“Im Ready to Move ON!!!” – Why Does Recovery Take So Long?


Speaking with other survivors / targets of narcissists, I’ve identified that there’s a common & rather grave concern about the amount of time it takes to recover from narcissistic abuse.

Recovery from this trauma waxes and wanes with such unpredictable and strong waves that it’s not difficult for even the seasoned “veteran” among us to get shaken up a bit by the years that seem to drift by while we’re  WORKING ON THINGS. It feels as if we’ll never get better.

Ptsd certainly presents a conducive hyper alert state anyway, triggers can result from the most unlikely sources and there you are, trembling – struggling to stand up to someone who’s bullying you, calling you names or threatening you or some other version of narc memories as if they’re happening currently in loud and vivid color.

The areas of our lives that are impacted by narc abuse are so far reaching that it deeply sinks into the cores of our beings, our identities – and stays with us like an unwelcome visitor. Not one area was NOT affected by this abuse: Our Emotional, Mental, Spiritual, and even Physical  lives forever altered by narcissism. It makes sense why each area of repair takes a very long time before we feel completely recovered from narcissistic abuse.

Life circumstances always seem to draw us back into the trauma. We vividly relive the moments we were muted and taunted by a terrorist who said they loved us.

Events on the job make us sensitive. Too many times, reminders exist in the office bully who finds you to be a sweet target. If we’ve mastered the art of avoidance, we run from job to job, hoping to find an environment that doesn’t threaten us.

People we bump into, socially remind us ever so slightly of the way the narc squinted, jerked quickly around in response to a remark, on and on, too many seemingly innocuous triggers to list.

We may have failed relationship after failed relationship, with one after another, and question what we are doing wrong – which leads us back to validating what the narc said about us all along – that we’d end up alone. We fear they’ll always have a hold on our future; this ghost of our past.

We may hear that the narcissist is up to their old tricks, getting away with their crimes all over again or hear that the narcissist is succeeding somehow and have feelings that the narcissist is doing so much better than we are: permanently scarred and traumatized, while they dance off into the sunset, unscathed.

We may have vengeful thoughts or desires for karma to hurry it’s arrival only to feel guilty for not forgiving or moving on sooner or “with more grace” or sportsmanlike conduct.

When did WE become OUR OWN ENEMY?

Is this a permanent flea we’ve picked up from the narcissist? Are we now tied forever to the darkest part of our lives?

Although we know we are responsible, how do we delete these memories or make them fade to black and white? How do we make them less powerful?

I didn’t use to be so fearful of people. I had the impression that every person I met would be a friend. Now, I worry that every person will be an enemy in sheep’s clothing. This protection seems to be a new requirement after narc abuse; for how can we imagine not building this boundary when to not do so, would be to our peril? Every person we are getting to know is a potential predator. Once we’ve been traumatized by a narcissist, our innocence is forever stolen.

The realization that it’s been SO DAMN LONG, is no other way to put it: DEPRESSING. I hear this time and again. When I share with someone who’s been out quite a long time, it surprises me to hear we share the same sentiment:  “When the hell is this going to be over!??” Again and again, I hear, “When you find “the cure” let me know!” These are people that I admire greatly and consider VERY STRONG people yet, they’re struggling to let go of fear, anger, retribution, and even hate.

I may not have all the answers, but I can honestly say, I am completely OPEN to God, to give me the answer to this one last piece of the puzzle…HOW DO WE PUT NARCISSISTIC ABUSE BEHIND US, 100%, ONCE AND FOR ALL?

Stay tuned . . .

Posted on May 16, 2014, in Narcissism. Bookmark the permalink. 74 Comments.

  1. Omg its been 4 yrs for me. I’ve not had another relationship I’ve been working solidly on myself. The one area where I feel its still obvious that I am struggling to recover is my weight. I was always slim and fit before I met Narc but 3 years of being called “fatty” took its toll on me. I feel now I might be ready to start meeting new people but my weight is really putting me off doing so and no matter what I do I can’t seem to lose it. I was talking to a friend and she suggested that I am holding onto the weight as protection. To ward off anyone who might be superficial like a Narc. She could be right but its getting me down. So much so I found this site googling how to get over Narc Abuse after so long….


  2. It has been just over a year since I kicked my narc husband out of the house for cheating yet again… The past year has been a nightmarish rollercoaster from hell… I have been emotionally ripped to shreds…. The internal fight between “I need him… Can’t lose him”… And “thank God he’s gone because if he’s cheated once, he’s cheated a thousand times” has been keeping me stuck in an awful turmoil that has no obvious end in sight!! Why do I cry myself to sleep every night still even though I know I’m better off without him!?

    We were together 25 years…. For the most part… Of course that was despite the numerous times I caught him cheating on me. The entire 25 years I knew it was an unhealthy relationship… Even tried to leave him several times only to be lured back in every time… He wanted it to end like this… With me in crumpled despair and him all happy go lucky!! I hate him like I have never hated anyone in my life!! And yet I’m stuck in this awful HELL…….


  3. Stephany Dresel - Zamarripa

    I have been in recovery for 10 months for coda. Its been a year since I walked away on foot. On the one hand coda saved my life
    On the other hand it’s been a year and I’m still hurting. I do affirmations every day and pray to God and don’t encourage flash blacks. Hee in prison it’s over so why these emotions? I can go weeks of peace and no flashbacks. Then I saw his uncle at church Sucks that we go to the same one but he’s a good man, even still I cried for two days and can’t Get back to “Best day ever mantalitykay !…. how many years will it take yo be over it?? My first abuser was your garden variety abuser but still violent
    He put a pastic bag ober my face and still he NEVER would have done what he did. will i ever heal????


  4. Patrick on 18th January 2016 at 0318 hours. I knew what narcissist meant but had never heard of NPD or NVS until I looked at the full definition of narcissist on the Internet a few weeks ago and discovered NPD and NVS. I now realise why my ex wife deliberately scuppered others conversations when out socialising with friends or would publicly humiliate me or would over react to the tiniest bit of critisim; blamed others for anything that went wrong in her life, etc, etc, etc. I could never put my finger on what it was that I was doing wrong in our relationship to deserve this treatment. We were divorced two years ago and since then, not one of our mutual friends have remained in contact with me. After all this time (15 years together) I now know that my ex has virtually every trait of NPD….personified. She would accuse me of being depressed (which was true) but I now realise she was the cause of it. Even now I have bouts of depression which I cannot shake off. I feel like an empty shell, like one of those snail shells that you see where a bird has sucked out the contents. Lost my identity and totally overwhelmed and very lonely by the whole experience of memory loss, disrupted sleep patterns, loss of self confidence and self esteem and difficulty in articulating my feelings and general every day conversations with people. I do hope that I can slake off this horrible experience.


  5. I’m 3 months out and I what I tell myself when i start wondering about this person(what or who they are up to) or when the negative thoughts about past events starts to pop is, “don’t feed the monster!”. Starve the Monster (thoughts, ruminations, what ifs, I wonder what…) instantly. It wants to be fed, but I actively choose and know that to feel any better and have a better future, I have to make it about ME and what IM gonna do to leave all of that in the past and never look back. Anytime the monster creeps up, I literally ask myself ” what can you do right now to be a better you?” And then maybe I’ll start organizing or plan my week out or do something to help a friend. And that to me propels me forward and gets me further and further away from who I was when I was in the thick of THAT MESS. I now know that although I’m different after having experienced it , I’m still ME with all the good qualities that probably landed me with this person in the first place, and I’m grateful that I get to keep all that, that they’ll never get a drop of that from ME again, and I’m now a lot wiser!


  6. I have just made a list of all the opposites I want In a partner that he could not be! For example, the man I’m with will be trust worthy, the man I’m with will want to compromise, the man I’m with will be consistent with his feelings towards me! The list went on and on! It amazed me how many things he could not be that I find to be basic needs within a relationship! He told me lots of stories from his past, and I sussed out how he treated previous partners much worse than me. Making the list made me feel more positive! Concentrate on what you want and not what you don’t want!! It confirmed to me how wrong he was for me and that I was right to walk away following a second argument with him! I didn’t plead, explain anymore how wrong I thought his behaviour was or seek answers, I just went in silence! I am lucky to get away! Even though it hurts and I’m confused after his sudden coldness four months into our relationship (after I pulled him up on his inconsiderate attitude), I know I want and deserve better! Good luck to you all xxx


  7. I feel I will forever want to reach out to him only to always be treated as I was. Even if the choice was ours to run for our lives now that life seems insignificant without them. So painful. Even with 2 years of counseling still not much relief.


