Wednesday, January 28, 2009

How To Live With A Narcissist

The only advice I have found so far that makes sense. It is simple, direct, and challenges and empowers the subject of the offense- YOU. ~Invicta 11/04

5 Tips On How To Live With A Narcissist

By Kathleen Brizendine, M.A.

A narcissist's emotional growth stops maturing at the age of 2 1/2 or 3 years of age. This may be due to a trauma, which was more than their young psyche could withstand. Emotional growth was shut down, while intellectual and physical growth continued into adulthood.

Those who live with a narcissist usually begin to dance to the whimsical tune of a toddler in an adult body. This can be overwhelming and sometimes cripples family members emotionally until they understand the narcissist's game plan.

Children of narcissists, often choose a narcissist for a mate. At first, it may feel cozy and homelike to be manipulated by a handsome, charming, tyrannical lover, along with making them feel crazy and hurt. When a person becomes aware they have married a narcissist, they have several options. If they choose to remain married to and emotionally vulnerable to a narcissist, several basic rules are required to nurture equilibrium and mental/emotional health.

* SUPPORT SYSTEM: Develop a support system of 3 or more healthy adults who are in no way charmed by narcissistic behavior. They may have narcissistic family members of their own, but they must distinguish between genuine and manipulative behavior styles. Every week, confidentially and respectfully share healthy adult viewpoints among support system members to counterbalance those of loved ones who function emotionally at the level of a toddler.

* PERSONAL BOUNDARIES: Become aware of personal limits, needs, desires, irritants, and aspirations. State these clearly to the narcissist. Actively promote self-care in all interactions with the narcissist. Don't do anything that makes you feel uncomfortable just because the narcissist tries to get you to do it. Only do things you feel comfortable doing. Let the narcissist deal with his or her own disappointment when this happens. Return to active interaction with the narcissist only after the manipulative behavior stops. Trust your own judgment.

* LIST 3 BEHAVIORS NEITHER PERSON WILL TOLERATE: When the list has been agreed upon, make a sign and put it up where you both can see it. When either person breaks a rule, the other partner must point it out in private, calmly and with respectfully chosen words. The partner who acted out must clearly apologize and state clearly the plan they have in place for making certain this does not become a pattern in the future. If one partner ignores the agreement more than three times in any three month period, the relationship should be renegotiated with a trained professional present.

* WIN-WIN VS. NO-WIN: Another term for "no-win" behavior is "crazy-making". Narcissists may ask their loved ones to perform mutually exclusive tasks or behaviors simultaneously. They may then become angry when their demands are not met. Create a simple format for developing win-win solutions and apply this repeatedly as needed. At some point, the narcissist will become bored with crazy-making tactics and abandon them for another way to get his or her way. Consult Conflict-Resolution websites for basic win-win rules.

* TOOLS FOR MANAGING EMOTIONAL OUTBURSTS: Neither partner should be allowed to treat the other with disrespect. This includes words, tone, body-language, and innuendo. Everyone needs to let off steam. If someone needs to vent feelings, that person must take responsibility for those feelings, not blaming someone else for "making" him or her feel it. Any person who is being treated with disrespect, according to his or her own perception, has the right to take time alone, or with other friends until the disrespectful behavior ends. Accept the required apology gracefully and move on.

http://www.nightingalecenter.com/archive/narcissist.html

75 comments:

Anonymous said...

Thanks for this.

Anonymous said...

I am so relieved to find information on this topic that actually makes sense. Thank you.

Anonymous said...

My daughter-in-law has been diagnosed with histionic personality disorder. It seems that narcissism traits are also present. Thank you for the strategies.

Anonymous said...

My daughter-in-law has been diagnosed with histionic personality disorder. It seems that narcissism traits are also present. Thank you for the strategies.

Mel said...

is anyone still on this? I am so glad to have found this Blog....need support due to long term living with a N. Counsellors can't relate to what it's been like, only after learning about this personailty defect have I come to relaize what I've been dealing with. I felt crazy before, couldn't explain the shit I dealt with in this relationship, now it makes sense to me and I know when to detach and oull away (but it still hurts!). Glad to be here :)

Anonymous said...

Living with one too. It is really exhausting emotionally. To do and to be without being affected by the negative comments thrown at me is REALLY difficult. I can't imagine living without him, but this living isn't good. Bring a child in the equation, it only makes matters worse. The constant bickering, the recurrent guilt is just too much at times. I used to work, and then home life was bad, I could never do anything right. Couldn't keep the house clean enough, couldn't cook enough, couldn't dress right and I was portrayed as a spend thrift as I used to buy lunch at work. So, I quit. I figured, if work makes it worse for family, why work for the few more thousand dollars. What was my peace worth? Must be more than money. Things didn't improve in the homefront still. I'm still not a good enough house keeper. Not a good wife and the constant gloominess is wearing me out. Once in a blue moon when he feels lonely, he'll smile act sweet and I'll melt and a couple of days later, back to square one. His dreams are all crashed, I'm a bad parent and because of me he is not able to succeed in his life and career. He doesn't raise a hand at me, he doesn't call me names, he just says that he's lost and fed up in life and all his dreams are crushed. I try to put on a brave face, struggle to understand him. I can't. I can't let go of him either. I tried to suggest counselling and that didn't sit well with him. He is not a bad guy, he is a nice man. He is a good father. I do need a support group. His parents and siblings are extremely protective of him and I was put down a lot of times by them I finally stood up for myself, now I'm the bad guy. They don't talk to me, I don't care about that, he doesn't seem to mind it either. I just want him to be happy for his own sake. It is a lonely place he is in, I want to help and motivate him. Lead a friendly life if not a romantic one atleast. Divorce is definitely out of question. I'd never want to put my child through that. So, this is my life - or so called life.
Just an example of the sheer amount of crazy guilt I carry;
I paint and a gallery was interested in hosting a few of my pics. I gave it to them. I told him about it, he didn't mind. Another one showed interest and took a few of my paintings, all of a sudden, he sees my act as trying to sell the pics for money because he can't make enough. ???!!! He doesn't even care about my works, doesn't understand it. But wants to censor what I should not paint and how I should not display. He says he is emotionally attached to them. I tried to explain him that its the recognition that matters and not the money. And now I'm supposedly the woman who is too independent and arrogant asking her husband to mind his business and shut his mouth(?!).

Anonymous said...

I can really identify with the Anonymous post from Mar 20, 2012..... Everything is always my fault all the time. He had a very traumatic childhood, father was verbally, mentally and physically abusive. His brother has what I think of as Narcissist "Rages" where if he isn't paid the proper or what he deems proper respect he goes into a rage at the person. He did it to me the last two times I have seen him and I do not speak to him anymore, will not go around if I think he will be there. If that sibling calls, I won't answer the phone, I let the answering machine pick it up. Refusing to acknowledge by "fighting" with them seems to be the best thing. They need constant stimulation and like a child, bad attention is better than no attention at all.... I've just realized what was causing this, guess I'm a slow learner, we've been together 30 years. All this time I've been told (and believed) it was me, and that there was something wrong with me. He's told me things like nobody else would have you...... I guess as the old saying goes, misery loves company... it nice to know you're not alone. I definitely will come back to this spot - support from someone who will not "take sides" and just a friendly voice from someone who loves you also helps. Find/Make your local support group.

Anonymous said...

