Saturday, January 31, 2009

Loving Narcissists and the Myth of No Contact

November 18, 2009

I think that the exhortation of "no contact" with the narcissist, although rightful in its claim, loses something in the execution. If you begin with "no contact" as a strategy or goal, you are likely to fail. Your feelings and belief system will conquer you. "No contact" is not a must per se; it is something that you find yourself desiring because now you have the narcissist's number. No self-respecting person, and that means, all of us, wants to continue playing with a powerful and sadistic 3 year old. So, your nature will take its course.

If you don't first begin to study and recognise the narcissist within that fancy dancing package, then by focusing on establishing "no contact" at the cost of the complexity of what's happening to your psyche, you will continue to fight your feelings (see, Ten Ways to Freedom from Narcissists) and not the narcissist and their pull. The more you get to know what they're doing, what they are really like, see it for yourself with a clear eye, the more you observe and catalogue, the greater becomes the desire to not inhabit the narcissist's planet any longer.

If they are physically abusive, then, yes, of course, leave if you can. If they have made you so sick that you're ready for intensive care, and you can manage it, then leave. Seek help and support and a safe place. Self preservation supersedes anything else. But it seems that a lot of relationships with narcissists are somewhere in between, often ambiguous and ambivalent, based on exceptionally intense feelings from the victim, and feelings of loyalty and commitment, among others- the "shoulds".

Yes, if you can manage "no contact" because you feel in your gut it is healthier for you than the narcissist, then act upon it. But more powerful and longlasting is the organic desire for no contact, the repulsion and indignity felt and known at the thought of someone trying to suck you in, whether this narcissist or any other, because finally you are beginning to see "a soul with no footprints", the predictable groteseque within. If you remain resolved, the temptation to listen to and believe the narcissist lessens over time and in its place grows a steadfastness that will no longer allow this misshapen freak to dictate the terms of our inner and outer lives. And the reason you now can use that word, "allow", is because now you have a real choice in a way you never had when your mind and emotions were held in thrall while being expertly and methodically raped.

In my experience, people keep going back to the narcissist because their feelings and belief system are continuously manipulated and transfigured into the narcissist's desire or fantasy. Narcissists can be a convincing lot and our own beliefs and feelings find reinforcement, not only from them, but from ourselves. "No contact" is the brute force attempt, in my estimation, to separate from the beautiful illusion so hankered for that they sell us, thinking it reality. When in fact, what we need to do, is gradually separate from the actual and absolute truth, what they really are and do. And to see the unholy damage they leave in their wake.

I believe that healing from trauma is a process of transformation, and cannot be forced, willed or manipulated. "No contact" has grown into a huge, mythological chimera that claims to cure most ills. It doesn't. It's only a part of the equation.

~ © InvictaMA 2009-2014

52 comments:

Anonymous said...

I agree with you that it's a process. I failed at NC so many times, and continued to go back. Each time I did become stronger, and truly see what I was up against. My eyes are now wide open, and it isn't difficult anymore.

Barbara said...

ABSOLUTELY. NC is only a small part. It gives victims distance so they can have clarity. But a cure-all? No. Great post

Denise said...

I failed so many times over the past 3 years but left 3 weeks ago for the last time and moved far away. No contact is very difficult but for me each time I left I got stronger and this time I had enough of the abuse.

Anonymous said...

After thirty five years...established a break from my mother. Just last night realized she is a psychopath...a narcissist. I am so validated from my knowledge. I can now fight my feelings of sympathy, memories of "love." thanks for the website. I can't wait to read on.

quoll said...

Thank you so much for this. It is without doubt the very best aacount of what happens that I've ever read. Word for word, that is what I've done.

Getting away from my female persecutor was a waiting game. The level of attachment that I experienced was beyond anything I could ever have imagined. It kept me in there for years absorbing abuse of all sorts. Undoubtedly a trauma bond built on her monstrous betrayal of me while I was undertaking psychotherapy for very tender and difficult life history issues. The attachment formed at that time was almost fatal for me.

However, through diligent reading and research and psychotherapy I learned to trust my intuition and my sense of self. I moved out of her house to a safe space, sustained a relationship with my children (not children by her), initiated a new career and built economic security. All the time I allowed myself to continue the attachment. I say allowed but that really there was no choice. It was just overwhelming attachment for me. I watched, studied, waited; looked for the patterns of abuse and manipulation and my own patterns of acceptance and subjugation.

I drew my boundaries and told her what they were knowing that the mere sight of a line in the sand would provoke her to transgress.

Intuition told me that the moment you describe would arrive one day:

"But more powerful and longlasting is the organic desire for no contact, the repulsion and indignity felt and known at the thought of someone trying to suck you in, whether this narcissist or any other, because finally you are beginning to see "a soul with no footprints", the predictable groteseque within."

Perfect. It took five long years, exactly half the relationship, for that moment to arrive. When it did the organic revulsion was overwhelming and unstoppable. A force of nature in itself. There is no doubt now that I am totally free.

So, agreed, no contact can be an effective brute force approach if you have good supports and massive resolve. The other path, the one you descibe, takes you inward and is genuinely transformative. Having walked that path the end is gentle - no dramas, no button pushing, no attachment. You just keep on walking.

Thanks again. Most therapists do not have your understanding.

Anonymous said...

