You cannot move forward until you realize the truth of your connection with a Narcissist and that is everything was based on a lie!
From my Book – From Charm to Harm and Everything else in Between with a Narcissist! @http://www.amazon.com
You can’t get over this relationship and move yourself away from the hold this Narcissistic monster has on your life! So in turn YOU try to work it out in your head and heart. You keep reaching back into the past searching for something. Are you searching for answers to so many confusing questions? Probably a resounding YES, but there really is NOBODY there to answer those questions – BUT there are many messages in your head, so you turn to justifying most everything to resolve what only amounts to YOU now abusing yourself by reliving the past and replaying those distorted messages from this Narcissist over and over again in your mind. THIS WAS ABUSE by a personality disordered person that has brainwashed you into believing all of this distorted stuff! But the reality of the situation that this IS abuse never seems to agree with your heart, emotions, and empathy to form some sort of cohesive agreement or middle ground so you are left with a horrendous burden to shake this off!
You ask yourself HOW can someone you showed so much love, turn around and abuse that love. You also ask yourself WHY would a person con you into believing they loved you do such a horrendous thing so they could extort your life through this fictitious love. You ask yourself how you didn’t see all of this and you question your sanity because you feel that you ALLOWED this to happen. You then start questioning the very things that this Narcissist accused you of and perhaps believing that you do have issues! You question this, that and everything! You question yourself for no viable reason other than trying to reach some sort of understanding EVEN though you now know the truth. But there is no other answer than the truth and that my friend is just way too difficult to accept.
Where do the answers to your self-questioning come from? Basically from the experience of being in a relationship with a Narcissist and as odd as this sounds that is where you have to find your closure – or with the truth. So to start, you have to conceptualize that EVERYTHING WAS A LIE. Not almost everything, but EVERYTHING from ‘I love you’ to ‘I hate you, you are mentally ill, your friends, hate you, my family hates you, the world hates you, etc.!’ Don’t forget all the other day to day lies, the lies about the affairs, the lies about STUPID stuff, the lies about accountability, the lies about other lies, etc. All of these messages that the Narcissist was basically downloading into your head is all part of their delusional disorder based on LIES that they used to manage you down, gain power over you, and to control you. So when you refer back to these messages they put in your head and RELATE to them to try to resolve ANY of this, and you are only listening to the same delusional lies that got you into this abusive relationship that is now still convincing you that you are to blame, or everything bad/wrong, and that YOU have to accept responsibility here for the demise of this relationship. Those messages were designed to debilitate you and they have – so replaying any of them will still keep you in right in the abuse.
As convincing as the Narcissist in your life was about their love for you it had absolutely NOTHING to do with love. Every single action employed by the Narcissist stems from a pathological need to control others. In order to prove your love to a Narcissist, you had to surrender your identity and all of your power and control to them. You handover your life when you handed them your heart. That predator knew that if they attacked your heart then they had you where they wanted you. You became a slave to them and your only purpose was to enhance the Narcissist’s false image, take care of their every need, and accept their self-serving abuse. The cage they used to keep you captive were all of those lies – the POSITIVE endearing I love you lies and the disabling ones that managed you down every day to control you and eventually destroy you. Of course the package is never presented to us in this manner – instead the Narcissist employs extreme manipulation to con you into trusting them implicitly with THREE very thoughtful and well placed and deceptive words – ‘I Love You!’
OK – now for the jibber jabber! As social and self-involved creatures, living together, seeking each other out, we also, spontaneously create a moral order of what we must do, can do and cannot do, and why. This is what regulates how we will interact, defining and protecting individual rights and the social order. Narcissists know that there is a moral order but they don’t abide by any of it and instead they constantly violate it. There is no connection to it whatsoever. But to function in our world they will PRETEND to be one of the most respected individuals out there because otherwise they would be deplored by society and nobody would play with them. So like everybody else we bought into their big lie and con job – but unfortunately we did it on a much more personal level that involved MANY distorted messages as well as the disabling lies. That is the working mechanism in these creatures that enables them to function normally (or look like they are) so they can fit in otherwise they wouldn’t be able to extort life as they do. Simply put they are that big lie that enables them to process and harvest people to get what they need and EVERYBODY falls for their lies but at different levels.
So this Narcissist has tricked you in such a heinous and perverted way and it just doesn’t make sense to a person of empathy that can LOVE. You were raised with morality and standards. You KNOW how to love and trust. You DIDN’T grow up learning that these monsters are out there that are the total opposite of what love is! You will NEVER feel good about this or reach some sort of realistic closure based on the belief system YOU GREW UP WITH, and as well you shouldn’t have too! BUT unfortunately there are a few new words in your vocabulary that you have to now educate yourself about and process them into your scope of the world. Those words are Narcissist and ABUSE. You have to completely dump the messages that this Narcissist has used to gain power over you, control you and abuse you. You have to STOP listening to those messages because ALL OF THEM WERE LIES. It takes time to do this because you have spent so much time believing these lies, now you must spend some time disbelieving these lies. There is no guru out there that can offer you anything that will make this magically disappear until you completely get this, so stop looking for that quick fix. Educate yourself with good information. Understand your enemy and what they did to you. Get healthy and then take a look inward and see what if anything made you available to a Narcissist, THEN set strong and new boundaries. Just DON’T blame yourself as if you deserved this and don’t let others blame you either and most importantly do not ever believe those lies again!
Recovery requires a complete indulgence and openness to look inward. It is a process that requires education, introspection, spirituality, voicing your fears, connecting with other targets/survivors, and a therapist if possible. You MUST totally acknowledge the truth about this person you loved and that is that they are an abuser, psychological terrorist, and psychological rapist. The process begins when you say no to the negative messages left behind and open your ears and eyes to a new life that seeks out true goodness because it is still there where it always was. Finally you must put the Narcissist away forever because there is absolutely nothing that you need to connect with as far as it concerns them. That means any memories or any other thought about them! The wounds will turn into scars and you will come out of this with new boundaries, a new voice and your old belief system back in place but so much stronger. DON’T allow them to have a hold on your complete future! No/minimal contact ALWAYS! Greg
Narcissists blame and project – It is YOUR fault always no matter what, and you DIDN’T even do anything but somehow there is an argument that came out of the blue.
From my Book – From Charm to Harm and Everything else in Between with a Narcissist! @http://www.amazon.com
Narcissists simply bait you with many conversations in an effort to constantly manage you down and keep you confused. Just with a normal conversation it almost seems like they are testing you or even mocking you. They are gauging your reactions to see just how far they can push you to get a chaotic reaction. They want you to react emotionally and after they bait you to get a reaction they will tell YOU to calm down, or say you are overreacting and make you internalize their disappointment with you. They want the upper hand always to feel in control so the whole point of this is to get you unhinged and they can and will get down and dirty to achieve this. Conversations are always a competition with them just like everything else with a Narcissist. Think of it like this, it is like the Narcissist purposely punches you in the face and then gets angry at YOU for reacting to that punch!
They will use actions as well to drive their point home with you. Suddenly they are not paying attention to you, or they are very eager to get you off of the phone. They will cancel a plan or just disappear without an explanation – basically isolating you and silencing you for no apparent reason. This sucks you RIGHT BACK IN and when they return you calmly confront their actions and receive a resounding “I’m SICK of always arguing with you – WHAT IS WRONG WITH YOU??” Well you never started an argument in the first place, you were only reacting in a manner to create some sort of cohesive understanding AND peace, but the Narcissist hones in on your confusion (and reactions) and labels them as arguments. They have successfully manipulated you right into their game to make you believe that YOU are to blame and a defective person. They will more than likely verbalize this to you as well!
So how do they do this? Let’s use the example that they cheated on you or they are just being cruel to you. They won’t directly address the truth or reality of the situation but instead they will bring up something totally unrelated from the past that YOU have done wrong. It is sort of like a comparison to divert from their actions and basically justify what they have done. It is their way of keeping score, but they are always the winners because they are the scorekeeper. Perhaps you sincerely admitted to something you had done wrong in your past and you shared it. They will hold you hostage to this and accountable to whatever it was YOU did (even if it didn’t concern them) and then whatever they did really isn’t all that bad compared to your actions. So don’t you even DARE to hold them accountable or complain about what they did because they are going to bring up your indiscretion(s) from the past! This is not normal resolution this is deceptive manipulation on their part to shore up their lies and actions and a Narcissistic DIVERSION.