I also wanted to respond to the post on March 20th...I am so right there with you...I nearly cried reading your words, because it is like we live the same life. I really thought my husband was just a really "strong personality" it wasn't until a few days ago that I read what narcissism is and I COULDN'T BELIEVE there was a actually a name of what I have been going through all these years!!! My husband and I are the classic text book example of what a narcissist and co-dependant couple look like NOBODY knows the secret life of torment I live in and I constantly try to mask it to EVERYONE and even myself by saying it's not that bad...but, deep down in my heart I know we are a toxic and dysfunctional and now my kids are getting to the age where they can see it and it just breaks my heart! I have even told him that sometimes I wish he would just hit me so that I would KNOW a line has been crossed, so I wouldn't hesitate to leave. And then there are times I wish HE would leave so that my kids wouldn't think it was me that was the "bad guy." He rarely calls me names, and is never physical with me, but he controls me with his BLACK MOODS, ANGER, RAGES, SILENT TREATMENTS, EXTREME JEALOUSY, and OVER PROTECTIVENESS, and constant MOOD SWINGS!!! And it doesn't matter how much I cry or try to explain from my perspective...he NEVER sees where I am comming from! I can usually expect a blow up every 3 days...and I never know what will set him off. It can be as little as not asking him if he would like something to drink when I am getting myself something, or a complete meltdown if I am too tired to have sex. His jealousy is my biggest heartache. I can't have ANY relationships with the opposite sex and if he thinks I have looked in a man's direction (even if they are just crossing the street) then it turns into world war 3!!! Pretty much EVERY outing as a family ends up with me in tears after he has accused me of "looking at someone." He gets me so upset by these crazy accusations that I once even threatened to jump out of the van while he was driving and my kids were in the back (I can't even believe it myself). And then I blame myself as the one who has the problem and is the over emotional one.As I am writing this I can't even believe I stay with him, but the fact is I do care about him and his well-being, and the GOOD times are REALLY GOOD, and he can actually be the most romantic man in the world,funny, charming, the poems he writes, the compliments he gives me, the loving and amazing father that he is, and the dreams he has for us suck me back into the madness everytime. He was my first love...my dream guy. I know I have my own issues and I am not perfect(though I try to be and try to make it look to the outside world that we are the perfect family), and I am enabaling him to act the way he does when I go along with his crazy ways...like giving him a "rundown" of every male I talk to during the day, Or I will look down at my feet whenever we are out in public. I give up, I am so tired of the constant fighting and my appologizing when I know I am not in the wrong, and his black moods. I would leave in a second if we didn't have kids. But I also feel so sorry for him, it will break him to his very core if I left....he may even become suicidal. We have been to a Christian counselor, but he just wanted to give us happy little scripture verses and send us on our way...never understanding that we were drowning in turmoil and needed serious and immediate intervention...rules, boundaries, guidelines of how to even make it in the car ride back home....hopeless! So thank you for your post and know that I too feel your pain. I live it everyday. I don't know if I can keep up this charrade (sp?) much longer. Knowing I am not alone really helps...I fantasize all the time about just being a normal couple, I so want that most of all for my kids.

Anonymous said...

I saw an interview with Christy Brinkley today and she talked about her X husband and this condition. I got on my computer and just read and read on this. As my life and what I go through on a daily basis was explained to me, I just kept crying. Mostly because I felt like I was reading all about exactly what I live! It was scarey yet amazingly shocking! WOW!!! This describes my husband and what I go through all day! I thought I was all alone with this!...sometimes I feel like its all my fault. I even say to him:I'll try to be better"...gosh! Thank you for this support page!

Anonymous said...

I feel some relief from reading more about this condition and everyone's posts. I am separated from my husband who I believe has this condition. After years of torment and instability with him, he ended up pushing the envelope further with me and abused prescription pills and later crystal meth. My therapist has cautioned me about the slim chance of his ever changing. He is in recovery, but makes the same choices that create stress in his life in the first place. He constantly lies to me, has a girlfriend he lives with and swears up and down she is a friend. We have a 3 year old who needs my attention more than my soon to be ex. Staying with him I believe would do more harm than good for my son.

Anonymous said...

I felt like reading my own life written down here from march 20 th post and the rest. I had a very difficult life with my boyfriend/ husband for the last 12 years and still going through a hell right this moment. I had a relationship with him because I heard that he had a abusive mom with a neglectful dad.. I felt like he just needed my love which I was ready to give him.. We were so good together for first couple years. We had our first child and I had a very rough time then and we were separated for six months when my first son was 3. My family members got into his manipulation with his sympathy seeking behavior and we got reunited. He was gambling behind my back and I did not know for many years. I never suspected him gambling until he was my first one turned 4. He is from gambling family Or community. Therefore gamble is not seen as bad as what I thought. With some help of family and feiend's help he stopped gambling for 3 years and we were fine until he went back to gambling again. I felt like he was not capable of loving anyone.. His heart has this black hole that prevents him from loving anyone except himself but then there are times that he has a very low self esteem. He "loves" being around other people, party, likes to please others.. Very generous to others if there is some benefit for himself. I have seen him play mind game wiith other people. Very very manipulative, lying is his norm ( calls himself very honest guy). Little things makes him angry, sometimes anything gets him mad but there are times people step on his head and nothing happens. Spends money excessively, gives anyone money or things but won't provide me with money at home for the kids. He doesn't spend any money on me or the kids but I hear many people saying how generous he is. I feel like he tries to buy attention or whatever. Tips his dentist.. Takes his workers for dinner, lunch so on. But no time for me and his children. When we talk about his children, he talks about himself. He loves the children but he makes tome to see them only when he needs them or misses them or when he is bored with the rest of the world. If I knew any kind of by product of childhood abuse and narcissim I would have been very careful to be around him.. Too late nowi have two children and I do notwant to divorce but will have to live with a lot of knowledge about this disease and will see what happens next.. Big hugs to you all who is living a similar lives like mine. Have compassion to all..

Anonymous said...

I feel the same although no longer crazy and frustrated just sad. this is my life every time that i get close to enjoying anything or achieving anything he staarts again. this week it was because i stopped the car 30 meters short of where he wanted to get out. yesterday was because i started taling when he wanted to speak. i am not psycic i dont know if he wants to speak. i feel so sad and i want out, but he now behaves the same way toward my daughter and if she was alone with him half the time i think it would destroy her. i am so tired of being sad.

Anonymous said...

Its such a devestating position as a mother myself reading these posts looking for support because I too have a child with a narcissist. Its one thing for a person to ACT or portray themself as crazy but terrifying when you realize they really are!!! My sons father is currently doing 3~5yrs found out during pregnancy did a background check hes done 10 yrs before hand aliases and soo many guilty pleas for drug charges. His parents were abusive neglectful siblings have messed up heads too. Every family has issues even mine but I have a very big heart, loving caring nurturing and have always despised abusers cruelty and down right evil people. I feel stuck bc I was brainwashed and always have to remind myself to take those blinders off love is respect dont care how fucked up your life was. I was a rape victem years ago so trusting men is a big issue im used to running and hiding where im paronoid fearing for the worst. But I cant run now im a mother I will die to protect my son from the things I have seen, heard and now know about his father. I have seen his crazyness and the laughter where he tourmented me chasing me down isolating me from family n friends went through hell when I was pregnant now he is gone temporarily. I felt he was genuinely sorry n apologetic my son needs a father I basically fell in love with a fake ass dude. Drugs, money, n material things n himself always comes before his son (took me out of equation) legally im teriffied he will try or get some kind of custody/visitation. Biggest worry is him hurting my son (fear of unknown) bc narcissists are unpredictable! its a mothers undying love that makes me paronoid crazy trying to prevent what may or may not happen. Its mentally draining trying to be 100 steps ahead who cares about me my son is my LIFE. I want to get sole full custody now but I feel like the court systems dont really have the time to see what goes on behind closed doors thats why theyre so stuck on whats in the best interest of the child. I know they dont like parents bashing eachother, would never want my child in that scary enviroment anyway seeing his parents fighting, scared, or blaming himself. But they see soo much brainwashing from convicts that its hard to tell a fake person from a genuine. My sons father is now at almost 15 yrs in prison so that narcissist mentality is NORMAL in there! Hes a natural con artist his whole life. I dont want my son to be harmed physically, mentally or emotionally and he knows thats how he can get to me. Then like I said to him when he w got locked up and cried to me for days during calls and visits begging me to take the baby and leave hes not normal, he admitted he abuses everything in his life apologized for hurting me, abandoning us all the things I needed to hear. Him not in denial, a breakthrough heres the real guy not mr tough guy, I saw progress I did love him (the nice side) bc we deal with dr jekyl mr hyde and this personality is the guy I 1st met and fell in love with before the verbal and emotional abuser. I dont have time to teach him how to be a father let alone a man it SHOULD be common sense. I cannot fix him, I dont have a guy out there as a replacement, I seen this all the time never thought I would be here myself so I prayed my sons not a mistake so many said abortion I said no Im totally against murder theres always adoption ppl who cannot have kids would take them. Yet I dont have a story lined up for when my son asks who his dad is these are sooo many HARD decisions leaving you confused as to what direction to take and my sons interest has always been first. ANY MAN WHO JEOPARDIZES HIS FAMILY IN THE END WILL BE SAD AND LONELY AND A FOOL AND MAY HE CHOKE ON HIS ARROGANCE!

