I often hear from my readers about how they can’t seem to sever the ties and leave their Narcissistic partner. They’re still holding onto hope that the nightmare will end and the love they’ve been holding out for will become a reality; the intimate encounters are good; the Narc contributes to the community/is religious; the Narc is making an effort to make them jealous, so they must still care…the list goes on.
I know how that feels. I’ve been there.
How do you get the Narcissist out of your head, stop obsessing, and stop ruminating? It comes from understanding that the Narcissist does not see you as an individual. You are only in their life as a disposable resource. All the words of love and promises are lies. Here, I list the top 5 reasons why you need to make the commitment to yourself to leave the toxic relationship and begin your path to recovery.
1) The Narc has/is destroying the very makeup of what makes you…you. Your strengths of confidence, business savvy, intelligence, warmth, caring, and belief in yourself, your values…all in danger of oblivion. Look at yourself today compared to the person you were before meeting the Narc. Is there even an inkling of that former person left? Have you gone against everything that ever meant anything to you? Have your friends, family, and children been included in the Narc’s twisted games?
The reality is that one day you will begin to loathe yourself for allowing this person to take away your sense of self, subject your loved ones to his/her poison, and allowing them to kill happy memories that you could have made with the people who matter to you the most. You will realize you were dealing with an imposter and that you enabled him/her to continue their destruction while stealing precious moments that you can never get back.
2) Staying in a toxic relationship subtracts years from your life. Do you know what happens when you are in a state of constant stress and your body is in perpetual fight-or-flight mode? The effects include damage to your body, mood, and behavior. Stress damages your DNA, making you sick both physically and mentally, and can subtract up to eight years or more from your life span depending on your genetic predispositions. Your body’s systems fall out of sync, which in turn ages you prematurely. When your DNA becomes damaged, your body has a higher risk of developing cancer and other life-shortening illnesses.
Do you have children? Do you want to be around when they graduate from college? Don’t you want to enjoy what life you have left?
Staying with a Narcissist will not enable you to do those things. If you do make it to your child’s graduation, you’ll probably hobble in on a cane or worse, in a wheelchair wearing an adult diaper and a stent from the quadruple bypass you had.
3) If you have children, there will come a point where you won’t be able to hide the toxic traits of your relationship. You will eventually lose strength, due to depression and feelings of hopelessness, and hiding the toxicity will become next to impossible.
Do you argue, shout, and/or cry in front of your children when the Narc is around? What do you think happens during this time of your child’s development when they witness their parent(s) doing these things? Aside from the emotional outbursts, does the Narc do mean things to your children, such as make fake promises to them; take their money that they find lying around; make jabs at their appearance; pump your child/children for information when you’re not around; include your child/children in their sick mind games?
If you can’t leave the Narcissist for your own benefit, then do it for the sake of your children. They are helpless in this situation and they depend on you to protect them from harm. Don’t give your children a bad start to their own ideas of what’s normal in a marriage/relationship. They are building their belief systems now. Make sure they have a solid foundation by leaving as soon as possible.
4) Many victims of Narcissistic Abuse go on to commit suicide. I have read sad accounts of this happening, many times. It happened because they finally gave in to the belief that their situation was inescapable. Avoid this by going No Contact. Don’t give them even a small crack to wedge themselves back into your world. Delete all their attempts at communication such as emails and texts. Block them from your phone and email. Once they know you are ignoring them, they may try having their family or friends to contact you. Don’t fall for it…cut ALL ties with the Narcissist. I’m talking Full Metal Jacket…you are on a mission, don’t let the enemy get to you.
If you have children with your Narc, document everything. Write in journals, keep an ongoing Word document, keep phone records, back up your text messages, see if you have any friends or family willing to testify if you go to court. Give your Narc the times they can call and stick to those times. Of course, this might be different if your child is in the care of the Narc, such as their court-ordered visitation. I always keep myself open to calls during these times. If my Ex tries to open up a conversation about anything not related to our son, I hang up.
No Contact is important because it contributes to cutting the emotional ties. Don’t give yourself the chance to hear their voice. After a while, you’ll feel yourself getting back to normal, little by little, day by day. On the other hand, if you give in to them, you’ve wasted another day of your life.
5) You open yourself up to STDs and other illnesses. Yep, that’s right. Narcissists are notorious for cheating. As such, you put yourself at great risk of contracting various forms of Sexually Transmitted Diseases. I know it’s hard to accept, because most likely you’ve been monogamous all along, but not the Narc. Don’t project your values of a committed relationship onto them because it will leave you in a constant state of confusion and frustration.
If your partner is a Narcissist and you want children in your future, the best thing to do is stop fornicating with a serial cheater. There are diseases out there that will literally destroy your reproductive system. Not to mention that you could contract something like herpes, where you’d be obligated to inform any future lovers you have of your disease. Just imagine how embarrassing that would be. How would you react if a new romantic interest informed you they had herpes or, worse, AIDS? Don’t do that to yourself.
All of these scenarios have long-term, far-reaching consequences. Forget about that fairy tale romance with your Narcissistic partner, unless your idea of a fairy tale is likened to that of The Little Mermaid, who was eventually found washed up on shore…