Again all of this is done in an effort to put YOU on the defensive to avert all responsibility and accountability. In any situation where they are threatened by exposure of the reality of what they are the Narcissist has to SHAME you in a manner to stay in control. They have no shame for their actions though and I mean NONE whatsoever. They only transfer their defective qualities onto and into you and basically create strong labels that they attach to you that justify WHY they do what they do. This is really projection. They are transferring their own flaws onto you as well as seeking a reaction that basically confuses or confounds you to drive the point home. They HAVE to respond because they can’t just sit there and allow what they feel are blatant attacks ON THEM because they do NO WRONG! They HAVE to force you into submission so you internalize their attacks as reality of who YOU are. You are not any of this – AGAIN this is part of their extreme manipulation techniques – and one of many!
If you were able to pull yourself out of the confusion when they are doing this you would clearly see that their reactions are so delusional and a huge defense mechanism to hide the very truth from themselves and everybody else. Educating ourselves about the truth of what a Narcissist is AND does is one of the most important aspects of recovery. It is the bridge that takes us to recovery. To heal we must understand, we must expel everything that we internalized from the manipulative Narcissist and their abuse. We have to realize that these are non-functioning individuals that are predators. There NEVER was a relationship with them, there NEVER will be a relationship with them, AND they are NOT capable of having a REAL relationship with anyone!
Along the same lines they do not change after we depart from them. The first revelation we must ABSOLUTELY accept is that the Narcissist will never give you any satisfaction with any question as to ‘why’ or any closure as well UNLESS they want something more from us and it will only be more distorted manipulation. They probably ran off to new supply to do what they do best and basically that is extort the next person that will be in your same shoes one day so let them be where they are. You will need to let go of thinking that you need them to understand what you are going through or that you will be successful at changing them in some manner and get that validation – NO they will only manipulate you more and use more projection to always make YOU out to be the person at fault. They are securing new supply and you reached your expiration date. ANY attempt at a connection would pull you right back into the trauma that you are trying to heal from as well as giving your power away and setting yourself up for more abuse! The Narcissist is not any part of your recovery as looking to them for anything to help the process along. No/minimal contact to truly get the clarity you need to move forward! Greg
The truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth as far as it concerns a Narcissist and a relationship of any type with them!
From my Book – From Charm to Harm and Everything else in Between with a Narcissist! @http://www.amazon.com
What I am trying to do here is to explain why the educational process is so extremely important to recovery. I am not using the word education in a manner that only describes the Narcissist or abuse and “there you have it!’ Instead I am trying to emphasize the importance of education being vital to breaking the abuse messages that play in your mind, as well as defining the manner that a Narcissist drives this abuse straight into your heart, soul, mind and world. We must understand what we DON’T understand to move on and up to a level of recovery. We must accept that they are what they are, move on with the truth and do some damage control and heal – it is the ONLY option!
Targets/victims get so lost in the day to day managing down that they fail to see just how effective the Narcissist is at distorting their reality (the manipulation) and how it changes you. You are never having a REAL conversation with a REAL person. This is the essence of ABUSE and how we become desensitized and our reality distorted. Everything a Narcissist says (and does) has NOTHING to do with a normal ‘back and forth’ conversation between two normal people! You (target/victim) are COMMUNICATING and believing that the Narcissist is reciprocating, but they are observing and scheming through your words and actions. They are drawing information from you in a manner to know your strengths and weaknesses and how to use those against you. They may reply in what seems like a normal manner but they are actually interrogating you to draw out what they can and then they distort what they can so you never have a cohesive conversation with them. You will always find yourself WONDERING about something or other. The end result is that they have you where they want you. Along with that they employ so many techniques to confuse you, or make you question what you said, or basically always feeling like you have to explain yourself. That is how they gain the upper hand! Beyond the love bombing which was just another grand scheme to manipulate you into the abuse with words and actions, the remainder of the relationship will consume you with always feeling the need to explain AND defend yourself.
There is no such thing as individuality with a Narcissist and they are not going to allow you to have needs or be anything but what they want you to be. The KEY point here is that the love you FEEL (conned into) connects you to a Narcissist as well as blinds you to the abuse because they dangle that love in front of you and make you basically beg to get it back. That is purely behavioral modification using withholding techniques to change you to accept their disordered abuse! Remember that they are employing their disguise to con everyone around them to get what they want, but the primary 24/7 supply suffers the most from this abuse. They have other sources of supply on the side to feed their out of control lifestyle, and minions that sing their praises. How sad and destructive for the primary 24/7 target/victim to believe that what they have with a Narcissist is LOVE when it is nothing more than a place for the Narcissist to have constant supply as well as a refuge.
The dynamics of a relationship with them is built solely on the premise that you are an object to this distorted creature for as long as they want you to be OR until they have extorted everything they can from you, OR you uncover the truth about them. Unfortunately you are coming from what you believe is a real relationship with them so you are blinded to the day to day subtle manipulation and abuse. Love, commitment and growth are your goals, but slowly but surely your emotions and thoughts are eroded away until you lose the person you were for so many years. The Narcissist doesn’t ever stop the abuse because they need to devalue and discard you and they manipulate you into temporary insanity. They push and push you so that you react in ways that MAKE you out to be the ‘crazy one’ and then they use that against you. This is what they are and what they do. There is absolutely NOTHING you could have done to change any of this. Narcissists are basically a predator with an agenda to secure its prey, feed off of it, devalue it, destroy it, and then move on to new hunting grounds to find another person to prey on. BUT they are so good at this game that few see through them until it is too late! Add to the fact that a Narcissist will destroy each of their targets/victims integrity to cover their tracks by using the insanity they forced you into AGAINST you. The world is none the wiser to these criminals. Try explaining your incredulous experience and you have sealed your faith as being the ‘crazy one’ just like the Narcissist has described you to everyone and BEHIND your back. The Narcissist has everything covered as far as the abuse is concerned.
Targets/victims that are abused have to understand that the abuse doesn’t have anything to do with them and the actions of the Narcissist are not their fault. What you are feeling and reacting to is the many years of the brainwashing or manipulation (same thing.) You are NOT this person but instead a brainwashed individual that has had your dignity striped away from you by a highly disordered and destructive abuser. This is one of the hardest things to realize that there is absolutely nothing you could have done that would have any influence on changing this creature. Targets/victims of emotional/psychological abuse often think otherwise hoping they can fix things and only end up in this vortex of blaming themselves as being the defective one as well as the reason for the failing state of the relationship. Again this is the Narcissist doing what they do so well, confusing you and using mind control to make you accept their disordered agenda. It is the only way these creatures could function in our world and that is through lies and manipulation, otherwise they would be in jail for what they really are.
Just some reality and the truth! With a Narcissist you will give until you are emotionally, spiritually and physically bankrupt and receive little or nothing in return AND you will lose yourself completely. Just take a hard look at yourself today and then compare that with your state of being when you first met your Narcissistic partner. You are more than likely psychologically and emotionally worse off and feeling totally numb and a different person. Narcissists are thieves and once they have taken all you have to give, you are history and they discard you and move on to new and plentiful supply.
PLEASE, please internalize that they waged a psychological war that had an agenda with you from day one! Narcissists are amoral and you CAN’T engage with them in any moral or conscience based issues and expect to achieve anything or better yet win. They DON’T love they abuse and extort. Narcissists have absolutely no sense of guilt or remorse for their actions. They abide by no rules or laws. They aren’t REAL! There is NO WAY you can shame them into accepting responsibility for their thoughtless and CRUEL approach to other people especially yourself. They feel COMPLETELY entitled in this world. If you are looking for revenge then you will never achieve any satisfaction in that arena either. They don’t connect to your thoughts or words as they concern any opinion that you may have about them, nor do they care. You are an object and supply and it begins and ends there! This truth is what you need to move forward, THAT and knowing that you are NOT anything they manipulated you into believing you are. These two truths are what will start you off on your journey to recovery, that and no/minimal contact. Remember you are the sane and healthy one here and an amazing human being that can overcome this abuse. Greg
Knowledge is power and education is the key to that knowledge concerning this abuse. By understanding the different components of this abuse you will find your way to closure with the knowledge that it WASN’T you.
The most insidious aspect of living with an angry or abusive partner is not the obvious nervous reactions to the shouting, name-calling, criticism or other demeaning behavior. It is the adaptations you make to try to prevent those painful episodes that become the standard of life you come to accept. You ‘walk on eggshells’ to keep the peace or a semblance of connection. You become especially vulnerable to the negative effects of this ‘walking on eggshells’ due to the greater vulnerability to the attacks over time. Many targets/victims engage in constant self-editing and self-criticism to keep from pushing the abusers buttons. Psychologically and emotionally abused targets/victims will second guess themselves so much so that they feel as though they have lost themselves in a deep dark hole. You will tend to isolate yourself more and more, losing yourself in work, hobbies or anything. In my personal situation, I built things, added a room to my house, built decks, pergolas, learned to carve, etc. Luckily these things were wonderful additions to my life, but nonetheless they were my diversion from this raging Narcissist and what kept me sane!
