The narcissist’s ability to idealise and then devalue their victims is a manipulative strategy that often leaves their targets in a state of despair and confusion. Initially, the narcissist presents themselves as the perfect partner, the individual with whom all your dreams can come true. They mirror your behaviours, thoughts, and preferences, making you believe that you have found your soulmate. As you become hooked on this seemingly perfect love, the narcissist devalues you.
The process of devaluation is gradual, causing you to question your own worth and constantly wonder what you have done wrong. The narcissist employs psychological manipulation, mental abuse, gaslighting, and other tactics to provoke arguments and blame-shift the issues onto you. As a result, you find yourself constantly changing and walking on eggshells, afraid to speak out or be your true self. Insecurities, anxiety, heartache, shame, guilt, and pain become constant companions as you continually doubt yourself and reality.
While the narcissist fulfils your human needs for certainty and love initially, they keep you uncertain of where you stand and use intermittent reinforcement to maintain their control. As they reward and punish you repeatedly, you become addicted to their presence, even though it is no longer love but trauma bonding and addiction. The love-bombing phase, which was built on lies and illusions, leaves you questioning your own actions, even though no one deserves to be abused.
Eventually, the narcissist discards you, treating you as if you never mattered. This act of discarding is an intentional removal of someone or something that no longer serves their purpose. They often move on quickly, flaunting their new partner in an attempt to assert their dominance and cause further pain. The narcissist’s discard is usually done cruelly, denying you any closure or resolution. They may cut you off completely or continue to contact you, leading you to believe that reconciliation is possible. Some narcissists engage in hideous games, seeking to humiliate and destroy you further through lies and smear campaigns.
After the discard, the narcissist may exhibit vindictive behaviour, manifesting in threats, stalking, and intimidation. They use your weaknesses and fears against you with the aim of protecting themselves and exerting control. The true victim is left in a state of deep depression, anxiety, and self-blame, and life shattered. The narcissists actions during and beyond the relationship speak to their inability to take responsibility for their actions and their relentless pursuit of power and control.
The phenomenon of narcissistic discard is an intricate and often devastating aspect of dealing with individuals who possess narcissistic traits or a Narcissistic Personality Disorder. The abrupt termination of a relationship or connection with a narcissist is often devastating for the victim and can occur for various reasons. One of the primary drivers behind a narcissist’s decision to discard someone is their discovery of an easier source of supply.
One crucial trigger for narcissistic discard is when the victim becomes aware that something is amiss with the narcissist’s treatment of them or others. It could be a realisation of the manipulative tactics, emotional abuse, or lack of empathy consistently demonstrated by the narcissist. This newfound awareness empowers the victim to call out the narcissist’s behaviour and establish personal boundaries, no longer willing to appease or tolerate their toxic actions.
Furthermore, as the victim learns to prioritise their emotional well-being and stops providing the desired emotional responses, the narcissist’s games cease to be effective. By responding instead of reacting, the victim gains control over their own emotions, rendering the narcissist’s attempts at manipulation futile. In the case of silent treatment, a classic narcissistic tactic, the victim learns not to chase after the narcissist’s attention and simply lets them be.
A fundamental reason for narcissistic discard is the literal depletion of the victim by the narcissist. In every possible aspect, the victim is drained mentally, physically, and financially. The narcissist often takes advantage of the victim’s vulnerability, leaving them entirely stripped of resources and at rock bottom. At this point, the victim has nothing left to offer the narcissist, as their mental and physical health have been severely compromised. The narcissist, devoid of any desire to help or support the victim, promptly discards them.
Another reason for narcissistic discard lies in the narcissist’s envy of a new potential target or source of supply. Narcissists are perpetually unsatisfied and continuously seek to exploit others for personal gain. When they come across someone new who embodies qualities or achievements they covet, they will stop at nothing to exploit and manipulate that person. This often results in the narcissist discarding their previous connection in favour of this newfound opportunity, as they believe it will bring them more success and satisfaction in the shortest possible time.
Moreover, narcissistic discard can also stem from a deep-seated boredom within the narcissist. They are in a perpetual state of restlessness, never satisfied with what they have. This constant craving for more leads them to believe that exploiting others is their entitlement, a means to achieve their insatiable desires swiftly. When they become bored with their current supply, they seek out new victims to exploit, discarding the previous ones without a second thought.
The reasons behind a narcissist’s decision to discard someone are multifaceted. From the satisfaction of finding an easier source of supply to envy, boredom, and the complete depletion of the victim, various factors contribute to this callous act. Understanding these reasons can serve as a crucial step towards healing and preventing further harm inflicted by narcissistic individuals.
How can narcissists repeatedly come back into our lives? This is a question commonly pondered by those who have dealt with the manipulative tactics of narcissistic individuals. The answer lies in their lack of empathy and an insatiable need for control. When asked if they miss you, the response is a resounding no, as they are incapable of experiencing genuine emotions or caring for others.
