Smorgasbord Blog Magazine – D. G. Kaye Explores the Realms of Relationships – October 2021 – No Contact – The Breaking Point | Smorgasbord Blog Magazine

 

This month’s Realms of Relationships column is about going ‘No Contact’. Sometimes in life we’re faced with becoming stuck in unhealthy relationships and that can mean anything from enduring an abuser or narcissist, but it can also relate to any unhealthy relationship we allow with someone in our life who demeans us, belittles, demands of us, or shows no interest or compassion for us, yet remain a part of our lives.

 

Smorgasbord Blog Magazine – D. G. Kaye Explores the Realms of Relationships – October 2021 – No Contact – The Breaking Point

 

No Contact – The Breaking Point

 

I write a lot here about difficult relationships, the challenges about them, the symptoms, and I share my experience and my resolutions about handling some of these conflicts. In this issue, I’m going to talk about the No Contact rule.

 

This method is usually a last resort to ending a relationship after several other remedies have been applied without success.

 

When we have struggled with people who hurt, ignore, or harm us, either mentally or physically, and there is no solution left for handling these people, other than continuing to put up with them or creating distance from them wherever we can, sometimes all we can do is go full-blown No Contact. Yes, you can read 100 books on psychology about these issues, but when we reach the last end of the rope where we can no longer endure a toxic relationship, this may become the only option we’re left with to seek peace.

 

So, what is no contact exactly?

 

No Contact means taking a firm stance to remove ourselves from another person’s life or situation. It can often be a difficult process, especially when feelings of guilt intervene, but this is sometimes necessary to bring back sanity and peace. And despite our decision to go through with the process, it can still be difficult. And sometimes, despite our decision to break free, we may still get swept back into that person’s drama. Friend or family, sometimes we just have to let go to save ourselves. No Contact means the relationship is over. This is a self-protective measure we should take when a relationship isn’t just not fulfilling us, but becomes bad for our mental health. It’s a measure that will often entail grieving the loss of that relationship despite our choosing to sever ties with that person.

 

time to leave

 

So what is the process for No Contact?

 

First, we should set our internal boundaries. Once we decide to go No Contact, we must stop filling our minds with the situation and playing the hurt hits over and over in our heads. If we’re at this point in a relationship, it’s time to stop thinking about them, the hurt, the words, the guilt and the pain they’ve caused us, and think about ourselves. When we’ve exhausted every avenue of trying to discuss and fix, and they either don’t see the problem or aren’t interested in repairing anything, it may be time to banish them. Going No Contact is not only a physical action, but a mental one too.

 

Going No Contact means: no phoning, no texting, no engagement on social media or otherwise, no talking, no partaking in events around them. It means staying strong when confronted by those we’ve walked away from and remembering the many reasons why we chose to delete that person from our lives. The object is to remove our presence from their life.

 

Like any loss in life, we may well go through some of the grieving stages, similar to how we do when we lose a loved one. During this process, we may experience mixed emotions such as: I’m a bad person for doing this, I don’t want to make bad blood, I don’t want people to be angry at me. I know this ritual through my own experience. I lived it when I finally had to use it with my mother. And since my husband’s passing, I’ve realized a lot about the people who’ve been a part of my life with ‘new eyes’. One thing I know from experience is that a deep loss of a loved one will forever change you.

 

What can help when we’re weighing the scales about a certain relationship is to write out our feelings. Make a list of the pros and cons of the relationship in question. Look at the good parts and the painful parts. If the painful parts far outweigh the good and you’ve already given the relationship many chances with the same outcome, it may be time to consider this method.

 

letting go

 

Toxic people are manipulative people. They have an inherent knack for knowing how to overpower others. It’s important not to allow these people to define us by manipulating us into feeling obligation or guilt when we attempt to distance ourselves mentally and physically from that person. Going No Contact is often akin to abstaining from a harmful substance like drugs or booze. And just like going through any detox program, we will undoubtedly go through some withdrawal symptoms after removing a person from our lives. And yes, second thoughts, guilt, and remembering some of the better times, may all pop into our heads during the cleansing, but the idea is to remain strong in our resolution for a greater good. In essence, creating No Contact is self-love and for self- preservation. . . Please continue reading at Sally’s Smorgasbord

 

Original Source: Smorgasbord Blog Magazine – D. G. Kaye Explores the Realms of Relationships – October 2021 – No Contact – The Breaking Point | Smorgasbord Blog Magazine

 

©DGKaye2021

 

#BookReview: P S I Forgive You: A Broken Legacy by D G Kaye @pokercubster | Welcome to Harmony Kent Online

I came across a new review for my book, P.S. I Forgive You, from the talented author Harmony Kent, found on her blog. I need not tell any other author here how uplifting it is to come by a lovely surprise when someone takes the time to read our work, write a review and share it on their own blog. A truly wonderful community we all are and once again, I’m stoked that my book touched another person.

 

#BookReview: P S I Forgive You: A Broken Legacy by D G Kaye @pokercubster

Hi everyone. Good news: my long awaited chest x-Ray shows my lungs are clear! Yay! 😁🎉. The issues seem to be down to an overactive immune system, which the new tablets are helping with, plus all the inhalers, lols. I appreciate all of your well wishes and support over these many months.

I owe an apology for not being around online much this last week or so. My first COVID vaccine has hit me hard and left me tired and with headaches. I’m well on the mend, though, and glad I’ve had the first dose.

Today, I have a book review for an author I’ve known and admired for a long time, Debby Kaye. Her honesty and bravery shine through in this book of non-fiction, and I feel it’s one everybody should read >>>

About the Book:

32492158. sy475 Confronted with resurfacing feelings of guilt, D.G. Kaye is tormented by her decision to remain estranged from her dying emotionally abusive mother after resolving to banish her years ago, an event she has shared in her book Conflicted Hearts.

In P.S. I Forgive You, Kaye takes us on a compelling heartfelt journey as she seeks to understand the roots of her mother’s narcissism, let go of past hurts, and find forgiveness for both her mother and herself.

After struggling for decades to break free, Kaye has severed the unhealthy ties that bound her to her dominating mother—but now Kaye battles new confliction, as the guilt she harbors over her decision only increases as the end of her mother’s life draws near.

Kaye once again struggles with her conscience and her feelings of being obligated to return to a painful past she thought she left behind.

 

My Review:

5 star rating

As soon as I saw what this book was about, I had to read it, and I am so pleased I did.

Because of the difficult subject matter, and my own history, I had to take a deep breath before I plunged in. Not only has this writer’s honesty and bravery helped me to understand my parents a little better, it has also shown me precisely what my sister has become. I’d missed that, and this explains so very much.

It is a sad fact of life that, all too often, the victim becomes the perpertrator, unless we have the insight and strength to do something about it. I have long joked that I’m the reverse ‘black sheep’ of my family, and it seems to me that Debby is too. For all our successes, and the miracle of growing into well-adjusted adults in spite of it all, we will never be accepted by a parent who demands that we live their lies, manipulations, and abuses. The same with any sibling who demands the same.

Some lines that resonated with me in particular:

‘A narcissistic mother doesn’t have to be in one’s presence. She can still demand and demean no matter how far away.’

and

‘It is my decision to banish my mother from my life and a resolution to find peace within myself with my decision.’

and

‘[…] if we’re lucky enough to realize the bad, we have the opportunity to steer ourselves in a better direction.’

