Forgive and Forget and Fuck Yourself Over and Over Again

This is a post inspired by those very negative muses known as Narcissists.

I keep referring to the gift in the curse of being in a relationship with a Narcissist. What exactly is the gift in the curse?

Simply put – You take something very negative and find the positive in it. Something which will inspire the fire within you and will encourage you to burn brightly as yourself. All of you. Let yourself shine! Because all negatives have a positive side of equal strength. You just have to dig through the shit to find the treasure buried within it.

Overly optimistic? You have to be when life keeps challenging you by throwing Narcissists at you like speed bumps in the road of your life. I wish life would give me lemons! I like lemons and have spent a lot of money buying them! Narcissists on the other hand… well I have more than I need of them in my life and decided to make lemonade out of them. I like lemonade.

If you attract Narcissists the way I do, you might as well make use out of them, give them a positive purpose.

If you’ve ever been abused, by a Narcissist or anyone else, then you know that one of the first things which an abuser does after they’ve finished that particular incident of abuse is to cover their tracks. They often resort to the regret-filled apology tactic – I’m very sorry, I don’t know what came over me, I will never do this again, please forgive me.

In that moment they need you more than you need them. You have all of the power in the relationship, what are you going to do with it?

They need you to forgive them. So they can move on and eventually do the same thing again. You forgave them, thus you forgot that it ever happened, so… if they do it again, it’s your fault.

Don’t even bother trying to understand what the fuck is going on in their mind. You can try, but the chances of your being able to understand it are slim, and you’re wasting precious time on them which you should be giving to yourself. This is your life you’re living. You’ll never get them, just as they will never get you, and how hurt you are by everything they say and do. They won’t even try, they’ll pretend to try for about five seconds then tell you you’re too crazy, damaged and fucked up for them to understand, but at least they now know why they are right to treat you the way they do. You asked for it, no, you made them do it to you. They’re the victim, not you.

And that’s just it. Your abuser sees themselves as the real victim. You’re faking it, you’re the real abuser.

Every time you try to make them see it the other way around, you confirm to them that their version of themselves, of you and of reality is the true version. They are so wrapped up in a big comforter of self-pity and how wounded they are that that is all they will ever see. They live in the land of poor poor me, and there is no room for you there.

What you do need to spend time understanding is what the fuck is going on in your mind. You know what it is. You’re a good person, who is trying to be a better person every day in every way. So you practice the art of being human, and relating to the human side of other humans. One of the skills involved in this is to be understanding, compassionate, and to give that which you wish to receive.

We all make mistakes, say and do things which we don’t mean. We all can be abusive to others, but most of us don’t mean to be. A moment of pain surges up, takes over and we lash out, allowing our pain to speak and act. We regret it and are genuinely sorry, and we hope whoever we hurt will understand, will accept our heartfelt apology, will forgive us, and will forget and allow the relationship to move on and progress.

We give forgiveness, and forget the wrongs others do to us, because we hope they will do the same with us, we give what we seek, we share and share alike. This is an essential part of relationships, and as long as the relationship is with another human like you, this actually deepens the intimate connection you have, as one human to another, who has beauty and ugliness inside, perfection and imperfection blended to make a whole.

However when dealing with a Narcissist or another type of abuser, you are not in a relationship with a human like you. They do not see themselves as equal to you. They never will. They are superior and you are inferior. Thus when you turn the other cheek after you have been slapped, they will slap the cheek which isn’t burning red from their hard hand. You gave it to them and they did what they always do.

But you need to forgive them and forget so you can move on, right?

There is another way to do it. One which will release you from feeling bad about holding a grudge, from the guilt of not being able to move on from the pain they have inflicted on you and the silent anger it inspires. Because forgive and forget is not about them, it is about you. They don’t need your forgiveness and forgetfulness, not really because they’ll just keep doing their thing whether you forgive and forget or not, but you do need it. You want to stop feeling what you are feeling, you want to heal the pain.

So, forgive yourself, and forget the hate you feel towards yourself for the mistakes you have made. Mistakes are just life experiments, methods of learning and evolving from what you have learned. Move on by showing yourself love, respect, compassion and patience. Be gentle with yourself, give to yourself all those things which you so freely gave to someone who does not appreciate it, is not grateful for it or deserving of it. They did not earn it, they earned the exact opposite of it.

You can’t forgive them or forget what they did to you. If you do, you’re just giving them the opportunity to do it all over again and again and again. They think you’re stupid… but you know that you are not.

My parents were both Narcissists. When I tell the stories of my childhood, some, most, are hard to believe. Even I have had trouble believing them, although I know I lived them. My parents, supported by others, by society, told me to forgive and forget. I did as I was told. Over and over and over again. The pain got worse. So I eventually stopped suffering from amnesia and an overly patient, self-sacrificing heart, and decided to embrace my memory and my grudges. It was the best thing I have ever done. For myself. Not for my abusers. I returned their blame to them. Sure, I share some of the blame, but I am not responsible for their part in what happened.

It’s a long process, and I am far from healed, some of the damage done to me is now a part of who I am, so healing it may not be the thing to do, however allowing it to inspire me, and share that inspiration with others, well, it’s a different kind of healing.

I am never going to forgive or forget. I don’t need to. I have taken the negative and started to transform it into a positive energy in my life. I am turning what seemed to be a curse into a gift. Perhaps the greatest gift is showing others who have suffered as I have that they have the power they need to also transform the curses in their lives into gifts which are healing and empowering.

Take care of yourself. First. Trust yourself. Always. Be gentle and kind with yourself. You deserve it. And give yourself a gift this Christmas which will be of lasting value. Love yourself.

And if you’re a Narcissist, Merry Effing X-mas, and please be aware that lowly ordinary humans have figured out what you’re all about and so when biting them this holiday season and trying to drain their Christmas Spirit, you might want to pause as they may have taken the antidote which is poison to you.

Some interesting posts and links about Narcissists – Help is out there, you are not alone:

The Narcissist at Christmas – Does exactly what it says in the title and walks you through how Narcissists behave at Christmas

Confessions of a Narcissist… – A beautiful post by someone who is not a Narcissist but had an encounter with someone (a Narcissist) who made her doubt herself.

One Thing that Sufferers of Abuse Need – Wonderful advice from someone who has lived it, so it is from the heart and the head.

The Concise Dictionary of Narcissists and Sociopaths – YES! Just absolutely YES! Very true and a great post! Narcissists do indeed have a very different dictionary from the rest of us, and they use the method known as Say Anything, then Say the exact opposite and confuse everyone in the process!

First Christmas Without the Narcissistic Ex? – Kim is in top form in this post, as always, and she is open to answering questions you may have, just be respectful, she is also recovering from being in a relationship with a Narcissist. She has turned a curse into a powerful gift!

Narcissism – Living Without Feelings – an excellent article which goes into depth and length about Narcissism, the various types of NPD and explores the possible causes of the disorder.

And for those on Facebook:

After Narcissistic Abuse – I only found and browsed it last night, but it seems to have a lot of very good information. And it’s a community, so if you’re recovering from Narcissistic abuse you may find it a safe haven offering support.

Narcissism and the Fruit of Sufferingthe blog of my favourite author, whose book Going Mad to Stay Sane helped me to figure out and explain many aspects of my own experience with narcissistic parents, especially my tendency to be self destructive.

The Narcissistic Continuum – a very comprehensive site and resource for information about NPD.


Have a link you want to add? Pop it in the comments!


  1. Excellent post!! You are correct- they will always view themselves as superior and you inferior. They only seek to control and get what they want. Forgiveness is about you, not them. I love the idea of an antidote to their poison. Awesome! Awesome!


    • Thank you 😀

      Love your post, very true and very inspiring, filled with excellent advice coming from the heart of personal experience! Speaking your truth sounds so simple but can be very difficult, yet it is very important to do it, and those who have been affected by a Narcissist often end up in a prison of silence, and I just love how you expressed it and showed the way to break the silence. Beautiful!


    • I think indifference works better as a poison… because although the killing with kindness tactic is effective, Narcissists miss the sting behind it and think it’s genuine so they lap it up and come back for more. 😉

      Liked by 1 person

        • Also if you did forgive and try to forget you could end up really sick and immunologically compromised.. Our bodies wont lie to us about abuse we suffer. To be told we should forgive what is toxic and harmful is dangerous and wrong.


          • Agreed! Bodies are very knowing things, pity we often ignore their signals!

            I remember once when a Narcissist attacked me verbally, I felt their words like a physical blow to my stomach, I was winded and had to sit down or I would have fainted. That left a lasting impression and made me look more at how the body expresses how we feel. There is a theory about how the water in our bodies holds memory, forgotten most of it, but every now and then I see science has discovered that this works at a cellular level. That we may inherit far more in our DNA, such as ancestral memories.

            Have you ever noticed that so called ‘evil’ people are often healthier and live longer than ‘good’ people. I might be being fanciful, my mind loves exploring theories real or imagined. ‘Evil’ people tend not to suppress their inner turmoil, they express it and don’t we know it, whereas ‘good’ people suppress a lot for the sake of being a ‘good’ person. Not saying ‘good’ people should turn ‘evil’ to live healthier and longer, just wonder… perhaps we need to rethink what is ‘evil’ and ‘good’ to give those who are ‘good’ more room for expression and release. Crazy or hmmm?


            • OMG I was lying in bed the other night and THAT EXACT SAME THOUGHT came to me. All the beautiful people die, as the narcissists around hem make them ill.. seen It too many times. In my last severely narc relationship I became sicker and sicker….you nailed it again.

              Did you ever read People of the Lie by M Scott Peck…. He says evil is live spelt backwards and gives cases of evil parents who bring their kids in for therapy and are abusing the kids, then leave when he tried to tell them that.

              Food for thought?


              • Yes, I’ve read M Scott Peck. I liked The Road Less Traveled. I reacted very differently to People of the Lie. It was one of the first times I began to consciously see how much people reveal about themselves when they talk/write about others. It helped me to begin unraveling the language of Narcissists. And it made me realise that when we read a book we come under the influence of the author and so it’s quite a good idea to find out what intentions lie behind the author’s words and work especially if the author presents themselves as an expert and authority on a subject.

                That’s been very useful to me because I read many non-fiction books which revolve around selling the reader a theory and making them believe it. So I always ask myself, why did the author really write this book? What were they seeking by doing it? What’s their real motivation? Why does the author need me to believe this? Do they believe it? Do they practice what they’re preaching? Gives an added dimension to reading a book. I also scan the attitude of the author with my senses. If I pick up a superiority complex it tends to make me less trusting of the author’s motives and intention. I know it’s a writing style for author’s of non-fiction, especially on certain subjects where they see themselves as a teacher, but there is a difference between a teacher passing on knowledge who believes that those reading are intelligent and one who just likes to lecture and considers those who read their book to be idiots.

                Of course I bring my own issues to my reading style 😉 so projecting stuff happens.


          • Gosh!!..u are so right….it’s good to hear it said from another person. Just reaffirms things you know but can’t really explain to others who think you are touchy or overreacting… I think the body knows way ahead.. Every time… The mind always seeks proof it lags behind


    • Thank you for the link 😀

      Wow, very compelling. I love what she said about expressing the rage, it’s a very necessary part of the healing process, releasing the ‘crazy’ openly and in a safe way, acknowledging how we really feel, is vital to our sanity as it helps to clear our confusion. As long as we remember that how we feel will never be acknowledged by the Narcissist, that trying to get them to understand will result in even more intense levels of frustration, because they feed off of that and actually get a buzz from our emotional turmoil. The more we hate them, the more they feel important to us. When they ignore us, they know we’ll chase them. Very powerful post!

      Hugs back 🙂


    • Thank you for the link – every insight is helpful to those seeking to understand their relationship with a Narcissist and heal the damage it does and find the gift in the curse. Your posts and the fact that you have written a book on the subject of surviving a Narcissist show that you’ve found the gift in the curse!

      I have had many relationships with Narcissists, and am the child of two Narcissists, but I’ve managed to avoid having a romantic/sexual relationship with one, thankfully, partly due to the fact that I was aware that I was damaged and needed to sort my head out before I entered that kind of relationship. The stories people have shared with me about it are touching and painful, but there is so much strength in their words that I think ultimately it is empowering once the healing has begun. Victims of Narcissists are inspiring souls.

      Your admission about not reading the entire post made me chuckle, I do have a tendency to ramble in my posts, that’s my style 😀


      • I think you said it all: “Victims of Narcissists are inspiring souls.” That is what you can give back to the community and the good that you can find from this awful thing.

        I, personally, would like you to write more about how it was when you were young. I recently found out that my mother was a narcissist and it has thrown me for a loop. My father was “around” but just absent.

        For me it was mother, husband and at least one daughter. Another daughter is showing signs but she is only twenty. So, I have a lot of painful experience. It is nice to know that someone is benefiting from it!


        • There is a book, which I keep recommending and probably should stop doing that because it is hard to find and expensive when found, Going Mad to Stay Sane by Andrew (Andy) White. The first chapter is – The Devouring Mother. The second chapter – The Absent Father. The third – Self Hatred: a Legacy. It explained my childhood and my life to me. I owe the author a lot 🙂 I have written quite a bit about my parents, my earlier posts about them are just rants because I kept quiet for a loooong time due to pressure from society to be respectful to one’s parents. So I let rip. I also have had No Contact with them for years, until this year. Lots of posts about this year 😉 very rambling posts!

          Finding out that your parent or parents are Narcissists can be difficult if you’ve taught yourself to see them as good parents (which a Narcissist parent encourages like a country encourages patriotism, and the propaganda onslaught never stops). If like me you knew there was something off all along, it can be liberating and a relief. A confirmation of what was suspected. It depends on the individual, but in the long run it is better to know the truth than to live in the shadow of uncertainty.

          Children of Narcissists absorb the behaviour of their NPD parents, like all children do with their parents, and mimic it, but do not necessarily become Narcissists. So, it takes time to figure out whether it is NPD or not. There is also a tendency of children of Narcissists to develop Inverted Narcissism. But that’s easier to solve than NPD. It still has an effect and must be eventually dealt with when the individual is ready to do so.

          Your courage to speak out and share is valuable and admirable, so thank you from all those who know the pain and the healing journey which goes with it. There is beauty and strength in your words.


          • Yes, you are correct. I found the book on Amazon and it was $650.00. I have a daughter in university, I will ask her to check the library there. I might be able to borrow it. Often they can get books in even if they are not on the shelves. Surprising to me, now that I am way past it, was that I developed a no contact policy with my mother, even though at the time I did not know about narcissism or how to deal with it. I guess it really is the only way to help yourself when your parent is a narcissist.

            I did not have that far to go when I found out that my mom was a narcissist. I knew that my parents were not good parents, but I had told myself other stories about why they were the way they were. Way less pathological stories. It was a terrible hit because I am now in the position of rethinking all of my previous understanding of my childhood and I don’t like the memories that I have to dredge up.

            You hit the nail on the head with “Children of Narcissists absorb the behaviour of their NPD parents”. This is my BIGGEST issue. I read, When Will I Be Enough, which is how I found out that my mother was a narcissist, and she summarizes some of the traits that you can absorb. I cannot say that I have none of them. 🙂 I have also been thrown into the realization that I may still be trying to get that pat on the head, the “good girl” acceptance and doing that through accomplishments etc. Terrifying at 51.

            Thanks for the support. Thanks for writing.


            • Thank you for sharing 😀

              I’m considering writing to the author and suggesting he reprints as an ebook because I keep recommending it and it should be easily available because there are certain points he makes which are brilliant and which I haven’t come across in any of the other professional literature on Narcissists, although I have seen elements of it in books of personal stories of relationships with Narcissists. It uses mythology and that is intrinsic to understanding Narcissistic behaviour because Narcissists live in a mythic version of reality. I found my copy many years ago in a secondhand bookshop.

              I think that our childhood can only really be understood when we are mature enough to deal with it. I’m in my 40’s and it now makes sense and I can view it from a safe and therefore healing perspective. I tried many times in the past to do that but I was too close to it to understand it. Age is an advantage, the older you are the more you are empowered by being yourself and to remove the blocks which stop you from being yourself, whereas the younger you are the more you are influenced by your peers and allow their opinion to dictate who you are. And we also live in a predominantly Narcissistic society which encourages us to be who we are not to get approval and success – Celebrity culture is one example.

              Have you read The Drama of the Gifted Child: The Search for the True Self by Alice Miller – still in print and affordable, and excellent at helping to understand our childhood and how it plays out in adulthood.

              I definitely have absorbed Narcissistic behaviour from my parents, but I did not become a Narcissist. Still the behaviour has caused many problems in my relationships and I’ve been adjusting it and making amends where I can. Some traits are a part of me, but I can express them constructively. The choice is there. Narcissists don’t have that choice, we think they do which frustrates us, but they really don’t. Having Narcissistic behaviour is very different from being a Narcissist because you’re open to self-awareness and the insight it brings. Narcissists have little to no self-awareness, and when it happens they don’t know what it means, it confuses them and scares them so they retreat from it.

              Not being good enough is connected to perfectionism and idealism. It’s trying to become an ideal, and forgetting that the ideal is there to inspire not to be made real. As long as we chase it we will never be good enough. Be it our ideal or someone else’s. Accepting our flaws and learning to view them as not flaws but beautiful humanness changes the not good enough to good enough and inspired to be better but not worried if better is not attainable because who we are as is is good for us, and when we are at home where we are others enjoy the benefits of that and we can share that self acceptance showing others that who they are is good too.

