Your behavior, the days and weeks following a breakup with a Narcissist, sets the tone for the rest of your life. It is at this stage that you make the choice, whether or not, you will treat yourself with respect, or send your dignity down the river. If you were the one that initiated the break up, you will ride the feelings of empowerment for a while, but like most emotions they are fleeting and eventually unwanted thoughts begin to creep in.
It’s here that you are faced with a giant truth, that the object of your obsession will no longer be a part of your life. The sorrow, remorse, fear, panic and doubt become overwhelming, because for so long the Narcissist in your life has been the center of your Universe and now there is an enormous, gaping void where they once stood.
It’s normal to feel sad, afraid and even anxious when a part of our lives is over. When someone is right beside you one day and gone the next, you are going to feel uncomfortable. It’s a shock to your system. You’re going to feel withdrawal symptoms. You’re going to feel fear. You’re going to wonder if you did the right thing and if he’s going to trot off and live happily ever after with someone else. Making a life altering decision is hard. Sticking with it is even harder.
Never forget that a Narcissist usually does have a lot of really great qualities. You wouldn’t have stuck around if they were all bad all the time. I had a reader say that, ‘if you took away all the bad stuff, we really do have a great time together.’ It’s this absence that we come to miss the most, this charming, fun, humane side. It is all too easy to forget the reasons why the relationship is where it is – what got you here – what drove you to end it. All this ‘bad stuff’ is the reason you’re here and it hasn’t gone and won’t go away. The problem is that the courage and the anger that propelled you to end it in the first place doesn’t stay, but unfortunately the fear is so strong, it keeps pulling you back in.
While you are in the immediate post breakup stage you are at a crossroads, because you know what you should do, but you lack the courage to do it. A reader told me that within a week of her leaving the relationship, she was back at his place, just hanging out. She missed him and not seeing him was just too painful, and she was pondering a friendship.
When we think about this logically, does it make sense to be “friends” with someone that cheated on us, lied to us, betrayed us? Are those the qualities you would look for in a friend? When we agree to a friendship we are putting them on a pedestal and showing them that we will accept any little piece of them because any piece of them is better than nothing at all. You send a very clear message, that you are they type of person that doesn’t respect themselves enough to walk away from someone who has abused them. Your Narcissist likely didn’t respect your boundaries when you were a couple – so expecting them to respect the boundaries of friendship is insanity.
Because let’s be honest, it sounds so nice to say let’s be friends, but what you’re really saying is, I will accept everything on your terms and I value you and your needs above my self-respect. Because what ends up happening is that the relationship continues as it was, except this time they have your permission to ignore your needs and wants, make everything about them, date other girls, and not care about your feelings because,’ hey – we’re just friends’. You even get the added bonus of having a seat, up close and personal, to watch them hone in on another target and relegate you to the back of the harem bus.
I’ve said it once I’ll say it 1000 times, you cannot be friends with someone that you are still in love with. While you may still hold out hope that you will find a way to get back together, but by the time they feel comfortable enough where they feel you aren’t going anywhere, they will certainly start talking to you about other women and you can be damn sure that you have become Harem material. Remember, you never go from Harem member to girlfriend – you can definitely go from girlfriend to Harem member, but never the other way around. You may hover in top Harem position for a while, but as soon as someone shiny and new comes along, it’s to the back of the bus with you. So if your attempt to hold on to your guy at any cost lands you in friend/harem member country you are not doing yourself any favors. What you are signing up for is more disrespect, more hurt, with a side order of humiliation, all because it hurt too much to say good-bye when you should have.
Many people will break up with a Narcissist hoping for a better strategic position. They hope that when faced with the prospect of life without them that their Narcissist will see the error of their ways and change their behavior. The problem is that of course a Narcissist is going to chase you, change isn’t easy for them either. They will put in a temporary effort, but not because they’ve mended their ways and will now do things your way, but because they get what they want in the present – which is you – back on their terms.
In all unhealthy relationships there must be a point of no return. There has to be some point, some line that when crossed a switch goes off in your head that says, I respect me enough to know that this is not a good or healthy situation for me and I need to walk away. There must be consequences when someone doesn’t treat you with the love and respect that you deserve. A Narcissist has no problem saying and showing their partners that they think only about them – why is it so hard for us to put us first? You must be willing to say, “You cheated on me – and that’s a deal breaker. You have clearly demonstrated that my feelings mean very little to you, so I’m going to respect myself enough and end this.
