AFTER the CHARM and love-bombing – when we see the real person behind the many facades and masks.
AFTER the CHARM and love-bombing – when we see the real person behind the many facades and masks. It is a world that is so opposite to ours because it is all based on lies, betrayal, emotional manipulation and insatiable needs that we could never fulfill — a world that will completely consume a person and leave them empty and destroyed and THEN we are blamed for not giving them EVERYTHING.
From my Book: Greg Zaffuto – Author – From Charm to Harm and Everything Else in Between with a Narcissist
In the Narcissists grand scheme of things there is never a relationship with any one person as it concerns love, family connections, friendship, growth, goals, dreams, togetherness AND equal rights where any person ever has a separate identity OR meaning to the Narcissist – EVERYONE IS JUST AN OBJECT. Everything and everyone is just an opportunity for extorting supply. Everyone is a “people object” in their world and our connection is nothing more or nothing less than the next person’s. This always becomes painfully obvious within a relatively short period of time when the devaluation starts.
In reality they are thieves, extortionists, pathological liars, manipulators, cheaters, perverse, and dangerous to anybody that has any type of a close relationship with them. Their world is delusional, and they have shored it up with all of these tools to extract what they need from us – it is ALWAYS and only about THEIR needs. To them it is a lifestyle and they don’t think twice about how they destroy lives and families. Unfortunately, we are left with the truth that we were a target of their abuse and must pick up the pieces. We were just a “people or person object” and one of many.
The “Ah Ha” quiz! Do any of these statements define you, or have you experienced any of the following?
1. You always seem to feel physically tense, anxious, some aches and pains, stomach ache, fast heart rate, difficulties breathing and fatigued.
2. You never seem to know what to expect at any given moment on any given day with this PARTICULAR person. You feel like everything is about to turn upside down, even if you have a nice day planned. You just never know if some small thing is going to turn into an argument, or you will be raged at, made fun of, or silenced and punished. Your husband, wife, friend, partner, brother, sister, father or mother is seemingly caring and considerate one moment and then coldly dismisses you the next moment with no warning and no justification.
3. You have developed a severely damaged sense of self-worth and self-esteem and always seem to be second guessing yourself or your worth in every situation with this person.
4. EVERYTHING seems to have a negative spin attached to it. How you cook, how you clean, a gift you give, what you wear, your friends, your job, and your looks – everything is a TARGET FOR NEGATIVE COMMENTS.
5. You have had prolonged bouts of depression and anxiety. You seem to cycle in and out of these periods of depression and anxiety and this seems to be in direct correlation with the chronological time you have spent with this person.
6. You begin to doubt your own existence and your sense of reality as if somebody has kidnapped your spirit.
7. You experience lack of sleep for prolonged periods of time.
8. You feel as if you are not a real person in your relationship, more like a pet that is trained to do tricks like jumping through hoops, etc.
9. You feel as if you are not allowed to voice your own thoughts and opinions or you will be put in your place, raged at and even punished.
10. You feel it is an enormous struggle to be heard or acknowledged as an individual.
11. You feel that every problem in your relationship is somehow your fault and you are always blamed and shamed for everything.
12. You have experience exaggerated feelings of guilt and shame.
13. You are always drawn back into trying to fix or relate to him/her even though you only experience pain/blame/shame in doing so. It becomes a vicious cycle that seems to only get worse.
14. You feel trapped as if in an impossible situation, unable to find a way out.
15. You feel as if you have to fight all the time and are worn out and exhausted or basically forced into a corner all the time.
16. You are confused constantly with racing thoughts, as if you are losing your mind trying to find some sort of peace.
17. You feel as if you are surrounded with negativity. Everything you do, everything you say is met with some sort of comment that negates you or an action you do.
18. Arguments seem to appear out of nowhere.
19. You are made to feel physically ugly and mentally unstable with words or actions from this person.
20. You feel like you are going insane, or better yet pushed to believe you are insane by actions that are not you like forgetfulness, missing items, etc.