              We’re all in this together and we help each other as we journey along the path of our lives. We’re in very good company 🙂


              • You bring up an interesting point. I know that the jury is still out, but I have often wondered about the nature/nurture aspect of this condition. It is widely accepted that you become a narcissist because you had a traumatic childhood, or that sort of thing. What do you think? I am more of a believer in nature. When they hook electrodes up to a narcissist, their brains behave differently to stimuli than other’s. Also, for me, I was the mom and I know what kind of upbringing that my daughters had. Two of four appear to be narcissists which is mendelian genetics at its simplest. They had it coming from me (through my mother) and their father. The other two do not appear to be “afflicted”.

                Don’t forget, it was not that long ago that they blamed autism on the mother just not being “giving” and “caring” enough. 😦


                • I think the jury is still out because the members of the jury may have personal issues they have yet to deal with. My guess is that the nature vs nurture debate will continue to go on and on because proof of one or the other is based on the person finding the proof being unbiased about the results, and humans do not know how to be unbiased, even when they think they do.

                  I read a very interesting book which explored schizophrenia and whether it was genetic, thus nature, or caused by early trauma during the phase where a child’s brain is wiring itself, thus nurture – Sanity, Madness and the Family by R.D. Laing and A. Esterson.

                  How this relates to Narcissism – in my view so that’s all it is and I have touched upon this in a few of my posts on the subject. Narcissism is a natural phase of human development which we all pass through. We should all have a healthy dose of Narcissism as it gives us a sense of individuality. It is the point at which we begin to become aware of ourselves as being separate from everyone else, and it is during this time that we begin to create boundaries. Narcissists experience trauma during this phase and get stuck in it unable to move on to the next phase. Thus a person is not born a Narcissist, they become one. Thus nurture causes someone to become a Narcissist. And it is usually one or both of the parents of the Narcissist who invaded the child during this phase, thus causing healthy boundaries not to be formed – Narcissists don’t recognise boundaries between self and other. The parent was living through their child and pushed the child and its developing ego out, replacing it with their own ego needs. And this continues. Many Narcissists are very attached to one or both parents and are still trying to live up to the perfect child the parent wanted them to be. You can confirm this by listening to stories told by Narcissists of their early childhood (if you are really listening to the gaps where they speak truth between their fantasies). Narcissists will tell you everything you need to know about them. People often don’t hear it. It’s there. All the information which you need is there.

                  That is why Narcissists often behave like spoiled brats. They are stuck in that time, at that age when they were traumatised and are unable to move on from it.

                  Society also plays a part in the nurture of nature. Parenting is influenced by what is considered good parenting at the time. And society has issues connected to blaming and not blaming the family for the child. And I’m guessing we’re not going to resolve it any time soon.


                  • I couldn’t agree more that narcissism is a natural phase of human development which we all pass through. I have survived four teenagers and there is a very narcissistic phase at about 15 years of age, in my experience. Clinically, it is called individuation.

                    I read your summary of how a narcissist does not move properly past this stage. If this is genetic, they are more likely to receive “trauma” at this age because one or both of their parents are narcissists and the argument goes around 🙂


                    • The Narcissistic phase happens much earlier than the teenage years. The teenage years are about rebelling against the rule of the parents and asserting the individual self – who is a teenager. Basically teenagers realise their parents are humans but don’t know how to deal with it other than by rebelling. It’s about seeing the hypocrisy in rules which ruled your life up until this point. Teenage rebellion is very healthy for the teenager, not so much for the parent who now has to deal with no longer being a god-like figure in their child’s life. Tough one because it was nice being king or queen for a while.

                      If the teenager goes through the teenage phase while Society is in a Narcissistic phase, then they may reflect what their peers are being influenced by.

                      Narcissistic Personality Disorder is NOT genetic, but many parents like this idea because it absolves them of responsibility. Since many parents are dealing with issues handed down to them by their parents, well, it can all get too much if things are viewed from a negative perspective. How many parents rush to claim their childrens’ successes, but also rush to disown any perceived failures in their children? So – It’s my fault/influence my children are so intelligent and talented, but it’s not my fault my children are so screwed up!

                      I’m sure your daughters received the love and support they needed to develop healthily from you even if your partner, their father, was a Narcissist. You’re worried about them, which is natural for a mother and a survivor of a Narcissist. Trust in the fact that you did what you could and guided them as best as you could while dealing with your personal challenges. The rest is up to them. They have their own life journeys to experience. Don’t be quick to think they’re Narcissists just because they have some traits of NPD which worry you. All humans have some of those traits, and our society at the moment encourages those traits. It’s not NPD just because someone has those traits. Just continue to love and support them as the individuals they are and are becoming. They’ll be fine. Focus your concern on continuing your own healing, the effects of feeling more accepting and better about yourself will ripple into your daughters lives. As children they witnessed a lot of what happened between you and their father and they may be trying to protect you. They may be being who you need them to be to please you and make things better for you. They sound like wonderful souls. Ease up on your own need to be perfect and it’ll change everything. Life is not perfect and neither are humans, that’s the beauty of it all and of us!

                      Take care of yourself.

                      Liked by 1 person

                    • Thanks. So true that simply because they are showing some signs they are not necessarily NPD. I am super sensitive to all things narcissistic right now so I won’t even try to claim objectivity.

                      BTW I am not one of the parents that takes credit for the successes of my children. I realized a long, long, time ago that if I wanted to do that, I was also responsible for the bad and the truth is that I don’t have that much control.

                      Take care of yourself, as well.


                    • I can tell you’re not one of those parents. You sound like a very caring mother who is worrying a bit too much which is very understandable and natural. It’s a difficult role to take on and requires much courage. Be good to yourself and see all of the love you have given and appreciate it. Your daughters have someone who loves them as they are, supports them and is there for them, and that is priceless 🙂

                      Give yourself credit and relax, and look after yourself now 🙂


    • Thank you 🙂

      I used to watch my parents do it. I was an observer, observing. It’s actually very easy to do, and anyone can do it… but why would you want to (unless you’re manipulative).

      The basics of it are neither positive or negative, they’re just social skills, it’s what a person does with it, their intention, which defines it. It’s How to Win Friends and Influence People (Dale Carnegie) – but a narc uses it for ‘evil’, whereas others use it for ‘good’ or with neutrality.

      Celebrities use some of the tactics for their interviews. Please love me and find me fascinating (Be a fan. Buy the ticket to my movie, buy the DVD, buy my perfume, book, and other merchandise). Written interviews with celebs are particularly interesting to study. It’s intriguing to try and figure out where the interviewer is in the game – are they aware of it and participating in it, using it as part of their job, or are they falling for it, usually because they’re new to the job and lack the cynicism which comes with experience.

      Have you ever watched – Inside The Actors Studio with James Lipton – fascinating stuff!

      We love charm and charming people… it’s the not so charming side of charm which makes it something we hate, especially when we fall for it.

      We all live and learn, and live to learn again – all this information which is now so rampantly available is kind of limiting our ability to excuse our naivety. Shucks! Yet still…


  2. Thank you for sharing & exposing what a relationship with an N does to a soul! For me it has been 5 yrs since D day (when I came home to find my ex N & his married troll in our home) that is when the nightmare for me started. The emotional & social & psychological abuse that I experienced was truly a fate worse than death! I finally divorced him Dec 2013 and that is when the voices started saying,Let go of your anger & move on, Forgive Him, Stop blaming him…etc! So thank you for putting on paper what I have been feeling for quite awhile. No N deserves your forgiveness because they don’t think they have done anything wrong, I mean N tells me I just had an affair 5 yrs ago & because you are so insecure you don’t want me to have any female friends. This was a statement he made to me about 1 1/2 yrs after his affair about another woman who in front of God & everyone they acted like little high school lovers. This whole time N is still married to me & he is calling, txting, going out of town, concerts, dinner etc with his new BFF that of course Loves him & he trusts her more than me because I am too angry…WTF!@!@##! these creatures are not human beings because they can not feel any emotion for anyone but themselves. Now I am trying to heal my heart & soul & move on wrestling to forgive him & her & just letting it go & then friends would be chanting the same thing & I got so frustrated that I just needed this validation & permission in your blog to not lose that anger, to use this most unfortunate & negative experience & create a positive experience. I also feel inspired to share my experience with other survivors of N abuse but also to “teach” so to speak others that forgiving an N just reassures him that there are no consequences for his behaviors & he can go on to his next supply. By the way his BFF & he are now living together & yet N still tells me we are just good friends…I am grateful for Karma, but sometimes I think that these creatures won’t be affected by Karma, because no one & nothing really matters to them. So thank you for encouraging me to stand up for myself & speak my heart to others. Now I can say to my friends, “Don’t fall for his Mr Nice guy facade because he only wants to be in control & turn my friends against me. Slowly they are starting to see that No Contact with these Heartless Fools is the only way to be!


    • Thank you for sharing too 🙂

      Acknowledging and expressing our anger is an important part of the process of healing from a relationship with a narcissist. It’s a step which can’t be missed or it leaks out in our lives in other ways, and we may end up taking it out on ourselves or on those who don’t deserve it, accidentally passing on what has been done to us.

      Recovering from a relationship with a narcissist involves steps similar to the 5 stages of grief – Denial, Anger, Bargaining, Depression, Acceptance.

      When we first realise that we are dealing with a narcissist rather than a healthy human being, we can find it hard to face as it means that the life and relationship which we thought we had is not what we thought it was. That they are not who we thought they were. That in some ways we have been in love with a lie, an illusion.

      The denial part of it ties in with the denial which a narcissist uses in their own life, it is an intrinsic part of NPD. It is one of the hardest elements of it to deal with because they use it well, on themselves and on others. They are experts at selling illusions, because they believe them.

      So when we start to see through their illusion, we usually find ourselves alone because everyone else around the narcissist still believes the illusion. And if you confront a narcissist, they will turn everyone against you, creating more illusions for people to believe and which they believe too. The society around a narcissist will ostracise the person who refuses to buy into the illusion. They can’t allow themselves to see that they’ve been fooled, as this would make them feel foolish, so they prefer to believe that they are right, that the narcissist is right and real. It is a very frustrating experience. The flip side is that it’s a good way to find out who your real friends are.

      The bargaining phase is when you hope that having confronted the narcissist, they will see what they have done, accept partial responsibility, be accountable, take some blame and perhaps even seek to make amends. Narcissists don’t do that. They are perfect, everyone else is the problem. And they never change. Confronting them does not lead to anywhere except more lies, denial and frustration. If you offer them forgiveness, they’ll use it against you as proof that they are right and you are wrong. They will never apologise or acknowledge your side of the story, the only side of the story which is valid for them is theirs and they are always the hero of their story.

      The hopelessness of ever getting acknowledged, validated, heard, of feeling that everyone is against you and on the side of the narcissist, of watching the narcissist get away with everything that they say and do, leads to depression and intense loneliness. However it is the moment when we finally come face to face with our own feelings, thoughts, pain, experience. It’s when we begin to really listen to our own story and hear what it is telling us. Our pain tells us where we are hurting and can guide us to our healing.

      Acceptance is when we have acknowledged our own story, no longer need anyone else to confirm it for us, we know the truth. We accept that the narcissist is a narcissist, and that is that. They’re not going to change, they’re never going to acknowledge us or what they’ve done to us. We don’t need that anymore. We’re moving on to taking care of ourselves and doing what we have to do for ourselves. Screw them, they don’t deserve any more of our energy or attention, that belongs to us now and we’re going to give it to ourselves.

      Something along those lines.

      This is an excellent post about the process of healing from a relationship with a narcissist –

      This is also worth reading –

      Forgiving a narcissist is more about forgiving ourselves for having loved them and allowed ourselves to get caught up in their reality. For having been fooled by them and for having denied our own truth to support their version of it. So we really need to focus on cutting ourselves some slack, being gentle with ourselves, being compassionate towards ourselves. Forgiving ourselves.

      They don’t really need our forgiveness, they’ll just waste it if we give it to them, use it against us, but we do need it. But as always we get caught up in what they need and forget our own needs, and that festers.

      Other people (interfering) tell us to forgive them, but what do they mean by that? If this had happened to them, would they forgive as easily as they expect us to do so? Most people tell us to forgive people like narcissists because 1) they don’t want to hear about our problems anymore, they want us to shut up. 2) It sounds likes the sort of thing a ‘good’ person would say and they see themselves as being a ‘good’ person. 3) They can’t think of anything else to say. 4) They feel superior when they say it, and they’re fairly certain that nothing like this would ever happen to them. 5) they’ve never been in a relationship with a narcissist, don’t understand the situation and think (as perhaps we used to) that all people are good and sometimes do bad things, and thus should be forgiven and given another chance, or at least a chance to make amends. There are other reasons, I’m sure.

      However we can give narcissists a version of forgiveness to help ourselves let go of them and their crazy world, and that is accepting them as they are – narcissists being narcissists and doing what narcissists do. By accepting them as they are, I don’t mean putting up with them. I mean that’s who they are and that’s a pretty miserable way to live. They may seem happy on the outside, but on the inside it is a very different story. They’re stuck in a loop, living in fear, empty, doomed to repeat the same thing over and over again ad infinitum. Eventually they will end up pissing everyone off and they won’t know why. That’s about it.

      Take care of yourself, let yourself roar, roam free. Living well (with the narcissist out of your life and mind) is the best revenge!

      Best wishes!


      • I love you Ursula…you are the best! This response needs to be printed off and given to all psychologists that treat people who have had a relationship with a narcissist. So true and concise. You bless us all with your ability to put emotions/thoughts into words. Forever thankful. I am at the acceptance phase…yippee!


        • Thank you 🙂

          The acceptance phase is such a relief. It’s also rather weird because you sometimes do a double-take on everything you’ve been through and can’t believe that you’re finally at this point. It’s like climbing a mountain and getting to the top and being so knackered that you haven’t quite realised you’re there and a part of you still thinks you need to keep climbing… and then you see the view and it’s like – WOW!

          It’s awesome! Congratulations! You were always going to get there because you have a brave heart which has the courage to see, accept, and give yourself what you really need.

          So happy for you! Yay! 😀


          • I owe much of my recovery to you. I never really thought about it much but I have realized and can very confidently say, “I know who I am.” That’s all that matters from here on out. I’ll evolve and change as I age, just like everyone else but my core soul will be the same. I have learned that struggles like these in life test this and if you are willing to push through, you’ll be better for it. WOW is right! Thank you…


            • That is really kind, thank you 🙂

              Remember you found me because you were looking for answers to questions… and you turned my words into something of value for you.

              Knowing who we are, uncovering and discovering ourselves… that’s the sugar and spice of life!


            • It does seem that even the bad times weren’t so bad, if we learned something of value about world and about ourselves. Its really empowering to know not only did we survive but we can flourish even more with this new found wisdom.


      • Well said about everything,especially the part about other peoples motivation behind what they are advising you. When you have been really kicked around, being told to just get over it ,or you have to forgive; can feel like more piling on. Its tough to forgive ,when the person has no regard for you, and is really pissed off that you are now hurting and angry about it. They want you to keep on being the good sport forever and the fool they laughed at ,behind your back. Im fine with moving on to your happiness without giving them anymore from yourself than what you all ready gave. A book I read once,said its ok to just shift your focus away from the hurt and the pain and the person. Just don’t care anymore. Its for you after all , so if that works to feel good, and not attract anymore negativity, its all good.


        • Thank you 🙂

          It’s interesting for me to see which bit you didn’t agree with. I have to admit I wavered on that point while writing this post and went with a diplomatic approach. Partly due to this post being a fairly passionate rant – I felt I needed a bit of balance. Which may have caused it to become off balance.

          I’ve spent far too much time being angry with everyone for everything. I was always being told, lectured, to forgive people who repeatedly hurt me… because those people were my parents and I was the child who was expected to put up with everything and honour my parents, no matter what. Other people could tell me I had to forgive, and they’d feel good about themselves for saying that, while they were exempt from the consequences of my doing it if I did it. Only I had to pay for forgiving those who hurt me. Those who encouraged me to forgive got to avoid paying for it and they’d get to live another day where they could tell me, yet again, all about how I had to forgive.

          So I understand what you’re saying and agree with you. I just don’t want to get stuck in a certain place which causes me to become like those who have hurt me – and I end up passing on the wound.

          I’m still figuring this out so… it’s bound to be full of errors.

          There is a difference between the motivations of those who ask you to forgive someone else, who intercede on behalf of someone else, perhaps interfering in something which is none of their business, but they’ve been dragged into it one way or another (often by the person who has hurt you and wants you to forgive them, so they can do it again with a clear conscience). These people usually mean well, it may be a misguided well-meaning but it’s still intended to bring a truce to a situation. They don’t know the whole story and don’t want to know it – their story is that of the person who is being a Good Samaritan of sorts.

          It’s frustrating to deal with them, in some ways they’re worse than the people who hurt you and whom you’re being asked to forgive.

          When those who have hurt you, especially repeatedly, expect you to forgive them yet again… eff that, big time!!!

          I used to tell everyone to eff off… I’ve become slightly more empathic with age and experience. Some people just… well… what you said about karma.

          I recently hired someone to deal with my mother who had yet again reared her Medusa head. I knew explaining things to this person was pointless. So I simply said – you deal with her, I’m done with dealing with her. He went down the usual road – oh, let me help you forgive and forget, a child and parent should be united, and… blah, blah blah… I said No… and waited. A while later he said – I’m firing myself because your mother is a nightmare and I don’t want to deal with her, sorry. So it goes.

          People who tell you to forgive and forget… often do so because… they want you to have a happy ending to help them have one. The ones who are more vocal about it, are often the ones who have their own secret hell where they can’t forgive someone, but… if you can, maybe they can. But none of us ever really do even when we pretend.

          Those who abuse us… they certainly never forgive or forget. It feeds their reasons for hurting others again and again.

          Thank you for sharing. Trust yourself, and do what thou wilt… don’t let anyone else tell you what to do with your life!


