Content warning: This post includes discussions of domestic violence and suicidal ideation that might be triggering for some readers.
The author of this story is known to Mamamia but has chosen to remain anonymous for privacy reasons.
Covert narcissistic abuse is a dangerous form of non-physical domestic violence. Its tactics of coercive control and manipulation have shattered my family, leaving my oldest daughter emotionally broken and on the brink of suicide, and my youngest daughter and I barely hanging on.
For over 14 years, my ex-husband has waged a hidden war against me using emotional and psychological abuse and coercive control. Hidden because the tactics are so covert. Only myself and a few close friends have witnessed the persistent and calculated pattern of destructive abuse. It is like stealthily drip-feeding poison into a healthy garden, slowly but surely killing it.
My garden was my children and I, once dancing, colourful and sunny. We were so close; we used to joke we were the Three Musketeers. But slowly the poison crept in until now, one of my daughters has had an emotional breakdown which my abuser, her father, has deviously used to alienate us completely. My other daughter, who still lives with me, is torn between her father and sister, and me, her mother.
Watch: Coercive control is a deliberate pattern of abuse. Post continues after video.