split feelings about M's enabler

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eternallystuck

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split feelings about M's enabler
« on: September 16, 2018, 07:27:34 PM »
Lately I've been having really mixed feelings to my NPD's enabling 'partner' aka another poor soul my mother hijacked to make herself feel less alone :roll:

On one side I feel really genuinely sorry for him. Hes been roped into this horrible messy foo dynamic & he doesn't come from that kind of background so hes a fish out of water. He seems naive and hadn't much experiences with women so wouldn't have many 'signs' to look out for . He wasn't to know what he was entering, especially since she had kids from previous relationships & he was childless. NPD M preyed on him because he is the perfect prey; insecure, timid, submissive & not much going for him.....he is more likely to put up with it because of his age & not bein very confident.. aswell as this she got pregnant to him quick...& he feels obliged to stay to keep his son. He knows she would run havoc if he went up against her. Plus he is the only partner of my M's to stick around & be a father to his child.

On the other side I feel embarrassed how he allows my M to boss him around & talk to him like dirt. How he allows her to talk to her other children like that without intervening at all or having any concern for their health. How hes selfish,  barely speaks & has almost no social skills/manners. How he has no drive in life and is happy to be her minion and allow her to be the breadwinner. And at times I feel a little betrayed..I know from his expressions he knows she is intolerable but he's happy with me taking the flack. And often he will take out his growing turmoil out around me, trying to intimidate me & make me feel I am to blame for how she is becos its not safe to confront her. He also plays up to my scapegoat status, pinning things on me to avoid any aggression from M. At times I think he has began mimicking her to cope & feel he is also toxic now, just in a more passive way. I also feel pretty awkward around him because he has no desire to have a relationship with me & my gc sis..only his son. He is only there for his child. This makes me feel awkward around him, or like i'm some unwanted burden, especially around family holidays.


Does anyone else get these conflicted feelings towards their PD's parents enabler??? Its like im simultaneously feeling sorry for them but also feeling betrayed/angered at the same time!

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Bloomie

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Re: split feelings about M's enabler
« Reply #1 on: September 18, 2018, 10:21:09 PM »
eternallystuck - I honestly would be shocked if you didn't have mixed emotions about your mom's partner. What a messy situation with you as the SG with both of them. It is very hard to respect someone who is hiding behind you and taking things out on you at the same time. Using you as an emotional shield it would seem.  :no:

I have an enbil who sounds very similar to your mother's partner. I did used to feel sorry for him, but over time I have come to see in his relationship with my uPDsil he is as much a part of the dynamic duo of dysfunction and destruction as she is, but somehow manages to present himself as hapless and helpless in the face of it. On further examination he is not hapless or helpless at all. He has found a cozy spot for himself acting the enabler and uPDsil's enforcer at other's expense and I have lost all respect for him as that has become more obvious to me.


Bloomie 🌸
"Manipulation is deception at its highest art form. It is my attempt to make you believe that what is best for me is best for you." Beth Moore

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Starboard Song

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Re: split feelings about M's enabler
« Reply #2 on: September 18, 2018, 10:35:55 PM »
The mixed emotions are entirely natural.

My enabling FIL is similar. I think he may have his own issues, but don't we all? Outside of the work he does to -- in his own words -- "placate" his wife, he is an amiable guy, well within normal tolerances for a human. He's been a steadfast husband to a depressed addict for decades, and remained loyal through thick and thin. Without his dedication, my wife would have grown up in a very broken home, and been much the worse for it. So I am sad for him that this is his lot. He truly doesn't understand why we will no longer play the game of Calvin Ball she has always had us at. And he is terribly lonely.

But I also know that in loyalty to her he has lost all judgment, has behaved as a bully, and has turned his back on two of his three children. At this behavior, I am hurt and angry.

It is an attribute of BPD folks that they struggle to see any gray: others are either all good or all bad. Your ability to hold an enabler in mixed esteem is a sign of your strength and kindness. I encourage you to cherish and respect both of your feelings.

« Last Edit: September 19, 2018, 11:22:48 AM by Starboard Song »
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Healing From Family Rifts, by Mark Sichel
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all4peace

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Re: split feelings about M's enabler
« Reply #3 on: September 18, 2018, 11:20:30 PM »
Yes, I think it's pretty common in these parts to experience this confusion of pity and frustration/disgust. Most of us needed one "safe-enough" parent to survive childhood. It's really painful to come into adulthood and see that the other one really was abusive in their own ways, including neglect or not protecting.

I myself am coming out of a long history of time in DH's family in which I played this role. Let me tell you that even though it looks better than active abuse, it is a problem also.  I'm not victim blaming or self-shaming here, but just pointing out that doing nothing is doing something. I do believe we are all on this planet to live to our healthiest potential, and standing by and allowing abuse to happen, preferring to avoid conflict and be a "peacemaker" is very problematic in its own way.

I'm sorry for how painful this is for you, awkward and uncomfortable, and that there doesn't seem to be a comfortable place of "home" for you in your family.

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eternallystuck

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Re: split feelings about M's enabler
« Reply #4 on: September 22, 2018, 09:56:48 PM »
all4peace you're very right. I think having at least one safe parent can act as a giant buffer to the others abuse

I've never really had a father figure

me & siblings all have different dads, this is the only 1 that has stuck but he only parents his child. Fair enough but M doesn't seem to see how that affects me & GC- we are copped out of a father yet again

Part of me also thinks its a possession thing. M is v possessive, smothering M. I don't think she liked the idea of me having an amicable father figure, it would threaten her sense of control over us. On top of this, if her partner defended me it would collapse their relationship with M.

I've always felt M has very short sighted & impulsive in that dept, it was about her having someone there first, before considering how it would affect her kids or whether they're a suitable father. I think for this reason I have held off kids until I find some1 who is serious about growing a family. Its been very hard having an abusive M & no stable father figure to turn to.