When I was in college, my mom called me on a Friday night and left me a voicemail to call her back whenever I had time to chat. It was very clearly a message not to worry about anything, and she didn’t try me again. She knew I was a bartender, and she knew I worked weekends, so she reasonably expected me to wait until Sunday or Monday night to call her back. Especially since she had reassured me it would be okay.
That’s why she called my employer on Sunday morning and drove them into a panic. I just remember going into work to run an errand and one of the managers seeing me like he’d just seen a ghost. “We thought you were dead!” he said. I had no idea what was going on.
He said my mom called and said she hadn’t heard from me. They actually sent people out looking for me. That’s how worried they were. And they didn’t even call me, because they trusted that if my mom couldn’t reach me, no one could. I was so numb to this, I just eased their fears and moved on with my life. It’s my only way to live.
Notice how she said, “I tried to reach you all weekend but was not successful.” She is very careful with her words to conceal and manipulate. Looking back, I didn’t even realize that she could have asked if I worked that weekend. I was so naive. But frankly, I didn’t want to bother. I just wanted to move on, because that was my only choice.
Soon after, she saw me for Thanksgiving and flew into a psychotic rage, like usual. This is how she responded:
As you can see, she is immediately gaslighting, projecting, and scapegoating me. According to her, I am to blame for everything. It’s not her behavior that is a factor, but I am the one who’s threatening her. And she escalates quickly to strike fear in me, even accusing me of wanting to harm my little sister.