Divorce and PD Zombie Apocalypse

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bright_new_day

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Divorce and PD Zombie Apocalypse
« on: March 10, 2016, 08:48:28 PM »
I feel pretty confused and overwhelmed. I'm separated from my husband (15 years together, separated for a year) and in individual therapy. Not only do I think my H has NPD, but also my father, my brother, my mother (also BPD), ex boy-friends, professors, bosses etc. (This viewpoint is supported by my therapist, who says the behavior traits are there, though she can't diagnose others). All of these people seem pretty benign compared to the man with whom I had a strong emotional connection during my separation - an extreme personality disorder (NPD, maybe BPD or sociopath?) who I felt used me as a supply, discarded me, and is now cruelly using the silent treatment while resuming his high adrenaline fun with his harem. Sadly, I felt addicted to him - he was the most fascinating and charismatic person I've ever know, and I have been close to many magnetic men. In recovery, I've done CODA therapy this past year for my codependent traits, somatic therapy for my brain, and I realize most of my close girl friends, who are very empathetic and kind, had moms with mental illness/PDs and are quite codependent themselves in their marriages too. So I haven't had many healthy role models.

It is like I've awoken in the zombie apocalypse of personality disorders! Do I have any close relationships with any "nons" (meaning not codependent too)? I think my therapist is one of the only truly healthy individuals I know. That is sad! I've lived an academically and professionally successful life, but now in my 40s, I'm really rebuilding it all.

The good part is that I've awoken. I'm working on my self esteem, my boundaries, recalibrating my PTSD brain, rebuilding my sense of self, engaging more as a "present" mother. All of that is on track.

My question is this. I've had so much loss as the veil of PDs has been lifted in my life. I see the abandonment, the lack of empathy or pretend emotions, the contempt, the resentment I've endured and explained away as "normal" or "I can handle it." I've pulled back from many people this past year realizing "they aren't safe" or truly supportive of the real me. It has been isolating to lose so many people. I just realized the woman I thought was my best friend, is also very unreliable and many of the irratic and "mean" things she did that I brushed under the rug are in fact quite BPD.

With all of this loss and disconnection, sometimes I think I am the crazy one. Could they all be normal and it is just me? As I've pulled back from my parents over their neglect of me in childhood, now my husband is turning on the charm with them, I fear for their money. (I told him once I was sorry I wasn't more supportive of him during his depression and he said "I'm just sorry I signed that prenup!"). It is unreal to wake up from one's false/coping self into a place of better mental health, but to see how isolating that is for me to leave behind the world of exciting, addicted, charming, yet unempathetic and manipulative PD people. I haven't met many healthy new friends yet so I'm really feeling alone.

The strangest part is that I miss my H to a degree. He was a sweet person, but became a parasite and lived off of me, stopped working, smoked pot all the time, and became irritable around me and our daughter as his sense of self collapsed. But though he was a parasite, undermined my accomplishments, and mocked me with his sarcasm, he was never physically or verbally abusive. Compared to my parents and this last man I was close to (all who had short fuses and mean streaks), my H seems not-so-unhealthy. And despite it all, our emotional bond is still there, though I often feel I'm being played by him.

Oh, so confusing.

I'm trying to stand my ground and divorce him, but I just want reassurance that a person who has been so surrounded by pwPDs can find and interact (and some day fall in love) with healthy people. I do hope so. Anyone else go through this surreal experience of feeling you only know PDs?
« Last Edit: March 10, 2016, 09:00:34 PM by bright_new_day »

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Sunny

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Re: Divorce and PD Zombie Apocalypse
« Reply #1 on: March 11, 2016, 01:24:32 AM »
Well, I don't get out  much :) but I do feel that I have learned to sniff out PD traits in my family members. Shaming me for not hosting major holidays after doing so for 18 years...and now going through a divorce...My dad insisting all of the sibs fly 2,500 miles to be with him during treatments for a serious illness rather than him moving to us (I flew across the country on my own dime 5x in 6 months while working and raising a teen!!)...my boss was unsympathetic to my plight with probable PD but very ill dad....

So  yes, I can relate...but I feel there are varying degrees of PD, and I hope to better understand what I can tolerate and what I cannot, and put stronger boundaries in place and see who is left. Also to get involved in activities that don't tend to attract PDs (if I can figure out what those are...) I used to sing choral works for example, and that is a humbling, uplifting experience. Will keep ya posted, but I don't think your experience is unusual these days. Many warm thoughts your way, the good news is you are healing and getting stronger!! ((Sunny))

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October99

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Re: Divorce and PD Zombie Apocalypse
« Reply #2 on: March 13, 2016, 10:47:02 PM »
I woke up a few months ago to more mental illness and PD in my life than I could have imagined. I have children showing signs that scare me.

Is your stbx also dependent PD? He sounds like my H but I doubt my H is a NPD. My therapist and I think my H is avoidant and dependent. Our son has ocd and I might too as well as H. I think my older brother is NPD now and my dad likely cluster C. My eyes are open to view from a different perspective now. Oddly freeing and frightening.

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bright_new_day

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Re: Divorce and PD Zombie Apocalypse
« Reply #3 on: April 07, 2016, 10:52:43 PM »
Also to get involved in activities that don't tend to attract PDs (if I can figure out what those are...) I used to sing choral works for example, and that is a humbling, uplifting experience.

Great idea to get involved in activities that don't attract PDs. Thank you for your reply and your support. I'm glad to know I'm not alone. Already, a few weeks after posting my initial comment, I feel more relaxed and optimistic about the future.

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bright_new_day

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Re: Divorce and PD Zombie Apocalypse
« Reply #4 on: April 07, 2016, 11:00:30 PM »

Is your stbx also dependent PD? ... My eyes are open to view from a different perspective now. Oddly freeing and frightening.

This dependent PD is new to me but useful and seems very true for both my [separated] husband and  his sister. For example, if I were to tell him "let's meet 30 minutes later than planned" in NYC he would be lost. "What will I do for 30 minutes?" would be his response and I'd find that so strange - what a gift to have 30 minutes of free time to yourself in New York City, especially when you can plan ahead a bit. Plus his sister still lives with their mother (who cooks, cleans, shops, even vacuums her room) and this sister is in her late 50s (never married). So this is useful for me to explore. Thank you.

I also like your line about your "eyes are open to view from a different perspective now. Oddly freeing and frightening." So true!! Finally life is starting to settle down now that I've adjusted to the new lens of "PDs Everywhere!" I feel more free ... and hopeful.

Thanks for your response!

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FinallyPeace

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Re: Divorce and PD Zombie Apocalypse
« Reply #5 on: April 08, 2016, 01:28:54 PM »
I'm scared a little, too, about dealing with any furture PDs in my life.  There are so many that I start to feel crazy.   :stars:

It makes you just want to wall yourself off, love animals and never deal with another human being again. :sly:
"Behind the smile, a hidden knife!"
― Ancient Chinese saying describing passive-aggressive behavior
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