What is The Silent Treatment ?

Are you a Narcissist?
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No…
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Then why are you taking the Silent Treatment personally?
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Why do you think that a Narcissist’s Silent Treatment is about you?
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It’s not about you.
It is all about them.

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Perhaps you’re D.U.I…or D.y.U.I.N… Driving yourself Under the Influence of a Narcissist?

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DUI of negative thoughts

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You should know that by now.
You should know by now…
after dealing with a Narcissist,
being in a relationship of some sort with them long enough to recognise that they’re giving you the Silent Treatment,
that the silence is not just silence…
regular silence,
golden silence,
that kind of silence which is enjoyable,
valued,
precious in a noisy world,
which is sought after,
especially by introverts and empaths,
and all those who need a bit of time to think,
unwind,
relax,
recharge,
etc…

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Quiet musings

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that the silence is not just silence…
but something more than that…
from your experience of interacting with someone whose Narcissism is unhealthy,
whose Narcissism is a disorder,

NPD,
and not just natural order which sometimes appears chaotic,
that nothing a Narcissist says or does is ever about you.
that the silence is not just silence…
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It is all about them.
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That silence is not about you… so why are you making it about you?
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That silence is about them.
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The world and everyone in it revolves around them,
and is as obsessed about them as they are.
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They need to believe that,
and so they do.
If they suspect that it’s not true…
Their version of reality cracks,
is in danger of falling to pieces,
it’s a very fragile entity,
and so are they,
they live in a permanent state of fear,
one from which they seek to escape at all costs,
and that includes sacrificing you…
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You don’t matter,
you don’t exist,
except as an extension of them.
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Everything and everyone exists only for them.
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According to them.
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So the silent treatment is not for you,
it is for them.
It is not about you,
it is about them.
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Why can’t you understand that?

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censorship

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The Silent Treatment serves several purposes,
for the Narcissist,
the last one of which is how it affects you…
that is an unexpected bonus which the Narcissist discovered accidentally and now uses deliberately,
but it is still not the primary reason for the Silent Treatment.
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It’s not about you,
how it affects you,
the effect it has on you…
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It’s about them.
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The Silent Treatment is a great big sulk.
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Why is the Narcissist sulking?
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Narcissists have many reasons to sulk,
the world keeps ignoring them,
keeps denying them,
keeps refusing to give them their due.
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It’s all about them,
the world revolves around them,
but the world refuses to acknowledge them,
their power,
their light,
their god-like,
Sun-like,
status,
as the centre of the Universe,
and so…
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So why are you taking the Silent Treatment personally?
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For several reasons,
one of which is that we’re all a bit Narcissistic…
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Wait before you jump to upset ‘I’m not a Narcissist!’ conclusions…
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Narcissism is a healthy human trait and phase of development, which we all have and pass through, and when it is in its healthy form of expression enables us to be proud of ourselves, recognise our individuality, our talents and abilities which are unique to us. Others may have similar talents and abilities, but they don’t bring what we bring to them. We’re adding our unique expression of life to the mix. That’s healthy. That’s healthy sharing and self-expression.
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We don’t think we’re better than others in a way which needs others to be worse than us, inferior because we suffer from an inferiority complex which needs…
..all the complicated bottomless pit of needs which NPD causes.
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When we think we’re better, it’s about proving it through positive action rather than through negative action. Creating rather than destroying, Producing rather than reducing. We actually enjoy the challenge of others being talented. If we think they’re more talented than us… we admire them without envy,
without destructive envy,
if we feel a pang of envy it is a spur for us to push us further in our own ability,
we don’t need to invalidate or destroy them,
our envy is admiration as inspiration,
rather than admiration as envy as demotivation which engenders dark desires to destroy.
Their ability encourages ours, challenges us,
to improve,
to refine,
to work harder,
to appreciate ourselves,
our voice,
and we love them for it.
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Through them we get to know ourselves.
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Them being healthy people,
them being unhealthy people,
them being people.
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In the Us versus Them…
we discover who the Us really is…
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And…
So…
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You can use your own healthy Narcissism to understand how unhealthy Narcissism works… and doesn’t work.
All you have to do is take your healthy Narcissism and…
warp it,
magnify it,
exaggerate it beyond logic and reason,
imagine the worst expression of yourself,
imagine yourself completely wrapped up in yourself unable to see anyone else’s point of view,
so selfish that your self-centredness blinds you to everything and everyone else, only you exist – devoid of empathy – that’s NPD.
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One of the most common reasons why we take the Narcissist’s Silent Treatment personally is due to empathy – a form of empathy which works in reverse.
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We’re not seeing things from their point of view – we’re colouring their point of view from our point of view.
We’re assuming that they are doing to us what we would be doing to them in the same situation and circumstances.
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We all use the Silent Treatment.

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Silent thunder - Rumi

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If you’ve never used the Silent Treatment…
you may never understand it…
it would have no impact upon you because you’re not tuned into to it at all,
you have no point of reference,
so the Silent Treatment would not bother you…
the only reason it bothers you is because you’ve used it,
you have a personal reference point,
you know why you use it…
so you assume that’s the reason that others use it,
but is it?
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Most of us learned the Silent Treatment when we were children.
Our parents did it to us…
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We had said or done something they considered to be wrong…
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Silence became their weapon,
of choice,
of reasoning,
of logic,
of sense,
of teaching,
a lesson…
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We learned from them how to do it,
and why to do it.
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We did it too…
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Relationships,
and the tactics used within them work both ways,
flow both ways.
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We do it too…
Because sometimes silence speaks louder than words,
sometimes silence says what we can’t say,
sometimes we can’t say what we want to say because we don’t have the words for it,
our verbal ability fails us,
it might betray us,
it might hurt someone,
it might hurt us,
it can be too complex…
pain is complex…
sometimes…
sometimes silence is the only way to express what we want to express,
sometimes silence is the only thing people actually listen to…
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Sometimes the Silent Treatment is a treatment for a problem…

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nothing at all

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We go silent when we’re angry, embarrassed, upset…
too upset for words,
too angry to speak,
too embarrassed of making even more of a mistake, a fool of ourselves,
digging a deeper hole…
so many reasons for going silent.
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We go silent for ourselves,
for others,
and then find that our silence has an effect on others,
more of an effect than words, than sound.
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Mostly when we use the Silent Treatment,
it is a treatment which seeks a cure in some way,
which seeks to be the cure for a problem which we want to resolve,
to fix.
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But the silence isn’t silent.

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Silence - Elbert Hubbard

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We want to talk things through,
find a solution,
a resolution,
explain our view, tell our side of the story,
be validated, acknowledged, heard…
once we’re heard, we’re usually willing to hear,
to validate and acknowledge the other side of the story…
maybe the situation was all a misunderstanding or something like that,
we want to live in harmony and work through the natural disharmony which sometimes occurs between individuals.
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Most people want to cooperate, mediate, understand, learn… to live together.
Equals, respecting equals.
Relationships flow both ways,
give and receive…
etc…
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However,
applying this kind of thinking and being to Narcissists…
Empathy… reverse empathy or otherwise…
our assumptions based on ourselves applied to them,
our version of the Silent Treatment applied to them,
gets us into trouble…
not with them but with ourselves.
we torture ourselves with our thoughts,
filling their silence with blame,
self blame,
because,
if we were giving someone else the Silent Treatment…
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But a Narcissist’s Silent Treatment doesn’t work the same way our version of it would work,
Narcissists operate differently from us,
if only we could understand that…
Our system…
has some logic to it, theirs is illogical,
has some reason for it, theirs is unreasonable,
makes sense, theirs makes no sense… is nonsense.
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Our Silent Treatment wants to find words to fill the silence,
eventually when we have found our words to explain our silence,
we speak and explain in a way,
to find a meeting ground where a truce,
cooperation between equals,
can take a problem,
share it,
and find a resolution for one and all…

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heavy silence

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The Narcissist’s Silent Treatment,
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The problems which a Narcissist has…
can’t be solved,
not by you,
or anyone else,
because they only exist,
in the reality,
created by a Narcissist.
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It’s all about them.
Always.
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Not about you or anyone else.
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The Silent Treatment of a Narcissist,
is only for the Narcissist,
it belongs to them,
they created it,
for themselves,
only they can solve it…
but why would they do that,
when it has so many accidental bonuses,
when it remains unresolved.
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The problem is the solution,
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Mind hacks for dealing with the Silent Treatment:
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1 – Don’t use empathy on a Narcissist.

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True Empathy

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Unless you can actually put yourself in the position of a Narcissist, think and see like a Narcissist, view the world, everything and everyone in it, from their point of view. In which case you would know their thoughts, their silence, is not filled with thoughts of you at all, but it’s all about them.
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Don’t assume they’re using the silent treatment the way that you would use it – they’re not.
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Don’t assume it is about you – it’s not.
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Don’t fill their silence with your thoughts – that is what they are doing, filling their silence with their thoughts, about themselves. If they’re thinking about you, it’s their version of you – which is not your version of you.
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silence versus bullshit

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2 – Enjoy the silence.
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Narcissists never shut up, their talk is their walk, their talk is everything to them, they use talk for everything, they nag, whine, wheedle, charm, complain, brainwash, badger, bluff, etc, and do everything by saying… they are afraid of silence.
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They are afraid of silence.
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If they’re giving you the Silent Treatment it’s because something has scared them into silence – that something cuts deeply.
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The Silent Treatment is their ultimate bogeyman defense – that something which made them go silent threatens the very fabric of their reality, they are terrified.
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The Silent Treatment – that something which made them go silent is less likely to be something you said and more likely to be something they said which exposed their very vulnerable underbelly.
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They are petrified that you heard it.
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They are petrified that they heard it.
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They are hiding from it, from you, from the perpetual terror which haunts them.
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The wound they try to pass onto you to you, to everyone but them – that is the reason for the Silent Treatment.
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They won’t be able to maintain the silence for very long – they need to talk more than you need to listen. They need you more than you need them.
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It is all about them.
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Their silence gives you a pause to redress the balance. Don’t let it slip through your sensory fingers.
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Trust

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3 – Their Silent Treatment is an opportunity to:
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Deprogram yourself from their endless talk which has caused you to doubt yourself, your instincts, your intuition – there is a reason why they never give you time alone to think for yourself.
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Think for yourself.
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Review what has been said and done. By them. By you.
Do they walk their talk or talk and talk and talk and talk until you think they’ve done what they’ve said they’ve done but they haven’t… and if they haven’t done it, will they ever do it, are you just living in hope that one day what has never happened will happen.
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Question them.
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Question yourself.
Why are you still believing them when everything they say do or are is a lie or a possible lie…
Don’t be afraid of the answers… why are you afraid of the answers?
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Know yourself.
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Know them.
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Know the truth – awful or otherwise.
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Know what you’ve been denying to keep an illusion, an ideal, a hope alive,
how much do you sacrifice or have you sacrificed for that?
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Truth versus Truth

