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narcissist

How to Handle a Narcissist: My Top 3 Tips For Keeping Your Cool

narcissist

 

Each one of us has had to deal with a narcissist at some point or another.  Whether it was an ex, a boss, or a family member, dealing with a narcissist can be challenging and exhausting as all hell!

I get asked a lot, “How do I deal with someone that has to win at all costs?” Well, this is the million-dollar question in high conflict divorce cases.

Narcissists have this remarkable ability to make you feel like you are the crazy one like you are wrong for thinking the way you think, and for feeling the way you feel. It’s as if they have this superpower, a gift that plants doubt inside you that makes you second guess your choices.

How do they do it?!

Let me first paint a picture of who you are dealing with here. These are some common characteristics that define a narcissist.:

  • Narcissists are ego-driven (meaning everything they do is to feed their ego)
  • The need to win is a top priority
  • They have to be right at all costs
  • They need to be superior
  • Their worth is tied to their achievements
  • They need to control others in order to support the outcome they desire. They need to be seen as “the good guy/girl”
  • They don’t think the rules apply to them
  • They think they know more about the law than their own lawyer

Do any of these ring true? If so, you may be dealing with a narcissist.

Here are my tips on how to handle a narcissist:

Don’t fight back!

You already know that you will never win, and you will never get them to empathize with your point of view.  So why do you keep fighting it? If they say the sky is red, then let it be red.  Narcissists thrive on anyone that supplies them with the drugs they need, and that drug is “being right.”  You will keep spinning in the hamster wheel of getting nowhere with someone that will never say to you, “You know what Amy, you are right, I didn’t see things your way.” And continuing to fight will only mirror more of what you don’t want, which is a narcissist in your face.

Let go of any expectations.

What do I mean by this? I realize some of you have no choice but to deal with a narcissist, so going radio silent on them may not be a viable option.  If you have no choice other than to deal with this person, then having expectations will be the death of your sanity. Hopes that they will do the right thing, that they care about your best interest (or the interest of anyone other than themselves for that matter), or that they can carry a conversation that doesn’t have their own selfish needs at the top of their mind–IT’S NEVER GOING TO HAPPEN!

Remember who you are and what you value.

It’s easy to get sucked into a vicious cycle of crazy when you are dealing with a narcissist. You feel like you are continually having to defend yourself and prove yourself to everyone.  You may continuously be defending who you are as a mother, as a partner, and as a daughter and friend.

Why are you defending yourself? Because a part of you may be feeling that they are right, or that you need to prove your self-worth.  You don’t need to prove yourself to anyone.  You are worthy just as you are, and anyone that doesn’t see it, well, they don’t belong in your life.

You need to remember what it is you value.  Do you value peace and harmony? Do you value love and acceptance? Do you value REAL connection? If so, then put the gloves down, and understand that nobody can take your self-worth away.

If what you fight against you get more of, then getting in the rink with a narcissist will only get you more blows to the face. Narcissists need people to inflate their egos, so if you cut the supply, they will find another victim to feed on.  Take the path of least resistance, and surround yourself with people that love and support you, with people that know your worth.

If you find yourself in what feels like an impossible situation with a narcissist, please take advantage of a complimentary session with me.  I would love to see how I may help you navigate through this challenging situation.

Here is the link:  mailchi.mp/efa3cb1f474d/complimentary-session

The post How to Handle a Narcissist: My Top 3 Tips For Keeping Your Cool appeared first on Divorced Moms.

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when leaving a narcissist

5 Mistakes I Made When Leaving a Narcissist & How You Can Avoid Them

when leaving a narcissist

 

Whatever mistakes, miscalculations, or bad decisions there are to be made in leaving a narcissist, I made them.

After sixteen years with a man whom I’d built a life with, had children with, and thought I knew, I made the naïve assumption that I could predict what ending our life together and getting divorced would look like. I counted on his promises of the past to stay true in the future.

Even during the last few years of the marriage when I had to deal more with the evil Mr. Hyde than the good Dr. Jekyll, even after uncovering his double life that revealed his predatory nature for girls less than half his age, I still relied on our shared history as a couple to see me through.

My greatest error arose from my inability to wrap my head around the fact that there are people in this world who lack any sense of empathy, decency, or integrity, and who will stand back with a smirk on their face, holding a bucket of water that they have no intention of using while watching those who love them the most burn in pain.

Believing this to be an exaggeration and that no one could possibly be guilty of purposely inflicting pain on their own loved ones is the first mistake I made. Then it was a downward spiral of my shattered expectations as I learned the hard way that, yes, there are people in this world who will not only smile as they watch you fall and suffer, but will spin the story to such a point that they’ll say you deserved it.

Those people are called narcissists.

And if you’re involved with one, wanting to leave or in the process of leaving one, here are the top five mistakes to avoid. Doing so certainly won’t erase the pain of separation or divorce but will definitely lessen it if your eyes are wide open since then you won’t risk the heartbreak from bombshells that every narcissist is capable of dropping.

5 Mistakes I Made When Leaving a Narcissist

Mistake #1: Believing a narcissist will be a good person and play fair

Every phone call, every email I got from my attorney left me in a state of shock and awe upon hearing what my ex was attempting to get away with or accusing me of. Since I believed what my ex told me prior to filing for divorce, such as that he would make sure our kids and I would be taken care of financially and I wouldn’t have to worry, each realization of what he was actually up to left me reeling as if I’d been sucker-punched that landed me on the floor, of which I couldn’t get up from during the entire divorce process.

How to avoid my mistake?

See them for who they really are and not who you always wanted them to be. Drop the illusions you still carry, such as that they’ll change or they’d never hurt you. No need to be cynical, but crucial to be prepared. Hope for the best, prepare for the worst.

Mistake #2: Choosing any lawyer to represent you

Because of the fragile emotional state I was in at the time and my desperation to get the divorce over with, I did not vet my lawyer. I did not ask any questions and trusted that he would do a good job of representing me. I assumed (because he was a lawyer) that he would know the difference between fair and unfair, that he would hold my ex accountable in disclosing assets, and would advocate for me and my children to his best ability.

My lawyer always talked a big game when we were planning how to respond to my ex’s obvious skirting of the law and the abuse he still inflicted (such as cyberstalking me, stealing my identity, and hacking into my emails), then at the last minute would pull away from any previous plan and encourage me to settle.

His strategy-switching gave me whiplash. And it always coincided with running through another big retainer I’d paid, which disappeared quickly when I was being charged even if I only spoke to his legal secretary for two minutes on the phone (she called once to ask my address, which I gave and then we hung up, for which I was charged a quarter-hour of my attorney’s rate: $75).

How to avoid my mistake?

Interview attorneys. Ask them if they have experience in high-conflict divorces with abusive personalities. Ask them if they know how a narcissist operates. Go with your gut and don’t be pressured into hiring a lawyer you don’t feel completely safe with or whose methods you question. Remember, a lawyer has the ability to make or break you in a divorce. Make sure you choose wisely.

Mistake #3: Letting your emotions make decisions for you

It is a fact that women tend to look at divorce from an emotional perspective. And why wouldn’t we? When we’re heartbroken or disillusioned or escaping abuse, we can’t help but be emotional about our lives as we knew them ending, sometimes going down in a huge ball of flames. However, in general, men look at divorce from a business standpoint and remove emotion from the process (not all men, of course).

And men who are true narcissists take it even further – to them, it’s war. You’re the enemy. And therefore, you must be defeated. Because I couldn’t help but be overwhelmed by my pain, and unable to truly begin any healing process while still in the midst of the divorce, I couldn’t make those important decisions for my future since I was unable to see even the day after the next through my tears. Meanwhile, a narcissist lacking any empathy or compassion, to begin with, will exploit the weakness of another and chalk it up to the necessities of war.

How to avoid my mistake?

Given the fact that most men, especially fathers, come out far better off financially after divorce than women, who tend to see their incomes drop by over a third, it’s imperative that those emotions are put aside for the time it takes to legally separate. Cry, cuss, and rage all you want (if only I had a dollar for every f-bomb I dropped during my divorce) but leave your heart out of it and use only your mind when figuring out those details that will determine how you’ll fare long after those divorce papers are signed.

Mistake #4: Giving in and saying Uncle when you’re too tired to go on

Narcissists are like wolves (no offense to actual wolves who act only out of instinct and not out of any innate desire to persecute those who do them wrong). Their success depends on their ability to exhaust you and wear you down to the point where you stop running, lose your strength, and eventually surrender.