Anonymous said...

Women are leaving men of this N-ilk in droves. I read the posts and they mostly suggest that ladies, your mind is a terrible thing to waste and for the sake of "good" dump that yucky guy along with the delusional infatuation.
Exit the cave.

Anonymous said...

Hi - I very much relate to many of the comments here, have a narcissiistic husband who didn't show his true traits until we were married... After a difficult and harrowing first couple of years where I nearly forgot who I was by trying to meet his demands, and make things better to avoid the next mood swing......l have found a relatively comfortable spot.

He hasn't changed his ways at all but I seriously changed my attitude and want to share with you some tips.
1. My mantra became " I am Teflon and his sh!t doesn't stick" so now when there are derogatory comments or mood swings I don't let it affect me emotionally. I let him live in his own dark mood and go about my day normally.
2. I have a chosen few that I can confide in outside the relationship and use as a sounding board when topics become contentious between my hubby and I.
3. I set firm boundaries, this one didn't come easy and I'm still getting used to putting it in place but am not afraid to tell him three times over the same thing (eg I'd really like to go to the gym this Wed evening).

I've learnt that this is his issue and I am now more true to myself. This has proved effective, I won't say it's a cure to the situation but certainly a more comfortable position.

Anonymous said...

As soon as I can afford to move out from this narcissism I am. It's painful and hurtful. On top of that he is a male shovenist. Lord please help

Anonymous said...

I have been married for almost 2 hrs. Dated for about 3 years. In the beginning it was great, then about 1 year into it things changes. He always thinks I'm talking about him to my friends. I stop calling them, we work together I have to make sure that I always careful about what I say. He always buying everything for himself, always we have to have people with us. He always talks about himself and what he does. He never ask me about myself or my needs. We never discuss our future, doesn't tell me he loves me unless he is getting something new. Loves to spend money on everyone, but me. I don't even have a wedding band, but we his 4 cars, plus he just took a vacation by his self. Always telling me that I'm crazy, jealous, talk bad about him. He is always talking bad about everyone. He tells me that I don't clean the house good enough, he says he doesn't what me to help because I could never do anything right. But he can't even put his dishes in the sink, or pick up his clothes, or cook dinner for me. I have spent all my savings on him. He is still buying things everyday. He wont talk to me for days it's like my punishment for talking to someone. Can someone help me. He says I tell people things about him so people can say poor poor Chrissy. Is it me, I'm beginning to think I'm crazy.

Anonymous said...

Oh Crissy, please get out of this life-sucking "relationship"!!! He has destroyed your self-esteem and alienated you from people who can point out how crazy bad this situation really is. His manipulative, self-serving, uncaring, selfishness has pulled you into a pit of despair and made you forget what a caring, giving, kind person you really are. Get out and cut all contact with this delusional Psychopathic Narcissistic misogynist and surround yourself with supportive people. Find yourself and attend to your wants and needs and heal your sense of Self--physically, mentally, emotionally, and spiritually. Work on re-finding and pursuing your goals and meaningful work and take a relationship hiatus until you develop clear boundaries and release codependent tendencies. Being clear about who you are and where you're going is so important in healing the deep wounds to your psyche, identity, personality, and sense of Self. Do it now! I know because I was with one of these jerks for 14 years and felt like I had PTSS and ADD from the experience. Still trying to find my True North after all the betrayal and treachery. Good luck to you!

Anonymous said...

I have only been in my relationship 5 years (we are married). I thought I was going completely mad at one stage and had a break down. These blame you for their life,they won't take any responsibility for anything, and generally treat you with disrespect, but then on the otherhand can be the 'perfect' person..??? We split for a while and he completely slandered me to everyone, and people actually thought I was the ABUSER!! I was so outraged and still am by this. He became a christian and has got somewhat better, but he still has his 'moments'. He doesn't trust me at all, yet he is the one who previously whored around (although denies this venhemently). whilst we were staying with his son for a while he kept making comments about mistrusting us together, which is hienous!! I deal with him now like this - When he starts accusing or abusing I just say 'i'm not putting up with this behaviour' and go to bed or for a walk. I used to shout, scream and retaliate, but now I don't really care and just walk away leaving him to it. I simply take the 'good times' and walk away from the bad. I have set myself boundaries and learnt, when he says something ridiculous to pick my moment and say for example..'we need to leave here as what you are inferring is making me uncomfortable' and if he won't leave I will.. believe me it works because they know that you will ruin their night by leaving, (they will get upset when you stand up for yourself) but I won't budge. I know that I am a solid 'good' person who knows right from wrong. He is the one who is ill and I either ignore his bad behaviour (to me) and carry on like everything is fine with my life. I sometimes ask 'why are you behaving this way' to make him reflect on his behaviour which sometimes does or doesn't work!? I have somehow learned to work the bad stuff he says into a consequence for him, e.g. i will 'sit' on something he has previously accused me of or whatever and wait for an appropriate conversation to occur where I can bring it up, and will just say ' oh no i'm not doing that because of what you said to me the other day', therefore he does it alone (which they aren't that keen on but pretend they are indifferent), or neither of you go. Therefore, he has learnt that being a bully or abusive has consequences which he won't like. I am still at the very early stages in this and have done a lot of reading and research, but I feel strong and am going with my gut instincts, and of course as a christian myself i pray for guidance A LOT!!

Anonymous said...

My God, all the above comments on Narcissistic spouses, validates and confirms what I have dealt with for thirty years in my marriage. I had no clue thirty years about this condition and married a man who I thought really loved me but nine months into the marriage, I have birth to a son with Sickle cell anemia disease and had to depend on him for the emotional support in dealing with a chronically ill child. I cannot begin to describe the roller coaster ride, this marriage has been through. Having children with THESE kind of men feels like entrapment and death sentence. Everything is fine when things are going well with them, but when it turns bad for them, you have hell to paid. We need to sound the alarm on these men do they do not DESTROY other people's lives. The bible says, the devils comes to steal, kill and destroy. They are sick and damaged human beings who SEEM not to be able to give nor receive true love, just hate and selfish means to survive. They represent him well.

Anonymous said...

I, too, have survived the horror of a long term (33-year) relationship with a narcissist. I finally "got out" six months ago. I decided to take back my personal power and opted for living MY life. His constant verbal abuse escalated over the years to the breaking point. He did try killing me, literally, but I was spared. I decided to no longer rely on luck for change. I listened to my inner voice and found God's grace. I had learned about NPD four years prior when I first discovered his cheating. I always thought there was something wrong with him. My life with him was a rollercoaster of intense passion and pain. I lost out on so many great life experiences to be his devotee. He had many addictions throughout the years. He always remained an alcoholic. I did leave him many times over the years but took him back each time. We had a child together, after five years, I thought it better for her to have a father than none. I thought this is what you do in committed relationships. I have read and understand now about Stockholm syndrome, verbal abuse, Narcissistic Victim Syndrome, C-PTSD. Some days, when I look back, I think he is the devil incarnate, other days I think MY reality is perhaps false (I lived in his fantasy for so long) and that I am hopeless. This is what happens when you allow yourself to stay for too long. You no longer know who you are, what is real. This I do know in my heart and soul- you must trust yourself- you are NOT the problem. I lost my self-esteem, my personal power and my identity. I have to get past the blame and the guilt. I still grieve the loss. There was a time before I met him in my early 20's when I was confident, strong, creative and beautiful. I had hope to grow and find love and live a full, happy life. I was targeted by this man. I was naive. Since that fateful day, I have lived in chaos, trying to love him, trying to understand him, trying to "fix" him, trying to make him love me as I thought he once did. He said in our last conversation that he told people he was single. So I see now this is what IS REAL: We had no relationship, he never loved me, it was false. Most of my life, all of my adult life, I have lived a fantasy. I still have no closure from him. I did truly love him but- I changed to become what he wanted. I lived a lie in a one-sided relationship, and I wasted my youth and spent my life without love or happiness. Depression became my only companion. In the end, when I almost gave him my ALL, I prayed everyday for God's help. I turned away from the monster and looked squarely at myself. He didn't even value what I gave him. He used our daughter. It took over 3 years for me to say I AM DONE and NO MORE! It took a brush with death. After that event, he became someone I didn't know at all. He showed a side to me that was frightening. For six more months he became more abusive and my plan for escape was getting narrower. I gathered courage, told the last person who could support what was happening and I took back my power. I threw him out. Afterwards, I suffered more trauma- I lost my home, my job, my financial security and relationships with other loved ones because of this madness and my PTSD. I didn’t think it would hit me that hard but I am so thankful that I am free from the tyranny now. I AM a strong person and I will continue to fight! I am protecting myself now. Everyday I ask God for strength, clarity, guidance and courage. It has been hard to ask others for help. Those who haven't gone through this could never understand. Of course, the narcissist had his own plan in place so that when the shit hit, he came out smelling of roses. He sucked me dry. I hope no one else is harmed by him but not likely. Find support and give in to the Truth. The abusers power WILL kill you. They are stronger. You must turn your back on evil and walk away. For me, the game is over, I lost, but I'm OK. I can rebuild. I didn’t give up on myself and I am still kicking. Peace. -T

Anonymous said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Admin said...