For a while now, I have struggled to think of what I will do when one or the other of my parents dies. I’m not even sure they would let me know, at this stage. And reading this honest and brave account from D G Kaye has helped me immensely. It has also helped to explain the till-now inexplicable behaviour of my twin sister. She has grown up with emotional neglect, as did I, and has now become a narcissist. This book has helped me to identify why she lives and behaves the way she does.

From my own life, I know how hard it is to go against the grain to become your own person despite your upbringing. It takes work, day by day, to resist some of those unhealthy habits instilled in us as children and to trust our judgements and motives. It takes courage to not give in to the insidious lack of self-esteem with which such adults are often left. The author has overcome much, and I admire her deeply both for her acheivements and for putting her journey into words so that others of us can also be helped.

PS I Forgive You: A Broken Legacy gets a solid and resounding 5 stars from me. A difficult read, but a book everybody should read.

 

***

NOTE ON RATINGS: I consider a 3-star rating a positive review. Picky about which books I give 5 stars to, I reserve this highest rating for the stories I find stunning and which moved me.

5 STARS: IT WAS AMAZING! I COULD NOT PUT IT DOWN! — Highly Recommended.
4 STARS: I WOULD PULL AN ALL-NIGHTER — Go read this book.
3 STARS: IT WAS GOOD! — An okay read. Didn’t love it. Didn’t hate it.
2 STARS: I MAY HAVE LIKED A FEW THINGS —Lacking in some areas: writing, characterisation, and/or problematic plot lines.
1 STAR: NOT MY CUP OF TEA —Lots of issues with this book.


I’d love to hear what you think of this review. Thanks for stopping by 🙂

 

Original Source: #BookReview: P S I Love You: A Broken Legacy by D G Kaye @pokercubster | Welcome to Harmony Kent Online

©DGKaye2021

 

Sunday Book Reviews – Featuring Book Reviews for D.G. Kaye Books

Welcome to my Sunday Book Review. Once again I haven’t finished my latest read, but I am beaming times three today because first, Sally Cronin featured a review she’d written a few years ago for my book – Words We Carry, at her Smorgasbord Cafe.

What a treat to have my book reviewed and featured by Sally chosen from her archived series of reviews from the past. So I was thrilled to share that review with you here today and had already drafted the share scheduled to post today. But last night I was visiting blogs and came across Lauren at Baydreamerwrites’ blog and was  beaming out loud when I read a beautiful post featuring two more reviews for two other books of mine – Conflicted Hearts and Twenty Years: After “I Do”. I was so humbled and elated to learn Lauren had read and reviewed two of my books and then generously shared her reviews for my books on her blog.

So today, I’m a little ‘chuffed’ as my British friends would say, and a lot over the moon, sharing three reviews here today from Sally and Lauren.

 

All reviews are golden and the beauty is they’re evergreen ~DGKaye

 

Smorgasbord Posts from My Archives – Past Book Reviews – #Non-Fiction Words We Carry by D.G. Kaye

 

Welcome to the series where I will be sharing a selection of book reviews I have posted in the last few years. I would like to take the opportunity to showcase books that I have enjoyed and their authors and if you have not read the books, I hope it will encourage you to check them out.

Today I am sharing a review I posted in 2017 –  The Words We Carry by D.G. Kaye 

 

About Words We Carry

“I have been a great critic of myself for most of my life, and I was darned good at it, deflating my own ego without the help of anyone else.”

What do our shopping habits, high-heeled shoes, and big hair have to do with how we perceive ourselves? Do the slights we endured when we were young affect how we choose our relationships now?

D.G. takes us on a journey, unlocking the hurts of the past by identifying situations that hindered her own self-esteem. Her anecdotes and confessions demonstrate how the hurtful events in our lives linger and set the tone for how we value our own self-worth.
Words We Carry is a raw, personal accounting of how the author overcame the demons of low self-esteem with the determination to learn to love herself.

 

My review for Words We Carry 2017

Words We Carry is packed with the accumulated knowledge, wisdom, survival tips and strategies from someone who went through difficult and unhappy childhood and teen years.

I think it is fair to say that most of us are less than confident about our body shape, and that is particularly tough when you can no longer use the excuse of puppy fat, and your friends are heading out in slinky black dresses and high-heeled shoes.

Unfortunately, not all mothers are born with the nurturing gene and as soon as you become competition, there is an opportunity to reinforce your lack of self-esteem with carefully chosen and cutting words.  I would like to think that the experiences that D.G. Kaye describes were rare, but I am afraid that after counselling women on their health and weight for twenty years, the story is very familiar.

Those harmful words from those who are supposed to love us, are the ones we carry throughout our lifetime, unless we can find a way to dilute their power and replace them with affirmations of a much more positive nature.

D.G. Kaye describes her strategies to claim her own identity, build her self-esteem and evolve from the ugly duckling that she had been made to feel she was, into a swan. This involved a makeover in a number of departments, including wearing high heels at all times and over every terrain, and standing out from the crowd with her now signature titian hair colour. She also developed a healthy, outgoing personality and independence that led her to discover groups of people who accepted and embraced her as a friend.

In the second section of the book Kaye looks at the impact this early negative conditioning had on her relationships, including romances with older men whose different approach to dating and expectations provided a more secure environment. Unfortunately, having entered one serious and long-term relationship, echoes of the verbal abuse that she received as a child and teenager, threatened to undo all the hard work that she had accomplished. Thankfully she went on to find happiness and empowerment with someone who appreciates all that she has become.

Kaye looks at issues such as the difference between Alone vs. Lonely, Negativity and Self-Worth, Forming Healthier Relationships, and importantly Exposing our Personality Through the Internet. All the chapters provide commonsense strategies to overcome a lack of self-confidence, and I do think that women and men in their 50s and 60s, will definitely be able to draw parallels to Kaye’s own experiences.

Whilst I recommend this memoir/self-help book to men and women of my age, I also think that it should be read by all mothers whose daughters are heading into their teens and beyond. It might just remind them of how fragile their child is when about to face the outside world, and that there are enough external challenges to be overcome, without encountering them in the place they should feel safe.

It is also a book for young women who are struggling with weight issues and those who feel that they are not as attractive as their friends, or who feel that they are somehow going through something never experienced before.

There is no reason to reinvent the wheel. By reading this they might take strength in knowing that this is an age old problem, and that they can change the narrative and write their own story.

Read all the reviews and buy the book: Amazon US – and: Amazon UK

 

Visit Sally’s post and blog:

https://smorgasbordinvitation.wordpress.com/2020/11/04/smorgasbord-posts-from-my-archives-past-book-reviews-non-fiction-words-we-carry-by-d-g-kaye/comment-page-1/#comment-406386

 

 

Book Reviews: Conflicted Hearts and Twenty Years After “I Do” by D.G. Kaye

 

Books by D.G. Kaye Nonfiction

D.G. Kaye’s Author Page – http://www.amazon.com/author/dgkaye7

 

I am excited to introduce you to D.G. Kaye today, or better known as Debby. I have followed Debby’s blog for several years now and it has been a joy to not only read her amazing, witty, and honest writing, but to also get to know her as a new friend who has a big heart. She has written many books, so I pulled two out of the hat: Conflicted Hearts first, then Twenty Years After “I Do.”

