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Do my people really get it?

This is the post excerpt.

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Narcissism does not exist in my country, does it even exist in Africa as a whole? Does anyone understand what mental health is all about? There has been a lot of talk about gender based violence particularly in my country Zimbabwe. But I think the world as a whole is evolving and GBV as we know it is also changing.

I am a mother of two beautiful daughters and have been married to a narcissist/ psychopath…….whatever he is but what I know for sure is that he suffers from one Cluster B personality disorder. Trying to make people understand that this person suffers from a mental disorder has been my greatest obstacle over the past 9 months. No one understands mental health, there are a few articles that have appeared in our local newspapers from psychologists but, even the health professionals do not take it seriously. Whenever I try….(God knows I have tried) to explain that all these false allegations, all this physical abuse, all this harassment, all this stalking is a form of abuse, all I get is that it is his way of showing his love to you. How can someone love you when all they do is verbally, emotionally, physically, and financially abuse you?.

It is appalling to realise that most people still believe in witchcraft instead of science when it comes to mental health issues. Am i really cursed for getting into a relationship with a narcissist?

My then 7 year old daughter (Sandsa)told me to go and she made me a card when he choked me in December 2016. She made me a card that will always remain a part of me wherever I go. This is the picture that I am using as my logo for my blog. My then 4 year old daughter (Kan) said ‘mummy you are my deepest secret because I love you’. All because their father does not allow them to show affection to me, so the only way that they can do that is by keeping it a secret. How does a 7 year old and a 4 year old keep secrets. At their age they already know how to act and what to say when their dad is around. They scurry around as soon as his car shows up at the gate. I just want my kids to be normal. I want them to play in the sand pit all day long and not worry about keeping secrets and who is in the house.

Everyday I cry myself to sleep because I left them with their father, my helper promised me she would take care of them. I have known her for almost 4 years now (though as of last week she helped him incriminate me in one of his false allegations). He has turned her against me as well.

This blog is maybe my way to vent but also my way of bringing narcissist abuse awareness in Zimbabwe. I have written an open letter to the ministry of women affairs, I have written an open letter to Huffington post, maybe someone will hear my cry for help. I am tired of the verbal abuse through his emails that he sends on almost a daily basis, I am tired of the harassment whenever he sees me he starts taking pictures, I am tired of the threats which always lend in my inbox everyday, I am tired of the smear campaigns as nothing will stop him from pulling away anyone that tries to help or support me. I live in hiding as I am scared that an opportunity where I am in a vulnerable place he will kill me but unfortunately no one understands that, this is a man who has attacked me twice in public. But still everyone says its because he loves you, does harassment qualify as love?

Gender based violence with a narcissist is different, please help support these women who are involved with people who have a high IQ, any loopoles within the law is what they take advantage of. I have slept in police cells because he knows that anyone that is reported whether false or not can be detained in police cells for about 48hrs. He has all my information and so he makes use of that to create false allegations. He makes sure to pay off the cops and and anyone that is influential so that I get arrested. Through his emails he has told me he will make sure I suffer and when I show that to the police or anyone in authority they either laugh it off and he says I am a drama queen. I am I a drama queen for reporting abuse? Isn’t that emotional abuse where my protection order should be protecting me against such?

Narcissist abuse is a form of love in Zimbabwe, psychopathic abuse is being a drama queen in my country, cluster B personality disorders is witchcraft and evil spirits. Maybe one day the world will see the extent of this type of abuse where one is forced to live with C-PTSD and my community still says its love, or witchcraft, or evil spirits.

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It doesn’t Stop

Its been six months since I last posted. I have had so much to reflect on. A lot has happened, some good and some bad. I have made progress and I have tried. I will continue and I wont stop. I have a duty to raise two strong women…..it doesn’t stop but one day it will…………

It hurts so bad.

Emotional abuse eats at the core of the soul. It eats you slowly, slowly chewing at your inner most feelings. Noone can comprehend what I feel and noone is ever going to understand how it hurts because the scars are hidden deep inside me. I dont have a black eye or a broken nose or hand to show the abuse that I have faced and still continue to face.

