“This is your last chance. After this, there is no turning back. You take the blue pill—the story ends, you wake up in your bed and believe whatever you want to believe. You take the red pill and I show you how deep the rabbit hole goes.” ~ Morpheus, The Matrix
If you’ve seen the movie The Matrix, you’re probably aware of the concepts of the red pill and its opposite, the blue pill. According to Wikipedia, they are popular culture symbols representing the choice between embracing the sometimes painful truth of reality (red pill) and the blissful ignorance of illusion (blue pill).
The concept behind The Matrix has been around for centuries. In fact, the film was partly inspired by Plato’s Allegory of the Cave.
If you’re in a relationship with a narcissist, you may have learned by now that all of their pledges of love and promises of change are simply simulations. And, in order to continue on the path to the fake future the narcissist promises, you may be taking the blue pill every day in order to make their betrayals seem less traumatic.
“The Matrix is the world that has been pulled over your eyes to blind you from the truth.” – Morpheus
The Blue Pill
The blue pill helps you tolerate the lies around their infidelities. The blue pill aids in rationalizing – in your favor – the many clues that they aren’t devoted to you or the relationship.
The emotional pain that ensues from narcissistic abuse is all-consuming. In many ways, it is more damaging than the abuse itself because by the time one has discovered their partner is a narcissist, they’ve already internalized the lies, the condemnation, and the excruciating treacheries.
Your family and friends who’ve never experienced this have no idea why it seems to take you so long to get over it and move on.
“Unfortunately, no one can be told what the Matrix is. You have to see it for yourself.” – Morpheus
The grief from narcissistic abuse is complex and arduous to overcome. It is multi-layered and often easier to ignore than to cope with. The blue pill helps with the recurrent, cruel events that create PTSD triggers. This happens when the subconscious mind cannot process the frequency and viciousness of the emotional trauma that occurs when you discover the person you’ve shared your life with, have believed in, and have forgiven numerous times has absolutely no intention of changing…and in fact, has been taking you for a fool.
Taking the blue pill means less pain.
However, you know something is wrong…dreadfully wrong. You begin Googling why your partner lies all the time. Why they break up with you repeatedly, only to insert themselves back into your life. Why they disappear for days or weeks when you only tried to discuss the relationship. Why they’re so verbally abusive.
Then, you come across the term “narcissist”.
“What you know you can’t explain, but you feel it. You’ve felt it your entire life, that there’s something wrong with the world. You don’t know what it is, but it’s there, like a splinter in your mind, driving you mad.” – Morpheus
The Red Pill
In The Matrix, Neo takes the red pill and awakens in the real world. He is forcibly ejected from the chamber in which he has been lying unconscious, unaware that he has been nothing more than a life force – a source of food for a computer brain created to make people submissive.
The false reality of The Matrix was designed to keep humans from knowing they were being used. The people just carried on with their lives, oblivious to the fact that an abusive entity like the computer brain even existed.
Just like Neo, at some point in your journey through narcissistic abuse, you take the first red pill. You become aware of the scope and magnitude of narcissistic abuse.
The first red pill comes with a soul-shattering force which makes it hard to breath. You wish you could take the “blue pill” again and erase this new knowledge that you’ve been burdened with. But, just like in the movie, once you’ve taken the red pill, the choice is irrevocable.
You discover that you were nothing but a source of supply to the narcissist. Everything they said and did was a campaign designed to keep you ignorant to the truth. But now, you are no longer living in the narcissist’s mirage. You’ve awakened to reality.
Life After the Red Pill
Life after discovering your partner is likely a narcissist is difficult to navigate. You’ll often fall back into behaviors you engaged in while under the influence of the narcissist’s matrix. You’ll want to keep dosing yourself with the blue pill. You’ll likely give in to the many hoovering attempts before you realize it’s nothing more than a cycle – a pattern of deceiving you in order to bring you back into their false world.
They do this because they need your life force.
You may ignore the organic transition from having been their main source of supply to becoming their fall back. You’ll go from being their partner, fiancé, or spouse to being someone they sleep with while asking you to keep it hidden from their new partner. They’ll make it seem normal, as if they are only trying to let their new partner down easily because they’ve fallen so deeply in love with the narcissist, that to break it off abruptly would put their new target in the loony bin.
This is so they can keep both of you in the mix and set you up for triangulation.
Knowing about the narcissist’s matrix means you now have to live the truth of narcissism. It means that you are aware they exist and not just a foreign personality you read about.
You’ll read reams of articles on narcissism and watch hours of video looking for a loophole that indicates your partner might be different. That somehow your relationship is unique and there’s a chance for salvation yet. That in spite of your partner meeting all the criteria of being a narcissist, maybe they’re just a wounded soul who needs your undying love.
This is what we all think.
When you finally leave, you’ll miss the matrix. You’ll try everything in your power to go back to it, but it can’t be undone. You’ll toggle between the brainwashing you experienced in the narcissist’s matrix and new, empowering elements of living in your awakened state.
At some point, however, you’ll realize the necessity of staying in your new reality. You’ll begin to comprehend that exiting the narcissist’s matrix is a matter of survival. And only through living in reality will you come to discover that you do have power over your life, after all.
“I’m trying to free your mind, Neo. But I can only show you the door. You’re the one that has to walk through it.” – Morpheus
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