 

 

 

Blurb:

A Lifetime of guilt — What does it take to finally break free?

Somehow I believed it was my obligation to try to do the right thing by her because she had given birth to me.

Burdened with constant worry for her father and the guilt caused by her mother’s narcissism, D.G. Kaye had a short childhood. When she moved away from home at age eighteen, she began to grow into herself, overcoming her lack of guidance and her insecurities. Her life experiences became her teachers, and she learned from the mistakes and choices she made along the way, plagued by the guilt she carried for her mother.

Conflicted Hearts is a heartfelt journey of self-discovery and acceptance, an exploration of the quest for solace from emotional guilt.

 

My First 5-Star Review:

Conflicted Hearts is a compilation of personal essays from D.G. Kaye’s emotional experiences of growing up with her unloving and narcissistic mother. The author struggles with her obligation as a daughter, but also her responsibility to care for herself regarding her own healthy well-being. In each chapter as she opens yet another window giving us a glimpse into her extremely trying times, the emotions become palpable. Because I am a mother of two adult children whom I love to the moon and back, I often felt tears forming and my heart being tugged at in different directions. How a mother can abandon her own children is something I find difficult to understand. D.G. Kaye writes with emotion, vulnerability, and humor. She is not afraid to admit mistakes, but she will also gladly glow in triumph – moments when I felt like clapping, thrilled with the outcome and thrilled for her!

Unfortunately, she lost her childhood because of her mother’s constant absence in the household. Her mother would rather be out partying, seeking the attention of men by using her luminescent beauty, and by doting on her passion for gambling. With the author being the oldest of her siblings, she naturally slid into the role of “mother” which in turn, shaped her decision of possibly not wanting to have children in the future. Her parent’s relationship ran extremely hot and cold, but mostly hot when her mother kicked her father out repeatedly. She adored her father, so each time he left, fear crept into her very soul that she would never see him again.

The author writes with honesty and when she finds herself acknowledging enlightening realizations, she revels in her own personal growth. I read Conflicted Hearts not only as a memoir, but also as a compelling self-help book. And a difficult decision lies in waiting with each turn of the page exemplifying the author’s courage and strength. I am sure her struggles are felt by others so that her personal growth benefits those who live each day in similar circumstances.

This is the first book of D.G. Kaye’s that I have read and because her writing is natural, conversational, and engaging, I am excited to read more from her. This book definitely falls into the can’t put down category. If you enjoy reading memoirs and self-help books, I highly recommend Conflicted Hearts. You will find yourself on an emotional and inspirational wild ride that will both touch and tug at your heart. An excellent read!

 

 

Blurb:

May/December memoirs.

In this personal accounting, D.G. Kaye shares the insights and wisdom she has accrued through twenty years of keeping her marriage strong and thriving despite the everyday changes and challenges of aging. Kaye reveals how a little creative planning, acceptance, and unconditional love can create a bond no obstacle will break. Kaye’s stories are informative, inspiring, and a testament to love eclipsing all when two people understand, respect, and honor their vows. She adds that a daily sprinkling of laughter is a staple in nourishing a healthy marriage.

Twenty years began with a promise. As Kaye recounts what transpired within that time, she shows that true love has no limits, even when one spouse ages ahead of the other.

 

My Second 5-Star Review:

D.G. Kaye’s memoir, Twenty Years After “I Do” piqued my interest for a couple of reasons. First, I’ve been married for thirty-one years to a man who is not only my loving husband but who is my very best friend. I wanted to read what the author had to say on the subject, and she certainly inserted many pearls of wisdom of which I agreed with. Before I met my husband, I had dated a man twenty years older than me, so reading her perspective on the age difference grabbed my attention, as well. This was the second book that I have read from Debby, so I was already familiar with her beautiful, conversational writing.

Debby offers snippets of insight from her own experiences on how to keep a marriage happy and unbreakable. She adds how humor can lighten any heavy situation and intimately writes of how sex ultimately changes from dating to married life. Most importantly though, she conveys that love has no timeline. Couples should enjoy each moment together and unconditional love will carry them through the difficult times. I was moved by this lovely collection of stories from Debby’s marriage to Gordon, and how she met true love when she least expected. An enjoyable read and one I highly recommend!

I look forward to reading more books from Debby and I hope you will pay her blog a visit to learn more about this wonderful author and to sink into her inviting and conversational writing, as well.

Thanks for stopping by! Lauren 💓💓

 

Visit Lauren’s original post and blog:  Book Reviews: Conflicted Hearts and Twenty Years After “I Do” by D.G. Kaye | Baydreamer

 

©DGKaye2020

bitmo live laugh love

 

Smorgasbord Posts from My Archives – Guest Interviews 2015 – A Funny Thing Happened, #Relationships D.G. Kaye | Smorgasbord Blog Magazine

Sally Cronin is running a new fun series at her Smorgasbord blog – she’s pulling out some classic interviews from the past on the topic of ‘A Funny Thing Happened’. Sally invited me over five years ago, and I think I never left. LOL.

 

 

Smorgasbord Posts from My Archives – Guest Interviews 2015 – A Funny Thing Happened, #Relationships D.G. Kaye

 

 

As I sort through and organise my files here on WordPress which now amount to over 12,000 since 2013, I am discovering gems, such as guest interviews that I would love to share with you again..

This week an early interview with D.G. Kaye, Debby Gies as part of a Sunday interview series ‘A Funny Thing Happened to Me.’ in 2015.

Little did I know as I asked Debby about one of the topics for her non-fiction books, narcissism, that a few years later she would be writing the Relationship Column for us. I have updated the interviews with recent books and reviews and I hope you will enjoy revisiting the posts with me.

 

Thank you Debby for joining us today and perhaps we could start with the increasingly documented personality trait labelled Narcissistic Personality Disorder. It is only recently that this disorder has become better known as more and more people realise that at some point in their lives they have been subjected to its negative impact. Perhaps you could describe the sort of behaviour that a narcissist would exhibit?

Hello Sally and readers of this wonderful blog. Thank you so much for inviting me to this new series to share my stories here with so many other talented artists and writers.

A narcissist, in laymen’s terms, sees him/herself as the center of existence. They feel as though their appearance and/or words trump everyone else’s. In my mother’s case, she had created a false persona that she had convinced her own self that she was superior. It was her mission to be the most beautiful one in a room, and craved attention so that focus had to be on her at all times.

Everything she talked about was exaggerated to make sure she could captivate her audience with her stories of grandeur. Her wants and needs came first to anyone else’s, including her children’s. She’d go to any lengths to acquire whatever it was she seeked.

Now, some people like to tell lies and paint pretty pictures of themselves for attention, but a true narcissist, as in my mother’s case, actually believes her own stories because she lived in her own ego.

I learned through the years of studying her, that this was a disease, which commonly wasn’t recognized as such. In the last generation, I don’t believe it was prominently diagnosed.

 

Do we all have some elements of that behaviour and if so what triggers it becoming a full blown disorder?

I don’t believe we all have the elements of becoming a narcissist, but I do believe there can be circumstances or incidents one encounters in life that propel one to becoming narcissistic. I’m no licenced psychologist, but I have to believe it can also be linked to various (undiagnosed) mental disorders, such as depression, which becomes a catalyst to narcissism, used to overcome some troubling issues. I say this because I think that besides my mother’s strife to be the best in show, I sensed a sadness within her that she was trying to conceal, not just to everyone, but also to herself.