July 1, 2012 4:16 PM
Anonymous said...

more from T.
The thing is, I read other's plight regarding their experience with a narcissist and I want to cry or scream. Don't allow your narcissist the power over you! Make sure you keep a support group close (I allowed my narcissist to isolate me). Make sure you know your values, stand by them and listen to YOUR needs and NEVER think YOU can help this person get well or change. Honor yourself as you do would do to others. Recognize when you have lost the battle before it kills you. Everyone deserves to be treated kindly and with respect- INCLUDING you. No one is an island, we do need each other to help live a full meaningful life- and that does include YOU. Surround yourself with people who will lift you up, who respect you and are kind. They do exist. Your narcissist is taking care of himself/herself and does not feel the same as you. They do not "love" anyone. They are sick. When you are gone they will forget you easily, they live in a different reality that revolves around their happiness only. How will you feel when they discard you? What state of mind or space will you be in? I am barely surviving day by day, but slowly returning to health and I am forever thankful that God gave me another chance for life. I implore you if you are considering going back to the abuse, don’t be like me and waste all your years. I pray I will continue to grow and be happy and find real love. For now, I can share life’s goodness and share my experience for healing with others. God bless you all. Peace. -T.

(Edited by admin to remove link.)

Anonymous said...

I've been looking for an online counselor that I could possibly see once a month or so, but continue discussions online. Writing is a release to me. This site, however, seems to be a welcomed alternative. I bookmarked June 4's comments to remind me what I have been up against all these many years. It's not just me that's crazy after all. No one has mentioned, so far, that the narcissist needs lovers.... not just a wife. Anyone else had this problem? ntedurt 764

Anonymous said...

What is a link? J

Anonymous said...

Does anyone lice with a narcissist who blames everything on PMS?

Anonymous said...

I think that my husband is suffering from narcissist traits. He is always blaming other people for any problems both in marriage and business and reacts extremely defensivly when criticised. This has of late been made worse by the fact that we run a business together which is going through tough times which has put a further strain on our marriage .
He is often extremely rude to me personally and doesnt seem to understand how this makes me feel .

He is often telling me that he has no respect for me and that am a bad mother on and on .

Whenever someone complains about the way the business is run he tends to somehow take it out on me and/or the client who is always at fault. He has lost some clients by aggressivly countering their complaints .

He cannot take any criticism and driving with him for example is very trying as he complains and scowls deeply at any person who may be driving slower than he wants.etc.


It is extremely difficult sometimes to deal with this . I feel like I am "walking on eggshels" all the time as anything can set him off .He has never physically abused me.
We have many good times and have supported each other over the years and have two wonderfull children who are away at universities most of the time .

The ugly traits have as I said worsened with the pressure of financial difficulties.However after a lot of reflection I do still want to grow old and retire with him .

I am developing a strategy similar to some of the above comments . This involves not reacting emotionally in front of him to nasty comments ,drawing up boundaries regarding when i feel that enough is enough and then removing myself from situations,learning to pick and choose any fights that I may feel are required,believing in myself and knowing that I have always given my best with my marriage and kids ,finding outside interests and sticking with them .

In retrospect many of these are the norm in any marriage . Mostly I have learnt to believe in my self ,understand that my husband really doesnt realise that he is often wrong and continue being strong .

anonymous said...

The latest slight to flip him out was to ask him to please stop talking with his mouth full. He had a whole muffin stuffed in the side of his mouth. Sigh. It's always me. I'm too sensitive.

Anonymous said...

Wow, after reading some of these posts I feel like I shouldn't be here looking for support. Some of you have lasted years with a narcissist while I have just ended one that lasted 6 months. I sure would love to share some of my experiences if anyone would be willing to read.
I think I just need to know that I'm not crazy and there was nothing I could do to fix it. :(

Shontai H said...

It's amazing how things work out. Had it not been for this blog, today probably would've been the start to another stressful, confusing weekend. I live with and have 2 children (and another on the way) with a N that is passive, weak, bisexual and worst of all soon to be the father of 4 girls!! He has a son from a previous relationship that is following in his footsteps and it breaks my heart to watch it happen. Unlike a lot of the other posters, love is not a factor for me anymore. I'm more concerned with getting stable again so I can leave him. I won't talk bad about him to our kids but I often wonder what effect being around him and his son may have already had on them. As for me I'm just trying to get through each day one by one. I feel trapped because I pregnant and I want nothing more than to leave him. I'd rather he didn't even meet the baby. I was so glad to see that other posters had tried therapy and gotten the same responses. It seems like reaching out for help can often do more harm then good. My therapist, my family and basically everyone says I should leave or they blame me but without a support system or a high paying job, I have nowhere to go. I'm so grateful I found this blog and I look forward to getting more inspiration from others.

Anonymous said...

Yes, and it never stops. At first, I thought I was nuts or paranoid or just too suspicious or my own good. However, eventually he was willing to admit he has "made mistakes," but "always been loyal.". The only loyalty he seems to have though is to himself. He doesn't even see flirtatious behavior as disrespectful. It's fascinating and wrong. Of course I now find myself wondering every time the phone goes off who might be on the other end and I am suspicious of nearly every female he knows socially.

Anonymous said...

Anyone out there who does not have children with N but yet, choose to stay in a relationship with N? I'm struggling with one and we've been together for two years. It's been really tough, and seems to get tougher. Just want to chat with someone for support :(

Anonymous said...

I grew up with a father who was a passive emotional abusiver and narcisstic. I suffered from depresssion and anxiety as a young child from all the upheavel and stress. My poor mother came from an abusive/alcoholic home so this educated man she married was literally "God" to her. She never raised her voice to him, just worked harder at trying to keep him happy. The three of kids should have just never existed cause he basicly ignored us, it was as if we were bothering him. My brother ended up like him only alcoholic, and my sister married and alcoholic looser. I have been married three times,to your typical sociopath at 19, then to a alcoholic for 21yrs, I then met my current husband, handsome,charming,good job,intellegent. He couldn't buy me enough, but could not commit. Long story short, left went back,he married me..He is the only one in this relationship that does anything right..and he will tell you that he is"right most of time".I thought it was me for a long time, but I was attracted to what familar to me "chaous". My kids are second best to his and are there friends. Outsiders are beneath him. He will badger you and out talk you till you walk away or want to scream.I have chosen not to engage in any big arguements with him anymore because I am the looser, always. He is like a small child, if he doesn;t get his way he gets aggitated. I left and moved into a rental unit we own for 6 months, had court date to finalze the divorce,he went to a good friend of mine crying..he woowed my back.MISTAKE! It was OK for awhile, then back to the same old stuff.Told him to get therapy, 3 visits..he's done. I am 59yrs old and trying to decide what to do, although I know what I should do.I went to a therapist for a long time so I know why me and all the others are with these type of people..we most likely came from a chaotic situation and we are attracted to what is "familiar".My Father would never disclose to my mom what he had as far as money. He did have alot at one time, my alcoholic brother took alot of it,my dad was not as smart as he thought he was and wasted alot. He left my mom at 78 with $12,000 and a house in an elite area. She was already suffering from demetia that him and my brother never told me about. She is now in a nursing home on Medicaid and I am seeing her through these last years of her life. If you are in one these relationships...RUN

Anonymous said...

Mine blames it on menopause and says that I have a hormonal imbalance that makes me turn into a crazy person anytime i get emotional about feeling let down or feeling like i'm not being treated as a person. The fact that I had my hormone levels tested at the doctors office and I have on paper that my hormone levels are fine make no difference. He has decided that's what it is and because narcissists choose their own reality there is no convincing him otherwise.