I have a comment that I haven't heard yet from anyone else. I am frustrated and saddened that one of my closest women friends doesn't at all understand what I went through, surviving a relationship with a narcissist psychopath, and blames me for it, as if I was a willing victim. She actually is a very good person and a very long term good friend, but on this subject she has shut down, not willing to take anything more in. That's hard to live with but I suppose it's just one of the things I have to accept as the aftermath - a sense of misunderstanding and emotional isolation because of the experience, because almost no one understands it. They think I have a "victim mindset" or some such thing but I have nothing of the kind. Worse, because it caused me to go through a real breakdown, they think it's my craziness, when I simply am not crazy, though it certainly did make me as sick as a person could get and live to tell.

It's very, very difficult to get support on this in any quarter, including mental health professionals, many of whom are uneducated or unaware of the effects on a normal person of an intimate encounter or relationship with someone who is a narcissistic psychopath, or they don't recognize it when they see it. There is a great tendancy to go into all that co-dependent crap, blaming the victim which is like being re-victimized, like a woman pressing charges for a rape and being raped again in court with character assasination and accusations that the woman was responsible for the rape - disgusting.

That's why this blog is so incredibly valuable and appreciated by those of us who come to listen and share. There is a great loneliness to this experience because it is so singular and so mindblowing. I suppose the best one can do after learning as much as possible and letting go is simply to move on. And understand that others will not understand and not blame them for it or expect them to. It wasn't their experience and who could fathom it unless they'd been through it personally? It took me a lot of years and it was a matter of personal survival, because I was literally destroyed by the experience, lost my mind, my home, my job - that's a lot to lose. But I've regained them. I am so happy that I can finally put this in the perspective it belongs in. It does suck that so many people still think this guy is the bee's knee's, such a nice guy and that my closest friends even don't understand what I went through, but at least I have my life and my sanity and my soul back, very much healed.

I really appreciate the absense of meanness on this site. Thanks for listening.

Leslie

Anonymous said...

This site has been so very helpful and gives me much light on something I've been working hard on, unhooking from a relationship with my narcissistic daughter.I am finally at the point where she is disgusting to me. I have created distance but some of my emotions are still tied up with her. I'm starting to feel deep down repulsed at the ways she has used, abused and treated me. No more. I am a free woman and this new freedom feels good. Thank you for putting into words, things my heart feels. Now on to a good and wholesome future.

cocoonphase said...

Anonymous/Leslie: With regard to your unsympathetic friend, I can't help but wonder if her behavior is some form of self-defense.

For example, if at some time in the past she had personally mirrored the same narcissistic behaviors you described, or something similar, (and good on you for managing to escape that "nice guy," btw!), her sympathies could lie more easily with him than they would with you. Or-- on the other hand-- if she were still in a relationship with heavy emotional attachment to a narcissist, and had yet to recognize the destructive nature of this person's behavior, that would also provide reason for her emotional defenses to kick in against your side of the story.

Whatever the case, her input at this point in time only serves to undermine your own determination, and I hope you've found a better source of emotional support! Narcissists are often charming enough as it is without outside help.

Anonymous said...

i think the process of disengaging from an n is like being an addict coming off a drug. like a drug i knew my n was bad for me, and was going to seriously mess with my head if i did not get out, yet i couldnt let go initially and perversely i kept going back in for more and if i am honest with myself maybe part of me enjoyed living on the edge with the danger and the excitement. my life was certainly more colourful than it had ever been.
all the drug advice for addicts say, cut down slowly and and it certainly applied to me because i had to slowly come to terms with the fact that the relationship was all an illusion and part of me did not want to give up hope and kept thinking i could reach him through all the layers of his sickness. it took a long time to realise my quest was utterly totally hopeless and i think if i had suddenly cut off i would have been in shock. i slowly in my own time came to realise the hopelessness of everything, while continuing to get hurt and abused by him, until eventually the illusion was totally gone and i was no longer under his spell. interestingly, he knew it and by the time i was truly strong enough to stand up to him and conquer his n rages, he knew it and no confrontation ever took place, he found new ns elsewhere.

Anonymous said...

i would like to respond to leslie if i may, although a long time has elapsed since the original post. just to say i too have had some problems with friends not understanding and saying stuff like, well you'll just have to learn and move on and this is such an understatement. it feels like coming from a war on the front line back to civilian life and no one has a clue the true extent of the horrors you witnessed and endured. but my personal take was that it was so hard for them to see me going through what i did and i think for some of them they just sort of shut down because it was too painful and they knew that they didnt know what to say or how to help and felt it was too huge a problem to cope with. and then i think it turned to a sort of resentment towards me, from guilt and frustration. thats why i am so grateful for this site, because we have all shared similar experiences and can understand and empathise with others here.

Anonymous said...

NC was easy for me...I couldnt take anymore. Hearing the voice or seeing the face of the N prolongs the healing. Feelings of hopelessness,terror and confusion come racing back for me; hands shaking, stomache churning. I have had NC for one year and in that time have recovered my MIND. I have a long way to go but if I remove NC, the process will be prolonged ... then "the games" begin again. And I dont play them any longer. By going NC, I am in control..and the N hates this. He is the face of evil...and I flee from it; to do otherwise, undermines all of the damage he is capablel of doing.

Anonymous said...

To Leslie, I have a few "friends" who dont WANT to believe the horror of my story. They cant go there. It upsets the order of their universe, raising doubts and questions about reality and truth and their own intelligence/discernment. Its easier to blame me or dismiss it. I have found it best not to defend yourself or talk. Let the Ns sickness come out and it will. You will be exonerated with time. ..let others come to the truth themselves. It may take years, but the truth prevails. You cant make them believe you because they would have to admit to being duped as well. That implies they are stupid. Be strong, be happy, and move on...and thank God for freedom.