She medicated that inner sadness with booze, pills and gambling, intermittently. She came from a poor family, and in a Scarlett O’Hara sort of way, had used her beauty as a weapon to obtain materialistic things in life.

I don’t believe anyone is born a narcissist. I think that it is the situations one lives through, which have a propensity to steer them in that direction as a means to achieve a status to feel better about themselves; and no matter at who’s expense.

 

It is obvious, as in your case, that a child would feel powerless in that kind of relationship. But is also true that adults of narcissistic parents can still be under the influence of that negativity especially as the parents age. What would be your advice to someone facing that challenge?

I would have to say the statistics show that many adults are still held under the powers of a narcissistic parent. It’s a major feat to become freed from the power that parents hold over us, mainly from their use of guilt as a means to obtain what they demand. . . please continue reading at Sally’s blog.

 

Source: Smorgasbord Posts from My Archives – Guest Interviews 2015 – A Funny Thing Happened, #Relationships D.G. Kaye | Smorgasbord Blog Magazine

 

©DGKaye2020

bitmo live laugh love

 

D. G. Kaye Explores the Realms of Relationships -Envy, Jealousy, Bullying – A Path to Narcissism? | Smorgasbord Blog Magazine

Today I’m sharing my October monthly column I write for Sally Cronin’s Blog Magazine at her Smorgasbord Invitation. This month’s edition of my Realms of Relationships is about jealous and envy and how it potentially leads to #Narcissism.

 

Smorgasbord Blog Magazine – D. G. Kaye Explores the Realms of Relationships -October 2020 -Envy, Jealousy, Bullying – A Path to Narcissism?

 

Envy, Jealousy, Bullying – A Path to Narcissism?

 

There’s nothing good about the green-eyed monster, envy. Envy is a side-effect for some who harbor resentments and suffer a feeling of lacking. And for many, this syndrome can lead to narcissism—created from the root of the bad seed of envy that nurtures itself, manifesting into desire and creating a must need to, out-do, outlast, outshine and all the other ‘outs,’ better than anyone else in their circles and beyond, to compensate for the envy and attention others receive, with a desperate want to be showered with adulation and praise to feel superior.

 

The distinction between envy and jealousy is: Envy is a reaction to lack of something others have which you desire. Jealousy is a reaction to the threat of losing something, or usually someone, to another cause or person.

 

But where does this envious or jealous behavior evolve from? What are the seeds that spawn such behavior?

 

I’m familiar with the envy and the jealousy syndrome, so I can speak confidently from experience. My mother was a champion at both. I knew my mother better than I ever let her know me. I also know her beginnings in life were defining reasons for the contributing factors aiding in the creating of both bugs in her character, and the eventuality of her narcissism.

 

People don’t just behave a certain way out of thin air. Behaviors are learned from studying or being a part of other’s behavior and then adopting those same behaviors. Bad behavior and anger grow from resentments, neglect, hurt, and lacking, which can result into rage-filled anger episodes that can ultimately become a long-term side effect in behavioral patterns as resentments pile and fester. These frenzied fits become an assault on the narcissist’s victim’s self-esteem over long-term.

 

An emotionally neglected child who is berated, ridiculed, or ignored by a narcissistic parent, may feel vulnerable and sometimes insignificant, as their own declining self-esteem gets chipped away at. Without proper nurturing and attention, these children grow up with a lack of confidence, and can possibly begin to harbor their own grievances for other’s accomplishments. This is a perpetual unhealthy existence for a child.

 

Those harbored feelings of inadequacy can lead them to follow suit and become bullies themselves. Bullies aren’t born, just as racists aren’t born, they’re bred. We are born pure. It’s the outside influences that help feed us as we develop that help shape our values and preferences. These acquired negative traits can derive from both the home and outside influences. There are a multitude of things that can contribute to the reasons for someone becoming a bully. And the usual reason for a bully’s actions will come down to one of these: they’ve been hurt, jealousy, or anger. And often, if these traits aren’t dealt with, they have a propensity to become a precursor to narcissism.

 

Bullies have been hurt. They’ve been ridiculed and made to feel inadequate at some point, so in retaliation, they project by placing their frustrations on others. Often, the name-calling by a bully is a transference onto someone else because of what someone has laid on them, or, what they imagined was laid on them. Bullies feel outdone and unencouraged, they project back on to someone weaker because they’re reminded of what they themselves are lacking in and want someone else to feel their pain. Whether in school where they’re made to feel stupid by peers, or even a bad teacher, or home where they may be teased and ridiculed and neglected, they don’t want to be reminded about what they are missing out on, be it good grades, a shiny bike, and as they age, a job, a family, a vacation, lavish gifts – they are frustrated they don’t have something others do, either emotionally and/or materialistically.

 

The narcissism develops and begins with visions of seeking to attain something to compensate for what they lack in. Narcissists require praise like we need oxygen. They have a need to be admired for their actions and possessions. Compliments and kudos are their fuel to validate they are no longer lacking. These are components to how narcissism grows.

 

A narc is an oxymoron – like two people in one. Two selfs – fraudulent, and dreamer. The dreamer self is what keeps them focused on their fraudulent motives and goals to attain superiority, often presenting a social side of their nature in public, evoking their fraudulent self of grandiosity, authority and dominance, while deep inside, they know who they really are, which perpetuates the persona of their fraudulent self.

 

Narcs must maintain their personas and egos daily. It is in fact, a lot of work for narcs to keep up the show, but a necessary defense mechanism for their ego to survive and thrive. What must go on in their minds? Pathological narcs are delusional about imagining things that never happened and twisting events that have actually happened, into a converted version that fits their narrative better. Pathological narcs are the most dangerous of all relationships. They imagine things – slights and accomplishments that don’t exist, and they believe them. The dangers presented can be anything from threats, guilt trips, blackmail, lies, excuses, and they are notorious for gaslighting anyone who threatens their bubble of superiority.

 

Narcissist
Image by Alexas_Fotos from Pixabay

 

Narcissistic parents are my familiar territory, as I grew up with a narcissistic mother.

 

Most of the damage from a narc parent begins in early development of their children, which, in itself, can contribute to becoming the catalyst for narcissism to be inherited if not checked. But not always, because it will depend on the emotional state of each individual child. Damage can lead to symptoms of withdrawal into oneself, creating a low self-esteem, becoming a people pleaser, and later, as mentioned earlier, can potentially manifest into bullying and/or narcissism transferred to their victims. The condition(s) will grow as the narc’s defenses escalate … continue reading at Smorgasbord

 

©DGKaye2020

 

Source: Smorgasbord Blog Magazine – D. G. Kaye Explores the Realms of Relationships -October 2020 -Envy, Jealousy, Bullying – A Path to Narcissism? | Smorgasbord Blog Magazine

 

bitmo live laugh love

 

Sunday Book Review – Too Much and Never Enough by Mary Trump

My Sunday Book Review is for one of the Best Selling books of 2020 – Mary Trump’s tell all – Too Much and Never Enough – How my family created the world’s most dangerous man.