Anonymous said...

My experience is that most of them like to blames others for situations and get others to take care of or carry out tasks for the,so they won't get the blame. I've learned to ignore this behavior.He goes into his hurt child mode when this happense.He does no like competition and he always does it better.It is maddning.He also tries to get to you with sex. I finally learned to turn down his gifts for any occasion, it is just a ploy.Mine will try to get me to use my money or pay half for whatever project I might suggest around the house..drives me nuts! So cheap! But he will squirrel away all his while your paying all the bills

Susanna said...

After thinking I was going literally insane, I finally found out this morning that I've been married to a man with narcissism for nearly ten years. The intense feel of relief was incredible. I'm not crazy, there is nothing wrong with me. I'm not cold, frigid, uncaring. I'm just tired of lying to myself, covering for him, making him look good. I'm tired of being controlled, manipulated. I want to be able to talk to people without his jealous remarks at home, his insults in public. I can't stand his inability to communicate, his coldness, the hatred in his eyes when I don't do what he wants. I don't want him to tell me what I can write on FB, I don't want him to read my private messages. I hate the way he touches me; he treats me like a call girl. He doesn't make love, he doesn't know how, it's all about his own pleasure. He doesn't talk to me, gets angry when I feel sad, upset or hurt. He leaves when I need him the most, but expects me to support him in everything he does, there is no "us," it's all about him. He doesn't care about the books I write, he actively works against me when I need to work. He is emotionally cold, he doesn't know how to love. He gives money to whom he wants to (especially himself), but when I need anything, he complains that I spend too much. He used to tell me that I was "an ok babysitter" (i.e. a bad mother). Yet, he leaves me with the kids for weeks, he is rarely home. He forced me to continue the business he started and didn't want to continue himself - not because of the money, but because he wants me to do it. The day I confronted him due to his inability to accept the fact that we were going to lose our house and I slapped him out of absolute, sheer frustration at his arrogant contempt for my daring to question his ability to pay for the house, he called the police and filed a domestic violence report. When he slammed my laptop on my face when I tried to avoid an argument, he expected me to apologize to him. He expects the children and I to serve him, but doesn't lift a finger to help anyone. He does nothing around the house, he leaves his clothes on the floor, doesn't bother to pick up the folded laundry from the laundry room. He complains about the house being dirty weekly, yet doesn't clean up after himself - ever. If he gets up with the kids, they don't get breakfast. He is a professional chef; he doesn't ever cook for us.
How does anyone live with a man like that? I don't know. I'm worn out emotionally, physically and spiritually. I was a teetotaler before I got married; 2 years into the marriage and I was drinking a bottle of wine every day. I just want out.

Anonymous said...

I have been experiencing the same thing for 14 yrs. I should have listened to my gut when I was dating him.He would hide behind his kids,and treated me at times like I was not that important to him. 2 1/2 yrs into it I walked out, when I told him I loved him and he said, "I like you alot to".I didn't see him for almost a year and the he started calling and lured me back. We got married and it has not been fun..he also treats me like his "sexual play toy", he doesn't know how to love anyone or feel any compassion or empathy, not even for his own mother. I fear that if I got ill my daughter would have to take care of me. His 83yr mother is very ill and he has not lifted a finger to help his siblings with her, he has all kind of excuses. He to doles out the work to others so he doesn't have to be bothered, and he is a bully..loves to control and get in your face..we have no friends because he has run them all off. Thank god I have stayed in touch with my girlfriends and get out with them to blow off steam. There is no living with someone like this, my dad was the same way and it drove my mom nuts. I understand when someone says " I am insane"..no the person you are living with is. You have to live with a person like this to appreciate what they are all about. It is "ambient abuse" it slowly eats away at you. I am sleeping on the couch right now after he pushed another friend of ours away, and of course everyone else in a "a--hole".If you work and can fend for yourself you better have a plan and move on cuz they don't change, they just feed you a line you want to hear and it starts all over and you are always to blame.

mschif said...

I am not sure if my husband is an actual narcissist or if he is a chauvenist that was catered to by his mom for too long. He was very kind and loving before we married. Shortly after the wedding he became a different person. We use to cook together and he would help me with things broken in the house. He brought me small gifts and told me he loved me everyday. Now he goes months at a time without saying he loves me. He won't lift a finger in the house. He won't even lift the seat when he pees and he sprays all over the seat. His mom was visitng when I injured my leg and she hadn't been to the USA before so I didn't want to spoil her trip and I hobbled around a bum leg for 3 months while we took her on weekend trips to zoos, the city, etc. and when I would need to rest my leg he didn't have much empathy. I came home from working ten hours one Friday and packed my stuff for our latest trip. My leg was swollen and whenever I walked down the stairs my tibia popped out in front of my knee which caused me to collapse and hurt a great deal. So I asked him if he would please go downstairs and fill the cat's water and food dish so I could rest my leg before I packed his bag. He looked at me with hate in his eyes and asked me, "Aren't you ashamed to ask me to do that?" and I said, "What do you mean" and he said "It's not my cat why should I feed it and why haven't you packed my stuff yet?". A week before his mother left I finally went to the doctor and found out that yes, my leg was broken and the meniscus was completely torn off and I needed surgery. After his mom left I had surgery and was laid up in bed for weeks. He wouldn't even come into the room and talk to me and left me alone the whole time. He has frequent outbusts of anger and throws and breaks things. He looks in my phone all the time but accuses me of looking at his. He expects me to bring his food to him and pick up his dishes that he leaves everywhere. He leaves his clothes everywhere too. He says that I am messy. Anybody that knows me knows I am a neat freak, almost to the point of being OCD but nothing is good enough for him. He can't be happy at home on the weekends and he wants to be out at a bar every weekend night where he can have fun and he doesn't care that I don't like bars. He calls me cuss names in arabic all the time. He interrupts me all the time. He shows no compassion at all when I am sad about my niece that passed away and when it happened all he wanted to do was go into the apartment to see the body while the police were still there and kept trying to get her mother and myself to go inside to see the body. He seemed to have no idea at all that seeing her body at that moment, in that condition, was not what we wanted and he kept insisting. He was like a person driving passed a car wreck that couldn't stop gawking and didn't really care about the people. He tells me that he is leaving all the time but never does. I get fed up and beg him to leave and he says he will but then he doesn't. Then he will be super nice for a few days and even act sorry, but never says sorry, but it doesn't last long and he starts having tantrums and calling me names again. He blames me for his behavior. WHen he broke his computer because he got mad and thre it, he said it was my fault and he expected me to pay for it. There are a million more examples. So is this guy a narcissist or a is this common behavior for arab men?

Anonymous said...

He is a spoiled,unabled to care for himself Arab man,not unlike alot of men. He is also narcissict,when anyone can just turn away for any hurting person, there is something terribly wrong. My husband is also narcissictic,not able to be empathetic,compassionate with anyone, not even his own family, it is all about them. I have a mother who is suffering from late stage dementia and I get nothing from him..he tells me you ust need to deal with it. If you have no children and a job you need to leave. Find a support system and make your plans carefully and quietly, give him no ammunition and build a new life. Your situation will not change, he will be nice for awhile and it goes right back to square one when he has you where he wants you..Now why would he want to feed the cat? That's not his job! God Bless You

Anonymous said...

For years I thought I was crazy until I read about narcissm...these behaviors are my husband to a T. The bad mouthing everyone, being superior to everyone, having no patience, easily angered, easily walking away from relationships, all of it. My husband has never helped me With cooking, cleaning, laundry, etc. I pay all the bills, do everything with our kids, and basically take care of everything. Yet, he finds fault with all of it, all of the time. My friends aren't good enough for him, the house is never clean enough, if the kids leave toys out he flys into a rage. He is not physically abusive, but he has me or one of the kids in tears frequently. He's a trithathlete and quickly became addicted to exercise a few years ago after his first race. Now he burns through all our money and if he's not working, he's exercising, usually 30-40 hours a week. If I need him to change his schedule, he acts like an animal backed into a corner, so I end up doing everything myself, because its easier. What's crazy is, almost everyone (except for a few close friends who have seen his real self) love him and think he's a great guy, husband and father. He's not a bad person (I don't think intentionally) but since he's always had such strong opinions and preferences (for, literally, everything), I feel like I've babied him but always letting him have his way. Now, 12 years later,, and he's completely inflexible, and incapable of compromising or sharing. I feel like I'm only good for what he can get out of me. I'm a stay at home mom, so I'm now looking for a job so I can get out of this marriage and move on with my life. What's sad is, despite all this, I still love him, even though I know he doesn't really love me. We have young kids, and since my parents were divorced, it kills me to do this to them. I feel like this is my fault for marrying their father in the first place.