    • Stephany Dresel - Zamarripa

      Codependency anonymous helped me and I suffered grave trauma. There’s hope in coda. It teachers u to love yourself and believe in the law of attraction. When you can love yourself you want to attract users


    • Stephany Dresel - Zamarripa

      Go to coda. It will help u. They saved me from him killing me codependency 12 steps is the best thing that ever happened to me


  8. Please help me to stop this pain.
    God only knows how much I’ve endured
    I wish someone could just wake me up from this nightmare


  9. NPD Abuse has slowly been eating away at my soul for the past 5 years. I overlooked SO many red flags I am so ashamed of myself. We were married for 4 years and have two beautiful, young daughters. This is our 5th seperation I believe. It took me this long to recognize the cycle of abuse and leave it for good. The pain and hurt is unbearable at times and all I can do is sob in a corner away from my daughters so they don’t have to see their mother like this. I’ve lost everything. My home, job, marriage, friends, and happiness is all gone. I have a day here and there where I feel super energized and full of new hope. That quickly fades back into depression when old memories resurface. I can’t maintain any relationships because I am so damaged and I don’t trust anyone.

    My ex-narc is what experts would call a perilous narcissist. He is angry and violent and also has substance abuse issues. He has been emotionally abusive from the beginning which then spiraled into physical abuse during my first pregnancy. Jealousy, name calling, shaming, etc. He is a serial victimizer. He also was emotionally abusing the children by with holding affection to our youngest daughter and giving too much affection to our oldest. I’m not even sure of the extent of his abuse to the children. It’s absolutely awful. We are all in recovery from his abuse. My youngest child’s face has completely changed. She smiles, laughs, and sings freely now. I always thought she was just not very social. It turns out she was feeling unfavored and ignored by her own father. I didn’t think toddlers could get stress lines on the face until now. I’m disgusted with him. He would call me names and provoke me until I became angry and fought back and then he would whip out his phone and record his ‘psycho’ wife for evidence to give to the lawyer that he already had on retainer. He would threaten to take my children from because he thought I was unfit and could ‘prove it’. He even has his own narc mother come and threaten me when I had various bruises all over my body saying I was abusing HER son. I wouldn’t wish this confusing pain on anyone. He never let me go out with my friends for fear that I would find another man. He constantly accused my of cheating and called me names and broke my belongings whenever I rebelled and went out. My mom recently came out to me and told me that he hit on her numerous times one night while I was asleep. Trying to touch her, whispering things in her ear, and smacking her ass as she walked by him. Ugh I’m so disgusted that he would go so far to hit on my own mother. Looking back I’m sure he did this often to my friends and other women which is why he tried to deflect his actions on me. I will never go on to have normal friendships and relationships again.

    Since leaving we have had very little correspondence. He emailed me with the same old I’m sorry I’m going to AA bull****. I have decided to not reply to any of his attempts to contact me. He hasn’t offered to buy food or other necessities for the children. He sees us as a package deal. If he can’t have me he doesn’t want them either. Awful. I Am not even okay with him taking the girls anywhere because of how sick and twisted he and his family are. We are so blessed to have my parents graciously offer their home and food to us. Luckily I have a cosmetology license, but I have start at square one again with two small kids in tow. I have to heal because I have babies to raise and a new life to design for us all! I’m scared of the backlash that is ahead during the divorce process. Each day of recovery present a new mental challenge for me and I am trying to allow myself to feel everything as it comes. God be with us all. I hope we also have fast and full recoveries.


  10. It has been only 2 1/2 months that I shut that door on her..The last time that I looked her in the eye, the last argument, the last time I will ever touch her or hear her voice, the last time and the last good bye. It’s a rollercoaster in my brain, I wake up one day and I feel stronger and my head feels clearer, than another day will come and I will wish for one more moment. I have found myself not wanting to go the all the normal places in life for the fear of seeing her again, the fear of coming around the corner and finding her in front of me. She knows me well enough to see the pain, and to see my weakness, and I never again want to give that pleasure to her ever again. I hate that somehow she still takes my life away from me a little bit every day. I hate myself that I can’t make it stop. I hate myself that I still worry what she will think about this or that. Why am I not like my friends, that I can’t not just say ” Who care’s what she thinks?” and moves on like it’s nothing. Why do I have to wake up every morning no matter how hard I try and still..somewhere it comes back..I wonder where she is,What she is doing, what if I run into her today, What if…what if. Over and over it plays through out my day. ..on it’s own in the background like a never ending loop. She took so much and I am doing all that I can to get me back..I just wish….a thousand times over…I wish


  11. I would like to say being around old friends helps me transition into the person I used to be. I can be myself around them. But at the same time I’m learning to find myself all over again. Learning to love myself again.


  12. I know the feeling of being ready to move on …yet the recovery process is still on. My ex husband of 28 yrs and 3 kids is a narcissists. We divorced 4 yrs ago. I thought it was my only way out of the abuse only to learn it became worse. He turned my very own children against me. He charms my family and many others to this very day. It’s beyond sickening. Last month, he up and married some woman he was dating and informed our kids via text msg and others via facebook with several sickening photos. I know he has no conscience because he claims to be a man of God. And somehow…I still can’t find the strength much less the nerve to move on or even date another man. This pain seems eternal….


  13. It’s come to my attention that my ex-Narc is in the process of love-bombing another victim. Is there anyway that we, the chewed up and spat out, can possibly warn the latest targets of these monsters of the true personality behind the mask? I feel bad sitting by and letting another woman suffer.


    • Yeah , do what I did. Sent his four other women a few examples, some evidence, and plastered his name all over the internet. There are lots of “liar,cheater, badbaoy” websites out there specifically for this. Watched him blow up. I think the other women got the memo, but if any didn’t , well they will soon. At least I tried and I wish someone would have given me a heads up , every time I met a narcissist. Would have possibly saved me a lot of pain. I will always google someones name from now on also, in the hope that if he’s an ass, someone had the courage to out him publicly


      • I did that (shamed him on the internet) and he actually got a protective order against me. No shit, never been in trouble a day in my life. I didn’t have an atty, tho and tried representing myself in a man’s courtroom (it was pathetic, really).


  14. Help me its killing me slowly i stayed too long 19yrs and 4 children my body ache with pain i have lived separate from him 3 years yet am still being abused please help me my story would be a book too long to write


    • Ive read your blog. I too have lived with a narcissist for 21 yrs. I finally ended the marriage. I did not plan on leaving. My circumstances lead me to leave. I am struggling to move on even though I know why I left. You want to talk. I left my email below.


  15. Try Psychopathfree.com —– a wealth of information with a forum. The bloggers are smart and supportive.

    For All Readers to Heal Faster from Narcissistic Abuse:

    If you are able to contact an ex partner that was involved with your ex narc socio or psycho I highly recommend it.

    Remember the past normal women had to heal as well.

    My healing has been escalated because I did call one of his ex gf’s. She is one that I should have called a year ago to save me from continuing with the evil. If I had called her even six months ago, I would have not been so narcissistically abused. I could have jump started this healing process and may have had a Real Loving Normal BF by now. I knew about this ex gf because I really pried into his past. I hated prying like that, I don’t know about you, but I was a paranoid wreck and wanted to know how many women has he been with.

    She was gracious by taking my call where I opened up wounds resulted from a nasty evil man in her past life and talking about a man who we both loved – as sick as that is to love that evil disgusting man. She gave me about 45 minutes to validate all what I knew, suspected, and information I gasped at that I didn’t know, but definitely made sense. Before I went into my story, she said, Oh, do you want to know about MR, the narcissistic? I felt so relieved when she said that. I asked her how she healed because she was in the mind control longer than myself. She said time is the healer. As time passes, the memories gradually fade, but never completely leaves due to reminders from time to time. I told her what disorders I feel he has, NBP, and she said oh throw in schizophrenic too. She said he is loaded with mental problems.

    Her story was worse than mine. She knew a lot about his circle of “minion people” who I suspected were full of evil. His minions are exactly what I thought, just like him; cheaters, liars, conman. Their wives are “puppets” and would rather look away so not to upset their lifestyle. I was really getting knots in my stomach hearing a lot of what she said, but I needed to hear it, I had to hear it. She confirmed what I saw and felt in those two years with him being around all that Hell. It was comforting to know that I was finally not alone with all that I knew and talking to someone who could acknowledge all that craziness. She was helping to put an end to this addiction in my mind. Her story was exactly what I went through, but she had dealt with more evil since she was in the web longer. She checked his cell phone just like I did when he would fall asleep. We lived being paranoid, suspicious, and our instincts were always correct. He lied, cheated, and brainwashed us. As co-dependents we wanted to make him to be happy with only us, but that was never to happen.

