Winter ABC 2021: Day 9
As I was writing the title for this entry, it hit me, this could have been a great post about narcotic abuse but that’s a story for another day. This post is inspired by an experience as a victim of narcissistic abuse. I have come to a realization that all the toxic relationships that we talk about are in fact, narcissistic abuse. It so common that people suffer and consider it as regular relationship problems.
Narcissistic abuse is psychological abuse by a person with a narcistic personality disorder. They are manipulative and calculative. At the initial stages of the relationship they suck you in with great charm, affection and promises of grandeur. What we usually call the honeymoon phase. They are good at hiding their narcissistic traits. When the relationship solidifies, the abuse begins to creep in, it is slow and insidious. At this point you have fallen in love and willing to jump what you think are relationship hurdles. It’s the narcissism taking full form. You are in for the worst experience of your life.
You notice a behavioral pattern that is causing problems and try to address it, but it ends as an argument. They trivialize these concerns and convince their partners that they are imagining it. They are expert gas lighters. They will belittle, demean your emotions, tell you that you’re overreacting, insecure and too sensitive. So, you start questioning your sanity and temperament. You are now the crazy girlfriend/boyfriend for voicing your concerns. It takes a toll on self-confidence. The communication is key concept doesn’t work with Narcissists because they don’t care about their partners feelings. Every time you try to resolve issues, they purposefully misunderstand you, becomes overly argumentative and derails the conversation that you forget the initial essence of the dialogue. They say things like,
“You are taking it the wrong way’’
“FINE, I am sorry although I don’t know what I am apologizing for”
They are not remorseful, lack empathy, have one valid point of view and that’s theirs. A narcissist hardly changes, people typically embark on a mission to change them in hopes of getting back to that honey moon stage that they fell in love with. The emotional and mental effort is draining because you find yourself trying to clean up their messes. Pay their debts, cover their tracks because you want to demonstrate your worth in the relationship. You even go as far as pretending that you are in a good relationship, posting pictures on Instagram with superficial captions like, “loves lives here.”
Things don’t get better, by this time your self esteem has hit rock bottom and your emotional well being depends on them. They are fully in control of your happiness but it doesn’t stop there. Narcissists need to control every aspect of their partners life. They begin to isolate you from friends and family by spreading nasty rumors about you or divulging detrimental personal secrets to anyone with a listening ear. The idea is to sabotage your reputation. They will go to your friends and family without your knowledge to badmouth you. I was with someone who went as far as creating a burner Twitter account to slander and destroy my reputation. This is how far a narcissist is willing to go. In the same breath, they play victim and paints the good guy image to everyone. They are so charming and friendly with everybody but you.
They withhold love, affection and basic human decency. They very active on social media and act single under the disguise of, “I like to keep my life private.” At this stage you are fighting for the bare minimum like a simple good morning or goodnight message. You can’t address these issues because you are afraid things will blow up and get worse. They have you walking on eggshells. Its only a matter of time before you finally realize this relationship is not worth it, so you stop trying, stop begging for attention and love. You starting distancing yourself in efforts to get over them. They quickly notice this and start being overly affectionate, loving and caring. They start telling you all the things you want to hear, make promises and act like that person that you fell in love with. Boom, they suck you back in.
That is the vicious cycle of being with a person who suffers from sociopathy. Like clock work we are back to the abuse. A narcissist will watch their partner cry without batting an eyelid. The lack of compassion is scary, nothing moves them. They will have you acting out of character, screaming at them while they calmly sit there and ignore you. They instigate, watch you unravel and walk way. Finally, you break up with them. They try that method of sucking you back in and if that doesn’t work, they start stalking you. Two months post break up they will text you something like, “I miss us.” A tactic to spark conversation so they can draw you back in.
A relationship with a narcissist barely works, they don’t change and therapy doesn’t do much. If you can relate with the above, leave while you still can because you will be stuck in that vicious cycle of psychological abuse. They never change. I promise they will never see your worth, run. The moment you start doubting yourself and feel like maybe you are a nag, leave. Love yourself enough to let go of toxic people in your life.