Sure breaking up with someone is hard, but having courtside seats to their next relationship is even harder. It’s nuts to offer up support and relationship advice to an ex that mistreated you. So do yourself a huge favor and understand that time is a miraculous thing. Breaking up with a bad man is like pulling a band aid. It may hurt like hell at first, but once the sting is gone, you will feel better than you have in a long, long time.
So fight the urge to communicate and be friends with your ex and make this your new motto:
“There are consequences to your behavior and those consequences are, that you don’t get to treat me like that and still be a part of my life. It just doesn’t work that way. ” And mean it.
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This article was nice to read. Unfortunately, I’m in the crossroad you speak about and finding courage and anger has been challenging. I’m a lawyer and he’s a doctor. He’s the malignant narcissist and I’m the empath. I am a strong, fearless woman in every other aspect of my life except when it comes to my husband who has been confirmed a cheater at least twice. Unconfirmed 3 other times, but suspect behavior nonetheless. How does one break what seems to be this string just keeping me stuck? I know hope can drown all self-respect. Hope that he will change. Hope he will be able to be the person I deserve and thought I married. I want my self-respect back and I want to walk away powerful ready for a new, better chapter with the love I deserve. Why is it so difficult to get there?
I really appreciate this article. It can remain me I’m doing right and keep moving on for my future.
I finished him off for a year ago but I came back to him twice.. after that , I could totally block his contact no. and everything.
I didn’t know he is perfectly Narcissist until I hit this article. but now I do understand what he exactly was.
I’m not a local here, that’s why he thought it’s easy to control me or even if it’s not going well he doesn’t need to care because I’m foreigner here.. I was very disappointed on myself and looked back my behaviour for him was just horrible like a slave. I hated myself. I don’t think I can heal myself fast and do know it takes time. I’m still on the way..
I was in a 7 year relationship with my N. I moved out while he was at work a year ago last May. In 6 months it will be 2 years since i left. In that time he managed to talk me into a second chance based on fact he had a breakdown, lost the will to live and checked into psych hospital where he ead on suicide watch. It had been 4 months since i left him and i wad scared to death of being alone. He did a good job of convincing me i couldn’t survive without him taking care of me. He rattled off scripture, gave glory to God and told me i was right and he was wrong.
Nothing was diffetent. He was just managing his harem better but it was still intact and going strong. Not one thing felt different, well except he definitely had his temper under control now. That reconciliation lasted 1 month. I wad fortunate in that he had taken a job on opposite coast as me. But we still talked constantly on the phone. I was so full of anger. But i promised I’d support him through his job search (he had been fired). I also justified it because i was trying to recoup 3 grand he owed me. We both moved back home so were in same city.
That’s when i told him i didn’t love him and never would again. I said it but it mafe me so uncomfortable. I don’t like hiring anyones feelings apparently even someone who can hurt me. This is when i agreed to be “friends”. Problem is he is not capable of being friends. It started right off the bat. Him wanting to kiss me hello and goodbye on the lips. Holding my hands, rubinstein my butt. Bottom line is Ns especially his type have inappropriate boundaries and no moral compass. I didn’t have any love left for him. I knew it at this point but it didn’t make sense that i could not be friends with someone i had been with for nearly 9 years now. Well i finally figured out there is no sense in a relationship with an N. I’m now NC and at peace, meditating, decorating my home, building back relationship with my adult children. I’m NOT dating until i work on myself. I finally NC is the only way back to sanity and recovery. I’ve forgiven myself or in process. He molested my daughter after she had turned 18. That is hard and even harder to forgive yourself fir trying to be friends with someone who hurt someone you love.
I would have gladly been friends with both my ex narcissist husband and the last narcissist boyfriend. I have only recently realised why my ex husband is so venomous towards me and will do everything he can to make my life as difficult as possible. I didn’t realise he was a narcissist until my experience with my last boyfriend who was defiantly a sociopath. The relationship was so awful that I started reading about personality disorders and the penny dropped and I started seeing myself and my relationships in a new light. The think I miss most about my ex boyfriend is much we laughed , while I see the constant long phone calls as love bombing now I miss the uncontrollable laughter and those times we shared. When I think of these times I have to re-mind myself that the relationship was just based of a façade.