      • That part .of the friends you lose because they choose to back the personality disordered person ,is so so true. I think it’s because not only are those types more persuasive ,but they also tend to keep people of poor charecther at their disposable to participate in their dirty deeds. So even when they may say they agee with how awful you were treated, they do a back peddle and drop their support and side with the abusive person. So the persons in a group like this are not the types to take a stand for the poor victim and risk any repercussions.


        • Thank you 🙂

          A blog I follow recently shared this post – – which I think you might find interesting as it deals with how others are used by those who abuse. It also gives a bit of context between how healthy relationships work versus unhealthy ones.

          Relating is always complicated, filled with complexity – we’re all damaged to a degree, and are trying to work things out. Working things out often means experiencing the whole gamut of things.

          Other people have used us in the same way that they use others. We’ve probably been pawns to support someone against someone else. We may not even be aware of it, as we may have been used without being a part of it. We all know the whole – So and so said… routine. And on occasion we’ve actively participated in a witch hunt. We wouldn’t be human if we didn’t get caught up in such things.

          From the worst often emerges the best. Sometimes we only understand things after having lived through it, through the worst to find the best.

          Narcissists often ‘play the victim’ and anyone who has been burned by that kind of narcissist. playing that kind of game, is wary of victims and the repercussions.

          We live and leanr and hopefully don’t pass on the wound the way it has been passed onto us, but instead pass on healing.


          • Im pretty careful about hurting people and allways have been, but its true wev’e all done something wer’e ashamed of. The kind of people I’m talking about, have lived their whole lives in dysfunction and get off on being devious or prey ing on the weak and the vulnerable. Of course they hide it with a mask and pretend to be your friend when it suits them.Whats fabulous is all of them are floundering now after burning me, and I’m doing great and soaring like an eagle .


            • Sometimes, no matter how careful you are, people get hurt. Some people go out of their way to get hurt and will use you to hurt themselves – it’s part of their way of doing things, and getting others to do things for them. There is nothing like emotional blackmail to get people to do things for you, cater to you.

              When you break ties with people who have been using you, they often use the tactic of the wounded to suck you back in. How could you leave them, look how much they need you, how could you be so heartless and cruel, etc.

              Sometimes you just need to spread your wings and fly out of there. See things from above, and find a new place to be. Keep soaring 🙂


  3. So F***ing exactly right… What a relief….ha ha… I always though there was something not totally okay about having been kicked and then forgiving the other person…Jesus!!! …and why exactly are you not supposed to kick back????? And they can then forgive you back ….why is the damn onus always on the receiving end.. Like doubly unfair or something…
    What’s wrong with kicking back a moron? It doesn’t make you exactly like the moron cos you don’t do it habitually and it is not your default mechanism of being…

    Thank you for this post… This is my gut belief always.. What you give out May come back to you in double… Whether that’s good or bad.

    Also I think Forgive and Forget May be a tad dated…better would be to Learn Apply Evolve Share. Ha!


    • I think that there is a certain logic to the concept of Forgive and Forget, and in certain cases it makes sense to apply it. We all make mistakes and cause hurt to others, and we all occasionally need people to cut us some slack. However when it becomes a rigid rule of social interaction which we are expected to apply to every situation regardless of what that situation actually entails, without stopping to question whether it is the tactic which is best suited to this particular case, then it becomes a problem rather than a problem solver.

      Like with all ideas which have entered the collective human consciousness, and which have been around for a long time, passed down from generation to generation, they change and sometimes we forget why the idea was created and it just becomes an automatic response. It’s a bit like throwing water on to fire to put the fire out without first trying to figure out if it is the sort of fire which would be put out by water or if water might actually makes things worse.

      Forgive and Forget has become an automatic go-to fix-all, and sometimes it doesn’t fix things it makes them worse. If we forgive someone for kicking us without knowing who exactly is kicking us and why they are doing it, we may end up getting kicked again by this person, perhaps because they interpret our Forgive and Forget as a sign that we like being kicked, they are encouraged to keep doing it and they may even encourage others to kick us too, and those watching will change the way they treat us based on our response.

      Our Forgive and Forget may not get us the respect we hoped it would by showing how noble and altruistic we are, and the very people who insisted that we apply the balm of Forgive and Forget may disappear or claim they did no such thing when we turn to them and say – Look where Forgive and Forget has gotten me, look at all the bruises I have from being repeatedly kicked, still think I should Forgive and Forget?!

      We need to think for ourselves and trust ourselves to know what is best for us on a case by case basis. Sometimes kicking back is the only way to deal with a situation.

      And I love Learn Apply Evolve Share!!! 🙂


    • I think sometimes we need to kick back in certain circumstances to regain our power. I was all ways a turn the other cheek type. That doesn’t work too good these days and I’ve learned to fight back to get out of victim mode. But once was enough and once I relayed the message don’t fuck with me,I left the rest up to karma. Karma is way way crueler than me.


  4. I was searching this morning for some words about this subject after being told by an abuser that I needed to forgive and forget and move on, so they could get back to the business of being my friend. I stood there during this instruction in shock. Were they kidding?! I had no desire to allow this person back into my life. Not even for a nanosecond! Why wouldn’t I just douse myself in gasoline and light a match instead? Getting severely burned all over again would happen much quicker. Right?!
    This is the true mark of an abuser, especially a narcissistic sociopath. They have no clue that what they do to others, how they treat people, is so wrong that it’s criminal.

    Forgive yourself for falling into their den of darkness. And then forget them. That’s the forgive and forget I practice and I refuse to deviate from it.

    As for my situation? I smiled and nodded and quietly exited. Why make a stir and give the narc motivation to focus on me longer than it has to? They are already so deluded with self aggrandizement that they won’t even hear you leave.


    • Thank you 🙂

      This post – – is very worth reading, as it is a wonderful insight into the dynamic of forgive and forget and how it can confuse us, especially when others weigh in on it with regards to us and our relationships.

      I tend to pause when someone uses the term ‘narcissistic sociopath’ as I am uncertain as to whether they are talking about a narcissist or a sociopath who has narcissistic tendencies. People often use the term for narcissists as well as sociopaths, and sometimes to describe someone who is neither a narcissist nor a sociopath but who has hurt them repeatedly and deeply in a manner which ticks some of the boxes int he criteria for one or both, to stress the pain they have experienced due to someone else, to place the person who hurt them above the ‘regular’ narcissist by adding ‘sociopath’ to ‘narcissist’. Which makes sense in terms of expressing personal pain, and how pain expresses itself when it talks, but also creates a bit of confusion (at least for me). There are similarities between the two, Sociopaths do have narcissistic tendencies… do narcissists have sociopathic tendencies? Maybe, it can definitely seem that way when you are on the receiving end of their behaviour. But they also have differences, which are pertinent as a sociopath is generally very aware of what they are doing and saying whereas a narcissist, especially a covert narcissist who believes their version of events (and often thinks they are the victim of the very problem and personality disorder, which they have but which they think their victim has), tends not to be aware. This lack of awareness is what makes narcissists far more frustrating to deal with than sociopaths, although sociopaths are far more dangerous.

      This – – to me helps to define the sociopath side of the difference.

      This – – to me helps to define the narcissist side of the difference.

      And this – – is a great summing up of the difference between how a narcissistic person views basic interaction versus a non-narcissistic person.

      And this – – is just for fun. Fun in a practical manner, as dealing with abusive people often involves insults which hurt and if the person insulting figures out that a particular insult hurts us they tend to use it to manipulate us – so it is up to us to protect ourselves, and this is quite a good way to take the sting out of the insult so they can’t use it. That always stumps them. especially if it has always worked on us… and suddenly it doesn’t anymore.

      Thank you for sharing, your take on troublesome relationships is always eye-opening!


        • Not the same in my book, and not a something, but a part of a someone… which affects the someone that I am and is seen through the eyes of this someone, which may not be seeing other someones as they are but as I am, seeing them as I need them to be to be who I want myself to be… there is a certain ambiguity which is always questionable and questioning. But sometimes we avoid asking those sort of questions because we do not like the answers.

          Humans, being human… always a question within an answer or is it an answer within a question.


          • Lately I have tried to focus more on me and less on why they do the things they do, or who they are, or might be. I have questioned and analyzed their behavior so often and now I think I need to just take care of myself for a while. And that means knowing that if I don’t feel forgiving, then I don’t have to pretend that I am. That’s liberating.


            • How we focus on ourselves determines the sort of focus which we give to others. Deciding to not pretend… encourages us to be more authentic, and that kind of focus is healthy for us and for how others experience our company 🙂

              Liked by 1 person

        • I see them as the same too. They’re both crummy types that will drag me down with them. I feel I attract sociopaths, or at least I used to. They loved my forgiving hold it all in personality. I’ve totally learned my lesson about engaging in anything with people that have major personality disorders. I like to stick to nice functional types who play fair and wouldn’t dream of playing games with someones life.

          Liked by 1 person

  5. Its dangerous and unrealistic to forgive everybody who has hurt you. Especially when that forgiveness has been taken advantage of. I think we need to do it on our own terms. For me it feels like rape to forgive people who enjoyed harming me. The best I can do, is move on and do well in my life, and in time they will be irrelevant to my life. Not letting them win by stealing my happiness makes me a winner.


    • Thank you for sharing 🙂

      I agree, we need to do things on our own terms. Forgiveness takes time and consideration. Sometimes it is part of the natural flow of a path on which we are on, and sometimes it is a detour and leads us away from where we’re going to where someone else wants us to go for them.

      We need to think things through, and figure out why we’re doing what we’re doing. If forgiveness is somethign we’re doing, we need to understand what it entails and decide how to proceed in a way which respects us as well as others. So… such a thing may take a while, and if others are in a hurry, then… that informs us and guides us.

      We need to follow our own thing, whatever it is.


  6. For me to forgive a wrong doing perpetrated against me, the person has to be sorry and communicate that to me. They also need to be a person who made a bad mistake ,but not a bad person. But if they purposely betrayed me and played me for sport, hell no! I’ll not be broken with hate, but they’ll be for all intents and purposes dead to me from here on out.


    • It’s important to honour the personal, and be aware of its part in things like forgiveness, and other concepts of that sort.

      There really is no point in forgiving someone who is only going to do the same thing again. It’s just going through the mtions because society needs it, and people use what society needs for their own ends. It’s like playing a game because the other person enjoys it, but you don’t… so why play it with them?

      What you said reminded me of this – – everyone knows how to apologise, because, like forgiveness, we’re told over and over again how it is a useful social interactive tool. But a genuine apology is very different from one offered as a means to a selfish end. Just as real forgiveness is different from the sort of forgive and forget we do to move on for selfish reasons, maybe get a pat on the back because we’re being saintly and whatnot.

      It’s better to be honest with ourselves and do what it is we want to do rather than do what others want us to do and live to regret it.

      Always trust yourself 🙂


      • Even if someone apologizes I’m still going to test it to be sure it’s genuine and not designed to gain something. Iv’e had that happen before, where I was treated horribly by someone and he text me how really really sorry he was. But when I didn’t agree to certain things he quickly shifted back to horrid again. I realized the sorry was for him and he didn’t mean it at all. It was only a gesture to control me and handle me.


        • If we try to extract an apology from someone else for something we think they’ve done to us, for which we want an apology, and they know we want an apology… but they don’t actually think they’ve done anything wrong, and they maybe think that we’re the ones in the wrong for demanding an apology, but they know we’re not going to back down until we get what we want – then it’s never going to be genuine on their part, they’re just people-pleasing and we’re the people they’re pleasing with their apology which is just a going through the motions.

          Be careful, but be careful of being careful too. What we do to others, others do to us too. If you test people, people will test you too. Humans are humans, no matter what side of the story you are on.

          Best wishes!


          • I dont demand apologies or ask for them ever. What would be the point? If treated underhanded for no reason; it’s not too surprising when one gets offered one afterwards. It doesn’t matter now though, as I’m happily married and not out in the trenches anymore , so to speak. I wouldn’t put myself in a situation to be taken advantage emotionally again and so that’s that. I had more the problem prior ,being too forgiving and not demanding enough, but that me is gone. It was a good change for the better.


            • Sometimes it is logical to want an apology, and to ask for one, and it can open up an interesting dialogue, deepen understanding in a relationship. It can also be the way we stand up for ourselves, let someone know they’ve crossed a line, let ourselves know there’s an issue. It can, as you said, also be pointless.

              Glad to hear that your past experiences are in the past and that the present is wonderful. It’s great to finally meet someone who totally gets you and with whom you can be yourself 🙂


              • I never thought of asking someone for an apology before. Yes it’s great when your’e with someone who gets you and loves you for real. And when youv’e really suffered at the hands of others, you appreciate it even more, because you know it’s precious.


                • Life has its seasons and reasons, when we flow with it sometimes we reap a harvest fertilised by experience, and pain. Our tears water the ground from which a seed is nurtured. A blooms makes our life bloom. There’s a poetry to it even when things are bleak.

                  Enjoy your harvest!


        • This is how my ex N was. He woulda apologize, but if I didn’t accept, he would rage on me and the verbal abuse would come right back. He would turn things around in order to make whatever he was “apologizing” for in the first place seem not that bad and basically not even worth an apology. So looking back basically he was apologizing if it helped him, but if not, he made sure I knew he didn’t mean he was sorry anyway in order to avoid narcissistic injury from my disapproval.


          • Thank you for sharing 🙂

            Narcissists have to make a big effort to be nice to us. Their idea of being nice is often far from nice. They think they do nice so well no one can spot that it’s fake (they tend to think everyone who is nice is faking it too).

            When they make that effort to be nice or do the nice thing, they expect a reward, which is usually us doing or saying whatever they think we’re supposed to do or say when they’re being nice.

            When we catch them out in a lie, stand up for ourselves when they’re accusing us of something, bullying us, generally being nasty to us, they get annoyed with us for being mean and unreasonable. If they have to apologise, they expect us to be grateful, especially as they often think they’ve done nothing wrong and they’re only apologising because they want us to shut up, or because they have an audience and the apology shows their audience what a good person they are.

            Mostly they use what is known as a fauxpology ( It’s an apology which is not an apology at all, and is usually designed to justify their actions and words, and shift the blame and responsibility for what happened onto to us.

            If we don’t accept their apology when they bother to give one, it’s a slap in their face because they made such an effort to do the right thing which they didn’t think was right anyway, it didn’t reward them, we didn’t do what we were supposed to do which was give them what they wanted, so then they get angry, have a tantrum, because that’s their go-to mechanism when things don’t go exactly as they want them to go. If they can’t get control one way, they try another tactic until we give up and let them get away with whatever they did and give them what they want.

            They’re basically spoiled children in adult bodies.

            Glad to hear you got out, and have a clear perspective on the relationship. They have a way of making us feel like the villain in the scenario, and it can be very confusing.

            Take care of yourself!


            • Thanks for your response, but despite me having all this knowledge of this disordered person, I still find myself missing him and just so mad that he promised me so many things and never delivered. I feel like all my hopes and dreams rested on this man (which I know I should never do and I know it means I have things to work on aside from healing from what he specifically caused) and I trusted him wholeheartedly, only to be left w nothing besides feeling worthless. Before I met him, I thought I was a good, giving, genuine person, but he has me doubting everything I loved about myself… And then the way he worded his “apologies” for making me feel this way, made it so much worse and made me feel like it was my fault.
              I can’t figure out if I am mad, depressed, unaccepting that this really happened or still care for that monster.

              I start counseling next week (Ive been NC since Aug. 30 and we broke up July 24) and hope to maneuver my way out of this fog and confusion of my own feelings which may very well be a mixture of all those I mentioned above.


              • There is a gift which comes out of such a deeply painful experience, and that is that thanks to the confusing mess a narcissist makes of your head, heart and view of yourself, you have to dig deep into yourself to sort out the confusion and you actually get to know yourself better. Narcissists inadvertently help us to have a better relationship with ourselves. They teach us to appreciate ourselves more, and to value who we are, to be more authentic in our lives, because they try to take all of that away from us and the experience makes us fight harder for ourselves, be better friends to ourselves.

                They basically are passing on their wound to us, doing to us what was done to them which made them into a narcissist, but underneath their persona they feel worthless, hate themselves, want to be someone else, are afraid of being who they really are, they don’t know who they really are, etc, unlike them we can heal the wound, find ourselves through healing it, and it makes us more real, strengthens who we are.

                I often equate the process we go through to heal from a relationship with a narcissist with the 5 Stages of Grief – Denial, Anger, Bargaining, Depression, and finally Acceptance.

                The anger is often the longest stretch, and the easiest one to get stuck in. It’s a complex emotion, made of many parts. We’re often angry at ourselves for loving a narcissist. Being angry at the narcissist reminds us about what they did, and we may use it to protect ourselves (Anger’s basic primal purpose is to protect us) from forgetting and forgiving, and perhaps going back to them. Anger can also show us what’s really going on with us, but we have to acknowledge it first and sometimes we’re afraid to do it because we worry about what will happen to us when we do. Suppressing our anger can lead to depression.

                There are certain things worth keeping in mind, which are easy to lose track of when recovering from a relationship with a narcissist.

                1 – It’s okay to still have positive feelings for the narcissist, to still love them, miss them, remember the good times, the good side of them. This will cause conflicting emotions to swirl around in you, and your mind will try to make sense of it in a black and white way, and you may experience cognitive dissonance. Those feelings belong to you. And the narcissist was good when they were good. The nastiness, the monster part, that’s the wound of the narcissist, that wound eats away inside of them, it spoils them, and the inner toxins leak out and spill onto you. It’s okay to feel conflicted.

                2 – If you were good, giving, genuine before meeting the narcissist, then you still are the person you were before-narcissist. However, you’re also changing, evolving because of this experience. Relationships are supposed to change us, to make us become more of who we are. All those aspects of yourself will be strengthened due to doubt, although at first it will feel as though they’re weakened by it. Self-doubt isn’t all bad, it forces us to get to know ourselves better. Through the questions it inspires, we go deeper into ourselves to find the answers.