Chalou said...

I guess im just looking for some external input. I have a history of depression and self worth issues, it was in the worst of this i met my husband. Looking back he exhibited all the classic traits of a narcissist, at that time i was the crazy one, over time i got recovered and eventually left him for 7 months he went to marriage councilling and was told he was abusive. When i moved back he became super passive now i feel like im the abuser everytime i get angry, i feel like the horrible narcissist. He works away a lot and when hes gone i feel great but as soon as he is back im the monster, playing the same childish games he plays. Am i the real narcissist? Help im so confused, im seeing a counciller now but im so scared that with my history no one will ever believe me. I just want to know if anyone has found themselves in the same situation. Any comment would be appreciated as i know i have flaws i am so worried that i have become him :-(

Anonymous said...

it seems my wife is a narcissist. What I'm reading here lines up with our marriage for almost 30 years. When I finally stopped reacting to the nonsense, she seems to draw me back with sweetness, only to unleash criticism and anger once I let down my guard.

Doesn't seem to be able to distinguish little things from important things. Accuses me of the very behaviors and attitudes that she displays with every conversation about my many failures.

Anonymous said...

I have lived with a narcissist for the last 10 yrs, everyone of them is different and don't display all symptoms. I have finally come to the conclusion that these people can not be helped. If you are one of those people who are abused you need to find a way to leave the relationship, it will make you physically & mentally sick. If friends and family members are seeing this same behavior in this person it is not just you. They will lure you back with kindness, bit it only temporary and things just revert back when they have you where they want you.

Anonymous said...

I am also relieved to find this site. I hope people are still on this blog. From the honeymoon, his demands for things/creating a crisis out of a neutral situation ("I demand a copy of your car key RIGHT NOW!! Now we are married and I have a RIGHT TO YOUR CAR!!!) struck me as bizarre, but I guess I tried to adjust and adapt thinking maybe he didn't mean it like that. Don't most normal people have discussions and / or make polite requests? Anyway, I have learned and hopefully have grown more of a spine through it all, and distanced myself emotionally and have been busy making plans for protection and provision for myself. I have been practicing 'detached amusement' when interacting with him now. I am thankful I know what I am dealing with (narcissism) and realize I can change my reactions to him, which changes me, which at this point is all I care to do.

Anonymous said...

I am so sad. I feel so alone. Reading these posts have helped somewhat, but the reality is that I have no one to talk to... and the person who is supposed to be my support (my husband) is the cause. We have three children and I walk on eggshells to prevent a flare-up in front of them. Added to the N behaviors is functioning alcoholism, if there is such a thing. After a particularly horrible incient last night I gave my husband an ulimatum...he has until March 1 to get into regular counseling or our marriage is over. I mean it. I have never said those words. I don' know what to do... it is all so sad, I am heart sick. My kids try to please him... it is sick. I do not want them to grow up thinking this behavior is acceptable. The only way is to have him change or for me to make the statement to them that this behavior is so deplorable that it caused our family to break apart. I honestly do not know if I love him anymore. He has taken, taken, taken from me... I am just living for my kids... trying to give them a great and happy childhood. Trying to offset the damage he does. No one knows any of this. I am tired of crying in the shower.

Anonymous said...

You need to confide in someone to get it out of your systme and get supported. There many us out there. These people rarely change and you will continue to suffer. Make plans for you and your children and move forward. DO NOT listen if he tries to pull you back in, you will soon be back in the same situation. Resolve this and make a better future.

Anonymous said...

I have also been with an N for 16 years, married for 14. I have two children, and although he was always a good loving father to them, i have noticed that now they are getting older (age 11 and 10)he has started to inflict his vial behaviour on to them. He has an obsession with downloading music and gets our son to do it for him, the other day he had the most awful outburst, demanding that our son had taken too long to make the cd for him and how dare he promise to do it and not carry it through!! I get angered with him treating the children this way and have a go at him, and the cycle starts again with the abuse now aimed at me!! Life if just so bad, and i have only just learnt about the word narcissism. I have no love left for my husband, and only stay for the sake of the children as they love their father very much. I have asked him to leave on many occasions, but he always refuses, and says he will never leave his children!! He is obsessed with weight lifting, and goes to the gym every night after work and at the weekend. Every thing is my fault, i am a bitch, selfish and a vial person!!!!!!!! I feel as though i can not go on any more, and am in a very dark place.......Please can anyone advise me??

Anonymous said...

I'm in the same boat as august 21... ive been with this guy for almost 2 yrs; we dont have kids. When we met it was whirl wind... he came over for dinner and never left!! It was so perfect to begin with, i almost couldnt believe it. But of course, things began to change, slowly at first, so i didnt really worry. But then his behaviour became more and more eratic; losing his shit over the most the ridiculous things, like me wearing socks when he thought it was too hot!! Then he began saying things that would clearly get me to bite and become confrontational and then mid way through the argument hed adamently deny ever having said it... it made me really start to think i was insane. I began writing things down when he said them or id hit record on my phone, just so id have them there to look back on later... it helps. He also loved belittling me in public, but i began doing it back, so he stopped (mostly). Hes left me several times, taking all of his stuff with him and always promising that it will be the last time, that im just to fowl a person to live with, but he always comes back and every time he says that he never actually broke up with me, that was just how i percieved it. In the begining i was glad when he came back, i really was... twice i even went and got him and brought him back. But last time i tried to fight it. Id even met a really nice guy who i liked and who liked me. But somehow my N got me to leave this nice guy and take him back. Since then, about 2 months ago, we've had the typical ups and downs... though the downs top out im afraid. He was really good for about a week but then it all fell back into place; i dont treat him the way he should be treated, im selfish and a "pig". Of course, all of this is intermingled with bouts of "i love you"s and "How could i ever be mad with you"s... It blows my mind that i would ever let a man do this to me; and i do let him. He left again tonight... why? i was late home and he angrily accused me of lying about where i was, even though id told him where i was. When i reacted the called me an "insane bitch" and said that i should have laughed it off. So he went upstairs, packed his things and left. I hope this time he stays gone... I hope he doesnt try to contact me, because for some reason i think i'll take him back... again. Why do we do this to ourselves??????????

melanie yorston said...

my 20 year old daughter is a narcissist. I called the cops on her last night because she flipped out and started breaking dishes because I didn't have $20 to give her. She is working, I'm collecting unemployment. What hurts the most is she does this in front of her son who will be 3 in a couple months. My grandson is the sweetest thing ever and I'm terrified that witnessing all her outbursts will "ruin" him. Thankfully his father is in his life but he has his own anger issues.....oops let me go she just walked in smh

Anonymous said...

I am a little nervous to even write here for fear he will catch me, but I have been literally drowning for over 6 years. I found this page last night and have been reading and crying - but feeling connected to people for the firsts time in what seems like forever.
I am not married, we do not have children, and others think I am crazy for loving my boyfriend. I don't know if I am coming or going - ever. I am scared all of the time, I am lonely, I am angry, disappointed, and feeling empty and hopeless.
When I met him years ago, he was so funny, alive, and adorable - it was like he cast a spell on me, or was some sort of drug. I couldn't get enough of him. Everything was an adventure, fun, passionate - it felt like I found my soulmate.
I was new to the area and did not know anyone - he seemed like a God send.
I overlooked some major warning signs/red flags early on. I was so happy (or so I thought) This is hard to talk about and embarrassing, but here goes...
He is a heavy drinker, I drank with him alot. He would lie about where he was when he was coming home, who he was with constantly. He would fly into a rage if I ever questioned him. He cheated on me numerous times and still to this day denies it all. He had always picked fights, would take off for days at a time, NEVER answer my phone calls or texts and somehow I would end up so grateful when he finally returned regardless of the horrible things he had said and done.
Our relationship was very public - people were very aware of what was going on, but he would shift all of the blame onto me - "I was a crazy b..ch" and far far worse. I began erupting too - making a fool of myself in public - drinking - crying, yelling, lashing out - basically looking like the crazy person he portrayed me to be.