    We agreed that to be in that Hell and socializing with all the mentally disordered people in his world of narcissists, bipolars, socios, and psychos, we often felt alone or a minority with our normal thinking minds. It is true the evils do try to get a normal to go along with their insanity and confusing our values and morals. I am sure she had good times alone with him, so did I, we didn’t really go into that because the bottom line is he is an evil entity who made us believe we were special and the love of his life. She said she saw his eyes turn black and I said I did too. Both of us said he has demons and they follow him from residence to residence. He is a nomadic evil. There were times we felt sad in our conversation, because he smeared lies about her and she knew what he told people. She told me to expect that he has told people I am insane also, she had not heard that per se, but she said that is his pattern. He smears all his ex gf’s and ex wife saying we are all insane and not right in the head. I felt pangs of hurt knowing that yes he cheated nonstop while he was with me, I knew that, but now I know that what I accused him of was real. Her and him had yelling arguments, I only yelled once and he didn’t yell back. He always told me I lived in fear and no other woman he had been with could care less that he looked at other women while he was out with them. She said of course it bothered her, but she just looked away when he stared at other women. I think it is so disrepectful so I was not quiet about it. He ruined a lot of dates because he would do that and make me feel insecure.

    We compared all of the love bombing phrases, pet names, lies, stories, even some sex stuff, and agreed that he isn’t as good in bed as he thinks, lol, we laughed, made fun of him, and then she had to get off the phone. I still had more questions, but I doubt she jotted my number down or ever calls me. She does not want to keep rehashing it, which I understand. She said my hurt is still fresh for me, but I think she felt I heard enough and wants me to think about my new adventure and not on what he did to me. I agree I absolutely cannot take this “crazy baggage” into my new life in a new place, I will be an empty nester for the first time. I have a great life waiting for me to explore and I want a Normal BF!

    She hasn’t seen him in a few years, but the sad thing is she is scarred. I feel bad and told her to seek love from a normal man, she said she can’t trust. I am sure many narcissistic abused are too afraid to trust ever again or do not trust themselves to let the right person in their lives. When we give our minds, bodies, hearts, and souls to these evils, we have basically sold our souls to the devil. We must get our power back and get our minds, bodies, hearts, and souls back in our control. I told her that I want love so much from a normal man and her talking to me has helped heal my heart. I still have a little bit more to go, but I felt our conversation made everything final. When she moved far away, he hoovered her, but she never called him out on his NBP so he thinks she doesn’t know what he is. I think if a victim does not expose their evil, they may be recycled.

    Sidenote: Her and I both know he has a new woman. He was preparing to move the new woman into his new place fast while he was still seeing me. I had called him out on his NBP so I was going to get the evil punishment. He kept me going until she was about to fully move in, then I saw the female hairs in his bed which made me livid. I immediately stopped seeing him realizing I had been in the discard phase and I didn’t know it! He claims he is changing for her (he said that about me too but we never lived together) and and doesn’t want to screw it up with her (which he told me that too). I said above in my other blog that I saw him on dating sites where he stalked me on my one profile and I actually dialogued with him just a month ago as he was pretending to live in a different state with a different name yet there he was in his photo wearing the shirt I gave him! In his instant message to me he said he didn’t have a gf and wished I lived closer to him! Ha! He really thought I was believing his bullcrap when it was 100% him I was dialoguing with. So you readers do you really think he is changing for her? He hooked her fast and moved her in so she didn’t have time to see the Jeckyl and Hyde. It has been eight months do you think his mask has slipped yet? I saw slippage within the love bombing stage but dismissed it (I think we all dismiss signs). His ex gf said she gives the new woman a year before she has enough or is she going to become a “puppet”? Also what normal person moves in with a person they barely know? He met her in a bar just a couple months before I saw the hairs. Well, she got the life that was supposed to be mine. I know, I am saved from possibly turning into a puppet like his friends wives or becoming chronically ill like the one wife who has MS which I know was triggered from all the mental abuse, but knowing that the new woman is the one he was seeing while with me just turns my stomach.

    Peace & Love


    • Hey. I can relate almost identically to your story. I understand what you are going through I truly do and it’s a living hell. Just roles reversed. I am male and my narc was female. Damn she devil. Haha. I still struggle and hurt but it has gotten so so much better and I have days, then multiple days where I feel so alive and full of passion and drive again. Don’t worry about the new girl, and all those thoughts and feelings that go along with it. Go no contact. Don’t search for them. Don’t what if or if only. You’ll get there, just do yourself a favor and separate yourself from it all and don’t be hard on yourself.


    • Although I have suffered from being in such a relationship, and I understand, please do not confuse those who treat partners badly with those who are mentally ill. I am mentally ill and I would never treat anyone as my ex treated me. Some of us who have these illnesses have been forced to look deep into ourselves and gain much insight. We in fact become saner than the “healthy” people who have never ever had to question themselves. “Mentally ill” is not the same as “evil” any more than “black” or “gay” is.


  16. I have been searching for a support site or something for this. This is such a relief to read. Does anyone know of an online support group? I’m only a month out and it feels like a life time ago sometimes and other times it feels like yesterday. I often feel like I’m suffocating. Thank you for your post.


  17. I am moved by your story. You showed incredible courage sharing it. (Where the narcisscist would have you shamed and hiding, you became a beacon – good for you.) That sharing will definitely help others to not be alone in their story. Change requires self awareness which you have so beautifully shared. Florence Scovel Shinn has some transformative writings that you may find wise. Peace to you, Monica


    • I’ve been watching a series of videos regarding negative and positive peptides in our brains. How the narc’s abuse leaves us looking for help, reading and trying to get help, but all we actually do is read more stories exactly like ours and we aren’t really learning how to HEAL from this (I just stay stuck in the trying to understand it phase). The videos (youtube) on healing from narcissistic abuse using your brain to STOP the negative thought processes, and replace them with positive thought processes (to retrain our brain from multiplying mega negative peptides into positive ones). Sounds like I’m batshit crazy, but I’m not. It makes TOTAL logical sense out of something that has NO logic whatsoever. Please look it up, it seems to be helping me a LOT.


  18. Having only been involved with a Narcissist for a year, I cannot imagine the torture that must be experienced by those who are raised by one. I am 7 months out from ending this awful relationship and still feel the horrible effects. Just when I find some peace, thinking he’s moved on and forgotten about me he re-initiates contact. Fortunately I haven’t actually seen him in person, but we have exchanged emails. Then he drops me again. As soon as he re-enters the thoughts immediately start back up. What does he want? Does he miss me? Does he want to see me? Is he seeing someone else? What will I say? What should I do? On and on and on. It starts to suck up all my energy and I’m completely preoccupied. It is a huge waste of time, and the saddest fact of all, is I don’t even actually like him. He’s not a good person and he’s not that enjoyable to be around. Except for the sex. I realized I didn’t even like him really a couple of months into the relationship. I wanted it over and felt relieved to end it when the devaluation began, but for reasons I don’t quite understand he was able to suck me back in each time. When it started to become controlling and abusive I brought it to a therapist who identified his behavior as what it is in about 5 seconds and I ended it for good. But even this knowledge doesn’t change how I feel. Even a year later when he reinitiated contact after months. First feeling empowered, then disappointed, then outraged that this is still consuming me at times. IThis was so hard to block because I wanted to know, what is he going to do? But I did and it worked. Email is the only way and now I’ve set up filters. No more. Instead of wondering what is he thinking, who cares? It doesn’t matter. I never want anything to do with him and just need to treat it as what it is, some chemical addiction that he created through emotional manipulation. The only way to win is to heal and live well. Without needing to show him how well I’m doing 🙂
    Thank you all for the true support you provide and information. It gets better.


  19. Where do I go from here? Saying they are criminals is soooo correct. The snowball just keeps getting bigger, even though our divorce was final last Sept. that snowball is still going. I’ve read soooo many stories about NPD over the last few days. I’ve never even heard of it until now. So now, I’m tired of reading about it, I just want to learn how to heal and be normal again. Nothing I can do about mine now, I just want to know where I can go to find help. I have my running shoes on and it’s looking like I’m going to run from every relationship since the narc’s. Talk about really messing someone up in the head. I was a normal girl. Now I’m all over the place. What a sick, twisted individual. Tore me down to near homelessness, there’s nothing more of me to give. Someone please send me some links to learn how to heal from this and be normal again. Thanks so much…


    • Here is a start:


      Read her entire site and see what appeals to you. There are not a lot of specialists treating the aftermath of a Narcissistic Socio or Psychopath.

