Overcoming Narcissistic Abuse, by Elizabeth Shaw – Life Coach.
People on the narcissistic personality disorder spectrum have no empathy, so they do not care for the damage they cause to those around them. They have no guilt or remorse. Most narcissistic people are extremely good at treating you better than anyone ever has, by mirroring all your likes and all your dislikes, then learning all your weaknesses to use them against you, then treating you worse than anyone ever has.
As narcissists are extremely good at mirroring others personality traits we often don’t know what we are getting into, until we are in too deep, as we slowly accept behaviour as normal over time and adjust ourselves to suit them, that we accept behaviours we should have never accepted, yet because they can play nice so well, it’s complicated to spot what you don’t know.
This is to help you understand what happened if you are out of the relationship, if you are thinking of leaving, or when getting into a new relationship what to look out for.
The games a narcissist plays with you.
1. Learning about you.
They want to know everything about you, and when you first meet them, they don’t talk about themselves they ask all about you. They want to know everything about you, unless they’ve managed to suss you out over social media and to ask your friends, they’ll sit and listen to you for hrs, this makes you feel special and valuable to them. This makes you trust them. They do this so they can like all your likes, and hate all your dislikes, to make you think you’ve met somebody who truly understands you. Find out about any insecurities or weaknesses you have to use them against you later on.
How to notice this? Keep a sharp eye contact at all time when they are asking you questions, those who counter your gaze pause for a two-way conversation and speak about themselves when asked don’t want to hide anything, those who bombard you with questions, and divert any you ask them or seem to exaggerate their answers, watch their eye movements and see if you feel comfortable with them or not. Your instincts will try to tell you something even if you’re unsure what it is.
How to disarm, ask them questions about them, try to strike up a two-way conversation.
They want everyone to know they are better than others, that they are superior most narcissistic people want to show off about any skill they have, the knowledge they know, achievements they’ve made, they feel superior to all others. They might lie about homes or cars they own. They might bombard you with information you know nothing about, so you don’t know if they are right or wrong.
How to notice. A Narcissist doesn’t like being questioned, so when you ask things like. “Wow, where did you get the money for that.” Or asking them “how do you know that.” You’ll see them either change the subject, get angry or their lies will escalate.
How to disarm. Slow down the conversation and try to make it a two-way communication. Ask questions, any words they use that you don’t understand, ask them the meaning. Manipulators hate being interrupted and hate having to explain themselves, especially if they don’t know the answer.
They overwhelm you with negativity, and they want you to be sad and scared. They do this to further their control over you, as they find it easier to control those who are afraid or anxious. They do this by manipulation methods of, silent treatments, threats, gaslighting, anger, triangulation. They might speak in a loud voice, talk over you, or show bad manners.
How to notice, this one is tricky as you’re usually in the relationship more in-depth than you should be, and like to give them the benefit of the doubt. When someone becomes overly aggressive, or harmful or twist things onto to you, when they are getting an opinion across, remain positive, add jokes if you can.
How to disarm. When dealing with this, stay calm and unaffected, ignore if you can, write down and focus on your reality. Focus on the positives. Take control back of your mind.
4. Using your insecurities against you.
They feed on your insecurities. Whatever your insecurities are a narcissistic person will smell them from miles away it seems, they learn every weakness you have, then they rip them wide open and watch you bleed out. They will use them in conversation, and they will prod and poke away at them, if one person’s fear is being cheated on they’ll flirt with others right in front of you if you’re not interested in that and wouldn’t put up with that they wouldn’t do it. If one person’s fear is being isolated, they will go all out to isolate you, if you would never accept that or don’t fear that, they wouldn’t risk doing it. If your insecurities are about, your own quality’s of being a parent, they will take you down, if you happy with your parenting skills they’ll not use it, if it’s your weight they’ll use that and so on, we all have different insecurities and a narcissist will at first use a person’s insecurities against that person, then they will try to make you insecure about other things.
How to notice, they almost look like they get a real kick out of your insecurities, most people would try to make you feel better, a manipulator will make you feel worse, they bring it up in front of others without it being directly about you, others will not know yet you will know, you’ll just not feel right, see their reactions and change in energy, your instincts are telling you they almost look pleased, good people wouldn’t be happy about your insecurities they’ed want to help you feel better within yourself.
How to disarm. Work on you, control your own thoughts, write down your insecurities then write the truth, (it’s usually a thought someone else put in your mind,) or fear of judgment, own your insecurities so no one can ever use them against you. Learn to listen to your instincts even if you’re not sure what they are telling you. Face those insecurities head-on, face the pain and deal with them, eliminating all your insecurities from your mind, no matter how hard.
5. Play the hero or the victim.
They’ll act innocent. A narcissist is always the hero or victim yet never the villain. A narcissist is a con artist, they will sell you a dream and deliver you a living nightmare. Narcissists are extremely good at manipulation, they will convince others, by deflecting, gaslighting and blame-shifting, that they are the innocent party even when you have evidence to prove otherwise.
How to notice. They might act as if they appear guilty, yet they will tell you why it wasn’t their fault or find fault in you. They might act as if they are taking responsibility, which is only ever to meet their own needs, yet they’ll not learn from it, and they will do it time and time again. They will play victim, so others tell them it was never their fault. They will use reasoning, so you excuse their behaviour. So they escape accountability.
How to disarm. Write down the facts for your reality check. Listen to your instincts. Become a private detective and investigate the truth, without letting the narcissists know. Don’t show evidence when you are alone with them, as some can be extreme in their reactions.
6. Twisting the story.
They twist all information. They will always twist words, facts and reality. They will create stories they will triangulate, and they will provoke. They will play the victim and blame others. If you’re not careful, they will manipulate you into believing their stories. The will use gaslighting with words like. “That didn’t happen.” Or “I never said that.” Or “you’re crazy.” They will use triangulation ” my friend was allowed to do it.” Or “My ex didn’t mind.” To again make you doubt yourself and feel guilty for questioning them about something.
How to notice. Look for the credibility, if your instincts are telling you something isn’t right, listen to them.
How to disarm. Again write events down to keep your reality in check, gather evidence, of triangulation, is used, try asking the other person about it in front of the narcissist.
7. Using your empathy against you.
They will put pressure on you. Manipulators will do their best to drive you crazy, to confuse you, to give you brain fog, to wear you down, so you give in. They prey on all your emotions, provoke fear and then provide you with relief, and they will put so much into your mind, they will provoke you until you can no longer contain it and you explode. Then they will blame you for your reactions.
How to notice, after an emotional outburst, when you are at your weakest, they will not support you, so it’s hard for you to make logical choices. Then they will ask you to do something for them, or give them something as your more likely to agree as you feel guilty and that you’re to blame, they will then play nice, lift you back up, to reinforce and control your mind it was all your fault, they gain control of your mind and slowly break down your boundaries.
How to disarm. Write down what they do to trigger an emotional reaction if you react to them write down what they ask for next. Learn to not react to them, learn to see what insecurities they used again, then work on finding ways to heal those insecurities so they can no longer trigger them, taking back control of your thoughts and your mind.
Narcissistic people don’t like those they can not manipulate or take control of their minds. So strengtheningq your mindset is vital, controlling your emotions, finding ways to realise them if needed healthily but never to the narcissist, until you do have control over them. Always retreat, rethink and only respond if needed. Keep taking those baby steps every day to get your life on track and guide you on new adventures without negative, toxic, narcissistic people.
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