See if any of these descriptions fit you:
- You frequently wonder if you are a good enough sibling, spouse, employee, friend, child or loving partner. You feel looked down upon and believe you have something wrong with you.
- You can’t understand why you aren’t happier when it seems you have so many good things going on in your life. It feels like you have the weight of the world on your shoulders, BUT FROM WHAT?
- You are constantly second-guessing yourself or everything you do. It is seriously difficult for you to make easy decisions or move forward with many normal things in life.
- You constantly question yourself believing you may be too sensitive, overreacting to things, an angry person, distorted in your thoughts and actions, or even believing you have some sort of issues that you need professional help with.
- You often feel confused, fearful, forgetful, numb, or displaced in life and you start to isolate yourself from the world.
- You know something is terribly wrong, but you can never put your finger on it or able to express what it is to yourself.
- You start lying to avoid always having to explain yourself, or to avoid the put-downs and reality twists from your partner, friend, or family member. You don’t feel solid in the world, instead you feel very much displaced.
- You are always apologizing for your actions because you have come to believe that you are wrong and just not normal like everyone else.
- You buy things like clothing, furnishings, or other personal purchases with your partner (Narcissist) in mind, thinking about what THEY would like instead of what you would want. You have lost your own internalized love for yourself and you stop caring for yourself and ignore your own personal needs. Instead of fixing yourself you put your energy into your abuser so they will recognize your worth again.
- You frequently make excuses for your significant other to friends or family as if you feel a need to explain or justify something or other about them to protect your secret.
- You also find yourself withholding information about what you are going through from friends and family so you don’t have to explain or make excuses. You want everyone to believe life is good and everything is perfect when you are holding on by a thread.
- You think twice before bringing up certain seemingly innocent and normal topics of conversation with your abuser or always walking on eggshells to avoid more damaging punishment. This has become your new normal or just existing without being the individual you use to be.
- Before your partner comes home, you run through a checklist in your head to anticipate anything you might have done wrong that day. Everything has to maintain a level of peace designed to survive in this relationship, but you are not any part of it in a normal and functioning way.
- You have the sense that you used to be a very different person that was more confident, more fun-loving, more relaxed. Now you are a shell of that person and feel that you are damaged instead.
- You avoid speaking directly to your significant other sibling, friend, spouse, etc., for fear of retribution just for expressing words or having a thought worth hearing.
- You feel as though you can’t do anything right at all so you basically become subservient.
- Other people try to protect you from your significant other or warn you about situations they are aware of but you somehow justify it and avoid the truth. You feel the need to protect them and instead imprison yourself because you feel so damaged and nobody could ever want you, so you hang on for dear life.
- You find yourself feeling anxious, and short tempered with people you’ve always gotten along with before. You basically avoid many people and isolate yourself within these thoughts as it concerns the outside world.
- You feel hopelessness and lack the exuberance you once had for life, or just feel you are going through the motions of life and feeling numb and anxious. You are no longer a real and functioning person, instead you are a product of dehumanization through the devaluation you have endured, but you are unaware that this blame was intentionally administered onto you to disable you in this manner.
An emotionally abusive partner (Narcissist) controls their target by manipulating them with fear or harm, isolation, and deprivation. He/she (the Narcissist) threatens or implies that he/she might do something drastic like leave you, or separate you from the things you love (like family, children or your home) and they will do this. An emotionally abusive person controls their partner by manipulating with strong messages of failure or worthlessness across every spectrum of your life and even smear your good integrity to gain support from other people.
A typical defense against the shame and pain that is inflicted from a Narcissist is to attempt to avoid causing anything to upset them or basically accepting their behavior as being OK for the greater good of fixing the relationship which is basically denying the truth that their behavior is horrendous and even sadistic. We can never forget cruel humiliation or sadistic and destructive behaviors from a loved one. That is the very reason we tend to make the same mistakes over and over again hoping that things will change if we change or stay silent, but ‘things’ don’t change and we end up changing and enabling more abuse and losing ourselves completely.
In many ways, emotional abuse can be more psychologically harmful than physical abuse. There are a couple of reasons for this. Even in the most violent families, the incidents tend to follow a particular cycle. Early in the physical abuse cycle, a violent outburst is followed by a honeymoon period of remorse, attention, affection, and generosity, but not genuine compassion. Emotional abuse, on the other hand, tends to happen every day. The effects are more harmful and disabling because they are so frequent or on a consistent basis. The other factor that makes emotional abuse so devastating is the greater likelihood that targets/victims will blame themselves. If someone hits you, it’s easier to see that he or she is the problem, but if the abuse is subtle like saying or implying that you’re ugly, a bad parent, stupid, incompetent, not worth attention, or that no one could love you, then you are more likely to think you ARE the problem. Emotional abuse seems more personal than physical abuse, more about you as a person, more about your spirit, belief systems, worthiness, etc., AND most importantly It makes love hurt. Both abuses are wrong and equally destructive to a person or better yet any and all forms of abuse are dehumanizing – nobody deserves to be abused and there is no reason that can justify abuse!
To truly move forward to recovery you can’t make your abuser (the Narcissist) the focal point of your life AND your recovery. They are what they are and you have had personal experience which more than defines their character and agenda! You have to make YOU the focal point of YOUR life. This time of grieving, healing, and regrouping with you is an opportunity to get real about the relationship that has just ended and you have to look at you and your relationship with open eyes and the reality that it was abuse. So many times, I have heard targets, victims, and survivors say that they want to be able to get past it all, to move on, and they want it all to just be over with so they can live again. The wanting is only part of the battle, a very important part, but the rest of it takes longer and demands introspection, education, support and the need to accept that this Narcissist was AND always is a potential danger if you let them be any part of your thoughts OR life. There is no magical kiss from the prince/princess Narcissist that will awaken you from this this doom, because they are the one that gave you the apple that poisoned you in the first place! Your own care, love, and self-compassion will awaken you and return you back to a fulfilling and real life! Please start with no/minimal contact to get clarity back into your life so you can move forward with education, support, healing and rejoin life where you belong! Greg
Our stories about this abuse are so incredulous to anybody that hears them and more than often they may turn away instead of offer support. Unfortunately anyone that has NEVER personally experienced this abuse can NEVER understand what we are explaining and it is too foreign for them to offer a real perspective that will help.
MOST PEOPLE have no knowledge or understanding of the emotional and psychological abuse or of a Narcissist as well as the effects of the trauma. It is akin to a prisoner of war being released back into captivity to assume life as usual when that is not even near a possibility or reality as it concerns being a prisoner of this abuse! If you do speak out about the abuse it seems more like you stand in judgment from most of the people nearest and dearest to you.
To the victim of this abuse, everything is one huge confusing blur. It is like someone has wrapped you up in layer upon layer of darkness, fear, angst, confusion, depression, anxiety, pain, sleeplessness and many things you have never experienced before. You feel like you are completely disabled. You are forgetful and just don’t seem to care. ALL OF THIS IS TRAUMA from being abused. You probably don’t sleep well and if you do you have nightmares. How do you fix this? How do you get them out of your mind? How do you move forward? Who do you turn to? People listen but they don’t see the severity of the situation! You are reaching out to a world that doesn’t understand how debilitating this abuse is because they don’t see a black and blue mark on your body or a broken arm but the truth is that you are so lost in all of this wondering who you can turn to for HELP! You have been injured but the scars are on the inside where nobody can see them so your abuse is INVISIBLE to everyone but yourself. So is it real or what the heck is going on. IT IS REAL – enough said!
Emotionally or psychologically abused people tend to be cast off or even judged harshly. The chronically abused person is shrouded with a cloud of helplessness, hopelessness and passivity from the entrapment of the abuse in their past. There seems to be no viable or safe place for them to secure acceptance or the help that they need. There is anxiety and depression that has surfaced, physical ailments and complaints, subdued anger, extreme frustration, isolation and loneliness from the people closest to them because of the extreme need to express themselves over and over again to get answers or the validation to understand this – so the target/victim is subject to more condemnation as well. We seem like we are crazy but it is from the trauma and the vulnerability of being abused. You are reaching out for help but it seems like everyone is turning away.