      Melanie has created a program to assist victims in their healing from narcissistic abuse, which is a progression process.

      I am getting better by venting and educating many others every week. I am looking forward to moving far away, a real blessing. I am excited about my new adventure. I also workout just about every day and eat healthy, which is very necessary for healing the mind, body, and soul. You must take care of yourself inside and outside.

      Our goal is to not let them win. Become better than ever – makes them angry when they see they didn’t break our spirit.


  20. The Good News from all this, is we can actually have inner Peace, and we can actually feel a deep unconditional love, the evils, will NEVER feel those special emotions. They think they are superior with powers over us normals, heck no, we are better than them because we can heal, they can NEVER be fixed.

    My hope is that you all heal as quickly as you can and realize that they are not human, they are not worth any more of our time thinking about them. YOU are losing precious time, like me, figuring out what they have done to us. They are aliens, evils, entities, demonic beings, they only know how to destroy and they only know how to mimic good hearted people’s behaviors and responses. They read all of our blogs, and they get off knowing what they can do to our mental state of mind.

    The narcissistically abused need to take charge of our minds again.

    I have read blogs from people who say they have narcissistic socio or psycho pathologies and they claim they have learned to control their evil thoughts, where they can actually be married to the same person, have a family, not lie or cheat, and live in harmony. One of those bloggers said they can turn-on their evil if they really want to. How would you like to be married/involved with that? I wonder if those people are considered borderliners, because the evil I was involved with, MR of Jacksonville, Florida, is far gone to the dark side – I saw his eyes turn black twice. He cannot control his evil thoughts, he acts out on them. His mental abuse is subtle and he constantly drops hints of his crazy thoughts, then switching back to a nice, fun person. That is how he leaves his victim confused, he blurts out what he is really thinking, waits for a reaction, then quickly says or does something nice to make his victim forget what he just said. One remark he said when I first met him was, “Just don’t make me jealous, I can’t handle it when I am jealous..” WTH?? I thought that was an odd thing to say, but then he did display his jealousy in many situations. One time in particular, which caused a huge fight and wrecked the entire evening where I broke up with him (yeah I went back to him after a few weeks), was when his pals at the country club would tell me I am beautiful and stare at me, MR would then go find someone to flirt with in front of me even the unattactive woman who drives the beverage golf cart. He left my side to go flirt and stare at her to punish me for what his friends said to me. I will not forget the bizaare, nasty comments and behaviors like that. This is a 51 year old man I am talking about! I hear the mentally disordered men in their 50’s are at their peak probably because they are worried about becoming impotent so they are on a frenzy to ruin as many as they can before they are “washed up” and start thinking maybe they should slow down and latch onto a poor sucker for the rest of their days. I was really hoping he wasn’t frickin nuts………well, so much for that wishful thinking. I am certain MR is a Narcissistic Bipolar Psychopath.

    Feeding us with bizaare comments and whacky behaviors is mental abuse. We have wonderful qualities that they do not possess so they want to ruin us and their mission is to capture us in their evil web so we become broken and unable to love another deserving good soul. All of US must get out of that web, it is an evil trap. Once out, then we are healed. It has been 7 months and I am still trying to escape the web. I am moving far away I think that will be the best thing for me, he lives too close and I am scared to run into him, he even stalked me on a dating site (I was happy to see he aged in 7 months from the photo I saw, lol, deep forehead lines from whoring and partying and he looks like he put on weight too, yay Karma).

    What pisses me off is why are these mentally disordered people allowed to freely roam amongst us to wreak havoc and not be held accountable? England is getting narcissistic abuse laws passed, why isn’t the U.S.?

    Peace & Love


    • Thank you so much…

      I thought I was in a normal relationship with occasional ups and downs. We were together for a little over a year. That’s when it hit me, this is not a normal loving relationship. I was starting to disappear; he was pulling into his world with his children. It just didn’t feel right. I left and went back to my comfortable surroundings.

      I started googling and came across a few articles about Narcissists. I was in shock. It was like someone documented my 1yr relationship exactly. He also followed the pattern of Idealization, Devaluation, and Discards to the letter. I instantly implemented “No Contact”. I refuse to let that bastard get the best of me and win his demented game. All narcissists are cowards.

      I agree the US needs to pass narcissistic abuse laws. It would be very hard for them to get their “narcissistic supply” in JAIL!!!!


  21. I have PTSD, I do not want it to turn into CPTSD. I fight it every day. Apparently I was born into the evil narcissistic socio and psychopath world. I became a co-dependent from the childhood abuse and unbeknownst to me the abuse from my evil family made me a target for future abuse. That old adage, “abused people continue attracting abusers”, is true. I have tried to be particular when making friends and having boyfriends, but I was unaware of the mental orders and their characteristics until this last nasty involvement with one of them. I did recognize as an adult that control freak personalities turned me off and I usually got away from them, however, we were not taught about evils in high school and even with all my college psychology coursework, no textbook or other required reading, except Hurt People Hurt People, came relatively close to teaching about the mentally disordered. So us people pleasers go out into the world, unprepared for what lurks. I would bet that every narcissistically abused person has experienced narcissistic abuse prior to the “wake up call” or the most recent evil in our lives. Most likely all of us fell hard for the last one or tolerated years of abuse before getting out or being discarded. The last evil is usually our “wake up call” and we find ourselves reading as much as we can about what they are and the aftermath we suffer from after they are gone.

    The evils seek out us people pleasers, they can also easily seek out each other. Often times, their minions are people like them, they attract each other to be their “hang out group”. Their minions also consist of just random individuals where they will use each other for sex behind their main partners back, mostly heterosexuals, but this pertains to any sexual preference. The mental disorders do not play favorites, wherever there is a brain host, the mental disorders happily live. Since the evil’s brains are half developed when compared to that of a normal brain, (MRI’s clearly show the difference), studies indicate they pretty much all act similar, and the reason is they have no conscious, no boundaries, and they don’t CARE. Granted, some of the evils are hard core criminals, the others abuse their victims in the gray area, where only the ones closest to them see them without their masks of deception.

    The aftermath is the worst. It’s like they are still around in our brainwashed minds even though they are not physically in our lives. That is the worst part of the mental abuse, they manipulated our brains to think about them, even when most of us despise them, and do not want any memory of them whatsoever.

    My ex narcissistic psychopath is MR of Jacksonville, Florida, owns a company and he is a dangerous master manipulator. He follows the pattern of Idealization, Devaluation, and Discard phases to the letter. He told me I would never figure him out — wrong! When I did, he was shocked and needed to discard fast. They hate being exposed. He also did the smear campaign about me with his minions, but the disordered will always shift the insanity back at the normals. They are miserable people and get off hurting good hearted people leaving us to figure out how we heal from them after they played with our emotions. MR needs to be in jail, he purposefully with intent set out to destroy me. Evils do feel bad things like jealousy, they must be so full of jealousy and evil thoughts that the game of destruction gives them a high much like all the orgasms they have with various people.

    While you are healing or if you are healed here is a good quote a friend shared with me, (unknown author) to remember to get better first before finding that special someone you deserve.

    “I was looking for someone to inspire me, motivate me, support me, keep me focused…
    Someone who would love me, cherish me, make me happy, and I realized that all along I was looking for myself.”

    Love yourself first, get healed completely, rediscover who you are, give yourself a big hug, take out the inner child in you and say everything is going to be okay that you are perfect for you and no one is going to hurt you again.

    Peace & Love


  22. These comments (and article) are great. I’ve only recently heard of this illness (today, actually). I thought perhaps he had Asperger’s, but perhaps narc instead. How do you tell the difference?


  23. It’s been 3 months for me with no contact. I know its new and I’m going through depression. Can’t seem to beat the lonely stage and consanstly beating myself up. I feel I have ruined friendships over this relationship cuz no one quite understands what it does to a person. So I feel even more kinky and so lost. Reading comments and article helps tremendous. Thank you all for sharing.


  24. Folks is it OK if a guy places a comment . just checking really


      • Thanks,

        Brief intro I think.

        I was with my N for 6 years with a her induced break in the middle for 8 months, we got back together after an out of the blue text, I know now to be called hoovering. (((Also probably relevant to mention I was married for 20 years to a woman who it turns out was a bi-polar sufferer, (I say was because she now believes she is not) only came to light after our son was born, she had numerous episodes, bad enough for the doctors to ”section” her in to hospital for a total of nearly 2 years in 5 early on.. so stressful sort of covers that, it was eventually recommended by my doctor that I leave after 20 years to protect my own physical health. The stress and anxiety was too much))) so probably vulnerable and the N was sexy, charming my specific type, I thought myself to have been lucky. So I did the full emotional, physical, financial investment piece, on both occasions, with the N.

