Coming away from any relationship with a narcissist is devastating if that was your parent, a close friend, a family member or your partner.
The painful memories of the past, slowly putting the pieces together, often while the narcissist in your life is still playing some form of a game, trying to destroy you when you’re already down and trying to pick yourself back up.
A narcissist relationship can leave people with.
- Adrenaline fatigue.
- Physical illnesses.
- Trauma bonding, and so many more.
Often left feeling crazy with little or no self-esteem. Losing jobs, money, homes, your possessions, some lose their children and their sanity.
Trying to work out what actually happened and fitting the pieces of your life back together is hard enough, yet with the trauma bond, the fact they can play nice, your reactions at times from being provoked to now creating boundaries, going no contact, and putting your life back together you are left feeling as though you’re fighting for your life and no one understands. Unfortunately, far too many of us go through this in silence. You are not alone in this, people have recovered. There is help and support out there. If they were a narcissist or not, toxic people create just as much misery and mayhem in our lives. It often leaves us with more self-doubt, so here are a few things narcissistic people do in relationships.
- A narcissist will continue to change you in horrifying, unexpected ways, so if it was your parents, you might have never truly felt like you fitted in or known who you were. In a relationship, you might have felt your true self slip through your fingers. As you constantly changed to please them, this also happens with friendships as you lose your boundaries continually trying to do right by them and doing wrong by you. Most children grow up with no real sense of identity if they had narcissistic parents. If your partner was a narcissist by the time you get out, most have lost their sense of identity and feel completely broken.
- Narcissists will tell you they love you. Conditional love. Some narcissistic parent might not always be forthcoming with this. Partners will be very quick to tell you how much they love you. As they love, bomb you to earn your love, as they need to use that love against you. A narcissist “I love you.” Means “I’ll use you.”
- With parents, you trust them and look up to them for guidance and support, yet as you never really truly know where you stand with them, you grow up with little trust within yourself, not understanding what true trust in a relationship feels like. With friends and partners, they’ll earn your trust in the start, treating you better than anyone ever has. You open up to them as you want to believe the good in everyone. Once they’ve earned your trust, they’ll slowly start to manipulate you. They will then start to use all your vulnerability’s and weaknesses against you. Usually, when you’re in too deep, to simply walk away.
- Most narcissistic people will try to isolate you, friends and co-workers will use triangulate to pit you against other people. They are smearing your name to others. Or telling you things they’ve said about you, which most often they haven’t. Parents will play siblings off against each other and usually the healthy parent against you. While you’re so young, you don’t even realise it’s happening, and narcissistic partners will also try to isolate you from your support network, keeping you with them as you’ve nowhere to go and no one to turn to. A narcissist likes to divide and conquer so that everyone turns to them for the reality check.
- They trap you, be it parents, friends or partners, and they want to make you so weak that you no longer know reality and can only turn to them. They trap you by using your fears and weaknesses against you by gaslighting you. Isolating you, lying to you, then blame-shifting it all into you, so you believe you are broken, and you need them as you’re left feeling like no one else will have you. They love to bomb you at times, including some narcissistic parents. They’ll treat you so right and lift you up, just to bring you crashing back down.
- They will destroy you, your self-trust, self-love, self-worth: self-respect, self-esteem. Who you are will be taken apart bit by bit. A parent will make sure you don’t know who you are. A partner or friends will manipulate you so much you no longer know who you are. They can destroy you financially as well as physically and always emotionally.
You can move past this and rebuild who you are and create who you want to be.
For those who are incredibly toxic, no contact, parent, friend or partner.
Those who are less toxic, and it would mean cutting of other family members, limiting your time around them, giving them no reactions, understanding who they are, why they do what they do.
Ways to recover.
- Work on your self-trust, listening to your instincts and not others telling you what you should or shouldn’t be doing.
- Rebuild your confidence, start by smiling at people, then saying hello, the paying someone a compliment.
- Rebuild your boundaries. If it doesn’t feel comfortable to you, say no and mean, you know.
- Rebuild your self-love, and you are perfect as you are anything you don’t like about yourself, work to change it, make sure it’s something you don’t like and not what others have planted in your mind.
- Rebuild your self-esteem, find a vision, Create new hobbies and new routines that suit you, try new activities to see what you enjoy and who you are.
- Anxiety work in your triggers, so you can see them coming. Tell yourself, “I am safe now,” have an anchor, though. Or bring yourself back into the present moment.
- Get over that trauma bonding is like weaning yourself off a drug, get addicted to something else, something positive, painting, singing, dancing, learning, anything that fills at least three of your human needs in a positive way, contribution, growth, significance, certainty, uncertainty, love and connection. You can do this by connecting with others who been through it, helping others who’ve been through it, meeting new people along the way.
- Self-respect, again your boundaries are building them back up, learning what your own values and beliefs are.
- In moments of doubt, find one thing you are grateful for. Then as you take the baby steps, when you have a wobble, find two. The more you progress, find three.
Keep going. You’ve got this, and you are worthy.
Eight narcissistic future fakes.
Click on the links below to join Elizabeth Shaw – Life Coach on social media, for more information on Overcoming Narcissistic Abuse.