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4 – Beware of the silence – When Narcissists go silent, they’re often plotting. They are skulking in their sulking. If you fill their silence with your own thoughts, they will catch you unawares when they break the silence.
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Your thoughts do not = their thoughts.
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Their thoughts do not = your thoughts.
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The breaking of the silence, of their Silent Treatment, may be a wrecking ball which destroys the walls of your house and so much more.
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While you were filling their silence with worries – What did I say which upset them and how can I fix it, make it better, apologise, make amends, make them forgive me, work things through, compromise, call a truce, etc – logic, reason, sense…
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Their paranoid selves were wrapped up in covering their tracks in illogical, unreasonable, nonsensical ways.
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They’re not sorry, they do not want to apologise or make amends…
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They…
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Have a very different version of reality to yours…
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Like…
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Using a bomb to blow up the kitchen to hide the fact that they aren’t the Michelin-starred chef they claimed to be…
That diploma was downloaded from the internet…
Those skills were stolen from someone else…
Invented…
Made up…
Pretend…
Why learn how to do something when you can pretend and fool the world…
Maybe they went to one class…
Maybe…
…but everyone was inferior to them = everyone else was better than them, actually willing and able to learn, evolve, admit they need to learn and evolve, willing to make mistakes, etc.
The teacher was a fraud = the teacher called them out, criticised them, saw through them, challenged them, exposed them, is an enemy who needs to be destroyed, is actually good at what they do, a threat, etc.
So,
they burned the cookies which they bought from the local store and were re-heating to pretend that they made them from scratch,
but they don’t know how to use an oven…
But they do know how to create a dramatic distraction with them centre stage,
the ultimate hero,
in a world full of villains,
to blame,
who are willing to take the blame,
because this scenario is too far-fetched,
so the impossible…
gets overlooked for the possible.
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Cognitive dissonance always favours the Narcissist.

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Suspicious golden silence

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5 – Use the silence.
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It’s your way out…
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If you don’t take it…
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If you don’t take the opportunity to escape…
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Ask yourself why…
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Don’t be afraid of the answer…
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The answer may set you free…
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Free…
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From the Narcissist…
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Free from the Silent Treatment…
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And the torture you make it for yourself…
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By filling the Silent Treatment with noise…
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Where does that noise come from…
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You or the Narcissists?
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Pause.
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Think.
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Freedom hangs in the balance.

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Your freedom…

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Think before you drink… in the toxic fumes of a Narcissist… before your drive… yourself under the influence of a Narcissist.

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Think things through… you have options, not just the ones which the Narcissist gives you, or which you think you’ve given yourself…

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Silent Treatment ?

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69 thoughts on “What is The Silent Treatment ?

  1. Thank you for this! I am using his silence as the start of no contact. I will not break and I will not go back. He may be plotting, but I am too. I am using this time to clear my head and make sure I never respond to another text or phone call. I do have to see him at work, but luckily we work in an office tower of 500 people so I can try to avoid him at all costs. If only I could block him from my desk phone too!

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  2. This is the most brilliant article I have come across in all my research about narcissists.
    I’m speechless.

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    1. Jennie, I’m with you on this. I am in the throes of receiving the silent treatment right now and this piece has reminded me that I can choose to not be a victim. Knowledge is power.

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  3. I have had 7 BPD/NPD cross my path. The one before last really messed me up badly and I took 9 or so years (self recovery) before I got involved with anyone. My luck??? Another one enters my life. This 7th one, more NPD than anything and although short lived, still very painful. I think I saw some signs soon on and once again, ignored the red flags for some reason. This one is gonna sting for awhile because I truly did love her. I have done more research this go around for recovery (found your site and several others) and have come to find I am an Empath, goes all the way back as a child. Just last night I emailed a well thought out email of letting go and got crumbs in return. Thank you for your site and other pages that are helping me along the way. You are appreciated!

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    1. Thank you very much for sharing 🙂

      It does take a long time, and most of all patience and gentleness with yourself to recover from a relationship with a narcissist. When you’re in love with them, the natural impulse of love is to give of yourself, to give them all your love, and love is beautiful when it flows, but with a narcissist it only flows one way, and eventually they turn what is beautiful into something which only gives pain and emptiness in return.

      People want to connect, have a relationship, fall in love, and in this world which can sometimes feel cold and lonely, we take our chances to make a connection. Ignoring red flags is something we all do, mostly because in the early stages of a relationship we’re not looking for what is wrong with a person, we’re focusing on what is right with them.

      We all have faults and flaws, we all can act selfishly or uncaringly at times. So if we see someone doing something which could be considered a red flag we may dismiss it as just a momentary issue, perhaps the person was in a bad mood, had a bad day, we reason it away because we all sometimes have bad moods, bad days and may be rude or not nice to others momentarily. If they’re not consistently waving the red flag in our face, which even narcissists don’t do especially in the early stages of getting to know them, then we forget the red flag and focus on the good things which the person has done, or on how good we feel in their company, on how great it feels to have made a connection.

      Since you’ve had more than one relationship with a narcissist, and seem to attract those with NPD, it might be worth looking into what perhaps attracts you to them. What traits or characteristics attracted you to them. This is something which I’ve found helpful to do with myself, it’s made me more aware of the part I’ve played in the situation, and it’s quite a good way to regain some personal power.

      If the red flags you ignored with this latest relationship are the same red flags you’ve ignored in other NPD relationships, then it might also be worth exploring those particular red flags, as it may show you areas where you might give your power away to another.

      There are some very good sites which offer advice to Empaths on keeping yourself open, yet strengthening your boundaries and taking care of your natural and deeply powerful ability to feel.

      There are also many articles investigating the connection between Empaths and Narcissists.

      I found this one very interesting – http://clearreflectioncoaching.com/the-empath-and-the-narcissist

      I’m sure you’ve probably read this one, it offers an intriguing perspective – http://www.thespiritualeclectic.com/2012/10/11/are-empaths-and-narcissists-2-sides-of-a-coin/

      Take good care of yourself, and remember that the person who needs you love and care the most is you. Keep doing what you are, researching and recovering.

      Best wishes!

      Like

  4. Reblogged this on Toward the within… and commented:
    This is a wonderful article that is written in a creative and clear manner. Cuts straight to the heart of the matter and doesn’t hold back on the necessary heartfelt words. Thanks to the author for writing and sharing it, because it was helpful to read on this day.

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  5. You know me Ursula, And I trust your input and insight. Tonite’s email; “I am full of anger just sad u couldn’t make the changes and become the man I thought u could be u have no idea what u have missed out on I’m angry u made me love u i am angry u didn’t give the love back I’m third of the hurt I wish it would go away.”

    As you can see, no remorse, responsibility or sorrow. Discouraging, but should be expected. Anger is the only, and entire main theme of her email. What I find interesting as well, is how it’s the writing of a child, as I’ve told her far before, that I cannot understand without punctuation, and proper pronunciation. I see total digression. Has she really forgotten, other than a role she played? Does she haves any inking about the whore she’s been? Never mind, I’m sorry.

    My Gad, I just want her to go away to her other sources of supply for the time being, so I can gather myself. “Knock knock” is coming farther soon, than expected.

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  6. Another great blog Ursula. I’ve read this before, but it’s making far more sense now. I truly enjoy how you write, and how you think. NC on my part for over 90 days, but the silence hasn’t been golden, because she’s contacted me every week, in some form or another. I give no response, positive or negative. She still seems to enjoy it though. No bueno she’s planning out another curtain call in the process though. :/ She has 3 other sources of supply that I’m aware of, and surely a fresh new victim, so do they ever give the freak up!?
    Namaste

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    1. Thank you 🙂

      Congratulations on your 90 days!

      She is going to keep doing what she is doing because narcissists just keep going around in their cyclical patterns. They play, reset and repeat themselves. Their story just keeps going and going… unless they get bored of it. But even then it may start again because they’re prone to delusional nostalgia.

      What makes the difference is what you do with yourself, the changes you make to the pattern which you have with them, how you change your side of the story you have with them. You can’t change their story one iota, but you can change yours. Each shift you make will alter how they play out their pattern with you. But it can take a long time for the process to get to that point where they go away and stay away. Or at least stay away longer than usual. They’re creatures of obsessive habit.

      Stay focused on yourself and your needs, your healing, your life, your goals. Zone her out as much as you can, and keep strengthening that. Each time she returns, use it as a learning curve, a test for your own progress of moving away from her and out of her trap. Each time she returns you’ll get the opportunity to notice the changes you’ve made within. So there is an upside to them coming back – you get to see how over them you are.

      As to if they ever give the freak up – sometimes they do, but often they don’t. Depends on how big a role they’ve given you in their story.

      My father hated my mother, he made that very clear over and over and over again in many in your face ways. My mother recently wrote a whole blurb about the enduring love my father had for her and which she still has for him. Now that he is dead she can make him be whoever she wants him to be, he’s her ideal partner now, and they have the perfect love. She talks about how long their were married (fails to mention the fact that for most of that time they lived in different countries and he had a long term partner who lived with him and cared for him when he was ill – which my mother refused to do), and he divorced her (using spousal abandonment, or something like that) – she overturned it after he died due to a loophole. And now they can live happily ever after in her story.

      So, no, they never give the freak up. But that’s just one example. And my father was a narc too, so he caused a lot of the problems due to his own behaviour.

      There are many stories online of people who have finally been able to get their narc ex to go away and stay away. You just have to never give the freak up on getting your freedom from them 🙂

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      1. Thanks again Ursula. Creepy about your mum. But does sound on point. We have a child together, so I’m gonna have to deal with it at some point. I just want her to go away for awhile so I can get it back together. Constant nuisances is what these creatures are. Personal question. When did you find out about your parents, and how did you come out of it so well? Her mum was a narc, so I got lost in poor parenting aspect, and had no idea what a narc really was. Ignorance, is not bliss in my case.

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        1. I know the feeling of wanting a narc to go away, leave you in peace, so you can have time to yourself to gather your thoughts and figure things out. I used to use the tactic of giving them whatever it was they were after, kind of like a parent does with a child who is nagging them. That only works for so long though, because they always need stuff and they get it by nagging, wearing your resistance away.