        So the N also had 3 separate days when she just walked out, after some heavy rage moments from her, 7 humungous rages in 18 months, and yes these were getting worse and more frequent.

        She finally done a moonlight 4 and a half months ago, during the day while I was golfing on a Saturday for all the neighbours to see, very damaging exit. I haven’t seen or spoken with her since, and we live in a reasonably close knit town, I know she’s playing at least 3 guy’s just now, I have not been asking as no contact is THE RULE, but these guy’s have the stories written all over their faces, but I also know it to be fact (BTW we are both 53, so not kids) so after reading some of the comments above, I’m still in comparison to others, in the early stages.

        So why did I ask if I could reply….

        Went to speak to a therapist 3 days after she left because this time (despite the hurt and anger and loss) I knew I was never taking her back so how could I build my defences, how could I heal the hurts… what I have read and heard and written has got me to this stage, I’ve also written down all the issues, hurts, thoughts hopes and fears, printed it today in fact and if it was A5 size, it is 74 pages long. Copied in some professional text to validate my own experiences so I hope it flows well.

        I’m only out nearly 4 and a half months, but even 3 months ago though I was saying when will this get better because it was complete torture, my head was all over the place, despite being told it will probably be a year or even longer. I thought what the HELL this cannot go on, so I just figured I would try and think about it differently.


        After 2 visits to the therapist, this was the first time I’d heard of Borderline, Narcissism PD’s with a mix of a couple of others…. so the reading began…. the therapist is now using my template for other abused clients. quite proud of that actually. I’ve only been twice because the rest of the time was invested in learning, I’m going to visit her one last time this month which will take me to 5 months out and get a professional view on my 74 pager…. if it flows well and makes sense I’ll share after that if it gets validated if you want, if it helps one other person then it will be worth it.

        74 A5 pages later, I feel ready to move on already, not into a relationship, but just go out again and have some fun again, and if I see her.

        I’ve got the strength to just plain ignore her as if I never ever knew her. If she comes up to me I’ll not acknowledge her as a known person, and to be very fair, that would be the truth, I don’t know you, you are not the person that I fell in love with, you just kinda look like her.

        Just told myself 3 months ago, imagine you’ve broken your leg in 6 different places, and one break does not heal until the one below it heals first. Sometimes it can help to make the specific hurts physical (not only emotional) and the physical will heal, there are no amputations allowed here. So no idea if this helps, but one break or fracture at a time, allow yourself the time to heal the small fractures or breaks first, so, it would help if you can prioritise the bits you are struggling with, whether that’s external to the N or internal to yourself, or a mix of both..

        I am now getting through most of the day without this gnawing at the front of my mind, more of a slight tug at the back of my mind in the form of a benign anger that I let myself go through this for so long. I’m out again this weekend and I’m looking forward to it with no apprehension at all, although I’m getting my mental strength back, I feel there will be a nervy twinge at some point in the night, but I’m expecting it so I’m not going to worry about it.

        I have no clue if this makes any sense with you, or is even relevant to how you folks are feeling. A determined driven change of perspective for me and that has made a huge difference.

        Hope and trust you are all making progress in your journey… this is not intended to make anyone feel inadequate given my out time versus some of yours.. but prioritising and focus is getting me through.

        Wish you all well


  25. Desiree DeSpain

    would like more info on narcissists


  26. Have you read Melanie Tonia Evans books? They are excellent recovery tools. It’s a daily struggle day by day and your blog hit it on the head perfectly for me today.


  27. I m a 53 year old daughter of a narcissist mother.She is the cruelest person I know plus her golden child, my brother.I have cut ties with both.After my father passed in 1997 they both have taken it upon themselves to be cruel and abusive to me.I m at this point in my life now where I don t give damn about what anyone thinks about cutting ties.I ve never had any kind of true, bonding relationship with my family.I guess it made cutting ties easy.My mother is a backstabbing devil.She has no remorse.She is sick in her mind and you cant reason with her.My adive.Keep moving forward, don t look back anymore, put your energy into those who truly love you.Good Luck to all of you struggling.


  28. Thank you! i really HATE to think where I would be and what state Id be in by now if I hadn’t found out about this stuff and found all these great online supports and resources (Ive never used the internet or Facebook in this way before!)! I of course include your Facebook Page which was the first one I started using from memory. Although I still look at your site (& interact a little again now as Ive made a different Page for myself) I was really scared about privacy etc so found a closed group and then became involved in helping out on one a little myself – it is great to be able to give back to others (for me that helps me to remember where I came from and is a way to give forward my immense gratitude for all the wonderful help Ive received!!). i really do feel like its saved my life in a way!!!
    And yes Ive been making sure to REALLY get clear with myself about not only the vulnerabilities but the STRENGTHS I have that my ex found out all about & used against me!!! so Im tweaking my vulnerabilities and reclaiming and learning to better protect my strengths I guess?
    I’m still mind boggled at how well he sussed me out! I was incredibly careful to take my time with him and not give away too much too soon, i had good boundaries in place and I even put him to the “test” a number of times…to the point of taking him to couple therapy early on to do a preliminary relationship “health check” before taking the next step in our relationship. At the end of the session, the counsellor turned to me and said he was a good guy!!! She did also suggest that we could do a workshop for couples starting out in relationships – I really thought that was a good idea, and so I thought did my ex (he certainly acted all keen and willing!)… But “somehow” it never came to be!! 😦 That was perhaps my mistake…I don’t know….. 😦 He was SOO covert (a very nice, humble, gentle, helpful, caring, sensitive guy!!!) as I now understand and I had NO idea until it was way too late…… I have NEVER experienced ANYTHING like this before in my life…… And I HAVE had some very significant challenges in my life here and there ….but NOTHING that compares to this!! 😦 my trust is so damaged it will take some time to repair and I know that I will probably be more susceptible to attracting someone similar again because of how much confidence Ive lost…so I will keep alert (not alarmed) and keep working on strengthening my understanding & skills in protecting myself and paying attention to red flags etc etc. Blaaaa ❤


    • You’re welcome!!! Im glad you found a closed group that you could work through things with. 🙂 It was always the intention to create one, but life took over, and you know how that goes. 🙂

      They are so insidious like this. The sneak in, past all the defenses, and say just what YOU need to hear to get you to drop them and begin trusting them, only to prove in the end that they did it as a sport. No empathy whatsoever for your personal harm or destruction. I so wish that defrauding / psychopathy was prosecutable, because the damage is VERY REAL.

      I hope and pray for your continued healing – Stay the course!!! Eventually, we will ALL be able to say this is BEHIND us 100%!


  29. Yes that is spot on!! ❤
    Im doing ok… Its been about 1.5 years since my ex of 15 years finally left!! I knew I hadnt veen travelling well for a long time.. It wasnt until he left I started to understand why… Ive been using a closec online support group & really good therapist who gets this stuff to help me through it all. We have a child together so ive had to learn how to look aftrr myself (& our daughter) & to deal wiyh him. Its been really hard but Im getting there. My boundaries are pretty good now- they were pretty good when I met him, as were a lot of other things about me & how I functionec (not perfect but not bad either)…he just about destroyed all that an me by the time he was finished with me! 😦 But im feeling much more confident & hopeful now… Still a process of ups & downs though….real "growing up" stuff! ❤


    • Yay for you!!!! So happy to hear!!! It’s tough of course, and yes, such a bitter pill to swallow, when we didn’t deserve this abuse in the first place. Just always remember, that the disorder is about the narcissist. Your job now is to shore up your vulnerabilities (like you said: “grow up”) 🙂 Love yourself and love your baby and teach him/her the Golden rule. Best of the best to you!! ❤ ❤


  30. Ummm…well, with all due respect TotallyCaroline and ANA, the idea of leaving it all in God’s hands is somewhat meaningless to me because Im not a believer in God. This is NOT to say that the essence of what you are suggesting might not be useful but you may have to “translate” a little for those of us who dont hold religious beliefs perhaps?
    Although I personally dont believe the Bible is the word of God (please I sincerely mean NO offence by this and dont invite argument – Im perfectly content to very respectfully agree to disagree!) I nevertheless dont think everything in the bible is necessarily menaingless or useless – there is certainly some wisdom theough the book! In fact I did many years ago come across part of a prayer that I found profoundly comforting, full of exquisitely simple & practical wisdom and it has stuck with me ever since. I often use it as a sort of “mantra” at times of great uncertaintly, suffering and fear…Im sure you might recognise it…my apologies for forgetting which Prayer it comes from but I do recall it is an important one….

