My 7 year old daughter one day randomly started talking about Peppa Pig. No harm in that, you think. “Daddy doesn’t like Peppa Pig” she said, earnestly.
“Er, ok”, I say, wondering where this is going. “How come?”
“He says she’s a bitch” says my little girl.
I do a really bad job of trying not to look too shocked. My mind’s like, it’s a frigging cartoon, you weirdo, why would you call her a bitch, let alone say it to our daughter?!
He calls her another word. It starts with a N. He says she’s a “N____ bitch”.
Erm, “naughty?” I offer, and she says “No, not that.”
“Nasty? Numpty? Nincompoop?” I grapple with some ideas and I’m desperately wondering what Peppa Pig could possibly have done wrong….
She stops me and says “it’s a long word that means she loves herself”.
The word comes out of my mouth before I know what’s happening….
“Narcissistic?” I offer, perplexed.
“YES! That’s it!” she says.
And I’m agog.
Because truly, my ex husband has told our 7 year old daughter that Peppa Pig is a narcissistic bitch.
I’m sure the word narcissistic wasn’t in his vocabulary when we were together. Perhaps he’s learnt it from his new wife. It was a policeman that first introduced me to the word narcissistic when he was talking about my ex husband, trying to explain his behaviour as I sat and cried hysterically at the ongoing traumatic abuse I was suffering.
Seems like he has also learnt the word in the recent past. I know abusers have issues with projection, but really, projecting it onto a cartoon?
How to pick this one apart? And should I even bother?
But what is my daughter to make of this? And how can I fill my own head with how to even begin dealing with this absurdity?