Because I didn’t have a good lawyer to encourage me not to waive my rights or what I was entitled to, I quickly became so drained that I lost all my nerve and gusto to stand up for myself. I gave up and gave in, and because of that I’m still experiencing the effects financially all these years later.

How to avoid my mistake?

Understand that a narcissist is trying to wear you down on purpose so that you’ll give up and give in. Trust me when I say that once you’ve recovered and regained your strength later down the line, you’ll regret it if you do throw your hands up during the divorce and give up in any way whatsoever.

Mistake #5: Underestimating how low a narcissist will go.

Check. Double check. I underestimated my ex to such an extent that I paid for it severely not only with my financial well-being but my emotional health as well since every time I was knocked to the ground by the things he would say or do, eventually I just stayed there huddled up in a ball waiting for the next blow.

How to avoid my mistake?

Think of the lowest possible thing that someone could do to another. Got it in your head? Good, because a narcissist will go lower. So brace yourself and gird those loins for this moment to come.

I wish I could tell you that today I have zero regrets for the mistakes I made when I left (escaped is more like it) and filed for divorce from a narcissist. However, since I’m still paying for those mistakes today it’s hard to not beat myself up every so often.

But then I remind myself lovingly and patiently that I didn’t know. I barely knew anything about narcissists at the time let alone what divorcing one would be like. And I didn’t know how to choose a lawyer. Nor did I feel empowered to stand up for me after so many years of being emotionally beaten down. So when I start kicking my own ass about “what I should have done instead,” I remind myself how far I’ve come despite all the difficulty and trauma of my past.

As Michelangelo said at the ripe old age of 87, “I am still learning.”

And I hope by sharing my own lessons, you are still learning too.

The post 5 Mistakes I Made When Leaving a Narcissist & How You Can Avoid Them appeared first on Divorced Moms.

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How the narcissist will use the corona virus to their advantage

How the narcissist will use the corona virus to their advantage

At the time of writing this (10th March 2020), the corona virus is on the edge of becoming a global pandemic.  We have individuals stockpiling toilet roll and hand gel. COBR (Cabinet Office Briefing Rooms) meetings here in the UK are issuing guidance almost on a weekly basis and it’s overtaken Brexit as the most talked about thing in 2020.

 

Whilst this is a serious health concern (and potentially economic one) I wanted to look at how the narcissist will use this to their advantage because, let’s face it, they love drama and this is fast becoming a Hollywood film plot.

 

Be the hero

 

Narcissists have two public persona’s – hero or victim.

 

We will look at the victim role in a moment but firstly let’s see how they can be the hero.

 

Despite the guidance currently being issued, the narcissist will be pulling the “it’s not safe for the children to come to contact” or “the children are anxious about catching the virus so they would prefer to stay here” cards.  So where do you stand on this?

 

Most parenting plans have some clause about illness but this is a unique situation.  The reality is that experts do not know enough about how it is spread therefore how best to protect the public and so the guidance is to wash your hands and reduce up close and personal interactions with the public.  

 

You are not the public.  And schools are still open.  So there should be no excuse for you not seeing your children.  Unless you have actually been confirmed as having corona virus, you are safe to interact with your children.

 

Also, children are the lowest risk because their immune systems are better than most adults, so they are safer than the majority of us!

 

Many of them will suddenly become the expert.  They know best. They will be able to tell you everything you need to know and have more insider knowledge than the CDC.  At work they may take on the role of “information distributor” which gives them power of who and what they tell. This is all in an effort to feel important.  

Be the victim

 

The covert narcissist loves nothing more than to be centre of attention and getting lots of sympathy.  The corona virus gives them the opportunity to post on Facebook about being “really worried as they feel terrible” or “can’t stop coughing, what should I do?”

 

All to illicit a wealth of “take care of yourself”/“hope you are ok” comments.  

 

At present there are 373 confirmed cases in the UK (numbers are rising by the hour) out of almost 30,000 people who have been tested.  The most at risk groups are the elderly and those with weak immune systems.  

 

I am not saying that narcissists won’t catch it but at the moment, the likelihood is, that they haven’t got it.  

 

Corona virus is scary and I have written this blog not to undermine that but rather to highlight how narcissists use and abuse such situations to their advantage.

 

What do you think?

The post How the narcissist will use the corona virus to their advantage appeared first on The Nurturing Coach.

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FEMALE NARCISSIST

CO-PARENTING WITH A NARCISSIST – 13 STRATEGIES TO HELP YOU DEAL WITH A FEMALE NARCISSIST

Truth is that you can’t co-parent with a narcissist.  But that would be a ridiculously short post so instead we are going to look at some practical steps you can take to make the fact that you have a narcissistic ex a little bit easier for you and the children.

I have chosen to write this post about female narcissists.  Mainly because it is a hugely under talked about subject but one that is a very real problem.  Almost all my clients have identified that their mothers were narcissistic and that it has had huge implications for them growing up and into adulthood.  That means that there are a lot of fathers out there attempting to co-parent with a narcissist.  

Whilst I appreciate that there are plenty of narcissistic fathers out there as well, I feel that there is already a plethora of information out there for mums (Scary Mommy and The Good Men Project have great articles on this).

Female narcissists can cause just as much damage to their children but they have the added weight of societal views about mothers and domestic abuse on their side.  Although there has been a lot of work done in the past decade about father’s rights and equal parenting, the truth is that most people still assume that mothers are the primary caregivers.  Whilst I am not wishing to write off the important role of mothers or deny that many more women than men are primary caregivers, I do think that parenting roles have changed and we now have legislation which reflects that in some measure (parental leave for new fathers for example) so it’s important we also talk about the darker side of females as well.  

There is lots spoken about toxic masculinity but toxic femininity and toxic females exist too. I think it is very dangerous to label one sex all good and the other all bad.  In fact that kind of black and white thinking is a trait of narcissism. I prefer to believe that we are all capable of good and bad acts, just as we are all capable of being victim or abuser. Without going too much into a nature nurture debate, science has long since demonstrated that our behaviours are as much, if not more, the result of our experiences than our biology.  In other words, what we have between our legs does not dictate who we are and how we behave. This is where the importance of nurture, and in particular parenting, becomes even more obvious.

But firstly, let’s get to know what we are dealing with.

Female Narcissists

Thought Catalog have written a really great piece on female narcissists so I am going to borrow their five characteristics of a female narcissist:

  1. A sadistic sense of pleasure at someone else’s pain.

Perhaps one of the most understated qualities of the female malignant narcissist is the pleasure and joy she takes in bringing down others. She enjoys making covert jabs and watching gleefully as the formerly confident victim looks crestfallen, shocked and offended. She displays a lack of empathy when the conversation turns to more serious emotional matters, engaging in shallow responses or cruel reprimands that invalidate her victim’s reality.

She is ruthless in her ability to first idealise, then devalue and discard her victims without a second thought. She cannot engage in healthy, emotionally fulfilling relationships, so she enjoys sabotaging the relationships and friendships of others for her own personal entertainment.

  1. An insatiable sense of competitiveness, due to pathological envy and the need to be the centre of attention.

They have to win.  At all costs. They will either be overt and play the hero.  Or covert and present as a fragile victim, utilising all her womanly wiles to win over sympathy in order to achieve her goal.  Usually of putting someone else down or punishing them.

As psychotherapist Christine Louis de Canonville puts it, “When it comes to envy, there is no one more envious than the narcissistic woman.”

  1. She sabotages your friendships and relationships, stirring chaos within social groups.

The female narcissist may use her affiliation with her target to gain access to resources or status, but as soon as the idealisation phase is over, the devaluation and discard follows. She then engages in rumour-mongering, smear campaigns and creates ‘triangles’ where she feeds others false or humiliating information about the victim. She may pit her friends against each other by claiming that they are gossiping about one another, when in fact, it is her falsehoods that are actually manufacturing conflict within the group. By subjecting her victims to covert and overt put-downs, she is able to then confirm her own false sense of superiority.