                You will go through a period of feeling terrible about yourself, being hard on yourself, may blame yourself for everything that happened to you, may blame the narcissist for everything and feel powerless because of it, may find it hard to trust yourself or anyone else, be confused and lost, not knowing who you are, feel like you’re drowning and no one can save you. You will be fine, you just may have a hard time realising that. It’s okay to feel bad, confused, lost, these are all part of the process of discovering more about ourselves, and of healing.

                3 – There is nothing wrong with you. You’re human, being human is complex. We all make mistakes, they’re part of living and being. Many mistakes lead to rewards which we’d have never received if we had gotten everything right. Being perfect is a static state, and a complete illusion. Life is about learning, and mistakes are the best teachers.

                We all put our hopes and dreams upon others – Do you know why we get told not to do that? Because everyone has done it, for some it goes well, but it can go wrong and when it does go wrong people focus on the bad experience, pain makes us rigid, we’re afraid of doing it again, feeling pain again, and so we decide that to avoid further pain we should make a rule that no one should do it ever again, and we make people feel bad when they do it. It’s the big feel bad of an I told you so! But what if doing it had worked out and had been the right thing to do? What if not doing something because it didn’t work out, makes us lose out on an opportunity when it will work out?

                4 – You will come out of this loving yourself more than you did before-narcissist. It’ll be a deeper and stronger kind of love, and won’t depend so much on others confirming it for you. You’ll have a stronger sense of self because you’ll know more about yourself, and you will know how much you can rely on yourself to get you through the challenges of life.

                This is worth a read –

                Best wishes on your counseling! You’re going to be okay, be gentle with yourself 🙂


                • Thank you so much for your response. It’s been almost 3 months since he discarded me and I am so depressed. Maybe I suppressed my anger. Actually, I know I did. I have never had this hard of a time letting go of anyone. I remember the good times and it makes me sick that he will share those same types of feelings with someone else. I worry I never will. He spoiled to the point that I don’t know if anyone will ever live up to that again. I’m afraid ill never live another like I did him BC I loved him unconditionally. I’m 33 and I feel like it’s hopeless for me to find true love. At the same time, I know our relationship had terrible times and I walked on eggshells and felt judged all the time. Everything he did was excatly what all my research narcisissts do. But I still wonder if it’s something I did wrong to cause it all, like he told me. I wonder if he truly was never like that before me and I wonder if he’ll be the amazing man I wanted, for someone else. He has an ex-wife that responds to his messages the way we are taught to respond to narcissists, so I have a feeling and some validation there as well, that he truly is one and will never change. But I still doubt that he is one more often than not. My family hated him. My friends tried to warn me. I know they saw something I didn’t. He was controlling to the extreme and his rages were terrible. He was over-sensitive and manipulative, but he doesn’t even know it, I’m afraid. I just can’t make sense of it all. Three months later. I am so frustrated w myself for not moving on when I know all these things and how he treated me. At least when we were together I knew that despite the bad times, there would be good ones and I would feel like a princess again, even if only for a little while. I almost wish I would have settled for that. At least then the sadness would have ended in occassion for a while. Now I’m just sad all the time. He lied about his past, and told half truths, but I made excuses. I know all of this. I wasn’t perfect either and I take the blame so much for not being perfect enough for him. I feel like someone else will be despite me doing everything I could and being the best version I could have been for him. It wasn’t enough.


                  • You are Perfectly You & he is a just a lying cheating Narcissist and Narcs are never satisfied or happy with anyone. I grieved too because the good times were so good,I was treated like a Princess showered with beautiful gifts and then bam I come home to find him with another woman. He was also married when I met him too, but according to him they were just good friends, well I learned quickly that any man or woman that cheats on their partner for you will cheat on you too. My point is you deserve to be truly Happy & Loved. The whole time my ex was playing the part of devoted husband to me he had at least 1 affair if not 2 going on at the same time. It does take time to unwind from their web of lies but try to love yourself every day & know that you deserve a Real Man who will Love, Honor & Cherish you for all of Eternity. That is how True Unconditional Love is, never ending. Take Care of You


                  • It takes time to recover from being in love with a narcissist, it’s a complex, complicated and confusing experience. Try to be gentle with yourself, and let yourself heal at your own pace. It is similar to experiencing the death of a loved one, and the phases are you will go through are like the 5 stages of grief – Denial, Anger, Bargaining, Depression, Acceptance.

                    We all tend to be so very hard on ourselves in life, and are sometimes kinder to others, even those who abuse us, than we are to ourselves.

                    Maybe you made some mistakes, that’s normal and natural, you’re human, and we all make mistakes, it’s part of how we learn it’s part of living life. It’s worth self-reflecting, and seeing where you might have done something wrong, made an error, but it does not make everything your fault, it certainly doesn’t justify someone else’s abusive behaviour and treatment of you. You did not make them treat you badly. If they’re an adult, they are responsible for the way they behave, just as you are responsible for the way you behave – if they blame you for the way they’re behaving, they’re being narcissistic and making everyone else responsible for them, everyone else is the problem.

                    He treated you the way he treated you because he did that – you did not make him do that.

                    Even when ‘provoked’ by others we still have a choice in how we react to that ‘provocation’. If it is indeed a provocation.

                    Those who love us, know us, even strangers, understand what it is like to be human and cut us slack when we make mistakes or behave a bit badly, because they need slack cut as they are human too.

                    A narcissist, on the other hand, doesn’t acknowledge that they’re human (unless using it as an excuse to absolve themselves) or that we’re human. They don’t really understand what being human is about, they have no empathy, and are quick to point out our faults, flaws, and what they think we’ve done wrong, then they use it against us to excuse their behaviour, to blame others, and to never take responsibility for anything they do or say.

                    We all tend to think it’s our fault that the narcissist was mean to us, and we tend to be grateful when they’re nice to us and think they’re doing us a favour when they ‘love’ us – usually because they’ve made it clear that we’re not lovable and they’re a hero for loving such an unlovable being as we are.

                    Is it your narcissist who made you think 33 was somehow a reason to settle for less than you deserve where love is concerned? Or is it society and its bizarre notions which it sometimes pretends is fact that love has some sort age-related due date. Or is it because you want to have children and feel that your clock is ticking, Don’t make decisions about love based on a ticking clock. And if possible avoid having children with a narcissist because that comes with a whole new set of problems that anyone who has had a child with a narcissist, or any child of a narcissist, will tell you is an even more painful nightmare and lesson on what love isn’t.

                    You’re in the prime of your life, don’t let anyone, including yourself, tell you otherwise. And falling in love has no due date. The older you get the more your chances increase of finding a deeper and more meaningful connection of love with another because our relationship with ourselves deepens as we get older and we know ourselves better. You will meet someone who thinks you’re their earth, ocean and universe, and you will feel the same way about them, and you will be very relieved that you did no settle for this man who makes you feel so awful about yourself and so hopeless about love. You will find what you are looking for, probably when you least expect it.

                    I think you might find this blog worth reading, it’s by someone going through a similar experience, sharing their journey and heartache, and their posts are deeply moving –

                    Part of what you’re experiencing at the moment is a version of Stockholm Syndrome.

                    From Wiki – “Stockholm syndrome, or capture-bonding, is a psychological phenomenon in which hostages express empathy and sympathy and have positive feelings toward their captors, sometimes to the point of defending and identifying with the captors.”

                    This is an article about the role Stockholm Syndrome plays in a relationship with a narcissist –

                    An extract from that:

                    “2. Intermittent good-bad treatment:

                    The second feature of traumatic bonding is that the narcissist uses “good and bad treatment” intermittently. At times the abuser maltreat the victim to the point of terrorizing them, and then at other times they show them acts of kindness; showering the victim with love, care and attention, even promising to never abuse them again. This has the effect of subjecting the victim to alternating states of emotions where they go through periods of aversive/negative arousal, and the relief/release associated with aversive arousal (Dutton/Painter), thus, alternating between good and bad conditions. This triggers the victim into a regressive mode, and they return to childish infantile patters of behaviour of bonding with the aggressor.”

                    It is difficult to let go of a relationship with a narcissist, especially as even if they discard you they don’t let you go, they don’t want you to ever get over them, they actually want you to pine away yearning for them for the rest of your life. If you never found love again and died of a broken heart that would be a massive boost to their ego.

                    Someone else is not going to be better than you or have a better go of working things out than you did. The problem is not you, it’s the narcissist and they bring that with them wherever they go. He’ll do what he did with you in his next relationship. Narcissists are never satisfied, nothing and no one is ever good enough for them, they always start out living the dream and it always turns into a nightmare. However, they do like to show off their new love and rub the faces of their old loves in the bliss of their new relationship (they like to triangulate – set people up against each other, while they enjoy the drama they’ve created). You can pretty much countdown to the moment that their new love goes sour. Narcissists tend to have a set pattern which they follow, and it’s the same thing over and over again and again. They do the same thing hoping for different results, they discard people and get new ones hoping that the new person will cure them and solve everything for them – but the problem isn’t other people, it’s them, and they never change.

                    It will take time for you to get over your narcissist. When narcissists are good they are very very good at embodying our idealistic fantasies of what love should be. If your ideal of perfect romantic love is based on romance novels or fairy tales, then a narcissist will find you attractive because they want to be a hero, a knight in shining armor, Mr. Darcy, and particularly in the initial stages of the relationship they will appear to be exactly that – the perfect lover, hero.

                    It’s not so much your narcissist who you miss, love, have feelings for, at this point so much as it is your fantasy of love.

                    Your narcissist embodied your fantasy for awhile, which is partly why you fell in love with him. He seemed to make your beautiful dreams of love come true. But he is not who you thought he was, he’s not that hero, he is not the dream come true – he’s the person who treated you badly and dumped you when he thought he no longer needed you. A true love would not treat you the way that he has. He is the nightmare, the flip side of the dream come true. He’s the wicked witch who offers you a poisoned apple, and with one bite that toxin makes you lose all your dreams which he steals away from you.

                    A part of your depression is anger that when the fantasy love bubble burst your narcissist destroyed your ideal dream of love which inspired you. He’s stolen your inner sunshine and left you in a cold, dark place. He’s left you feeling that you will never find true love, and that perhaps you don’t deserve it, perhaps you should just settle for him because you’re never going to find anyone better and no one is ever going to love you like he did. That’s not true at all, and deep down you know it, but it seems true because your narcissist has sucked you into his reality which is dark, dreary, depressing and hopeless.

                    It’s one thing to know something intellectually, to do the research, read all about narcissists and how they affect you, to realise what he has done to you, what he is really like, and to have a concept of how a relationship with a narcissist works and doesn’t work. However, it takes longer to understand it on other levels of being, because the emotions, feelings need more time to adjust and figure things out, undo the knots which have been tied up inside of you, and recover from the damage which he has inflicted on your psyche.

                    Your mind knows things, but your heart and soul need more time to know them.

                    This experience will actually deepen your connection with yourself, the healing process requires that you get to know yourself better, have a closer and more intimate relationship with yourself. The more you know about yourself, the more you give yourself love, understanding, compassion and care, the more you will attract to you the love which is right for you.

                    He’s broken your heart, destroyed your dream of love… that hurts like hell and the pain can make you feel too shattered to ever live again, but, that broken heart and destroyed dream of love are a curse which yields gifts, this experience will fertilise a deeper experience. You will find love again, and when you do it will be richer, more fulfilling and satisfying because you now know more about what your heart truly desires and deserves. Respect, caring, understanding, and to be valued as the beautiful being that you are.

                    You will never get that with a narcissist and neither will anyone else – narcissists are incapable of genuine love, it’s part of their wound, they don’t know how to love, they only know how to mimic love and can’t keep that consistent because it’s a fragile illusion – thus they go from treating you like a princess one minute to treating you like dirt on their shoes the next minute.

                    Their version of love is intertwined with hate, wounding, pain, and fear. They always make of love a quest which their ‘loved ones’ have to undertake, you’re always trying to win their love, and whatever you do is never quite good enough, you must do more, be better, prove your love to them (by putting up with their abuse and loving them still, perhaps more because they treat you badly), but everything you do is wrong, your love is not giving them what they want from it. They’re an pit of endless need which eats you up, sucks you dry, then gets mad at you for being eaten up and sucked dry, which is when they throw you away, but no one else is allowed to have you once they’ve had you, so they never let you go.

                    Even though it doesn’t feel like it at the moment, you’re going to be fine, your hope will rise again, your dreams will return to you, stronger than before, and you will find the love which you deserve, one that will be a pleasure to experience, and will nourish your heart and soul.

                    Take good care of yourself!


                    • Everything you said described everything I feel and the relationship to a T. I am going to trust you, that my future is brighter bc of this experience. Your reason why makes so much sense.
                      The reason I feel that BC I’m 33, its too late partly goes back to him. I have three children of my own, but have never been married. He made me think there was something wrong w me BC I haven’t ever been married, whereas he was married for 13 years. I guess that made him more normal than me. I didn’t think, before him, that it was hopeless, but now I feel like I it is my fault and I’m unlovable for all the reasons he told me I was (in between telling me why I was so great and perfect for him).

                      Thank you for your understanding and responding to me again. I feel such validation reading your responses to me, BC and everything you wrote is EXACTLY how I feel, how he made me feel and what I went through. It’s validation and I need that so much right now in order to believe he will do it the next and it wasn’t just me.

                      From the bottom of my heart, thank you.


                    • A rule of thumb when going over what a narcissist has told you is to remember that:

                      a) They’re always talking about themselves, even when they seem to be talking about you – in fact they reveal more about themselves when they’re talking about you or others because they think they’re safe. It’s a diversion from self tactic designed to protect their fragile self.

                      b) They’re hypocrites and live by double-standards. They’re always telling others what to do but they don’t live by their rules. They tell you to be kind, while being unkind. They talk the talk but rarely if ever walk the talk. They often think talking the talk is walking it. If they said it then they did it, it doesn’t matter if they haven’t done it.

                      c) They criticise others to compliment themselves. Telling you what’s wrong with you makes them feel right. They gain from your pain. Build themselves up by putting you down.

                      d) They’re full of shit, talk out of their asses, but think their shit is pearls and the sun shines out of their a-hole.

                      I grew up with two narcissists who were married. They were both very proud of maintaining their marriage vows (except they didn’t actually do that at all). The way they did marriage was bondage of the sado-masochistic sort.

                      Your narcissist is using marriage as a status symbol (narcissists use everything and everyone as a marker for their identity and status), he thinks he’s better than you because he was married – How did his marriage work out then?

                      You’ve never been married, but you have 3 children – I’m sure your children love you very much and you love them (being able to love others is a big portion of being lovable), and the relationship you have with them is fulfilling, nurturing, and bursting with all kinds of love. If you want to gauge your lovability, there is no better way to do that than by observing your relationship with your children. Children are honest in love.

                      So, if we total up the score in this strange competition (the kind of competition narcissists are always forcing us to enter, and lose because they’ve rigged it so that they will win) of lovability based on being married or not. Seems to me you’re the outright winner.

                      When he made you feel unlovable – it’s not you who is unlovable, it’s him, that’s how he feels. Narcissists are always passing their wound onto others. That’s his wound, not yours, but he tried to convince you that it was yours.

                      It’s worth exploring what he has stirred up for you, as sometimes what a narcissist does to us shows us where we need to explore ourselves a bit more deeply to understand our own story. Sometimes when they pass their wound onto us, it happens to coincide with a wound of our own, and the pain lets us know where we need to apply healing.

                      Maybe the healing you need is to look at those around you, like your children, and see how much they love you, how much you love them, and accept the gifts which that love brings to you.

                      Loving a narcissist can be the agony and the ecstasy which opens our eyes and heart up to what truly matters for us. Their love only lasts for a short spell as a magnificent magical carriage before it turns into a pumpkin. But thanks to that experience, and realising that the narcissistic kind of love is a shallow pleasure which yields pain, we find something far deeper and more meaningful.

                      Narcissists, in some ways, teach us how to love ourselves, because the damage they cause to us forces us to go within and find our strength, find our inner fire, and use our love to heal ourselves, and in doing that we learn to love ourselves more than we did before, deeper and wiser.

                      That’s one of the reasons you will be fine. 🙂


  7. I’ll just act a bit frosty with him from now on. I deserve better. I wouldn’t normally accept being led on by a male friend. So why should it be any different for HIM? He failed to win me over. And he knows it. He will have to go find a new team member. I’m too intelligent to have him as a friend anymore. His mum will probably keep stroking his ego, while not knowing she’s given birth to a true con man. He loves younger women. He shouldn’t think he’s won me over. He can go jump off a very high bridge for all I care.


    • Thank you for sharing 🙂

      Yep, I do the frosty thing too with narcissists. Once you identify someone as a narcissist detaching from them is really the only way to go because they’re just going to keep doing what they’re doing, and they’ll never appreciate your side of things. There is not much point in being warm and caring. However sometimes they are oblivious to your frosty, they don’t get the message at all, in fact sometimes they like you even more for it. You become a challenge or their ideal friend. It’s very weird. A non-narcissist would totally understand frosty, whereas a narcissist doesn’t always get the usual social cues.

      Tell a narcissist to go eff themselves and they might suddenly find you intensely attractive and up their game to seduce you.

      I’m of the opinion that narcissists are created not born that way, therefore I would hazard a guess that he became a ‘con artist’ to please his mother. He couldn’t be himself as a child because his mother needed him to be who she wanted him to be for her. He’s still stuck in that pattern.

      This is worth a read – – as is this –

      Best wishes, take good care of yourself!


      • It’s mad how you use the word NEVER for everyone like NOBODY can change.
        Anyone can change its just a matter of who actually wants to find their own damn problems and fix them without being called the N word..
        And this whole thing about “forgive but don’t forget” is not’s just another way to hold resentment without trying to look bitter about it no?


