or if he is mad about me going gray rock. Maybe it’s a combination of all of these… I really don’t know. 

I’d be interested in hearing what anybody reading this thinks about it. 

No win situation 

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I met my husband when I was 14. I had had other boyfriends but nothing really long term. He was my first really serious relationship.We’ve broken up a couple times but we were always back together within a month. 
I remember always talking with my friends, sharing stories about our boyfriends and our good times and our bad times. What I notice though, when I look back, is that any time there was a conflict between my boyfriend and I and I would share the stories with my friend they’d offer helpful advice on possible solutions. The thing is, I’d always already tried their solutions and failed at resolving anything. Every time they’d say try this or try that I’d say but I have and this is how he’d respond. They said well try this then I’d say I have and this  is how he’d respond. 

In other words, there was no resolution because anything I’d try was never going to be the right answer. I tried changing my behavior. I tried changing my attitude.  I tried changing the way I spoke, my appearance, you name it.  I tried changing pretty much everything about myself to try and make him happy, to try and figure out a solution or compromise to try and fix whatever problem we’ve been having. I was in love with him and just wanted to make him happy. 

It took me a lot of years, a really long time, to finally draw line and decide that I was done changing myself to try to make him happy. The problem with that was I no longer knew who I was. I had to learn who I was all over again. In truth, I’m still figuring out who I am. See even though I decided to stop changing myself for other people I’m still the people pleaser.  I still avoid conflict and I still like everybody to be happy.

I’m not sure quite what emotion I feel when I look back at all the years I’ve changed and just done whatever I could to make him happy and realize that he never really did the same. Anger? Sadness? Confusion? Sure, you know lives changed.  We got married, became parents, got better jobs and we moved in and out of houses. Those life events changed us but personality traits and behavior? That stuff never really changed for him. 

Why are we where we are then? When I was young, I thought it was just normal ups and downs of a relationship. It wasn’t until after we were married with children and after a bout with depression that I considered the idea that there was no making him happy. That the problem wasn’t me.