This type of abuse has exposed you to horrible manipulation, betrayal, resounding fear and terror because of the coercive methods from the Narcissist as well as dehumanizing control. Most people just presume that THEY would show greater courage, strength, and resistance if THEY were the victim and in similar circumstances. They will just tell the target/victim to move on and allow time to heal the wounds. What does this message say or do to the target/victim? It makes them BELIEVE that they ARE the source of their own problems and again isolated and damaged just like the Narcissist said they were. Time alone does not heal these wounds! Unfortunately for the target/victim there is the tendency where people account for the target/victim’s behavior as flaws in THEIR personality as if they gave into or deserved the abuse because they did not leave the Narcissist. Nobody is listening or better yet HEARING the real truth of your situation because it sounds so incredulous so the pleas for help are lost with the misinterpretation of your situation. Once AGAIN the target/victim is left with more isolation, damage, vulnerable AND alone to figure this out on their own. This is a very lonely and scary place to be!
It is not the target/victim JUST grieving the loss of love, it is the grieving of the dehumanization and subjugation from their perpetrator or the Narcissist. The target/victim bundles everything up and somehow even blames themselves as if they created everything they are feeling as well as deserve it. There may be biological children involved, financial ruin and character assassination waiting for the target/victim as well from the Narcissist’s smear campaign. This is probably the darkest time of the target/victim’s life having to deal with the total devaluation, discard, and devastation from someone that they BELIEVED loved them and cared for them! This is betrayal so hideous that a person that has never experienced this abuse could never even start to realize the damage that is done to a target/victim. Hideous
Psychology even has tendency to blame the victim because researchers/clinicians seem to seek an explanation for the perpetrator’s (Narcissist’s) crimes by trying to define this abuse through the (target/victims) supposed personality defects and missing the mark completely especially as it concerns the trauma from this abuse that needs immediate attention and clarity. This is abuse by a personality disordered individual and that is where the blame belongs and NOT on the victim.
When victims are entrapped by manipulative persuasion or brain-washing rather than physical abuse, it always seems that the target/victim is PREDISPOSED to ALLOWING themselves to be abused. THERE IS NO CONSISTENT PROFILE out there that supports any evidence that any target/victim is predisposed to enter exploitive and abusive relationships. There are reasons we may have gotten involved because of a temporary life crisis or recent loss, when we are feeling unhappy, alienated, or lonely, but it wasn’t because we were looking to be abused.
I do want to clarify one point that children that have been raised by Narcissistic parents have a propensity to end up in relationships with Narcissists but not because they want to but more because they have been raised in this type of negative environment and it is familiar to them – but it doesn’t mean that they look for it or are predisposed to seek out ABUSE – they are the product of it! That in itself is a crime or blaming the wrong person in the case of Narcissistic abuse. Children that are born into this abuse are true victims of this abuse and so undeserving of the losses they experience throughout their life. It seems to be forgotten that a Narcissist’s abuse is THEIR own disordered behavior PERIOD!
Loved ones, family and friends who have never experienced prolonged terror have no understanding of the coercive methods or control from a Narcissist so they presume that they would show greater courage and resistance than the target/victim showed. This is a bad and harsh judgment that invalidates the reality of this abuse for the target/victim. This has unfortunately become a common tendency to account for the victim’s behavior by seeking flaws in their personality or character. This is NOT about a target/victim’s passivity or complicity. This is psychological terrorism but without a cage or prison walls around the victim that defines what was more like being a brain-washed prisoner of war. With this abuse victims are judged lovingly but harshly by the very people they need! Loving, healthy, normal and psychologically sound people can indeed be coerced, extorted, and abused in subliminal and dehumanizing ways by an abusive Narcissist and many victims are proof to that.
With emotional and psychological battering victims are entrapped by extreme manipulative and psychological persuasion over a lengthy period of time and that needs to be desensitized for them to move forward. What was the nature of our perpetrator when we met them? Did they have us at gunpoint forcing us into this psychological terrorism or did they offer us something so very familiar, normal, trustworthy and welcoming called LOVE? Yes they did and if that doesn’t define a predator I don’t know what does! I have met very many wonderful friends from all over the world since I started writing about this abuse that I interact with daily. They are some of the strongest people I have ever encountered. There isn’t anything about them that shouts out to me that they allowed or wanted their abuse! They are full of love, empathy and high functioning individuals!
Well let’s go to the source of your abuse, a Narcissist. Now let’s define this Narcissist. They are mentally unbalanced and unhealthy and basically not a fully functioning human being so with that thought in mind they are quite capable of poisoning our minds and harming our reality – JUST FACT. Whether they have a disdain for all things human or they are cruel, evil, despicable or whatever THEY ARE TOXIC and destructive to us. If you educate yourself and understand what we lovingly call their ‘arsenal of tools’ it will spell out their agenda and a definite pattern of what all Narcissists do to ALL of their targets/victims. The key words that describes the whole cycle of abuse is love-bombing, devaluation, discard and I always add DESTROY! In a nutshell they are the reason that our reality has been so distorted and disabled.
The journey to recovery is now a process because we were unconsciously living and dealing with all the destructive messages we internalized and validated as our reality. We must seek out education about this abuse and the truth about our situation as a key to unlock the door to our recovery. Yes those messages are going to be in our head for a good while BUT we have to create a healthy balance and desensitize them. What this means is that we have to move into a place where it is possible for us to recognize that a person HAS betrayed us in a manner to control us through mental abuse. We have to think about it in terms to validate the truth of the situation, but not to try to dissect the Narcissist and put our energy into trying to get into their heads. We spent a great deal of time trying to fix or basically heal them and we gave away too much of ourselves. Turn this around and accept the truth that they are completely disordered and put that healing power back into yourself.
The recovery process is so multi-dimensional that it means that there are really no simple answers to the question “how do I stop the pain and what do I do to move forward with my recovery?” There are answers that we need to have in the beginning of our recovery but they are basically concerning the educational process and a tried and true direction so we are ‘in the know’ about this disorder and can get our ‘ah ha’ moment or the truth that this is ABUSE then moving forward from there and looking deep inside to heal the many levels of this extreme betrayal as well as the damage to our mental well-being. Recovery is a process that requires grieving the love, the loss of much of our life, the acceptance of the truth that is so foreign to us, and then a reprocessing or a rebirthing to enter the world once more with our trust in tact after this horrible attack on our life. That can be accomplished by setting up strong boundaries that now include the knowledge that there are people out there that are so disordered that they will intentionally walk into our lives and create this type of horrendous damage that can destroy our life from such a disordered person that will lie with such veracity just to control another person so they can extort what they can. Once you have experienced this type of abuse you will know the signs of this abuse and NEVER allow yourself to ever maintain any type of relationship with a toxic person again. This abuse traumatizes the victim and that trauma will lock a victim up and keep them from trusting the world and that is a huge part of recovery or desensitizing this trauma. You can and will recover from this abuse because you are resilient. You are that strong and amazing but in the process there will be the extreme pain and vulnerability from this horrendous loss but you recover from this day by day. Define each of those days NOT by the pain but by the strength that you have made it to another day and one day closer to recovery. NEVER turn back to look at the Narcissist for answers or make them a constant part of your recovery – put the energy ONLY into yourself and not reliving and victimizing yourself by reprocessing the abuse over and over again. No/Minimal contact is the ONLY path to a real recovery! Greg
A little deeper perspective into empowering yourself AFTER abuse – the importance of reinserting yourself back into life!
Whatever that Narcissist has said to you that has deeply hurt you or wounded you is not a real observation, it was your vulnerabilities that you shared with them when you trusted them. They twisted, tweaked, and distorted these vulnerabilities to use against you and define you. They were so supportive in the beginning, but that was also to gain your trust and the knowledge of your weaknesses to use against you. You open up your heart along with all of your wounds and gave them the opportunity to find any and all of your weaknesses AND they are looking for them. They DO NOT have the ability to understand pain, sorrow, being vulnerable or apply empathy – they only want access to your weaknesses to use them against you – CONTROL. This is what we have to heal within us – those weaknesses that they have constantly pointed out because they are real and within us and now they have made them come to the surface so much so that we lost trust in our own reality. They are master game players and used their keen perception to always be on top of their game. They took these weaknesses and embellished them to even make you think you were mentally ill and even fear yourself and your way of thinking. It is a very sick game that these Narcissists play, BUT it is a game that requires other players and you have to totally opt out of participating! They will attack you at any and every level they can, even making fun of you physically and they can be VERY cruel! But the point here is that you must take their power completely away from them to get out of this battle to regain a healthy perspective about your life again and that comes from empowering yourself and reentering into a world that may scare you after this abuse. Recovery is about YOU and only YOU – not the Narcissist and you because they were never a REAL or healthy and functioning part of you so you can’t make them a part of your recovery. The Narcissist is personality disordered and they are contagious in a manner that infects people and disables them – that infection will only spread if you allow the source to be any part of your life, thinking and now your recovery.