The past two weeks were bad,Yes I was in court again to defend myself and also to testify for the beatings that I got on the 31st of August 2017. Its not easy for me to read the emails from him rebuking me, threatening me, harassing me and making sure that I live on the edge not knowing what else is going to come from him. Its not easy for me to re-play the video of when he attacked me on that day. His lawyer cross examined me and asked me why I took the video, of course I did because I knew he would deny everything. I have been beaten and because its my word against his, the proof becomes minimal, this time around I had to have solid proof. Because people chose not to believe that I am being abused I had to have undisputed proof. What appalls me is that people, especially in the justice system see it but do not take immediate action to protect me. I am scared of walking alone because he will attack me. My voice shivers as I answer the questions in court. His lawyer tries to confuse me because he knows I am a nervous wreck.

I do suffer from anxiety and panic attacks, my brother had to bring me a bottle of cold water to calm my nerves. Just before I went into court I received another email from him. My heart starts pounding because I can not take it anymore. This is one of his tactics to get me on the edge so that when I testify I am not able to stand up for myself. But I need to be strong because I have two little girls who are being emotionally abused and I only know the full extent of what is going on. I saw it in their eyes when he brought them along to court, they said I was their deepest darkest secret. It breaks me to know this whole process will take a long time before I can save my daughters.

I have e-mail, lots of e-mails, besides the fact that he hacked into my computer and deleted my emails on the 31st of August 2017, I still have lots and lots of e-mails where he harasses and threatens me. I have had to change my phone number several times, I have had to open different e-mail accounts so that he does not continue to torment me. I produced these e-mails in court and everyone was stunned as who could say or do that to the ‘mother of his children’. Its not surprising and that is the impression that he wants to give that I am crazy and no one believes who could do something like that to someone they once loved, ‘the mother of his children’.

I was his lover, friend, wife, mother to his kids once but I wish I could erase that part of my life. For more than 8 years I was abused and lost any sense of who I was, or rather who I am. I am so nervous even when I make the smallest of decisions, I am so scared to walk out through the door because I feel like he is following me and wants to make sure I continue to suffer.

I was supposed to be graduating with my Masters in Business Administration this year, I actually should have graduated in December 2016. Two classes have graduated since I enrolled for my MBA, he sends me an e-mail to tell me how stupid and dumb I am and how I could have also graduated this year or last year. But doesn’t he realise its because of the sabotage that I got from him that I have not been able to complete my education. I love to advance myself academically and the challenge of completing my education keeps my blood pumping. He sends me pictures of one of the girls who graduated that I was in the same class with ( he cheated on me with her). He tells me that it could be me but me being so ‘stupid’ I was not able to graduate for a second time.

Oh, yes, all his girlfriends are people that he has either dated of cheated on me with. Over the course of our relationship I have had to deal with how those women are better than me. He would chuck me out of the bedroom everytime his mistresses or girlfriends called. He would wake up at 1am and spend 3hours in the bathroom because he was talking to his mistresses, I would pretend to sleep because even if I confronted him I would get a thorough beating. Besides how dare I question him, he was supposedly my ‘god’, in anyways he ‘knew what I wanted’ and ‘what was good for me’

I was not supposed to question any decisions he made otherwise I would be beaten to a pulp. I had to avoid questioning or asking him because I would be chucked out of the hosue and he would take away all my necessities, he would take away my money, my phone, and even the car. I would have to walk and borrow money so that I could talk to my family and friends.

He made me feel like I was cheating on him if I talked to my mother, my sister, my father, my friends. Ideally I was not allowed to talk to anyone that he did not approve because they were ‘a bad influence to me’. No one would visit me because he would either chuck them out or he would give them a cold shoulder so much so that they would quiver at the thought of coming back again. Non of my interests mattered to him. I love going to church and helping out at my kids school, but whenever I tried to get involved I would be embarrassed in front of my anyone. He would come and shout at me in front of my friends, in front of my mother, in front of my church colleagues. He would be so subtly about it but people could see it. I have had to walk from church because he came and took away the car. I have had to ask for a lift back home because he took off with my handbag, the car and any money that I had.

To say this is just the tip of the ice-berg would be an understatement. I have suffered in the last eight years and as much as I am on the road to recovery it will take me a long time for me to get back to who I was before the abuse. I have my family for support throughout this journey. Sometimes I find myself in a corner whimpering because I feel I cant take it anymore. I am scared when my phone rings because its the police calling for another allegation. I am scared when I hear a notification on my phone because its another threatening or harassing e-mail from him. I am scared of leaving the house because I might bump into him and he will attack me. I am scared of sleeping because of the violent dreams that I have, of him chasing me or attacking me.