        • Thank you for sharing 🙂

          From the sounds of it someone you care about and/or whose opinion matters to you because it affects you personally has accused you of being a narcissist.

          Since you used the word ‘bitter’ I’m hazarding a guess that the person who accused you of being a narcissist is female as that word is more commonly used in connection with females rather than males.

          Unfortunately ‘narcissist’ is a popular accusation of the moment due to narcissists being a hot trending topic. Most people who get accused of being a narcissist are probably not a narcissist but they have annoyed whoever is accusing them enough to get accused in this manner.

          If someone is upset enough with you to accuse you of being a narcissist (and they’ve been researching the topic online, therefore have lots of online gathered ammo) trying to reason with them from a logical standpoint isn’t going to work and will only upset them even more – which will frustrate you even more than you were when they first accused you of being a narcissist. They’re upset which means they’re in pain – people in pain don’t want to be ‘reasoned with logically’ they want to be heard, listened to (they don’t want to listen to you tell them they’re wrong and then list why they’re wrong), they want to have their pain acknowledged because their pain is doing the thinking, feeling, and the talking for them.

          I’m sure you’ve been in pain yourself (this situation which prompted you to comment on an old post from 2013 on a stranger’s blog is most likely causing you pain), you’ve been mad at people who you feel have hurt you, who have upset you, and have perhaps found it hard to forgive and forget at the time because you were in pain and they didn’t seem to understand how hurt you were or what they had done to you… so you know what it’s like and therefore can understand when someone else is in the same position. Your focus is on your side of the story rather than their side of the story… but their focus is on their side of the story rather than yours.

          If someone has accused you of being a narcissist, rather than get stuck on the ‘narcissist’ part of their accusation (which is informative – more informative about them and their status rather than you and your status) it might be more productive to figure out why and how they came to this conclusion. How did things between the two of you get to this point?

          A series of articles worth checking out if you’re genuinely interested in trying to resolve this:

          If we want to resolve a problem which someone else has with us we usually need to understand what their problem is and that is done by hearing them out – and attempting to do so without interrupting them to defend ourselves, which can be rather challenging if they’re angry at us. When someone is angry at us we tend to revert to defensive strategies to protect ourselves from them, our survival mode kicks in, those defensive strategies may include offensive tactics like pointing out what’s wrong with them because they’re pointing out what’s wrong with us – this often ends up aggravating them because they feel that we’re not listening to them, not acknowledging the grief which they have with us. They may think we’re justifying something they feel can’t be justified. Or they may think we’re diminishing what is very important to them – like we’re saying ‘get over it’ when ‘it’ to them is a mountain which seems impossible to climb.

          I’m guessing that you’ve probably apologised to this person and done the whole – people aren’t perfect, they make mistakes, they can learn from those mistakes and change – speech to them and they refused to accept it when you did it. They ‘held onto their resentment’ and made it seem like a noble act on their part which is why yout hink those who won’t forgive and forget, or who forgive but don’t forget are putting righteous make up over their ‘bitter’.

          You would like this person to ‘forgive and forget’ whatever it is that they think you’ve done to them about which they are resentful.

          This thing which they’re holding onto which you did – did you do it or do they just think you did it? If you did do it, is it something which you’ve done before, they told you not to do it, you apologised and promised not to do it again but then it happened again… because perhaps it’s just a part of you as you are and they can’t accept that?

          What’s the ‘crime’ which they may be able to forgive but can’t forget?

          If you were this person and they were you, if your roles/positions were flipped, and they did to you what they say you did to them… what would be the outcome? Would you forgive and forget or struggle with it?

          You’re right people can change, and most people do over time because life changes us. Pain changes us and it changes how we relate to others – it can break a beautiful bond and that bond may mend but differently form how it once was. Sometimes people hurt us, they may not mean to but they do, and sometimes we hurt others, we don’t mean to but we do. Sometimes we mean to hurt someone in the heat of the moment, perhaps because we want them to feel what we’re feeling… and later regret it, are genuinely sorry and make amends if we can. That kind of scenario definitely warrants a forgive and forget. We all make mistakes, learn from living and change because of it.

          Sometimes people can’t forgive us or forget the pain that we didn’t mean to cause them… this is about their story not ours, and all we can do sometimes is respect that their story trumps ours in this instance because we don’t know all of their story we only know the part which included us in it.

          This post and what I wrote in it was written during a very stressful time in my life, my father had recently died and his death meant certain people resurfaced in my life – the sort of people who stab you repeatedly and expect you to forgive and forget so they can keep stabbing you and each time they do you’re supposed to accept it, make excuses for it, blame yourself for being in the path of the knife when they did a stabby motion, and maybe even act really surprised about it – I say, I say, I say, where did this knife embedded in my chest come from!?!

          But my story and the reason I wrote this post are irrelevant to you and your story, and the story of the person who may have accused you of being a narcissist and refuses to forget whatever they think you did to them.

          Being human is difficult even at the best of times, so are relationships – we’re all a mess of threads which keep getting knotted up as we try to sew together a beautiful fabric of an ideal image of ourselves and life. When those threads get knotted they tend to break and we get ever so mad – Mad enough to use words like NEVER a lot 😉

          Maybe you need to forgive and forget this person who is causing so much aggro for you. Forgive them for them not being able to forgive and forget the way you’d like them too for your sake because they just can’t let go of what they’re holding onto – perhaps they just aren’t ready to change in a way which suits you and your vision of your relationship. You’ve changed, but… they haven’t… yet. Or maybe they have changed in a way which doesn’t work for you.

          And so it goes…


    • Thank you very much 🙂

      I also use reminders to help me to stay strong when I feel myself giving in. The natural human tendency is to be forgiving, to forget, because we all make mistakes and it is easier to get along when we cut each other slack. However, with certain people what is actually a strength becomes a weakness. Some people take advantage of the good nature of others, and with those people we need to protect ourselves by remembering and not forgiving.

      Take good care of yourself!


  8. I too struggled with the purpose of why there are so damn many N’s in the world and why they always find me. Then, I took back my power. I forgave only after a long time of NO CONTACT. But I didn’t contact them all and tell them they were forgiven. I believe they live in Hell right now. To not feel love or empathy and only emptiness is the sacrifice of a life. To know you are the cause of so much pain but seem unable to fix it or get a grip on it, like going through life in a car with no brakes. Their gift to all of us, is PTSD (in many cases, which gives us an odd magnitude of awareness) and leading us back to ourselves, to loving everything about ourselves, everything they were contemptuous of, resentful of, blaming of, hateful and thieving of, rejoice! They did not win, we did, we are no longer numb and blaming ourselves, we’re alive for the first time. They go on to do it again, like groundhog day.


    • Thank you for sharing 🙂

      I agree, we do learn a lot from the experience of being in a relationship with a narcissist. It makes us more self aware, forces us to go deeper into ourselves, get to know ourselves better, and shows us how our relationship with ourselves affects our relationships with others. Perhaps it’s not the most ideal way to learn, but it is definitely effective.

      Very inspiring words, thank you!

      Liked by 1 person

      • Yes, well said. It is amazing what we learn we had denied awareness of, and then find out it is better to know everything we do, so we can change it, or at least change who we express ourselves to.


  9. I just have a quick question, my father and I have had a falling out ever since I moved out of state and married my now wife. Every year he would say something and get all on a high horse about things and basically just be a jerk and he would talk down to me etc. About three years ago he disowned me because I came out as an Atheist, then earlier this year he calls and says “I wanted to let bygones be bygones” etc. Because he’s getting remarried. Christmas eve comes and he starts insulting my wife and such, saying he can have my children taken away, etc. I went off on him and told him that if he wanted to disown me then disown me and that any further contact from him would be henceforth considered harrassment. Sorry got off topic there. But to your knowledge does my father’s actions fit as an abuser in any way or just someone not able to deal with changes?


    • Thank you for sharing 🙂

      It can be difficult sometimes to determine if someone falls under the label of ‘abuser’ as most often we associate the term with physical abuse, or extremes of emotional and psychological abuse, and if that is absent, or ‘not as bad’ as the worst cases, we may dismiss our concerns. If the person is our parent we’re most likely going to be reluctant to see them as an abuser for many reasons, one of which is that they’ve conditioned us to put up with their behaviour towards us, make excuses for them and blame ourselves for it.

      Abuse can be subtle, and many abusers fly under the radar.

      This is an interesting read on abusive parents –

      One rule of thumb which for determining if someone is an abuser is – consistency. In other words, if he has always behaved this way with you, then he is an abuser. If this is a one time event or a new and regular behaviour which is completely out of character, perhaps caused by extenuating circumstances, illness, a trauma, then the person may be being abusive but is not necessarily an abuser.

      Another parameter is how you feel when you are with this person or talk to them. It is impossible to relax in the company of an abuser, your survival instincts will be on guard at all times, and if you do happen to relax your guard you will end up regretting having done that, being angry with yourself for it, as that’s when they hit the hardest with whatever form of weapon they’re using against you.

      From what you have shared, it sounds as though this is an on-going part of your relationship with your father, with things getting worse, perhaps, as you have gotten older because you’re no longer a child allowing your parent to dominate you without questioning his authority. He’s still stuck in the parent/child dynamic seeing you as forever a child with him as your overlord/god/king/ruler. He refuses to acknowledge that you’ve grown up, are an adult, because that would mean for him that he no longer is in control of you, your life (which means he’s no longer overlord/god/king/ruler), so his behaviour has become more noticeable, the abuse is pronounced. He’s panicking – which is always ugly.

      From your description of him he seems to fit the criteria of a ‘control freak’.

      For more on that –

      A question which came to mind is – Who actually instigated the ‘let bygones be bygones’ offer? – as in – What was his real reason for doing it?

      If he stressed the fact that he was contacting you for a reconciliation ‘because he was getting remarried’, that sounds as though he was shifting responsibility onto his soon-to-be new wife. He was doing it for her benefit – which may mean he did not want things to work out, he just wanted to go through the motions of doing it to put on a show for her.

      When someone new enters a family dynamic they often think they can solve problems between family members and they may end up stirring things up and making them worse.

      He may have been doing this to show her that he’s not the one at fault in this situation, that he’s the good guy… which would mean that he would need you to come across as the bad guy. Thus he invited you to reconcile (making him the good guy) and provoked you until you reacted (making you the bad guy). He probably knew that you’d keep your calm if he only attacked you, so he hit you in your ‘weak spot’ and insulted your wife, brought your children into it, threatened your family’s safety, as he knew you would not stand for that. There is no way that you wouldn’t react to that kind of provocation, and your reaction was exactly what he wanted.

      When someone does something that out of order – he knew what he was doing, that it was wrong, that he was crossing a socially unacceptable line and that you wouldn’t accept it – there is always an ulterior motive.

      What he wanted was to appear to be doing the ‘right thing’, that way he can exculpate himself – he tried, it’s not his fault (it’s everyone else’s fault things went wrong) – but he didn’t actually want things to work out because he can’t handle it. He can’t ‘let bygones be bygones’ because that means giving up control. That he would have to accept that he no longer has dominion over you and your life. The very idea of that creates too much insecurity for him, so he regains control by causing a fight which gives him an out and a sense of still being in control. If you’re estranged from him then he doesn’t have to deal with how powerless your relationship makes him feel.

      He’s afraid of you.

      Now he can tell all those people who question him about why he is estranged from you, (whose questioning makes him feel bad about his public image, which then dents his ego, and makes him feel out of control) that you cut off contact and he doesn’t know why. He can make himself out to be the good father who happens to have a bad child through no fault of his own, and he can tell everyone how hard he tried, how much he loves you, and so on.

      Both of my parents played this kind of power game, and there is very little you can do about it other than what you did – getting yourself and your loved ones out of the line of fire. They will play it without you, in fact they prefer it when you’re not actually in their lives as then you can be whoever they need you to be so that they can be whoever it is they’ve decided they are, and they can tell tall tales which they repeat so often they actually end up believing them.

      You might find this blog to be insightful – – I have found his writing to be very helpful.

      Take good care of yourself!


    • Hi – thanks for being so open, vulnerable and descriptive of your feelings, thoughts and experiences! I could spend the rest of my life sharing same… it’s what’s going on inside that really matters – where Life really lives! I can understand your frustrations and resentments from your experiences with Narcissists – not being able to co-relate with them on a most basic human level. That said, I’ve read a couple of your links about the condition, and it seems to me we all have one or a few of those same qualities – sometimes temporarily in our learning journey, and sometimes for life. Underneath even that, I’ve come to believe we’re all doing the best we can with what we have, and no one knows what the other person has inside to work with. Being unfeeling or incapable of empathy or compassion is to me something to be pitied – that someone will never know to experience and share as an endearing quality of being human, not to be condemned or derided. Instead, what a gift that we have a capacity they don’t have. True, it limits the extent of the relating and sharing and mutual respect possible, but we all have severe limits with respect to one another, and as you’ve indicated, it’s best to recognize those and move on, removing the stigmatization from the situation.
      To clarify a bit of my own journey, I met an amazing woman almost 3 years ago that turned my world upside down. She is decidedly of a New Age type persuasion, whereas I came from a deeply fundamentalist Christian background, where one’s world is defined by “right” and “wrong”, being on one side or the other – with God or without God. Offence and forgiveness the main operatives, coming from the original sin of uncovering the distinction of right and wrong, which, I’ve since decided, is intended to be God’s camp, not ours. Coming around to really believing in all of my waking moments that Life is supportive of Itself and what It has made, forcing respect for whatever is unfolding in others as well as myself and allowing the joys of observation and learning, knowing as a result that there is a good reason for everything, is a universe away from where I was. Where there is judgment, there is no learning and understanding, and where there is no judgment, there is learning and understanding (my words).
      How to help Narcissists and sociopaths to access the qualities of empathy and compassion, I know nothing about, but as I related above, any major inner change surely involves revisiting deep decisions we made early in life that we thought were in our best interest for survival. And that in itself can be traumatic. :-))


      • Thank you very much for sharing 🙂

        That is an inspiring and deeply thoughtful view.

        I agree, life is supportive of itself, and if we focus too much on trying to label it so we can judge it we can miss understanding it, and learning from living it because it does not only work on the systems which we give to it.

        I think that the need we sometimes have to make things black and white, right and wrong, to judge and make things fit into that judgment is our way of trying to bring some order to what seems like chaos, and give us a sense of safety in a world filled with uncertainty. The grey areas between black and white, between right and wrong, confuse us and so we try to avoid them.

        It has helped me to label certain people in my life as narcissists as that gave me a framework to clarify confusion, but at some point it began to turn into tunnel vision, and that framework became a bit of a prison. Labeling those people as narcissists made me narcissistic and it allowed me in some ways to view things from their perspective, which led to an understanding that I hadn’t had before. Like you said, I reached a point where I needed to review decisions. Seeing in myself similar traits and behaviours as narcissists, has shown me that we all have within us the potential to take the path that leads to an extreme.

        What makes one person go down a certain path and keep going down it, while another person may go down it and then change direction.

        Perhaps life needs to experience an extreme through us to understand it, learn from it and then maybe journey in another direction. Sometimes I think we swing from extreme to extreme like a pendulum, large swings at first, then slowly our momentum slows and we may eventually end up at a point of balance between extremes where we see what unites as well as divides.

        It’s a fascinating experience to be human, to be alive. We live and we can also observe life.


        • Hi – (I think it’s Ursula?),
          Thanks for the insightful reply! I know what you mean by making distinctions and judgements as a way to evaluate our world and the order of things – I’m constantly still doing the same (though more mindful of it and responsive to it), although in my more serene moments (I don’t know when they’re going to come!), I can see with neutral eyes for little while, and my compassion comes out of the neutrality I’m in. I believe really learning this peace in every area we feel it absent is each of us’ personal challenge in life, and there are no shortcuts – it has to be experienced through facing our fears, and the best way we can love each other is to help one another face these personal fears to come out the other side victorious, and, as you say, make the better choice to learn and break out rather than repeat. I remember the Bible saying those who fear are not perfected in love (I take that to apply to all of us!)… I wonder how some Narcissists and sociopaths came to shutdown their sensitivities, if they indeed did somewhere along the line – I can see it as a response to a perceived life-threatening situation. As children from abusive households, I wonder how many would today be classified as sufferers of PTSD, which we recognize as a condition with observable causes and consequences.
          Thanks for your well expressed thoughts… 🙂


          • Hi Rob,

            Yes, it’s Ursula.

            Thank you 🙂

            One of the best articles I’ve read on narcissism and narcissists is this one – – it has a section which proposes an explanation for how NPD develops in a person and theorises that it starts in childhood as a wound which the narcissist can’t heal, and therefore passes on through their interactions with others.

            The lack of empathy comes from experiencing a lack of empathy in formative years. With many narcissists they’re simply doing to us what was done to them, and what they still think is being done to them.

            My father used to say that the way he behaved with people was often due to him wanting to do others first what they would do to him. He didn’t want to wait until someone hit him to hit them back, he wanted to hit them first. I don’t think it occurred to him that this kind of reasoning was flawed, as he based it on the past and the past kept repeating for him.

            Sometimes we don’t realise that we can change patterns, and we may reinforce them when we don’t intend to.

            This is also an interesting read – – it’s a look into the mind of a sociopath from the sociopath’s perspective.

            This is also an interesting blog – – the author is one whose book, Going Mad to Stay Sane, helped me piece together my own personal life puzzle.

            It has been theorised that personality disorders such as NPD and ASPD are caused by trauma experienced in childhood, during phases of development in our formative years. Narcissistic personality disorder tends to be linked to that developmental phase when a child begins to become aware of being a separate entity from those around, when the ‘I’ and ego begin to form more consciously. Sociopathy seems to set in earlier, during the earliest years of a child’s life, and may be due to abuse experienced at the hands of parents and other guardians of the child. And it may well be a primal survival coping mechanism. Although psychopathy has been linked to brain damage, particularly to the areas of the brain which control impulse.