Some simple messages to start you out on your way to recovery:
1) It is about reinserting healthy messages back into your mind and life by desensitizing and deprogramming the negative ones from the abuse or they will run in the back of your mind forever. Abuse doesn’t define you, it defines the actions of the abuser! Start to program your mind and life around the truth that you are and always were a deserving and good person, nothing has changed there. YES your reality was distorted in a manner that has disabled you but your spirit is able to recover from this as it is meant to. You can unlearn the negativity by purging it out and replacing it with positivity to re-enter the world as a whole person again with some new lessons and boundaries concerning your future and your life. This is your goal to heal so your life is surrounded by what you truly deserve. Don’t allow yourself to pay a debt back to a corrupt person that set you up so that they could yield a huge return from their investment in you or their big con job. Ask yourself how you want to feel after this abuse? Of course your answer is that you want full recovery and to feel complete about life again as you did before this Narcissist came into your life! Just watch how you improve every day you practice this as well as putting distance between yourself and everything Narcissist! It is little steps to get yourself there.
2) We must also understand that change is essential to recovery, OR we must be willing to change for our own well-being! You definitely have the power to make any and all the changes you want and need as well as the power to undo the damage that was inflicted onto you. Right now this is very new to you and you are vulnerable so you will not accomplish a quick or immediate recovery because it is a process. Sure, you may not be able to make strong decisions and changes right here and now because you may not even know exactly what you want and need. It is about small steps because your belief system has been harmed and disabled by the emotional and psychological aspects of this abuse. At least add some self-compassion to the formula as well – you deserve it! There is huge price we pay because of the abuse and that is the emotional and psychological burden that sits squarely on our mind and in our heart that we must purge out of us to regain trust for a good world that DOES exist out there.
3) FIND and get all of the support you need. Beg, borrow and steal it if you have to, but get there and start to reason this out with the goal to move on and forward. Listen to and hear the stories of other abuse victims and survivors. Use your voice as the tool to get support. Seek out professional counseling if you feel stuck in a dark place and too vulnerable to function. Think about this as if it was a physical injury to your body and how you would or better yet MUST seek out help to recover. This is an injury to your mind and that is a much deeper wound that requires a great deal of attention and support to heal. There are groups that are probably within your area that you can attend. Survivors often in turn form groups that support other targets/victims of Domestic Violence and make no mistake as it concerns emotional and psychological abuse because it is Domestic Violence. The important thing here is to seek out professionals and survivors that have real experience with this type of abuse as well as with trauma or PTSD (Post Traumatic Stress Disorder) that can be an outcome of many years of this type of abuse.
4) Get REAL information that concerns itself with Narcissistic abuse. The wealth of knowledge you gain by educating yourself will benefit your recovery and give you that ‘ah ha’ moment to release from the Narcissist. You will see that these abusers have a similar pattern as if they all read the same book on ‘How to be a Narcissist.’ From there you will assimilate the information in a manner that enables you to clearly see that this was never about you, but actually about them. You will also see that YOU are not the only one that fell for this trap, nor are you deficient in some way as if you allowed it, mentally ill, blameworthy as if this WAS your fault, worthless or any of the Narcissist’s target words that managed you down. Introspection will allow you to look inwardly to create new boundaries and to look at your part in all of this.
5) Look at the real goodness out there that you have ignored while you were completely giving yourself away to this Narcissist. Look for the real miracles that are really all around you and get involved in such a manner that these wonderful things will surround you with goodness and bring you back to loving the world as you once did. There is no room in your heart and mind for thinking about that Narcissist or any ‘what if’s’ concerning any type of relationship with them, reconciliation or closure. They just don’t exist as a real person that you could be any part of or love. Let them go so you can find unconditional love in your world. Even though you are hurt and in pain focus on something/anything that will yield the smallest bit of self-compassion and goodness back into your life. DO NOT isolate yourself from people because you are only feeding those insecurities from the abuse. You are an amazing person that belongs out there in the world with people. You don’t have to hide to recover, so get out because the sunshine and warmth out in the world will do you good. You don’t have to do anything but show the world the person you are. If you are sad you don’t have to speak, but you can smile and make even the smallest connection with life and people. Just don’t lock yourself up in isolation. Change your routine because it needs refreshed! Again there are miracles out there! Keep your health in check because the many years of abuse has stressed you out physically. Maybe employ a walk in your routine, but get those endorphins activated because they all charge those brain cells up with a little euphoria! Take the focus back on your life while you are healing and allow a little bit of newness and joy to get in there as well. Try it and you will see that what I say is real and good for you! You are starting a new journey that will lead you right back into life again where you belong!
Will this heal you completely? No but it gets you into the direction you need to be. Recovering from this abuse is recovering from those horrid messages of shame, blame, fear, worthlessness and many other negative things or things that took your power away. How do you replace your power? By empowering yourself with the truth and positive messages that will naturally purge all of that negativity out of you and replacing it with real truth and positive new adventures that are nowhere near the Narcissist-Land that you once resided at.
Today I spent some time on the phone with a friend that I am helping through their abuse and to get to recovery. I said if you allow yourself to go on this journey of recovery you will awaken and feel things you have forgotten you could feel and life will grow from there once you are out of this darkness that has claimed you. You will see such a clear picture about these abusers and how this abuse actually does darken every aspect of your life until it removes all the light that use to be there. I went on to say that today I have such a clear picture and realize that everything that my Narcissist ever said or did had some sort of lie or betrayal attached to it and EVERYTHING was a lie. I went on to say that I realized how my reality was blind sighted and how that damaged me. It is not just the emotional connection, it is such an extreme betrayal of everything that is good in life. My Narcissist can only be defined as very defective and derelict. In my personal situation with this Narcissist, the truth WAS a lie, and all the lies became the truth and what a twisted and distorted reality that is for a good and loving person full of empathy. It was a horrible experience from a sadistic person, but an incredible journey getting back to healthy! Start with no/minimal contact and take this journey back to you! Reclaim your life. Greg
Searching for the truth and reality as to WHAT is going on in your relationship and WHY you are feeling so out of sorts or basically like life is just too overwhelming – is it you or is it a Narcissist that is making you feel this way and the stages that get you there.
From my Book – From Charm to Harm and Everything else in Between with a Narcissist! @Amazon.com
You are exhausted from the constant turmoil of this relationship, because of the lies, betrayal and the abuse. You are constantly walking on eggshells, living in fear or setting off his/her rage that seems to happen too often. You are lost and feeling so confused and nothing near the way you use to feel about life.
Here are a few stages that you have probably done or gone through in response to the way you are feeling about your connection or relationship to the person that is making you feel so off or abusing you!
1) The Realization Stage. This is when your questions begin to get answered and you now have a name for what you have been dealing with all this time. You begin to research everything you can find on Narcissism. Although you feel better that you know, the sense of betrayal begins to painfully sink in. Unfortunately, you start to feel angry at yourself for letting it go on for so long.
2) The Anger Stage. The full impact of what you went through hits home and all hell breaks loose! You are angry at the Narcissist but also at yourself. Anger is uncomfortable, but it is a necessary step towards healing. At first, it feels like an erupting volcano but then it decreases and you can focus on how to get through this. Anger is a natural reaction to being betrayed, demeaned, dehumanized, and harmed by someone BUT it is important that you do NOT live with this anger forever.
3) Taking Affirmative Action Stage. This is when you begin to effectively focus your new found knowledge into making life decisions. This is also when you begin to learn and practice REAL techniques on how to protect yourself from the Narcissist or set up boundaries. This is the stage where you may decide on divorce, relocating, changing jobs, or other lifestyle changes. This is a time of great upheaval, because the Narcissist knows that the ‘gig is up’ and the Narcissist will fight you tooth and nail to win. This is a crucial stage in healing, because it is at this stage that the Narcissist will also try to “put on the charm” AGAIN in an attempt to return things to how they were. However, when the charm doesn’t work, the Narcissist can be very vicious at this stage so be prepared for the ‘smear campaign’ that they will use to destroy your integrity and cause a huge amount of damage that will make YOU out to be the abusive person to protect themselves.
4) The Fallout Stage. You become more comfortable in your knowledge of how to deal with the Narcissist. It is where you begin to forgive yourself and begin to feel better about yourself and your abilities. You are actively planning your future, getting to know you again, and you notice how much better you feel, physically and emotionally, being WAY from the Narcissist. Although you begin to get your confidence back, you may still experience the waves of the prior stages or triggers that seem to come in cycles, but these will diminish in intensity over time. This abuse is extremely traumatizing and that is what causes these triggers to return to you!
