The First Cut is the Deepest Part 3

Aunt Alex’s Army has a dry-out tank.

Let me explain. A portion of the emotionally generous population (that would be us, Friends) have narcissistic toads as parents (that would be Fake-Mom and Destructo-Dad; hey, let’s call them as we see them). This messes with the kids’ boundaries, because from birth the tykes try to bond with the toad parents in a normal, healthy way, and the psycho parents will have none of it. They use and abuse, just like all other narcissists. The boundaries get bent. And for some emotionally generous kids, along with this can come a craving.

That craving — it’s for the love and bonding of the parents, and for little kids it’s very healthy. Bonding with your parents increases your chances as a growing and developing human. Narcissistic parents fail pathetically at bonding and completely let the kids down. Then the kid grows up, and in reality the parents become essentially obsolete. But — the primal craving lingers. And the boundaries are bent. Hello, recipe for disaster.

Guess how the cravings are fed? Not with healthy relationships, because the cravings are for the love and bonding of the actual parents. You guessed it. With relationships with people who sense that craving, AND the emotional generosity, and who swoop in for the kill. Toads. And narcissists. And assclowns. Oh, my!

This is critical: THE CRAVINGS ARE NOT YOU. They’re SEPARATE and APART from you, an unwelcome stow-away and a relic from a horrible childhood. They’re scars that flare from time to time. They’re not a disease, or a personality trait, or a weakness. Those cravings are just old aches from war wounds, wounds suffered in the battles for health and normalcy when you were a little child. Old aches from old scars.

Fair enough, but sometimes those cravings are nurtured and nourished by modern romantic narcissists into full-blown misery and trauma, when the toads play on all this old stuff in your head and heart to their own advantage (which they all do). The cravings become large and looming, sore and ravenously hungry. What then?

Then, it’s off to the dry-out tank with you. Those cravings are NOT an addiction. But it works to treat them like one, and the battle can be just as hard. A narcissist lures and taunts actively and with full voice, like a glass of wine passively and quietly lures an alcoholic.

Some people have such a rough time with this craving, that Aunt Alex is going to build a dry-out tank. This will be a closed and private support group to supplement any current support groups or recovery help a person uses, where we only deal with the cravings, 12-step fashion. Dropping the defenses. Admitting this isn’t the way you want to live. Focusing on that first cut. Reviewing how you got here, building the boundaries, and taking full control over your own narcissist-free future. Marching on toward management of the cravings, not toward trying to pretend they don’t exist. Virtual coffee, cider and fresh doughnuts will be served.

And it’ll go like this:
“Hi, my name is Alex, and I have cravings.”
“HI, ALEX!”

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4 Comments

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4 responses to “The First Cut is the Deepest Part 3

  1. e

    I think this whole dynamic is exactly what happened to me. My super self absorbed parent, oblivious to their children’s needs growing up. The N swoops into my life and got his tentacles so far into my head and heart that I did not want to live after the D&D happened. I am actually fighting myself to give a new kind and considerate man in my life, one who represents the possibility of a healthy relationship, a real chance. It’s actually something I’m struggling with, because as you said there is this strange craving.

  2. Case

    I can’t even imagine NOT craving, NOT chasing that elusive love. I feel it every minute of every day lately. I know how I got here and I recognize all of the boundary issues and do everything in my power to change them…but when will the craving stop? Insiteful writing, Alex. Thank you!

  3. The craving doesn’t stop, but once we make a routine out of recognizing what it really is and managing it like any other primal craving, it gets a whole lot easier. Fighting it or denying it just makes it worse. We just sort of give in to the discomfort and let ourselves feel it, without giving in to the craving itself. More on that, coming up……

  4. Meredith

    The cravings are very powerful and are what have been undermining my ability to comprehend and get over being summarily dumped by someone who had cast such a spell over me and made me believe that our bond was something true, deep and everlasting. I know now that it was all meaningless to him and that he is nothing but a selfish, callous, shallow cad, but somehow I can’t chase away these feelings of intense desire for his company and for his touch–and the utterly foolish glimmers of hope that maybe, just maybe, he actually still does have feelings for me and misses me as much as I miss him. I do feel like an addict (I was so blissful for two years having him in my life) and that I need some sort of radical rehab.

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