11 Jan The Narcissist
When you use the term Narcissist with your spouse or even suggest therapy, in their mind, you just hit Ofcom’s highest-ranking swear word in order of offensiveness. Suddenly there is pandemonium, a heightened state of consciousness as their ominous super-soldier serum kicks in creating a distortion in time, then all hell breaks loose!
After all the exhaustive years of civil war with your spouse, whom you swore an oath to live and die with, you develop the willpower to remove yourself from the doom-and-gloom and choose a new lease of life without due notice – now your spouse wants you dead.
In your primitive years, you tried everything imaginable to help rescue your spouse, but the life jacket was of little or no avail. Even a Steve Rogers’ group therapy session can’t rescue you from your spouse and the only option you have left now is to run…!
You make peace with enemies, not your friends. Your partner may not be the enemy, but when you find yourself in a hostile situation, a volatile partner, liable to change rapidly and unpredictably, is not your friend.
The following story by Esa portrays a world in which co-dependent experiences living with a pathological partner, and how spiritual affliction is mistaken for a personality disorder.
Everything I encountered with my wife from the beginning of our marriage transpired as supernatural. Someone had cast malevolent magic to cause separation between us. I had read all about its damaging effects, all the tell-tale signs were apparent, that explained my wife’s bad behaviour and why she felt no guilt for all the horrible things she said and did to me.
The first year of our marriage had us battling demons relentlessly – I never actually got to know my wife. I knew it would take time for her to heal and that I would always be there no matter what. I had no clue what was going to happen tomorrow, or how things were going to work out but that didn’t matter.
Over the years we had our quarrels as couples do, my wife would always win because she wouldn’t know when to quit. As time went on, her yelling and cursing became more hurtful, it would go on and on for what seemed like forever, and then the reminders would follow, that I should be grateful for having a wife who cooked and cleaned for me. Even though I can cook, clean, and do my laundry!
Had I achieved momentary victory, imagining I had somehow succeeded in stabilising our relationship, she would launch into her typical odious rant and play the religion card. “Allah will punish you! He will deal with you…!” She would hasten to the prayer mat, weeping to Allah, complaining about me. It put fear in my heart, perhaps I was wrong, maybe I wasn’t so grateful. She would even separate her bed from me to make it clear how upset she was.
I should consider myself lucky to have a wife who cooks, cleans, and looks after me.
She often reminded me how Umar (radiAllahu anhu) remained silent when his wife contended with him. More the reason why I should patiently persevere as I walk the tightrope, not forgetting the root cause of my wife’s behaviour was due to magic.
It was hopeless reaching out to her family as they would always side with her. Even when she complained to my family, they would believe her narrative. She would later use that against me, assuring me no one in my family liked me. She even convinced community members and leaders that I wasn’t giving her her rights. I was psychologically wounded. I became so withdrawn that I started spending money on anything that would take me back to my childhood memories.
It was a one-way relationship to nowhere. Anything I raised as a concern meant I was stepping out of line so I would have to listen to the same pacifying lull – I should consider myself lucky to have a wife who cooks, cleans, and looks after me. That repetition would remain imprinted on my memory. I would tell people how much I loved my wife who meant the world to me, that she was the best cook, and I am so grateful for everything she does for me, and how lucky I am to have her.
Twelve-years into my marriage, after having three nervous breakdowns, I learned about emotional manipulators, co-dependents & dysfunctional relationships, and everything started making sense. After struggling to believe my reality, I finally came to terms with accepting that my wife suffered from a personality disorder. While all along believing I was still rescuing her from the malevolent magic, I found myself trapped in a toxic relationship married to a malignant narcissist.
To the woman who took my love and pride – because she allowed her hating family to convince her to leave me – I’m doing just fine without you, and realise that when you lose something you think is special to you, God will send something your way much better than what you had.
‘Narcissists live by double standards where they can do and say whatever they please and You can’t. You are expected to live by high moral values and guess what – they aren’t! And when, and if, you finally try to assert your rights, or decide to leave, then they play the victim and you are the villain.’ (Quote: Maria Consiglio)
Photo courtesy of Maxime Horlaville | Unsplash.com