          The problem with wanting time for yourself is that they pick up on that vibe because it taps into one of their biggest fears and they really don’t like feeling as though you don’t want them around, so they often become an even greater nuisance and create a new drama which you can’t ignore, ergo you can’t ignore them.

          If you can figure out a way to get them to ignore you, that might get you the time to yourself. Asking them for a big favour, or do to something they don’t want to do, something which perhaps they boasted about being able to do but can’t actually do, then they often disappear for a while because they have a tendency to run away when you want something from them. Search your memory for the things which get them to ignore you, give you the silent treatment, or discard you, and find which triggers make them voluntarily go away. They are very repetitive in their behaviour and that means you can use their patterns for your benefit.

          Approaching the you + narcissist interaction is, imo, best done by seeing yourself as a parent and them as a child, a difficult child who never grows up.

          I sort of knew there was something odd about my parents very early on, however all adults seem odd to a child, and it takes a while to figure things out and put all the pieces together. The perspective of a child goes through various developmental phases, you’re probably at your clearest as far as your view of your parents is concerned when you’re a teenager, however you have all that other teen stuff going on which clouds vision. When you’re a young adult, you get caught up in who you are, and don’t focus as much on who others are. But as you get older you begin to look more at the dynamic of relationships, and who others are becomes important to get to know as it is tied into who you are. It’s a gradual process.

          I don’t know if I’ve come out of it well, I don’t know if I’ve come out of it at all, that’s still pending. I’m just me, which is a mess, but a mess who likes to keep things simple if that is possible 🙂

          Just keep focusing on yourself, getting to know yourself, who you are, what makes you tick… knowing ourselves helps us to know others, and figure things out.

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          1. Fack, the contacts are speeding up to twice a week now! I see her as nothing but a child acting out, but she’s hell on wheels as an adult child. What is the point of a final discard, to just continue contacting that person over and over again? I mean really. I think you came out just fine Ursula, and I’m grateful for your friendship.

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            1. My guess is that your NC is driving her crazy (more than usual), she’s filling in your silences with the voices of her fears, and she’s trying to shut those up by getting you to break your NC. At least if you’re talking to her, replying to her, then she can twist your words to suit her story, she can get the power back which it sounds like she feels she has lost in this scenario, but your silence is twisting her words, her thoughts, her feelings, into weapons which keep hurting her. She’d rather they were hurting you – that’s part of a narc’s way. They hurt others to stop hurting. If you take on their pain, they don’t have to deal with it.

              It is incredibly complicated and frustrating. Use whatever you can to block it out while you figure things out and get yourself where you need to be. She’s not going away quietly – narcs never do. They have to keep talking and hate silence. Their silent treatment is never silent for them, it only seems silent to us.

              Saw a fun film, not sure if it’s your cup of tea, it’s Aussie weird – Mental (2012) – http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1655416/ – there was one line in it which I loved – “everything is sharks”.

              Keep focused on doing what you’re doing for yourself, try to zone her out as much as possible until you get your bearings and feel ready to handle her. You will have to figure out how to deal with her, having a child with a narc means they’re in your life for a long time. And she will use your child to get to you – narcs see their children as objects to be used for the narc’s benefit.

              Take care 🙂

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              1. Yep, sounds about spot on again. I don’t give any positive or negative response, and was hoping she would just spin herself out, but that doesn’t seem so likely happening, unfortunately. I dunno why I haven’t caught on figuring these things out on my own. Thanks for the help. They’re minds are just so twisted. I guess I have to reprogram my brain to think as illogically upside down as possible.

                My ex is really dangerous. She’s gone any and all lengths to hurt me. I’ve seen her in a psychotic break from lack of “supply” once, (from what I understand now) and it wasn’t pretty! She was fukn vicious, more than ever before, and I was stupid enough to blame it on the hormones of her pregnancy. I couldn’t and didn’t want to abandon ship, with a baby on board. It wasn’t until after the birth, when things didn’t change, that I figured things out. Her mask was slipping throughout the whole time. Are they able to put it back on, or is this conscious choice for final discard?

                I still find it quite sad that she’s so plagued with demons. I also felt bad for her because her mother was such a brutal narc. I saw how much she hurt her with neglect and verbal abuses, so I called her, The Beast! I always wondered why the flip she just didn’t give up on her, as everyone advised (or so I was told). But I realise now, she was/is just reenacting her childhood, still holding her breath, hoping for a different result, which sadly, will never happen as I’m sure you know all too well. I see now, how much they would go at each other, and are each others biggest enablers. It wears on me to just think about it, I would hate to live it! She seems like a very good and doting mother (altruistic), but I can see how she sees, our daughter is just a reflection of herself, which is very disheartening as well. It’s really sad, they’re incurable creatures. Have you ever seen or spotted a narc come to your forum?

                Thanks for the film tip. I’ll have to look into it. I have a new friend I found on forum. We have a long distance movie night together every week. 🙂 We’re watching Apocolypto on Friday. Have you seen it? We’ve helped each other quite a bit, navigate through all this shite! I’m grateful for your friendship as well. I’ve watched all the films I could from your list. It’s just extremely difficult to find foreign and indie ones. I really haven’t found any good ones I’ve seen recently to refer to you, but will when I do. Much, Love and Light!

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                1. You know how some children can go from happy and calm -> to screaming tantrum -> to happy and calm again in the space of a very short time – it’s pretty much the same with a narcissist. Except with a narcissist there’s a whole story to it, an epic drama with all the bells and whistles which adult thought and years bring to it. Therefore when they go off the deep end, it may last a while depending on the story with which it is connected, but as some point they’ll reset themselves.

                  It’s easier for them to reset themselves after they’ve taken refuge in the silent treatment – the silent treatment is not for us, it’s for them, however because of the way it affects others they often use it for manipulation, but that’s not its primary function. It serves as a cocoon in which they reinvent, reset, recreate themselves.

                  If their mask has slipped and they know or suspect that you’ve seen it:

                  1/ You get discarded so they can put the mask back on and pretend that never happened

                  2/ If they don’t discard you, then they recruit you to help them put the mask back on and pretend it never slipped

                  3/ Or they decide to discard that mask and put a different one on. Sometimes a mask which slips simply reveals another mask underneath. Such as a narcissist who goes from playing the victim to playing the advocate for victims and fighter of victimisers. You find this metamorphosis quite a bit online because people can wear any mask they want on the internet, and if that mask slips, they discard that online identity and create a new one. The internet is a playground for a narcissist.

                  Write about narcissists and you’ll attract narcissists because the subject is a hot topic and narcissists like to be a part of what’s trending. What they really want to be is ahead of the trend, so they immerse themselves in it to own it and be better than the rest. This blog – http://n-continuum.blogspot.co.uk/ – has some great posts about online narcissists. This one – http://n-continuum.blogspot.co.uk/2013/06/blogduggery-part-two-this-is-not-okay.html – is very insightful, including the story which unfolded in the comments.

                  Whether you’re the child or spouse of a narcissist, you are who they need you to be for them, they put a mask on you too and can’t see you as you are, that would ruin their story and role for you. The way they behave towards you is all about the role they are playing and what story they have going on. Deviate from their script and they lose their shit, then they force you back into playing out the story the way they want it to go. If you refuse to play your part, they give you another part. They’re determined to get their happily ever after, even if they have to make everyone else miserable to get it. Once Upon a Time, the TV series, is a rather good study of narcissists, their masks, their stories, etc.

                  I haven’t seen Apocalypto. It’s supposed to be superb. I love the long distance movie buddy idea, sounds like fun! Hope you both enjoy the film!

                  My Pinterest film list is (a mess) mostly the films (and TV shows) which left an impression on me in some way that I can remember. There’s lots I’ve left out, and I’m too lazy to update it and stuff. So it’s the bare bones. If I listed everything I’ve seen it would look like Amazon and Netflix plus a bunch of stuff that rarely gets shown. My rating system is – Got me thinking, was transfixed, fell asleep, turned it off, left it on but didn’t watch it, can’t remember a thing about it except that I’m fairly certain I’ve seen it. 😉

                  Take care of yourself!

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                  1. Well, I “deviated from the script” and she lost all her so called friends very shortly thereafter, except the sickest one, who I always thought was quite narcish. Do a birds of the same feather, flock together with these crazy arsed people or something? She knows I found her out, so putting on a new mask of an “altruistic” mother, and pretending it never happened, sounds about right. I guess it could be worse. It’s just sad there’s no wake up call or cure for these sick feckers.

                    I kinda wish you were in the States so we could enjoy movie nights, but then you wouldn’t be you. 🙂 Apocolypto was very good. Not much dialog, and very violent, in context. It’s worth the view. Watch it “with” tomorrow night if you can, and give review. Thanks again Ursula. You’ve helped me navigate through this very much. Hugs!

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                    1. Like attracting like works for narcs too. Narcissists do flock together (and support each other in the belief that everyone except them are narcissists). Then they try to outdo each other, which is exhausting to watch, and if you happen to get caught in their competitive crossfire, you’ll be torn to shreds as each side uses you for their own purposes and then gets annoyed with you for… everything. Sometimes they unite against you, and then it’s like a narc tidal wave. But they don’t stay united for long, mostly because they prefer to be at odds. Conflict nourishes them. Drama is their favourite place.

                      There are many millions of wake-up calls for narcissists, but they press the ‘snooze’ button on them. There are also ‘cures’ but those are not ‘miracle magic pills’ and require self-reflection, accountability, being responsible for your own shit, slogging through your inner mess, and other things like that, which those with NPD find hard to do. It’s not impossible, it’s more about whether they want to or not. They usually don’t want to, and their reasons for that aren’t as delusional as we would like them to be. They’re quite adept at seeing the hypocrisy of others… and that encourages them in their ways as is. It’s a complex issue.

                      I probably will never see Apocalypto… as superb as it is supposed to be, it sounds a bit too heavy-going for me, the kind of film I tend to fall asleep while watching. But you never know, if I do, I’ll give you my two-bits.

                      I’m in those mid-life crisis years where I’ve finally learned to do as I please rather than as others please because mortality looms and makes you more aware of how you spend your time (do you want to laugh or groan some more?). Did see a great film the other night – The 100-Year-Old Man Who Climbed Out the Window and Disappeared (2013).

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                    2. Hmm, interesting. I’ve read tons, there is no cure. I guess I can hold onto hope through prayer, that she’ll come to terms with her childhood, mother, and disorder. Sincerely doubt it though. (big sigh) I was reading the article you shared while you were posting, about the smear campaign. Very brutal, what she’s done, and doing! Scarey, but nice to know it’s not just my paranoia.