Anonymous said...

Okay, great. What do I do about our kids? No way I'll get custody and NC condemns them to another generation of NPD. I already see it in two of them.

It's taken me 20 years to figure out why I've felt so bad about myself, a well educated and talented person who seems unable to break through. Her support has been unreliable, and she sabotaged me when I appeared to be on the cusp of big success. Her mother was an obvious NPD, and I thought I was riding in on a white horse to rescue her daughter LOL. Any suggestions for folks dealing with custody and other arrangements? Her style is quieter and she's very good at drawing sympathy. She's also beautiful. I'm going to get HORRIBLE PR when I pull the plug but it got to the point of suicidal impulses to escape. No more for me.

Anonymous said...

It has taken me years and I mean years to realize that I am dealing with a narcisistic personality disorder. First I started reading everything I could and it was all there, right in my face the whole time. I finally got it! I got it. I stopped all communications with that person. I saw anger in them...retaliation, rage...why, because they no longer could put me down, and make me their victim. How do I feel, I feel fantastic, it is the best thing I could ever have done...stopped all communication. They are just now starting to try to get me back into their world. I am not ready to go there, yet. I feel so sorry for them. I wish I could help them, but if I were to mention anything to them that they may have NPD, oh my the roof would come off the house. So I choose to stay put.I feel really good, like a weight has been lifted off my shoulderss, it is kinda weird but it worked as hard as it was. Victims deal everyday with what did I do, where did I go wrong...and the sad truth is, you did not one thing, the narcisist makes you feel like you did in every way. So hang in there and remember, it is not you...once you really, and I mean really reach that stage, you will be surprised how much your life will change, for the better. Good luck to all of you and keep reading.

Anonymous said...

I don't get it. So the revulsion and complete acceptance of the reality of their behaviors makes it possible to remain in contact? Somebody please take me by the hand here.

Anonymous said...

What do you do when the Narcissist is you firstborn 18yr old son whom you loved unconditionally since the day he was born..no abuse or neglect..I swear! I left for 7 days when he was 18 months old to give birth and he seemed detached ever since. Please help me as I am his victim! I am devastated!

Heartbroken Mom said...

Please address any comments to the last post regarding my son to "Heartbroken Mom". Thanks.

Anonymous said...

I came across this site because I was looking for ways to help me cope with a very ugly breakup with someone my therapist has since diagonosed with Narcissistic Personality Disorder. I didn't realize it while I was in the relationship because everything seemed perfect. I was so blindsighted by how good he looks on paper, and so flattered that someone like that would worship me the way he did. He was a walking infomercial for himself, and had me competley duped into believing that he was actually the amazing person he likes to think that he is. It's been about 2 months now since we broke up, and I still haven't come to terms with the fact that the man I was in love with was a different person than who this guy really is. Part of what is making things so difficult is the fact that we work together, and I see him every day (he's a superior, though not my direct boss, and no one at work knows). Seeing him in the hallway still makes me physically sick, especially since I recently found out that he went online and found someone to replace me 3 weeks after we broke up. Leaving my job isn't an option unfortunately, but I'm really struggling with how I'm supposed to cope with this and separate myself from him when NC is genuinely impossible. Any words of wisdom here?

Kathy said...

My comment is for Ann Aug 3rd. My heart goes out to you having to see your N in person. I think the best thing that you can do is to build yourself up. Focus on your needs, treat yourself with kindness and remember to use positive thinking regarding yourself. My thought is that the more you focus on builing yourself up, the less you will focus on him and his negative traits. When you see him and react physically pay attention to your thoughts. Maybe say a prayer for him, or for the sucker that he just found to replace you. Then remember how strong and smart you were to get out of the abusive relationship. Every time you see him let it be a reminder of your wisdom and movement towards personal success.

Anonymous said...

To Heartbroken Mum - I can so empathise with you. My n was a 16-yr boy I took on as a son and 5 years down the line I have now done the very opposite of everything I set out to do for him and I have severed contact with him. the years from 16-18 were the worst because that is the difficult time with teenagers anyway, coupled with npd you have nothing short of the devil. He did get a little better as he grew older, the natural maturing process did help somewhat.At 18 he found a job which helped me because he was out of the house in the daytime, the abuse was only at weekends and evenings and I had the time and the privacy to research, identify and learn all about his condition. His work was chequered because he had this inflated sense of his importance but got sacked becasue he didn't think the rules that applied to the other workers applied to him too. He would take his coffee breaks in the staff room designated for the higher level workers, and sat there with such an air of importance that people believed him to be management! I supported him until he was old enough to leave home and support himself then I helped him out with considerable finances to help him set up on his own with his partner. It was easier again once he was no longer living with me and he wasn't so abusive to me. But he renaged on a financial arrangement with me, no remorse or apology, and he has started to become violent towards his partner. I spent a day in A&E with his partner whom he had driven to a suicide attempt and just a couple of weeks later he was arrested and imprisoned overnight for beating them up. That for me was my final breaking point: I realised I could no longer take the stress and distress and the betrayals or trust. I gave years of unconditional love but I have given up now. it goes against every single atom of our mothering instincts but we were not meant to nurture monsters. Please dont question how it happened, many young children have to spend periods apart from their mums for some reason, and they don't all grow into n's or psychopaths. the important thing is that for whatever reason he is not normal and you have to think of yourself and the other people in your life. sadly, just as some people fall to physical illness that cannot be helped, there are people who cannot be helped spiritually. If love was able to heal your son's sickness, it would have done so years ago. i reached out with every fibre in my being to try to touch my n and I have no doubt you have done so too. Your first stage of your own healing is to let go of blaming yourself as to why he became a n, and to accept that he is as he is and will not change. If there was any cure or help for npd this website would be full of the good news. You have already done the impossible and brought your son through to adulthood, now you must start to think of your own health.