That was the first two years.

You would think I would have left, but he was living with me (rarely helping financially with any bills - he just expected me to take care of it all) He was always buying others drinks, lending money - appearing so generous and fun loving to all - I looked like the nagging crazy woman that he had to deal with...poor guy.
part 2 to follow..

Anonymous said...

Part 2...
The night before my very day of a new job he came home very late - I was awake because I was so nervous/excited about my new job. I made the mistake of confronting him about his where abouts and I ended up with a black eye - worse than Rocky, it was there for months. The next day when he saw it, he disappeared -demanded I not leave the house other than work, and he went about his business - work, bar, whoever he was sleeping with at the time...I was determined to make him leave, but I missed him so much...this is so hard...I am so embarrassed I can't see through my tears to type.
I took him back. He then started cheating on me with a woman we both had met - he stills denied that, but he moved out and right in with her - drove her car-spent her money, and yes cheated on her too. We will refer to her as A.
You think I was done? No. I still loved him, cried over him - if he called I was there..like I was just waiting my turn to be his again. I took whatever time he would give me, the fool I am.
We were on again off again, but never lived together for 2 years - he was living with A (but swearing they were just friends) and she was stalking him, blowing up his phone etc. I knew he was lying to me, I just wanted him to love me sooo much that I didn't care.
He then cheated on A with another girl he then moved in with when A had enough. He then ran to me and A for whatever he needed behind the new girls back.
Why did I let him? I was a beautiful, smart, popular, fun girl - hopelessly addicted to him and to humiliated to admit how sick and unhealthy it was.
He then was thrown out by the new girl and went back to living with A (who was then diagnosed with cancer) He swore to me he was just living there and paying for one of her cars (making it his) - he ended up living between both of our houses but "being with" me. It was a mess. He left and we broke contact for months. We got back together this past summer. He lives here now. He does not touch me, constantly calls me fat, a liar, crazy - and soooo much more. He throws things when he is mad ( he knocked out my front tooth when he threw a tiny fountain at me) - he also denies that as well as the black eye from years past. he is constantly questioning my every thought or move. He screams and is so verbally abusive I don't even know how to explain it. he demands money,cigarettes, use of my car, ignores my calls - never asks how my day was or says thank you - complains I do not cook enough, clean eough, "take care of my man" - he demands I rub his back, but will never touch me. He ccringes if I ask for a kiss and we only have sex when he wants (and then he acts like he has done me a favor - but he will demand oral) He threatens violence if he does not get his way. He lost his job 4 months ago and blames me - A passed a few months ago - he makes me feel like I made him leave her. He drinks daily, I walk on eggshells or I react badly making it worse.
I know you all must think I am as crazy as I feel. I love him - I have been trying to read up on how to handle this. I am trying to defuse his anger - avoid explosions, get the fun back and perhaps some positive attention. I do not want to give up. I am crazy right?

Anonymous said...

part 3
I am sorry to write even more, but it feels good to get it out. I know he will never change - I have been wrestling with accepting him for who and what he is. I am trying to create a better atmosphere without putting my soul and life in jeopardy.
I do not want to hear "just leave him" or throw him out or take control - it is not that easy. I want to be with him, but I want to defuse the volatile areas. I can accept the lack of sex and intimacy.
I know he will never apologize or admit to fault, he has no remorse and takes no responsibility for the problems. He constantly accuses me of telling others our problems - playing the victim. I want to know how I can live with him and myself safely with some stability and security. I do not want to disappear into self loathing and despair. Can anyone understand me or offer guidance? Please...help me

Sincerely,
AJ

Invicta said...

@AJ,

My heart goes out to you and all who have posted here, all who suffer.

First of all, you are the victim of domestic violence. That is reason enough to get out. The violence will not stop.

My theory is that the "love" we feel is actually a conditioned response to an abusive situation- first we are love-bombed, feel euphoric, and then they slowly mess with that feeling, withdrawing that "love" on their part, making us crave it. They keep us off balance so that all we have is the feeling that we think is love- when actually it is our pleasure centre crying out for more.

My theory is that they hit the pleasure centre and then we spend the rest of our lives trying to get back that feeling; the disordered are masters at manipulating our responses until they lay a path in our brain, change our brain chemistry.

Also, when we are feeling bereft, mourning what we had, feeling endless loss, we hang on desperately to that feeling of "love" because that's all we have left.

Things will never change because it's like being a hamster on a wheel. There is no way to condition a disordered character to respond as you want them to when they are as far gone as this criminal you live with. From everything you bravely said, it is clear he debases, degrades and dehumanises you. No amount of love on your part can overcome that. Only you can overcome that for yourself. There is only you in your corner. He never will be.

Having said that, they do make life chaotic, and thoughts and feelings are chaotic. You need some order in your life so that you can finally start to think about yourself. As always I suggest you seek counselling, preferably from someone who deals with domestic violence. He will never stop beating you up.

Secondly, I hope you have a friend or loved one in whom you can confide because you need support.

Thirdly, hide your money.

Fourthly, read everything you can about the disordered. Over and over and over. Knowledge, in this case, is power indeed!

Fifthly, examine your value system. As an example, soulmates do not degrade and dehumanise. Love is not suffering- it is kindness and warmth and inspiration.

Right now it seems as if there is no way out, that things won't get better, that the only hope is to try to get him to change, when he won't. It is difficult and shocking to face that feeling of "love" starkly. It takes guts to examine whether this kind of 'love' is making you blossom, is nurturant, and kind, because that's what love really is.

As for all of us, the issues are complicated. So, start with one little thing, and take one day at a time. In your case, honestly, you do need to get out.

May you go from strength to strength. It is totally up to YOU to change things for the better for yourself and it is clear from the way that you write, that you have what it takes to change things, for the better, for YOUR self. All you need to do is get off the wheel for a moment and take a small step forward.

Anonymous said...

Thank you..what you said is so well put. I just left a relationship of 15yrs(10 married). No physical abuse, but the emotional chaos almost drove me over the edge. After leaving twice before I finally had enough. Thank god for my children and all my goods friends who have supported me. I am slowly mending, but it is hard, because I wish I could feel that euphoric love like I did when we met..but it wasn't real and I realize that now.

Anonymous said...

Recently I,too, discovered I am married to a Narcissist. My life is written in your posts, though some of the details vary.He is 10.5 years older than me and I live for the day he passes so I might have a few years of happiness before my time on earth ends.I know life is way too short to wait, and I will only seek peace, not love, after he is gone.Although there is a remote chance I could leave in a few years, I doubt I will have the spirit and guts to do it.None of my friends believe he treats me this way, as he is such a "nice guy" in public. Today is my birthday, and there was no card AGAIN this year.He has beaten me down emotionally to the point of it nearly not mattering. Just one more way to subvert me, letting me know I don't matter. You will ask why I stay. I am a stepmom, but love my son, daughter and grandaughter as my own.Since he has manipulated them already(by telling them if they ever take their mother in they are out of the will) I know he will tell them to have no contact with me or the same will result. This would break my heart more than it is already crushed.I have 3 dogs who I also love as my children, and he uses them to manipulate me.The putdowns and negative remarks are endless, and the worst is yet to come. I am 56 years old and having some mental decline, which leaves him with even more reason to find fault and degrade me.I have been using one approach, I have been turning it back on him, in ways I am not natured to do since I am a kind person with a big heart.For years I have just taken it, or rushed around trying to make everything"right" before he would see it or find it. An example of what I do wrong at least once a week, is loading the dishwasher. I catch hell if I load it wrong.I have to be vomiting blood for him to "get it" that I am sick, otherwise no rest or recouperation in this house. Seriously. And the check book, well RAGE results when I mess that up.He has chipped away at my feelings for him to where there is nothing left. A few years back he was very angry and told me he was leaving. I lowered myself once again, and begged him to stay. I wish to GOD I would have just let him go.At the time I hated working more than I do him and my goal was to retire at 55, which I did. Now I could financially make it on my own, but the other reasons remain. This is a man, who having 2 children of his own, told me when I wanted a child of my own, that he would not help care for the baby once born.I miscarried and it was probably for the best. No child should have to live like I have lived,emotionally and mentally abused. I wish I knew then,(33 years ago)what I know now.A whole life wasted.They only love and care about themselves. No one else matters.I picture the day that I am free of this,and it satisfies me to think of him, ALONE for the rest of his days. As he should be.

