When you have a narcissistic and/or pathological liar as a parent, sometimes other people have better memories of your parent than you do. Annnnnndddd that sucks, man. It makes you question your reality. Am I being a biggety biotch or was shit not right? Chuck said he liked my dad. So I must be wrong! On top of feeling crazy, a deep feeling of remorse kicks in. Wait…have I been at fault this whole time? Oh no! I’m a bad person. I’m a bad person. I’m a bad person. Hold my calls as I rock myself into oblivion.
After some time of crying and reflecting, you realize that both things are true. Chuck can like your dad while you do not. With that understanding comes more pain because you realized that your parent cared more about themselves and how they were perceived than literally caring for you. What was I, Dad? Chopped liver? Or in this context… a mere reflection of your own ego???
A lot of people liked my dad. He was funny, charismatic, and was living the most interesting life. It was all lies, but they didn’t know. My dad made people feel special and important. He was well-read and knew a lot about history and politics. He was someone you wanted advice from. You looked forward to talking to him since he had all these fascinating stories and made you laugh. On top of it, he was pleasing to a woman’s eye. He made you feel sexy in a way other men couldn’t. So where does that fit into my reality of him being a narcissistic/pathological/sociopathic/sexual abusive father?
Right in the middle of it all.