I am having trouble with deciding if the measure I must take against my narcissist is walking away or if I’m overreacting? There is a man in my life who is seeing someone else however has admitted to having feelings for me. We have been good friends for a while, at times overstepping the boundaries of a simple friendship yet never doing anything physical or anything, and I have grown huge feelings for him. He has claimed that the only reason we are not seeing each other instead of this other girl is his friend, with whom I have a history of bad blood with and this is understandable because they are such close friends. He has asked his friend if he would be alright with us together but he’s never received a straight answer- I’m getting the feeling that perhaps he doesn’t want a straight answer so that he can have it both ways; this other girl and I, without losing his greatest friend. I’m just so confused and frustrated with the situation because I love him so much, but I can’t invest any more of myself into this secret relationship that isn’t actually a relationship and I wonder if I should just cut myself off from him completely and end everything including our friendship.
Emilie the answer is simple – never put yourself in a position of being the other woman. If you want more than the other person does then you have to walk away. All this nonsense about his friend not liking you and him needing permission is just that – nonsense. How does that song go – When a man loves a woman…he’ll sleep out in the rain… if he wanted to be with you exclusively he would be with you exclusively. Period. Everything else is an excuse or a rationalization.
After moving overseas to be with him, & live his dream, I realized I wasn’t happy, and that it was all about him. I had to fight for getting time with him, inbetween his career & dream of becoming a professional golfer which always came first. There were so many red flags now that I look back, him telling me that I didn’t make things important to him important to me, that I was a negative person & that his way/beliefs were always right. He told me I had to change, yet when trying to compromise on anything he always said this is what I’m doing & I’m not going to change it. After 18 months of it, I’d had enough & told him I needed to follow for dreams too. He wanted children but would never commit to marriage yet told me I was the selfish one for still wanting a career of my own. Inbetween time I found a picture of a naked woman’s arse on his phone & he asked if I would fullfill his fantasy of watching me have sex with another man, which repulsed me & made me question why he would enjoy seeing his partner being intimate with someone else. I eventually told him I was going back to the UK & the response was what am I supposed to do out here on my own now?! I told him I wasn’t leaving because I didn’t live him but because I needed to fullfill my own dreams. Upon return, he told me 2wks later he’d met someone else so which I found hard to accept after the fuss he made about me leaving and wondered how he could move on so quick?! 6 wks later he was back in contact, I asked why, he said he just wanted to know how I was doing. More texts continued then he started asking for rude photos & I stupidly obliged. At Xmas we skyped & the constant contact continued for 6 more months until he came back to the UK & asked if he could come & visit me. I was excited but trying not to get too carried away, yet when we saw each other it was as though we’d never been apart! He showered me with gifts & we ended up in bed together, yet he made all the moves. He then returned overseas & continued for another 6 months with continuous texts/sexting at all hours, asking for photos, and suggested we booked a holiday together. He also started talk again of fullfilling his fantasy though this time with several men & in a spit roast position with him joining in. I was disgusted but went along with it thinking it was all talk. Then he lost his job so I suggested going out to see him instead thinking of him struggling financially & being there to support him, which he thought was a great idea. We spent a week together & he made all the moves as usual & behaved as though we were still a couple, yet on the last night did suggest we go find someone to join in our fun in the bedroom, though I managed to put him off as it was late & we were drunk. But we:d talked about me moving back out there next year & I thought everything was hunkydory. Until a week later on his birthday I went to post a message on fb & afterwards a picture appeared with him & a woman stood cheek to cheek, & her saying love you?! I had only text him that morning worrying that he might be spending the day alone, yet little did I know that he was with her! I never even got a thankyou for the card I’d left until I questioned him about her and the response I got what oh I’ve known her for a long time and she’s like that?! I asked for an explanation as to what was going on yet he said he couldn’t talk as at a friends house for dinner. A few days later after constant texts & no reply from him, she posts more photos of them at his friends house having lunch! I lost it, & told him to phone/skype me & talk face to face not send me a reply via email when he had time. And I got a text back saying I’m going to say goodbye now, I wish you well for the future but don’t contact me again?! I was devasted, distraught & confused. I asked why he’d behaved as he did for so long towards me & on holiday & 3 wks later got an email back saying you knew we were just friends, & I never pretended it was anything more? Then, go & enjoy your life, you’ve got lots to look forward to!? Patronising git! Unbelievable! I’m now about to start counselling but have been unable to sleep or eat, & have so many unanswered questions in my head about why someone would do that?! I have friends, but I also have boundaries & do not behave like that with anyone else!
