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Narcissists & The Gifts They Give

Like everything in the life of a narcissist, the gifts they give are all about them.  They give what will benefit them in some way or what they think will make you change according to what they think you should be.  This is why so often, people dread receiving gifts from narcissists.

 

If they’re trying to win you over somehow such as in the early stages of dating or after an argument, narcissists may give a good gift.  That gift is supposed to help buy your love or forgiveness.  That gift may be extravagant or something you mentioned wanting.  My ex husband gave me only 2 nice gifts in our entire relationship.  The first one was about 2 months after we met, for my birthday.

 

Narcissists also may give a gift to make you indebted to them.  Maybe you are supposed to give them a gift in return.  Maybe the gift they gave you is very expensive so you feel obligated to tolerate their abuse because they spent so much on that gift.   Maybe you showed signs of wanting to end the relationship & this gift was supposed to make you want to rethink that move.

 

Often, narcissists give terrible gifts.  They lack the desire to be a blessing, & that shows in the gifts they give in particular on days like birthdays or Christmas.  They’re only giving gifts on these days because they have to in order to look good, not because they want to.  As a result, no thought or consideration goes into the gift.

 

Other times narcissists give awful gifts is when they try to change their victim.  For example, my mother gave me clothes for my birthday or Christmas for years.  While clothes in general aren’t a bad gift, they are when the clothes aren’t in the receiver’s taste, but are the giver’s.  Our tastes are extremely different & that was a problem for her.  My mother wanted me to like what she likes, & this was one way to try to force me to dress like she thought I should dress.  My late mother in-law did the same.  A few months before Christmas one year, I mentioned in passing that I hate to cook.  Yes, I do it because I don’t want us to starve, but that doesn’t mean I enjoy it.  For Christmas that year, she & her daughters all gave me a LOT of cooking paraphernalia.  Cook books, utensils, food, & a big ugly pasta dish I later used in the attic when the roof was leaking.. lol

 

Sometimes bad gifts are also a way for a narcissist to let you know they hate you without saying the words.  A narcissistic mother in-law who dislikes her daughter in-law will give her terrible gifts, as one example.  My late mother in-law gave me a Christmas sweater (I’m NOT into Christmas or Christmas sweaters), polyester slacks (not a fan) & other gifts that were clearly NOT my taste.

 

Sometimes they may “forget” to give you a gift at all.  This is just one way to let you know you aren’t important to them or the gift giving day (your anniversary, Valentine’s day, your birthday, etc) isn’t important to them.

 

Or, narcissists may give away a gift you gave to them either to hurt you or out of thoughtlessness.  My sister in-law gave me this cute little knick knack many years ago.  I thanked her & said it was cute.  She said she thought so, & was sure her mom would like it.  She gave it to her.  A few months later, her mother gave it to her & said something like, “I don’t know where this ugly thing came from.  You can have it.”  She said seeing it hurt her badly so she wanted rid of it.  Since I thought it was cute, I could have it.  My heart broke for her when she told me that story.

 

When you get an awful gift, it’s best not to let the narcissist know how awful you think it is.  If you do, the narcissist can play the victim & tell other people how ungrateful you are, making you look like a jerk.  Rather than ask for the receipt so you can return or exchange the gift, simply thank her for the gift, then when you can, quietly give it to someone who you know would like it or give it to a charity.

 

Likewise when you get a great gift, it’s best not to let the narcissist know you really like it.  If you do, the narcissist is going to get a ton of narcissistic supply from that, & feel that you owe her for giving you this awesome gift.  Simply thank her for the gift.

 

It’s always best to implement the Gray Rock method as much as possible when dealing with narcissists, including when they give gifts.

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One Of God’s Most Precious Gifts- Animals

I’ve always been an avid animal lover, especially cats.  In 2009 after losing my 18 year old tabby cat Sneezer, I thought I’d study what the Bible has to say about animals.  It was very eye opening!  I learned enough to write a full book on the topic, “Pawprints On Our Hearts”  

The Bible has so much to say about God’s love for the wonderful animals that He created.  Two verses though really spoke to my heart about how valuable animals are:

Job 12:7-10  “But ask the beasts, and they will teach you; the birds of the heavens, and they will tell you; or the bushes of the earth, and they will teach you; and the fish of the sea will declare to you. Who among all these does not know that the hand of the Lord has done this? In his hand is the life of every living thing and the breath of all mankind.”  (ESV)

Job 35:11  “Who teaches us more than the beasts of the earth and makes us wiser than the birds of the heavens?’” (ESV)

I’ve always known that animals can make wonderful companions, but they also are wonderful teachers.  After reading those verses, it began to click in my mind just how good they are at teaching.

My first cat, Magic, taught me how to be a good mom to my cats.  He was always loving & patient with them, even the neediest young kittens.  He knew exactly what they needed & how to meet those needs.

Vincent taught me to appreciate the little things & people.  One day I was walking him outside & he stopped to let the cool fall breeze flow through his fur.  The look on his face was sheer bliss.  When it stopped, he looked at me, then grabbed my hand & kissed it, I believe to thank me for allowing him to enjoy the experience of being outside.