                      I was in constant crossfire between her and her mum, so always spot on Ursula! Another interesting story about two narcs; She was having an affair (two years no less) with a man almost 30 years her senior, I call, grampa. She was angered he bought her narcish friend a 50 dollar birthday gift. When they asked me about it, I said he was a predatory creeper. The friend replied, “He’s so cool,” extremely illicitly filled with desire in her face and eyes. I already had suspicions, but hadn’t put all the pieces together yet, and really didn’t want to believe she could. Incredibly eerie thinking about it, in hindsight. I need to explain the whole story about this at some point for your help, please. The comment section was also just as intense!

                      Rental for Apocolypto was not available, so we watched Killing Them Softly, with Brad Pitt. Corporate American investing into American Mob affairs, with a spin of politics involved. Interesting and entertaining, but probably not you cup of tea. See you at the movies Ursula! 🙂
                      Hugs

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                    3. If the problem is in the human mind then the ‘cure’ also exists in the human mind, but the mind is a system built upon habit, amongst other things. It can be compared to a computer, but it doesn’t work like one. Software updates to the mind need us to do them manually, piece by piece, and there is no guarantee that an upgrade improves anything where the human being is concerned.

                      People who are professionally studying such things as personality disorders at a clinical level are still debating whether certain disorders are hard wired or otherwise, nature or nurture, etc. Brain scans of people with certain disorders versus those of others without those disorders shows a marked difference… but is this changeable?

                      So, at the moment, it’s a bit of a free for all.

                      Why shouldn’t NPD be curable? Logically it could be, some people with it have claimed to have been cured, but it’s a disorder which is prone to being illogical, and it may and can be tied in to other disorders. Until the professionals know what it is and can explain it simply, I guess we’re all guessing about it… and having to deal with it in real time, personally, as best as we can.

                      Tell your full story when you’re ready… I don’t know if I can help with it. Ultimately your story is about you, and you’re the one who has to figure it out.

                      I avoid most films with Brad Pitt, especially recent ones. He’s trying too hard and I find that exhausting to watch when an actor does that. I usually fall asleep watching those kinds of films. I do quite like political films and TV shows, the Scandinavians do that really well, and the Brits do it with satire which bites.

                      Going totally off topic other than film, have you ever seen Night Watch (2004) – http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0403358/

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                    4. Oh yeah, Ursula. I wanted to share that I was kicked off psychopathfree website. I shared my story about granpa and thee others I found out about. I replied to a comment with an “lol” to her/him response sharing the same experience, calling them, frumpy, dumpy, and stumpy, and said I thought her avatar picture was cute (a chipmunk holding a machine gun). The moderator named “Smitten Kitten” commented, that “I was flirting, and too happy after a recent experience with a narc.” I told her to fuck all, basically. What the tuck was that about??? Freakn darma! Not cool, especially after sharing something so deeply personal for the first time. What are your thoughts?

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                    5. I never go on forums. It’s not my thing, I’m not that kind of social, so I don’t have any experience of them other than reading a thread on one after doing a search, or from forums which have shared a link to one of my posts and the results of that, or from stories which my friends have shared of their experiences on them. Some good, some bad, some in between.

                      I’ve read quite a few ‘horror’ stories about NPD forums on other people’s blogs.

                      A search I did a while ago led me to another forum, not NPD related but which had a thread about NPD that eventually discussed NPD forums due to some people’s bad experiences on them with those who run and moderate them… pointing out that in everything there is the human element to consider.

                      Forums are made up of humans, so you’re going to get human in all its gory and glory. A forum about a subject as sensitive as NPD is going to be hyper-touchy to anything which triggers people’s pain. It’s going to be a pain doing all the talking forum.

                      If a forum is mostly female, a male is going have a rough time of it. The male way of dealing with pain is generally different from the female way of dealing with it. The two ways don’t go well together.

                      Sounds like you were too male in the way you expressed yourself and therefore you upset the female element.

                      Considering that your narcissist is female… you need to find a forum which is predominantly male rather than female or you may end up experiencing a certain weirding along the lines of meeting what you’re trying to escape while trying to figure it out.

                      From what you’ve shared with me about this incident… I’d be tempted to ask you if you were deliberately trying to get kicked off the forum. However my guess is that you were being yourself, with perhaps a bit of bluff and bluster thrown in to cover up the depth of hurt you’re feeling (men don’t cry stuff), and you did it in an environment which didn’t understand what you were doing, and didn’t try to understand it either because they’re all in pain… and your pain triggered theirs and they reacted defensively and it spiraled from there.

                      If you’re looking for a healing environment for you, a forum which can be a home where you can share yourself and your story… and be accepted and welcomed…as you are, as is… it may take a while and some painful experiences along the way. Perhaps finding a forum for men may be more productive, but not necessarily.

                      I don’t know.

                      When I’m in pain I retreat from others, because others… you know.

                      Take care!

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                    6. We can only hope Ursula. Its painful knowing my daughter will grow up having to deal with this disorder. We haven’t quite gotten there with “fixing” distorted minds, but one can always hope. She’s a facking wrecking ball, so it’s best for me to stay the F away! I can only hope and work on how to navigate at her this point. I haven’t seen Night Watch. I stay away from horror, but it doesn’t look too scarey, so I’ll watch tonite. Any thoughts on the psychopathfree shite? Sorry to be such a little bugger.
                      Namaste

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                    7. When the time comes for your daughter to deal with the legacy which her mother has given her, she’ll have you to share what you’ve learned, but more than anything what she needs from you is your love to give her a balanced experience. All kids really need from us is for us to see them as individuals who are growing and learning just as we did, and to encourage them to find their own way in their own way. She’ll be fine.

                      In the meantime, take care of yourself.

                      Don’t worry about forums and the stuff which happens on them, they’re fraught with human mess. A place where people unleash stress in a myriad of ways, often onto others. Sometimes they’re great and sometimes they’re far from that.

                      Focus on your real life and on what you need there. Online is great sometimes but it is not offline – offline is where it’s at.

                      Keep yer pecker up! 😉

                      Liked by 1 person

                    8. Lol at you not being social. You’re pretty sociable with me! 😛 Yeah, your comment, “When I’m in pain I retreat from others, because others… you know.” Speaks truth, volumes, and pretty much sums it up, unfortunately. One of my favourite quotes; “Your actions speak so loudly, I cannot hear what you say.” Ralph Waldo Emerson No, I wasn’t deliberately trying to get kicked off. I was drinking and I just basically told her to f*** off for her judgement and assumptions. I didn’t even know she was a dem moderator, and as one really should have known better, imo. But hey.. you know. My real life sucks right now so I’m in “hibernation” mode, until I can level the fack back up! I’ll share with you eventually, my ‘horror’ story that I shared for the first time on that forum.

                      As for my baby girl, I’m going on ‘holiday’ for about 2 years, traveling the states, to visit all the national parks. I need the comfort of nature to retrieve my peace back. I’ll hold onto unsent postcards, so that she knows, I never forgot. When she is a youngin, it is at that time, I plan to return with a ‘fury and flurry.’ I could send you postcards as well, if you’d like. Be quite the collection. 🙂 I’ll give you review of Night Watch, after watching it tonite. Lol at keep yer pecker up! Same to you. 😉

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                    9. A couple of my friends have shared some pretty ghastly stories of what can go on on forums, and they weren’t on forums which dealt with an issue like NPD. You get the same sort of communication problems and human power dynamics which you find offline, only online it can get even more heated than offline. I guess some of it has to do with people using the internet to blow off steam which they can’t do offline in the same way. And some of it has to do with it all being through comments, typing words, which lack the other things we use to communicate offline, so you miss tone of voice, body language, sensory information, the ability to read people and understand where their words are coming from. On an NPD forum people are perhaps too overly sensitive because they’re there to share their pain, usually when it is still raw, and when pain talks it triggers other people’s issues. People who are being overly sensitive about their own issues tend to be rather insensitive towards others.

                      Someone a while back shared a link to one of my posts on an NPD recovery forum. Several people took offense to my post, rather than take their offense out on me they took it out on the person who shared my link. That person handled it really well, but they really should not have had to do that kind of damage control in a place where people are supposed to be understanding towards each other and their respective painful stories.

                      Yes, people should know better (especially if they are moderating a forum like that), but people rarely do. We’re all a twats sometimes, and once we’ve been a twat, we find it hard to fess up to it and tend to get all self righteous on others people’s asses instead.

                      I’d chalk it up to a lesson worth learning, another step in your healing process. You got to share a story which you hadn’t shared before. That’s liberating and worth doing even if the results of it were negative. When you share your deepest pain, people often can’t handle it and act like jerks. Shit is always happening when people try to connect at deeper levels.

                      One of my favourite quotes is:

                      “Let everything happen to you
                      Beauty and terror
                      Just keep going
                      No feeling is final” ― Rainer Maria Rilke

                      Another favourite is this:

                      “What the public criticizes in you, cultivate. It is you.” ― Jean Cocteau

                      Hibernation mode sounds good, it’s an excellent way of getting to know yourself and get in touch with everything that was suppressed while being with your narc. After a relationship with a narcissist it is probably one of the best ways to detox. A relationship with a narcissist often shows us that we’re placing far too much value on what others think of us, how others see us, etc, and that we need to place more value on what we think of ourselves and how we see ourselves.

                      “What does it mean when a man falls in love with a radiant face across the room? It may mean that he has some soul work to do. His soul is the issue. Instead of pursuing the woman and trying to get her alone… …he needs to go alone himself, perhaps to a mountain cabin, for three months, write poetry, canoe down a river, and dream.” ― Robert Bly, Iron John: A Book About Men.

                      The trip sounds like a great adventure. Have you thought about blogging it as you do it, or instagram-ming it. I’m sure there are many people who would love to join you vicariously on such a trip into the wild. Think about sharing it online… might lead to something interesting while doing something interesting.

                      If I was you I’d make duplicate postcards, send one to your daughter and keep an exact replica of it to give to her later (just in case her mother doesn’t give them to her). That way, if her mother lets her have them, she’ll know you’re thinking of her and haven’t forgotten her or abandoned her. And if her mother keeps them from her, then you can show her later that you kept in touch but her mother interfered. Children live in the present and tend to take things very personally, if she doesn’t hear from you for two years she may think that’s her fault, that you don’t love her, that there is something wrong with her (and a narc mother will poison her mind about your relationship with your daughter). She may also become angry towards you for leaving her to deal with her mother on her own. So, perhaps, if you can, give her something to hold on to before you go so she knows your absence isn’t her fault or about her.