You are probably dealing with a female narcissist or sociopath if:

  • You notice an uncomfortable silence, a covert exchange of looks or odd energy when you enter the room. 
  • You were initially idealised, sweet-talked, admired, praised and shown off at the beginning of the relationship. You might have found yourself sharing your most intimate secrets early on, due to her disarmingly sweet and trustworthy demeanour. Later, you find your deepest secrets being spoken about with derision amongst friends or family or rumours based on vulnerabilities and fears you confided in them about. You also notice a chilling smugness when they talk down to you or as she devalues your accomplishments.
  • You bear witness to the narcissist frequently speaking ill of others in an excessively contemptuous tone, while appearing friendly and engaging with them in public. This is evidence of her duplicity and ability to deceive. An authentic person might vent about others occasionally in the event of stress or conflict, but would not engage in excessive gossip or indiscriminate character assassination. He or she would be more likely to cut ties with those they thought were toxic or address it to them directly rather than bashing them unnecessarily. Make no mistake, the way they’re speaking about others is the way they’ll eventually speak about you.
  1. She has an obsession with her appearance as well as a high level of materialism and superficiality. 

FEMALE NARCISSIST

Female narcissists fit the ‘femme fatale’ stereotype quite well. Many of them are conventionally attractive and use their sexuality to their advantage. Since females in our society are also socialised to objectify themselves, the female narcissist follows this social norm to use whatever physical assets she has to assert her power.

Hammond (2015) also observes female narcissists tend to excessively spend money. This may result in a highly materialistic female narcissist who enjoys adorning herself with the best designer clothing, indulging in luxuries at the expense of her loved ones or allowing herself to be excessively catered to by a wealthy significant other. Female narcissists can also accumulate their own wealth and use it as an indication of her superiority as well.

  1. A blatant disregard for the boundaries of intimate relationships, including her own.

In keeping with typical narcissistic behavior regardless of gender, the female narcissist is likely to have a harem of admirers – consisting of exes that never seem to go away, admirers who always seem to lurk in the background and complete strangers she ensnares into her web to evoke jealousy in her romantic partner. She frequently creates love triangles with her significant other and other males (or females, depending on her sexual orientation). She rejoices in male attention and boasts about being the object of desire. She engages in emotional and/or physical infidelity, usually without remorse and with plenty of gaslighting and deception directed at her partner, who usually dotes on her and spoils her, unaware of the extent of her disloyalty.

Delightful folks aren’t they!

If you are having to co-parent with one though, you have experienced all of this.  You understand their manipulative ways and have seen first hand how they can cut people off in a truly heartless manner. You got out of that drama. But your kids can’t do that.  And so you have to find a way to deal with them.

13 Ways To Co-Parent With A Narcissist

  • Accept that you can’t co-parent with them
    Co-parenting implies co-operation, communication and collaboration.  Not going to happen. They have to be seen as superior so they will make all decisions, withhold information and keep you shut out.  Parents evenings will be separate, and no doubt she will have told the school that she doesn’t feel safe being around you. You won’t find out if they are ill unless of course it is as an excuse to stop contact. 

We were regularly told the children were ill so couldn’t come.  In fact it happened so often I questioned whether she was poisoning them!

It also requires both parties to see the other as valid and relevant.  The narcissist does not see you as valid or relevant. You are the proverbial shit on their shoe that they want to get rid of. Your opinion doesn’t count as you don’t count. 

The narcissist went out and pierced the baby’s (and I do mean baby, they were only about a year old) despite the dad voicing that he didn’t want them to have their ears pierced because it was cruel.  Didn’t matter. It was what she wanted.

  • Be realistic with your expectations
    Your ex is not going to change.  She has developed a very sophisticated system for how she deals with people and in particular people who she deems below her or of no use to her.  She simply cuts them off. This works for her so she has no motivation to change.

    The frustration at wanting her to be different lead to arguments between me and my partner and actually, in hindsight cost us our relationship because I was so fixated on her.

    However, this does not mean that your situation cannot change.  You have full control over yourself and how you respond to what is going on.  When she attempts to bait you into an argument in front of witnesses so she can “prove” what a monster you are, you can choose whether or not to bite.  Learning how to manage your own responses takes time and awareness of what your triggers are though so you must be prepared to do the work. Once you grasp it though, your ex has no power over you which right royally pisses them off.

    Whenever she would confront me to try to intimidate me, I would always be super kind and smile.  I wanted to growl really but being able to control my own response really irritated her.  And that, in all honesty, bought me some joy.
  • Understand that everything is about control and punishment
    You are child focused.  You always have been. You didn’t want to argue in front of the kids and so you let things slide.  You let her get her own way so as not to cause distress to the children. She on the other hand used that to control you and things are no different now.  She may act like she is mother of the year but the truth is everything is about her agenda.

    Again, you need to accept that this is who she is.  No amount of reason or logic or pulling at her heart strings is going to get her to put the children first. She knows full well that controlling your access and therefore your relationship with your children is the best way to punish you for whatever wrong she believes you have committed.  When you stop wasting your energy on trying to get her to understand, you can begin to make decisions and take action on getting what you want.
  • Go direct to the source
    The ex won’t share any information with you about your children and if you ask her, you may find yourself slapped with a non-molestation order.  Who knew that wanting to find out about your own children (which you have a legal right to) was a crime? Ironic right.  They are breaking the law in preventing you from having your parental rights but you get labelled the criminal for wanting to exercise them.

    I strongly suggest you speak direct to the source (GP, school, nursery etc) and ask them to copy you in on all correspondence.  Take a copy of the court order if you have one which will show there are no restrictions in you having access to this information.  I also recommend communicating by email in the first instance so that you have a paper trail and you can’t get accused of being a bully. Most of the people involved in your children’s lives have been fed the same lines about you being controlling, aggressive, abusive and unsafe.  I have seen it happen time and time again when father’s go into the school to ask for up to date records for their children, they are stonewalled by people who have believed the lies which is frustrating and so they exert their rights a bit more forcefully and before you know it, you have another person and a professional backing up mum’s side of the story.  Email or old fashioned snail mail is the best way to avoid this.
  • Everything you say, can and will be used as evidence against you
    This is one of the hardest truths to accept but nevertheless it is true.  You are not an equal parent. The ex has successfully managed to completely distort your relationship with your children. In two ways.  Firstly, she will rule by fear and so they know who to obey and who is in charge. Just as you did in the relationship. They have seen the consequences of disagreeing with her and so they go along with everything she says.  This means they have to treat you with the same disrespect and contempt as she does. They don’t believe it but when you practice something enough times it becomes a habit. This leads to the second way she distorts the relationship which is by taking away any parental power you have to discipline your child.  So when they are being disrespectful to you, you have every right to tell them they are not allowed to talk to you that way. You wouldn’t accept it from anyone else so why from your children. What your ex then does is illicit that criticism from the children and convince them that you are abusive because of how you spoke to them.  “He used to speak to me the same way, you poor thing. What a monster he is!” It makes it almost impossible for you to parent at all.  If you want to understand more about this dynamic I recommend grabbing a copy of our free ebook The Painful Truth About Narcissistic Families.

    However, the important thing to remember is that a parent is many things.  The most important being the one person who unconditionally loves their children, no matter what they do and so even if they do disrespect you and reject you, you will always love them.  And deep down they know that. It’s part of why they know they can do it. They feel secure in your love for them. So although it is painful, try to remember that your love for them and theirs for you is strong.  Hold onto that, despite all that might happen.
  • Develop some family rules
    Another way to deal with the disrespect is to share the responsibility for how you want your relationship to look like with the children.  Family meetings and rules decided by everyone in the family can be a really good way for you to manage behaviour. All children know right from wrong.  They feel guilty when they are naughty. And being unkind to you makes them feel very uncomfortable, even if it doesn’t seem like it.

    Create a vision together of family life and ask them how they can contribute to it looking like that.  Obviously they may exhibit some resistance to this and say things like “I wish I didn’t have to come here” or “I want to be with mum” but try to persevere. Ask them why they don’t want to come here, what could you do to help make it better. 
  • Lashings of praise
    Your ex will rule with extremes – severe punishment (rage or the silent treatment) or extravagant rewards (puppies or favourite toys) which can be really powerful in getting children to do exactly what they want.  I have heard a story where a mother, the day before a child was due to go to contact with their father, bought a brand new puppy. I mean who would want to leave a new puppy? Whilst this looks amazing to the child on the surface, what all children really want is love, affection and attention and narcissists simply aren’t capable of providing any of those things.  You know that. You have felt the coldness.