I will preface my review here by saying that this book was a beautifully written memoir-ish lowdown about Mary’s life, growing up Trump, family horrors and dysfunct.

The story takes us into the lives of several Trump members. We learn how disobeying will get you disowned – like Mary’s father Freddie Jr., the makings of DJT, how he got himself into the public eye, his manipulations and unorthodox tactics, and a deep look into his lack of morals and compassion and narcissism with Mary’s analysis on the reasons that influenced DJT to become who he is. With almost 29,000, 4 and 5 star reviews for this book, it commands attention, not just for Americans but globally because what happens in the US often affects the world.

My review below is probably the longest one I’ve written, but I included a lot of pertinent quotes from the book. And there were many faceted stories that I tried to encompass as snippets and highlights. This isn’t a fairytale with a happy ending, but stories about one dysfunct family of broken people where power and money takes precedence over human emotions.

The review below is quite lengthy at over 3K words. I’ve written it as more of a synopsis for those who wish to learn more about the Trump dynasty and how it evolved with central characters and points candidly shared by Mary Trump.

 

 

Blurb:

In this revelatory, authoritative portrait of Donald J. Trump and the toxic family that made him, Mary L. Trump, a trained clinical psychologist and Donald’s only niece, shines a bright light on the dark history of their family in order to explain how her uncle became the man who now threatens the world’s health, economic security, and social fabric.

Mary Trump spent much of her childhood in her grandparents’ large, imposing house in the heart of Queens, New York, where Donald and his four siblings grew up. She describes a nightmare of traumas, destructive relationships, and a tragic combination of neglect and abuse. She explains how specific events and general family patterns created the damaged man who currently occupies the Oval Office, including the strange and harmful relationship between Fred Trump and his two oldest sons, Fred Jr. and Donald.

A firsthand witness to countless holiday meals and interactions, Mary brings an incisive wit and unexpected humor to sometimes grim, often confounding family events. She recounts in unsparing detail everything from her uncle Donald’s place in the family spotlight and Ivana’s penchant for regifting to her grandmother’s frequent injuries and illnesses and the appalling way Donald, Fred Trump’s favorite son, dismissed and derided him when he began to succumb to Alzheimer’s.

Numerous pundits, armchair psychologists, and journalists have sought to parse Donald J. Trump’s lethal flaws. Mary L. Trump has the education, insight, and intimate familiarity needed to reveal what makes Donald, and the rest of her clan, tick. She alone can recount this fascinating, unnerving saga, not just because of her insider’s perspective but also because she is the only Trump willing to tell the truth about one of the world’s most powerful and dysfunctional families.

 

Note: This review contains slices of just some of what’s revealed in the book. And since it’s not a novel, and more like a tell-all written style, with events leading up to the eventual writing of this book, much of the review is taken from context in the book. Facts could be considered spoilers for some.

 

My 5 Star Review: 

I’m giving this book 5 stars – certainly not for the subject matter, but because Mary Trump’s excellent and easy writing and presentation, and her courage to write and publish this book.

The book begins with a quote from Victor Hugo in Les Miserables: “If the soul is left in darkness, sins will be committed. The guilty one is not he who commits the sin, but the one who causes the darkness.”

The prologue takes us into a visit to the WH by the Trump family in honor of celebrating sister Maryanne Trump’s birthday, a place to show off as DJT adds “This place has never looked better since George Washington lived here.” Yes, the WH didn’t exist when Washington was president.

The story begins with Mary sharing a conversation she had with her Aunt Maryanne when Maryanne stated, “He’s a clown.” They discussed DJT as a faded reality star and failed businessman that would surely doom his run for president. Nobody in the family could conceive the thought he would get elected. Mary recalls how at every family meal Trump would disparage women, calling them denegrading names, and when he spoke of anyone more accomplished than himself, they were referred to as losers. Mary asserts that nobody in the Trump family except his children, supported his campaign.

Mary dives into the history of ‘the father’ Fred Trump and the heartbreaking story of how her father, Freddie Trump Jr.’s lineage was wiped out after Freddie’s tragic death in 1981.  We’ll learn how DJT’s reckless hyberbole hides his pathological weakness and how he became his own cheerleader. And she continues by saying that none of the Trump siblings were unscathed by Fred’s sociopathy, especially DJT and her father Freddie Jr. Mary also provides the evidence, as a clinical pyschologist, how DJT fits every criteria of being a narcissist and that he meets the criteria for antisocial personality disorder, sociopathy, criminality, arrogance and disregard for the rights of others. Mary delves into his pathological ways about dividing the country, petty revenge and his withholding of pertinent information. “Fred created the monster,” Mary adds, “There would be no love for Donald, just his agonizing thirsting for it.” And states that he is running the country like her ‘malignantly dysfunctional family.”

Freddie Trump Jr. died beneath Fred’s cruelty. Mary tells us the division her grandfather created among his own children, “…is the water Donald always swum in.” Mary continues to tell us that DJT understands nothing about history, principles, geopolitics or diplomacy and his presidency is purely financially motivated, thinking the US Treasury is his personal piggy bank. Mary adds that the events of the last three years compelled her to write this book because four more years of DJT, ” . . .would be the end of American democracy” with his hubris and willful ignorance, reminding that he had never had to negotiate alone.

“Donald, following the lead of my grandfather and with the complicity, silence, and inaction of his siblings, destroyed my father. I can’t let him destroy my country.”

Mary’s grandparents – Fred and Mary were absent parents. Mary – a mother who never knew how to comfort or stand up for her children, and Fred – a sociopath with a lack of empathy, a penchant for lying, indifference to right or wrong, and a lack of interest for anyone but himself, proving apples don’t fall far from the trees. The home, the children alienated from one another and their neediness housed a dangerous tension. Mary continues by saying DJT’s lack of mothering had him going to Fred for solace, becoming the source of DJT’s terror. His needs weren’t met and was deprived of love, which would become the scars of his life. So DJT developed  an increasing hostility to others. Eventually, Fred Trump championed the traits that made DJT unloveable.

Mother Mary was a frail woman with multiple illnesses that had her frequenting hospital stays. Fred was barely at home, out wheeling and dealing, using government loopholes to obtain loans and free money, to build his empire. From Fred’s father, down the line to all the Trump boys – nobody served in the military.

Mary and Fred Trump wed in 1936 and moved to Queens, N.Y. Mary migrated to US from Scotland. She went from being live-in help to running her own household, although Fred was the boss, and she became quick to judge others who came from her same beginnings. Fred became well-connected with politicians, the mob, and government handouts for his building projects. Fred set up ‘trust funds’ for all his children, a parking spot to avoid paying income tax. With plenty of government funding, Fred was building on the taxpayer’s dime. Other than for business, Fred was known as a miser with his money. Fred wasn’t humble and loved to show off. He loved to brag and send out press releases every time he completed a new project. (Sounds familiar.)

Fred wanted to prime his eldest son, Freddie Jr. to get involved with the business, but Freddie had other aspirations, which left 2nd son Donald to be groomed and Freddie to pay dearly for disappointing his father. For DJT, lying was a way to self-aggrandize, for Freddie, lying was his weapon of self-defense from his father. Weakness wasn’t tolerated by Fred and he abhorred Freddie’s gentle nature, and DJT followed in Fred’s footsteps.