Yes I suffer from post-traumatic stress disorder due the abuse at the hands of this man.

The Beatings.

On the 20th of December 2016 I left home on the insistence of Sandsa. What I regret the most is that she saw her own father beat her own mother. That is when I made the decision that I would not allow my daughters to grow up in an abusive environment. It was so easy for Sandsa to say ‘mummy just go, mummy just do it, just go’. She did not know where I was meant to go but she knew I would be safer anywhere else and not in the hands of her father.

This was not the first time that I have been physically abused by my husband. This was not the first time that my girls had heard me scream for help. The abuse had started way before I could grasp the fact that I was in a dangerous environment. So many times my girls heard me scream, so many times they saw tears streaming down my cheeks, so many times they saw the sadness in my eyes, and so so many times Kani had held me in her arms and say ‘ I’m sorry mummy’ because at the tender age of two that is the only way she could console me.

I have slept in the bathroom three times during the course of my marriage. The first time my husband beat me because I had left my phone at home and ‘some guy’ had called on my phone while I was away. I checked my phone and couldn’t recognise the number that had called. I was force marched into the bedroom and then he beat me up. I ran to the bathroom for safety hoping that once he had calmed down we would talk about it. After a few hours I came out only to find him waiting for me with a belt. My husband beat me like a mad man, punishing me for something I was not even sure had happened. I ran back into our bathroom when I managed to get free from his hold. I slept in the bathroom for two nights and each time I came out he would beat me up. I slept on the floor and used clothes in the laundry basket to warm myself up during the cold nights. For three days I did not have anything to eat save for some water from the taps. It is only now after research that I realise that for the first time in my relationship I had been gaslighted. I had been punished for something that actually did not occur.

After this incident I have slept in my bathroom twice all for issues when I look back now I realise these are all made up stories. When one is married to a narcissist they make you believe that is it your fault that all these beatings occurred. Everytime my husband beat me his words would always be ‘ you know I did it for us’. The minute I would try and tell my side of the story or let him know what he did was wrong, that would also call for another beating or he would just completely ignore me. He would always rationalise his behaviour and say he needed to do this because he had to save our marriage.

I have had a dislocated knee because he kicked me when I wanted to go out and jog in the morning. I have had multiple headaches because my head had been banged to the wall. I have had multiple bruises due to the beatings that I have received for something things that I have no idea of. I have had food thrown in my face because I had used the wrong plate or used the wrong spoon or cooked the right food.  I have walked on eggshells in my eight year old marriage because anything and everything could tip-off my husband.

I have run away from home several times because of the physical abuse only to be strung back in by his lies and promises that he would change. I had always thought and imagined a happy family and marriage like the one that I grew up in. Growing up I had never seen my father beat up my mother. I always thought we would get through this with my husband, but as time passed my husband kept getting worse. All the beatings, all the sleepless nights, all the claps, all the kicks, all the choking, the swollen legs, the bruises on my neck and hands, I stayed in this relationship for far too long and would probably have died if I had not left.

You see, I have always been a strong person. I thought I could fix my marriage and I would help my husband be a better person and above all be a better dad. I thought, or so I thought I could fix everything the way I have always been able to. Yes I am a fixer and I always try to find the best in even the worst of situations and I do not run away from problems.

Sometimes I get the question ‘ why didnt you leave?’. It not easy for an abused person to leave an abusive relationship especially because when one is dealing with narcissist abuse, the abuse is so subtle. Nobody ever imagined that I was in such a bad situation because he would hold my hand in public, he would give me money to spend (though he would secretly steal it, another gas-lighting technique), he would make sure I was well dressed. The kids and house where all a show he put up to make sure we portrayed the ‘perfect family’. How was I going to leave when everything seemed so perfect from the outside, how was I going to leave when all my friends and peers envied me for the big cars that I was drove, or for the nice clothes that I had.