    Positive reinforcement (also known as positive stokes) in the form of praise, hugs and pride is however, much more powerful.  You know the look of joy on your child’s face when you tell them they have done really well and you are proud of them, and then you tell them to ring grandma and tell her.  They are beaming! And children want more of that so giving lots of praise for all the good stuff you see not only boosts their self esteem but it also helps nurture your bond with your child.

    I do recognise that narcissists will give praise when the children do what they want and they use that to encourage them to reject you.  However, narcissists are inconsistent and so children never really know where they stand with them. What pleased them one day isn’t good enough the next.  Being consistent with your praise provides the child with the security they need.
  • Teach rather than tell
    You are your children’s role model.  They learn from all that they see, hear and watch you do.  This is probably why you ended the relationship, because you didn’t want your children to grow up thinking it was normal.  You can use this to help them develop the characteristics and skills you want them to have growing up. It will also help them to manage their own relationship with the narcissist.

    Think about what you want for your child.  Most parents want their children to be kind, happy, loved and successful.  Are you all of those things? How are you able to model them? When they misbehave, show them the behaviour you want rather than point out what they have done wrong.

    I always remember the scene in Jaws when Brody’s son is mirroring all his actions back to him.  Think about what your child is mirroring to you and vice versa.
  • Accept them for all that they are
    The reality is that your child will mirror back to you parts of your ex and this can be really hard to witness.  You may find yourself retriggered and taken back to a situation with your ex. Having her there, in your house, but in a smaller version, can be very upsetting.  And can have an impact on not only how you respond to your child but also how you feel about them. I have heard many parents honestly admit that sometimes, when their child reminds them of their ex, in that moment, they don’t like them.  That might feel really uncomfortable but it’s quite normal and natural. Your child will take after your ex. They may even look like her. No-one expects you to just forget about all the shit they put you through.

    However, it is important that you learn to accept those parts of your child.  Being aware when they remind you of your ex can help you to manage your feelings.  And remember that your child is not your ex.

    My step-daughter reminded me so much of the narcissist.  She had the same look sometimes and I felt my stomach go but just that awareness of that feeling was enough to pull me back into the room and stay with this innocent little girl sat in front of me who was so much more than her DNA.
  • Get to grips with your ex
    Something else it is important for you to model to your children, is how to deal with the ex.  You no longer live with her so you have the space to recover but your children don’t have that opportunity except when they are with you.  They are immersed in her world. The time with you is your chance to teach them the skills which got you through it. You needed resilience, self love, self control, a strong self image, support, determination and courage.  When your ex tries to push your buttons, you have an opportunity to show your children how to use self control and be strong in knowing who you are and how you behave. They will learn so much from that. They are looking to you all the time for help with this. 

    If you don’t yet feel confident in managing your ex and yourself around them, I strongly recommend getting some support to bolster up those skills.
  • Remove the drama
    Your life with the narcissist was full of drama and chaos because that is the environment the narcissist loves to create.  They can control others when they are disorientated by the chaos. Now you are away from that, you can focus on creating a peaceful environment, not just for you but for the children as well.  Children get carried away and lost in drama, it impacts their development, self esteem and academic achievement. On the opposite side of that, they thrive in a loving, nurturing, safe and calm environment. 

    Take a good look at your life and your friends and family.  Are they always caught up in the next drama or do they live a quiet and happy life?  Remove as much of the drama as you can. It will help with your recovery and create a safe haven for your children.  Like a lighthouse in the storm.
  • If you have to go to court, be prepared
    The reality is, if you have children with a narcissist you WILL have to go to court.  They want to punish you and what better way that by using the children. They will start by gatekeeping the contact, dictating the rules as to when and where you can see them.  They will begin to cut you out of all areas of their lives: school, after school clubs, your family. Finally they will manipulate the children to reject you (check out our comprehensive guide to How Parental Alienation Is Hurting Your Children to find out more about how this happens).

    It means if you want a relationship with your child, you have to go through Family Court which can perpetuate the abuse.  Every man and his dog will be drawn into the drama, claiming they saw you do x, y and z. Lies will become facts and those trained to protect children, will assist your ex is abusing them.  Narcissists love court because they have developed a false self designed to dupe and manipulate others. They love the performance in the court arena. You on the other hand just want to get on with your life and have a loving relationship with your children.  Claims of domestic abuse will appear and they will be granted legal aid so that they can use as many delay tactics as they like to keep up this charade. All in the hope of wearing you down so you just disappear. The fact they get to slander your character and destroy you in the process is a bonus to them.

    Going to court against a narcissist isn’t about the law or the facts.  It is about who is best at telling the story and being believed. Now I am not for one second suggesting you become an Oscar winning actor.  But it is important you learn how to put in your best performance. Which is why we developed our Get Court Ready course, designed to give you all the skills, tools and mindset to win this battle.
  • Recognise you may have PTSD
    A relationship with a narcissist is traumatic and stressful and when you have been exposed to it for a lengthy period of time, you can develop PTSD (and complex PTSD).  Symptoms of PTSD are:
    • regularly reliving painful memories, to the extent that you feel as if you are going through it again
    • losing all confidence in yourself and are finding it difficult to adapt to different and new situations
    • developing a chronic illness, anxiety or depression following your relationship with a narcissist
    • feeling numb and unsure of who you really are avoiding people and situations


PTSD can impact your relationship with those you love, including your children and leave you vulnerable to being retriggered by your ex.  Check out our guide to All You Need To Know About PTSD After Narcissistic Abuse.

Female narcissists are dangerous and highly abusive.  Like their male counterparts, they take no prisoners and are hell bent on destroying you.  If they have to take down others, including their own children, so be it.  As far as they are concerned the end justifies the means.  Everyone is collateral damage for them retaining their public persona.  

It’s important we speak out about this.  Men can be victims and women can be abusers.  Awareness is paramount is helping our children to recover and not repeat these cycles.

If you have experienced abuse at the hands of a narcissist and feel comfortable, please do share your thoughts. Or maybe you know someone who is a female narcissist.  Is what I have said accurate in your opinion?  Get involved.

The post CO-PARENTING WITH A NARCISSIST – 13 STRATEGIES TO HELP YOU DEAL WITH A FEMALE NARCISSIST appeared first on The Nurturing Coach.

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Divorcing a Narcissist Is Like Going To War: Here Is Your Battle Strategy

woman war narcissist

 

What fresh hell is this?

This was a recurring question I asked myself after filing for divorce from the man I had loved, devoted my life to, had children with, and who was also a diagnosed narcissist.

Looking back on my own experience, which was a brutal process that left me emotionally and financially battered, there were certain mistakes I made that could easily have been prevented had I known better. To be clear, divorcing a Narcissist is like going to war, and there are certain aspects to it that if you are aware of and wise to can make all the difference as to how you’ll come out on the other side.

Here is the advice that I wish I had had when going through it. Trust me when I say it could save yourself a lot of heartache, headaches, and potentially tens of thousands of dollars since narcissists aren’t just out to win the war, they’re out to annihilate to whatever degree they can.

For all of you preparing for that battle, or in the trenches of it, here are some tips that I would have given myself all those years ago and which would have made all the difference:

Divorcing a Narcissist Is Like Going To War: Here Is Your Battle Strategy

Find a fan-fucking-tastic attorney who is knowledgeable about abusers and personality disorders (warning: many lawyers are narcissists themselves).

Many attorneys are in this for the money and if you don’t have a good one, they will have no problem charging you for their services while the narcissist purposely creates situations that cost you money.

Make sure you and your attorney are both on the same page and never underestimate how a narcissist will lie, cheat, and steal in order to “win” the divorce. The more an attorney understands the below-the-belt tactics of a narcissist, the better she/he can protect you during the process.

Get rid of any and all illusions that your soon-to-be-ex is going to play nice or care about your well-being and best interests during the divorce or after.

This is where women can get into deep trouble while divorcing a narcissist. We want so badly to believe that our ex would never do anything on purpose to hurt us (especially if we are the mother of their children).

Unfortunately, this illusion will cost untold thousands of dollars in attorney fees because narcissists will mask their cruelty within the paperwork and hide their true intentions behind their lawyer (making it seem as if the lawyer was the one at fault).

Narcissists will do absolutely anything necessary to “win,” especially if you are the one who left them. They are punishers, and you can be sure that you’ll be the target of their punishment.

Stop being nice.