Wow, the ‘just friends’ part really struck a chord with me! As im only just discovering that I’ve been in a relationship with a narcissist for almost 4yrs, & which ended 6wks ago!
Hello, I would like to extend my heartfelt thanks for such a wonderful article. It has been truly helpful and insightful. It isn’t because I’ve been doubting my decision to walk away from my N, and keeping the whole No Contact rule enforced… but there are some times I want to tell him what I truly think of him. I just write it down as passionately as I want it to be, and that often helps. But the more I think about it, the more I want to do something about him. Like warn his next target.. something, anything. I don’t want someone to be taken in the way I was. Maybe, I am too naive in thinking that she (his next target) will just scoff in my face, and not listen to me. Maybe, I would be wrong in telling her the true story. Help! I don’t even know who his target will be. He’s dangerous and very strong.. I am scared for them.. (you know, his future targets).
I spent 14 years in a relationship with a man who was honest enough to say he loved me, but did not want marriage in his life. I eventually wanted more and met, what I thought, was the perfect man. He was so good to me. He was very supportive developed close relationships with my teenage son and my best friend. He became part of my family.
We talked about marriage and kids. He basically moved in immediately although he did have his own house. I spent two years with him and then one Saturday night we had a minor disagreement and he didn’t speak to me for a week. I can count the days I wasn’t with him prior to this incident. Once we talked we broke up and he told me he had gone back to his ex. I found out the next day that he had married her. He spent every day and most nights with me leading up to the wedding. After I learned this I took him back. I later learned from his wife’s family that he had been seeing us both the whole time and had actually been with her for 11 years and married her after she gave him an ultimatum. I took him back a cpl more times and it was because he said he couldn’t function without me and he knew he had made the wrong choice. He said he would settle for just friends if he could just have me in his life somehow. I agreed and it never stayed “friends” for long. It has only been two months since he got married and despite knowing what he did, his wife has decided to stay. I love myself more than him and have met a new guy who I believe is genuine and not another Narcissist. This blog has been very helpful and I know he will never be happy with his wife and in time I hope she finds the strength to leave too. Being friends does not work.
When I look back 2 years ago I was such a happier person. I have known this man my entire life (39 years) but 2 years ago we both admitted to each other that we have always loved each other. He said everything I ever wanted to hear. I remember saying to a friend this just feels too good to be true. About 4 months later suddenly things changed overnight. He can make me feel the happiest I have ever felt but also give me the greatest sadness I have ever had. I have such a hard time understanding how he can treat me with such disrespect one minute and act like everything is fine the next. He completely disregards anything I say and refuses to validate feelings at all. The “rules” are not equal and if he get mad at something I do his “punishment” for me is to ignore me and then say that one day I will learn. Whenever I start to pull away and feel good he suddenly becomes that person he was in the beginning and draws me back in. I am not allowed to question him and if I do he just quits talking until the question goes away. I have caught him in countless lies but have gotten to the point that I know if I bring it up to him I will be in this cycle again of him not talking to me saying we were so close to happiness and I ruined it and maybe one day I will truly learn to love someone. I feel so lost and confused on what to do. I can’t imagine shutting the door on someone that has been such an important person to me since I was 4 years old. What I don’t understand the most is how can he continue to hurt someone like this that he has known his entire life as well. Giving up and letting go is so hard, especially knowing he will make me feel like everything was my fault. How can I continue to stay with someone that I know is destroying me emotionally. I am an extremely strong woman and very independent so why am I so different when it comes to him. I think about him all the time but everything seems to always be on his time. Funny how I can write him and he won’t respond for hours but if he writes me I have about 5 minutes to respond before he gets upset so I go out of my way to make sure I’m available just in case he writes. I have prayed so many times for the strength to get out. I wish I could find it in myself like so many of you have. I’m not sure I even know the difference between fantasy and reality anymore.
