A narcissist will calmly step over any boundary that you create with a smile. If he can’t step over it he’ll ask you to move it just a tiny bit. He’ll tell you not to be unreasonable. Pretty soon your boundary will have a doorway and a welcome sign on it.
The master manipulator wins again.
I have written satire since high school. I blame Mad Magazine, Monte Python, and Iconoclast, an underground newspaper in Dallas in the 1970s. Writing has always helped me to bring my feelings into the open, look at them, and even find some issues I didn’t know were there.
As a homeschooling mom I can’t tell you how many times I read If You Give a Mouse a Cookie. I guess it got into my head because one day when I was especially frustrated I found myself banging on my keyboard and when I was done this poem was on the page.
If You Give Your Ex An Inch, He’ll…
If you give your ex an inch he will take a mile and then ask
If you have any shoes that he can borrow because his are now worn.
When you give him the shoes he will realize that there is a hole in his socks and he will
Ask you for a new pair.
As he is putting the socks on he will see a blister (caused by taking the mile)
And ask for a Band-Aid.
When he puts the Band-Aid on his foot he will remember that he needs to mail a letter to his lawyer
And he will ask for a stamp.
Once it is stamped he will want the keys to your car because his was repossessed and he needs to
Go to the post office.
Once he has your car he will drive to your house and walk in like he owned the place. Which will remind him that he
Left a book he wanted to read and he will go through your bookshelves looking for it.
Although he can’t find the book he is looking for he will find a book on horses
And that will remind him that there are saddles in the barn that he can pawn.
While he is in the barn he will see the tools and take them, too.
Because after all, it was his house at one time and he considers it his right.
When he goes to the pawn shop in your car to pawn your stuff he will see
A toy ship
Which will remind him he wants to go on a cruise despite the fact that the kids need clothes and
Camp money (which he can’t afford to help you with.)
While he is on the cruise he will realize that he hasn’t bothered to contact the kids in months
So afterward he will come to your house and walk inside like he owned the place
And when you set up a boundary he will ask to step an inch over it…
And if you give him an inch…
Disclaimer: Any resemblance to any person, alive or dead, is purely coincidental. This work is purely fictional and is meant as satire only. Feel free to link to it but please do not copy it to your own blog, email, or website. (c) 2011 Marye Audet
Just say no! After a while he’ll get the hint. Image Courtesy of Flickr's Creative Commons, User: boltron
You Laugh But…He Leaps Boundaries With A Single Bound
Reading that always makes me smile. It is a little over the top but when you’ve been in a relationship with a narcissist you realize pretty quickly that no matter how many boundaries you put up they are going to be stepped over. Narcissists don’t have boundaries.
We’ve all experienced it.
Boundaries seem to be more of a challenge than a detriment to a narcissist. There is a part of them that cannot be told no without responding, oh, we’ll see about that!
If I had understood that principle decades ago I would never have dealt with celibacy in my marriage. I would have just always told him no which would have ensured constant sex. It’s just another one of those twisted things that you deal with when you are married to a narcissist. After a while you stop setting healthy boundaries because you are tired of having to defend them.
Pretty soon you find that you don’t have any boundaries with anyone because you no longer feel like you are important enough to have them – your space is not valuable enough to defend. You learn that you can’t say no and soon you are resentful because everyone pulls your strings and you feel like a marionette.
Once you are in that mode it is really difficult to stop and turn around.
Forever and Ever, Amen
I struggle with boundaries but not as much as I used to. Oddly enough it is much easier to defend my boundaries with everyone except my ex-husband. You’d think that he, of all people, would be on my Go-To-Hell list but he’s not. I get shaky, sick to my stomach, and can’t think straight when I have to deal with him. My counselor at the VA hospital called it PTSD (post-traumatic stress disorder) and told me that it wasn’t unusual in these types of relationships.
I had to go to court a few weeks ago and I thought my lawyer was ready to give me a Xanax IV. She reminded me that I didn’t have to talk to him or even look at him if he was there (he wasn’t – big surprise) but I still looked like I was waiting to be taken to the gas chamber. I am so used to backing down and giving him his way that standing up to his crap takes a physical toll on me. I came home and had to take the rest of the day off. I was shaken because I was afraid that he would shatter my boundaries, which is totally silly because he can’t.
I’ve found that was really has helped me the most is giving in to my feelings and letting my lawyer and my husband decide how to handle things for me. Someday I may be able to make those decisions and defend those boundaries on my own but for now I am learning to allow myself to be helped in areas I am weak.
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Lead Image Courtesy of Flickr's Creative Commons, User: Lara Cores