Another mistake that women often make in the divorce process is trying to be nice and playing fair. The problem is that while you are a good person and just trying to be considerate for the sake of everyone involved, a narcissist has no emotional attachment to your well-being and thus will have zero problem in taking everything he can from you (they are known to be particularly brutal during a divorce and step up their efforts to smear your name and drag you through the mud).

Though it may be difficult to step outside of your comfort zone and enter the icky world of a narcissist’s playbook, it’s imperative that you take your emotions out of the divorce process itself (the paperwork, the compromising, the wheeling and dealing) and look at it like a business deal, one that your future relies on. What’s “fair” in your eyes is not going to be even close to what a narcissist thinks is fair, because you’re relying on what’s fair to both of you, while a narcissist is only thinking what’s fair to him.

Navigate the divorce process as though your life depends on it…because it does.

One of the (many) mistakes I made when I divorced my ex was not demanding what I deserved regarding our finances. I had been a stay-at-home-and-work mom during much of our marriage (meaning that while raising our three children, I also helped manage our businesses, took care of our personal finances, went back to school for a Master’s degree, taught dance fitness classes, and built my practice as a board-certified holistic health coach) and was at my husband’s beck and call at all times.

The fact was, he could not have achieved any of our success (and likewise my success was dependent on our mutual participation in our joint ventures) without my valuable contribution. But at the time of the divorce, since I was emotionally and physically depleted after years of abuse, I neglected to stand up for my role in our financial success and therefore came out on the losing end (since I also had an attorney who neglected to stand up for my rights as co-contributor in marriage).

This is why it’s crucial to demand to receive what you’re worth and recognize that worth (such as raising your kids or helping build a business) even if you don’t have paycheck stubs to show for all your work. Again, if you concentrate on being fair and nice, you’ll end up with far less than what’s actually fair since a narcissist is anything but nice. This will require you to step up, make demands, and not be run over by the other party, which may be contrary to your very nature, but your future – especially your financial future – depends on every single decision you make during the divorce process. So give yourself one decision less to regret later on.

Don’t let the narcissist wear you down.

This is a tough one because by nature we victims of narcissistic abuse are empaths to our core. We are sensitive and caring beings. We are thoughtful, compassionate, and believe in the essential goodness of others. Add to that our fragile emotional state and vulnerability, and we are no better off than the target of an opportunistic wolf that is successful only through a tactic of relentlessly pursuing and wearing down their prey of choice.

A narcissist will doggedly harass, annoy, bother, and frustrate you in the hope that you’ll throw your hands up in the air and give them what they want. Don’t let them be successful because you will regret it later once you’ve recovered. Stick to your guns and go with your gut. And see it through to the end without sacrificing your integrity and without having to face a world of regret later on.

Never lose sight of your future (and your children’s future if you have them).

The most expensive mistake I made in my divorce, and the mistake that cost me not only tens of thousands of dollars but left me in enormous debt afterward was that I didn’t look into my future and prepare for it.

Honestly, my brain at the time felt like scrambled eggs, plus every time I saw my lawyer’s name pop up in my email or on my phone I got a stomachache that laid me up for the rest of the day, so I was not only easy prey for the wolf to devour, but afterward didn’t have the backup plan to put myself back together.

Especially if you are financially well-off (as I was) in the marriage, plan your future during the divorce as though you were planning your retirement, meaning that it’s crucial to figure out exactly what you’ll come away with after it’s final, where that will put you financially, and what your financial life will look like in the following several years (Will you be buying a new house? Will you move? Will you be able to support yourself? Are you changing jobs? Are you getting back into the workforce after a significant period of time? Are your kids’ education/savings/etc. taken care of? Will you be going to school?)

If you don’t have this foresight for yourself, you’re taking a huge gamble that everything will work out for the best. And if you’re divorcing a narcissist, that’s a gamble you don’t want to take.

I realize this list seems cynical and depressing. But trust me, you don’t want to learn the hard way like I did and which I’m still dealing with the fallout from nearly five years later.

Before I filed for divorce, my then-husband promised over and over again that he would always take care of me and our children for the rest of our lives. He swore that I would always be his family and he would make sure I was set up financially so I’d never had to worry about money again.

These promises of his only set me up for failure because I believed him, so when the shit hit the fan I could do nothing but stand there open-mouthed and dumbfounded when he launched his full-scale attack.

Believing him disarmed me, which was his intent. Had I known the destruction and lies a narcissist was capable of, I am certain I would have fared so much better because I would have at least been prepared.

Instead, this is how I actually fared: Once I filed for divorce, the letters from his attorney started, as did the lies and the cheating and the deliberate attempt to strip me of everything we had worked so hard together to create.

Flash forward to the present and my ex continues to live with his young and imported Russian girlfriend in our 10,000 square foot house that we built together. He continues to profit from the businesses we started as a couple and is reaping the rewards of an income that only increased once he got me out of the picture.

I’m not a religious person, but I’ve seen the devil and what he’s capable of.

There is no line a narcissist won’t cross.

There is no boundary a narcissist won’t breach.

There is nothing so low or unspeakable that a narcissist won’t attempt if it means casting you as the terrible one and him as the victim.

They will use their own children as collateral to get to you. And/or they will discard and/or punish their own children to get to you.

Because of this, it’s imperative that you prepare yourself for this war. You can do this with the right attorney, with the right mindset (no illusions, remember?), and with the understanding that you are facing a brutal enemy who will sweet talk you to your face while smearing your name and cheating you out of what’s yours behind your back.

And a narcissist will sleep well at night having no conscience to keep him awake.

The attorney I made the mistake of using during my divorce once said to me, “There are no winners in a divorce, Suzanna.” This is total bullshit. The divorce process is a game to a narcissist. And in my case, my ex won bigtime because he succeeded in his attempt to lie, cheat, and steal his way out of his obligations and responsibilities to me and our children.

This is why you have to stop playing nice and instead play as if your life depended on it. This doesn’t make you a terrible person. This doesn’t make you the narcissist. What it does is make you stronger, wiser, and better off at the end when you can look back on your divorce experience and know that you handled it like a boss, like the person that the narcissist always knew you were but tried to convince you otherwise.

You will come out of this experience with more than a few bumps and bruises, but at least you won’t be saddled with regret or put into a position of powerlessness that prevents you from diving into that great future waiting for you.

You’ve got this, baby. It will be one of the hardest things you’ll ever do in life, but one of the best because you are owning your power and taking back control of your life from the one who controlled it for so long. This war, this game, isn’t pretty. It isn’t easy. And it certainly isn’t something I’d wish on my worst enemy. But if you are prepared and go into it with your eyes wide open and your armor on, you’ll have a much better chance of coming out of it with your spirit and soul intact.

And the best part of all? You’ll be finally free to leave the narcissist in your dust as you drive forward into your fantastic future. And that, my love, is the biggest win of all.

The post Divorcing a Narcissist Is Like Going To War: Here Is Your Battle Strategy appeared first on Divorced Moms.

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Let’s Talk Divorce: Toxic Men: Are You a Narcissist Magnet?

Let’s Talk Divorce: Toxic Men: Are You a Narcissist Magnet?

 

Do you seem to go from one toxic relationship to another?

Have you ever asked yourself, “Is there something wrong with me that makes me a target for narcissistic, toxic men?”

The answer is maybe and no!

There is NOTHING wrong with you but, you may have qualities and traits that make you attractive to narcissistic and toxic men. Like moths to a flame, these men flutter around you waiting for an opening.

These qualities and traits give the narcissist a foot in the door and leave you wide open for their manipulations.

5 Traits that Attract Narcissistic, Toxic Men

You’re trusting

You’re trusting with everyone from the get-go. People don’t have to earn your trust, you readily give it until proven it hasn’t been earned. Narcissists use this to their advantage.

You treat others with respect and expect the same in return

It is in your nature to treat others the way you wish to be treated. The narcissist returns this treatment during the love-bombing phase. They use it to reel you in and get you so emotionally invested that once the disrespect begins, you’re in too deep to extract yourself from the relationship.

You love unconditionally

You love unconditionally

In fact, you love to a fault! You may be in love with the idea of love.

Narcissists use this against you after the love bombing period. They know that no matter what they deprive you of in the relationship, you’re going to continue to love them.