Anonymous said...

To Heartbroken Mum My n was a 16-yr boy I took on as a son and 5 years down the line I have now done the very opposite of everything I set out to do for him and I have severed contact with him. the years from 16-18 were worst because that's the difficult time with teenagers anyway, coupled with npd you have nothing short of the devil. He did get a little better as he grew older, the natural maturing process did help somewhat.At 18 he found a job which helped as the abuse was only at weekends and evenings and I had the time and the privacy to research, identify and learn all about his condition. I supported him until he was old enough to leave home at 21 and support himself then I helped him out with considerable finances to help him set up on his own with his partner. It was easier again once he was no longer living with me and he wasn't so abusive to me. But he abused me over finances and started being violent towards his partner. I spent a day in A&E with his partner whom he had driven to a suicide attempt and later he was arrested and imprisoned overnight for beating them up. That for me was my final breaking point: I realised I could no longer take the stress, distress and the betrayals of trust. I gave years of unconditional love but I have given up now. it goes against every single atom of our mothering instincts but we were not meant to nurture monsters. Please dont question how it happened, many young children have to spend periods apart from their mums for some reason, and they don't all grow into n's or psychopaths. sadly, just as some people fall to physical illness that cannot be helped, there are people who cannot be helped spiritually. If love was able to heal your son's sickness, it would have done so years ago. i reached out with every fibre in my being to try to help my n and I have no doubt you have done so too. Your first stage of your own healing is to let go of blaming yourself as to why he became a n, and to accept that he is as he is and will not change. If there was any cure or help for npd this website would be full of the good news. You have already done the impossible and brought your son through to adulthood, now you must start to think of your own health.

Anonymous said...

What do you do if your father is a narcissist and emotionally abusive and your mother won't leave him? I just don't know what to do at this point - I want zero contact with my dad, he's said things to me that make me afraid to go outside the house on a daily basis, I have the worst fears that no one can ever love me. My mom always rationalizes his behavior and she wasn't around for the worst of it when I was a teenager - he was always very careful to scream at me & torment me when she wasn't home. I can't deal with this anymore, all he has to do is raise his voice at me and I might as well be 18 again and wanting to kill myself. He doesn't care about the pain he's caused or the problems I struggle with. I don't know what to do anymore. He's never going to change - I know this and I can't have it in my life anymore. The idea of having a nice life isn't something I think I can ever have, part of me thinks my dad is right and I'll end up a waitress in a greasy spoon when I'm 60.

Anonymous said...

I cannot express how much this site and your posts have saved my life. I am so new at all of this -- a very intuitive spiritual person who didnt even know me, told me I was involved with a N. And I looked it up and found this site and that was just maybe 3 weeks ago so I am, well everyone here knows how I am, but thank GOD for this support and knowing I am not alone, and for guidence, and a feeling of love and understanding, because I was dead except for physically. I wanted to be dead. I, too, was in so much pain and confusion and loss of all reality I couldn't function at all and I kept trying and trying as he played all those horrible games on me and now its a whole other thing when you reliaze everything is a lie and if it were not for all of you people and the (sorry, don't know how to spell check on this yet, in fact its a miracle to me that I can even function, since I was a ghost and I don't know what is going on now) anyway these posts and the original wisdom of Invictis is it? Magic. Like speaking and soothing my soul. I read these over and over and the reply posts over and over and even though the shock etc. is mind-blowing, if I didn't have this, I would never ever know how or what to do, and now at least I have hope, because thnk God I really feel I reached that repulsion as the times I have encountered him since I knew what he was an EXACT replica of every single trait and experience and every single way he is that souless vampire who I loved so much, but now that I know and with this support I can actually be repulsed, although it is so new I don't know its still all I think about, but with knowledge that I am feeding myself that comes form you guys - a map - a way of looking at things -people who know exactly whatis happening whereas there is no one in my real world who could possibly understand how this charming and popular televison personality and comedian who is all over the papers could be anything but awesome and everyone wants to be his friend and OMG but things have shifted as I absorb this but its, i mean, its unbelievable. I believe I am (that no contact post was truly the most insightful piece of writing) because that IS the point: I had tried hundreds of times to leave him but until I saw what he was I always came back and got Tortured and had lost all sense of reality anyway, I do believe I am repulsed enough to walk but of course it is all such a shock since the information is so new its a different pain - there's the "before you know" agoney and the "after you know" agony. At least the after offers hope

Anonymous said...

I cannot express how much this site and your posts have saved my life. I am so new at all of this -- a very intuitive spiritual person who didnt even know me, told me I was involved with a N. And I looked it up and found this site and that was just maybe 3 weeks ago so I am, well everyone here knows how I am, but thank GOD for this support and knowing I am not alone, and for guidence, and a feeling of love and understanding,

Anonymous said...