Today is 3 weeks since I last heard his voice and I am stronger each day – I do miss him – I do sometimes relive the now I know fake glory early days when I was loved the way I had always dreamed of…. foolish me for believing it was real.
This is the hardest kind of pain and unless you have been thru it – its hard for anyone to truly understand.
God bless you Savannah you cannot imagine how much strength your blog brings me.
we can all do this ladies do not let anyone treat you like dirt… I refuse to be a walking living breathing doormat anymore.
She, (my N) has actually said that I’m the guy that she’s dating… I’m the guy that she is going to marry… I’m the guy…
Thing is though, after the last 6 months of me complimenting her telling her just how beautiful she is and generally being at her beck and call… I am not the guy.
The constant abuse and being labelled as being “gay” or being “a woman” is too much…
As a welder I work hard, too hard with too much risk to put up with that…
I am very glad I read this article today…
Thanks for the lift and giving me the strength to get my life back…
I deserve true and real happiness.
I left the relationship, probably five times. I always went back. Nothing changed and I became a shell of my former, lovely self.
The change came when I found this site. I had never known the actions of an N before. My eyes were opened and I found there was a reason for the emotional basket case that I felt I had become. Every description and ways of my N were written here. I have left him for good. I have a NC set. I hurt, i’m sad but I’m also astonished that I allowed this to happen to me. I take time with myself these days to see what is was in me, that wanted to ignore all of the signs of a dysfunctional relationship. I’ve found a few. A hard lesson learnt but one learnt none the less.
I still cry at random moments but every day there’s an atom of the lovely me that returns.
We are all capable of digging for that strength that is needed to leave. That same strength is building my path toward someone that is truly worthy of all that I am and all that I have to give.
I know exactly how you are feeling……I’m in the exact place your broken heart is. I too have looked inward for reasons that I allowed this treatment from him….sometimes you have to ask the right questions to get the right answers. I hope that this gets easier as time goes on….Lord knows I have shed enough tears and exhausted all energies on this guy. Let’s hang tough!
Very good article. Even though I realize the abuse I received from my N I still am so tempted to be “just friends”…but in the same breath realize that this is not the way to go….I need to get past this fear stage.
WOW, you’ve hit the nail on the head. I have been living in purgatory for 5 years with a narcissist.
He asked me to marry him after I broke up with him the 4th time, I went back, we rode to Nevada with all the paperwork needed to get married & I came back unmarried and a hole inside me the size of Texas. And I still stayed thinking it would work out.
He has kept a secret relationship with a woman that he swears he’ll never talk to again. After 5 years of living with him, my stuff is still in the attic. I have no power in the household or in his life.
He’s very funny, people love to be in his presence which is one of the reasons I was drawn to him. But he cannot be communicated to. He will walk away if the going gets rough.
HE IS emotionally BANKRUPT!
Now I’m a walking hurt feeling. It’s up to me to get out. Wish me luck!
You can do it Sweet D. Everything you need is already inside of you. Good Luck!!!!!!!!!
I have realized that I am addicted to my Narcissist. I was raised by a Narcissist so the feelings are familiar. My self esteem is lacking. My subconscious does not believe I deserve better.
I have found myself wanting to “teach him a lesson” by letting him know how he hurt me. He’d then say that he’ll work on that area – still never apologizing or acknowledging that this is a big problem. He’d then start telling me how great our life is going to be. How he’s going to step it up and do as I ask. He’d use all the loving language. He tell me things like, “You are my dream come true.” “You understand me more than anyone ever has.” “We are perfect together.” “We are more than soul mates, we are Kindred Spirits.” “I’m so in love with you.”
The thing that amazes me is that I didn’t believe what he was saying but I went along with it. I wanted to hear these words from a man and I was hearing them. However, his actions were not loving, kind, respectful, etc.
