A relationship with a narcissist.
You meet someone new, who’s fantastic and perfect for you in every single way, they are your soulmate, you have found your one true love and life couldn’t be any better.
You believe they love you too and genuinely care for you, you don’t understand that all that love bombing is because all they want is your money, home, lifestyle; they want complete control over you.
Slowly over time, through all their manipulation, you gradually lose everything, including who you are, no longer able to do simple tasks and no longer able even to think straight.
They have sly digs constantly about your insecurities, often followed with a remark from them of “Only joking.” Or “Don’t be oversensitive.” So you doubt yourself.
Once they do have you confused and weak, they will try to take control of all the bills, including the home put solely into their name, cars and bank accounts. Some will take loans and credit cards out in your name. Leaving your credit rating destroyed.
You then start to believe you’re going crazy and incapable of thinking straight because, over time, the narcissist will rewrite history on you and continue to do so with. “That never happened; you must be dreaming.” Or “I never promised that.” “I told you last week. Can you not remember?” Or “yes, it did happen, you must be losing your mind.” when you’re sure it didn’t happen.
Often as you’ll have lost family and friends, some narcissists will move you miles away, leaving the narcissist to be the only person you can lean on, to go for a reality check to be the very person who’s sinking you.
They’ll add to the confusion, every time you seem to be waking from the trance they put you in, every time you start to see reality, they we bring back that loving, kind person you first met, or they’ll say things when you question them that they’ve hurt you or cheated on you. “ It was your fault for not doing this, that, or the other.” Or “if only you’d do this, I wouldn’t have to.”
They will make you too scared to leave, either by having full control over your finances. Saying things like, “You’ll not survive without me.” You may have even lost your job. Or. “No one will ever love you like I do, as you’re crazy.” Or they’ll threaten you, so you’re too scared to leave. Or they’ll pull on your empathy by playing the victim on. “I need you to help me change.”
As you love them and they’ll often play the victim card when needed, you’ll often want to work things out. Help them, talk it through, support them, even changing everything about yourself for them.
You have a good heart and keep trying as you don’t understand that you can not help them or that you can not save the relationship; it’ll only keep bringing you down.
I was that busy helping you. I didn’t see you were hurting me.
You become afraid to do things, walking on eggshells for fear of the narcissist’s reactions, no longer able to go out, speak to friends, speak up for yourself; all freedom is lost.
You know something isn’t right, you don’t know what, and you may be too scared to leave.
You believe you are at fault for causing arguments, and as the narcissist is saying things like. “You’re not the person I met. “You’ve gained weight.” Or “You don’t take care of yourself, you don’t take care of me.” often you are struggling with crippling depression and anxiety, as your so busy trying to please them, you are not able to take care of yourself, so you believe what they are saying to be true, not understanding that being around them is the cause to all your mental and physical health problems. You then begin to try even more to please the narcissist, losing more and more of yourself while they gain more control over you.
When you get to a point, you can not take any more and speak out. As the narcissist sees you coming out of your trance, They’ll say things like. “After all I’ve done for you?” Or “With the state you’re in, no one can love you, you’re lucky to have me. “ or “You are selfish.” Or “ We need to get you some help.”
They may then suddenly bring the nice person back out, so you work harder as you are left with self-doubt and feeling as though you are to blame, you believe, that it was actually you. After all, they are treating you so well, just like they used to.
The narcissist starts acting differently towards you, but not the same as before.
They’re not coming home at the usual time and out more. You suspect cheating, yet you don’t want to ask for fear of looking insecure, and if you do ask, they will gaslight you with. “You’re insecure.” or they project and accuse you of cheating on them. They might even talk about the new person, stating they are. “Just a friend.” Your instinct is telling you, yet because you’ve no evidence, you shut it down.
Then when you’ve had enough and speak up about what’s happening, you’ll be told that you are “Crazy.”
You blame yourself even more. Becoming more and more confused.
You may have completely lost reality now, as the narcissist, gaslights, manipulates and twists all the blame onto you, as you still don’t know what’s happening, you believe them, turning time and time again to them, they may offer you a glimpse of love or false apology, if they feel the need to do so, to send you back into that trance.
Many end up on antidepressants, often with anxiety problems and health problems.
Then, just as you need them the most, they leave, no word no nothing, they’ve just gone, you are left completely lost and driven even further into depths of despair.
You may stalk their social media, trying to work out what’s happening, try contacting them, their friends and family.
They may then reappear, with or without a gift, the false apology’s, or playing victim that they needed space because of you, as you believe it was you, and you’re so grateful, they are ok and back, you take them back.
They bring the love-bombing phase back, and you try even harder to change and please and help them.
This may happen a few times on one of those discards; you may hear or see a photo on social media that they are with someone new. You may then start to compare, try and work out what they have that you didn’t, what you did so wrong to lose your soulmate. You realise you have the capability to heal and jump into trying to heal yourself, and you may stumble across narcissism. Yet the narcissist appears as they’ve noticed your starting to do well for yourself, yet as you’ve not fully let go. You are still trauma bonded; when you start looking, you believe you could be the narcissist, they seem to appear just in time to rescue you again, so you don’t believe what you read as they can be so amazing and at times treat you better than you have ever been treated before. Believing it’s you and try to change again.
