A couple nights ago, N mother called me and let the phone ring and ring and ring until I shut the ringer off. I panicked, went back to the old anxiety. I don't think that'll ever go away. I'll have to be okay with that. It's a good reflex to have, maybe, like pulling your hand back when you touch a hot pan. Keeps you from getting badly hurt.
The stuff that happened since the last time I posted is too personal to post right now. Therapy has been good for me, but only in conjunction with medication. I had to remind myself of that the hard way, and it's been a real kick in the ass.
If you are out there trying to figure out what to do about the narcissist you are dealing with, I don't have any hard and fast answers, but I can give you some advise from my journey. Just keep protecting yourself. Guilt will be your enemy. A poor sense of self will also be your enemy. You don't have to do anything you don't want to do, and it'll probably take you a long time to figure out what it is you do want. But when you figure it out, don't apologize for it. Seek the help you need, which may not be the help others think you need, and don't apologize for it. You might get torn down to build yourself back the way you want. Your story is not lying to you. Another person's story does not negate your own. Walk through the dark days and try not to carry them with you. If you do, try to remember you are not alone, though you'll feel that way sometimes. Maybe more often than sometimes. Don't close the door on options because you're worried about a social stigma. Don't let ego overcome necessity. Trust your definition of forgiveness.