Through this experience I have learned that if the person cannot walk the talk, you need to walk!!!
It seems to me that actions speak louder than the words; and with these behaviours the words are convincing but the actions don’t match. I suggest to anyone going through a painful relationship that it is time to start looking at your partner’s actions and ask yourself…are their actions considering my needs/wants too or just their own? Do they fulfill their promises or just TRY to fulfill them followed by excuses and half-truths or vague answers? Do they always seem to have emergencies or last minute problems that require their attention to be diverted from the plans so that they can address their own priorities? These are just a few of the warning signs I’ve come to recognize…albeit too late.
He is a conflicted man, with complex needs, and he doesn’t really know what he wants. He’s all over the place. He has a multitude of “things” going on at all times to avoid the development of himself and remains in this immature state thinking that it prolongs his youth. But he is mistaken. He is not a bad person and has some good qualities or you wouldn’t have been with him. He is still human. But to be with him results in conflict. Sorrow, pain, distrust. It resurrects the places where we’ve been hurt, neglected, abused and discredited. That is why so many women with painful family backgrounds end up with a man like him. This is why the 2 types come together. We can thank him for bringing this up for us, really, because it should force us to re-address our pain. And as we do we can become more whole, more authentic, more clear and at peace. We must make the choice to let go of the denial, the pain, and to become more REAL. As I have done so, it has become blatantly obvious, his stance on love, which is: immature, self-centered, perverse. We can leave these men loving them, and knowing that our hearts are true. Peace.
Very well said.
Thank you very much for this article. This hits home for me. I have been addicted to my N for 4 years. He recently pulled the “friend” card on my a few months ago. It’s been extremely difficult to be just his friend and play by his rules. I feel the longer I allowed this, the less self respect I have for myself because he has not problem reminding me that we are just friends. Why do I put myself through this and let him constantly write me or meet up for drinks? I feel so used. So, last night, I finally reached that point of no return. I let him know that I couldn’t do it anymore. I couldn’t keep accommodating to what only he wants and his rules. I told him that I loved him but he is not the same person I fell in love with years ago and I asked him to let me go so I can find happiness and someone that I can love that will love me back. I wished him the best then I sent the email and deleted the account from my phone. I think any response from him would have killed me because he never says anything I need or want to hear. He just hurts and disappoints me all the time. I finally reached that point. I want to be happy and I realized it will never be with him. Yes, I’m still feeling empowered but I know I will always miss that man I met years ago but he doesn’t exist, anymore. It’s time to move forward and stop looking for something that’s not there. Thank you, Savannah!!
They will leave you and trot-off to the OW or OW,s, leaving you behind to clear up the mess. I am divorcing a cheating, lying narc. who is trying to claim half the house I bought. He was imprisioned for 2 yrs after rape on his ex-wife but always denied it. Now I know better. The morph into another person once they have done with you. I was once a proud woman. This experience is like nothing I have ever known. They are evil, inhuman, will drain you dry and toss you aside like a broken-toy. I am going thro a extremely difficult divorce with The Devil. Pure Evil. They have no feelings, no love, no loyalty for anyone including their children. May Karma come to them quickly.
It’s truly amazing that despite KNOWING what horrible people these guys are. Remembering the TEARS and the PAIN they caused us we go back hoping it will be different. That makes as much sense as taking spoiled milk out of the fridge and putting it back hoping it will be better the next time… It will NEVER happen.
Just look at their past to see the others who were treated like crap and discarded before us. We need to look at ourselves and realize that despite being a WONDERFUL person, all that we GAVE to them, and DID for them — they still weren’t happy… That’s because THEY WILL NEVER BE HAPPY. NOBODY will ever be enough for them. Only because we have emotions, empathy and feel true love that it’s difficult for us to wrap our heads around their fate and we want to help. We can’t. It will only bring us more humiliation and pain. And, if you’re like me, you’ve had more than enough of that!
2BHappy you said it all! So very well said.
Thanks Kathy, it’s hard but getting better knowing he has nothing to offer but pain… Walking away is the only thing left to do, i don’t think he want to be the ‘better’ person he says he is with me, just another one of his lies.
Thank you, good timing. It has been a year since I last saw him and I was feeling sad.