5) The Mirroring Stage. Not everyone goes through this stage. This is when you mirror the Narcissist’s behavior back at them, effectively scaring them off. It allows some people to siphon off the anger and project it back to the person who caused it. It is quite effective in scaring off the Narcissist, but sometimes it takes many sessions of “mirroring” before the stubborn Narcissist finally “gets it”. Unfortunately for many victims, many Narcissists aren’t willing to accept that it is over if they don’t WIN and they (the Narcissist) continually tries to get back under the victim’s skin using guilt, fear, pity, threats, violence and financial abuse. Some Narcissists keep coming back seeking more Narcissistic supply. DO NOT, under any circumstances, give the Narcissist any Narcissistic supply because they will drag you right back into the abuse!
6) Realization, Apathy and Self-Compassion. Once you effectively block all means of communication with the Narcissist, protect yourself from them, gain knowledge and confidence in yourself, you then reach a stage of realization that there was nothing you could have done to prevent the nightmare that you just lived through. You start looking working toward your new future and close the door on the Narcissist. The most effective way to do this is with apathy and self-compassion. If the Narcissist is still trying to keep you engaged, you simply don’t respond or display any outward emotions toward the Narcissist. You know the truth concerning the chaos this Narcissist uses to set you off, manage you down and disable you so you ignore these messages the Narcissist sends you. Basically you are taking the Narcissist’s power away by empowering yourself. This will in turn bring you to a point that you will completely remove the Narcissist from your mind and your life forever – this is when you concentrate ONLY on you and recovery – basically you are discarding this Narcissist forever and working on YOU.
A Narcissist wants to be able to evoke an emotional response from you. If they can’t make you love them, they will try to make you hate them. If you don’t give them anything, eventually, they will move on to the next victim as they have to get their narcissistic supply or fix. This stage can take some time, because as we know, the Narcissist does not give up on precious supply sources easily.
Narcissists are master manipulators – and they manipulate with an agenda that is all about PERSONAL GAIN. The world is their playground and they feel righteous to take whatever they can because they are VERY entitled to everything and anything. Laws and rules weren’t made for them to follow because they are above reprise for what they do to people. People are only pawns in their world that are meant to serve or service the Narcissist. We all have our roles that again are designed to support the Narcissist’s every need. There magnanimous false self could never achieve this royal status on their own, so they create and support these virtues they possess with many false personas. They are the costumes they wear so they can con decent people and extort their life and love. They are the most amazing actors and they CAN con the very best. They do this with such acute precision that they are able to “pull the strings” of their victims without detection, and render them helpless. They can isolate a target/victim and make them feel as if they are the MOST important person in the Narcissists life, but in reality the Narcissist has MANY of these so called important people in their lives and we are all serving them. We are all just stepping stones for the Narcissist to get where they want and what they want out of life.
You are in only in denial whenever you consider getting back together with him/her. When you catch yourself replaying those old message of, “He/she is really not that bad. He/she really does love me. I am not perfect either so if we wipe the slate clean and start over again MAYBE this time it will work!” FORGET IT, they are on to new supply with a brand new game. Remember the Narcissist did not love you even in the smallest way. That Narcissist is not capable of loving you or anyone else because deep down they loathe themselves. They only view you as an object to control and to bolster their false image. We are all props that they use in their distorted, twisted fantasy world in which they are special, entitled, above reproach and not subject to the rules of civility and decency most of us abide by, AND in their world they can and will abuse people. We have to GET THIS and then leave it behind and concentrate on us! No/minimal contact is just the reality and we MUST get there to start on a journey which is almost a rebirthing process as well as accept that there are bad people out there. BUT we must be able to trust again with our new boundaries. We must live with this as the new message that is always in the back of our mind. We must create these boundaries to protect ourselves and we MUST find and heal the wounds that allowed this predator to enter into our world. Any pain and anger that you feel is the reality that you are moving forward by accepting the ugly truth. Don’t allow the pain to define your progress, but instead allow the strength that allows you to get through that pain to define your progress instead. Yes you are stronger than you believe because you are still here today and every new day is just more proof of your strength and determination!
This is why letting go can be so hard for the target/victim because there are REAL emotions from REAL love that is strongly attached or mixed in with the psychological abuse and it confounds the recovery process just as it did throughout the entire distorted relationship. It becomes very confusing because even though it was all based on lies and a huge façade somehow you still love them and STILL want to sort through all of the deception to make it right with YOUR concept of real love. This is the abuse born out of the extreme manipulation that the Narcissist created to keep you there. The loving connection you feel or felt was in place FIRST and is now beyond the ‘behavior and circumstances’ of the nuts and bolts of the real abuse or the devaluation and discard phases that appear LATER because of the strong manipulation and brain-washing! That may seem ridiculous to people that have never been conned into a relationship as seamlessly as a Narcissist does to their targets/victims, but they have not experienced what can be best described as psychological rape. You bonded with your trust and love to an abusive creature that doesn’t think twice about harming you, nor do they care if they hurt or destroy you as long as they get what they want. It takes time to clear the fog that surrounds you but once that clarity starts to appear THAT is when you question this relationship and search for the answers and experience these levels of letting go and moving on. It is a process to achieve this clarity but an extremely important step to get OUT of this relationship and to recovery. No/Minimum contact ALWAYS! Greg
This was not a normal relationship by any means and we must accept that as the truth to move forward into recovery and remove the Narcissist from our mind and heart completely even if we MUST be in contact with them because this was abuse and it never gets better it only takes and destroys a person.
From my Book – From Charm to Harm and Everything else in Between with a Narcissist! @Amazon.com
With psychological and emotional abuse you are never really sure that it is actually abuse, because he/she is not being physically abusive or hitting you where you can say that this was/is an ASSAULT (some Narcissist do get physically violent too though)! You can’t be sure that what your partner says counts as abuse or not. So you defer or justify the situation because you are invested in this relationship because of your emotional bond and you take it all as if the Narcissist is just telling the truth as it concerns these things you do wrong! You go on to justify it by thinking perhaps that you are too sensitive, demanding, jealous, or have issues like he/she may have said or a hundred other things. This happened to me in a manner that I tried to justify and fix these ‘off the wall’ crazy making efforts from my Narcissist because I thought it would somehow change in the future if I worked through this. I even had a perspective that my Narcissist had issues that needed my support and love and made it OK and allowed it to continue and that only enabled more abuse. YES my narcissist had many issues, but none of which I could ever fix and I only ended up coming out of the relationship needing fixed instead! The process involves reversing the negative conditioning and desensitizing the horrendous messages that stole your reality, self-esteem, feeling of worth, and goodness.
I am not weak, foolish, dumb or would allow someone to constantly attack me but the manipulation was such that it slowly but surely got me to where I did blame myself. BUT again remember the mix of that love bombing still lingers on because the Narcissist keeps you attached at the hip with that extreme manipulation as well (the love)! We will go the extra mile for the person we love, because isn’t that what unconditional love is all about? We were kept stuck in this process of wondering ‘is it me or isn’t it me’ and we never reconciled any of it so that it all piled up on us until it became insurmountable and disabled us. So what part of this is abuse? The words in all of those negative messages (and yes to what they also extorted from us)! If your partner, spouse, boss, friend or family member’s words humiliate you, judge you, dehumanize you, make you feel small, worthless or lack total respect for you as an individual with a real voice to respond with dignity, respect, and truth, it is wrong, unacceptable, and abuse!
You will devalue YOURSELF if you accept this behavior and allow other people’s abusive judgements of yourself, until you learn how to identify them and get rid of them once and for all. You will confuse these abusive actions with being realistic as it concerns you and your well-being! Someone’s ill placed and destructive judgement as it concerns you is an aberration of your basic rights as a human being. You cannot make or allow ANY assessment of yourself based on the denial of your ability to speak with the truth/freedom and without the fear of their retribution or loss because of someone’s distorted version of the truth as it concerns you – that is condemning you. We all have the basic rights to speak freely, form and maintain good relationships, and live in peace because these are our basic human rights! Unfortunately when you entered into this relationship with a Narcissist you did not know what the future held for you, but with the knowledge you now have you can break the chain and move forward to a healthy and good life.
A Narcissist lives solely with the presumption that their TOTAL convenience ALWAYS comes first. If you try to call them out on this fact you will never really reach them because they are so locked into this process that your words will seem like a foreign language to them. They live in and protect a huge fortress of this self-serving convenience. Everything in their world gets re-construed to fit that convenience. And because the first person they lie to is always themselves, they can be utterly sincere with their words and actions but it is all part of that huge facade. What their convenience basically describes is their vast neediness to take or even steal whatever they want from life coupled with a superior attitude that they deserve it without caring or feeling remorse for how they treat other people. So manipulation, lies, devaluation, and every other tool in their arsenal is fair game to accomplish their goal. Remember that they have no empathy, emotions or any internal mechanisms that form any sort of bond with other humans. Their bond is with external objects and their personal physical needs ONLY. They DO NOT love or even understand it, but they use that word often to pretend they do.
