The demands of my narcissist were draining. His needs gradually dominated much of a day in two ways. Before I knew it, half of my time was spent responding to text, e-mails, and calls, the other half wondering what I had done wrong. We could never make plans because it served as a way for him to frustrate, and control me. He would say “I can’t plans with you, because if I don’t follow though your will go crazy.” This idea of “you will go crazy…” is the first of many narcissistic mantras to justify the inevitable end, he is already planning. (I have to remember that my narcissist started this relationship by planning the end of it, from the first hello.) Why? Because narcissists are mentally ill.
This continuous inability to commit to plans because of the projected on to me ” I will go crazy, if plans don’t work out,” was one of the reasons I felt like I was living in a crazy haze.. What did going crazy mean to him? If I noticed, and mentioned that our plans did not work out…I was acting crazy! As a result of this ongoing frustration, I tried to end the relationship time and again. It was at the point when I had said enough, he would promise to make plans and follow though. Again, I found myself having the same conversations. I would say “Hey you said, and promised that we were going to do this or that.” He would say, “You’re crazy, I never said that we were going to do this or that.” After a time I really began to question my sanity. (This is known in the world of pop-psychiatric lingo as “gas- lighting”. I will talk more about this in a later blog). It was like a slow corrosive acid drip into my brain. In turn, I spent huge amounts of mental energy trying to understand what was happening in the relationship. As a result, I neglected other parts of my life. My family, house, bills, work, friends all suffered as the collateral damage of my involvement with this man. I had to be honest and make a fair accounting of all the things I have neglected. I made an action plan to make good on all ignored aspects of my life. Each day, I gave myself an hour for paper work. I gave myself another hour for long overdue house cleaning. I scheduled an hour to get caught up with friends I had ignored. I made an hour for writing and so on. This process was difficult, but rewarding.
Did your narcissist suggest that you are crazy or acting crazy? Make a list of all the times he directly or indirectly tried to tell you that you were crazy. In addition, make a list of all the collateral damaged areas of your life. Try to list small incremental steps to move yourself back into alignment. For example; today organize office. Tomorrow invite a friend you might have neglected out for coffee. Keep your journal active. Do something to start reclaiming your life. Notice that you are more in tune with the conciseness of the day, not lost in the crazy haze.