            I read a book awhile ago which stated that while all of us can get angry (anger is viewed as an instinctive response to a threat) to the point of wanting to inflict harm on another, most of us have a switch in our brains which acts like a valve to stop us from acting on our impulses, however if this switch has been damaged by head trauma then when someone sees red they have nothing to stop them from acting out when angry.

            The recent attention being paid to PTSD as a result of abuse, psychological and emotional abuse as well as physical abuse, has opened up some very interesting discussions and perspectives. Many behaviours which we had previously not connected with PTSD are now being seen as possible reactions to a situation which an individual experienced as life-threatening, and may still be experiencing as life-threatening.

            My parents, who I consider to be narcissists (and it is just my opinion based on my experience of them), both had difficult childhoods, including growing up during WWII (in Europe). So there is the individual’s trauma and the trauma of the collective to consider. If say and entire country experiences PTSD, then the individuals within that country are affected by that and by their own personal traumas and personal PTSD. This can have a knock on effect in many ways on subsequent generations. Exploring my parents’ histories explains a lot of their subsequent adult behaviour.

            Narcissists seem to be stuck in childhood, and much of their adult behaviour is that which we connect to being ‘childish’. It’s as though they’re still children trying to define their ego, separate themselves from others, but they can’t do it, and they can’t get the perspective needed to do it because their eyes still see the way a child sees.

            This is a view of that view – – It’s titled – Why children can’t see what’s right in front of them – which is often the case with narcissists. Sociopaths, on the other hand, sometimes seem to have far too stark a view of what’s in front of them.

            Shutting down sensitivity is a fairly logical reaction to the harshness which all of us are exposed to in life, both personally and globally. I think in some ways remaining sensitive is a far harder choice, as you leave yourself open to feeling not just your own pain but also the pain of others. To be compassionate requires not only feeling the pain but also understanding it, accepting it as a natural part of the human experience, of life itself. Much ugliness comes from pain, but also great beauty too.

            The way you express yourself shows a deep and strong soul with the rare ability to understand the world as though the world was contained within. Very inspiring!


            • Hi Ursula,
              Sorry for taking so long to reply – I tend to jump around different things in my life, not spending too much time on any one thing – as if the intensity of it scares me! I appreciate your kind words – I take that encouragingly – I don’t naturally see myself as strong, although some who know me do. Sensitive though, I would say yes!

              Yes, my parents too grew up in WWII Europe, and it was such a different world then. Being efficient at physical survival was everything, often to the exclusion of oneself. I would not want to trade places with them.

              Musing over what you said about Narcissists and sociopaths, I often wonder how best to love these people, as people? Much of the natural reaction here and elsewhere is born of the pain and unspeakable bewilderment they inflict, and, realizing I, and maybe even some more of us, still exhibit some of this behaviour, and that some of my deepest moments with people in my life were when they spoke deeply and compassionately into my life around a personal fault of mine, makes me want to be a lover, not a hater. I remember at one particularly tortuous moment with my lady friend who I admired but could not understand how to reach, or become reachable myself to her, I said out loud to God – I want to be a student of Love, of Life – I want to see, I want to understand! Hopefully I make some progress in this quest…

              You seem a very lucid and compassionate gal, coming from a deep inner peace – you have a lot to give – I hope you’re getting the loving support you deserve! 🙂


              • Thank you 🙂

                I never expect people to get back to me, it’s always a bonus when they do 🙂

                It’s worth taking a break from something or someone when things get too intense. Breaks can allow for a natural balancing to occur, and sometimes things sort themselves out on their own, or at least a time out can offer a new perspective to come in. It’s best to deal with things when you’re ready to do so and not try to force yourself to do what you’re not ready to do (other people may be narcissistic towards us but we don’t have to be narcissistic towards ourselves).

                Where narcissists are concerned, I have opted for the tactic of ‘indifference’ as in not needing to ‘love’ them but not needing to ‘hate’ them either – with narcissists love/hate are pretty much the same thing. In fact they seem to prefer it when you hate them as for them it tends to = that they have your full attention (and that’s what they’re after). Love makes them uneasy (and when they’re uneasy they tend to lash out). Narcissists and sociopaths do not relate to others the same way that non-narcissists and non-sociopaths do. They don’t get the whole ‘love/caring/human’ thing, mostly they see it as a weakness which others have and which they thankfully lack (or are trying to eradicate in themselves). They see themselves as ‘not people’ but as ‘better than people’, so it can be difficult to relate to them as people because they don’t actually want you to do that. Some people do not want to be reached, they’re afraid of that kind of intimacy and how vulnerable it makes them – they can’t see the strength it can offer, they only see the fear it inspires in them.

                Living, being alive, and being a human is one hell of a challenge (everyone struggles with it, and tries to figure it out – hence all the methods offered through religion, philosophy, psychology, self-help, and all the other ‘how to be human’ options). Sometimes the best approach is no approach at all other than, like you said, as a student open to learning what your life is teaching 🙂


                • “Living, being alive, and being a human is one hell of a challenge (everyone struggles with it, and tries to figure it out”

                  I’m so glad you said that, Ursula! Seems so many people have no problem staying happy, and telling us how to do it, and the rest of us…

                  So many of my decisions in life have been fear based, and have always envied those who have little or no fear – they seem free. But, it also seems they’re a little cold to some things (making healthy decisions easier?), and I’ve decided I don’t want to be like that. I’d rather be sensitive, and suffer pain more, and remain able to understand others’ fear, and so be able to be compassionate, but still try to learn to not be fearful. Sometimes it’s too much… 😕


  10. What about the malignant narcissists that pretend like nothing even happened! No apology, no even admitting that anything happened. If you bring it up, they act like you must have imagined it.


    • That’s typical behaviour of all narcissists. It’s part of gaslighting

      They have selective amnesia, even for things they did or said only a moment before. If they can’t remember saying or doing it then they didn’t say it or do it. If you remember them saying or doing it then you must be mistaken.

      They never apologise. If they do say they’re sorry, they’ll add a sting to the end of their apology which blames you for making them do or say whatever it is. Their apologies are fauxpologies – false apologies. They’re sorry that you didn’t let them get away with something. They are sorry you made them look bad. They are sorry that you’re complaining and boring them with your problems, if they apologise maybe it’ll shut you up. Or they’ll apologise because they need you to do something for them.

      Why would they admit that something happened if it’s a bad thing that happened, when they can just pretend that nothing happened and you’re making a big deal about nothing.

      Mind you, when things are the other way around, they have a long memory of everything that you did wrong, they throw all the crimes (real or imagined) which you committed against them in your face on a constant basis, and expect apologies of a grovelling kind for the next five hundred years. They forget easily but they never let you forget.

      Liked by 1 person

    • its getting that bad now! I have met that type as well and I was nothing short of SHOCKED! my family scapegoated me for years so I already knew about the “she has mental illness/delusional/she is lying” tactic.. but for some strange reason I never expected it from strangers as well! from religious figures/leaders! I had one tell me.. I imagined my abuse.. he said the “holyspirit” TOLD HIM not only that I was lying about sexual harassment… but that it was MY OWN “FANTASY” that I wanted to drag HIM into!! the most horrific abusive thing he could have said! and I went to him for help… talk about projection or victimizing the victim! seems to me HE was the one turned on by my pain!! he tried to tell me NOT to be that way.. NOT to get upset when people sexually harass me… he made it sound incredulous that id even protest it! not only did I make it up (he was all over the place couldn’t his lies straight) but also… if did happen.. I should LET IT and not complain
      he was training to be a priest!!! people suddenly act this way too and that can shock you.. I knew him for years and he never said an inappropriate thing… soon as a male feels rejected (he never said so but he may have “liked” me) then they turn on you.. and hit you where it hurts! so for me it was sexual harassment so he hit me there!….. can you just IMAGINE your heart is hurting and you go to a male religious figure for help and they tell you “that’s YOUR sick fantasy youre dragging ME into and Holyspirit said so”
      its in this article.. they want to BE YOU
      so THEY are the “innocent girl”and YOURE BOTHERING THEM!!!!
      shocking just shocking.
      they will tell you its not happening.. and since it is.. and they cant get around their lie..they will tell you to like it… they STAY in a position as the YOU as “OK” but they CANT DO IT
      theyre in your seat
      knock them OFF


  11. Thank you for this post. I’m a beginner blogger, who was discarded by my narcissist. And I have only begun to start the process of accepting this truth but it is difficult at times to imagine a person can exist in this way, and that I have spent 13 years with this person. May I quote you in my next blog? I will be sure to add your link. My blogsite is if you wish to look at it first.


    • Thank you for sharing 🙂

      Please feel free to quote me, links are always appreciated.

      Understanding a narcissist is a difficult thing to do – even narcissists don’t necessarily understand other narcissists. In fact you have a better chance of understanding a narcissist if you’re not a narcissist because you have empathy and, if used intelligently, empathy can explain at least some of what seems illogical as we all have narcissistic traits and behaviours – with narcissists these are accentuated and twisted out of proportion.

      Spending 13 years with someone who is a narcissist is a long time to be in a relationship with and under the influence of someone who really doesn’t have a clue about being human. They hate being human, don’t understand it, don’t want to be it, and therefore make others suffer for what they don’t understand and don’t want to be because it causes them suffering and they pass on their wound hoping someone else will heal it for them. We often end up carrying their wound for them, trying to heal it… but it’s not ours to heal.

      You’re right about writing being healing. Sharing your story can help others with their story. Best wishes on pursuing your dream of being a writer, and on healing through writing.


  12. I ended my relationship or whatever it was with a man I cared about for the past 18 months. I know now that when I was with him – I was a different person. I lost my true self! I was walking on eggshells and felt like he belittled everything I said. It just felt weird. Why did I put up with his crap? I don’t have an logical answer! I was vunerable and fell for his charm! I believed in him and wanted it to work. Being with him was truly mentally exhausting and believe it or not I’m grateful I went thru this experience! I now fully understand the narassist mental sickness and all the red flags that I ignored! This experience opened my eyes to what I need to pay more attention to. I will never let any man treat me like he did! Best learning experience ever! I just need to forgive myself for finding good in someone who was hurting me and move on! Its been 8 weeks since I’ve seen him – I’ve had 2 meaningless text messages – but he has moved on. I accept that but it still stings a bit. I don’t love him – just cared for him and I feel more hurt that I let this guy use me. Any advice on how to forgive myself and move on would be most appreciated. Thanks!


    • Thank you for sharing 🙂

      We are often far harder on ourselves than we are on others. Forgiving ourselves for a ‘mistake’ can be very challenging especially when we may feel ashamed, humiliated, and feel that we somehow betrayed ourselves, let ourselves down, disappointed our expectations for ourselves.

      Advice is difficult to give because what works for one person may not work for another, and sometimes it can make things worse rather than better.

      If you genuinely believe that this experience was the “Best learning experience ever!” then that’s a good place to start where forgiving yourself and moving on is concerned.

      First – don’t pressure yourself to ‘move on’ before you’re ready to do so. Be gentle with yourself, you’ve been through an intense and painful experience, and learning from it takes time because life lessons work on many levels and each level has a different way of dealing with it, and a different amount of time which it needs to ‘get over’ something and/or someone.

      If ‘it stills stings a bit’ then you’re still learning from it. The sting is pointing to a wound which needs healing – what you need to figure out is where that wound is, what kind of wound it is, and does that wound connect to another wound from an earlier experience in life. Did this relationship repeat the pattern in a previous relationship in any way?

      This is worth reading –

      from that article:

      “It is possible to see our complaints about feeling stuck, or of not being able to get past the latest trauma, as the work of the soul binding us to our given existence. The soul doesn’t propel, like spirit; it feels the impact of events. It is easily stung and disturbed. The spirited side enjoys power, strength, well-being, and superiority. The soul, given to the pleasures of earthly existence, suffers its intimacies to the extent that attachment often feels like bondage.”

      It sounds like some of the wound is ego – you’re being hard on yourself which tends to reflect the ego’s attitude. You think you should have gotten over this and moved on by now, and you’re angry at yourself for still hurting, and also maybe being tough on yourself for having gotten involved with him in the first place.

      “Why did you put up with this crap?” – is rather an aggressive way to ask yourself why you cared for someone. Hindsight can be mean, it’s such a know-it-all but the only way we get hindsight is through a living experience, taking a risk, caring.

      You met someone who made your heart open itself up to them and invite them in. There’s nothing wrong with doing that, it’s part of being human and the will to love. The heart isn’t always logical – that’s the realm of the mind (and even the mind can be illogical, especially when it demands logical answers in matters of the heart). You fell for him, maybe what you fell for was his charm, maybe that was a mistake, maybe it wasn’t. Had everything worked out between you two then all would be well, but because it didn’t… you are treating yourself a bit like a suspect in a crime and interrogating yourself as though everything is your fault and you shouldn’t have been so ‘vulnerable’ – vulnerability is not a crime, neither is it a sign of weakness, it actually takes a lot of courage to allow ourselves to be vulnerable.

      You lost yourself – but you’ve found yourself again and are more appreciative of who you are because of it.

      You were with him for 18 months and invested yourself deeply in the relationship (it isn’t an ‘or whatever’ – that’s pain talking wanting to erase what happened). 8 weeks is a short time to expect yourself to be over the relationship and to have moved on.

      You say that – This experience opened my eyes to what I need to pay more attention to – what is it that you need to pay more attention to?

      If the answer is narcissists and red flags, you’ll exhaust yourself with paranoia doing that. Many people, especially in the early stages of dating/meeting and getting to know each other display ‘narcissistic red flags’. You probably exhibit some of those too. All humans do. And if others dismiss/reject you because you showed signs of ‘narcissism’ they’ll miss out on getting to know a caring and wonderful person.

      Don’t punish yourself and others for having fallen for a narcissist.

      I would advise focusing on self-compassion –

      From that article:

      “Self-Compassion has three different components:

      a. Self-kindness- where one is being kind and understanding to himself or herself despite failure or difficulties.

      b. Common Humanity- where an individual perceives experience as something that is shared. They see that they are going through an experience with others and it is not just an isolated personal event.

      c. Mindfulness- where one does not focus or over-identify with the difficult experiences.”

      Treat yourself as you would treat a friend of your who came to you for consolation and understanding after having been through a difficult relationship experience. If a friend had been through what you’ve been through and was being as hard on themselves as you are being on yourself, and was saying what you are saying, asking what you are asking – what would you say to your friend… now say that to yourself.

      The word ‘forgive’ breaks down into ‘for’ and ‘give’ – so be ‘for’ yourself and ‘give’ yourself what you need – which may be more time to ‘move on’ at your own pace, when you’re ready, not because you (or your ego) think it’s time to ‘move on now so get over it’. And not because ‘he’s moved on’ – has he really moved on or is he just putting on a show for his audience (as narcissists tend to do).

      Cut yourself lots of slack and relax – acceptance takes time, healing takes time, forgiveness comes when from giving ourselves the time we need to deal with what hurts.


  13. Thank you for sharing such an enlightening post…I have struggled with this whole “forgive and forget” concept…in regards to my abusive ex-husband (100% narcissist) who abused me at a very young age. When I look back at the pain he caused…I cannot as a human simply say I forgive him. I would never forgive a mass-murderer, a rapist, or anyone who hurts other humans simply for the sake of hurting them. And I think it really is a matter of forgiving myself and coming to terms with the experiences I had.
    Thank you for sharing 🙂


    • Thank you for sharing 🙂

      Something I eventually noticed was that those who repeatedly hurt me the most were also the ones who repeatedly insisted that I ‘forgive and forget’, and who put the most pressure of the bullying/emotional blackmail/shaming kind to do so. These people who insisted that I had to ‘forgive and forget’ were also the ones most likely to never let you forget what you’d done to them or to forgive you for it (because then they’d lose their ‘hold’ over you).

      ‘Forgive and forget’ has become similar to saying ‘get over it’, ‘move on’, ‘let it go’, and other prosaic things which people say to others without really thinking about what they’re saying. We say these sort of things to ourselves too without thinking about whether it’s practical to do it or not.

      If we need to forgive, then it really should start with ourselves – and that includes forgiving ourselves for not being able to forgive and forget. We’re human and sometimes we’re just not going to get over something, in certain cases we may actually be better off if we don’t.

      Be gentle with yourself, and don’t force yourself to do what you’re not ready to do and doesn’t feel right for you to do. Trust your way even if it feels wobbly 🙂


    • me too.. it is after al the narcs and the projectors and scapegoaters who are experts on using the forgive and forget concept (use you as supply/once youre all used up,discard you) as article said when you forgive its so they can do it again and then its your fault!
      I hate people who “teach you” to get rid of them! its SICK and twisted.
      forgive and forget is used too much as a cliché and those who say it haven’t met a narc yet!! and those self righteous people who say you should forgive and forget also wouldn’t last a day and also BLAME YOU for being WITH the narc… they blame YOU because they also couldn’t deal…
      I do not forgive either. not rapists and abusers who intentionally do so…forgivers have their OWN narc traits!!! they say they forgive for “themselves” kumbaya! its a Stockholm type syndrome they have and their forgiveness allows abusers to continue to abuse others! theyre in denial!
      and mad at us that we are not…
      that they are more scared than we are and also therefore RESPONSIBLE!
      (think parents who forgive someone who abused their own child then it happens again! they cant face it and you,the child are to blame for speaking out) common family scapegoating dynamic


  14. Thank you so much…. It’s been 5 months since all shit hit the fan and a little more than 3 months of no contact with the man I loved very much and spent one year of my life with… It was my first relationship after a 16 yr marriage that ended 2 years before very amicably. The first time I had fallen in love in over 2 decades and the first time I had a relationship as a mom….. The man I fell in love with is a narcissist who abused me emotionally and verbally , and tossed me out like trash… I’m trying to be really strong … I need to be … Thank you for your article…. As I read about forgiving myself for falling in love with him and enduring the abuse believing he was a normal human being who needed understanding and to forget about the anger I feel towards myself for allowing myself and my son to get close to him and his family(he never did anything towards my son I would never have allowed that) and how my son suffered when he took his family away without any regard for the children’s feelings when they called each other brothers … How I hate that I believed his I love you’s and plans , and everything else … all lies to keep me around… I read that and I started crying … it released something inside of me … The power of forgiving and forgetting the anger I have for myself… For my actions…. For being innocent … For believing… For being caring… For not understanding what was happening…. For falling in the trap, for bringing my son into it…. It’s very hard … But I will try …
    Thank you thank you thank you….
    They are monsters …. Real life monsters … I’m sorry that you, I and everyone else had to suffer in the hands of such people… I wish we hadn’t ….. I wish no one would ….. It’s like an innocent part of me died … And it’s hard for me to forgive myself for allowing that to happen…. But I will try…. I suffered a lot and learned a lot these past few months …. Thank you for the help….
    I refuse to be his victim anymore….