Their sincerity (or extreme charm) is what made them so attractive to you in the first place, but that could be more aptly defined as an abusive seduction. They maintain that sincerity so much so that it is you and I that internalized that WE must have the problem or be the problem if and when anything goes wrong. Like the lie theory above – right becomes wrong and wrong becomes the right. It is that seductive mix that includes the charm, extreme manipulation, and love bombing as well that reinforces the whole scamming process that distorts our reality. All we really did was believe in them and that was our mistake that led us straight into their abuse of us. Again it all comes back around to their convenience in every situation so that events, their actions, and your actions, just get reinvented to maintain the principle that their convenience comes first and the lies they use to get there. This also means that their reality principle operates so they cannot see the real truth as it concerns them that is purely delusion. They really do live in a self-policing fortress of self-serving convenience. Applying legitimacy to their own lies gives the Narcissist better tools to make and create these delusional based self-deceptions that are at the center of their pathology which make them more believable to themselves and others. They live completely outside of their own reality and that is the basis of their façade. It is not likely that they will ever seek out professional help because they don’t believe there’s anything wrong with them (they don’t even consider it) so they don’t see the need to fix themselves, so whatever problems they encounter are always someone else’s fault.
Our entire existence to connect in this life is based on there being sufficient regularities, rules, or even laws in human nature to make healthy as well as sufficiently reliable interactions with other people. This is just a given and part of our belief system so we generally don’t venture out into the world believing everybody is a liar, abusive, or a Narcissist. We will always tend to follow our belief system first and trust it until there is sufficient proof to believe otherwise. These regularities come from various aspects of just being part of the human condition, AND without them the human condition cannot function normally. Well interestingly enough the Narcissist considers this and uses it as bait to trap us. They completely work this reality of life into their façade of lies, as well as their agenda, and it becomes a working part of their personality or that facade. They are just one magnanimous and huge dangerous lie!
We presume that the Narcissist is reliable and that not only includes their words but their actions as well! THIS is what makes people with personality disorders so destructive, so disorienting, so unhealthy for normal interactions, and so abusive to our lives. The behavioral sciences will tell us that Narcissists or basically people with this type of toxic personality disorder do not think as we do. The definition goes like this – the words that WE construe as normal simply do not have the same status and meaning to a Narcissist because their personality disorder trumps everything and again including how THEY construe all events and even themselves.
Our part in all of this is to find closure in the truth that this was abuse from a personality disordered person that we cannot fix or heal. From there we must STOP blaming ourselves as if WE were the unhealthy one. We must discard everything and anything as it concerns this Narcissist by taking the power away from them and empowering our self. We cannot allow that emotional connection to drive us back into this destructive relationship and try one more time. We must work on our personal recovery and healing from this abusive situation because now it is only about us and returning to a normal world as the healthy individual we once were. We have the power to do this as well as the ability to move forward with trust. The path to recovery is not easy or without pain but it is necessary because we cannot remain frozen and locked up in the abuse for the remainder of our life. Education, personal reflection and introspection as well as support from fellow survivors is key in our recovery process. It is an investment in our healthy future and something we MUST do at all costs. This HAS to start with no or minimum contact if you must remain in any personal contact with your abuser. You are an amazing human being that is equipped with these skills to become a survivor. Remember that this is about only you now. You deserve reality and love and you must strive to remove this abuse from your life so it doesn’t seed itself into your every thought process and change your life forever in a negative way. You can and will do this because you are stronger than you know. Every new day is a day that you can count as one step closer to recovery. Do NOT let the pain and struggle define your days but look at each day as one more day that you have proven just how strong and amazing you are. Greg
You are CRAZY, the source of ALL of the problems, YOU are forgetful, YOU lie, YOU drive me insane, YOU stress me out, YOU are obsessed and jealous, AND all of your friends and family AGREE – ‘Gaslighting’ the Narcissist’s attempt to drive you to the point of insanity – BUT they love you??
From my Book – From Charm to Harm and Everything else in Between with a Narcissist! @Amazon.com
A real perspective and some education on that term ‘Gaslighting’ and how it endangers and DAMAGES a target/victim’s reality over a long period of time. This is the very tool that a Narcissist uses to drive their target/victim straight to the point of dependence, subservience, and insanity AND it all started out with them loving you so they can disable you and take what they can or use YOU.
‘Gaslighting’ is purely the Narcissist’s attempt to literally make you believe that you are going insane! This term comes from the old black/white movie ‘Gaslight’ where a husband sets out to convince his very normal wife that she is insane because he is seeking out a fortune that is hidden in the attic. He secretly removes different things from their home and tells her she did it. He intentionally isolates her from others by convincing her she has issues and needs to be home and away from other people and the public trying to drive her to complete insanity. He uses her growing distress and confusion to prove to OTHERS that she IS unstable. The movie gets its name because the wife keeps noticing the ‘gas lights’ in their home dim and flicker which he is causing from being in the attic searching for this hidden fortune (in modern times it would be like our electric lights flickering), but the husband assures her that this is purely her imagination just like she imagines so many other things reinforcing that she has ISSUES – and thus the birth of the term ‘gaslighting’ to describe this extreme manipulation.
The term ‘gaslighting’ is now used to describe the psychological and emotional abuse that destroys the target/victim’s trust in their own perceptions of reality. People who distrust their perceptions are easier to manipulate and control so the abuser (Narcissist) slowly but surely creates this manipulative and purely deceptive scenario day by day until they have weakened their target/victim and they start to believe that they are going crazy, obsessed, or just not seeing reality correctly.
The classic example of ‘gaslighting is to change or manipulate things in a person’s normal or familiar environment without their knowledge. The ‘gaslighter’ then denies the targets reality by manipulating them into believing they must be imagining things, forgetful, losing it, etc. when the target tries to challenge these perceptions that the Narcissist forces on them. For example the perpetrator will intentionally hide your car keys, phone or any number of things to make you think you are becoming very forgetful or even ‘losing it.’
Another form of ‘gaslighting’ is to deny the existence of the REAL truth through deception or outright lies and then blaming or shaming the person into believing they have lost the use of their normal reasoning as if they are imagining things. Another form is when the perpetrator denies that they said something in the past, or forgets solid plans you made by saying they never suggested this plan or event. Another example of this form of ‘gaslighting’ occurs when a husband/wife, romantic interest, etc., has cheated. The Narcissistic husband/wife or romantic interest will vehemently deny the affair and insist they are not lying and the target is just imagining things, or jealous and making things up. THEN they will turn the argument around and insist that they are hurt over the accusations and insist that you are obsessed and just starting another argument. They (the Narcissist) is sick of it and you better change or else! You end up apologizing and basically having to accept that you have wronged them, even though your perceptions WERE real and true in every situation. Unfortunately you have been completely duped and blamed for being real with your concerns. Nothing is resolved and you are still unsure of the truth so you are only confused and move on with yet another layer of this crazy making being unresolved. Lastly the perpetrator will revert to another tactic and will insist that other people like friends, family, coworkers, etc., reinforce this too by saying that they are worried about you as well and thinking you have issues. The Narcissist will even go as far as telling friends and family that the target DOES have issues working both sides of this HUGE manipulation.
It’s important to note that most psychological and emotional abuse is not always direct and verbal as the examples above. It can be implied with sarcasm, irony, or mumblings and can be communicated with body language, rolling eyes, sighs, grimaces, tone of voice, disgusted looks, cold shoulders, slamming doors, banging things, stonewalling, silencing, cold shoulders, punishing, etc. There are a myriad of ways to be psychologically and emotionally abusive and the Narcissist employs all of them to make you believe that all of the problems are directly related to YOU!
Narcissists frequently use ‘gaslighting’ tactics. Simply put Narcissists are cruel, manipulative, conniving, and convincing liars who consistently deny their wrongdoing and basically project it onto and into you so that they can fulfill their agenda of extorting what they can from you. Are they aware of this? Well it really seems so when they lie to cover up their indiscretions and manipulate to make us think otherwise! They MUST know they have done something wrong to deny the truth. They are cognizant or thinking throughout this entire process to achieve the desired responses they want! Couple this with the fake personal charm or better yet seduction to lure you in that characterizes Narcissists. Any way you look at their actions they are duping you into believing that your perception of love with them is real, THEN they also dupe you into believing you are a horrible person, THEN duping you into believing you may have serious issues around your own mental health, and lastly duping everyone around you into believing these horrendous lies to destroy you so they can move on to yet another unsuspecting target/victim to start up the whole process AGAIN and escaping any exposure of what they are and what they have done! EVERYTHING with them is a lie to support their needs and HIDE their agenda and they constantly repeat this process with every person that they are in a relationship with. They even dupe friends into their lives to use as supporters or minions to support their facade of fake goodness.
