It was the 1990's. She suddenly required surgery for a life-threatening medical problem. Because her narcissistic spouse was self-employed and had a sizeable income, he also has a sizeable deductible on their health insurance policy. In fact, it was ten thousand dollars. The thing is, the deductible hasn’t yet been met; the entire ten thousand dollars needed to be paid.
The husband, because he was driven by an unhealthy level of narcissism, told his wife the deductible was her problem; he wasn't going to pay it. He essentially let her know that he could care less if she can come up with the needed money or not.
This woman simply didn't have the money. But then, her narcissistic husband's name was on all the financial accounts. Furthermore, in recent years, he’d only given her an allowance to cover household expenses—and it barely has done that. Then, as if this wasn't enough for her to have to deal with, this narcissistic man has made her account for basically every dollar she had occasion to spend. Well, and he even required that she hand back to him any extra money she might have from being careful with this money. As a result, she hadn't had the opportunity to save ten thousand dollars.
That all said, money had never been an issue in the past. While this woman sometimes had to beg her narcissistic husband for whatever she needed as well as wanted, he ultimately had always paid for these things despite being an abusive narcissist in other ways.
Needless to say, now this woman was indeed anxious. She tried not to worry because she believed this would only exacerbate her poor medical condition. But she hardly knows how to stop herself from doing so because life was possibly on the line, and yet her husband didn't seem to care.
The day came where she set aside her feelings of embarrassment and shame. She shared her plight with a friend with whom she'd never shared the realities of her life before.
“Why don’t you put it on a credit card and present your husband with the bill later? Maybe at that time, he’ll go ahead and pay it without saying another word. In other words, if he's anything like my husband, if he’s having a down month, he wants to hold off paying any of the major bills until things turn around again."
The woman stared hard at her friend and murmured, “My husband just cut up the only credit card I could have used for this. He said I wasn’t being a good steward of his money. And he said this when I'd hardly spent a dine on anything other than what I'm told I can purchase in order to project the image he wants me to project."
“I’m sorry to hear that,” the friend replied before letting out a short and tight laugh. “Well, your taste is certainly much better than mine,” she said.
The narcissist's wife spat out, “But my clothes represent my husband’s taste, not mine. In fact, do you know that my husband picks out essentially everything that I wear?”
“And I thought you had a perfect marriage," the friend replied.
"Because my narcissistic husband insists that I always project that image.” the wife shouted back. “My husband wouldn’t have it any other way."
Days passed. The date for her surgery grew near. The woman was just about to cancel the surgery when her husband finally agreed to cover the deductible. She tried to hug her husband to hank him, but he pushed her away and said, "You’re acting as if you didn’t expect me to pay that deductible. How could you think such a thing about me?”
“Well, you said—”
“Don’t try and tell me what I said. I told you I wouldn’t pay it right then, but I never said that I wouldn’t pay.” His voice grew louder. “I just didn’t want you or them having my money any sooner than necessary.”
Needless to say, the feelings of relief the woman had briefly experienced evaporated as she felt the sting of her husband’s words. And then he shook a finger in her face and said, " What in the hell have I ever done to deserve this type of treatment—you acting as if I would deprive you of needed medical care?"
The wife began to shuffle out of the room without saying anything.
"Yeah, slink away like you're forever doing," her narcissistic husband shouted after her. "Since you're one impossible bitch to satisfy, I don't want to see your face any longer anyway.” He paused only momentarily before he screamed, “Too bad this surgery won't improve your personality. That’s what you really need—to be able to show a little gratitude now and then.”
She felt the tears begin to slide down her cheeks. Really, wasn't that what she was trying to show when he twisted everything? Yeah, once again he twisted everything to make her out to be the wrong--and the selfish one.