I just came across the site and I'm hoping this is just the help I need. I'm a mother in her mid-40s with two wonderful kids but an awful marriage. I've been what many of you have dealt with as the other woman. My N was in his mid-20s and made it hard to resist. As a strong woman and thought to be very christian I let the N begin to control me. The N makes it very difficult at first to say no because he knows exactly what to say and string you along. We have continued this friends "with benefits" relationship for 4 years. I have dealt with the ups and downs as he has gotten in and out of relationships with other women while still continuing his relationship with me. I believed I needed him and he needed me...regardless of what he has done to me. The N would make promises that he would rarely keep...but because I thought I knew him better I understood. I never met his other friends or family although he calls me the closest friend he has. I have tried in the past to let him go and to let it die out but he always comes back even stronger. Just this past weekend he invited me to town with promises to get together. As I arrived the weekend he suddenly had things to do and then told me he wasn't interested in me because he now had a new girlfriend. I've cried for days. The N could have told me not to come to town but he didn't even think about me. He did say he was sorry...which was a first...but I don't think he really meant it. The N has no idea how bad it really hurts. The N told me that he wants to stay friends but I've tried telling him that he doesn't really treat me as a friend. I want to let go so bad but I know he will just come back again. I know what he is and I can't seem to stop. I thought I was much stronger than this. I keep trying to think of exactly what to say to him but can't. Please help.

Anonymous said...

I think there's a process of grief that comes with accepting someone you've loved all your life actually has NPD, is an 'emotional vampire' and is attacking you. After suffering the psycological warfare of my sister's many narcissistic 'blaming rages', I finally underwent some psycological counselling for myself. The end result was to identify this as not being my fault and to work through the grief process. I've finally come to acceptance which brings with it relief and peace. Even though this meant saying goodbye to my sister I am still able to love her and more importantly to appreciate the love and care of those around me and to love myself.

Anonymous said...

Have never before wrote on one of these things.. But i never before thought that i would ever become involved with a N for 5 years.... Have never talked to anyone about what i have experienced... its like ive read.. emotional abuse is harder to prove... and i was embarrassed to tell anyone how i'd been treated AND stayed/put up with.
Its a dark hole i live in and dont want to go on blaming myself anymore ... i am desperate to believe in myself and love people..again

Anonymous said...

My N is my sister and I have spent my whole life trying to figure this girl out.. At first I thought Sociopath after seeing the movie Girl, Interrupted then I began reading about these personality disorders on the net and finally came to the conclusion that she definately is atleast a N. I have studied the way she acts my whole life very carefully because I just couldn't understand why or how someone could treat people this way. Well, evn before I knew what she was i figured out to not ever feed into their bullshit.. They're lies, and drama.. I can recognize a N from a mile away now. They will be the person telling you all the horrible things they have been through in their life within the first 5 mins of meeting them.. They first victimize themselves, to hook you. Then they continue to paint a totally false picture of themselves. When they know they got you they then unleash their real faces.. They begin to slowly torture ur emotions, make u feel less and insignificant. They make u feel ugly or stupid.. They will be the people that publically humiliate u when their supposed to be the people that protect u more than anyone.. There always gonna be the boyfriend or girlfriend or family member.. thats the sickest part about them its like they say "we hurt the people we love the most" but they genuinally dont care especially love anyone..

Anonymous said...

I just found you...I am happy I did.

Anonymous said...

This looks like the site I have been searching for. I've been having a long struggle with my daughter, and have concluded that she is indeed a narcissist. There's so much written about N moms, but little about adult children who are Ns, or at least behave that way. I would love to connect with other moms who are experiencing this unique sort of grief and would deeply appreciate any suggestions. Please address any responses to Hopeto. Thanks.

free2beme said...

Dear Hopeto,
I am the Mother of 2 sociopath/Narcissists. the older daughter is 47 in july, the younger one is 45 next week.I have not seen the younger daughter since Feb,1993, when I took her out for a Birthday lunch, showered her with gifts, hugged her, and bought hera lovely meal of Smoked salmon and champagne. Never seen her since. She is living witha rich Jewish boy, and has 3 kids by him, 14, 12, and 2 yrs. Despite desperate pleadings on my part, she has never ever allowed me to see her 3 kids, not even as tiny babies.

The older daughter, D., has bled me dry mentally, emotionally and financially for over 30 years.
Since she left her husnad 5 years ago, I have given her well over $10,000, plus food vouchers, clothes, bedding., lamps, fans,kids clothes, etc.
Her ex husband now has FT custody of her3 kids, now aged 16, 13, and almost 10 yrs. I have not seen her since 8th Dec 2008, and havent spoken to her since June, 2009.
My one boundary,{which she has not met, nor will she ever, Im sure,} was ONE apology for all the lies, con jobs, violence, emotional abuse, her wrecking my art studio,{twice,} painting over some of my paintings, throwing a red hot steam iron at my head. She will not even acknowledge she did these terrible things.I found a great website for sufferers from Narcs, called Lovefraud. It has been my salvation. I have learned so much from the people on it, about gaslighting, projection, mirroring, mental abuse,how they are compulsive liars, how we get sucke d tinto their sick sadistic game playing. I habe little love left for her after all the lies, con tricks, thefts,abuse, etc. and I cant stand her or her sister as people. I am NOTHING like them. I am now much better off without them in my life. I have a lovely second husband, who is supportive of me, he also cant stand them. For years and years, I gave forgave on and on, always hoping theyd change. they have not, they have go worse.
I was hoping so much that my ex son in law would bring the kids over,-hasnt happene, I last saw them 2 years ago. very sad, but I know I CANT weaken and contact her. She is a bitch from hell.I have given up, its about my survival from now on!

Love, MaiaXX Good Luck!

Anonymous said...

I'm jealous that everyone can clearly explain their situation. I feel I was involved with a N (Internet romance).