It’s only been a few days since the end of my relationship with a N. Reading this article has fortified my resolve to be done with him. I am a firm believer in the adage “when the student is ready, the teacher will come.” You were are my teacher in this instance, and I am eternally grateful. Thank you!
My husband tried to pull the let’s be friends card when he left me for another woman.
We were still married. The night before he left he told me that he had met a new “friend” the woman that he was having an affair with. In his eye’s he wasn’nt married to me. He is complete narcisstic screwball. The relationship finished with her, now he is seeing another woman and proably many more. He will cheat on her, relegate her to the back of the bus with other booty calls. After 11 years of misery, cheating and lying, why would anyone be friends with a person like this.
Coffi. – My wife of 28yrs tried the “friend” card as well. She seemed shocked that I was angry. She has been lying about her affair but I’ve seen the texts. She found him a year or two ago and finally dumped me when I stood up to her. She sucked all life out of me and looked elsewhere when I had nothing more to give. I agree, I cannot be a friend. Unfortunately I now have to forget 30 years of lies and cheating.
What wise words Savannah.
I think not all are up for cheating though. I think that my husband never cheated, although his work and our children became his main focus from they were born. We stopped making love for half a year at a time… Not because I didn’t want but because he either came to bed very late or was busy constantly. He couldnt switch his brain off in the bedroom and what horrible things i have said to him that week! Which made me pull back and not wanting to be near him! I moved away from our family home with help and encouragement from my friend who is now, 4 years down the road, my true Husband of this life. It took a lot of grief, tears, talking ect to move on and with help from another friend, force a stop on verbal communication and stick to emails and text msgs. Simply because he twisted my brain every time we spoke. He still liced with the kids so it wasn’t easy. But through the years i have become stronger! They now live abroad so i sometimes live with them and speak to him on skype about the boys. Things are better and last year (after 3 years) HE finely asked for a divorsed. (Probably because his new friends found it odd that he’s wife lived with another man) I am glad we got through it. I’ve got stronger and joined a course held by womens aid and i am now not afraid to tell him when he is bullshitting or lying to me.. and he knows. We have had to make this work…for our children.
I finally found the strength to break a five off and on relationship off a year ago with what I suspect is a narcissist, I have had to change my personal phone numbers because of his constant contact even though he is now with someone else (Who I found out overlapped me). I ended up in counselling because I couldn’t understand how I could let someone treat me like he did…even a year later it is still hard, he also pulled the friend card but I refuse to go there.
He has waited down the road from my work and has rung my work wanting to meet up to talk and when I agreed he has cancelled at the last minute…I struggle with trying to understand this man and why he will not just let go, doesn’t he feel shame at his actions? Doesn’t he understand how much this hurts and upsets me?
Sandy, I’ve asked myself those very same questions. Where’s the shame? How can one huMAN being treat another so callously, so wrong! I have yet to find an answer. We keep moving forward. We keep taking care of ourselves. What made me seek counseling was the same question you asked yourself: Why would I even allow someone to treat me so poorly? We must learn to love ourselves!
Thank you for this post. While I did not end my relationship (he has ignored me completely for a month and a half), the ideas expressed here represent exactly how I feel. I found great comfort in them.
It’s been three years since my Narcissist left. Yes he left me because I couldn’t ADORE him and shower him adulation and sometimes money. I changed the way we interacted and started taking responsibility for myself,which of course he couldn’t tolerate.
Most of the last 2 and 1/2 years were just plane old hard. Me just going through the motions but recently, very recently I have begun to feel like the star in my own show. It has been hard. I read this blog, I read self help books and listen to tapes. I allow myself to be sad and I say to myself. Ok you may still love him— so what– get on with your life. Very slowly I am realizing how worth life I AM. This new perspective of my self is changing me and my life .
I am looking forward to the day when he becomes nothing to me and I can feel that day approaching. Yay. Nothing has changed but my SELF. Thank God because I was miserable before and am beginning to feel real joy and less misery. This blog helps We hold the KEY to happiness. WE can unlock the closed doors of happiness and simply walk on through. Go for it and leave THEM behind.