                      Fathers are usually the first male in a female child’s life, and they influence how a female relates to males. It’s something to consider.

                      Speaking of Father/Daughter relationships, this is an interesting take on that – Somewhere (2010) http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1421051/

                      Take care of yourself!

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                    10. Hi Ursula, Great quotes. Thanks. 🙂 I love the one by Robert Bly! I’ll have to pick up the book, especially for my adventure!
                      “Absolute power, corrupts absolutely.” Sir Dalton Acton and, “Common sense, isn’t so common anymore.” Voltaire. Pretty much says it as well.

                      It just really irked me, to be judged for being “flirtation and too happy” when sharing something so deeply personal. I just wondered what the cripe it was all about.. Yeah, people. Lol at “twats.” I’d get some serious flack throwing that word around here and on forum. Might be quite fun, actually! 😉

                      Thanks for the postcard tip. I don’t think I’ll send. She’s too young and won’t get em anyway. I also don’t want her mum to know anything, about as much about anything, as much as possible. She’ll stalk, harass, hoover, attempt to prevent and destroy. Oh, what a lovely lil narc I have. I haven’t processed the whole daughter thing to be honest with you. Not trying to be selfish at all, just need the time in solitude, peace, and nature to come to terms with everything. May God be with, protect and guide us. She is an amazing little girl though. Something VERY special about her, and not just cuz I’m her pop.

                      I don’t think I’m gonna blog Ursula. Most likely journal. I just don’t seem to find (the, and,) words “meaningful” through spirituality I guess one could say, if this makes any sense. Maybe I could describe where I’m at, and what I’m seeing, and you could make up story, traveling through time and space with me! Not that sounds wonderful! 🙂 You’re just so eloquent with words, and who be an awesome adventure and reference for my little one.

                      I took a gander at Night Watch, was just too weird (fantastical) for me to follow, especially in subtitles. I also believe one needs to connect (“attach”) with the, a character fairly quickly to be a good film, at which I did not. I was drinking, so I’ll have to try again, and view through your eyes. Which reminds me, my ex used to love that I love films. Once all my fav, good movies ran out, we ran out. Once the credits started rolling, she starting rolling.. off to another never never land adventure. I realize now, there was no true “connection.” She was merely playing a part in a film, mirroring, acting, directing. Oscar Award winning performance I tell ya! Now we can all bow and curtsy, awaiting another breath taking encore and curtain call. Creepy.

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                    11. It’s always frustrating when someone judges us and does it in an arbitrary way without giving us the opportunity to work things out, especially when there’s a misunderstanding from their end of things, or trying to understand our perspective. And when we feel judged, we tend to return the favour or react defensively. If it happens when we’ve shared something deeply personal, which it often does because we’re more sensitive about the reaction of those with whom we’ve shared, it can cause a compounding of the problem.

                      I must admit that when someone uses ‘being happy’ as a criticism and way to condemn it’s very weird. However if the social setting requires people to be unhappy, then I suppose someone expressing anything other than obvious misery is going to be deemed unacceptable. I guess this particular person has never encountered that human behaviour of saying you’re fine when you’re not, smiling when you’re crying inside, and using lightness to mitigate heaviness. They’ve not seen the scene with the black knight in Monty Python and the Holy Grail.

                      Twat is a nothing word over here, and gets used in conversational banter all the time, as do many other words along those lines. I forget sometimes that Americans are quite prudish about swearing. When Americans go on British talk shows they always get a bit shocked by the extent of what you’re allowed to say on TV in the UK. I guess that’s why the US is always remaking British TV shows rather than airing them as is, so they can edit out the copious swearing 😉

                      I hope you have a wonderful time on your adventure and find what you’re seeking 🙂

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                    12. Hi Mark, I just meant to say your intuition about something being severely wrong with the moderation of PsychopathFree is accurate. The incident may look small but is in no way the only one. I’ve seen other members treated that way, as in getting comments from moderators evaluating their suffering, or lack thereof (as they saw it anyway). They can ask you to leave the forum (in public) if they think you’re not trying hard enough to maintain no contact; you can suddenly find yourself cornered by the people who had initially welcomed you unconditionally. Also, they kick you out without a warning, reason given or way to explain yourself to others. Also – and I didn’t know that before coming across Thomas Sheridan’s blog; he really sheds some light on these people – they have a private area on the forum where they discuss banned members, dissect their posts and mock them. If I were you I would remove any information from their site. That place is not what it’s made out to be but the complete opposite. You can find a few stories online regarding the damage their attitude has done to people who were recovering from abuse. They have no consideration for your situation at all. As soon as you annoy them even slightly or disagree with them, you are labelled a troll, a psychopath, a trouble maker etc; it’s that easy. They’re not right in the head. It doesn’t apply to all moderators but as a general rule, you are not safe there.

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                  2. Well, the encore has arrived. The pattern usually runs in three month cycles, so she’s overdue anyhow. I just thought the final discard was that, final, at least for now. Four fone calls yesterday, and one email (all unanswered) with nothing more than, “I miss my best friend” from an alternate email address. It’s what I used to tell her, before finding out how sick she was/is. I already know her next move is to arrive at my door. Can you please help me with what the truck is going on in her head? Does she really make herself believe, nothing ever happened, and we’re going to live a happily ever after, or is there a far more sinister motive, for more desired abuse. I know she is seeking attention, and I’m far past due for another temper tantrum, but should I just tell her game is over and gigs up? I really just want some time away from her madness and nonsense, but very aware she doesn’t care. Your thoughts, suggestions and ideas are sincerely appreciated.

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                    1. The narcissistic discard is not always final. It depends on the individual narcissist as to how it works, that’s why it is important to figure out your particular narcissist’s story and the role they’ve given you in it.

                      If you’ve been reading articles which say that the final discard is final. End of. You need to assess the relationships being used as a guideline for that kind of statement. The discard only tends to be final under certain circumstances in certain types of relationships. Those circumstances usually involve a narcissist not really being interested in a person in the first place, not having invested themselves in the relationship to the point where that relationship becomes intrinsic to their identity and reality, so the connection is easily severed. The again, for some narcissists being able to completely discard people is a part of their story, their identity and their reality. For those narcissists the final discard is final because it supports their persona.

                      Male narcissists tend to do that one more than female narcs, unless the female narcissist has taken on a masculine persona – that kind of female narc often has a payback story going on where men are concerned. Kind of like the story of Miss Havisham and what she wanted Estella to do in Great Expectations by Charles Dickens. She wanted to create a female who would treat men the way that women believe that men treat women, and do it so that men would feel the pain that women feel. Something like that.

                      That kind of female narcissist is less common. The more typical female narcissist will often be stereotypically female. She’ll hang on to past relationships because she needs to know that no one ever gets over her, that makes her special, if she thinks an ex has moved on she’ll turn up again and try to rekindle the connection. Their exes are not allowed to forget them, and their ideal is for the ex to pine for them for the rest of their life and hopefully die from a broken heart.

                      There is a storyline in Girls in seasons one/two with Marnie which reflects the patterns of a female narcissist rather well. She dumps her long term boyfriend because she finds him boring, safe, he loves her, and because she wants more, she’s found someone better who could help her social climbing desires come true. He decides to move on, and when she finds out that he’s not dying from a broken heart, she gets very mad at him, then seduces him, screws him over again. Once again he moves on, and even worse he becomes successful. So once again she chases him. She uses him to try to get success for herself. Then dumps him again when she doesn’t get what she wants. She moves on, but only because the actor who played her boyfriend/ex left the show so they wrote his character out of it, otherwise the yo-yo-ing would still be going on.

                      Certain narcissists when they discard you only do it because you’re ruining their story. The discard is temporary. During the time that they’re away from you after the discard they forget who you are and remember who they need you to be for them. They get all nostalgic about your role in their life story and want you back. So they return as though they never discarded you and treated you like shit and expect you to take them back because they’re back, and that’s all that matters. But then you ruin their role for you again, so they go away again. Then they get nostalgic again and come back. Over and over and over the same pattern plays out. They’re stuck in that cycle, and so are you as far as they are concerned.

                      You’ve got a child connecting you, so you’re family. A narcissist sees family as an even death won’t part us bond.

                      You probably won’t get anywhere by telling her you’ve exposed her game, it’s over and the jig is up – it’s not a game or jig for her, and it will never be over. I don’t know her personally so I can’t be sure about her story, but from what you’ve said she sounds like a Covert narcissist which means she’s mostly unaware of what she’s doing and believes her own story. She probably sees herself as an empath, a highly sensitive person, who is woefully misunderstood and gets hurt all the time by the insensitivity of others. She will be a permanent damsel in distress looking for her knight in shining armor to save her from dragons, but those knights have a way of becoming dragons from which another knight must save the damsel. This type of narcissist is impossible to deal with as they are completely immersed in their fantasy and they tend to drown others in it.

                      Being real with her won’t help you or her, it will just make things worse, feed the drama. Anything which you do that is antagonistic will just kick the pattern into overdrive. She’ll always see herself as a victim, a distressed heroin. You’re either her victimiser or her hero, or both, depending on what cycle of emotional roller coaster she is on.

                      You could fake your own death, run away, however if you want a relationship with your daughter, you’ll have to work this out. Perhaps using the ‘I miss my best friend’ thing could lead to a middle ground. But that might take too much time and effort, and may not pay off.

                      I don’t know you well enough to be able to assess what advice to give. I’d hazard a guess you’re too passionate a soul to go for the friendly detachment angle, especially without any guarantees that it will give you the result that you want. You also don’t come across as being comfortable with doing anything else other than being honest with people – so being manipulative is out of the question.

                      There is nothing that got my parents to run away from me faster and disappear for ages (taking their nonsense with them) than when I had an emotional outburst of my own and asked them to help save me. Mind you, they were used to me being stoic, so the rare times I wasn’t stoic and burst into tears scared the crap out of them and ruined the role I was supposed to play for them. Narcissists tend to suck when someone needs their practical help, and they run away because they don’t want to find out how useless they are.

                      The outburst has to be something like crying, something intensely vulnerable, not anger – your anger feeds a narcissist but your tears frighten them away. Think about your experience with that moderator, maybe you can use what you learned there to aid you in dealing with your ex. Find a way to get yourself kicked off your ex’s ‘forum’. If she’s used to being a certain way with you and you being a certain way with her, with the roles you both play in your relationship, deviating way off script may be the way to go. Although men do not like to turn the waterworks on… I wonder what would happen if you did?