A Narcissist means to get into your life and head, get the supply they need so desperately, and disable you at so many levels concerning your mental well-being! This corresponds with cognitive dissonance where you believe the reality that a Narcissist presents through their charm and ‘love bombing’ or the huge and FAKE façade of morality and goodness they create, but intuition and facts rear up with a direct opposite reality or the truth of what they really are. It continually keeps you in a vicious circle of belief and then doubt and constantly back and forth between these two conflicting and confusing realities. This is serious business in understanding the truth around your abuse and just how thoroughly manipulated you were throughout the entire period of time you spent with this person. From the first day they met you this horrible attack on your emotional and psychological well-being started. If this is not understood through educating yourself and left unresolved, you will accept the negative messages, blame, shame or the whole nine yards and remain traumatized for many years and unable to move forward in a healthy manner.
This is NOT something that the target/victim has conscious control over because it is purely born from the lies, manipulation, isolation, and CONTROL. Intuition does come into play but because of the highly manipulative aspect of ‘gaslighting’ it seriously confounds, distorts, and disables a person’s reality. The charm or love bombing has created a strong emotional bond of love, and this is what creates that familiar, NORMAL and real relationship that you believe in – or what we have always understood a relationship should be. We probably weren’t familiar with Narcissists or the manner that they abuse good and loving people with fake empathy and love. Subsequently when the conflict that is created by the Narcissist’s opposite virtue of pure deception enters into the relationship, it works in direct opposition to what the target/victim has bonded with or the strong emotions of love and the normal human belief system. The target/victim reaches out to regain that position of love. That love is what keeps you attached at the hip with this creature because of those strong emotions that locked you into this relationship. Remember that real love has many other components that have been born out of our life lessons or the human condition that we were all raised to believe in. Those values are strong within us and along with them came messages to work at a cohesive relationship when you feel this loving bond with another person!
Within these internal messages we grew up with is respect for the person we love, give and take, integrity, being unconditional, understanding, forgiving, etc., or again what we were raised to believe in as far as committing to a person that we love – BUT that love the Narcissist initiated was just as much a part of the ‘gaslighting’ as were all of the negative and damaging things! A Narcissist knows this and snuggles right up to those values we were raised with to get into our heads, BUT the Narcissist never abides by the same beliefs or rules that we do AND they do not love or care about people as anything more than an object to pursue and use. What a complete and hideous form of emotional and psychological abuse this is to betray a person through one of the most beautiful emotions in life – LOVE! This seems to be more of a well-planned out agenda from a creature that knows exactly what they are doing. Know this very truth completely so that you can purge all of the negative effects of this huge betrayal from your heart and mind to stop blaming yourself and know the truth that it is not YOU with the mental issues but the Narcissist that abused you so you can start out on your journey to healing and recovery. No/minimal contact always. Greg
Once a Narcissist latches onto you and your world – ‘GAME ON’ and you will be on an emotional and psychological roller coaster ride that will make your reality so dizzying that all you can do to save your life is to jump off of that roller coaster and hope for the best when you land on your feet.
From my Book – From Charm to Harm and Everything else in Between with a Narcissist! @Amazon.com
A Narcissist’s world is completely EXTERNAL as far as satisfying all of their needs – there is NO internalized emotions, bonding, caring or loving – you and I and every other person are objects to accomplish this! There is absolutely no motivation on the Narcissist’s part as far as any concern with anyone else’s well-being – we are only a functional object to supply their every need. This is what makes them dangerous and yes even defined by some as, bad, evil or any other number of things – but whatever we use to describe this personality disorder, they are unsafe for human interaction PERIOD!
Do they see themselves as any of this? Very unlikely because of the extreme denial they are in! Remember that they have created and justified every aspect of their self-serving and fake reality. The destruction and wrong doing they perpetrate is an outcome of their righteous and delusional cause. They have contorted this distorted and delusional behavior into that charm or fake goodness and that ‘love’ to con, trick, and manipulate unsuspecting people into their trap of deceit and destruction because it benefits them and provides them with every fulfillment they crave and can’t get normally. It provides them with supply and they go for it, steal it, or manipulate it away from whomever they can. Supply is their drug of choice and they are addicted to it and will do anything to get their next fix JUST like an addict. This is a pattern that repeats itself with them their entire life. They have completely tweaked their life and reality to accomplish this to serve their every need and for their entire life.
Malignant Narcissism isn’t about an everyday variety of selfishness or just dealing with a jerk, but better described as a pathological and all-consuming selfishness. They create an image or a fake reality to lure us into their world and take everything they can from us. It is a selfishness that will destroy anything that gets in its way if it is not served completely and fully AND even that is not enough because they will want more and other varied sources.
The Narcissist needs MANY mirrors to accomplish their fake reality, or to be substantiated and validated to survive or better yet a “host” or MNY ‘hosts.’ This is what we clinically call “getting supply”. They create this false reality so they can survive and we substantiate it by believing what we see standing in front of us as a real human being full of compassion and empathy. We are that mirror that he/she plays to. Narcissists pose in front of their mirrors (or us) to get the desired reflection back – it is deception to win us over and to get at that supply. When you show looks of interest, admiration, fear, or concern, they are basking in their reflected self or better yet their insubstantial self. But this reflection isn’t just to see themselves as a “good” or “normal” person – that is the con or disguise – it is a means to an end to exploit what they can from us. They need to be a part of society, but they can’t fit in without re-defining themselves and hiding the loathsome monster they are. They lack the mechanism that normal people seem to be born with and grow with – empathy and unconditional love. Without their fake reality the Narcissist would remain as a lonesome and loathsome creature that hides under rocks and they couldn’t find any supply there – so they come equipped with many disguises.
Their false image/reality is created ONLY as a working component to hide their pathological and dysfunctional life and to make them seem functional, loveable, important or whatever to get to us. They cognitively create a “special” image for each of us. They need YOU/US to accomplish this. They need you/us to hold up the mirror for them. They aren’t looking at us for anything but as a reflection of their needs. We don’t exist as a person to them, we are only there supply. They are like a parasite that takes what they need with a single thought or benefit for any singular need we have because we are the host. If you cease giving them what they want they will move on to a better host. They are completely heedless of their tremendous and all-consuming need of people to accomplish their unending NEEDINESS.
Narcissist stalk their prey as a predator does and we have to see this as the truth about them as defined by their intent to feed off of us and not view them through the charm or fake love because that was the predatory act that trapped us in the first place. To define this in more practical terms a Narcissist must do so because their intentions are malevolent and absolute – they need us to survive. Seriously if we would have known this it would frighten any source of supply away. If the target could easily discern the true nature and insatiable lusts and intent to drain/destroy them they would run for cover and literally for their life. So the Narcissist transforms themselves into the best and most luring bait to trap their next victim. They are very adept at making and wearing masks thriving on appearances because they have no positive substance and without it nobody would find them anything but the despicable characters they are. This describes a predator that camouflages itself to obtain prey.
We are only objects to the Narcissist and we are there for one reason and that is to serve them. They refuse (again, conscious choice) to see our humanity and the basic rights that come along with that humanity. We are nothing more than an object for their use. They abide by no law earthly or heavenly. Their world is completely EXTERNAL. When done, they cast you/us aside. People who believe that the Narcissist really loves them are tragically deceived by the many lies that compromise the Narcissist in their lives. The Narcissist NEEDS a vast and varied reservoir of love, compassion and concern, or complete admiration and adoration in EVERY facet of their lives.
The malignant Narcissist is absolutely incapable of the true emotion of love for any other human being period. You can never successfully deal with a Narcissist if you believe they love you in any real way. They need and use us, but need is not love. A Narcissist’s “need” is the need that will take with no concern as to whether their taking is destroying you or even killing you, AND it is all consuming. Beneath their thin veneer is the reality of a non-functioning human that uses us as a host to take away our life force. They will malign ALL people and will even use their own biological children as supply and inflict harm onto them as well. We must understand this and accept it to break that bond we THOUGHT was love so we can move forward to recovery. You were chosen because of your amazing qualities that they wanted and they mean to take what they can from you. YOU are resilient and have the ability to move forward to recovery and be that person you once were but you MUST break that hypnotic spell that they cast onto your emotions that poisoned your heart and mind first! No/minimal contact is the only way to break this symbiotic relationship with them – cut off the supply and The Narcissist will move on and away! Greg