Life Beyond Narcissistic Abuse

“We are retraining our brains to heal what they’ve been through, what they were wired to do when we had no choice.” 

Charlotte Beaty Thigpen

Hello my online Family! I wanted to share some things with you and to offer you encouragement.

Because I’ve had so much time on my hands, I have been working on cleaning and organizing my home. Today it was paperwork day, Ugh!

I was making amazing progress, throwing things out left and right and shredding things as needed. Then it hit me, I came across the folder from my divorce. The folder that contained all of the legal documents and notes I had taken during that time. Whoa!

A little backstory, I was married to an alcoholic narcissist for 12 years. We had two children and when they were 9 and 11, I filed for divorce. We, meaning myself and my boys, simply couldn’t handle it anymore. I will spare you all of the details, but leaving became not only an option, but a necessity. 

Leaving was hard and trying to work with a narcissist in this type of situation, is difficult at best. As was he, difficult the whole time. He was non compliant and threatening throughout the entire process.

Finding this folder tonight brought back so many unhappy memories attached to some intensely stressful times. Also in this folder were the two restraining orders that I had to file on behalf of my children.

While we initially shared joint custody and placement, the time came where I had to have each child removed from his home and was granted full custody each time for each of my sons. Again, I’ll spare you the details.

I’ll be honest, I cried tonight, and I cried hard. I cried for what we all had to go through, but also, because going through all of that brought me to the good place that I am in now. 

My children are now 26 and 24. They are at different points in their relationship with their father, but they both understand who he is. They understand, not because I ever, ok rarely, spoke badly of him, but because they have matured enough and have been figuring it out along the way. 

I’m sharing this with you today, you, whoever you may be, that needs to hear it, so that you can have some hope. If you’re going through a divorce or attempting to leave a narcissist, there is light at the end of the dark tunnel you are staring down right now. Have hope.

Whomever the narcissist in your life is or was, I want you to know that healing is possible. A meaningful and purpose filled life is possible post narcissist, I am living proof of that.

Has it been easy, no. It has required me to take some long hard and emotional looks at myself. Yes, you read that correctly. I had to look at myself and seek to understand why I made the choices that I did and admit to myself that I no longer wanted to continue making the same mistakes I had been making with regards to relationships.

When I started to understand why, part of that why being from a childhood abandonment wound, and of course part of it from being with a narcissist for so long, I recognized myself. I recognized who I no longer wanted to be, not because I was bad or flawed, but because who I was, was formed early on in my life and I had some retraining to do.

So, I’m in training too, here with all of you. We are retraining our brains to heal what they’ve been through, what they were wired to do when we had no choice in the matter.

We now have the necessary information regarding complex trauma. I’ve been taking the courses offered by Linda and have been with the group for about a year and a half now, making great strides. Am I healed, no. Healing takes time, but it is possible.

I am here, ready and willing to do the work necessary to be my best authentic self and I feel privileged to be amongst all of you. Whether you know it or believe it, you all help me heal with each post you share and with each comment you write. Thank you!

Peace and much love to you all.

Charlotte
#togetherwecan

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