His emails confused and frustrated me so much, but when other people read the emails, they say, "How is this confusing? He answered your questions clearly, I think."

That is the most frustrating part because it makes me doubt whether I was involved with a N or not. Although, when I read the N symptoms, I just can't help but feel comforted! He must have been a N.

One thing I remember clearly is him not wanting to talk about his past or ex-girlfriends. He wouldn't say anything, not even age. He hinted that his past ex-girlfriends did not ask about his past relationships because they didn't want to be asked about their past. Then, he mentioned something about how sometimes women have affairs with married men. WTH?

It's strange though. I tell my friends about his strange way of avoiding or vaguely answering questions, but they just don't seem to get it. It's tiring to talk about.

Megan said...

What do you do when the narcissist is your identical twin sister, and there is no chance of "no contact" how do you basically get them to hear the word NO and not be manipulated all the time. My mom has fibromyalgia now and is getting sick from all the stress she adds to her house on top of 3 thirty something girls living with her, and our 12 animals combined! Help!!!

Anonymous said...

I have been in a very short relation with a person who surely showed out to be a narcissist but also a sadistic psychopath... somehow. And believe me I got twisted like a bee that got honey. And he was the sweetest dearest until he took his turn. Deeply sexually twisted (even though we had great sex, or I did at least in the beginning) Reassuring me I was god att nothing, dress, makeup, cooking, fucking, my music and filmtaste was shit. It was a shock! Lying so much, but also telling so hard true stories. And after two and a half months it accelarated very quickly. I got severely beaten up. And yet. Me an so called independent well educated woman did not leave, when he told me to. I stayed on with a mixed feeling of dependence and that I had to se who he really is. I am only on the first step of getting out. I had sms contact today. But I know who he is. I am in therapy. My therapist was outrageous today. But I had to see him clearly. He wanted to throw me on the dustbin, when I fully did not understand. I am fighting to fully accept. That this is a rapist a violent man etc etc that I can never change with my so called unlimited love. I had a friend here today, I surrounded me with friends, not long enough relation for him to enter that... Next step it would be. My male friend explained a few things to me about fucked up males. He also said that he would be here in fifteen minutes if he ever showed up. That helped some. I still have the feeling of loss and love and lust. But it is all an delusion.

Anonymous said...

Wow, I am blown away by how accurately this post describes my current feelings toward my (who I believe is a) narcissistic mother. I am currently in the grief stage, reading everything I can on narcissism and crying my eyes out as I recall so many subtle and not-so subtle moments, allowing my feelings to come up. At this point I am totally repulsed by her and can no longer bear her negativity. I am 40 and have spent my adult life appeasing her, and I feel like I sold my soul.

My mother raised me with an enormous amount of guilt, so it's extremely hard to imagine hurting her feelings by rejecting her and going no-contact. I have been sacrificing myself for her and to also avoid those overwhelming guilty feelings that she instilled in me. But that's how they get you, isn't it?

One of the previous posts from November 13, 2010 stunned me in a good way by pointing out that this is not my fault. I keep repeating it. It's not my fault. It's not my fault. I didn't make her this way. This is not my fault. This thought makes me feel peaceful. Thank you, Anon.

And thanks to the owner of this site, as well.

gw said...

I am still in tears after reading your blog. Thank you SO VERY MUCH for helping me find some peace in the obtuse chaos that I have been attempting to resolve for 6 solid months now.

It's amazingly beautiful how much I truly care about people- I work to help someone in need until I pass out apparently. No more, now that I can tell the difference between the the ones who care in return vs the ones that simply return for more.

Bless you. - g.

Anonymous said...

i was decidedly looking for a more complex approach to dealing with narcissists. "they are bad" is only half of the equation. the other half is about yourself. most people dont want to self introspect on a deeper level. i have sympathy for that. for me, the way was to engage fully and let myself be transformed. I am a stubborn controlling individual and I feel that probably only someone absolutely not manageable
like a narcissist had the power to break me up. In a strange way, I am happy that my narcissist love interest squashed all my expectations. Finally I saw the soul without footprints. I was appalled. I stared in the abyss and the abyss stared back at me. There was no one present! Then compassion for both of us developed.

DeBorah said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
DeBorah said...

whole idea that I could have a real relationship filled with love, respect and hope for the future. All I need to say is the normal...he turned on me in the most vile and viscious way,left for several days and I asked him to move out...he already had lined up his NS...he tried to act hurt but he really orchestrated the whole thing... He probably believes that I was dumb enough to fall for that too. I knew he had isssues but what I didn't know was that he had a very real diagnosis.
Thirty four years working in mental health and I didn't realize he was THAT sick. I have been on an emotional roller coaster unlike anything I have EVER experienced. I have good supports...I need to pay them for what amounts to HOURS of talk therapy.

It hurts so bad, facing the truth; the money is gone, the bills are piling up..the crying, the anxiety attacks and he made sure I saw him in his new Cadillac no less. The shame of it all... now for the good news..NC kinda works for me but I am waiting for that call or to run into him and I will be able to treat him like a fly on a hippos back...but then he may never call, he hates my strength, the respect I have from others. He works at the Community Mental Health Center, has a good position... I wonder will it all stay wrapped up in it's neat little package. I think not !!! He plays those people for all the NS they are worth. I bet an occassional client has seen right through that polite, professional, controlled veneer, acting as though he really cares and has emphathy for thier plight. That is where he picked his next victim. Will she be too ashamed to keep his dirty little secrets when he discards her. In the mean time as soon as my own soul, psyche, heart gets over trauma and I am traumitized I will survive this and this will not happen again. If I do have some contact with Mr. N, he will not let me use him on my terms...I do pray for him though because he needs it and I find the act and the sincerity that comes from my heart cleansing. The relationship may be and illusion, I am loathe to think it was ALL just a game. I just can't accept that. I will loose what ounce of sanity I have if I believe that !!!