                      People sometimes advise using reverse psychology on narcissists. It can work, especially if it causes them to be placed in a role they’re not used to playing.

                      That’s all I can think of at this time.

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                    2. Thanks for the lengthy response Ursula. So many effin variables, makes my head spin, hence needing time and space to figure shite out, which doesn’t seem to happen with these dis-orderlies. I guess a normal co-parenting relationship is out of the question, (joke, kinda). But that this is my biggest weapon, that will both piss her off, and chase her away, buying me more time. Yep, I am cast as her hero-villian role in her movie that can never save her from herself, which she is incapable of comprehending. I found out through my truth seeking at the end, she was hiding and banging her ex the whole time, throughout our five year relationship, that she blatantly reconnected with, at my “final” departure from the film. I guess she’s bored, and/or has “come to conclusion,” that he can’t save her either. Such tormented and vicious cycles, they are so blinded by, and always has the same outcome and “endings.”

                      I will also use the cheating against her, no matter how pist she gets, because she knew/knows, it was a no fly zone for me, and she will never take responsibility for it, because it causes her to face herself, and own demons. I really don’t know the difference between “covert and overt” narcs. Could you please direct me to an article? Yea, you got me spot on about, being passionate and honest to a fault. She sucked all the life and light out of me at the “end.” And I suck at poker! Looks like I’m gonna have to pick up my game. Crying doesn’t change things, she gets pleasure out of it, but maybe she’ll see me as weak and useless. I can always play the part of, a heartbroken and useless idiot? That will change the pattern, and hopefully cycle. They tend to forget, so this role may be useful, more than once. Ughs to, “til death due us part.” She lost that role in my flick, but unfortunately, not hers. This movie really blows, and there’s no exit, so detachment is the feature part and role, I must learn to play much better, and very well.

                      Thank You Ursula.

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                    3. Links about covert narcissism:

                      This is interesting, it’s a comment by a narcissist which an author who writes a lot about NPD has shared on her Psychology Today blog – https://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/stop-walking-eggshells/201311/the-lament-lonely-narcissist

                      That author has also written a post about Covert/Overt narcs only she calls them vulnerable and invulnerable – https://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/stop-walking-eggshells/201111/two-types-narcissists-pose-somewhat-different-challenges

                      This is quite an informative post – http://goodmenproject.com/ethics-values/5-signs-youre-being-played-by-a-victim-fiff/

                      Some people call Covert Narcissists – Passive-aggressive Narcissists. This is a post written by someone who was in a relationship with a passive-aggressive narc – https://www.firstwivesworld.com/index.php/my-narcissistic-ex-husband/item/8320-passive-aggressive-narcissists-are-eternal-victims

                      I have another link which isn’t working at the moment due to a server issue which is all about covert narcissism. Do a search online for Covert Narcissist/narcissism. There’s a lot out there which explains it.

                      Ultimately… trust what you know and work with that. A lot of advice comes from experience – we each have to figure out what our own experience is. It does vary from narcissist to narcissist, and from who we are ourselves and how we interact with them.

                      They are very adept at using our ‘weakness’ against us, it’s not always something they do deliberately and consciously, which is a difficult thing to understand – they are adept at unconscious manipulation. We tend to think manipulators are conscious of what they’re doing and we approach them using that kind of logic, but with a covert narc that kind of logic can be flawed.

                      Do what you need to do for yourself. Keep it as simple and as sane as possible. Make it about you for you, but be aware that they only live in the land of them.

                      Best wishes!

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                    4. Thanks for the articles Ursula. She’s wicked aggressive, abusive, vengeful, haughty and whorish, but them portrays herself as “victim” (damsel in distress) to obtain more victims. So I dunno what she is, I just know that she’s plum crazy. How could anyone possibly and blatantly flaunt a relationship with an ex, (and cheat with for 5 years) and then send an email claiming, “I miss my best friend.” Wow, only a freakn narc could.

                      I checked my fone for any calls today, and I had NINE calls from her yesterday, not 4. It’s only a matter of time before she’s at my door again, so I’m running out of time. I have no doubt whatsoever, she’ll use our daughter as greatest weapon, so I need level up very quickly on that one! I really can’t help but to feel like a fool Ursula. Thanks again for your awesome insights and warm wishes.
                      Namaste

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                2. Thank you for the validation Abbie. It threw me back a bit. I guess you’re gonna get judgmental anywhere. All the best to you!

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  7. Beautifully written! If you are given the silent treatment, to me it’s a form of mind control. First of all, you don’t know if they will fly into a rage, retaliate against you, love on you or go silent…so you are constantly on the edge, watching their moods, watching for any sign…and the joy is sucked out of your life. And the Narc gets what they want: your total attention. When you get the silent treatment you may ask yourself what you did wrong, why aren’t they talking to you, what are they thinking, what can you do to “fix” it… etc… All these thoughts are mind control. You get so sucked into the drama that you stop thinking rationally. You second guess yourself or put yourself down. You try to see things the way the Narc would–dismissing your own needs. The silent treatment is purposeful. It’s emotional terrorism. It’s playing games with your heart and mind. And if someone is treating you this way, it’s abusive. My advise: get help and get out while you can. The relationship won’t get better. Someone who is toying with your love and trust has never truly loved you.

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    1. Thank you 🙂

      Your advice to – Get help and get out while you can – is good, sound advice, and the preferred option, however it isn’t always possible or easy to do, especially if you are a child of a narcissist or have a child with the narcissist.

      And if you do manage to get help and get out from under their control, you still have to deal with the damage they have done to you (PTSD), and the control they still may be trying to exert over you and your life – Narcissists do not like to be left and will often become obsessed with getting you back or getting back at you.

      I think it helps to figure out how the mind control works, and why it works. We need to figure out how they got into our heads and managed to control us, so that we can get them out of our heads and protect ourselves from those kind of tactics.

      Awareness is essential – self-awareness and awareness of others.

      By sharing our experiences, and ideas, we help each other to heal and become stronger. Every voice gathered together raises our collective awareness and makes us all less vulnerable to mind control – we need to be in control of our own minds, consciously aware of our thoughts and how we use them, and how others may try to use them so that they can’t use our own thoughts against us.

      Thank you for sharing 🙂

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  8. Excellent yet again! Even if I had the entire day – I could not come up with all of this. My N used the silent treatment to completely destroy every vestige of what was once us. Then she sh!t all over the remaining pieces by what she did next. Every day I strive to understand the Narcissist. I feel I owe it to the outside world – to help protect the rest of us from this spreading vermin that is surely eating out the very core of what remains of our humanity. The dis-ordered Narcissists are the achilles heal of humanity – has been for along time. If we allow the Nfection to continue its spread – our future is bleak.

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    1. Thank you 🙂

      I was thinking about something along these lines the other day, of the culture of Narcissism and its consequences. I came across an opinion from Noam Chomsky wherein he suggested that the Culture of Narcissism was created to stop the people, all of us, from joining forces. To keep us separate from each other and at odds – by making us believe that we should be focused on our own selfish desires, on wanting and needing for ourselves, consuming, and taking from others whom we were led to believe had something we didn’t have and so making us want that, get it at whatever the cost to us and others, etc. If we’re all fighting each other we’re less likely to get together on anything.

      Yet. In many ways Narcissists have created the opposite. Victims of Narcissists are banding together, writing and communicating their experiences, informing themselves and others. Cooperating. And that cooperation is the kind which over time gathers momentum and creates social change. However we have a choice to make when dealing with what a narcissist has done to us, and that choice makes all the difference to the path we take – because sometimes when we’re wounded deeply by a narcissist we accidentally end up behaving in a manner which is similar to the way they have behaved – we’re passing on the wound instead of the healing. So we need to be aware and beware of our own motivations and intentions. We have to keep in mind what Nietzsche pointed out – “He who fights with monsters should look to it that he himself does not become a monster.”

      We’ve all perhaps been Nfected (as you say cleverly – love wordplay!), one way or another, but perhaps the Nfection was needed to evolve us, our immune system, and now what the future holds is up to us – we decide if it is bleak or not based on our perception and our choices. We can spread the Nfection (maybe inadvertently) or we can spread the immunity to it.

      Lots of food for thought! Thank you for sharing!

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  9. Also this helped me realise with my ex narc he used the ST at least five times to try and control/change/get me to wipe out my reality. I could not bear the silence, just like you wrote because I was hooked by the idea, he had made me believe, it was my fault. I came home from travellng with him, on the journey he chose, so i could spend Christmas with my cousin who was in Austraia from Holland for the first and only time, (my father died when I was 23, my aunt, his sister I met and connected with in 2000 after my father almost erased his other siblings from his life adn we bonded completely.. I met a part of myself in her .. if this isnt too narcissistic…) Anyway he got angry when in answer to his question “Who is the most important person in your life?” I could not give him the answer he wanted …i.e. him. and would not return for his birthday due to a family member being unwell. Thus began the last silent treatment which ended with a verbally abusive email beginning “Do you know how difficult it is to be in a relationship with someone as flighty, insecure and screwed up as you?”. I wont go on and feel strange even about sharing this. But this blog has helped me more than I can say. And it has shown the real positive side of when we go silent due to being hurt so badly by the damage the Narc uses. My mother used to use in on me. One use led me to two terminations of pregancy I was then castigated for by her. Thank for the opportunity to share this. Thank you so much for the wisdom you share<3

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    1. You are too very wise and what you write helps me to feel less isolated in my experience, our fathers have a lot in common! But i have the feeling you are not in the that dark place anymore and you fight to get out there, to reach out, to express yourself.You can be connected with people.Big hug. xxx

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      1. TY ❤

        It's not that I don't dwell in that dark place anymore so much as that the dark place is familiar territory which has become somewhere I feel at home. I've learned to look at it from another perspective, one which appreciates it's purpose. In many ways it is my protection when dealing with other people who reside in their dark places.

        Jung said it best – "Knowing your own darkness is the best method for dealing with the darknesses of other people."

        Once I accepted the benefits of isolation, of being separate and alone, then connection became easier and more pleasurable. They actually work together and support each other. One needs the other to maintain balance. Otherwise we run the risk of losing ourselves to be with another, boundaries blur and confusion ensues. So being alone yet together is quite healthy. At least that's my perspective on it. I am a bit schizoid… 😉

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    2. Thank you for sharing 🙂

      I used to feel strange about sharing too, sometimes it just needs to be shared because it helps us free ourselves from the kind of silence which keeps us trapped. So maybe the strangeness comes from the unfamiliar feeling of freely expressing ourselves.