    • Thank you for sharing 🙂

      You’re going through an intensely tough time and experience and what you need more than anything from yourself right now is to cut yourself lots of slack. You need your own support. Sure there are lots of things you wish you hadn’t done, believed, etc… but you did them and they seemed right at the time. One of the greatest things about being human is that we keep ourselves open and let others in – sometimes we let the wrong person in. Sometimes the only way to know that someone is the wrong person is by letting them in.

      Yes, there are things which are your fault – but don’t use these things to beat yourself up, don’t abuse yourself. You made some mistakes, that’s human, that’s okay. You recognsied that things weren’t right, you are adjusting matters to resolve the problem of having made those mistakes – and this deserves praise from you to yourself.

      Your son will be fine, and you will be fine too. You’re both strong and resilient, and will come out of this experience with lessons learned which will enrich your life in the future.

      A-holes exist, it would be great if we didn’t have to meet them, if we never had to deal with them, but sometimes we need the experience even if it hurts like hell as it gives as much as it takes and eventually what it gives will be worth far more than what it took from us.

      You’re definitely not a victim, you’re a force to be reckoned with!

      Take care of yourself, and when the worst of it gets to you, just remember how much you have which someone like this man will never have!


  15. Hi I just ran across your article and I can relate 100% my dad died about a year and a half ago and while I don’t Know if I would consider them N’s I did get screwed over by his girlfriend at the time and family members that he didn’t talk to in years they took advantage of my grief and took things out of his house the same day he died without me knowing and to this day I still have so much hatred towards them and I know it’s wrong but I don’t wish them well in fact I hope they’re suffering! And people have really annoyed the heck out of me with forgive but don’t forget I will never forget nor forgive (I do think society or people just force you to forgive people even when you don’t want to)


    • Thank you for sharing 🙂

      My condolences.

      I’m sorry to hear that your time of grieving was not respected and instead was used to take advantage of you. That is really the last thing you need or want while you’re trying to process the death of a loved one.

      A death in the family does seem to bring out the greedy in certain people, as well as bring out all sorts of family members you didn’t even know you had or who haven’t been around for ages, they seem to see it as a free for all and want to get their hands on what they can before other people do. It can be a very weird time in so many ways.

      The people most likely to demand that you ‘forgive and forget’ are often the ones who’ve done something to you, they basically want you to let them get away with what they did and pretend they didn’t do it so they don’t have to deal with consequences – if you did to them what they’ve done to you and told them to forgive and forget it, they’d have a very different attitude about it.

      The others most likely to tell you to ‘forgive and forget’ are those who either want you to stop going on about something which matters to you because it doesn’t matter to them and they don’t want to hear about it, or they’re feeling holier-than-thou, this hasn’t happened to them so they can be that way, and if it did happen to them they would probably realise that forgive and forget is easy to say but not that easy to do, especially if what has happened is not something that necessarily should be forgiven or forgotten.

      I think it’s far better to be honest with ourselves and feel what we feel rather than contorting ourselves into some ‘society approved’ shape which smiles at those we hate and ends up with us hating ourselves instead.


    • I was in a relationship with a N woman. She is 45, I am 63. She is a very nice looking woman, no kids, great body. I am a successful guy who owns his own business, home etc.
      Her longest relationship has been 4 years or less. Every man cheated or lied or stole from her. ( according to her) so SHE left THEM. So when we met, One of the first things she said to me was, she doesn’t cheat, steal, or lie. (that was my first clue, that I didn’t pay attention to.)
      On our first date, she looked at my car and made a sarcastic remark as I drive a Volvo because that’s my business.
      FLAG #1.

      I was with her for 4.5 years. I was her fool, she had every line in the book. I thought that I was going to be the man to change her mind about men and she would love me forever and never leave me.(and she told me that about 6 months into our relationship)
      Turns out I was her sugar daddy, all the while she was leading me to believe I was her man, however, If I told her I saved X amount of dollars, she would always say she made twice that amount when she was a whore in Vegas at the chicken Ranch for 3.5 years. (Which I found out 2 years into the relationship.) I should have run, but what the hell, everyone is capable of change right?

      The things I did for her were ridiculous, and yet she always accused me of starting fights, Gas lighting, ( I didn’t even know what it meant and she was doing that to me) she accused me of cheating, and lying to her, which I never did.

      She never followed through on anything she said she would do.
      After a year or so,The sex wasn’t that good, she was mechanical. Her kisses had no passion, especially not while making love. (whores never kiss the john)
      You see, the mistake I made was to be with her in the first place. When we first met she came on to me hard as I was giving her a ride back to her work. I told her I had a girlfriend and she said, “That’s ok, I just want to have some fun” So at that time I became an asshole and cheated on my girlfriend of 5 years.
      And I got hooked, then she threatened to tell my girlfriend about us because she wanted her and I to be together, This was Christmas Eve.
      So I manned up and told my girlfriend and she left me, Understandably so. I deserved it, like I said, I was an asshole.
      From there she started to lose interest, she conquered me. I was no longer interesting.
      Yet I didn’t give up, I tried many new things to keep her interested, I kept thinking, If I could only find that one thing, I will have her, I bought a Harley, she said she LOVED them, I bought a helmet for her, The bike sits in garage, I never rode it with her and frankly, I don’t care if I ever ride it.
      I did it for her.

      She was a big breasted woman and the first time I saw her ratty old bras I took her shopping to get fitted and I also picked out a sexy one that I wanted her to wear. She wore it once and acted like she was doing me a favor.
      She would never wear Lingerie at all. My wants and desires were foolish. I should grow up.
      I took her on trips, paid for Every meal, drink, etc in our entire relationship. I was such a fool.

      I stayed and tried because I was aware that I lost the best thing I could ever have had.
      The woman I cheated on that left me. I had to prove to myself that I could make it all worth it if I could gain her full trust and forever love.

      Foolish you say? I am aware.

      It ended the day before my 63rd birthday. I had been telling her I wanted to ” Lock in” with her, make this solid, buy a ring, I wanted to put all in her name to make her comfortable, I put it ALL on the table.
      She said goodbye, I spent my birthday alone. The day after my birthday, she came back, we had a wonderful day, she slept over, ( no sex though)
      She got up the next day, and asked me for a 100.00 dollars to buy food. (again). Yup. I gave it to her
      Onthe way out to her car she said, ” me being here last night doesn’t mean we are getting back together”
      This was this year, July 3rd.
      I went to see her a few times to ask her to come back, give us another chance, she told me to give her some time, don’t call her or bother her. I did. She was testing out her new boyfriend so she would have someone to jump to as she did me.
      She has never even sent me a card after my mother died, she only texted me to tell me,” just know I spoke with your mother and she is happy”
      REALLY!!! I wanted to punch her in the face, ( I did not)
      she didn’t even like my mom, Or my daughter, (they were a threat to her because we are very close.)

      I am left feeling very abused, lied to , manipulated big time, discarded, angry devastated, and quite stupid for being with her in the first place and then Staying with her for so long! I didn’t know such people existed or would do that to each other and use “Love ” as a cover.

      I am vey emotional now, I am devastated,tears come so easily, I have zero sex drive, I have no desire to meet anyone new, I am having a hard time trusting. I put myself down because I feel I wasn’t good enough to make her happy enough to stay with me. And the fact that she has already moved on with someone new makes me feel so shitty and meaningless. she is so warm and charming and sexy at first, than the chill.
      I know She did me a favor by leaving because if she didn’t leave, I would most likely be still pouring mysekf into her and worse, all my money and life’s work.
      I could go on, but I am trying to put her out of my head and heart.
      I am so angry,,,,,


      • Thank you for sharing 🙂

        One of the things to keep in mind when going over your relationship with her is that you’re doing so with hindsight – hindsight can be cruel in its assessment, cold in its judgment, it is intellect without heart and understanding. It points out all these ‘red flags’ which in retrospect are obvious but which are also out of the context of the moment in which they occurred. It makes you feel foolish because the mind always sees the heart as foolish. Hindsight is angry with you for not protecting yourself and letting yourself get deeply hurt by a woman it sees as she appears to you now – a ruthless, calculating, manipulative and crazy narcissist. Hindsight can only see the story backwards, back to front, from the end to the beginning. It knows now what you didn’t know then and that gives it a harsh perspective.

        While it is necessary to go over the story backwards with the painful knowledge that you have now, it is also necessary to see the story from the beginning, working your way forwards for a balanced view.

        You’re a good person who has worked hard to build a successful business, you’re intelligent, resourceful, strong, powerful. You’re a family man who cares deeply for those you love, you look after those who are under your wing, protect and support them, you’re responsible, respectful and respected. You’re loyal, stable, and trustworthy. You’ve lived a good life and have always done your best to be the best that you can be. None of this has changed, you’re still who you were before you met this woman, only there is more to you now, you have more knowledge and understanding of what is called the dark side of human nature, both of yours and of others. You got to experience your inner asshole – narcissists have a way of bringing out the ‘worst’ side of others, they can make the straightest arrow crooked – and for awhile it can feel liberating, exciting, a walk on the wild side of passion.

        She was the embodiment of lust, desire, excitement, passion unleashed. Beautiful, charming, fun, and dangerous. A siren singing, luring the captain of a ship laden with treasure onto her rocks. She was an adventure, something wild which you tried to tame but not everything that is wild can be tamed, and you run the risk of getting torn to shreds in the process – that’s part of the appeal of the adventure.

        As much as it may feel awful to be so angry, the anger is healthy – anger is a protective emotion. It’s a primal instinct of survival. You’ve been violated by someone you loved, trusted, and with whom you wanted to share all of yourself, your life. You’ve been sliced open and your guts are spilling out and the anger is there to ward off other predators, to give you time to heal, and to stop you from being tempted to try once again to tame this particular beast.

        In some ways she’s your Moby Dick.

        Let the tears flow, let yourself be a mess, let it all out and don’t feel the need to move on until all of you is ready to do so. The recovery process from a relationship with a narcissist can take time, it is similar to the 5 stages of grief, and requires space to sort out all of the confusion.

        During those times when you tell yourself that you weren’t good enough for her, to make her happy – which is an internal conversation that comes from being with a narcissist because they plant this seed of ‘the quest to win their love’ in those who love them, they make their love a special trophy which can only be one by a true and fearless knight – keep in mind that the problem isn’t that you weren’t or aren’t good enough, you actually were and are far too good for her, it’s that nothing and no one is ever good enough for a narcissist because they live in fantasy, chasing after some perfect ideal which no one and nothing can ever live up to because if the narcissist ever caught what they were chasing they’d have no reason to exist. They like the chase not the getting what is being chased.

        They can’t deal with reality. They can’t appreciate the here and now. They can’t see what they already have because they can’t see what is right in front of them – they’re always looking over yonder at something sparkling in the distance.

        You gave her the world, including a great man in this world and she ran away because she’s the one who isn’t good enough for you and for the world which you offered her. She knows it but doesn’t want to know it so she runs away, on to the next man from who she will run away on to the next man from whom she will run away, and so on.

        This is a clear case of it’s definitely not you, it’s her. But it takes time to stop blaming yourself and accept that it’s not your fault – because this gives a twisted form of power when feeling powerless.

        I blamed myself for never being good enough for my parents – that was something to hang onto, it gave me hope that one day I might be good enough for them, and gave me power as it meant I had to do something to win their approval and love – took me ages to realise that maybe they weren’t good enough for me because they couldn’t see that I was fine as I was.

        When I was a child my father told me that it was my fault he never got to see me, he really wanted to spend more time with me but I was going to school in another country from where he lived (he didn’t want me to go to school where he lived due to a complicated paranoid narcissist story) and that if I wanted to see him I had to go to him. I, a child under the age of 10, with no money, stuck at school where my parents put me, was supposed to go to him (which I did during the holidays and he often ignored me when I was there), an adult who was his own boss, dictated his own travel schedule, had money, could have lived where I lived, and somehow couldn’t come to me. It took me ages to realise how ridiculous that was, I believed it for a long time, thought I was the problem, that I had failed, etc.

        So when you’re being hard on yourself, remember also to be gentle – things aren’t always as they seem, but it takes time to see things differently once we’re stuck in a perspective rut.

        You’re going to come out of this stronger and wiser, with added oomph. Give yourself the time and space you need to recover from the trauma, to process everything that happened, to understand the story, your part in it and its purpose in your life.

        My condolences on the loss of your mother. Remember that some of what you may be feeling could be grieving for your mother. You’ve lost someone who truly and deeply loved you and for whom you were more than good enough. Perhaps the devastation is more about this loss.

        Please take care of yourself, and be gentle with yourself.

        Liked by 1 person

          • Thank you 🙂

            It sounds like you’ve dealt with having an abusive father by becoming an admirable and caring father, and a generous and kind man. The peace you seek seems to be a gift you give to those who have the good fortune to know you.

            This woman was very lucky and blessed to meet you and to have you love her, but as with all narcissists even when you give them the world it’s never enough and they can’t see what they have until they’ve thrown it away, and some narcissists never see it.

            I just came across this article which I think is excellent, you might find it helpful in dealing with the confusion, anger and devastation – – it’s an in depth look at how a narcissist affects those who are and have been in a relationship with them, and also describes what is needed for the recovery process.

            I wish you peace.


            • Thank you, I’ve searched for it for a long time.
              You are truly a blessing to be here, to give people like me a place to go to tell there stories, and know they are not alone.


              • Ursula,
                As a final note, I have been trying to get in touch with the ex. via, phone, texting, e-mail.
                I had written her of my desire to be able to finish this in a “Adult like manner”.
                I was looking for a place to park my emotions, to validate the time sent, to not have to throw it all out in the trash.I told her That I still care about her, I was honest with my feelings. I fiqured it would be received with SOME sort of kindness.
                I was looking to hear her say “im sorry ” it didnt work out.
                I explained to her that our paths will surely cross again as we live in a very rural state and that being able to view each other kindly upon meeting, would be a nice thing.
                In other words, Closure. Adult style.
                What did i get?
                I’M NOT INTERESTED! I AM FINALLY HAPPY NOW FOR THE FIRST TIME IN TWO YEARS.! LEAVE ME ALONE OR I WILL HAVE A RESTRAINING ORDER PUT ON YOU.! (don’t forget, we were together for 4.5 years) And I Never went near her or anything to do with her.

                WOW, i thought. Gee I said to myself. Who was/is that person I gave so much of myself to?

                She has clearly demonstrated to me her coldness, her ability to leave behind whatever wake she caused and pretend it never happened. She bears absolutely NO responsibility at all.
                So I’m left with all these emotions and wreckage that once was my life.
                I am carrying this all myself, and I only wanted an I’m sorry, or maybe a kind word.
                I was looking for a crumb from the feast I gave to her.

                Good riddance to her and her demons, I’m done.


                • Your desire for closure, to end things in an adult manner, is logical and if you were dealing with someone who wasn’t a narcissist they would appreciate the gesture and have a similar desire, especially as you live in the same community. Another reasonable adult would want closure too and to end things on good terms if possible.

                  However since you’re dealing with a narcissist… narcissists are warped and twisted children dressed in adult bodies. The way she reacted to your attempt to connect and communicate with her on a reasonable adult to reasonable adult level is typical of a narcissist – she had a childish tantrum, shouted and screamed, threw her ‘new big love’ (which will end in disaster as all her relationships do) in your face showing off her new toy (which she’s going to break at some point), completely overreacted in an emotionally dramatic way turning something simple into a soap opera, claimed to be a victor and a victim simultaneously, then flounced out of the ‘room’ (narcissists can flounce in text and email, and on the phone) slamming the door behind her.

                  Threatening you with a restraining order has nothing to do with you, the way you have behaved or how she has experienced your behaviour, it was a dramatic flourish, it sounded great to her when she said it, she felt powerful as a hero fighting a villain, and was drunk on the drama of it. Narcissists are addicts of drama, and the drama escalates because the high gets harder to achieve.

                  She wasn’t always like this – this is where narcissists end up after they’ve cycled through the stages of their story and pattern. The person she was when you met her and loved her, and gave so much of yourself to her was different from who she is being now – you didn’t imagine it.

                  A narcissist at the beginning of a relationship can be the most charming, generous, kind, fun, loving, exciting person ever. They’re in the happy phase of their story and they shower you with attention, admiration, you’re special to them and they love being special to you. This is real (as real as anything is with a narcissist) while this phase lasts. The duration of this phase depends on the story a narcissist has written for themselves and for you – sometimes the story was written by someone else long ago in the life of the narcissist as the story is always a replaying of their original narcissistic wounding and their search to heal that wound. They keep doing the same thing over and over and over hoping for a different result but they always manage to make the story end the way it always does because they’re self-destructive ultimately.