You’re empathetic and compassionate

These traits make it easy for you to make excuses for the narc’s bad behavior. You make excuses for the narc based on his “victim” stories. He was molested by a priest, he was emotionally abandoned by his mother. And on and on. Being empathetic, instead of holding him accountable for bad behavior, you hold his mother or that priest accountable. You believe that love, your love, will heal those old wounds and he’ll become the person he was during the love-bombing phase again.

You have trouble setting boundaries

You fear setting boundaries because you fear abandonment. With family, friends, coworkers and romantic relationships, you allow people to take advantage of you. Due to this, you are easily manipulated by the narcissist, toxic man.

You know how you should be treated, you just fear vocalizing it.

The post Let’s Talk Divorce: Toxic Men: Are You a Narcissist Magnet? appeared first on Divorced Moms.

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Co-Parenting With a Narcissist Turned Me Into My Daughter’s Hero

co-parenting with a narcissist

 

Last Sunday I was in the kitchen working on meal prep for the week. I was slicing melons, plucking grapes from vines, and baking chicken breasts when an unexpected thing happened.

It was just my daughters and I home for the afternoon and they had both gravitated to the kitchen (probably the scent of chili-lime flavored chicken wafting through the house had something to do with it.) Before long we had found ourselves deep in conversation; about what, I couldn’t say now, but somehow we came to this:

My sixteen year old looked at me and said, “Mom, you are the strongest person I know. I look at everything you have gone through, picking yourself up after the divorce, being a single mom to two daughters, having to work hard to support us…  You showed us not to settle for less than what we deserve. I don’t think you realize how much we look up to you.”

Naturally, I teared up and if my soul could sigh, it would have done so at that exact moment.

We’ve been through a lot in these seven years post-divorce. There have been countless arguments, tears, hugs, and laughter. The girls are now twenty and sixteen, and while there was no DIY manual on how to cope when the man in your life walks out, somehow we have gotten here: blubbering in the kitchen over how proud we are to have survived together.

It’s been such a rough road for us three. The road started out pretty normal, freshly tarred to make for smooth sailing. Eventually, that perfect road experienced some pretty major frost heaves, frost heaves that popped us right out of the minivan of life and dragged us behind it for a spell; resulting in three pretty severe cases of road rash. Road rash hurts, both real and metaphorical. It hurts real bad.

One day I got tired of the frost heaves causing so much pain, so I put the brakes on, dusted everyone off, slapped some bag balm on the road rash and turned that minivan down a new road. This road had potholes, too, no road is perfect, but we were wiser this time, and we had the scars from the road rash to remind us to slow down and avoid the bad road if we could. So eventually we learned to see the signs of a road in need of repair and we began to detour whenever possible.

It seems like for the past year the road has been a bit more travel-friendly, and for that I am thankful.

There was a time when I didn’t know if my relationship with my girls would ever return to what it was before. Were the scars from the road rash just too much to fully recover from? It felt like it at times. Times when I couldn’t say or do anything right. Times when they judged me and resented me for choices I made and for things that were out of my control. I’m not talking about normal everyday adolescent squabbles with my children, it was something far beyond that.

I’ve read a lot of books, articles, and blogs about life after divorce, but I’m not sure any of us dare to truly delve into the ugly truth of single parenting. Even now, I only dance around the subject matter of co-parenting with a narcissist. The truth was knowing that anything that was said and done at my house could and would be used against me by the other side. For years I felt like I was being held captive in my own life and that my world could come crashing down at any moment due to crafty manipulation techniques.

Even when the efforts failed I felt the effects from my children. They would treat me differently until finally things would settle down and we could get back to our normal. It wasn’t their fault, they were children, and it certainly wasn’t fair for them to be caught in the middle of someone else’s sick games.

I struggled during those years. I struggled with my reality vs. the reality I longed for. I wanted simplicity and an honest life with my children. I resisted and pushed back when drama and lies crept in from the other side.

It wasn’t easy having a foot in two separate worlds; the world I had lived in with my children and the world I wanted to live in with them.

I kept on. I stayed true to my course. There were days when I wanted to scream and yell, and there were days when I did exactly that.

They said it will get better. They said, “Keep doing what you are doing because you are doing it right.”

And after looking into the eyes of my sixteen-year-old when she said, “Mom, you are my hero. I wouldn’t be who I am today if it wasn’t for everything we went through.”

I finally believe they were right.

For all the struggling mamas out there acting as mom and dad while trying not to lose yourself in the process, it does get better. There is hope for a happier, more peaceful existence with your kids, just don’t give up. Even more importantly, don’t give in to the dark side. Listen to your heart, trust your gut, and love those little cherubs of yours with everything you have.

I have no false pretenses on perfectly paved roads of the future, in fact, I am well aware that at any moment I could get bucked right out of the minivan again and suffer a fresh case of the rash. The knowledge that at any moment we are one incident away from turmoil, and I could be cast back into the role of the villain always resides in the back of my mind. But the older they get, the wiser they are becoming and I keep praying that they always see truth above everything else.

At the end of the day, at least now I know with certainty that underneath all of the muck and mire resides a strong foundation of truth and integrity that we built together. And as for that road rash… it gave us some pretty beautiful scars that only the three of us can see. It taught us more than I can even begin to quantify with words.

As we stood around the kitchen that afternoon we shared memories of one horrible summer that we all now agree has become one of our favorite summers together. I never would have guessed all those years ago that some of the worst days of our lives could have bonded my girls and I so closely that we could turn it into such a positive and sacred memory.

Never underestimate the power of the road rash and the beauty of its scars.

The post Co-Parenting With a Narcissist Turned Me Into My Daughter’s Hero appeared first on Divorced Moms.

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Life With The Narcissist Was Never Meant To Be

Life With The Narcissist Was Never Meant To Be

 

Ending a relationship with the narcissist can be devastating for your heart and soul.

I completely understand, because once upon a time, I felt this pain so significantly that I thought I would never recover.

The reason was that I was completely convinced that this relationship was meant to be – it wasn’t! Today, I know a completely different truth.

A truth, that ended up being even more gratifying, fulfilling and incredibly revolutionary for me.

I hope that the information that I share with you, will help set you free into relief, and your power and glory as well.

 

 

Video Transcript

I know that being with the narcissist can feel so right!

And, the struggle in these relationships is so gut-wrenching and confusing, because this person feels “so meant to be”.

Yet, I promise you that this is NOT the truth.

And, rather than this being such a devastation and disappointment to you, it is my deepest wish that today’s Thriver TV episode brings you incredible relief and freedom instead.

As well as the power to be able to let go and move on into your True Self and Life.

Okay, so before I get into this really important information, I’d like to thank all of you who have subscribed to my channel for supporting the Thriver mission. And remind you, if you haven’t yet done so, please do. Also, make sure that if you like this video that you give it a thumbs up.

Okay, so now let’s get started on this episode.

 

Why Does the Bond Feel “So Right”?

In many ways, the connection in the journey with the narcissist was meant to be (I’ll explain more about this later) … but this doesn’t mean that this person was supposed to LAST in your life.

It also doesn’t mean that you were meant to succeed in creating a healthy, happy and safe relationship with this person.

Relationships are such a powerful contextual field. The greatest lessons, evolution, and healing that we will ever experience, absolutely happens with people who are impactful in our life.

This may be a parent, or some other significant family member, such as a sibling who we would dearly love to have a beautiful relationship with.

Narcissists come in many shapes and forms, including intimate partners and spouses, as well as impactful people like business partners or bosses or even friends.

Or the narcissist may be someone who intimidates us, such as an authority figure or even a neighbour.

One thing is for sure, this person is not someone who we can easily dismiss, walk away from or just “get over”. Generally, narcissistic abuse comes with lots of entanglement, pain and heartbreak as well as the fear of repercussions.

Often, there is a lot on the line.

And, it is incredibly normal, when entangled with a narcissist to have the feeling that this is “meant to be”. That somehow you are meant to make things right and fix this relationship.

Or, your life will be impossible if you somehow don’t sort this out. It may be because you feel there is so much to lose if you don’t; all the things that you have worked so hard for all of your life, your property, resources, children, or the hope of love that you always believed that you could or should be receiving from this person.

Your connection to the narcissist may be fraught with necessity, obligation and responsibility. Or just downright fear.

But does this mean that the issues are meant to be brought to reconciliation with this person?

