Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Covert interrogation

I have visited FOO for a short time. I could control the situation quite well, until I was getting ready to leave. I remember standing at the front door, suddenly 'waking up' to openly talking about very private details of my relationship with DB and our current situation. I have no clue how I got there, especially because I was focusing on not to talk about anything personal with NM.

What I remember that she tried to corner me alone a few times while I was there, suddenly asking about how our relationship was going, and I clearly remember ignoring these questions altogether.

How did I get in the position of unvoluntarily spilling the beans? It always happens when I 'black out' (I suppose I am dissociating then).

I know that when I was living with NM, she was never satisfied with her very long and very painful interrogation and torture processes with me, until she knew literally everything about me and my day she was interested in, including all my feelings, thoughts, minor details such as the pencil color I was using, what I ate for lunch, and everything about bowel movements, etc.

I know that I should somehow detect this dissociative phase before it happens, because after I'm in it, I don't even notice until the discussion takes some abhorrent turn that snaps me out of it.

I know that this mechanism was formed by me, at that time when it was a working method for protecting my life and my sanity, but now I do not need it anymore. I just don't know how to get rid of it.

I feel disgusted and embarrassed. I feel angry at myself for being too weak and falling in the same trap again. I feel angry at NM for doing this to me.

Note to self: her tactic is always to isolate me first and then attack. She very rarely does this when there is anyone around.

I have again realized, that I am not alert enough yet to stay alone with her in the same room. I am getting better, but in the end, I still lose the battle sometimes, always when I am alone with her. I don't want that. I don't want to stay alone with her. I wish I could ask DB to never ever leave my side, not even for a second, when NM is around. I'm unsure whether I should 'do this alone' and train myself to endure, or whether it is a reasonable thing to ask.

Another thing I have noticed though, is how badly she wants to see DB. I don't know the motives but I do feel a red flag waving each time she mentions that we should really really visit her together.


  1. My NM also corners me. She doesn't interrogate me as much, but that is when she unleashes all her depressive and gossipy stories that make me miserable. I have asked my husband to stick with me most of the time (if not all) and that I do not desire "alone" time with her if possible. With his N-mother, I do not like to be alone with her AT ALL. This is also when she pounces and with her, he is never to leave me. So, I don't think it is unreasonable, especially while you are trying to get a hold of this, to ask your DB to stick by your side.
    I think her wanting to see your DB is a red flag too. Keep your eyes open. And I wouldn't leave him alone with her either!

  2. Oh, my gosh. I'm not crazy for thinking my NM wants every single tiny detail.

    How I changed this:

    Created a plan.

    I thought I could handle it if I was aware. I was wrong. I had to develop a plan and practice it until it was a new habit to override the old habit of not protecting myself. My friends helped me practice. What I ended up doing: It's uncomfortable at first moving from room to room with her tailing me, but I'm protecting me. Bathroom is a good last resort. Yes, NM even looks around to make sure we're alone.

    Jessie is right, don't leave your DB alone with her either. My NM would flirt with any man who visited, including my boyfriends.

    You're not crazy, and it isn't easy. Keep fighting for you.

  3. Respectfully re DB: you "..don't know the motives.." ahh, YEAH. You *do*, Scatha. She wants to get "DB" on her "side."
    Another example of the Recruitment Campaign. As you know, any "conversation" with there freaks is an INTERROGATION.
    So, yeah, you do know. And that knowledge will inform your response and thinking. You embody many, many human qualities, but you're no dummy.
    Mon Dieu, is this not a haul?!! ;)

  4. Scatha, Don't beat yourself up for being unable to overcome a lifetime of conditioning in the blink of an eye. We have all let our guard down and reverted to old patterns.

    In AA we aim for "progress not perfection" and I have seen a lot of progress in your recent posts.

    Judy's right about having a plan. One of my favourite plans was to time my visit so that it would be extremely short. Fortunately, my NPs operate on a very tight and predictable schedule. For instance, they nap at precisely two each day with no variance to accommodate their "beloved" daughter who has driven for an hour in order to visit. Bang...they're going for their nap so I HAD to leave. What a shame!

    Of course, it's even better now that I NEVER call or visit!

  5. Thank you all for your comments and reassurance. I do see my progress and I value myself for it. Sometimes I wish I could be perfect instantly, but you are right, Mulderfan. Progress, not perfection.

    I want to protect myself and those I love. And also, to focus on MY life, instead of NM's.

    Eyes open, and practice. My next step is no contact for at least a week, again.

  6. I agree that the pattern is always the same. I found the way to stop it was to disrupt it before it starts. I am never alone with my mother. If I catch myself letting my guard down the tiniest bit it is time to leave. I remind myself that I am not talking to a normal healthy person. My theory is my NM doesn't like her own life so wants to step into mine. Boundaries is a protection for you. You are doing great making progress.

  7. Look how far you have already come! Overcoming the kind of mindfuck you have been subjected to takes a bit of time. You are closer and closer to being AWAKE when it happens.

    Is there a word your mother uses a lot? Maybe you can meditate on that word, making that a trigger for a different response from you. Maybe THAT can be the word that wakes you UP! Just a thought.

  8. Your choice of phrase "covert interrogation" was a good "hook" - that's the exact search phrase I typed in and I arrived here. Having checked out only your "Characteristics of Narcissistic Mothers" link not only did bells start to ring, but whistles started to blow, canon started to fire and gongs were struck. No wonder my curriculum vitae has been so strange.


Comments are welcome!