The narcissist will idealise you. When you meet them, they are your soulmate, your perfect match in every way. They lift you so high all your dreams are coming true, they mirror you, like all that you do, they understand you, they dislike all your dislikes. Once you’re hooked, believing you’ve met the love of your life, and life couldn’t get better.
Then they devalue you. Slowly things change, sending you into a downward spiral of despair and confusion, you think you know something yet you don’t know what, constantly questioning what you’ve done wrong? What could you do better? How could you change to get that person you met back? Then they’re back to treating you right. They just flick a switch, and relationship problems are there again. They provoke you by psychological manipulation, mental abuse through gaslighting, provoke arguments, pity plays and silent treatments, then blame-shifting it all into you, leaving you confused, continually changing, walking on eggshells, afraid to speak out, Afraid to be your true self, afraid to leave. Full of insecurities, anxiety’s, heartache, shame, guilt and pain, constantly doubting them, you, reality, and what you can do better.
As they fill up your human needs for certainty, you’re in a relationship, uncertainty as you never know where you stand with them. Love and connection, growth and contribution as you are always changing to meet their needs, always connected in your mind to them sometimes positive and sometimes negative, significance in a positive way when you’re helping them. Negative when they make you feel so insignificant. You become addicted to them, and it’s no longer the love you feel. It’s trauma bonding and addiction. Although the love-bombing phase was an illusion and lies created by the narcissist, you lived it, you experienced it, and your inner critic cannot help but think it was something you did. You did nothing, and no one deserves abuse, mental or physical.
Narcissists will give intermittent rest bites from the devaluation, as they are using you, either because you’re trying your best to please them, or they want or need something from you, so they keep you hooked by lifting you out of the water just to dunk you under again. Narcissists reward and then punish to reward and then punish to hook their targets.
Then they discard you like you meant nothing to them. Why do they do this? The word discard means to get rid of someone or something that is no longer of use to you. They throw you away in the most cruellest and calculated ways often as they have a new supply that they can use.
The discard is often done hideously. Most often, they move straight on and flaunt the new partner any way they can, giving you no closure. Any relationship breakup is painful. People who are not narcissistic can act out in hurtful ways. With narcissists, there is a pattern of behaviour from love bombing, devaluing, discard and most hoover. There often is vindictiveness throughout the relationship with a narcissist, and this most often continues after the relationship has ended. Some will cut you off completely, and some will continue to contact you and give you the beliefs you could get back together. Some play hideous games. They most often want to humiliate and destroy you after the discard, with more lies and their smear campaigns as they protect themselves to release the shame and play the victim or the hero to others, yet they never admit fault. The true victim is usually left deep in depression with anxiety and fears running deep, most often blaming themselves, while the narcissistic person swans into the sunset with your self-esteem, self-love, self-trust, life, home and belongings in tatters. They might threaten you, stalk you, intimated you any way they can, provoke you any way they can. They will use all your weaknesses and fears against you.
Narcissists discard for many reasons. The main one is they’ve usually found an easier source of supply.
- You became aware that something wasn’t right with their treatment of you or others.
- You called them out on their behaviour and started creating your boundaries and stopped pleasing them.
- You stop giving them emotional responses.
- Their games are no longer working on you, you’ve learned to respond and not react, or when they go into silent treatment, you don’t chase them. You simply leave them be.
- They drained you, they took everything from you, and you hit rock bottom, so you no longer have anything to offer them, as they don’t want to help you. They’ve taken your mental health, and your physical health drained you financially. You’re stressed and depressed with anxiety. They drain you, so there’s nothing left of you.
- They are envious of someone new, so they seek to exploit that person any way they can.
- They are bored whatever they have is never enough, and they believe they’re entitled to exploit others so they can achieve more in the shortest time possible.
How can they do this? It is a question most people ask. They simply lack the empathy to care for anyone other than themselves. Do they miss you? It is often a question I get asked. The answer is no, not in the way we miss those we cared for or care for. They might get to a point when they see you doing better, so they feel jealous or envious towards you, so they come back for the hoover to use you again. It takes an average of 7 attempts to leave an abusive relationship finally. Once you know all about NPD, most often you go. Some have doubts, is it me? And I might try one more time. Most often, that will be the last.
Many a narcissist will hoover. If they can triangulate the ex’s and new supply to get them both to please the narcissist and beg for the narcissist’s attention, there is no winner in this other than the narcissist. The best thing you can do for yourself and the new partner or ex-partner of theirs who is taking then back, is taking yourself out of the equation and leaving the partner to work it out for themselves, and they too are hooked, so they will not listen to reason from you.
When you take them back, it’s always temporarily, as most often their behaviour gets worse the more they get away with it. They never come back because they love you. It’s never about you, and it’s always to use you in any way they can.
A narcissist never wants you back. They want control back.
How do you recover?
- Grieve the loss, cry, set a time limit.
- Write out the false reality and write in the true reality. To give yourself closure, they’ll never give closure. They will only ever blame shift onto you, making you feel worse.
- Remember the bad they put you through.
- Please focus on the positives of why life will be better without them.
- Work on your anxiety triggers.
- Create new routines.
- Any doubt, tell the story as if it happened to someone you really cared about. What advice would you tell that person?
- Work on your mindset. It was not your fault, and you are lovable. You are worthy
- Work on filling your human needs up in other more positive constructive ways, things like joining support groups help you by helping others learn about the experience helps you, this fills contribution, growth, connection, if once you’ve learned it, you’re no longer interested learn something new keep growing who you want to be.
- Create new routines to full certainty.
- Try new activities and hobbies.
- Learn your standards, your belief system and your boundaries.
- Make sure you rest and take care of your needs.
- Find your sense of humour, whatever that humour is to you.
Keep going, people have got past this before you, and you can move forward onto a happier life for yourself.
Why narcissists devalue.
Calling a narcissist out on behaviour change their behaviour.
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All about the narcissist Online course.
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The narcissists counter-parenting.
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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.
Click here for Elizabeth Shaw’s Recommended reading list for more information on recovery from narcissistic abuse.
Two sides to a narcissist after no Contact.