Fred devalued and degraded Freddie for wanting to become a pilot instead of his yes man, and DJT relished in it, and this pleased his father. Sowing division is an old game for DJT, passed down from his father. The house rules dictated: be tough at all costs, lying is fine, apologizing and kindness is weakness, there can only be one winner and everyone else is a loser. Donald was a bully to his two brothers, and never reprimanded for it. Fred admired Donald’s disregard for authority. And encouraged by his father, Donald began believing his own bullshit. Freddie Jr. referred to his brother as ‘the great I am’. DJT drove his mother crazy because she couldn’t control him. He talked back to her, contradicted her, he was a slob, teased children and bullied them, and could never admit when he was wrong. His mother eventually sent him to military school, hoping he’d become a better person. We all know how that turned out. Father Fred had no use for the military.

Fred Trump was basically a slum landlord and taught his son Don how to do it. Freddie Jr. was appalled at his family’s behavior and did his own thing and paid for it dearly, eventually ostrasized by his father and the whole lot of them. According to father Fred, being a pilot was being a “bus driver in the sky”. The banishment and belittling of Freddie by his father was the beginning of Freddie’s alcoholism, and the eventual end of his pilot’s license, and ultimately, his marriage, overtime. Freddie lived in one of his father’s slum apartments and caught pneumonia from the decripit apartment in sore need of repair and drafty windows, and his dad even gave him a discount on the rent!

The Trump daughters had their share of rough times financially too, and they didn’t dare ask their father for help.

Heir apparent, used his connections with shyster lawyer Roy Cohn to get his sister Maryanne on the bench as a judge. Maryanne was a District Attorney in New Jersey at the time – early 80s. Cohn arranged with his buddy, then President Ronald Reagan. Why would Donald do something so kind? Because Maryanne did all his homework for him. But she couldn’t write his SATs for him, so, she told Mary he paid his good friend Joe Shapiro to write his entrance exams.

Fred knew his son Donald didn’t have the attention span to run his business, but made him president of Trump management. Fred thought his son had a lot of nerve, plus he was good at selling snow to Eskimos so Don came in handy for smooth-talking bankers and weedling his way into upper echelon circles. And the Trump rule was ‘no renting out apartments to black people’. This act got both Fred and Donald sued in 1973 for violating the Fair Housing Act – one of the largest federal housing discrimination suits ever brought to court. It was hired slime lawyer Roy Cohn who taught Donald to always fight back with a counter law suit to drag things out. According to the documentary I recently watched about Roy Cohn, he had similar values as Don the con – not paying employees and sliming people. Fred didn’t mind his son taking credit for Fred’s success because it was making them famous. In the early 80s, Fred began publicly giving Donald free reign because – ‘Everything he touches turns to gold”. Fred was the puppeteer who couldn’t get caught pulling the strings. By the mid 80s, Donald was losing lots of Fred’s empire so he had to intervene trying to mitigate the damage his son was doing, understanding he created a monster.

Donny boy created a fictional personna and stuck to the script to hang with the important people. Fred didn’t mind and kept the money coming for basically doing nothing except giving orders, NOT paying employees and taking credit for his father’s successes. His favorite word for all those beneath him is ‘loser’.

Fred Trump had zero compassion for anyone, including his family, even Donald. Mary shares events of past Christmas’s at her grandparents’ home, when her and her brother would receive ‘regifting’ or cheap-ass gifts like a package of underwear with the $12 sticker still on the pack from first wife Ivanna. And continued on about the the millions Don con siphoned from father Fred, especially for the Atlantic City casino that went bust. Fred even tried to help save it by having ‘someone’ buy 3 million dollars worth of casino chips and take them out of the casino to look like a loss and write-off.

Meanwhile, Freddie Jr got very ill. Having no money he shamefully went back home and was allowed to stay in a small room where he slept on a cot. When someone in that house finally cared to call Freddie an ambulance as he withered alone in the little room, he was pronounced dead not long after. And neither parent even bothered going to the hospital. Freddie was not even given a church ceremony. There was no will. Mary had to fight with her uncles over giving him the proper funeral. And that night at dinner, Donnie and dad discussed women, politics and best deals, like Freddie never existed.

Mary continues on about Donald’s money ventures, and who he slimed to build Trump Tower in 1980, built with ‘alleged’ mob money and was a continuing controversial subject in the media. By the early 90s, DJT was in debt for billions. But the banks kept on lending him money because, apparently, they felt abandoned projects would lose them more money, so they ‘banked’ on the Trump name and kept lending. This empowered DJT to think he could do no wrong and the money tree was always ripe for picking. New York’s elite dubbed Donald, ‘the court jester from Queens’.

When the banks finally did stop lending Don con money, Fred clamped down and only gave Donnie a monthly allowance that according to Mary – “was enough for a family of four to live comfortably for 10 years!” Mary states that Donald’s ‘talent for deflecting responsibility’, lying and cheating, was a trait he picked up from his father’s playbook.

As the bankruptcies kept on coming, Donnie devised a plan for more money. He approached his father’s lawyers and had a codicil added to Fred’s will – a great escape hatch for siphoning money alloted to his siblings. As Fred was halfway into dementia, Don got his father to sign. This would put him in charge of all Fred’s money upon his death, including his dead brother Freddie’s shares. But apparently, this didn’t pass ‘the smell test’ to Fred, even half lucid. Ultimately, a new will was made with Donald, sister Maryanne and brother Robert as executors, plus an add on, “whatever Donald got from Fred was to be matched to each child”. Sadly, that didn’t include brother Freddie, because, you know, he was already dead, so who cared about his family. Well, Mary Trump did! Sister Maryanne made comment if they hadn’t changed that will, they’d all have to be begging Donnie for money to buy them a coffee. Donald was under the impression that only he was important to his father.

In the late 90s, DJT asked his niece Mary if she’d ghostwrite his next book for him. Although she took him up on it, nothing developed because he would never sit down and work with her and gave her nothing to work with. Even though he’d given her one transcript of a recording he made as a ‘stream of consciousness’. It was an aggrieved collection of mutterings – about women who refused to date him, calling them the ugliest and fattest slobs he’d ever seen. Mary ripped it up and stopped asking him for interviews, and eventually, wrote no book for him. She also remarked that after hanging out at his office during bookwriting time, she still didn’t know what he did for a living.

Before Fred died, he was well into dementia. He didn’t remember many family member’s names, or even who they were. Fred was a terrible example of a father and grandfather and was mean to Mary. But ironically, as he lost his mind, he took a shining to her and called her ‘nice lady’. Donald only had contempt for Fred by that point, as he had no more use for his father. He treated his father just the way Fred had treated Freddie Jr. when he had no interest in his father’s empire and his dealings. The only thing Fred worried about, even through his dementia, was losing his fortune.

Fred died in 1999, and at his funeral, each sibling had something scripted to read for their father. Only, Donald went off script and elaborated on about how great he , himself, Donald Trump was, which nauseated sister Maryanne to the point she told her own son, “to please never let any of my siblings speak at my funeral”. Mary and her brother Fritz were left out of the will. Instead of each of Fred’s five children to get 20% each of his estate, even with Freddie being dead, and should be going to his two children, four other Trumps got 25% each. Separately, there was a bequest Fred made for his grandchildren for an amount that was less than 1/10th of 1% of what Freddie’s four siblings received.