I have had the courage to leave because of my daughter who told me to go. She was only seven years old but that is all the encouragement that I needed. She gave me advice without question and was looking out for the best of my interests. Sometimes all abused people need is that 7 year old to tell them its OK to find yourself first, without any judgement and with support. Sandsa is that little voice that keeps ringing in my head that maybe, atleast maybe someone in my country will understand that narcissist domestic violence is a form of abuse that eats at the soul of an individual. Its not only physical, but its emotional, its verbal, its financial, it all abuse at the end of the day that ruins someone at their core.

 

 

On the move!

Yes I am on the move again. I have travelled more in the last 10 months than I have ever travelled all my life. I have been to Bulawayo-to Harare-to-Masvingo-to-Gweru-to- Joburg and to Bulawayo again. And yet everytime the goal post is shifted, another abuse tactics of a narc (narcissist).

When one is married to a narc domestic violence goes beyond the scope of domestic violence as we know it, and unfortunately that is what a lot of people do not get. Yes I have to be on the move, I have to keep moving because he always makes sure that the courts keep moving from one place to the other, the dates are always changed every time we go to court.

I am going to court in different locations and different days in the next two weeks for false allegations. He says I stole some documents in December when I left home and the documents are worth $13 000. He says I cut his clothes more than one and half years ago. And the clothes are worth more than $2900. Whenever I go to court for this issue the prosecutor says to ‘me run’ in a sarcastic manner. Being a woman herself I thought she would understand abuse. Being a prosecutor I thought she would see through the lies of my narc husband.

He says I stole my laptop that I had been using the past 4 or 5 years. I met my soon-to-be-ex (stbx) in town three weeks ago, he attacked me and grabbed my belongings including my laptop. He goes on to take all my personal information and claims I stole the laptop and starts spreading my personal information to all my contacts and anybody that knows me. The laptop is part of our matrimonial property that is supposed to be shared by the judge in our divorce matter. The police take the laptop and say it will be used as an exhibit in court. I don’t have my laptop anymore and now I have to use my phone to write and update my blog.

The smear campaigns and the threats do not stop there. What puzzles me is that the police and the prosecutors at the courts can see through the lies and that these are made up allegations but they chose to ignore it or they say that it is his right to lay charges against anyone. Why cant the police make inquiries or do proper investigations into all these matters before one even goes to court? Why cant we have proper investigations before one is taken to court? What is the use of the prosecutors desk when a docket is brought to court, isn’t their job to check the credibility of a case before it goes to court.

These are not the first allegations, I have gone to court for stealing my own kids’ passports only for him to admit to one of the public prosecutors that he had them at home all along. I have been accused of child abandonment, when I had left the kids with the helper because he had assaulted me. I have been accused of abducting my own kids when the judge ordered that I spend a few hours with my kids since they had not seen me in seven months. I have been accused of stealing my own set of keys when I left home after he had assaulted me. In all these issues I have had to self represent because I do not have the money to hire a lawyer. Yes he took all our source of income as his as I do not have the right to anything according to him. His words are that I will be ‘shuffling my feet back and forth from court until I become a destitute sleeping in old caravans’.

Narcissists find joy in punishing other people,but the people around me say all this abuse is because he does not know how to show his love for you, otherwise he loves you. My question still stands should abuse be confused as love? According to Tina (www.onemomsbattle.com) why cant the family courts see through that in divorce matters one of the couple might actually be telling the truth and the other actually suffers from some sort of personality disorder. Is it because in Zimbabwe mental health is only a category for those beggars and homeless people who walk around in tatters. Should mental health be an issue only when one shows overt characteristics of being delusional.

He brought the girls to court today. They were too scared to run to mummy, they sat next to him and after getting authority from him they run to me and and start crying. They ask me when I will be able to come and get them. I tell them I promise I will keep fighting. I promised them that I will get them one day. I see the sadness in their eyes and it breaks my heart. But I have to keep moving I have to keep fighting that I do not get any of these criminal allegations to stick.

I am going to Harare today from Bulawayo I have to take the cheapest bus because I cannot afford just regular transport. And he followed me to the bus, I have to make sure I stay in a public area because I am afraid he will attack me if I stay away from the public eye. I have to keep moving because I have a meeting with a lawyer friend who says they might help me. I need all the help I can get. And yes I have to keep moving because I have two daughters that I am teaching that its not good to stay in an unhealthy relationship. I have all the girls of the world who will one day see their own self worth before they get into abusive relationships.