No Contact: The Difficult Yet Liberating Path to Freedom.
Going “no contact” strategy in toxic relationships is not a decision to be taken lightly. It requires immense courage, resilience, and a gradual recognition of one’s self-worth. No contact is an intentional and deliberate choice to completely disconnect from the toxicity of certain individuals, typically narcissists or abusive partners, who drain one’s emotional and mental well-being. This article will explore the concept of no contact, the challenges associated with it, and ways to remain resolute in one’s decision when faced with the mind games commonly employed by narcissists.
“No contact” entails severing all communication and interaction with the toxic individual, ensuring a complete emotional and physical separation. It is a strategy employed when all other avenues for resolution, be it therapy, communication, or setting boundaries, have been futile. Often, individuals opt for no contact to preserve their own mental health and prevent further harm. While it may seem like a drastic measure, it is important to recognise that no contact is not an act of cruelty or revenge but rather an act of self-preservation and reclaiming control over one’s life.
The decision to go no contact is far from easy. It involves a journey of self-realisation, where the victim acknowledges the pattern of abuse or manipulation they have endured at the hands of the toxic individual. Often, victims grapple with feelings of guilt, self-blame, and a persistent hope that things will change. The toxic person may have manipulated them into believing they are the problem, fostering a sense of dependency and fear of abandonment. Breaking free from this cycle requires immense strength and a recognition that one’s well-being is worth fighting for.
The mind games played by narcissists when you go no contact with them can be manipulative, hurtful, and damaging. These tactics are designed to keep you hooked and under their control, even when you have made the difficult decision to cut off all contact. Understanding these mind games can help you to recognise them and protect yourself from falling back into their traps.
The first mind game narcissists often employ is announcing that they ended the relationship with you. They will ensure that their flying monkeys or enablers spread the message, portraying themselves as the victim and you as the crazy one. This can trigger your abandonment issues and lead to feelings of anger and resentment. It is important to remind yourself that their version of events is untrue and to seek support from people who believe and validate your experiences.
Another tactic employed by narcissists is opening a conversation with you by reminiscing about the good times you shared. They will try to tug at your heartstrings and make you believe that they genuinely care about you. Resist the temptation to respond, as this will only provide them with the contact they desire. They may escalate their games, claiming that they cannot live without you or pleading for another chance. This can play on your empathy and attachment, making it harder to resist engaging in a full conversation with them.
Narcissists may also use emergencies or crises to manipulate your empathy and willingness to help others. They might fake illnesses or fabricate urgent situations to guilt-trip you into breaking the no-contact rule. Remember that their actions are calculated attempts to regain control over you, and do not fall into their trap.
A particularly insidious mind game utilised by narcissists after no contact is the smear campaign. They will engage in abuse by proxy, damaging your property, smearing your name, and involving others to target you. They may even resort to legal methods to hurt you financially and emotionally. They blame you for their own mistakes and project their faults onto you. It is important to document any harassment or abuse and seek legal protection if necessary.
Moving on quickly and flaunting a new relationship is another tactic frequently employed by narcissists. This is their way of proving to themselves and others that they can make a relationship work. They will go to great lengths to flaunt their new partner, leaving you feeling inadequate and questioning your worth. Remember that their new relationship is just a facade to manipulate and control others.
Leaving behind belongings or keeping yours is also used as a means to stay connected with you. They feel entitled to come and collect their things whenever they please, or even keep your belongings as a way to maintain contact. It is important to establish boundaries and cut off all avenues of contact, including returning or retrieving belongings through a third party.
False apologies and promises of change are also common mind games employed by narcissists. They may engage in long conversations, offer to seek counselling or promise to address their issues. They prey on your empathy and desire to help others, making it tempting to give them another chance. However, it is crucial to remember that their apologies and promises are insincere and meant to manipulate you into returning to their toxic cycle.
In some cases, a narcissist may go to extreme lengths by getting involved with your new partner’s ex, particularly if you both have children. This is a tactic aimed at causing chaos, confusion, and pain. They manipulate the circumstances to play games and disrupt your life further. It is important to protect yourself and your loved ones from their destructive behaviour and seek legal intervention if necessary.
In conclusion, understanding the mind games played by narcissists after going no contact can help you to recognise and protect yourself from their manipulations. By establishing and maintaining firm boundaries, seeking support from trusted individuals, and documenting any abusive behaviour, you can break free from their control and regain your emotional well-being. Remember that you deserve love, respect, and happiness, and do not allow their mind games to hinder your journey of healing and self-growth.
To remain firm in one’s decision to break free, various strategies can be employed. Firstly, it is crucial to establish a strong support system of friends, family, or therapists who can provide emotional assistance and validation. Communicating with others who have undergone a similar journey can also provide invaluable guidance and reassurance. Secondly, setting firm boundaries is vital. Clearly outlining what is acceptable and what is not helps establish a sense of control and ensure that the toxic individual cannot encroach upon one’s emotional or physical space. Thirdly, practising self-care is essential. Engaging in activities that promote well-being and self-reflection, such as journaling, therapy, or mindfulness, can aid in healing and regaining a sense of self.
No contact is a brave and formidable choice for individuals dealing with toxicity or narcissistic abuse. It serves as an act of self-preservation, enabling victims to break free from the manipulative clutches of their abusers and reclaim control over their lives. Going no contact is challenging, often fueled by guilt and the fear of the unknown. However, the rewards outweigh the hardships, as it opens up the path to healing and self-discovery. Recognising the mind games employed by narcissists and employing strategies to stand firm on one’s decision are crucial in maintaining the boundaries necessary for personal growth. Ultimately, no contact is an empowering decision that paves the way for a brighter and healthier future.
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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.