After all, he is a sick, demented soul and I loved him, I really did and really do. I will carry it to my grave even if I have the good fortune to care for another there will be no other like him, that's for sure. I will be more cautious throwing those three words around..I love you...I think I will seek out some professional help though, that's just how much damage has been done. NC I think it is probably one of the better outcomes for now. Thanks for the ears, the information and above all the understanding.

Anonymous said...

I had no choice but go NC. I was dumped and insulted by text after a year. I never cheated and was a good gf. My ex verbally abused me by text and refused to grow some balls and be a man. He turned everyone against me. I was suicidal and yet he was probably screwing someone else. Yet everyone still took his side. I can't understand how someone can be such an asshole, yet be so popular. I was suicidal yet none of these people contacted me once. I hope he screws all of them over.

Anonymous said...

I'll never forgive him or these two faced sheep that took his side. I've heard of similar bizarre breakups, yet the friends didn't take the cheaters side. I don't think his sheep friends should be so smug and arrogant. It might be them one day.

Anonymous said...

I think some people deserve revenge. Like these users. I'm sick to death with doing the right thing, when none of these people did. Yet for some reason that was ok? They didn't care about screwing me over.

Anonymous said...

I left the N for good almost a year ago. I took an overdose of pain meds because I could no longer cope. I ended up in the hospital and its taken alot of therapy and support from family and friends but I am on the other side of the madness now and doing very well. I was with him for over 3 years off and on and the craziness finally ended. He was horrible and vile and I can see that now. Its taken me alot of work on myself to get to where I am now. I am getting to where I love myself now and my self esteem is coming back because I think that I haven't had much for a long time and that is probably the main reason I ended up with him for so long. No contact is the best thing to do. It may be very difficult at first but it does get easier with time.

JK said...

I dated my male narcissist for 6 months. He proposed marriage within 1 month but I did not give an answer as I told him we didn't know each other well enough. Within 4 months I was quite in love but also suspected that he was sleeping with other women which he denied. When I found irrefutable evidence of at least 5 other women he was/had slept with, his excuse was that he is a man and therefore it was different. He said my only concern should be whether I would convert to his religion and assume the related wifely duties. On the other hand he threatened to kill me if I ever cheated on him. I didn't believe he was capable of this and told him as much. I kept asking myself and him...where is the man that I met? After my leaving and going back several times in the last 2 months, eventually he broke up with me coz I briefly involved another man in my life to try and get over him. This was unforgivable for the Narc even though I was expected to overlook his other women. The last time I (stupidly) initiated contact and went to visit him he assured me he wasn't seeing anyone then used the opportunity to thoroughly humiliate and mentally hurt me as well as his new NS who showed up at the crack of dawn (she had a key). Needless to say each of us was shocked to see the other there. The Narc totally enjoyed the discomfort and pain he caused both us women. Eventually he told me that the other woman won because she was totally submissive and pretty much did whatever he asked especially the deviant sexual acts I had said no to. She also laughed at everything that came out of his mouth (except when he called us both cunts). I admit that I walked right into that trap coz I missed the fake him so much but after that I've been able to maintain NC for 2 months and counting. Much as I miss the "good days" where he put on his Mr. Perfect act, I cannot withstand another such episode and thus never want to hear from him again, neither will I ever contact him. He has taken me so far backwards as far as self confidence and feeling ready for another relationship. I await the day when he is a distant memory but for now healing is a very slow and painful process. One good thing is that while in NC, no one has disrespected me, abused me verbally or emotionally, threatened me or made me feel like crap. Thanks to this blog and all who have shared their stories as this has helped me to make sense of what happened. Respond to JK

Anonymous said...

I am so glad to have found this site. I have not really spoken to anyone about this because like some of the previous posts say, people really just don't understand. If my scars were on the outside I would not be recognizable. It took me 12 years and there are kids involved to realize what I was dealing with. The question for me was always how could someone do that ,hurt, someone else with absolutely no remorse. I have walked away but he is trying to wear me down. The promises, which I can see right through now. Its like having a new pair of glasses and you can reallysee whats around you. Keeping strong, one step at a time, walking in a direction away from him.

Anonymous said...

Why am I SO WEAK, I Can't leave and whenever he says he will leave I have a panic attack so bad I almost start vomiting.
I used to be so strong and would never have put up with this and supported a man financially like this
Wow, I need serious help, but nowhere to turn to.



Janienne Jennrich said...

This statement -- "...now you have a real choice in a way you never had when your mind and emotions were held in thrall while being expertly and methodically raped." says so much. This kind of abuse is psychological rape and absolutely a violent act.

For me, every contact, even such small things as seeing his handwriting, sets my brain spinning into confusion and doubt. I agree that we have to see for ourselves what they are capable of... but in my case, that has been mentally dangerous.

It is unfathomable that someone you have trusted with your life and loved for years could have hidden his or her true intents. Losing a spouse to death would be devastating enough. Losing a spouse and having to deal with the horror of narcissistic personality disorder and the way they just drop you (and their own kids) is even harder.

My story is linked to my name in this post. I would appreciate any and all support, comments, and input. Recovery from a relationship with a malignant narcissist is horrible.