Anonymous said...

If you can financially make it on your own why don't you leave? Most likely his threats are idle. Why do you feel so obligated to someone who has shown you no respect or compassion for 33yrs, even after caring for his children! Make a plan and leave, get some emotional support and counseling and move on. You still have alot of good years left enjoy them. Your emotional decline may be from the emotional abuse he has inflicted on you and depression. My mother died caring for such a person..my father..it was hardly worth it.

Anonymous said...

I finally realized that I have been living with a narcisisst for the past 10 years. I didn't even know that such a condition existed until a couple of days ago. It all makes sense now. I feel relieved to finally understand what is going on but also feel panicked by the lack of treatment information. This blog is so helpful. Does anyone have any advice on how I can seek help from an experienced mental health professional? Or even if support groups exist?

Anonymous said...

I have not found a support group, but finding a good therapist will be your answer. These mental health professional know how a narcissist operates, I lived with one for 10yrs, it is emotionally draining.I would also suggest that you protect yourself financially in case you decide you need to leave and do some reading on how to emotinally detach so you won't be be emotionally pulled in. Good Luck

Anonymous said...

Thank you for your response :) I have been trying to find a therapist but have had no luck thus far finding one that has experience with NPD. I am continuing to look....

That is a good point about finances..my husband has been the one managing our finances until now.

I am so confused about how I should interact with my husband now. He has noticed that I am not getting emotional about his behavior and he looks like he is trying to figure out what to do. He looks to me like a confused child and it makes me feel so badly for him. He keeps telling me how sorry he is and I have to hold myself back. So hard.I am almost certain that his father is a Narcisisst too and his mother doted over him. I can't imagine the mixed messages he grew up with. Not sure what to do :(

Invicta MA said...

@anonymous, February 15, 2013 at 12:39 PM

You have searched for a therapist who understands NPD? And yet, 2 days ago, (February 13, 2013 at 10:30 AM) you commented that you had just discovered NPD. That is amazingly quick work.

On another note, I am now changing settings so that a commenter needs to use a fake name at the very least.

Anonymous said...

I think you misunderstood my reply..I have never been able to find a "local" support group in my area. But I did find a therapist to help my understand who I was living with and how to deal with it. Alot of people out there don't know what a NPD is..I do my father was one.

Invicta MA said...

Okay, without prejudice, I will be instituting a restriction on comments.

Latest anonymous, I have no idea which 'anonymous' you are. Dialogue is just not possible.

Rubix said...

No problem about adding a name...

I find your comment really discouraging. I thought that this site was supposed to provide support. What was your reaction when you first heard about this disorder? Mine - I have spent the past week reading information online and calling MANY mental healthcare providers in my area that do not have doctors that specialize in NPD. You would be surprised at how many offices you can call in 5 days.....

Invicta MA said...

Rubix,

I have no idea which comments were yours.

My reactions when I first figured out that he was a psychopath- my PTSD became full blown. Dying would have been easy. Murdering him would have been easy.

Good luck in your search.

Anonymous said...

I believe support is listening to and trying to stand in the shoes of a person who is in conflict. It is difficult to change a person with NPD. They resist treatment..I know because I have been in a relationship with one for 15yrs. Their issues go way back to childhood. I have left my husband 3 times and have finally come to grips with the fact that he will never change, I have to change my living situation. I would encourage any woman that is with such a person to get emotional support and distance yourself from the relationship..it does not change.

patty said...

Yes, I just realized I have been with a narcissist for the past 11 years (married 9). I always attributed his behavior to prescription drugs, mood swings, work stress, etc. It is a relief to realize this is a disorder but sad to realize it won't change unless he decides to get counseling. That will never happen because he is never the problem. He has taken work in another state and I have flown to see him a few times and we had a great time. But out of the blue he sent me a rude/threatening valentine card saying that I better take care of him (sexually) or I will take the chance of loosing him(?). Why doesn't he fly out to see me then. He took the job out of state. He had been calling me twice a day and then refused my calls for a week so I stopped calling him. Incidents like this have persisted over the years. Silent treatment over nothing to punish me. Usually I don't even know over what. After reading about this disorder I realize he will never change. Sad.

Anonymous said...

I disagree about the three things rule. There is no way he will ever admit to doing anything wrong. Always my fault according to him. If he says something nasty, he really didn't, it was just my interpretation. What a jerk!

Anonymous said...

My husband stated that i rather be a mother than a wife, how about that one. He also has ptsd. Something is wrong with anyone i associate with. Gets very upset if he gets home before me.

Anonymous said...

i keep asking for help and am dissmised by doctors and my own family. i only then turned to internet to seek help on what is wrong with me only to find im maried to a narcissist. i struggle with two year old twins. im in severe depression and anxiety, i dread every day and dont cope well. i need help desperately and dont know how to get it. im distraught reading amost exact accounts of my life but im mostly concerned for my kids. i dont feel fit to take care of afyer do much abuse but cant face leaving in the care of a nercissist. my daughter shows many signs of that trait also, i wanna help her but dont know how when im not coping

Sue Botchie said...

And the Men's RightsAssociation (MRA) are typically whining that divorce is initiated by more wives than husbands. Gee, could it be women have options anare fed up with the narc b.s.?

Noots said...

Dear friend. Thank you for your advice which I am taking on board to help me live with my narcissistic husband. Now I have a name for his problem things are a lot clearer. Jenny c

Anonymous said...

All I can say is, "me, too!" I am exhausted, tired of hearing myself say "it's not about you!" At least I know what to call it now. Knowing it may not change much, but it will help me practice some strategies to take care of myself.

The saddest part for me has been the loss of myself as I have "taken the bait" and responded in ways that I don't like. The anger and resentment have built so that I have been afraid that there is no way back. I finally shared my angst with a friend last week, one who has experienced the same kind of pathology in her family so that she really understands. This simple act, "telling on him", even if only in a private conversation, has made all the difference.

Holding it in, thinking that no one will ever believe that such a charmer could ever be this way, is the worst. I now realize that focusing on him has fed his disease. Thank you to everyone who has posted here. I am deeply grateful to have found this blog!

Joan Pezzollo said...

WOW..just found this group, and Like the rest of you, have been living this Hell for over 15 years..I particularly understood what Patty said. I thought I was the crazy one when my husband threatens to leave me if I don't have sex with him. Who wants to have sex with someone who treats you like a non-person? Patty you are SO lucky he has a job in another state. My husband is a surgeon, so of course is hero-worshipped by the rest of society, and the girls at the office just feed his narcissism. They think I'm the "BITCH"...we have 5 yr. old twins, and both of us have grown children from our first marriages..its incredible how we all can tell the same stories, yet Narcs continue to believe there's nothing wrong with them..Mine is 61 years old, and I am only 47, so therefore am treated mostly like a child. His therapist doesn't get it either..she won't even TELL him that he is a narcissist! WTF is up with that??? Well, If anyone wants to chat, I'm here. Cause I'm living this HELL on a daily basis..any advice would be greatly appreciated...

Anonymous said...

I am so sorry for all of us. We don't deserve the treatment we get. I actually left this horrible situation only to have my "severely narcissistically damaged" husband impose his disfunction on our teenage daughter so severely that I felt like I had no choice but to go back to him to stop him from hurting her to get to me. He was destroying her to hurt me.

I do know what I am dealing with now but it is still very painful sometimes. Like when he is going on vacation with our daughter and paying for her friend to go but I and my son from a previous marriage are not allowed to go. It still hurts when I am denied medical and dental care while he purchases new vehicles. I had plenty of money to take care of myself and my children but he found a way to get it and now I must go with out the basics in life while he lives an extravagant lifestyle. We once had $14 million dollars in the bank and he lost all of it and tells our daughter it was lost due to she and I spending too much. Which is absolutely impossible because he has always controlled all of the money.

It still really hurts when he literally tries to drive me crazy (gas lighting). He told me that I should just commit suicide because I didn't really deserve to be alive. This was shortly after I lost my little brother (whom I raised as my own child) in a car accident.

The really sad part is that I know there is no way out. He will destroy me no matter what I do. That is his goal.

I pray that none of you are in as an extreme situation as mine.

And if you can get out with out them destroying you and everyone you know....do it now. It will never change.

Anonymous said...

Wow! I felt it was ME! That I was the only one! So glad to read everyone's stories and input!