However, there may be instances when a narcissist perceives that you are doing better without them, which triggers feelings of envy or jealousy. In such cases, they are likely to make a return, seeking to exploit you once again. Leaving an abusive relationship can be an arduous task, often requiring an average of seven attempts before successfully breaking free. Yet, once you become aware of their narcissistic personality disorder (NPD), most individuals choose to walk away for good.
The narcissist’s behaviour often involves hoovering, a tactic in which they attempt to manipulate both their ex-partner and their new supply or potential partner. By creating a triangular dynamic, they aim to gain attention and exert control over both individuals. However, it is crucial to remove yourself from this equation, as engaging in their manipulative games only perpetuates their power. The best course of action is to allow the narcissist’s partners to independently discern the truth about their behavior and make their own decisions.
Should you entertain the idea of taking a narcissist back, understand that this move will only be temporary. In fact, their behaviour is likely to escalate as they realise they can get away with more. It is vital to recognise that a narcissist never returns because they genuinely love or care for you. Their motive is solely rooted in their insatiable hunger for control.
Narcissists can repeatedly worm their way back into our lives due to their manipulative tactics and desire for control. However, once we become knowledgeable about NPD, it becomes easier to break free from their influence. Remember, taking yourself out of the equation and allowing others to see the truth about the narcissist’s behaviour is the best way to protect yourself and those involved. It is essential to remember that a narcissist’s return is never about love, but rather a craving for dominance and power.
Remember the final discard comes from you.
How Do You Recover?
Recovery from a painful experience is a complex and unique journey, one that requires patience, self-reflection, and a commitment to personal growth. Whether it is the end of a relationship, the loss of a loved one, or any other form of emotional trauma, the process of recovery can seem overwhelming at times. However, by following some key steps, you can find solace, healing, and a renewed sense of purpose.
First and foremost, it is crucial to allow yourself to grieve the loss. Suppressing emotions or pretending that the pain doesn’t exist will only prolong the healing process. Cry if you need to. Let the sorrow wash over you, and give yourself permission to feel the magnitude of your loss. By acknowledging and processing your emotions, you begin to make space for healing to occur.
Next, consider setting a time limit for your grief. While it may seem counterintuitive, imposing a deadline on your sorrow can be a powerful way to set boundaries and prevent it from consuming your entire life. This time limit should be reasonable, allowing for the necessary healing while also providing a framework for moving forward.
To facilitate closure, it can be helpful to write down the false reality you may have been living in during the relationship or throughout the traumatic experience. By confronting the truth and accepting the realities of the situation, you can gain a sense of clarity and closure that the other person may never provide. Avoid falling into the trap of blaming yourself; the responsibility lies with them, not you. Remind yourself of the pain they caused you, as this can strengthen your resolve to move on.
While recovering, it is important to focus on the positives of life without the person or situation that caused you pain. Reflect on the freedom and opportunities for growth that now lie before you. By shifting your mindset towards a positive outlook, you can fuel your motivation to create a better future for yourself.
Anxiety triggers can impede healing, so identifying and working on them is vital. Explore coping mechanisms that help alleviate anxiety, such as meditation, deep breathing exercises, or seeking professional help. Over time, as you develop healthier ways of managing stress, you will find yourself better equipped to handle triggers.
Establishing new routines can offer a sense of stability and certainty during uncertain times. Embrace activities and hobbies that bring you joy and allow you to rediscover yourself. By engaging in novel experiences, you open yourself up to personal growth and new possibilities.
It can be beneficial to view your experience from an outside perspective. Imagine if it happened to someone you deeply cared about. What advice would you give them? By shifting the focus away from yourself, you can gain invaluable insights and provide yourself with the guidance and support needed for recovery.
Focus on your mindset. Recognise that the situation was not your fault and that you are lovable and worthy. Work on affirming positive beliefs about yourself, challenging any negative self-perceptions that may have stemmed from the traumatic experience.
Another essential step in the recovery process is seeking fulfilment in other areas of your life. Joining support groups or engaging in activities that contribute to the well-being of others can give you a sense of purpose and connection. As you learn and grow from these experiences, you’ll be inspired to continue broadening your horizons and evolving into the person you want to be.
Rest and self-care are integral to recovery. Understand your physical and emotional needs and prioritise them. Nurture yourself with kindness and compassion, allowing your body and mind to heal.
Discover your sense of humour. Laughing, even in the midst of pain, can be a powerful tool for healing. Find what makes you laugh, whether it’s witty banter, slapstick comedy, or anything that brings even a glimmer of joy.
Lastly, keep moving forward. Remember that countless others have overcome similar challenges, and you, too, can find your way to a happier life. Draw inspiration from their stories and let their resilience motivate you to persevere. Embrace the journey of recovery, for within it lies the opportunity to not only heal but to thrive.
In conclusion, recovering from emotional trauma necessitates patience, self-reflection, and a commitment to personal growth. By allowing yourself to grieve, setting boundaries, and shifting your mindset, you can navigate the healing process with grace and resilience. Focus on filling your life with positive and constructive experiences, fortify your beliefs and boundaries, and practice self-care. Remember, recovery is a journey, and with time and determination, you will emerge stronger, wiser, and ready to embrace a brighter 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.