Sunday, March 04, 2007

Critical Errors

Below is a compilation of what victims of narcissists list as their 'critical errors'.

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My gut instinct that something was wrong.

Stories that didn't add up, or with different timeframes and characters - 2+2 not adding up.

The patterns forming in his behaviour.

Other people's warnings - believing him when he said they were crazy or jealous.

The difference between what he said what he actually did and believing his lies.

The hatred others had of him.

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Failing to...

Be financially and emotionally free.

Do something about the (scary) financial vulnerabilities of being a 'house wife', not having an occupation.

Have a Plan B when my 'meal ticket' expired.

Impose limits on the amount of abuse we are willing to take.

Communicate quickly and effectively our personal boundaries.

Act effectively when our personal boundary lines have been breached.

Obtain proof of abuse.

Get independent legal counsel and representation.

Recognize and ignore his verbal bait and not controlling myself better and yelling at him.

Realized I was addicted to a painful relationship, and obsessive and craving contact, I wish that I'd gone to a hypnotherapist or someone to get the strength and support to break away.

Instead, I let the insanity go on until I was on the verge of a mental breakdown.

See how emotionally fragile I am.

Acknowledge just how rapidly I could be replaced.

See he really is Mr. Hyde and N-Dip trying to find Dr. Jekyll.

Stay out of the Jerry Springer nightmare of his life, family, Xs, friends, co-workers.

Realize I have my own mental health problems and how that keeps me unhealthily involved with my abuser.

When he stopped caring about me, I stopped caring about myself too.

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I kept thinking...

Every time he raged would be the last time.

There was a certain level of behavior below which he would NOT stoop.

Deep down he really did care.

When the chips were down or I needed him, he would come through.

That if I could just explain how I felt or how his behavior was affecting that me he would see it and care.

I wasn't explaining things right to him to make him understand.

It was my fault.

It was something at work or something he would finally tell me about.

That I would find some kind of closure.

I had to be 'nice' to him.

He would put something back in my 'cup' because I had put so much from him.

That I didn't want to cause a 'scene' and felt I didn't have the right words to properly explain what was happening.

That I could get him 'back on track' somehow.

I could help him, that he needed my help. I did everything for him - he never even asked me, I just offered. Boy, did he see me coming.

I stayed frozen like a deer in headlights.

Underestimating/not admitting, even to myself, what horrible and heartless things s/he is actually capable of.

Improperly assessing the potential for physical danger.

Taking too long to reach 'enough', and making those decisions I wish I'd made sooner.

"I believed him when he said he wanted me to be a stay-at-home mom and he would take care of us."

Trying to rationalize and make sense of the insane endless chaos.

Looking for the litmus test to prove he really was mentally disordered.

Overlooking the early red flags in his statements.

Doubting myself and my assessment of his pathology.

Believing he'd changed.

Minimizing the abuse and focusing on any past 'good' times
Not ending it at the first sign of physical abuse.

Getting involved and married too early.

Not telling people about his abuse because I didn't want people to think poorly of him.

Behaving like my N and treating his target poorly and, wanting to stay out of the situation, failing to provide support when it was needed.

Allowing sex drive to overcome reason.

When you attempt to push a cerebral narcissist into sex or any type of intimacy, and he gets angry...but you still believe that maybe if you can just survive without intimacy it will all work out ok. When you have sex with a somatic narcissist, realize that you are a mere object to him, and yet somehow tell yourself, "Maybe this is healthy??

Fear of loneliness or believing my life wouldn't be better without him.

Wanting the 'package' deal he offered - the luxuries, trappings and lifestyle were too appealing to turn down - the risks seemed acceptable.

Feeling like I was the special one who could finally make him happy.

Feeling sorry for him, jumping in trying to help with his problems when he seemed to be floundering about.

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Failure to self impose No Contact.

Taking him back repeatedly.

The Catch 22 of discussion forums - we learn about No Contact, but N-Dip wanting to (dis)prove the disorder(s) we're seeing is for real. Or even worse, we learn various coping tactics and want to try them out and end up in a predator/victim enmeshment wasting our precious time trying to maneuver a personality disordered person we should be avoiding.

Allowing myself to be singled out for abuse by my N mom.

Not seeing his attempts to isolate me from other people, friends and family.

Buying into his "poor me" routine.

Losing my identity.

Losing my self respect by staying and tolerating what he did.

Believing his lies. Being gullible and naive. Trusting him despite evidence to the contrary.
Wanting to believe he was my soul mate.

Giving in to rages. Not standing up to him and seeing the intimidation.

Not getting my child in therapy.

Underestimating how convincingly persuasive he could be - I took him back against common sense.

Not recognizing the faults within MYSELF that lead me into this situation or lead me to stay in it, or want to return to it. Had I dealt with my issues then, it never would have even happened.

Gaining/losing weight, losing sleep, getting physically ill yet deciding he's worth it.

When you create a fantasy illusion/idealization of him in your mind, just so you don't have to face the fact that he's NOT AT ALL the same as the idealized version you choose to percieve.

When you see signs he's an abuser, but delude yourself into thinking he's not.

Allowing him to run me down or call me degrading names, even "jokingly."

Allowing him to create self doubt and question myself way too much.

Procrastinating instead of making decisions.

I stayed because of the children, thinking I could tolerate it until they were adults.

Seeing the objectification of me as he would tell other people his exciting news about himself - not me.

Ignoring the ticking time bomb of his financial irresponsibility.

I stayed because I felt I had to honour the wedding vows. That was faulty thinking on my part.

I should have sought friendship...not the "spark" or "thrill."

Not having my own 'rainy day' money set aside.

Believing him when he said I was crazy, upset, wrong.

Not respecting, finding, using and realizing my own strengths.

Trying to find some logical reason for his bizarre behaviour.

Not insisting on respect, equal treatment.

Letting him live by double and sometimes triple standards.

Being too forgiving.

Asking HIM for forgiveness, and apologizing for things that weren't even wrong.

Falling for the sob stories and pity parties.

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TAKING THE BAIT!!!! At first it's subtle, hard to recognize. Let them do what they want. They just WANT your reaction. Don't give them the satisfaction. Even if you are upset, don't let them know it. It's what they want. Be upset here. Be upset to your friend. Be upset to your pet. But DO NOT LET THEM SEE IT!!

Accepting his abusive or controlling behaviour so he wouldn't leave me.

Expecting normal responses, clarity and finally closure.

Putting money into someone's hand who even has the slightest chance of doing the wrong thing - I'll never again do that.

Co-mingling ANY assets. I will not do this again, with anybody.

Writing letters to him - I'll never put anything in writing again and telling him anything about myself - only to see him use it cruelly against me.

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Allowing myself (mind, body, spirit) to become so afraid of him -- literally afraid for my life, more afraid than I had the power to muster to fight back and stand like a soldier. I really fell apart and don't EVER want to do that again. I have vowed that *no* human will every make me that fearful again.

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I saw he had a 'dark side' and ignored it!

My most critical error was accepting the second date!!!!

The male gender is used. Your abuser may be female. You are welcome to use this page for non-commercial purposes with creditation/link to our site.