The following is a diary entry that I wrote September 12, 2009.
This entry was written before I made the realization that NMIL
is a Narcissist.
Living Amongst Manipulators
I feel that I should record my thoughts, observations, connections, and ideas (and should have been all along) on DH's manipulative, often destructive relationships. Though I talk to him often about such things, I am usually met with denial, sadness, and at times, anger regarding my assertions. I can fully appreciate his feelings, having experienced many of them myself during two of the most destructive relationships in my life. But, never-the-less, I often respond with frustration and feelings of desperation of my own. It is so, so difficult when someone doesn't see something that is so painfully obvious to me.
Sometimes, I find myself thinking, "Maybe, if I just say it again" or "If I say it a different way" then he'll finally get it. I'm afraid that he doesn't want to "get it" because the result of such understanding is an emotional pain that no one wants to feel. I don't want DH to feel emotional pain in order to make these realizations, but I feel, in my heart-of-hearts, that the pain resulting from his ultimate understanding and acknowledgment will lead to a better, deeper, and healthier life - for DH, first and foremost, but also for his FOC. I have a genuine, but realistic hope, that, because of those realizations, he can make his other relationships more meaningful as well.
I wish to record the events that have transpired so far, as well as my thoughts about them, in regards to DH's family (and, at times, "friends") and their treatment of him...It is my intention to, at a later date, show these things to DH. I fully believe that, someday, he'll be better equipped and more willing to see these events (and people) as they are and not how he wishes they would be.
I'll start from the beginning.
Meeting DH's mother:
1. I recall thinking to myself - "No wonder why DH is a self-described drama queen." His mother, I observed, was the very embodiment of drama. In fact, she used that very word herself to excitedly relate certain events that were unfolding in her 15-year-old daughter's love life. I found her enthusiasm over the drama to be inappropriate, unhealthy, and morally vulgar. She was actively promoting and encouraging unhealthy relationships in her young daughter's life for reasons of exploitation. I do not recall much about said drama (or the circumstances thereof) except that it had something to do with a boy whom SIL was interested in or seeing at the time. My thoughts to SIL on the matter were, essentially that it would be helpful for her if she recognized that this boyfriend was at best, immature, and at worst, down-right abusive, and that she would be much happier and healthier staying away from him. I didn't suffer any illusions that she was actually going to listen to me, but I wanted to tell her that anyway. I dated a lot of schmucks in my day, who had never been worth my time. Anyway, I was thoroughly disgusted with NMIL's response to her daughter's troubling relationships.
2. I would expect a 15-year-old to be texting - I would not excuse it, particularly in the situation we were in, but I would not be surprised by it - what I would not expect would be a 40-something woman to be texting in the same situation. While the four of us, DH, myself, NMIL, and SIL sat in a restaurant in our first-ever meeting, SIL texted away - stopping only to eat and share an occasional quip with her brother. I was appalled that her mother followed suit. Not only did NMIL ignore this rude behavior of her teenage daughter, but she engaged in the same activity herself, thereby reinforcing the negative behavior, while showing her own lack of maturity and respect at the same time. To that, I say, BRAV-FUCKING-O.
My strong thoughts and opinions on texting aside, even if I were a "texter" myself, I would never deem it appropriate or socially acceptable to text during a meal, while dining with people whom I had just met. And so, I found myself having more objections to the behaviors of my NMIL - her level of immaturity was staggering. I saw her attraction to (and stimulation of) drama, as well as her bizarre and inappropriate use of "texting" as two rather obvious signs that this woman was, to put it kindly, socially retarded. And that's my sugar coated version. The truth, straight up, is this: Her "friendship" status with her daughter sickens me (as it did then). I found her to be inexcusably rude, pitiful, and unhealthy...not to mention selfish. I was embarrassed for DH that he had a mother who behaved that way.
A texter himself, DH still had the grace to be embarrassed about his mother's "textual harassment," yet perhaps not the knowledge to see her drama-mongering as such. The fact that he made several comments about his mother and sister's texting habits at the time made me believe that, somewhere in his mind, DH felt uneasy and perhaps even upset by their behaviors.