                  If they have a lot of expectations for the relationship and set the perfection/ideal bar high things may devolve quickly as each disappointed expectation chips away at the happy veneer – you can’t avoid disappointing a narcissist because they get a secret thrill from being disappointed and will find disappointment even if you have met all of their expectations (they might be disappointed because you met all of their expectations).

                  Some narcissists have more stages than others which they go through before they reach the grand finale of them turning nasty and discarding the relationship and you. As they age they tend to shorten their story because they have less energy and patience, and they rarely age well.

                  It is intensely painful to be on the receiving end of the narcissist’s behaviour once they reach the nasty stage – they will say anything to hurt you, will use any thing as a weapon against you.

                  They can’t accept responsibility, to do so would bring a crushing realisation and they’d be devoured by the beast of fear which they’re trying to outrun.

                  Those emotions and the wreckage – that’s what a narcissist fears. She doesn’t want it, it terrifies her, so she gives it to others, initially hoping you’ll cure it, fix it, deal with it for her, but no one can do that for someone else even if you really want to do it and try to do it, so then she discards those whom she has given her fears to so they’ll take what she fears away from her and she can pretend those fears never existed. When you remind her of you, you remind her of those fears, all those parts of her which she doesn’t want to admit exist. She can’t pretend to be happy if you remind her that she’s actually a miserable person.

                  You’ll never get an I’m sorry or a kind word from her… unless she wants something from you, and then the apology and kindness will be empty. Even the very rare genuine apology and kindness from a narcissist can have thorns in it.

                  It’s very effed up and complicated.

                  Unlike her you can heal your own wound. It takes time, it’s painful, and a lot of silent screaming may happen, but you will recover and feel better. Focus on what you can give yourself to help you now. Find the small things which give you pleasure in this dark time and grow those. Find an activity which allows you to channel anger, aggression, pain out of yourself and into something constructive. Find something which gives your emotions and the wreckage an outlet to express themselves and therefore not leave you alone and stuck with them, but which does no harm to others or yourself.

                  What’s an activity which you like to do or something you’ve always wanted to try doing but until now never did? If you have a bucket list – do it!

                  Seriously the smallest thing can be a life-saver when recovering from the pain and confusion of a relationship with a narcissist. I used to move the furniture around in my room as a child, the physical activity released stress which I couldn’t release any other way – moving the really heavy pieces were the best therapy (at least until the next time I had to deal with my parents).

                  Maybe an old passion which you’ve shelved could be brought to life with the passion you feel now… build something with the wreckage.


      • she sounds like a bitter angry person. and im sorry to say she came to you soo broken.. with her former lifestyle.. its so hard to meet people who were “whores” as you put it and yet don’t seem repentful ..she still needed healing from that in my opinion… some are proud and brag about it.. yes that was a red flag!
        like you said “people can change right?”
        that was mistake I made as well.. for thinking my ex’s seedy past was .. immoral and people can “change” and I had hope..turned out he wasn’t repentful!!! incensed that I thought he should be and even took it as a challenge to continue in that behavior! that want to COMPETE with you not let you love them..
        its like how dare you feel my past was bad or that I need to “change”?
        its an honor and a GIFT from people like us to love the broken and accept a bad past …and see past it.. and let the person heal with us.. they choose not to and it hurts
        my ex was a porn addict.. I told him it hurts me so much.. he felt its normal.. nothing to change.. “I” had the problem!
        sexually broken people share your BODY and never think a thing of it
        youre the same as their past to them! the thing you hate/wouldn’t want in your life/immoral and you let them KNOW whats immoral to YOU and that should matter and is not an insult as you are WITH them and love them…
        don’t let anyone do that to you


  16. Hi, I just found your article and thanks for that. I don’t even know why I’m thinking again about this, and why I’m looking up articles on that topic, but here I am. I was in a relationship with a narcissist and managed to end it almost 7 years ago. The most terrible thing is that I feel like it shaped so much of my life that I don’t even want to admit it.

    It was a guy who found me in a great state for such a relationship, because I was alone with no real friends to talk to, or better, because I’m an Aspie, I didn’t really know how to even come by some friends and stuff, so I was in a constant mild depression for several years after some not very successful attempts to relate to other humans. So I was very naive and didn’t have any idea about how relationships should or might work. Great, right?

    To put it at least a bit shortly, there were the usual things. Jealousy, controlling, lying, stalking, threatening (also to commit suicide). He isolated me from the acquaintances I had and talked to, and also tried to cut me off from my family, but since I was 17, it was fortunately still quite complicated, and while of course this made me and especially my mother fight a lot, I still loved them. One thing that saved me was my piano. He wanted me to move in with him, and marry him (and not work or go to school) – but I said, that the piano would have to go with me, and because all our family played it, it couldn’t move, therefore I couldn’t either. Funny but true. He threatened me – said he would commit suicide, when I tried to break up with him. Then even without an obvious reason (he said he “just couldn’t take it anymore” – take what? well, never mind that…). He also blabbed something about going to the monastery. When I said I was leaving him, he was trying to talk me out of it, but placed no threats at all. Then he returned my stuff I had at his place, and we spent a nice day together, after which we never ever saw each other again. I felt happy it was all over, the extasy lasted for about two months before all the hell broke loose.

    When I was with him, I used to cry myself to sleep, feeling helpless about all that, but this was different, it was something I couldn’t ever imagine. I had terrible nightmares, barely slept. Also the breakup made me lose so much weight I looked like I got all my clothes from my fat sister. It was a sort of neverending agony. I felt like I didn’t even deserve to live, because of what I had put through everyone around me, most of all my mother. We reconciled and I finally found and saw that loving mother who would die for me, but instead of it making me feel safe, I felt endlessly guilty.
    Once my mum said she thought he wanted me to kill myself. I don’t know if she realized what powerful sentence that was, but it changed greatly all the coping process to the better. I thought: “You wanted me dead? Then better watch, because I’m not going to die, I’m going to live, I’m going to strive, and one day, you’ll hear about me, and you will envy me, because I will have so much of that which you can’t even dream of having. Burn in hell, and if the show’s public, save me the front seat.” And I fought through. And it was hard. And every success I ever had and good thing that happened to me was a point for me. I played a game in which he was the ultimate loser. Also my nightmares and recurring dreams found their patterns. First, he was abducting me, violently attacking me, even taking forms of my loved ones, whose faces mocked my belief that I could ever be loved. The next phase was more hopeful – I confronted him. I shouted at him and attacked him and told him everything I never told him in real, and it was some terrible stuff. And finally, I laughed at him, and he always left, looking very ashamed. After that I occasionally had dreams about causally meeting him where nothing with greater significance would happen. This took about 3 or 4 years.

    I have to say, that I hated him so much, that it was I who wanted him to be dead. I wanted to kill him, then I wanted to make him kill himself. But I kept all this inside and shared it maybe with two people, and after a long, long time. Another bad thing was that I’m extremely teachable, able to pick up ways other do things, and he was a manipulator. When I found out his secret, I understood his methods. One of my greatest fears was – what if I one day find out that I’ve become someone like him? I know how to manipulate. If I wanted to, I could smash someone else to pieces just like he did me. What will hold me back? Am I evil now? And this was another level of purgatory.

    After those years I found that I kept most of those things inside me, and that I only dared to hold on to pure reason, which was what kept me safe from being hurt. I had made up my mind about important things, invented a kind of persona, and floated through life. But somewhere in my head there was a little red light and a silent beeper that would, from time to time, shine and beep – “You don’t seriously think that’s all, that you’ve got your life sorted out at 23, do you? This can’t be all. There must be more.” To hell the beeper was right!

    I went to a summer music school and met a guy there. He’s also an aspie, like me. We were total strangers but got talking one day and I thought, wow, he reminds me so much of me… and that was the day my persona was shattered, and I had to leave it behind. I just didn’t need it anymore. He saw through me, even while we were talking normal everyday things. And at what he reminded myself me the most, that was his attitude – I felt, if I tell this guy to now jump out of this window, he would do it. He is this kind of lonely, forsaken and extremely loyal kind of person. But I never did tell him to jump out of the window. God or my conscience held back the bad guy in me and thus let me have probably the greatest friend I could ever wish for. The kind of friend you can call ad 4am and stuff, which you do because you’re in trouble, and not because you’re a bad bad narcissist.

    This story has a happy ending. I am happy. I live and strive and do what I love and have people in my life that I love and trust. But still, that guy is and always will be part of my history. Sometimes my memories bring me back to those horrible times, and I suddenly feel weak, and see darkness before my eyes and think about destroying that creature for ever. But once I calm down, I think – what a game well played. I feel genuinely sorry for the ultimate loser.

    Strength to all of you who are going through this kind of hell!
    I wish you all win this game.


    • Thank you for sharing 🙂

      What you’ve written about your experience is a deep and concise insight into the effects that a narcissist has upon the psyche of others. You have a very good and precise perception of the dynamic. You also have great self reflective abilities which are incredibly important when dealing with the aftermath of having been in a relationship with a narcissist. Perhaps it is because you are an Aspie and therefore have a mind naturally able to observe in a detached manner the workings of the world around you.

      A lot is said in studies about Aspergers about the ‘problems’ which Aspies have with reading social and emotional cues and how this causes difficulties in relationships and forming social bonds, etc, but these things which are deemed to be ‘problems’ also have benefits. I have Dyslexia and most of the material written about that tends to focus on the ‘problems’ of the ‘disability’ rather than on the benefits of the abilities which it brings with it. Our systems are simply wired differently from the systems of those who think they’re ‘normal’, and this different wiring has caused those who consider themselves ‘normal’ to label us and categorise our differences from them as being ‘abnormal’. But perhaps Aspergers is the new normal, human evolution at work… it’s just that humans tend to be afraid of evolving.

      Certain aspects of how Dyslexia affects a person who has it are similar to Aspergers. Part of the issue with social and emotional cues is that they’re often illogical and confuse matters making relationships more complicated by adding all these subtle layers and nuances, this intricately complex puzzles, which actually help people who are narcissists manipulate others.

      For instance, take the puzzle of the socially acceptable and expected ‘I’m fine’ response to the socially required polite question of ‘How are you?’. When some people say ‘I’m fine’ they’re not fine at all and they expect you, the person who has asked them how they are and received the ‘I’m fine’ answer from them to figure out that they’re not fine based on subtle hints they’re emitting – a sadness in their eyes, a dullness of vocal tone, a droop of their physical stance, a heavy sigh during of after the words have been said, a tiny driblet of information hidden within the misinformation they’re giving you when they say ‘I’m fine’. Maybe they expect you to remember their entire life story, everything they’ve ever shared about themselves (even if you only know them casually), to figure out that they couldn’t possibly be ‘fine’ at this point in their lives. They’re basically lying when they say ‘I’m fine’ but they’re programmed by social interaction correctness guidelines not to tell you the truth – because this could be an imposition and make them seem ‘rude’. You’re not allowed to confront them about their ‘lie’ because they’d get upset and self-righteous, and probably accuse you of one of the many things people accuse others of when they’ve been confronted about socially acceptable ‘white lies’ they’re telling. When they say ‘I’m fine’ they’re following a social convention, doing the proper social reply to the question ‘How are you?’, not ‘bothering’ you with their problems… but wishing you’d be bothered enough to care and ask them that other question ‘Are you really fine or just saying you are?’. It is so frigging complicated and yet… this is considered a ‘normal’ social interaction with social and emotional cues to be picked up, acted upon or ignored – all of which have consequences that affect this singular social interaction, which may affect other social interactions in many ways (if this ‘I’m finer’ doesn’t like the way you handle the ‘I’m fine’ puzzle with them they might spread rumours to others about you which paint you in a negative light – they might tell others that you ‘lack empathy’ and may be a ‘narcissist’).

      That kind of puzzle is something which provides a playground for a narcissist, to worm their way into someone’s life and psyche, whichever side of the social and emotional game they’re on. For a narcissist a puzzle like that = someone begging the narcissist to manipulate them. Narcissists love to play these kind of social and emotional cues games – one of their favourite versions of this is the ‘I’m going to kill myself’ game. My father used to call me on the phone just to tell me he was suicidal – then he’d wait to see how I’d handle it. That is partnered with the ‘I’m going to make you want to kill yourself’ game. I always had the impression that both my parents were hoping I’d kill myself so then they could up their drama status in their drama games with each other – not killing myself robbed them of the chance to blame each other for my death and adopt the persona of ‘parent who has lost a child to suicide and it’s all the other parent’s fault’.

      That kind of puzzle is social and emotional cue hell for an Aspie or a Dyslexic. While we can force ourselves to adapt and ‘play’ we will always wonder why what is so illogical is deemed logical by the ‘normals’. Why not just tell the truth straight up? Why not avoid complications by keeping things simple? Why choose chaos over order?

      So rather than see being an Aspie as a reason why you were a perfect target for a narcissist, I would say that being an Aspie actually helped you sort through the mess and chaos which a narcissist causes far more logically and effectively. The focus which an Aspie has is a brilliant ability and talent – not a burden or a disability. Your focus allowed you to cut through the BS and access the core of the matter sooner than later. You noticed things about your narcissist and his behaviour, and have great insight into it, far quicker and more perceptively than is usual for people to do. Narcissists often confuse people so much that they never find their way out of the labyrinth – you found your way out and not only that but have taken on board what you have learned from the experience, have analysed it, explored it, researched it both impersonally and personally, and understood it, applying your understanding to yourself, your life and your relationships with others.

      One of the things which stood out in your story was the strength of character which you have, and the high ethical personal code which you have brought to bear upon yourself and your behaviour. You are aware that you could be ‘evil’ if you chose to be (most people prefer to deny this option and choice, and see ‘evil’ as something only certain ‘special’ people can be rather than somethigng available to all humans), but you consciously choose not to be – that is admirable for many reasons.

      I grew up with parents who were narcissists and can relate to what you have shared about your inner struggles. I’ve also had the sort of dreams/nightmares which you’ve had. Narcissist inspired dreams can be the most frustrating… they also show the brilliance of the subconscious/unconscious to hit the nail on the head about the narcissist, the narcissistic wound, and how it affects those who have become intimate with a narcissist. I’ve also seen how easy it is to manipulate people, been aware that I could destroy someone really easily if I was that way inclined. I’ve also lived with a persona and experienced that conundrum of being more ‘pleasing’ to others because of my persona… of having the persona make life easier, yet also make it more difficult pertly because you have to switch yourself off and it is a slow form of the death of the real self. I’ve also experienced the shattering of a persona and been more relieved than distressed about it – freedom over being trapped in a socially acceptable straightjacket, held hostage by social convention which really doesn’t care how you are and will think you said ‘I’m fine’ even if you didn’t say that at all.

      So, why are you revisiting this relationship and everything it stirred up in the past and stirs up now? I trust your highly logical and focused mind to figure that out – I think you’ve already figured it out.

      To me it seems like you’ve come full circle and reached a point of closure. This life lesson in self mastery has reached its end and you’re going over your notes, checking your results, and refreshing your understanding, before moving on to the next life lesson in self mastery.

      Ether that or your inner primal instinct radar has picked up on another narcissist having entered your life (maybe on the periphery) and you’ve giving yourself a heads-up via reminding yourself of that which you’ve noticed before with your previous narcissist. The information which you’ve gathered from dealing with your past narcissist boyfriend will help you deal with any present or future narcissists. When the mind instigates a review it is sometimes prompting a refresher course because that info is presently relevant.

      However from what you’ve shared this sounds more like a reaching a conclusion and drawing a line under that phase of your personal evolution.

      Memories aren’t necessarily enemies even when they remind you of the terrible and horrible – they’re often allies and often have a logical reason for being stirred up. Find what stirred them and see what that is saying.

      It could just be that because you’re happy now… you’re releasing what once made you unhappy. You no longer need to hang onto that – you can make space within for something new.

      Take care of yourself!


  17. Out of everything I have ever read on narcissistic behavior this has hit me the hardest! Thank you! A million times thank you!!!!
    I will read this everyday until I can quote every word. You are amazing and have truly helped me and this Christmas I will give myself that gift! I deserve it!!! I am amazing!! God bless you!!!! And God bless us all who have ever loved a narcissist we will make it and. Always ourself better than ever!


    • this article was very eye opening for me as well… it put into words what I have been brutally experiencing my whole life.. I kept calling it “projection” and “scapegoating” as that’s what it is..but this article actually just put it into words… its scary as “they” seem to think they are YOU in a sense..they trap you with you… its your fault etc.. theyre the victim YOURE the abuser when they abuse you..
      they have to RESTORE YOU to “original” state and CANT so they are frustrated and can become violent and totally unreasonable. they want the magic button push version of you.. the happy joy joy they didn’t earn.( a supply). for you to be the CHRIST for them… no matter how painful.. abusing the HolySpirit wasn’t really the way to go… to use you as “supply” is sick…to think they ARE you is sicker…because you USED to care but now see abusers users..and “caught them” in their tactic…they aren’t you and cant be you.. if they could youd be happy! now youre not happy and neither are they so its your fault… we need to shake all this nonsense…its like a parasite jumping through hoops. making things out of time order (non linear/not chronological to make you guilty) then having nowhere to go with the evil they did.. so they come to you… and youre NOT there for that! yet it still burdens your heart terribly.. you want them ok… and they know that… just let them go…. send all back to their parents! give responsibility to ancestors.. NOT YOU….. youre not mom or dad… send them back…. make the other take responsibility for how that person was raised…. if you couldve done better (as their parent)so what!? they have NO right to get mad….


  18. Ima 52 yr old man,3 kids a covert narc wife,I read and wept….so many years of pain,…… many.There is nothing left,she killed it,the kindness the compasion, my self…..she killed all that suffer i wish you love and strength,I waited to long,now I have neither


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