Or, really, is this journey forcing us to be released from our fears and limitations and truly anchor into honouring our own soul, regardless of what somebody else is or isn’t doing?

 

Your Inner Truth

We have been taught to assess our life logically. To look at our goals and what it is that we wish to achieve and then generate that life with the available resources that we have in life.

Maybe that is what you have been trying to do with the narcissist.

You may be trying to make this person act sanely, sensibly and decently. You may be lecturing and prescribing to them and trying to assert boundaries and even hold this person accountable.

Yet the twists and lies continue to abuse you and break you and your life apart.

When this happens, your Inner Being starts to disintegrate.

Which means that emotionally you become a wreck. You start to experience anxiety and depression, and even panic attacks triggered by not knowing what is going to happen next.

You are also battling the fact that somehow, it’s all spun back on you and made out to be your fault.

And, like myself (as well as all of us) realising the insanity of trying to make sense of this, whilst trying to explain fundamental basic human decency to someone who refuses to “get it”, is mental.

It’s also intensely emotional. We get sick. We break down. And then everything in our life that matters, as well as the people we love, start to break down as well.

Is it worth it?

Of course, it isn’t, and deep down, if we are honest with ourselves, we know this. Yet, it can feel impossible to let go of the belief that somehow we are meant to work this out, and/or “this is meant to be”.

I really want you to know, as compelling as this feels, it is not the truth. Your mind would love it to be the truth because this is the version of life that you’ve decided needs to be fulfilled, yet your Inner Being is screaming at you to wake up to just how traumatic and wrong this is.

I promise you that the truth of your life is coming from your emotional Inner Being. That is the part of you that is your God Self. It is your truth. Your truth is not what your mind would like it to be. And, until you start the self-partnering journey of healing from the inside out, as a Thriver Recovery, you may not have realised, yet, how true this is.

I know I certainly didn’t.

 

Are Other People Supposed to Grant us Safety, Love and Happiness?

I was determined and incredibly focused on fixing my marriage and making what I had convinced myself was “meant to be”, work.

I believed he was meant to love me. I believed he was meant to get well, treat me well, and be the man who I had decided was needed for me to be safe, loved and happy.

I was wrong.

I was horribly wrong.

And I hadn’t realised until my Thriver Recovery, that this had been a false premise that I have been hanging onto my entire life – that certain people needed to be a certain way, and treat me in a certain fashion in order for me to be happy and whole.

I hadn’t realised that this had caused me to hand my power away, so many times, in many areas of my life. In business, friendships, family relationships and even with authorities, as well as drastically in love relationships.

I had been defining myself from people outside of myself, rather than truly knowing how to be self-definitive and self-generative within myself.

And the reason, I hadn’t as yet “got it” was because my relationship with me wasn’t as yet healed.

As soon as I started to turn inwards to attend to the loving and the healing of my screaming, traumatised Inner Being back to wholeness, the entire truth started to drop into place.

As well as the reclaiming of myself, whereby I knew that he wasn’t meant to be my saviour. He was my messenger, forcing me to become my own healer and saviour.

Then, finally, everything in my life started to become healthy, safe and happy.

 

Your True Life After Narcissistic Abuse

I really want to share with you what your True Life looks like, and what is possible if you detach from the narcissist, turn inwards and start doing your Thriver Healing.

It is a life where you are connected to yourself deciding who and what is a match for you from the truth of your Inner Being, rather than looking out at people regarding who you should be or how you should behave.

You are able to be authentic, truthful and firmly grounded in what is or isn’t right for you.

Plus, you can back yourself enough to have the courage to speak up, have the difficult conversations, ask for clarification where necessary, and risk people not agreeing with you, or liking you as your authentic self.

Then, no more are you rolling around with disrespectful, painful and abusive people trying to get them to love and accept you or provide you with security or survival.

You can wake up every day of your life feeling safe in your body, safe in life and excited about being able to healthily make your choices, as well as have the inner solidness and integrity to know how to disengage, let go and walk away from those and that which doesn’t match your truth and limits.

The beauty of your True Self and Life is that it is no longer precariously poised on what a certain person is or isn’t doing, regardless of who this person is and “who” they are supposed to be in your life.

Rather it is being generated from WHO you are Being.

What you will discover, as a result of having a congruent, authentic and honest relationship with yourself, is that your life itself starts becoming congruent and aligned with the truth of you.

Your relationships up-level, they become anchored in honesty, integrity and care.

Your missions, purpose and opportunities increase.

Synchronicity starts to partner with you authentically. You’re in the right place at the right time and open to new possibilities.

You are so much more able to easily avoid the wrong turns in your life because no longer are you trying to turn crumbs into cookies.

You have expanded and opened up to a plenty and an abundance mindset, rather than a poverty and limited consciousness.

I can’t tell you the release you will experience when you will finally burst free into this trajectory that is your True Self.

I want you to know, with all my heart, that it was my recovery from narcissistic abuse that delivered me to that place.

Without having had been brought to my knees, and forced to release my traumas, limitations and previous abuse patterns, I would never have arrived there.

Because up until then, I had never had to face and heal these things.

This is what Thriver Recovery is all about; it is about meeting and releasing the trauma that has been horrifically triggered within you, to finally go free from it.

That is when you will know how “meant to be” this journey is.

If you understand what I’m sharing with you in this episode, I want you to pause this video and write “The truth of why this was meant to be, has set me free!”

 

In Conclusion

I absolutely validate that you are initially going to be feeling the incredible pain, heartbreak and even intense addiction to the narcissist.

And, I want you to know that these hideous, all-consuming feelings are so common with narcissistic abuse.

But, I also want you to know that there is a true healing solution for them that will grant you relief and clarity and power very quickly if you dedicate yourself to your Thriver Recovery.

In my free webinar, I can connect you to exactly how to achieve this, as well as allow you to experience a Quanta Freedom Healing directly in your body, to understand how this profound healing system can work for you.

I invite you to connect to my free webinar by clicking this link.

So, I really hope that this episode has explained to you what is really meant to be as a result of your connection to the narcissist.

Namely, you finally coming home to yourself.

And I can’t wait to help you get on this trajectory.

Okay, so, if you liked this video, please hit the like button and also share it with the people who you know need this information.

Also, if you want to see more of my new episodes please subscribe so that you will be notified as soon as each new one is released.

And, as always, I look forward to answering your comments and questions below.

 

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6 Warning Signs You Are Dating a Narcissist

6 Warning Signs You Are Dating a Narcissist

Narcissist Man.jpg

Could you be dating a narcissist and not even know it?

After starting to date again after divorce, I often found myself drawn toward highly successful professional men who are competitive in business and strongly determined to continue to build their own financial empire.  Their determined, confident attitudes and visible business successes appealed to my strong desires for security and stability.

A recent first date I went on was with this type of guy. My date with a dentist turned into a three-hour marathon of misery for me when he insisted that we sit in a back booth that he had reserved in advance with the hostess by visiting the restaurant the night before and then he told our server that he would leave an extra-generous tip if she served our meals at a very leisurely pace.

Right away he launched into a one-sided brag fest about how he got elected president of his college fraternity and why he easily scored highest in his graduating class on the dental board exam. He then dropped names of all the famous people he knows who live in our city and then went on to reveal the names of all the famous people his dad knows too.  By the time the pasta finally arrived, I wanted to collapse into my plate from sheer boredom and exhaustion.

After that mind-numbing experience, I ran to my car and swore off dating for several months.

Unfortunately, this was just one more very disillusioning date with a narcissistic man. I had already experienced many others.

Several times I dated a man exclusively for three to six months, expecting things to become more serious overtime, only to have them abruptly break things off with very little explanation or distance themselves with vague excuses about why they couldn’t continue to spend time with me.

After spending many frustrating weeks trying to figure out how to get each of these men I had dated exclusively to connect with me on an emotional level so that our relationship could continue to grow, I finally discovered that there was a big disconnect between the type of relationship I was expecting to unfold and what these narcissistic men were able to contribute in terms of intimacy, emotional connection, and respectful two-way communications.

I discovered that I was living on crumbs and pretending it was a whole nutritious meal.

Are you Dating a Narcissist? Here are 6 Warning Signs:

1. He is pre-occupied with how things around him appear and how he is perceived by others. He aggressively pursues financial success and is not content with what he already has acquired or achieved. He has a strong craving for admiration, praise and his home, car, clothes and high status are a direct measurement of how successful he appears to others.