Mary held up the will for months in probate as she nor her brother would sign off. Months later, uncle Rob had enough and they met up. Mary wanted answers as to why she was left out, Rob’s reply: “He didn’t give a shit about any of his grandchildren.” Mary asks again why her and her brother were cut out of the will just because her father was dead. Rob’s reply: “As far as your grandfather was concerned, dead is dead.” Not one Trump gave a shit about Mary or her brother.

Mary knows her father had holdings when he died. Rob wants her signature, but Mary decided with her brother, to sue the four Trumps to release their money. The four who were assigned to protect her interest! But Rob blackmails Mary threatening not to release her money ever, threatening she will go broke paying lawyers – the old Trump standard. So  Mary goes to the only allie one of Fred’s lawyers to ask about those holdings and finds out they’re worth millions and he encourages her to sue them. Rob runs to his mamma and fed her some BS conspiracy and grandma Trump calls Mary and tells her granddaughter that her father was worth nothing and hangs up on her.

Irwin the lawyer suggests having Fred’s last will overturned because Fred was being taken advantage of his dementia when he signed. Irwin sent Mary to a shark lawyer for their lawsuit, and one week after the foursome got their notice, Mary got a letter. The foursome had Mary and her brother’s family Trumpcare medical coverage removed while her brother’s son was very ill, in and out of hospital, despite Rob’s prior promise he made Fritz that he’d always look after his sick son. So Mary and bro Fritz launch another lawsuit for the healthcare issue, all the while not signing off on the will yet. Finally, there was a settlement out of desperation for need of money for Fritz’s son’s health, and they got mucho ripped off in value they were given. In the midst of the settlement, grandma dies, and Mary and her bro weren’t even in the bequest part of her will. They were erased.

Three years ago the NYT approached Mary for interview, alerting her to the fact they were working on her uncle’s finances, Mary declined, but eventually Mary changed her mind and called the journalist back who’d left her card. Mary had access to 30 banker boxes of financial files from the lawsuit her and her brother filed on her aunts and uncles. Mary had had enough of her uncle and wanted to take him down. When the NYT came out with the reports in Oct 2018 that Fred had transferred hundreds of millions of dollars to his children, Mary learned just how much money Fred left. And in 1992, after Donald tried to rip off his siblings with the codicil to Fred’s will, they finally came together with a common mission – they had to find a way to hide the millionssss of dollars Fred left them, so they opened a shell company. While Fred was still alive and not very cognizant, they realized they would be hit with millions in taxes and siphoned millions into the shell company from Trump management co – large gifts disguised as business transactions, enough that when Fred died he was said to only have 1.9 million – despite the siblings selling over 700 million worth of Fred’s assets a few years later, which I will add other than Donnie boy, the other three wanted to retain the holdings and live off the interest, but Donnie wanted his lump sum.

From Mary: “Donald’s need for affirmation is so great that he doesn’t seem to notice that the largest group of his supporters are people he wouldn’t fondescent to be seen with outside of a rally.”

“Donald is not simply weak, his ego is a fragile thing that must be bolstered at every moment because he knows deep down he is nothing of what he claims to be. He knows he has never been loved.”

“He was neither self-made nor a good dealmaker. But that was how it started – with his misuse of language and the media’s failure to ask him pointed questions.”

“It’s people weaker than he who keep him there.”

“Donald’s checkered personal history and his unique personality flaws make him extremely vulnerable to manipulation by smarter, more powerful men.” Cruelty and humiliation are his best traits he inherited from his father.

He turned Coronavirus briefings to “… mini campaign rallies, filled with self-congratulation, demagoguery and ring-kissing.” Mary affirms that DJT has always been given a free pass for his failures and transgressions against decency, law and his fellow human beings. He knows he lies, but will always test to see how far he can get away with. As Mary says, “And so far, he’s gotten away with everything.”

“Donald is a petty, pathetic man.” Mary continues telling us that to offset his powerlessness and rage he will punish others in revenge.

“As my father lay dying alone, Donald went to the movies. If he can in any way profit from your death, he’ll facilitate it, and then he’ll ignore the fact that you died.”

“The simple fact is that Donald is fundamentally incapable of acknowledging the suffering of others.”

” . . .Donald requires division. It’s the only way he knows how to survive – my grandfather ensured that decades ago when he turned his children against each other.”

Astounding to read, and my lengthy review only touches on just some of the shenanigans that continues down this dangerous line.

 

©DGKaye2020

 

 

Smorgasbord Blog Magazine – D. G. Kaye Explores the Realms of Relationships – July 2020 – Calling All Fixers! | Smorgasbord Blog Magazine

Welcome to my Realms of Relationships Column I write monthly for Sally Cronin’s Smorgasbord Blog Magazine

In this issue I’m discussing my thoughts from my own experiences on the topic of ‘Fixers’ – when we feel empowered to fix issues of those we care for, often beyond our scope.

 

Smorgasbord Blog Magazine – D. G. Kaye Explores the Realms of Relationships – July 2020 – Calling All Fixers!

 

Welcome to the July edition of Realms of Relationships Calling All Fixers

 

Are you that person who has a dire need to fix the people you care about? Are you that person who thinks nobody can fix things like you can? Let me tell you, I was one of those people, and I learned that there are definite limitations when it comes to thinking we can repair others—despite how much our hearts truly wish we could.

Our compassion and love fuel our desire to want to help our loved ones when we sense something is off. But it’s a fact that some issues are better left for the professionals—psychiatrists, psychologists, therapists, etc. Yet, sometimes our overwhelming desire wins out, and we just can’t help but feel emboldened enough to think we’re capable of taking on the task, because, after all, we know that person intimately. We love them and take care of them, so obviously we should have no problem setting things right. But no. We cannot. And we shouldn’t feel as though it’s our job to do so either. Seems I was born with the ‘nurturing gene’ so, I’ve spent much of my life learning the hard way.

We cannot fix those who don’t wish to be fixed, nor those who even deny there’s

a problem.

 

As I’ve mentioned in the beginning of this series, I have no PHD, but the one from life, so everything I write about is from the lessons I took in myself and any research I’ve done to confirm to myself what I learned. I’d read plenty on personality disorders, spirituality, and self- improvement since my teens. My curiosity has always been people and what makes them behave the way they do. There’s always a reason – a spark, an aha moment that can set someone off – a trigger. But diagnosing doesn’t mean we’re equipped or qualified to control or heal someone. So, I don’t write as a medical expert, but just an educated and experienced gal from the school of life.

For some of you here who may have read one of my books, you will know that I grew up observing my narcissistic mother, even though I knew nothing about the word or condition of a narcissist when I was a beginner in my quest to analyze her. I just figured it out as I got older and read books to satisfy my curiosity, then followed through learning more about them and discovered she was that.

 

~ ~ ~

 

When someone we love isn’t well, our natural instincts as carers is to try and fix what’s wrong. There’s nothing wrong with trying, but issues dealing with mental imbalances, such as bi-polar, manic depression, and other deep-rooted issues requiring clinical assessment are typically beyond our league. Just because we love and care for that person, doesn’t mean we have the proper experience or training to deal with such issues. Another factor could be that the affected person doesn’t realize how deep their issues go or may not even be aware they even have a problem – which should be a huge flag our loved one needs professional help.