21. You are raw with emotions none of which make any sense to you anymore – but you know this feeling all too well anymore. Your thoughts may not even be clear enough at this point to understand that something is terribly wrong with you because you are always in a fog and basically DISSABLED. You are probably thinking of ways to “fix” the relationship AGAIN. Perhaps you may know that the situation is just not right but you are even willing to “fix” him/her, but at what cost to you? You may even be getting ready to crawl back to your partner, but you know the drill so well because it is like a reoccurring dream where you are screaming and can’t be heard or trying to run and you aren’t able to move.
YES to all of the above in my situation – so WHY and HOW did I get there?
Throughout my relationship, I knew that the person I was ‘with’ wasn’t emotionally well, I just didn’t know how unwell AND how emotionally unwell I had become for even wanting to continue and staying in this toxic relationship. I was blind sighted by the ‘love bombing’ and believing the “woe-be-me” stories/excuses in the beginning which are the most dangerous of the tools a Narcissist uses to trap their target.
Normal in my relationship was basically achieving ONE SINGLE DAY without some sort of incident where I was blamed, shamed or punished AND RAGED at for something or other – and usually something delusional or unreal. “Normal” simply meant that my Narcissist was still there and we achieved a complete day without an incident. What was so hidden behind all of this was the reality of just what was there with me – a lying, betraying, perverted, manipulative, cheating, delusional, disordered, vile, and VOLATILE human being that got off on hurting and punishing me. An argument (out of nowhere) would always end up as 3 days of silence and punishment – and the opportunity for this Narcissist to constantly cheat with anything/everything that said yes. This sounds crazy but it is the real truth – UNFORTUNATELY the truth isn’t apparent when we need it to be because they are PRO’s at this game. Add to this that we tend to view the world in a NORMAL or reality based manner, and within that thought process I NEVER thought another adult was capable of doing the things this person did to me and my family. It is like the iceberg theory – what you see above the water is MINOR compared to what is beneath the water!
Being a victim of narcissistic abuse is a severely traumatic life experience that you are dealing with by yourself. If the perpetrator is a person you loved, admired, or looked up to as a role model, or a wife, husband, parent, guardian, friend, relative, etc., you don’t understand the reality because most of the time you love the person, trust them and want to believe in them – you go the extra mile for them. If your professional life is entangled with a Narcissistic boss, getting out of the abusive relationship may be extremely challenging, especially when this is your livelihood, or your bread and butter.
It may seem frightening and insurmountable after the time you have invested, and you may be tempted to put up with more abuse, as an attempt to defuse the situation and save what mattered so much to you in any of the relationships you were entangled in with these cruel monsters. BUT there is no such thing as anything near a normal or real relationship with a narcissist, and you can only learn this the hard and painful way. There is no healthy give-and-take relationship with a narcissist, only a manipulative, crippling, subjugating type of giving and a demanding, exploitative, and insensitive type of taking what the Narcissist wants to fulfil their needs only. People are only objects that a Narcissist uses.
It is especially difficult to accept this when your interactions with them are at the personal, professional, familial or intimate level. How much of yourself, your work, your aspirations, do you have to sacrifice in order to save your life and your psyche from the destructive assaults from your narcissistic abuser?
The Narcissist is always fanatical, extreme, and very dangerous because of their all-pervasive nature that permeates every aspect of their life. Couple that with their non-existent empathy for life and people and you have a very dangerous predator on the loose. The “people objects” that they manipulate into their pervasive world are always the casualties. At stake is NEVER EVER the preservation of the person the Narcissist uses – but instead the Narcissist’s very own NEEDS and survival.
Don’t try to fight a war that you can’t win because a Narcissist lacks any and all morals and no matter what – you do not reach them at any level because they don’t hear us ever. You can’t engage in reality with a person that lacks morals or with issues that require a person to have a conscience and expect to be heard, yet alone find common ground or any sort of closure. Narcissists have no sense of guilt or remorse for their actions. There is NO WAY you can shame them into accepting responsibility for their mindless and thoughtless approach to other people especially if it is “you.” Don’t ever underestimate their depravity as it concerns their lack of respect for life and people – they will abuse anyone that stands in their way, even their own biological children or ANY family member. Put your energy and power back into YOU because you deserve so much better. NO/minimal contact always. Greg