A previous article of mine had some choice words added here and there, by the facebook page After Narcissistic Abuse, there is Light, Life and Love. The added words reflect a more evolved understanding of how fake the relationship with a narcissist is, something that is so hard to fathom shortly after a break-up. The relationship with the narcissist beyond the mere deception and immature nature of the narcissist, that initially drew you into these types of pseudo relationships and kept you strung along, includes an overwhelming amount of deliberate emotional abuse. The importance of No Contact after break-up to avoid being sucked in again by the crazy making, is now noted in the new closing paragraph.
The relationship with a narcissist is always complicated, torturous and abusive. A few red flags have been apparent from the beginning, but you tend to overlook them until some time passes and you get to know them better – BUT YOU WILL NEVER KNOW WHAT IS “REAL” because there is nothing real about them except that they HAVE to secure some sort of pseudo relationship with a source to supply them with all of their needs. They have to be admired at every level so that they don’t have to deal with the reality of who and what they are – abusers..
What you tend to find on an ongoing basis is the narcissist wants to keep you guessing, and insecure about really knowing them on an intimate basis. They are very limited with their communication skills, but that is not to say you don’t find yourself chatting away with them, they just aren’t deep in respect to themselves and their past life because it is littered with abuse. If you could see through their façade in the beginning, all of those great conversations with them were part of their grand manipulation where they were charming the pants right off of us to be their next target to feed them. They were mirroring all of our attributes, liking them and you found yourself having SO MUCH in common with them – it was a match made in heaven. It can be compared to being on facebook and the Narcissist’s true self is hidden behind that computer screen and where the Narcissist is “liking” everything that you say or do. Unfortunately you can’t see what is behind the screen and they may be “liking” and developing many types of these “pseudo” relationships. You could plug into the old saying here, “variety is the spice of life” as it concerns a Narcissist. They always have a huge fortress built up around them to keep their darkness well hidden from the real world.
Having that honest discussion with a Narcissist is virtually impossible as is their intention. Most of your time is just spent entertaining them, and while they are with you, your time with them is intense: they literally shower you with attention, charm and passion. Everything seems so idyllic, and you are smitten with them. Still, they hardly mention you when they are around their friends, as if you aren't really part of their lives. In their talk about the future, you are conspicuously absent. Or they may have a lot of plans that they tell you about, but none of them ever materialize unless you initiate them as well as pay for them. You figure that the relationship is relatively new, and that with time the relationship will grow. By reassuring yourself this way, you continue to live in the hope and promise of an exciting relationship. Nothing ever changes because they are elusive creatures busy with entertaining their own needs everywhere they can find supply and you are kept at arms length.
Because narcissists are master manipulators and great at creating an illusion, you haven't quite caught on to the many inconsistencies of their behavior. You simply have that gut feeling that something is terribly off. Once you are sufficiently attached to your narcissist and you want to move the relationship forward, you'll find them actually pushing you away. Thus starts the rollercoaster ride of the hot/cold phase in the relationship further confounding your experience. That's because intimacy scares a narcissist, as it makes them feel controlled and needy. When they sense that you are connected to them intimately, they start to engage in all kinds of cruel behaviors that are meant to hurt you, of which the silent treatment or disappearing acts and the triangulation are the most devastating – they lavish in controlling us and inflicting pain. Gradually you realize you are consistently being devalued and you feel on edge most of the time. The mind games actively undermine the relationship and the development of any kind of trust OR the sense of safety and security in the relationship. You are stripped of your dignity and feel like you are in a constant state of confusion always having to defend yourself. The narcissist even appears amused at what they are doing to you. This is the real person behind the mask.
