I had posted relatively recently a surprising interaction with my husband’s ex-wife, who I believe has narcissistic tendencies.
In the phone call exchange that I overheard, she asked him. “What was Kim doing talking with another mother?”
As I wrote previously, this “another mother” had called me in regards to a situation. I then returned the favor and called her in regards to another situation she needed to be informed about.
My husband’s ex-wife floored me at first. I could not believe someone was so clueless as to not realize that there is a whole network of communication around each of us. None of us live in a bubble. Then, I remembered she saw the world through the eyes of narcissism.
To her, we are all flat, one-dimensional doll figures that exist in her world to be subject to her manipulations, much like a doll is a one-dimensional object, simply present to fulfill a child’s projections at that moment.
The child has sole control over such a doll. The doll can be “good” one day and very “bad” the next. The doll can be a friend, a child, a baby, a student, and so on- depending on the child’s imagination. The doll simply exists where ever the child places it.
I realized that this is how a narcissist treats all those who “interact” with them in life. Narcissists never see us as complete, whole people in our entirety with a range of strengths, weaknesses, emotions, behaviors and thoughts of our own.
No, we are simply the “dolls” of their lives, with a role only assigned by them.
When my husband’s ex-wife expressed surprise that myself and this other mother had spoken (without the ex-wife’s awareness), I realized we were the doll figures in her life and she was surprised, because in her mind, she had never placed both these “dolls” in the same room of her delusional, “life is like a dollhouse” world.
She could not envision we would talk, because in her controlling world, she never would have placed us in the same room of the dollhouse. If we weren’t in the same room of her dollhouse, then there would be no possible way for us to communicate.
Children will do this when they play with dolls. They will completely create worlds and partition who gets to interact and who does not get to interact. They are the maestros and they control it all.
Narcissists never out grow childhood. They see us all as the dolls of the dollhouse world in which they have ultimate control- regulating who goes where and when, who interacts with who and why, and so on.
As a child eventually learns, there is a whole real world beyond a dollhouse and the child’s imagination. The delight in life is in interacting with the newness and evolvement of things beyond your control.
Too bad, narcissists never learn this. They are always shocked when they receive the message “This ‘doll’ has a life and won’t be living in your dollhouse anymore.”
They never understand we were only doll-like in their minds, never our own.