Jasmine inspired me to never give up.  She had 4 strokes in just under 2 years, & fought incredibly hard to recover from them, even when a vet told me I should put her down.

If you just pay attention to the animals in your life, you can learn some really amazing things.  I have asked God to help me to learn from my furbabies.  They are also some amazing teachers, always willing to teach you.

I also talk to them just as I talk to people.  Animals are very intelligent, & they truly understand what we say to them, not only the tone of our voices as some wrongly believe.  They also find ways to convey their messages to you.   I remember one time before my dog, Bear, passed.. he  had arthritis really badly, & one day he needed a pain pill.  He came into the kitchen as I was washing dishes & looked at me.  I could tell he was hurting by how he walked, & asked if he was ok.  He looked at the fridge, then me.  I asked if he needed a pill & he barked once as if to say “yes!”  I gave him his pill, & he gave me a kiss in return.

Animals are truly a blessing & a gift straight from God.  If you aren’t enjoying them or enjoying them as much as you could, I urge you to give them a try.  Get to know them.  Ask them questions.  They’ll find a way to answer.  Most of all, love them & enjoy their friendship.  It will bring you great joy!

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November 24, 2013

I thought I’d take a little side trip today onto a light, happy topic.  A story of God’s blessings.

Yesterday was a special day.. it’s the day that eight years ago, I was able to buy my Granddad’s 1969 Plymouth Fury.  It may not sound like a big deal to you, but when you hear the story & realize I am a classic car fanatic, you’ll understand my excitement.

Granddad had the Fury when I was born in 1971.  In 1975, Dad’s car was stolen.  My mother’s sister & her husband gave him a car, but it was in bad shape, & didn’t last.  Dad told his mother the car was dying, & he didn’t know what he’d do.  She told him come on down (they lived about 75 miles away) & he could have “Pop’s” car, the ’69 Fury.  Granddad gave Dad the keys.  Dad drove that car until 1979, when the rear end & transmission were dying.  Rather than pour a lot of money into it, he sold the car to a junkyard & got another car.

In 2005, my dad was in the hospital.  Hubby & I were going to see him, but had some time to kill before visiting hours started.  We stopped at a local flea market.  I saw this gorgeous green 1969 Plymouth Fury in the parking lot, & ran to it.  It looked just like Granddad’s!  Eric suggested I leave a note, asking if the owner wanted to sell.  Two days later, he called, saying he did!  November 23, two months later & after much trouble with the mortgage refinance we were doing that tied up all of our money at the time, I got the car.  The gentleman who owned it said no way it could be Granddad’s car, but still liked my enthusiasm for her.  Probably why he sold me the car instead of another person who was interested.  

A few days later, Dad stopped by to see the car.  He was sure it was his car.  I figured that was impossible, but after he went home, he found his old maintenance manual.  In it was his Plymouth’s VIN number where he wrote it down in the 1970’s.  It matched mine.  It was the same car!

Pretty cool, eh?  I have a piece of Bailey history & every time I drive the car, I am in awe.  I named her “Christina” after Stephen King’s famous Fury, Christine.  She has her quirks, like the one day when the horn beeped at me when no one was in the car.  I can’t help but think that is Granddad’s way of saying “hi.” 

Christina is truly a gift from God.  Not only was she my favorite car that my Granddad owned, but I have a thing for big old cars.  She is so fun to drive!  Also, since God gave her to me, He protects her.  In the last 8 years she’s been mine, there have been many severe storms.  During one of them in 2010, our house & the next door neighbor’s chimney were struck by lightning while we were out.  We drove home to find the whole area in shambles- power lines down, trees down, leaves & limbs everywhere.  When we got home, we were horrified to see their chimney’s bricks all over our driveway!  Yet, not one hit my car!  A couple landed under the car, but the car was unscathed.  Also, the tree beside where Christina was parked?  It’d been struck too- it was split in half!  Yet the only thing on my car was a few leaves & tiny splinters of wood.  Another time, we lost a huge branch off of one of our trees- it landed in the 8″ of space between my car & the fence, not touching the car.  And, yet another time, another very large limb, about 4″ in diameter & 10′ long landed on my hood during an especially wicked late night storm.  I saw it happen, & was terrified at the damage, but since it was dark, & the rain wasn’t stopping, I couldn’t see until morning.  That was when I discovered absolutely no damage to my car- not so much as a scratch.  A friend of mine has said repeatedly that “God’s got my back with this car.”  She tells the truth, that’s for sure!

My car is very special to my family & I.  She’s truly a blessing from God, & I give Him all the credit for sending me this lovely gift.  I wrote the car’s story from her perspective as a free ebook.  It’s available on my website, along with other free ebooks.  Just go to the following link:

http://www.cynthiabaileyrug.com/Free%20Ebooks.htm

Here is Christina, not long after I bought her, after my dad spent the afternoon waxing her, like he had 30 years before.

Image

 

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