    “…grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, change the the things I can and the wisdom to know the difference.”

    I also meditate at times to summon up the strength & courage to get through & do whatever it is I need to do that is really difficult & challenging or rather than to wish it away so that my life can be easy always.

    Are these notions and practices along the lines of what you are getting at?? Either way, I thank you both for getting me thinking and reminding myself of these simple but very helpful practices I have used many times and lost touch with during my time with the narcissist! ❤


    • Its entirely ok to disagree!! 🙂 What we have put up with from a narcissist, you won’t have to put up with here. There is no desire to control or defend my own position by striking yours down. I honor your opinion and your right to have it. It’s what allows you to be YOU! I’d much rather have you be genuine than go along with my opinions, 100%.

      Now to your question: The serenity prayer doesn’t have to involve God if you choose not to. You could modify it for your understanding which would be that You come to know the difference between the things you can control and the things you can’t and that you obtain the wisdom to know the difference.

      You cannot control other people and with that realization comes serenity – You CAN control yourself, which will give you a lot of courage and power and that it requires wisdom to differentiate between these two states of “control” if you will. 🙂

      I don’t know if this helped, but I sure hope you are able to form strong boundaries around yourself and recognize how separate, special and lovable you are unlike the narcissist who abused you.


  31. You know, sometimes you really do have to leave it to God. I mean, there is only so much we can do. Sometimes things are just to out of control and you dont know which way is up anymore.


  32. I remember lying in bed at night and praying and asking God to make me stop hurting, to make everything okay again. I had lost all of my joy, and I didn’t know how to pick up all of the pieces of myself and put them back together again. It took a long time, but I did it. I’m still doing it. I think it will be a lifelong struggle, because I’m attracted to narcissists, and right now, even though I am so much happier and finally feel free of my ex, I still doubt by ability to enter into a relationship and be able to identify a narcissist before I am caught in the trap. My last remaining paranoia is my fear of getting into that kind of abusive relationship again, and I am having a hard time trusting MYSELF enough to try.


  33. Reblogged this on Happily Ever After OR The Search For and commented:
    It’s a long hard journey and I guess mine has only just begun…..
    The stages described are spot on. It’s true that when you finally feel like you are ahead of the “game” another trigger pops up and sets you back. However each time I am able to recover and get back on right where I left off for the most part. Two steps forward, one step back…..


  34. Four years of searching soul, trying to heal and move on, I just learned I suffered at the hand of a so called minister (narcissist) for nearly 30 years. Finally, it all makes sense but certainly doesnt ease the chilling pain of destroying a family.


  35. Definitely an excellent and helpful article. As well, all the comments from you readers. I was just beginning to be too hard on myself for not making more progress in my recovery from a narcissistic man. It has not been two months yet and the relationship was on and off again for five years. What a helpful read to learn to be patient with myself, don’t put a time limit on the recovery, and realize that so many people have experienced the pain, sadness, and embarrassment to have remained a part of it for far too long. Although from the comments it appears it is a long and hard recovery, I am hopeful that one day I will feel better. Thank you for all your honest comments as they help in understanding the situation from your first-hand experiences. Particularly, Sharon and Michelle were very helpful in their insight and explanations. I will continue to go forward, learn from this experience, and take the needed time to heal.


  36. I have just found this site and am very grateful. I find this time of year really difficult. On the run from a narcissistic family and ex partner who lacked empathy I suffered a major head trauma in 2005 around the end of June. That was two years before the most painful relationship of my life. When I met him I was very lonely and vulnerable. I had sleep difficulties due to PTSD. The first night I spent with him I felt my body spin and I fell down and hit my head. He picked me up and told me he would take care of me and I would never be alone again. That was the first lie. It was also the beginning of the nightmare and ongoing disrupted sleep. In the first week he was accusing me of being “too vulnerable”. He at least had insight into the fact he would hurt me. The first date he left me sitting on the beach while he surfed for two hours and ate sandwiches I made for him. He was a surfer and would be gone most mornings for up to 3 hours. By the time he came back I would be beside myself. I was told that the surf would always come first, the he could not care about my needs as his came first. The slightest amount of perceived criticism (which was really a request for him not to do something) was met with anger and the silent treatment. So many silent treatments happened. He would then say how out of line his behaviour was but that it was my fault. I was constantly destabilised. The relationship has been over for nearly three and a half years, but I still don’t sleep through the night. Things he said about me and to me, especially near the end shattered my confidence and belief in myself as a worthwhile person and still reverberate in my head. I am making slow steps forward but it is still hard. I spend a lot of time alone because it feels safer. It really helps to hear that others still struggle after a considerable period of time. I have brighter times but have been feeling low over the past few weeks. I know there is healing from this and it is a lesson to learn to begin to care for and love ourselves. I am learning to set boundaries with my family. Thanks to everyone on here who is sharing their experiences and stories.


    • “I was constantly destabilised.” This.

      I chased my tail thinking if I could jump through the hoops then I would be good enough. If I said it the way he said I should then he would hear me and understand. Of course, none of my efforts ever made things better. If I did x perfect, he was angry about y. …destabilised, thank you for that.


  37. I really don’t know where to begin. All I can say is that it’s been a long, hellish nightmare with my ex boyfriend. He was charming at the beginning…we decided to become exclusive; he went out of his way and bought me gifts. He was also in barber school at the time and worked odd jobs. Even though he didn’t really have time to take me out because of his schedule, he did promise me that we would do that upon completion of his barber license. I wanted to be a supportive girlfriend and started helping him out financially because he was short on gas money or needed something to eat or need help with his phone bill etc. I did everything to let him know that I cared. Well, after he finished with barber school, I expected for us to start going out and doing things as a couple. When I asked about it, he made some lame excuse as to why it couldn’t do it or the fact that it wasn’t a good time. Then he complained about my appearance saying that I didn’t look good enough to take out. In addition, the affection totally stopped. He didn’t touch me unless we were having sex. Little by little, he started behaving in ways to make me feel insecure. I eventually started feeling lonely because he didn’t contact me as much as he used to. By the way, his preferred method of communication was via text. He would often ignore me and when I expressed concerns about him taking me for granted, he became verbally abusive towards me. I was called all kinds of hurtful, derogatory names and I was referred to as stupid, dumb etc. When I cried & told him that I was hurt by his words, he didn’t care. As a matter of fact, it made him angrier. It’s as if he enjoyed kicking me when I was down. Then he would turn around and start demanding that I give him more money because he had things to take care of. This became a routine thing for him as if he was entitled to a portion of my paycheck. If I couldn’t give him the amount he needed, he would become very angry and ignore me for several days. On top of that, half the time he didn’t even acknowledge my efforts and say thank you. I became increasingly afraid of his temper and found it very hard to put my foot down and say ‘no’.

    During one of our arguments, he claimed that he never wanted me and denied the fact that we were in a relationship… I was broken hearted that he would say such a cruel thing. Yet he continued to act is if I was his woman even though he claimed that we were not in a relationship. During another argument, I blurted out that I was seeing someone else. Of course, he became very angry & accused me of cheating of him even though he had recently said that he was never my man to begin with. Later he slammed me against the wall and choked me for cheating on him. Everything was so confusing. We had a very dysfunctional relationship….my self esteem has been shattered and I still struggle with the pain that he inflicted on me. He would threaten me thru texts and was scared to get a restraining order because he intimidated me. Yet he doesn’t care if I am hurt by all this. He never took responsibility for anything and always blamed me for everything that went wrong. He told me that he wasn’t going to change and that I needed to be submissive in order to please. Basically, I was the one doing all the work as far trying to keep the relationship afloat. At some point, he claimed that I was now his woman and yet he continued to mistreat. He was very cruel to me. We had broken up so many times…it was a dizzying experience. He never wanted to listen to what I said…my feelings didn’t matter. My ex didn’t like discussing issues and ignored my concerns. I was also verbally attacked whenever I pointed out his flaws. I had also tried to get him to participate in productive conversation but he was very resistant to any suggestions that I had. It was impossible to sustain a relationship without any effort on his part..he refused to compromise. I resented him for that. He denied hurting me…he that I’ve always been weak and insecure all along and that he is not at fault. Like said we had broken up multiple times. He said that I was the problem…not him. In my last email to him, I poured out my heart and told him that I couldn’t do this anymore (you see, I helped him out again financially and he didn’t say thank you as usual…I told him that I was feeling used, taken for granted, mistreated,). He responded with F* CK YOU, F*CK YOUR LETTERS, F*CK YOUR LETTERS. DO NOT CALL, TEXT OR EMAIL ME. I WILL GET THE SHERIFF INVOLVED YOU NUT CASE.

