I originally published this on January 8th of last year, but I unpublished it because I was weighted down by fear and depression. What a funny thing depression is, sometimes you don’t even realize you’re in the thick of it until you are emerging from that dark cloud. Recent events on WordPress sent me whirling. I have not really been a part of this community for a while, which was an unrecognized sign of the aforementioned depression. So, having been away, I was honestly shocked and surprised to read of the awful actions of a fellow blogger. This is a space where I have always felt safe, and where I have always sought healing. It sickens me to think that others found only more abuse here, but learning of this was like having cold water thrown in my face. It woke me up, it made me realize I was carrying around something dark inside of myself, it made me see the depression I had been living in. And now that I see it, I can start to heal from it.
Calamity Rae did something amazing: she stood up to someone for the sake of others (and she’s caught a lot of crap for it). Just as the dark actions of one can spread out and cause exponential harm in a community, so can the good ones. Calamity has shown immense courage, and that gives other people courage. So today I’m standing up and brushing myself off. I’m republishing this post that I had taken down because I will not be quiet either. I chose to be quiet about my grandmother long ago, and if I hadn’t perhaps my words could have shed enough light on a situation to save a man’s life. That man is my grandfather, and I miss him so much.
She claimed another life this December, and now the only one left holding the purse strings is the very person who created the monsters that aided her in the heinous actions described below. I do not think she will fare any better than those she targeted, and this thought gives me no peace of mind. I’m creating my own peace of mind, and you can read about it here.
One last thing: I was hesitant to mention Calamity Rae as it seems she is growing tired of being harassed for taking a stand. Without meaning to, she seriously helped me, so I mentioned her. I hope I have not transgressed any boundaries.
I lost my grandfather this December.
For the last five years my grandfather had struggled with a trifecta of dementia, alzheimers, and parkinsons. I had not seen him since he first began to show signs of these illnesses. I allowed the issues I have with my grandmother and the way she has chosen to treat her daughters and people in general to prevent me from being there for his last years. I cannot believe I let fear rob me of something so precious, and I will have to find a way to forgive myself for this with time.
My grandpa was always a vivacious man, even with his illnesses he loved life. My parents spent a lot of time with him, caring for him, while he was sick. I know he still enjoyed life by their stories. I have worked with dementia patients before, and from that I know that with the proper care they can still have a good time in their final years.
Past a certain point the ugly situations that my grandmother creates in our family prevented my parents from being able to take care of him anymore. My mom learned he was in hospice from someone outside of the family, and I’m not sure any of us would have been notified he was dying until it had happened if it were not for this person’s kindness.
Let me be clear here. I do not think it was my grandpa’s time to die. I think my grandmother, being the evil genius that she is, orchestrated the situation so that she could end her husband’s life legally and in such a way that she would gain maximum sympathy from the surrounding community. I have been told that my grandpa had a DNR stating he couldn’t have a feeding tube. Basically, if he couldn’t feed himself then he was to just starve to death (which he did, slowly). It appears as though my grandmother kept him doped up on morphine to the point where he couldn’t feed himself anymore. By the time my mom learned the truth of his situation and spoke with a nurse about having a feeding tube put in, she was informed that she could get a court order to have this done, but it would be useless as his brain had reached such a point of decline that he would have no quality of life. There is absolutely no way to prove any of this.
I went home to help run my parent’s childcare with my dad so my mom could be at hospice with her dad. I visited him a couple of times in the evenings and stood at his deathbed, surrounded by people I felt had put him in it early simply so he would not be a burden on their lives anymore. I have never felt so helpless. I stared at this woman who has terrorized my family, who undermined my self-confidence at every turn during my life, who has caused suffering to so many with a flippancy I will never understand, and I realized that my final tie to her was about to pass out of this world. One of the last members of my extended family that I remember with nothing but love and fondness was dying, and I hadn’t seen him in years. All I could do was watch him die, standing next to the person who might have put him in that bed, and all I could say were my goodbyes.
I would love to confront my grandmother face-to-face, the problem is that she is dangerous. Posting this or anything detailing her behavior is dangerous for both me and my family, so what did I do to stop feeling helpless?
This. I’m doing it right now. This is empowerment. I don’t care that I can’t prove anything I’ve written here. I don’t care that my grandmother could pursue a lawsuit against me if she really wanted to. I don’t care what happens to me. I care what happens to all of us. The only way to stop people like this from running away with our lives is to stop hiding their wrongdoings. To discuss the situations openly can only lend to our understanding of them, and with understanding we might also find ourselves with the tools necessary to ensure that we can create a world that is not held under control by sociopathic personality types. You see, I believe that sociopaths are not born but made. I believe that some people (I was one of them, and that is how I know this) are born with a greater capacity to slip into this mode of thinking and existing. I believe that with the proper guidance early on in life these people can have full and normal lives. With greater understanding we might be able to end more than the control sociopath’s wield, we might be able to end sociopathy itself.
Mother Theresa once expressed that the West has a great spiritual poverty. I agree with her, and I also think that spiritual poverty goes hand-in-hand with sociopathy. When we allow ourselves to become isolated from one another it brings only harm to all of us. A sociopath has isolated himself from the human race by continuing to pursue harmful actions that further numb him from the normal spectrum of human emotions. If this process isn’t halted in a person it grows until all that person ever was is lost to a darkness that pervades from him and every action he takes. I’ve done terrible things in my life. I’ve linked to an article below (How to Spot a Sociopath), and I will honestly tell you that I found parts of who I used to be in those descriptions. A liar, someone who causes turmoil in others lives without even realizing it, unapologetic. I used to be many of these things. The difference between my grandmother and myself is simple: past a certain point I realized what I was doing and I chose to care about it and change. I’m not sure I could have made this decision if I had not had the upbringing that I did, and I am sorry that my grandmother never had the experiences which could have helped her to become a whole person.
I can think of nothing more sad than to live in a selfish fog so thick you can’t see even an inch beyond your own wants and needs. I believe that is how my grandmother lives. She loved my grandfather dearly, I know that. She did not expedite his passing because she didn’t love him, sociopaths do not hurt because they cannot love. She did it because he was in the way of the life she imagined for herself. I believe sociopathic personality types love selfishly, but that does not mean they do not feel love. I’m not sure which is worse, people who hurt others because they cannot love or people who hurt others despite their love. What a sad world we live in right now, and it is up to us to fix it.
So, I invite you today to share any of your own stories you might have from dealing with people like this. I also invite you to share stories of times you felt you skirted around acting this way yourself (I will be sharing some of mine in the future). I can promise you that writing about it helps, even if you don’t choose to share your stories. Write them for yourself: reclaim your power.
If you don’t feel strong enough to write, there is also a tremendous comfort in reading accounts from other victims of this personality type. These people work in darkness and secrecy, and their mucking is usually hard to pinpoint. This often leaves the victim feeling crazy and paranoid, so it helps to know you are not alone.
If you take nothing else from this, remember that last part: You are not alone.
P.S.: I understand that by admitting that I used to lie and employ these tendencies in my life I am undermining my own credibility. The thing about deciding to be an honest person is that, eventually, you stop weighing out whether or not telling the truth is “worth it” and simply tell the truth regardless of the cost to yourself. The reason for this is that being honest brings the realization that dishonesty costs more than honesty ever could. I still have a lot of things to make amends for in this life, but not making those amends is what paves the way to becoming a total and complete hole.
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Grandma, if you are reading this: I love you. I will always love you, but I can no longer stand the poison that you inject into my life and others.
Happy Birthday Grandpa. I love you.