As usual, nothing could be further from the truth. I read your article about half-way through thinking, “This is good. I’ve done that. I’m doing well,” till I got the part to the “let’s be friends”. Oops. Last week my truck was hit and we’re carpooling. So he’s talking. We will carpool tomorrow to meet with the mediator. I just realized that I must listen to loud music-iPod fashion. Every little thing. But I’m doing better. He was crying his eyes out yesterday and I looked at him and walked right by. It has taken time to get here, and I think I’m going to make it.
And I’m going car-shopping. Heavens knows, it it had been him with the wrecked vehicle, he’d be car-shopping. It’s pretty darn obvious why he wouldn’t want me to spend “our” money on a new car for me; after all, this is making me carpool with him. It looks like we’re down to less than a month for the divorce to be final.
And if anyone is wondering whether it is possible to negotiate a property settlement with a narcissist . . . . LOL! The only thing that is keeping him negotiating is the knowledge that the judge will order everything auctioned if we can’t decide–and he is a hoarder to the core. We could not do this without a mediator. I tell the mediator where I stand: I want half and I don’t care what half except that it has to include the house–and I SHUT UP during the mediation sessions. I’m still not sure whether it will be a success; I’ll keep you posted. We should get the answer in a month.
I just need to update my last entry. Yep, wrecked truck, the divorce is final, and for some reason I end up with the 07 Benz. I do not argue, but now I am in Sarasota on vacation and sitting in the service department while the Benz is checked for some malfunctions to see if I can make the 1300 mile trip home! I would have been better off with a new Honda for the same price–much more reliable and cheaper to repair in the event of a malfunction.
But the point is also that the divorce is final and I have fought the urge to re-contact him–and I have now no plans of contacting him. Life can be better and I can more forward and discover WHO I am. A life without him. Day by day. Hour by hour.
Soo glad i found this blog, it’s spot on when it comes to my situation, and i draw a lot of strength from it as i’m about to finally let go of my N. This is a man i was briefly involved with 15 years ago and who contacted me again some months ago out of the blue. We met up because i was curious to see how he was doing and he spun a web of lies around me all over again. The reason for the break-up 15 years ago was that i couldn’t cope with his sudden change in personality, going from a warm and loving man to a cold and withdrawn person overnight without reason, but now i see it’s just the way a classic Narcissist behaves.
I almost gave up my marriage for this guy, thinking i had refound the love of my life, but boy was i fooling myself…. Telling him i couldn’t deal with being a mistress made him withdraw, because he’s not in control of this and can’t relate to my feelings. A red flag was also hearing him talk to his wife while i was in his car, he’s so demeaning to her, and she very much depends on him for everything (money, support etc.).
Over the last 15 years i’ve changed into a strong person and sometimes laugh at his behavior and the person he’s trying to portray, the smartly-dressed and successful businessman, always out and about looking for attention from other women, which annoys him, as this means i don’t adore or look up to him which gives him the attention he craves for.
I’m very tempted to contact him, because we have a lot of fun when we are together but i also realise that he will never be the man i want him to be, because i’ve created this illusion myself and it’s a fata morgana.
Promised myself i deserve better than a man who constantly needs other women’s attention, there’s no way he will ever change and i refuse to be another broken heart in a long string of women he’s been involved with. He will never change. The whole experience has taught me a lot about myself, so i should see that as one of life’s important lessons and move on. Strictly No contact is what i’m trying to live by now, and i won’t respond to any of his e-mails of text messages anymore, although it will take some courage as everyone who’s been in the same situation knows that it’s an addictive kind of love…
Savannah, thank you for your stories, it’s given me, and undoubtedly a lot of other women (and not to forget men) in the same situation the insights we need to turn our backs on the Narcissist in our lives.
“An addictive kind of love.” So true. Keep going; you’ll make it; walk away. Whether it is one day or 15 years. I have this vision of “leaving him behind in the muck.” Whenevever I engaged with him it was like he pulled me back in the muck and wrestled with me. I visualize myself having walked up the dry bank away from the muck. Onto the plaeteau. Still he calls me back. Still I look back. I have gone back so many times, but now I am much farther. I finally accept that he is REALLY a narcissist. For so long I was afraid to believe it–it was that I had a great excuse to escape from the abuse and I was afraid to use it