      I was watching a rather silly TV show which every now and then says something not silly at all. It was addressing the concept of secrets – when we keep a secret it physically affects us in a way which can be unhealthy – it increases stress and has a knock on effect energy-wise and neurologically. Whereas when we share a secret it physically affects us in a healthy manner – releasing stress and chemicals and whatnot, energy, which is beneficial.

      A narcissist often goes silent to keep their secrets, they have many (some are ones which are inane – not to them of course, others are not inane at all) and they are in a constant state of stress because of it. Their silence is often a fear-response, a flight into silence from a fright – a secret has been exposed. Our reaction to their silence is partly our own, it triggers our own story, but it is also a reaction to all the stress with which they infuse their silences. We are smelling their fear, it’s making a big stink (like a noxious fart) and experiencing it as our own (who farted?). Being in the physical presence of a narcissist can alter our own physical well-being due to what they are emitting – and that’s when the lines get blurred.

      The best tactic to use when dealing with a narcissist is to remember everything is about them, everything they say and do is all about them, and nothing is about you. So if they accuse you of something – that something is probably what they are doing, saying, thinking, being. Usually the only thing they get right about us is the good stuff – because they are telling us what they want from us, want to take and have from us for themselves, the bad stuff is all theirs – that’s them passing on their wound, disassociating from the things they can’t accept within themselves and so they give them to others.

      The more we share, the more we free ourselves, and the bonus of being open is that it often ripples out and helps others to do the same 🙂

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      1. Thanks so much. I have a problem with drawing attention through opening up, I guess it has to do with a childhood where I was accused of being dramatic, too sensitive or wrong for expressing myself. I think that is why I have all the oppositions to my ascendant in Leo.

        What you have explained makes a lot of sense. The narc used to accuse me of being full of fear. That must have been his own fear. This has helped me understand a lot. ❤

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        1. The first thought I had when I read this – “I have a problem with drawing attention through opening up” – was that it reflected Leo rising, both the gift and the challenge of it.

          One of the puzzles of human life is that we often have a natural urge to be a certain way and yet it seems as though every experience we encounter seems to oppose that urge. Every time we say ‘Yes’ to ourselves, something or someone says ‘No’. Sometimes the nurture we receive seems to be anti-nature. We are naturally being a certain way and then being told on a regular basis that the correct way of being is the opposite of us, the opposite of our nature?

          Narcs react to that kind of anti-nature nurture by trying to become whatever the ‘correct way of being’ is, and they try to do this by cutting themselves off from their nature, their natural self – however even though they severe ties with it, it does not severe ties with them. One of their greatest fears is that their nature will sabotage the perfectly correct self they have created.

          They also fear that the nature of others will sabotage their perfectly correct self.

          They try to control the nature of others to keep control of themselves, keep their own nature under control – so everything they say and do to others is something they are saying and doing to themselves.

          Thus when a narc tells you that you’re full of fear what they mean is that who you are (your nature) is frightening them – the fear they see in you is the reflection of their own fear looking back at them. If they tell you that it’s yours, then they can disassociate with it, it becomes your problem.

          The same applies to – “I was accused of being dramatic, too sensitive or wrong for expressing myself” – that is someone else projecting their own fears onto you and then making their problem yours. If they say it to you enough times you may end up adopting the problem as being yours. Then you, like them, will try to control your nature.

          The easiest way to control someone else is to get them to control themselves for you. If they control themselves, then you can maintain control of yourself – which is a large part of the reason why narcs manipulate others and try to control them, because they need to control themselves.

          Our natural way of being threatens their unnatural way of being… yet at the same time it fascinates them, it’s the lure of freedom.

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          1. Thank you. When we first met he said I was too vulnerable and therefore he could not be in a relationship with me. When I read my comment to you back this evening I wondered to myself, was it really true of me to say I have a problem with opening up, should I rather have written I have a fear of opening up, cause if the experience of opening up is being told the way you are is wrong its natural you would develop that fear. But as you said it is the person who is saying that’s problem. When I told a therapist about his comment a year out of the relationship she reminded me “being in a relationship is about being vulnerable” (a healthy relationship). I guess if I had been wiser and stronger at the time I would have known this was about him and his fear. On some level I did know it but as I have been reading on the Joy 2 Me site we are attracted to what is familiar and that is the genesis of our co-dependency. I had to go through that to replay a lot of unconscious stuff from my past. And it is so true “our natural way of being threatens their unnatural way of being”. Ive been reading this over and over and its just a brilliant blog. Will help so many people.

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            1. Did he perhaps really mean that you made him feel too vulnerable. Something about you, the way you are naturally, threatened his self-control, and yet that very same something which he feared, which he saw as a problem, his problem projected onto you as your problem, was also what attracted him. The wild and natural in us is both something fearful and something fascinating to narcs. Narcissists are terrified of vulnerability, of being vulnerable, they see it as a weakness – as in a chink in their armour, a flaw in their persona.

              Yet we know that being vulnerable is a strength. They can’t understand that view, or how we survive and thrive by embracing what they perceive as flaws, faults, weaknesses. Which is why they can’t ever accept our love, or ever truly love.

              The thing is that there is a positive aspect to co-dependency. It’s actually a necessary natural human trait, and under ‘healthy’ circumstances it is cooperation, partnership, mutually beneficial symbiosis. Like certain plants and insects, both prosper from their co-dependency. But as with any trait, it has a negative expression as well as a positive one.

              With narcs pretty much all natural human traits and behaviours become negative. But with a non-narc those same things become positive.

              Thanks for the heads-up on the site, I’ll check it out later 🙂

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  10. Ursala – This is a brilliant post and I adore every insightful line. The diagram at the bottom is genius.

    I wonder if you can help me ‘interpret’ what happened to me? it is extreme silent treatment
    .
    I have posted here about being raised by an NPD grandparent who discarded/disowned me returning me to my unattached, unavailable PD mother. My sister and I were raised or more accurately not raised by the same mother as I, except after my mother and I were discarded. Although I went no contact with my mother while my sister seemed determined to save her, even while my mother did unspeakable things to her.

    My siter called a year ago saying she was terminally ill. I hadn’t heard from her in a substantial way in almost a decade. I had received cryptic messages, posts relating to random benign things that happened in our childhood, like ice cream stores and movies, but never an actual conversation even though I tried

    After her marriage to the 3rd people clearly on the spectrum, the third one I suspect was a sociopath, from whom she had a lifetime restraining order, she moved 3,000 miles to a tiny town and completely ‘reinvented herself’. She married for a 4th time, joined a fundamentalist religion, and after that marriage, my sister who I had bailed out of and supported through those prior three disasters ceased to exist as I knew her. Now her life was perfect with a ‘perfect’ husband and their perfect church. I missed having a relationship with her and reached out to her many times but just all very superficial stuff and always included ‘how perfect their life was’.

    When she called to say she had a very aggressive cancer that would kill her quickly , I was disarmed and dropped those boundaries I’d normally have – like where were you for the past 10 years, why share now? Why did you call me? .

    In this process of getting to know her again, I started to learn about her marriage. They had a very closed unit meaning, lots of acquaintances but no one really knew anything about my sister – who she was before she and her husband got to be these ‘new shiny church people.’

    I got over 10,000 texts from my sister during those 10 months asking for advice, support, travel cross country to take her to look at experimental treatment. Many things I thought her husband would do. If I did get recognition for anything I did for her, it was sort of in a back handed why. “Gee who would have thought you would turn out to be such a capable person, Destiny. Who would have thought you’d be philanthropic or a good sister. There were many slights but I stuffed them b/c I realized there wasn’t a lot of time and I was just interested in trying to make the best transition and ending I could with my sister, given our disordered childhood. I turned myself inside out to try to be there for her.

    During the 10 months I realized not only didn’t her husband actually work, but he depended on my sister for everything including most critical thought. He drove a Porsche while my sister drove a car with 300,000 miles on it. She worked 70 hours a week while he ‘tinkered’. Although my sister was clearly ‘in charge ‘ of all adult matters, it was obvious her life revolved around making life easy for her husband. We were always talking about how ‘jeffrey was too sensitive to do this so would I help her with a difficult task ’. Or Jeffrey couldn’t ever say that, so would I help her with thus and such. It felt like there was no Jennifer only a “Jeffrey and I’ and her every step was with his comfort in mind and he somehow controlled her, even though he appeared very passive.

    Although he seemed totally dominated by her and her ‘controlling nature’ as even their friends commented, I was shocked by the load placed on my sister, even while she was in hospice – he couldn’t seem to make any decisions without her and she seemed almost unable to die b/c she was so afraid he couldn’t take care of himself. She was apologizing to him for ‘ruining their summer’ from the hospital bed.

    In late June, I was called by him to come cross country as she wasn’t expected to survive much longer. When I arrived, he was cold, almost rude to me. Completely withdrawn. I chalked it up to grief and fear. He really never accepted that she would not beat this and it was almost as if he had a complete break. Meanwhile my sister was experiencing a horrible, hideous, slow death but she was still responsible for all major decisions and his financial wellbeing.

    He would go to work and I’d spend time at the hospital with her . She was alternating between hallucinations and lucid moments where we would laugh and be like sisters. She kept telling people how far I came to be with her and what an ‘integral part of her team I had been and how she couldn’t have done it without me.’
    One morning I innocently asked him, ‘ what’s up?” and his frosty answer was ‘my wife is dying, that’s what’s up. ‘ He didn’t come to the hospital that day. He said he felt ‘left out of decisions’ and that she wasn’t all information with him as she was sharing things with me while he was at work. I thought it was ridiculous but again chalked it up to extreme grief. He would have her alone than feel as though he wasn’t getting 100 percent of her.

    Then on the fourth morning, two days before I was meant to go home, he sent some friends to the hospital and told my sister that he wanted her to tell me that he really didn’t realize that death was so soon and he wanted my sister to explain to me why I should leave. It seemed unlikely he wouldn’t have know time was near. She was inoperable and the average expectancy was just a few months and she was way past that.

    I was furious that he placed this burden, having my sister in hospice, to ask me to leave so he could be more comfortable. I tried to communicate with him directly but he would not speak to me and blocked me He told my sister he would come back to the hospital when he could be alone with her.

    That’s when the penny dropped. I did leave that day. My sister was crying. No one could believe that in her diminished skeletal state she got out of bed and walked me all the way to the elevator to say goodbye and make a joke and take a picture with me.