Now, certainly we can do our best to help fix a bad attitude by offering consoling and by making best efforts to uplift our loved ones when a bad moment arises. We may offer discussion, remind them they are in a safe place to vent, reminding them we love them and care and we’re there for them, but for serious mental afflictions, it’s best they get the proper medical attention. Unless we have the medical training for some tough issues, all the talking and uplifting in the world just may not be enough.

As I wrote about here in my last article on  Empaths, for those of us who are uber compassionate people, we can sometimes become a little too eager with our desire to help those in need. Sometimes we may feel our compassionate abilities, our gift to help others, is a magic one-size fits all. But sadly, it isn’t. Because I’m not a certified therapist, I know I don’t have all the tools to fix everyone I wish to, despite my best efforts and intentions.

 

childhood hurt

 

I’ve collected many broken people flocking to me since I was a young girl – starting with my father, who, incidentally, did do his best to follow my advice, although, love and broken hearts have a will of their own, and with that, I’ll just say that at least I could still be there for his heavy landings when my mother would once again make him feel small. His hurt held a space inside my heart that ate away at me for my entire childhood and beyond. Those were my early days of becoming the parent to my father. And even at the tender age of seven, my great need to stop the hurt and stand up to my mother for the love of my father were the beginnings of my desire to become the fixer of everyone’s unhappiness.

I inherited my empathy from my father whose giant heart was smitten, and consequently, ensnared by a beautiful girl with opportunistic intentions. It was that one day when my dad dropped me off back at home after our Sunday visit that my desire to be a fixer was born.

My dad pulled up around our circular driveway, put the car in park and hugged my younger siblings goodbye as I stayed an extra few moments in the front seat so we could have our alone time for a little longer. When he hugged me goodbye, he had tears in his eyes and asked me, his seven years-old little girl, if I would please ask Mommy to take him back. Just like that—just like I wasn’t seven. He was broken, and it broke me. Not surprising I grew up with a strong desire to fix people. I was also empathetic toward my mother. Despite my resentments toward her, I continued to do things to please and appease her—even when my own heart wasn’t in it.

I tried so many times through the years to offer her ideas to better her health. I offered to buy her supplements I knew would benefit her, approved by my own naturopath, but she’d mock me with her usual derogatory names, the same old lines—“You think you’re so goddamned smart,” a common and familiar phrase. ‘Hocus pocus bullshit’ was how she referred to anything she wasn’t versed in because if she wasn’t informed, or advised by her trusted drug- pushing doctor, her  Narcissistic self would not tolerate being outshined. I didn’t know it then, but it took a few more decades of mental anguish to learn she suffered a superiority complex of grandeur, she couldn’t tolerate it if someone was smarter, better, prettier, than her.

I found this so weird because my mother never even graduated high school, but nobody would have known the better because she’d deny it to your face even though she knew the truth. Yup, that was my mother, and as my patriarchal ancestors would say, she ate my    kishkes’ out‘. (This is a Yiddish cliché expression. In direct context, ‘kishke’ is comparable to Scottish haggis.)

 

Rx

 

There was no fixing my mother, but eventually, I learned why. There was no fixing her like there was no fixing a man I wasted seven years of my life with before I met my own husband. Yes, seven crazy years – I stayed wayyy too long at that prom—to the point I was risking my life.

It didn’t take me seven years to figure it out. All the signs were apparent in the first year, but I was sure I could fix him. . . Continue reading at Smorgasbord

 

©DGKaye2020

 

Originally posted: Smorgasbord Blog Magazine – D. G. Kaye Explores the Realms of Relationships – July 2020 – Calling All Fixers! | Smorgasbord Blog Magazine

 

Sunday Book Review – My Sweet Friend – A Novella by H.A. Leuschel

Welcome to my Sunday Book Review. If you enjoy a bit of a mixed genre – #Chicklit with lessons and a splash of a narcissistic protagonist, you will enjoy this novella length romp with “best friends?” Alexa and Rosie in this fun read – My Sweet Friend by H.A. Leuschel.

 

 

 

Blurb

‘Thrilling and clever, relatable yet extraordinary’ – Whispering Stories

‘I highly recommend this intriguing page-turner to anyone who’s ever crossed paths with a true narcissist… and is still standing!’ – Felicia Denise, author and blogger

‘Cleverly plotted and perfectly paced, the characters were all flawed in their own dark ways… an addictive read’ – Dash Fan Book Blog

A perfect friend … or a perfect impostor?

Alexa is an energetic and charismatic professional and the new member of a Parisian PR company where she quickly befriends her colleagues Rosie and Jack. She brings a much-needed breath of fresh air into the office and ambitiously throws herself into her new job and friendships.

But is Alexa all she claims to be?

As her life intertwines with Rosie and Jack’s, they must all decide what separates truth from fiction. Will the stories that unfold unite or divide them? Can first impressions ever be trusted?

In this original novella, H.A. Leuschel evokes the powerful hold of appearances and what a person is prepared to do to keep up the facade. If you like thought-provoking and compelling reads with intriguing characters, My Sweet Friend is for you.

 

My 5 Star Review

Psychological Manipulator Meets Sweet and Compassionate.

We begin the story with a telephone conversation between Alexa and Rosie. We get that Rosie seems a bit ticked that Alexa needed a week off from her fairly new job at the PR firm where she ‘works’ together with Rosie. Air quotes around the word ‘works’ because that is debatable as this fun chicklit-ish romp with life lessons continues in this story, spiked with a twist of narcissism.

It’s not hard to figure out that Alexa is a narcissist who fits people into her life who can benefit her and those she can control by lying, cajoling, preying on, and projecting. Some may question her narcissism, but as a great detector of this species – she is. She’s got all the symptoms, denials, and bag of tricks.

Alexa is a manipulative girl who slithers into the lives of ‘sweet’, compassionate and good-natured Rosie and fellow  colleague and hot guy, Jack. When Alexa noticed Jack’s affection for Rosie, Alexa swoops right in with her wiley ways to seduce him just to prove to herself she can, without a thought for her friend. Alexa is a needy lover of herself and will go to any lengths to get what she wants. She uses Rosie’s compassion to cry to her, complain and lie about stories to gain sympathy. And poor Rosie is naive to Alexa’s cons – until she no longer is.

This read kept me engaged until the very end as I had my suspicions as I analyzed along with Alexa’s characteristics and shenanigans. I enjoyed reading on to see if my suspicions were accurate while focusing on Alexa’s actions with her distractions and faked distress and her odd ‘woe is me’, strange behaviors for someone so well put together and with such ‘projected’ confidence.

Thankfully, Rosie gets some well-needed advice from her therapist who helps Rosie to sort out her confusion about her friendship with Alexa, and Jack and some office pals begin to put some stories together that don’t add up about Alexa. And once Jack and Rosie corroborated their stories to one another, the gig was up.

This story kept me engaged as the author managed to keep this short novella a page-turner, keeping us wondering if Alexa gets called out all the while we’re shaking our heads at Alexa’s gumption. By the last page we’ll be left to decide if Alexa has learned anything from her experience, or will her personality keep her living life as she always has – dropping drama in her tracks? There are some good life lessons in this book, which suggests to me that anyone can enjoy this book.

 

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©DGKaye 2020