    I am so blown away by this..he would rather treat me this way instead offering an apology. All the time and effort that I put into this was a total waste. I am so drained and now have to find a way to heal from the trauma that I endured. It hurts to know that he never cared in the first place. My self-esteem has become eroded…I cry everyday…


    • Wow…a wonderful, well written piece that touches the soul of the hurting! What you wrote, lit up something inside me that radiated comfort, love and hope. I know now I will get better when I don’t set a time limit of achieving a wellness state. At my own pace, not will I just recover, but I will be “me ” again. And, only when my mind joins with my heart, will I be free of the tears, sadness, hurt, loss, anger, jealousy, envy, and other distructive emotions. I just wonder what does the narcissist give the abused? Perhaps, for me, it is that I will become whole again and enlightened. I will “be true to one’s self”. And, most importantly, I can love me and let go of the one that only dreams of love, but can’t experience it. In essence, he could never be “the mirror of myself”. For he is damaged, disenchanted and demonic.


    • Tra1968, your experience sounds very recent. This guy sounds a lot like my ex Narcissistic Sociopath. It’s true, they don’t care about what they did to you. They don’t take responsibility because they have no conscience. And they never will. I am so very glad you are now out of this false relationship. You have been through such a trauma.

      With regard to your healing I would firstly seek professional therapy as I have. I can’t tell you how much this has helped me.

      Secondly, with your story. I know you want and really need to get it out as you should. In my own experience, I told anyone and everyone who would listen to my painful story. I would now advise against this for the reason that, you could be sharing your story with another Narc/Sociopath. They could be male or female. You will be giving them all the information they need to collect about you so they can abuse you themselves at a later date. Other people will take pleasure in your misery and kick you while you are down. Others will see you as playing the victim (which you are) but they don’t like victims and will shun you. This is known as victim blaming where people blame you for what the perpetrator did. Quite disgusting, I know. What I would advise, pouring your heart out to those on genuine sites with people who do understand what you’ve been through. I wish someone had told me all this earlier, it would have spared me more pain.

      Third, educate yourself about Cluster B personality types. Learn the Red Flags. Learn it all, but don’t become obsessed. You have to let it go. What you focus on, you attract. I’ve learned that the hard way too.

      Develop some healthy boundaries to protect yourself. The reason we were targeted is because we are kind, empathetic people and our boundaries had weaknesses.

      Lastly, please just be kind and good to yourself. Do nice things for yourself. Don’t beat yourself up for falling in love. You were conned by a master manipulator and this is not your fault.


    • nicole walker

      Sweetheart…..I know this hurts….and I don’t know how long you put into this narc. But take it from me 20 years of marriage and 3 additional years of dating later, you will be glad that is happened sooner than later.


  38. This was such a beautifully written article that was relate able on all levels. I have been out of my 16 year marriage with a narcissistic sociopath for 5.5 years. How long does it take to get over what we’ve been through? I’ve asked that same question myself many times. I think perhaps that what has happened to us becomes part of our journey; gives us greater insight and awareness than so many other people will ever have.

    In the beginning of my healing process I was very raw. I didn’t think there could be others both men and women out there just like him. I just didn’t think it was possible. Because of my lack of knowledge of sociopath and narcissism, I was unable to spot red flags in others. I had no boundaries and was too trusting and open in new relationships. This led me to become easy prey for narcissist after narcissist or toxic people. They have a way of targeting people like us. I have been hurt over and over. I don’t trust easily anymore either and although I do talk to lovely people every day, I keep the wall up. It’s just sad I can’t let anyone in. I can relate to much of what Michelle Mallon said about reading and re-reading things you’ve already read as the information doesn’t sink in the first time. It’s all just too incredible for our minds to conceive as you are trying to put all the pieces and experiences together. You have to go back over it until it does. Because of everything I have experienced and read, I now have much stronger boundaries than before.

    Through therapy, I’ve found out that both of my parents are narcissists, particularly my mother. I went from the ‘arms’ of my parents straight into the ‘arms’ of my now ex-husband. So it’s been a life long journey and therapy is ongoing.

    How do we recover? I don’t think we will ever be able to fully, it will always be there. But, we don’t have to let it define us. I see some of victims around the internet recently into recovery who are very raw and angry just as I was. Even the two to three year mark is still raw. Let me assure you though the anger, pain and obsessive thoughts will slowly fade into the background.

    Self work is a must along with raising your boundaries and recognizing the red flags. Always be very aware of people who are just too nice to you up front, they’re too good to be true. They’ll try to hook you in with love bombing, fake flattery, validation, constant attention and gifts. That’s how it all starts and that’s right about where you can stop it with your boundaries and protect yourself from the pervasive pattern that usually follows. I’ve learned to give people and new associations the test of time.

    We have to learn to love ourselves enough to protect and care for our well being.

    I wish all of you peace.


  39. MaryAnne Dennis, I am incredibly honored to know that my comment has been helpful to you!


  40. We can never put the abuse behind us. That would be lying to ourselves.What happens when we go to bed and all those horrible memories invade us? This is true for every alone time.But we can move on by admitting that it happened and not deny it.Once we do this, there can be love, laughter and everything positive.


  41. 11 years since I broke free of my manipulative sociopath of a boyfriend of 3 years, and I still hate him. I have tried at various times to forgive him, thinking it would somehow free me, but it just doesn’t ever work. The effects of being in a relationship with this person has tainted all relationships of every kind since. I’m suspicious of everyone for a long time before I can trust them, thanks to the way the mutual “friends” of myself and that narcissist bought into his lies about me after our break up. I get very triggered by anyone trying to minimize a problem I’m having, or something that isn’t feeling right to me. I just feel like I will lash back at anyone who tries to come near me with the same kind of manipulation that one did….11 YEARS LATER. Will I ever be able to be free of it? I often wish I could have that part of my memory wiped clean, so that I would have the kind of fresh optimism I used to have about meeting new people and getting to know them. You know how it goes, though….Working on it…..


    • I feel your pain. I tore into a client whose been telling me he’d pay his bill since January. I just snapped and really said some things that were not professional. I realized it was all a trigger. A new wonderful woman I went on a few dates with has come into my life and I find myself unable to feel any sexual attraction to her despite how warm and beautiful she is. I am constantly reliving the abuse. I’m on day 120ish of no contact. I had stopped counting a few weeks ago. I thought I had grown past it. I came back from being out of town and instantly felt triggered on my return. I slipped back into the darkness again. There was one thing different though this time. At the bottom of the hole where I had spent months sobbing and bleeding, I wasn’t alone anymore. I felt myself inside my chest. I am so thankful I am here for me. It’s hard but not impossible anymore. I am here for me. I love myself which is something my ex wouldn’t tollerate.


  42. Thanks for this post. I find it much longer than I ever wanted or expected this to be…very frustrating indeed…guess I’m not alone, and at least now I get what I’m going through.


  43. You are so very welcome Kate :o) Something about having been through this seems to make us want to reach out to others who are where we used to be. I remember how important it was to me to have other survivors who had made their own ways through this journey cheering me on during some of my lowest times. I will be forever grateful to every single one of them! Love to you, too!


  44. Thanks so much for your “terribly long (but beautifully written & expressed) message” Michelle Mallon! 🙂 And thank you to everyone else who has also responded here also! I always feel encouraged by the messages of other survivors! Much love to you all! ❤


  45. manboobzrules

    trusting ourselves!

    narc’s put a nag in us along the lines of’if i am caring for myself first, does that make me a narc too?’

    no! narc’s don’t even contemplate such things lol so, get down with your bad self and BE happy, as ET omce said

    i survived, barely and literally physically barely, a horrifically narc mother…they are infectious to the negative…manipulative, emotional ticks who never have their fill…you are not…spread joy to yourself, then to others and let it flow….

    yeah, sometimes you get fooled even when you’ve seen the best….a few years back i got involved with a roomate who was pathological, deluded, etc…..but, once i spotted him out he got the boot….it took less than 2 months to realize the cretin was a cretin….earlier in my life, his ‘pass’ or my propensity to ‘work things out’ would’ve drug on for much longer and left me more surprised and devestated than now….

    life can feel lonely for anybody….don’t let a normal human experience stack up as ‘one more thing’ against you…when i’m critical of myself, i do have to dig down and think,’is this my voice or hers?’….i can usually tell by how loathsome i feel vs how motivated…

    it is very difficult to survive emotional abuse…there’s no physical scar to show a potential friend and say’see? this is from that time my mother tormented me in one of her many drunken stupors and it’s still not totally healed’….

    i wish i had a magic, universally appliable answer….daily effort? idk :(….but, not enough victims, imho, assert our right to be happy, or, we don’t believe it enough….