2. He exploits or takes advantage of others to get what he wants. Narcissists are highly skilled at using others’ talents; taking advantage of their desire to avoid conflicts and their good-natured helpfulness as a means to an end to achieve their own goals.

3. He does not appreciate or even see your unique abilities and natural gifts. Highly self-absorbed, narcissists are so driven by how they can use others to benefit themselves that your own individual strengths, abilities and achievements are often ignored or dismissed as inconsequential.

4. He resents authority and despises correction or being told what to do. He is reluctant to accept any blame or criticism and strongly prefers to be in control of things and those around him at all times. Having his faults pointed out to him or even having to admit that he made a mistake can set him off into a fit of rage.

5. Petty arguments often erupt into power struggles. The narcissistic man thrives on being right so disputes are rarely resolved. Mediation and counseling rarely helps to improve communications with a narcissist because this type of person sees themselves as under attack and can’t stand for their actions to be subject to the opinions of others and held up to the light.

6. He disregards your healthy needs for attention and affection. Since narcissistic men often lack empathy and the self-examination necessary to create an intimate relationship, you’ll often find yourself running on empty. Attempts to get more affection from him often leads to him creating a secret life to run to and evading your questions about what is really happening or not happening in your relationship.

If you recognize these signs in a man that you are dating, it is helpful to remember that narcissists have very rigid expectations (especially for themselves) and so this type of man rarely changes his ways.

Understanding or experiencing intimacy and love within the context of a balanced and healthy relationship is not on the agenda of a narcissist.

Unfortunately, many times we keep trying to change a narcissistic man into who we’d like them to become or the reverse- trying to twist ourselves like pretzels into a perfect version of what he wants instead of cutting our losses. Recognizing the traits of a narcissistic man and realizing how deeply rooted they are is critical so that we can begin taking back control of our own life and start to move forward in a healthier direction.

The post 6 Warning Signs You Are Dating a Narcissist appeared first on Divorced Moms.

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eaving a narcissist

Leaving a Narcissist? Here’s How

eaving a narcissist

 

Leaving a narcissist isn’t easy. You make up your mind, you’re going to do it this time and then bam, you find yourself vulnerable to his charms and manipulations. Unless he wants you to go, the narcissist isn’t going to allow you to go without a fight.

Both mentally and physically, he will try to remain in your life and this is why you need all the tricks and tips available to prevent him from working his way back into your life.

If you’re trying the leave a relationship or marriage with a narcissistic partner you need the information below.

Leaving a Narcissist? Here’s How

Understanding The Narcissist’s World

A narcissist truly believes that he is the center of the universe; that he comes first and is always right. Narcissists are somewhat emotionally barren and lack the empathy to even consider the impact their actions may have on those around them.

They are often deeply unhappy individuals (regardless of their exterior appearance) and they like nothing more than to project these ill feelings onto others in the hope of driving conflict – the veritable catnip for narcissists.

A narcissist is a master of fakery – he can turn on the charm at the drop of a hat and compound lie upon lie in a bid to get his own way and stroke his own ego. He seeks out a person’s emotional triggers early on and uses them against them once the honeymoon period is over.

A narcissist is a user – he gives very little in the way of genuine warmth to a partner but insists upon a constant stream of it flowing to him. He requires compliments and kind words on a regular basis and will seek to punish a partner if these are not forthcoming.

He sees relationships purely as sources of supply; a supply of attention and love even though he is incapable of returning the latter.

When the partner tries to break away from the narcissist, he doesn’t see them as a loss, per se, but rather their withholding of this supply. He is confronted with a wounded ego and anxiety as to how he will meet his supply requirements. This is one good reason why he is so likely to try and regain the lost relationship – not because he loves or cares for the partner, but because he cannot go without attention and affection.

Understanding The Role A Narcissist Plays In Separation

When you attempt to leave a narcissistic partner, you will face a barrage of mental manipulation, and unless you are able to recognize it for what it is, you will suffer greatly because of it.

A narcissist will attempt to lay all of the blame at your door; he will spin his own versions of past events and seek to convince you of them. He will deceive, trick, and argue in such a way as to not only convince himself that he is right but also make you doubt yourself and the circumstances of your separation.

You must remain mentally strong and maintain your grasp on reality at all times. Don’t let his lies paint a different picture to the one you actually experienced during your relationship.

A narcissist will seek to make you feel guilty and worthless in an attempt to make himself feel better. As hard is can be to resist these attempts, you should try to see through his eyes to understand why he is saying all of these hurtful things. This should help you to reduce their effects on you.

Set Firm, Meaningful Boundaries

When you want to leave a narcissistic partner behind, you will almost certainly find resistance on their part. As I said above, they see your actions as a threat to their ego and an end to the supply you provided them, and they will likely try to worm their way back into your life somehow.

They will turn on their act once again and this may make it appear as if they have truly changed, that they are repentant and that you have shown them the way. None of these things are true; the charm they put on and the pity they try to extract from you are just more mind games to mask what’s real and underneath.

To combat this, you need to set concrete boundaries that prevent the narcissist from being able to play these games in the first place.

You may still be in love with him, which makes it all the more difficult, but by putting some distance between you – even if metaphorically – you will give your mind time to regain clarity and see things as they truly are.

Ideally, you will not take his calls, see him, or have contact with him full stop, but if you feel in some way that you owe it to him (which you shouldn’t), or you have to maintain contact for other reasons (such as children), then do it on your terms. Set the time, place and length of the contact and tell him that it will end at the first sight of belittling behavior, raised voices, or derogatory remarks.

Better yet, if you have to see them for any reason (say you share custody of a child), then try using the Gray Rock Method to interact with them in a way that will reduce the risk of you getting hurt again.

Try To Build A Strong Support System

Escaping the clutches of a narcissist is never easy and there will be times when you feel like giving in and returning to him. This is why it is essential that you find people who can give you the strength you need to overcome the hard times.

Unfortunately, as part of his mind games, the narcissist may well have already contacted mutual friends and family to convince them of your wrongdoing and even if he has not, many people will struggle to identify with the person you describe – remember, he may well have put on the charm around others.

But wherever you find them – and it might be that you have to seek out people who have been in your situation and understand what you are going through – be sure to keep them at hand for the inevitable moments of self-doubt and surrender.

Let them know the boundaries you have set and tell them to call you out should you ever let these boundaries drift or fall down. You may find that you have altercations with your supporters, but let it be known to them in advance that you appreciate all that they are doing for you.

Recognize Your Own Limiting Beliefs

Having a narcissist for a partner can well and truly mess with your head and the result is likely to be a number of limiting beliefs that you have about yourself, them, and your relationship.

For instance, you might believe that:

  • they truly love you
  • your love for them can prevail given time
  • you are to blame for the ending of the relationship
  • they bring you happiness that you will not find elsewhere
  • things can go back to how they were in the beginning
  • they have seen the errors in their ways once and for all
  • you can fix them and that it is your duty to stay and help
  • they feel the same way that you do

Not one of these things is true. They are incapable of love, meaning your love can never prevail. You are not to blame and you can find greater happiness elsewhere. Things can never go back to how they were and stay that way because they have not seen any error in their ways. You cannot fix them and nor is it your responsibility, and they most certainly don’t feel the same way as you.

Practice Self Kindness And Understanding

An essential component of saying goodbye to the narcissist in your life is to be kind to yourself in the process.

During your time together, he will have broken you down repeatedly and left you doubting yourself, your beauty (inner and outer), and your ability to function without him.

Just know that you are deserving of more. You have a strength that has been hidden in the shadows and all you have to do is learn to summon it again.

It will take time; more time than it ever takes to move on from the breakdown of a healthy relationship. You will have to give yourself some leeway and know that hard times are ahead and that they will test your resolve.

But kindness to oneself is a powerful thing; the more you practice it, the more it takes hold within your heart. You should be acting out of kindness towards yourself each and every day until it becomes natural once more.

Rebuild Your Self Image

The narcissist in your relationship will have tried to shatter the image you hold of yourself and remake it as he sees fit for his purpose. So when you leave him behind, what you see in the mirror could be very different from that which you saw before you met him.

A part of your healing will be to rediscover what it means to be you; there will be some additional scars inflicted by your ex-partner, but your inner self will eventually shine again.

The post Leaving a Narcissist? Here’s How appeared first on Divorced Moms.

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