Thanks for speaking out. We need to keep spreading awareness.

Anonymous said...

Disengaging from a narcissist, whether physically or emotionally, is indeed a process. Not only do we, the survivors, learn about narcissism through first-hand experience, we also learn quite a bit about ourselves.

For those of us who have remained with our narcissist, the question is, why do we stay? There are many reasons and they all have to do with our own insecurities: Fear of financial problems, particularly in the case of women with young children; fear of being alone; fear of giving up a bad existence for an even worse one; not wanting to hurt him (yes, they feel pain), etc.

See, it isn't accurate to paint all narcissists with the same brush. Not all of them are malignant. If they were, none of us would stay. Not all of them cheat, habitually lie, or lose their jobs. Some are simply victims of themselves and their own emotional immaturity. They are desperately unhappy and seek to fill the emptiness any way they can. However, they are all energy vampires. Unless you are very strong emotionally, they will suck you dry in their search for whatever it is that they lack.

If you've elected to stay with your narcissist, don't let yourself become isolated. Work at developing a rich, fulfilling life for yourself that does not include your N. The more independence you cultivate, the stronger you will be emotionally, and the easier it will become to deal with the issues he presents.

You may think you love your N and want to spend every minute with him in the hope that he'll change. Alas, he won't change because he can't. To a certain extent, we are what we are--all of us--and, granted, a narcissist has been dealt a very bad hand. Pity him if you like, but don't let yourself get sucked into the undertow of his mental disorder. In fact you may help him the most by helping yourself become the strongest, most self-reliant person you can be.

If you stay with your N, your love for him will eventually cool and die. Period. Sorry for the gloomy prediction, but that's just how it is. Lasting intimate love between two adults depends on emotional equality, and your N is not your emotional equal. While you may always care about him, you will get very tired of his tirades and tantrums, even after you've reached the point of being able to ignore them. You will come to feel more like his mommy than his mate. This is undoubtedly one of the more difficult lessons in Understand Narcissism 101, because we've all grown up to believe that true love conquers all. Trust me, it doesn't.

Believe it or not, reaching a point where you no longer love your N is very liberating. It means you've removed a major stumbling block in your search for a better life, even though you've chosen to remain with him.

Anonymous said...

I know this was posted a long time ago and I'm not sure if you are even still following but I have just found this and I so completely relate. Your statement..." part of me did not want to give up hope and kept thinking i could reach him through all the layers of his sickness"...this is where I'm at right now. Because occasionally he has let me see what lies beneath and what it all stems from, because I have known for a long time he is a narcissist and have accepted it although I still suffer emotionally over not feeling like a person. Because for the most part I am in his inner circle and he shows how much he cares for me unless the random situation arises when I become disappointed or frustrated and react emotionally which in turn brings out the text book narcissist until he feels I have been adequately punished and lets me back into the circle...for all these reason I haven't been able to give up. I left about a month ago and went through a withdrawl like I've never known. I missed him terribly. I cried daily. My children and family urged me to go back to him seeing how miserable I was away from him and I decided that maybe I had given up to soon. Since I've been back its been a complete roller coaster. But I still feel like I'm not trying hard enough. I love him in a desperate kind of way. It feels stronger than any other love I've ever known. So how do I get to the point that I WANT to get out? My logical Vulcan side sees the reality of the situation but my emotional side is trying to hang on for dear life. I logically see I'm my own worst enemy and yet I can't seem to break the emotional ties because when its good its the most fulfilling relationship I've ever had. And obviously my presence here today is the result of a bad day..but the knowledge that if I play by the rules I will get the fulfillment I need keeps me addicted. How do I break the addiction?

Anonymous said...

NC is the ONLY way. The N in my life WAS my M****r. Yes, she is alive...but she WAS as far as I am concerned. She is beyond a N; she is a Psychopath; she has likely killed two people, and has tried to kill me. I caution everyone: the memories that you WANT to have never were. They were lies...you so wanted the N/P to be something worthy of you...and they never were and never will be. Get a good Psychologist or Psychiatrist. I have been in therapy since I was a college freshman and I am 52 years old...I will do this for life. If your situation was anything like mine, you likely have PTSD or C-PTSD...and serious Depression. Are highly physically and empothinally reactive to nearly everything; are possibly agoraphobic; make your best friends with animals, not people...the N/P LOVES that you are like this...you remain weak and easy feed for them this way. It is time to be appropriatly angry...get angry with your therapist or a best friend...do not engage or enrage the N/P...That is a Golden Rule. Have a plan...make this plan with someone trustworthy who believes in you and has become and Enlightened Witness to your life. Read ALICE MILLER; go to her website. You must become as cleansed of this as possible and it is daily work...YOU WILL MISS NOTHING BY GOING NO CONTACT, even if it includes multiple family members....there is only everything to gain.

Michael Boyle said...

I have never think that the way in what some of my friends behave is called narcissism and it is a desease!

Anonymous said...

These people are so FARKED up !!! They just keep coming at you, and coming at you. Just for a little ahh I'm alive !!! I'm getting a restraining order out on Tuesday. My ex N stormed in my house to pick up the rest of his property didn't even knock and then asked me do you mind if I take my stuff ?? Its yours isn't it you idiot lol. He then came in the living area just stood there and gave me an aggressive stare and said nothing wtf ? Then went in to the garage to throw stuff around and snickering. I told him to take it and just get out so he smashed my front door in , for what ??? Get away from them all they are so creepy and sly makes me sick RUN !!!