  46. Having been through the hardest parts of healing, I have a little bit of insight into what this up and down, two steps forward and one step back process is all about (at least how it felt to me). Healing after Narcissistic abuse is, in my opinion, one of the most difficult things I have ever been through in my life. However, I can say with a very high degree of certainty that the person I was before the abuse would be proud of the person I have become today. That long, difficult, agonizing process of working through the trauma we have experienced is full of deeply important insight that will help us emerge as stronger people. The process is very long for a reason- there’s a lot to be done. Immediately after the abuse, we recognize that something truly terrifying has happened to us and because we do not understand what happened, we know it can happen again. And that is frightening! Unless we endure the painful work of sorting out the reality of what happened and how we were led so far out of our comfort zones by someone so destructive, we should be afraid!

    The extremely long process of healing has so many important milestones in it that are really only recognizable after you have made it through and can look back at all of the important work you have done along the way. The significance of the journey cannot be understated. The trauma we endured shakes us to the very core despite the fact that no bruises are visible. For many of us, immediately after the abuse, we find ourselves utterly confused about who we even are anymore. That is an enormous loss and one that will not be resolved easily. Because the journey is so long and difficult, many never make it all the way through. They move on with their lives still vulnerable to future attacks by other Narcissists. In fact, many of us reading this beautifully written article above may have already come to the realization that the abuse we just endured isn’t the first Narcissistic attack we have ever endured. Not fully healing from this type of abuse leaves us incredibly vulnerable to future attacks by Narcissists. Since Narcissists have a keen sense for finding very vulnerable people to prey on, odds are we will be found by another one. It’s really just a matter of time before we are found with our tender hearts bleeding, looking for another opportunity to prove that the previous lost relationship wasn’t for a lack of us trying.

    Considering all that is at stake, healing from this should be a long process. First, there is much about ourselves that we must discover in order to understand what happened in the abusive relationship. Although no victim ever asks to be harmed by a Narcissist, there are things that we must learn about ourselves that help us to pinpoint how a Narcissist was able to lure us away from our comfort zones. The process of healing almost always involves the painful discovery that this wasn’t our first Narc attack either. As we heal, we identify very unsettling revelations about painful relationships we endured in the past. Those too become a part of our healing process because they contain vital clues about what made us vulnerable in the most recent attack. So what typically starts out as a mission to heal from one horribly destructive relationship sometimes ends up being a journey to heal from multiple losses. And as we realize this, the importance of understanding what is happening becomes even more important to us than ever because we know what is at stake.

    But the most important reason this takes so damned long is because during the process our brains are protecting us from being utterly overwhelmed by understanding and insight. I can’t tell you how many times I read the same book about healing from Narcissistic abuse only to find that the second, third and fourth times I read it I picked up different messages that I didn’t see the first few times I read it. Sometimes I would read the book and think I took in all it had to offer in terms of insight to healing, only to find that weeks or a month later I was turning my house upside down looking for the book because I felt compelled to read it again. I didn’t know then why I felt I needed to read it. It was only after this happened a few times that I began to realize my brain was allowing me to take in only what it could handle and then sending me out to get more when it was ready.

    I also learned that those awful “triggers” held some of the most profound insight I could ever imagine. Part of the reason why my journey took so long was because I didn’t understand that part of healing. Every trigger made me think I was never going to get over what happened. I would get so mad at myself because once again I was being humbled by something I thought I was beginning to move on from. I was extremely impatient with myself and that alone caused my journey to take longer. I can tell you that even though it feels like we are only a “shell of a person” after the abuse, our brains are still functioning quite well. It’s almost like we are in a dormant state with our brains shutting down a lot of other higher functions until we can get ourselves to safety. Until we begin to recognize that a big part of our journey to healing will be demonstrating to ourselves that we can make a commitment allowing ourselves to heal at the pace our brains say we need to, the whole process can drag on indefinitely. That’s the true irony of the situation, in my opinion. The more impatient you are with the process, the longer it takes. Once you are able to say (and truly mean it) that you will allow the process to be what it is and do what it needs to do, everything changes. At some point, if we allow them, those “triggers” become crucial insights to propel us forward. At some point, we begin to recognize Narcissists simply by the way we feel when they are around us. And at that point we become more aware of how to safely navigate the world around us despite having these awful people in it with us.

    But despite the fact that healing from this type of abuse takes what seems like a lifetime, the view at the end of this tunnel is truly magnificent! When you hear some survivors say that they have been able to recognize “the gift” in what they have been through, that is what they are referring to. It is indescribable to anyone who hasn’t been through this.

    Something this transformative should take a long time.This is truly one of the most amazing journeys I have ever taken. There was a time in this where I thought I would have to keep every vulnerable, sensitive part of myself locked up behind heavy duty, bullet-proof glass just to keep them safe. Now after making this journey I have reclaimed everything I thought I would have to hide away. This time last year, I would never have believed this was even possible.

    Thanks for listening to this terribly long message.

    Michelle Mallon, MSW, LSW

    Liked by 1 person

    • Wow! Michelle Mallon, I really needed to know that right now, you have helped me understand myself at this time so much better. I was questioning my own sanity & am full of self doubt on my own journey to healing, constantly searching for answers & a way out that will get me there faster…but its a process I have to undo all the knots If I am to truly heal & understand & not make the same mistakes again. It seems the more I learn the more it hurts, the more I recognize these traits in others close to me, the stronger i become, but the sadder at the realisations. Some of the these people I cant let go of and have to work out the best way to create distance but continue to exist with them in my life, others I have already let go of…these are people I once loved but now realise this is futile. Sometimes I just want to give up & give in…but I wont.

      Thank you so much for your terribly long message it was so insightful.

      Liked by 1 person

  47. I would imagine, like most things, it will never be anything you can ever entirely & completely put behind you forever. As if it never happened? As we were before it happened? How is that even possible? And how unrealistic an expectation might that be to think it is? I think it is an ongoing process, just as life is, of coming to terms with it, finding a place for it within our selves (even of acceptance of it!), recognising that we will always have potential “sensitive spots” under certain circumstances & knowing how to care for ourselves at those times. I’ve had trauma before & have learnt to do all I’ve described…apart from more recently when & how this pathalogical relationship catapulted me over 30 years or so back into the depths of my earlier trauma (and some!) from which I am relieved to say I “bounced back” much quicker than I anticipated (I really thought the relationship had completely undone over 30 years of really good & hard I’d done on myself!), I has accepted in myself that there would be times I’d be triggered but I had become so skilled, competent & lacking in fear about looking after myself at those times it had become easy & like swatting an annoying little fly away… So…I imagine (& can already see it starting to happen here & there after only one year) that in time I will come to terms with this, it will become a part of my life, my lived experience but it will not be all of who I am…. I will never be the same… When are we ever anyway in life (who would want to be? Wouldn’t that be a form of potential stagnation & the beginnings of a sort of entropy?)? At a most profound level I’ve learnt a lot, about myself, life, the human condition….the very worst of it and the very best of it…. For that I’m grateful…I’m growing up…sometimes the hard way, so etimes the lessons have been bitter beyond belief, sometimes it’s felt impossible to go on another step or bear another disappointment, hurt, heartbreak, stress in life….sometimes life has been very unfair….but …that is life for most of us, one way or another….. Learning to love & respect ourselves, to grow up a little more, to allow ourselves to develop strength & beauty in our broken places… To share & pass on what we learn to those who need & reach out for it…. For all that I am grateful…EVEN despite my times still of sadness, grief, regret, anger, hurt, despair & fear…I AM A LIVING BREATHING FEELING THINKING WONDERFUL CREATIVE LOVING HUMAN BEING!! Which is sadly, tragically, inevitably, most certainly more than can be said for these sorry souls we have come so close to be destroyed by!! We are still alive & standing, wiser & more beautiful for all that we have been through & for all that we are still coming to terms with in our own ways in our own time… ❤ anyhoo…that's what came pouring out of me this Autumn day down south of the equator! Love & blessings & strength & courage & patience to you all! 🙂


  48. I did it!!! After 10 years I did it!!! I left!!!


  49. It was like I could have written this myself… 5 years on and I am still stuck….


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