What is beneath this façade is a huge betrayal, one in which they are actively living out a lifestyle that may include other relationships, constant emotional and/or physical affairs with other supply or many other secret lives. This is hard to fathom when they are still actively engaged in their pseudo relationship with you but they are expert liars and manipulators and they have many tools to convince you that your thinking is absurd and you are jealous, insecure and or you have deep issues. They lavish in their power and can often extend the abuse to include your friends, family and even co-workers in a manner to make you out to be mentally ill, a liar, jealous – most anything to triangulate the very people you love in your life or associate with. Silencing, isolating and betrayal keeps you imprisoned and so far out of touch with the reality or the truth about them. When that door to freedom does finally swing open for you what lies before you is more abuse because they have often completely destroyed your integrity and character to everyone and everything that meant something to you.
Narcissists always seem to have an excuse for why they can't give themselves fully to the relationship. They may say they have hardships they have to resolve first, but you find they never resolve them. Often you see narcissists being better at long distance relationships, because a real relationship is perceived as an inconvenience to them. This is not to say that they don’t marry or move in with you because it may be their only course of action to keep you as supply, or use you as part of their “grand illusion” – all of which is their facade created to hide their abusive ways and perverse lifestyle. They are charmers but full of poison that they are ready to make you ingest it when they can.
All along they've been rather secretive about their past relationship history because any connection with their last target would reveal a pattern of the same abuse. As your relationship continues into a long term relationship, narcissists will start to sabotage the relationship. This is meant to intentionally heighten the insecurity you feel about the relationship with them. You find yourself at the receiving end of one of their rage arguments, or accused of not loving them, or even having an affair – none of which has an ounce of truth. Narcissists like that sense of power and control it gives them. Instead of the relationship moving forward, it seems to actually be sliding backward. You will find yourself to be the only one making an effort to keep the relationship going. At this point you are starting to see that your relationship is only a side note to them, leaving you in perpetual waiting mode and you are blamed for this.
The narcissist only uses you as an accessory or supply, and you realize the relationship is a one-way street. You were only the next target they chose to extort. You are only what can be defined as a “convenience” to them like an object. They expect you to be there for them 100% to the point where you've become isolated from family and friends. The narcissist will exploit you in every way, but they are never there for you. Incredibly, the narcissist will start to become more and more secretive about their plans as time goes on. By now, it's become confusing why you haven't been able to bond deeper, as would be the case in a healthy relationship. The relationship feels extremely shallow and superficial. With the narcissist being so wrapped up with themselves, and there simply is no room for you in their life. You repeatedly witness the narcissist callously sabotaging the relationship, and making it seem like a chore or inconvenience to them. They demean and debase you more and more chipping away at your self-esteem in a manner to make you more and more vulnerable for the final attack.
Then, you learn that narcissists cannot move beyond the infatuation phase, which in reality was just a cunningly executed ploy to lure you into their lives. Incredibly, it dawns on you that they are shallow and superficial and incapable of real love and healthy bonding. They are pathological liars that having been manipulating your goodness and well-being and betraying you behind your back every opportunity they get. The hardest part for you to admit is that it all was just a hideous game to them. The narcissist kept you around and strung you along under false pretenses, while investing the bare minimum and taking everything they could get from you. The entire relationship was a lie filled with a lot of deception and betrayal on their part. The narcissist that you were in a relationship with, never had the intention of moving the relationship forward and never will, because they are incapable of doing so even if you married them.
Ending the relationship with them will yield a great deal of damage to your life. A narcissist lives in such a controlled environment of denial and they protect themselves with the ferocity of a shark attacking prey and they will bring in reinforcement to fight their battle. They can jump into another relationship in a heartbeat because they have created many options to escape and they start their extortion, exploitation and cycle of abuse with the new supply, while causing you as much damage as they can. They will still be there trying to rub your face in their “moving on,” but moving onto what – another opportunity to abuse a “new” target. NEVER did we ever have a chance to be a true part in their life, we were and will always be supply and that is all! NO CONTACT – change your phone numbers, lock your doors and protect yourself at all costs from letting this predator back. This is your time now to return to a real life, one in which you realize your strengths and re-learn how to love yourself. Abuse doesn’t come without its damage as we all know. BUT there is goodness out there and we must be vigilant in the process of our recovery and find our place in a world that truly is defined by love, empathy and compassion.