    I got texts from her for two days until she went home to die. I was then blocked from the facebook page with her updates. I was blocked from her phone and his. I asked an acquaintance that I had made there during my visits take the phone into my sister and ask if I could say goodbye to her. Her husbands response was ‘it was Jennifer’s request to not have communication with her sister’. A few days after I got home , I received a beautiful inscribed bracelet that my sister had ordered via a friend for my birthday saying ‘she is my sister, not by blood by rather by love’.

    I got no more information on her until July 4th when she died despite my continued efforts. I tried to contact people my sister had introduced me to that I maintained relationships during her illness but they told me they were not permitted to give information. A neighbor called to tell me she had passed. I was blocked by him on the condolence page, on the page with the information about the date of her service, via telephone and text. An hour after my sisters death, he defriended me on both of their facebook pages. (LOL) WHO DOES THIS?

    I have no idea where her remains are and this all threw into quite a depressed spiral.

    First I lost a sister, then, I was discarded as in my child hood. Also, I was humiliated by the treatment I received because everything I did with my sister was for HIS wellbeing and financial future.

    I guess I am asking you, is there some type of narcissist that controls through their ‘helplessness’ there in getting all of their partners attention and in this case, sucking dry her life force. I would never have thought of him as NPD, except because of my sisters history with partners and the way in which he completely severed my relationship with her and smeared me in a way by telling people my sister wished no contact with me. I know she would not do that. In fact, I think it probably took great courage for her to reach out to me initially after such a long estrangement.

    Do you have an idea what happened here and how I can find ‘the gift ‘ in this? I am sorry i could not do better at editing this.

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    1. Thank you for sharing 🙂

      In answer to – is there some type of narcissist that controls through their ‘helplessness’ there in getting all of their partners attention and in this case, sucking dry her life force.

      Yes, there is – The Covert Narcissist, whose favourite MO is to ‘play the victim’. Also sometimes known as The Stealth Narcissist, The Vulnerable Narcissist or a Passive-Aggressive Narcissist, and many other terms depending on who is writing about them.

      Covert Narcissists are generally considered one of the hardest Narcissists to deal with because of their extreme denial – they completely believe their own BS thus making it believable to others, and people usually only see through them after the damage has already been done. Their NPD is difficult to spot because it is not the stereotypical type of NPD, the usual criteria for spotting that someone is a narcissist is concealed. They often appear to be the exact opposite of a narcissist. The red flags are there but they look like white flags. Usually they are only spotted after a certain period of exposure to them, and your instincts and intuition kick in and scream that something is seriously wrong with the picture they have painted of themselves and of you.

      Your Nadar – Narcissist radar – did pick up on his NPD. However you were distracted by the circumstances which were overwhelming, and besides there is nothing you could have done in this scenario other than what you did – what you did was the best way to handle it. You put your sister’s needs to connect with you and your needs to connect with her first, and made the best of a very complex and painful situation. The time which you had with your sister is a gift for you, and it was for her too. That he tried to steal it away from both of you is typical of a narcissist, but in stealing it, especially with his actions after her death, he managed to highlight what was most precious about it, which is something which he can never have and was not able to steal despite his attempts to do so. Your deep connection with your sister – your love.

      Some articles on this type of Narcissist:

      http://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/stop-walking-eggshells/201111/two-types-narcissists-pose-somewhat-different-challenges

      http://goodmenproject.com/ethics-values/5-signs-youre-being-played-by-a-victim-fiff/

      http://sparkster.hubpages.com/hub/The-Covert-Narcissist

      https://www.firstwivesworld.com/index.php/my-narcissistic-ex-husband/item/8320-passive-aggressive-narcissists-are-eternal-victims

      http://thenarcissistinyourlife.net/category/covert-narcissists/

      If you do a search for – Covert Narcissist – you will find lots of information which may help you to figure out what went on and why.

      As for finding the gift in it – there are many options but I would say that in this particular case the gift is in physical form – the bracelet and the engraving upon it which your sister gave you, and the way she managed to get it to you and give it to you – that is the gift, a very deep and powerful gift. Focus on that, and on the inspiration it holds. That is a gift which will keep on giving in a way that is beautiful!

      My condolences. Let the grief be a healing one ❤

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  11. Wow what a graphic. I will need to revisit that.
    What you write is such great advice. I do hope someone who needs it reads this. I can remember so much during an affair with a narcissist, he would sulk, get angry, screech away in his car and say nothing. There were also times I’d have to endure the silent treatment in the car if a disagreement or argument took place.

    I remember how desperate I would always feel to get him to stop. How much I “needed” him to not be angry and how punished I felt. It was awful and looking back now, I’d wished I’d had the wherewithal to see it as a benefit.

    But if ever I am in such a position I will remember this.

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    1. Thank you 🙂

      I have one particular experience of a silent treatment which is forever burned into my memory – of me curled up into a sobbing ball on the floor of a tiny bathroom, feeling violently ill and tremendously alone, after having confronted a narcissist – basically all I did was say that I did not want to do something – something which when examined logically was not something I should have been doing anyway but which the narcissist had decided it was my duty to do for them – my saying that I did not want to do it and was not going to do it was an ordinary thing which a healthy person would have shrugged off but of course a narcissist makes a monumental calamity out of inanities – the narcissist went ballistic, had a massive tantrum, then stormed out leaving a thunderous silence behind for me to be crushed by it, feel my wrongness and the awfulness of my existence, etc – it’s one of the memories I used to strengthen myself, to remind me of what a complete nutcase my mother was and still is.

      That was one of the first times I realised that the narcissist’s silent treatment can backfire on them and become a refuge for their victims. It gave me time to think things through, to logically process what had actually happened rather than what the narcissist thought had happened. I’d had enough of these sorts of experiences to know that filling the silence with my worries, fears, doubts, etc, was pointless, a broken record which solved nothing and only served as a means to torture myself. The narcissist didn’t give a damn what I felt and thought, they were too busy being wrapped up in what they felt and thought. So why torture myself over them?

      Of course it was a bit more complex than that, our realisations come and go and we can forget what them. It took me a long time to break the ingrained habit of forgiving and forgetting, to untie all the narcissistic knots, but that moment started a change which over time… has led to a post like this one 🙂

      The important thing is to learn from our experiences, and through them to slowly understand ourselves, others, and all the possible perspectives which exist. The benefits, like flower, come after a process of growth which can be painful, like a bud pushing its way out of the hard shell of a seed then through the earth, seeking the light. We eventually get there in our own time.

      This sort of reasoning can be applied to other types of scenarios and not just the silent treatment – the way others behave towards us is usually a reflection of what is going on inside of them rather than because of us. So whether someone is giving us the silent treatment or the pressuring treatment… we need to pause and ask ourselves what is really going on. Sometimes we’re so busy reacting, we can forget to look at what we’re reacting to and examine it more closely. Old habits die hard… but they can die.

      Best wishes ❤

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  12. Very useful and exhaustive- I will read it each time i have to severe a relationship after trying a million times to find a solution or a way to sort it out, that is not denying myself, and then feeling guilty as i had to choose to survive… I love your handwritten maps, they are so rich with association of ideas and philosophical reflection, it’s a picture of your thinking act!

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    1. Thank you 🙂

      I’m having fun with the mind maps, it’s an intriguing practice and idea. I usually only do this in my head but then my head suggested scribbling the self-portrait of a thought.

      There’s a great website, very inspiring, which has loads of these types of mind map doodles and drawings – http://www.mindmapinspiration.com/

      I like the idea of adding colour to them, maybe next time I’ll break out the crayons or do a collage using photos or… something too ambitious which will never get done 😉

      Guilt is a good subject for a mind map! I’ve often found when exploring guilt that it’s not guilt at all, or it belongs to someone else. Following the connections of certain emotions and thought-feelings can be very revealing, insightful and liberating!

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  13. Wow! This is fabulous, Ursula. It is hard-hitting, fascinating to read – and explains so much. Thanks for writing and posting it today. xxx

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      1. Wow is right…and so thankful to have found your writing (wisdom), so awesome that people can share and connect, help, others…wonder what did we do before!

        Lately I’m struggling with being over sensitized to NPD and realizing I have wounded my self-esteem being too self-critical about my own “healthy” narcissism, because I recognize that being raised and as a kid idealizing a convert narc actually had a powerful residual trait effect on me; their like toxins that cause proximal symptoms and leave residue that become a part of our closeted skeletons. Sadly for them our biggest differences is that they “can’t” trust in love as an all-powerful force of nature.

        Indeed they most likely distrust nature (because of their own personal nature) and have, like we all have to some degree, forgotten how to flow with the natural forces…as we did when younger until the big “split” occurred. But as you mention in healthy vs unhealthy narcissism, healthy is to seek with a hopeful heart of becoming associated with greater natural forces motivated through humility and by love; a desire to join and be more one of force; where as “warped” narcissism, IMO, wishes to control and own those natural forces and if silent in nature is not because they are listening, but because it is scared of being exposed to a greater form reality whence we all have arrived from.

        Thanks again for sharing…Love and peace to all.

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        1. Thank you 🙂

          I’m just simply sharing the results of my own inner and outer struggles. The friction of the struggle can be creative, destructive, obstructive and liberating, sometimes all at once.

          I used to think that being self-critical had damaged my self-esteem, because it had and does to a certain degree, but it can also strengthen it, it just requires a bit of flipping things around, seeing the gifts which the curse offers, and also figuring out how much of the self-criticism is actually yours and how much of it is the absorbed voice of the narc – they never shut up or stop criticising so absorbing their voice until it becomes your own is unfortunately too easy, it’s brainwashing/programming. However once you recognise the particular tone of their voice, you can start to remove it from yourself, and as you do that you begin to hear things differently, you hear yourself differently because you can actually hear your own voice no longer drowned out by their voice, and you also hear them and what they said differently, and that changes how you hear what everyone says, narcs or non-narcs.

          Being over-sensitised to NPD happens, it’s how awareness works. When something enters our conscious awareness, especially if it breaks open a dam which has been keeping us trapped in some way, and we seek to know more about it, we tend to see it everywhere even when we don’t want to, when we want a time-out from it, it’s how our mind learns. So the early stages of learning, understanding, knowing, can be a bit intense, it can be like drowning in a flood of information, but eventually we learn to swim and the intensity ebbs, the pace of learning flows at a more balanced rate.

          When we delve into our story, it can be unnerving at times. The challenge is to be gentle with yourself, trust your true nature, trust yourself, that is a part of love. We’re always stronger than we know, in many beautiful ways.

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