Then they take you under again, could be days, weeks, months or years, but they will bring you down again, only this time you’re listening to your instinct, you’re trying your best to stay on top of yourself and reality, either they discard you, or you discard them, one finale time.
Although you know you needed to get out, or you’re grateful they left, and you know you need to stay out, you may have lost everything. Your fight to reclaim who you are and your life begins, yet the narcissist who may have moved on with someone new, even moving, next door, across the road or around the corner, they seem to appear places, you don’t understand, they’ve moved on they are happy, why will they not leave you be, to get on with your life. You may suddenly get their friends and family messaging you; you have to stop feeling guilty, let go of your pride and then block and delete each and every one.
You start to read more about narcissism, trying to get to grips with reality; if you have kids, you’re a good-hearted person, so you try to keep in contact, yet the narcissist, who likes to play the role of a good parent, like every other role they play in life, keeps letting them down, changing plans—still trying to control your every move through your children.
You have to go back over every step of the relationship, putting reality back in, the narcissist constantly on your mind, and you just want to move them out, a roller coaster ride of emotions, as you wean your body off the natural chemicals, it released while you were in the relationship.
You stumble across no contact or grey rock if you’re co-parenting; you start to implement these, making a couple of mistakes along the way as the narcissist slowly ups their games; this may result in restraining orders. Yet, you are becoming more aware of who they indeed are.
You can not stop thinking about them; no matter how much you want to, you know you don’t love or want them, yet they are stuck in your head. Upping the manipulation with the children and the alienation against you, your fighting for your children to have a safe relationship, yet everything is going against you.
You may join support groups, get a life coach, therapist or a psychologist for yourself, endless YouTube information, and google searches. Which slowly helps you piece reality back together, preparing you for things to come, it helps you with your inner healing; you may get psychologists involved to help your children as they may be showing signs of anxiety or depression.
You are gaining knowledge and educating yourself, not only posting on support groups but reaching out to help others, as you know exactly how they feel, that it will be ok and that we need to stick together and support each other through one hell of an emotional rollercoaster of a ride.
You’re healing and becoming more assertive. You’ve learnt to call police on any stunt they pull. You’ve learnt to keep all contact in writing. You’re learning to keep upping your standards and boundaries, while always expecting the unexpected from the narcissist, you are prepared, with your phone always at hand, safe place to get to, you have more awareness, you now understand those who don’t respect you don’t deserve you.
The narcissist heads for mediation or court for divorce, or if you have children, as they’ve pulled such a stunt you had to take no contact action, sometimes advised by the authorities, the schools have photos up of the other parent and all paperwork. They are on stand by, just in case the narcissist appears; it should never happen, but being prepared is better than not. Still, you are wise to their games. You have everything documented. You are stronger, you’ve lost your emotional attachment to the narcissist, the false good side to them is dead to you, the real them you pity and hope they can heal and have a happy life far away from you. You hope they may become a good parent, but your expectations of them have lowered, and it no longer affects you when they let the children down; the children are now good, and so are you. They use the children to try and win them over, they don’t understand children love both parents, they use them as a pawn as it the last thing they have to control or hurt you, they don’t understand you want the children to have a relationship with the other parent, and you’ve given it your all, you will still fight for a contact centre, for the children, yet the narcissist will fail to show after a while.
The police, courts, schools are gaining more awareness, and they are helping you keep the children and yourself safe.
The thoughts about the narcissist will fade day by day. When they do pop in your headspace, you’ll no longer have that emotional attachment and swiftly remove them.
You’ll have grieved, you’ll have wondered, you’ll have developed and grown, and you’ll come out the other side, stronger and wiser, loving life in every way. Well, the odd down moment, but more the normality of life we all the odd down day, but a normal down day now is easy compared to what you’ve been through, no more trauma bond, no more anxiety, no more depression, you may feel sad for the children from time to time, as you love and care. But you’ll see soon remover that thought, and fill them with a happy, joyous life, full of self-love, self-belief, values and boundaries, so they grow into the beautiful people they are meant to be, themselves with their own passions and dreams,
The positive is they’ll know how to be treated, they’ll understand respect, as you’ll have taught them, how to treat others, who to keep in your life and who to remove, they will thrive on positivity, and they will shun negativity.
Wherever you are, keep going; you’ve got this.
Stages of a relationship with a narcissist.
What happens to you in a narcissistic relationship.
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Elizabeth Shaw is not a Doctor or a therapist. She is a mother of five, a blogger, a survivor of narcissistic abuse, and a life coach, She always recommends you get the support you feel comfortable and happy with. Finding the right support for you. Elizabeth has partnered with BetterHelp (Sponsored.) where you will be matched with a licensed councillor, who specialises in recovery from this kind of abuse.
The difference between narcissists behaviour and your recovery.