If you are a highly sensitive person, chances you are in or have been in a relationship with a narcissist.
Narcissists are master manipulators and liars with a need for admiration. They have a sense of entitlement, persuasive pattern of grandiosity, sense of self-importance and a true lack of empathy and humility.
Highly sensitive people or empaths are often a narcissist’s target because they are deeply caring, empathetic people whose purpose in life is to support the healing in others. Yet due to their intense sensitivity, empaths often struggle to create healthy boundaries for themselves, giving in to co-dependency and habitual self-sacrifice.
One of my favorite descriptions of this dynamic is from Ross Rosenberg from his book and teachings in the Human Magnet Syndrome: Why We Love People Who Hurt Us. He provides thorough detail and profound answers as to why patient, giving and selfless individuals (co-dependents) are predictably attracted to self-centered, selfish and controlling partners (emotional manipulators).
Narcissists can be very charming, charismatic and persuasive. In the beginning of a love relationship they listen to your likes, needs and desires mirroring it as their own, echoing your hopes, dreams and interests with the intent of helping you believe how perfect you are for each other. They shower you with their love-bombing, flattery and idealization. You may receive a constant barrage of love notes, compliments, flowers, chocolates, love songs, constant affection - grand romantic gestures - to achieve their ultimate goal of hooking you.
However, once they lose interest in you (and they will most likely upon accomplishing their purpose or if they become bored) they suddenly let you go without any warning or reason. They display no emotion or remorse, and it is as though you are with a totally different person. The charming, vibrant, loving partner you knew prior is now cold, calculated and unresponsive. This is inconceivable to a highly sensitive person, yet comes easily for a narcissist who is incapable of humility or empathy. All perceived displays of past emotions from the narcissist was simply the mirrored emotions of their target. Deception at its finest.
Ending a relationship that is seemingly going well with no discussion, warning or explanation is yet another form of manipulation, abuse and control through silence and not letting go. The abrupt shock is traumatizing; the lack of information is deplorable. These methods of control create crazy-making in the narcissist's target and cause deep-seated emotional trauma.
If you are in a relationship or are a survivor of an emotionally abusive relationship with a narcissist, whether it is a love relationship, parent, friend, sibling, boss, etc., there is hope! The first step is awareness - and today you have become more aware. There is a reason this information has crossed your path.
Healing you is absolutely critical to loving you.
The most effective way to rediscover your personal power and influence is to fall in love with YOU. This is essential so that you do not fall prey for another unhealthy relationship; the lesson will likely be harder and more profound the next time around. Some of the essentials of loving yourself unconditionally are learning to set boundaries, listening to and respecting your needs, learning to say no, releasing anger, and forgiving others - most importantly you. It is also important to realize you can never “heal” the narcissist in your life. Any form of healing must originate from within the narcissist.
I spent many years healing from my narcissistic and emotionally manipulative relationships. The first step was to stop and take notice. I was unconsciously attracting these very sick, hurtful and controlling relationships not only in my romantic life but in other work, social and familial situations.
Through my healing journey, I re-discovered my innate strengths, learned to set boundaries, and gained the confidence to appreciate and use them to fulfill my life purpose. I no longer need to live up to anyone else’s expectations of me, just surround myself with likeminded people who understand and welcome me for who I am. It was not until I consciously did the work – first in understanding and taking responsibility for my role in the relationships and then in learning how to let go and heal, set boundaries and gain confidence – that I am now able to spot unhealthy targets in a split second. My relationships are much healthier now. The freedom feels really amazing!
When you have reached the point on your healing path where you can be thankful for the relationships and grateful for the lessons you acquired, you’ll no longer feel sad, hurt, angry, lonely, or regret. It takes a lot of work, time, forgiveness – especially of self. But it is so worth it to find your beautiful inner self. You will feel a newfound energy, confidence, and spark for life. Music will sound good again. The sun will shine differently. You will attract amazing, healthy people into your life. Most importantly? When you see the person that hurt you, they have no impact on you anymore. This is the feeling of indifference. And that, my friend is true healing.
If you relate to any of the above, you may be suffering from unhealthy patterns. Take some time for you and assess. Talk with someone. First and foremost, re-discover beautiful you: your likes and dislikes, interests and passions, wants and desires. It is time to stop putting the expectations and wishes of others ahead of your own.
Bottom line? You are the most important relationship and person in your life! If you don’t put your yourself first, love yourself first, you won't attract healthy, positive people into your life that will love you equally either.
It is time for you beautiful - you are worth it...
Contact Me to schedule a free confidential conversation. Let's discuss how I can help you find the resources to help you on the road to loving you!
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Pamela Schubloom, CHC, CPC, AADP
Certified Holistic Health Coach
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