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How to Make a Narcissist Miserable: 12 Things They Hate

You probably spend a great deal of time feeling defeated and frustrated by the narcissist in your life. You see how they treat other people (and yourself), and it’s appalling.  You certainly know what you don’t like in your relationship. But have you ever wondered how to make a narcissist miserable or what makes them afraid or triggered?

Just for the record, trying to make a narcissist miserable might have its place for a short period of time, but I don’t recommend focusing on it for too long as this will inevitably have an effect on your mental health and energy levels.

But, if you need a quick fix, let’s get into the top 12 things all narcissists hate. 

How to Make a Narcissist Miserable

1 – Lack Of Acknowledgment

It’s no secret that most narcissists revel in admiration and validation (except for ‘closet narcissists’). They depend on constant approval to maintain their sense of intrinsic worth. To achieve this goal, they absorb (or steal) the energy of other people to feel good about themselves. 

Do you ever wonder why narcissists don’t seem to mind the negative attention? It’s because negative attention also fuels their narcissistic fire. The negativity is still attention, and any form of attention gives them the incentive to keep going. It gives them the motivation to keep proving themselves. 

In fact, they often like negative attention better because if you’re still bothered by their relationship crimes, they can exploit this in order to deepen the trauma bond and keep you hooked and entangled!

Therefore, a lack of acknowledgment is a real threat. To a narcissist, indifference is even more of an issue than hatred. They’d rather you have a negative opinion than have no opinion at all.

Narcissists can’t stand when no one is paying attention to them. They don’t know how to feel important or special if they aren’t the center of the universe or consuming someone’s thoughts.  This is also why the traditional Grey Rock method is often pointless and why complete avoidance is the best route (or extreme modified contact if you share children with them).

2 – When People Speak Factually 

Have you ever paid close attention to how a narcissist speaks? They use excessive, long-winded language charged with grandiose emotion. They skew reality to meet their worldview, and they believe their truth is always the truth.

Additionally, through the use of cognitive empathy, they’ve spent their entire lives  observing the emotional language of other people  and using it to their advantage.  So, when you speak in facts instead of using emotion, they intuitively understand they have less of an upper hand.

Therefore, they hate when someone challenges them with facts instead of emotion. They will usually retaliate with more arguing or hysteria. This childish response simply shows that they feel out-of-control. They attempt to elevate the conversation’s intensity by throwing an emotional temper tantrum.

If anything, this dynamic only highlights the narcissist’s immaturity. Their inability to absorb facts demonstrates their incompetence in approaching most adult interactions. They are not skilled in the language of facts because they are always lying and hiding things, so speaking factually throws them completely off-balance. 


3 – Authority

Narcissists detest authority. That’s because they resent having to answer to anybody but themselves. Any sense of authority threatens their inherent desires for power and control.

It’s not uncommon for narcissists to have issues at work, school, or with the law. Has the narcissist in your life had multiple jobs? Are they frequently getting reprimanded for their behavior?

While narcissists can be intelligent, they often come across as combative and unfit in professional environments. If confronted by their inappropriate behavior, they tend to deny or rationalize their part. 

Of course, it’s no surprise that most authority figures dislike working with narcissists. Supervisors find them unruly and unreasonable. They can’t understand why the person can’t follow basic directions without such volatile reactions.

4 – Being Told No

Of all things a narcissist hates, being told no (and actually following through with it) tops the list. Narcissists are used to manipulating and weaseling their way into getting what they want. 

Often, they’ll pull all the stops to accomplish this task. They’ve spent their whole lives charming people to meet their needs. They never stop to think about how your feelings impact the dynamic. 

That’s why telling them no- and being adamant on your stance- often causes such an angry reaction. A narcissist isn’t just upset about the denial- they’re downright confused by it! 

Narcissists can’t actually fathom why someone would refuse them. Because they lack real empathy, they can’t understand what must be going on in your mind. Moreover, even if they try to comprehend it, they refuse to accept this reality.

5 – Implementing Consequences

Have you ever tried to set a boundary with a narcissist? How well did it go? Most likely, you tried to implement a limit, and they reacted in one of three ways:

  • Dismissing you altogether and gaslighting your feelings
  • Acknowledging their mistake, promising to change, and then doing nothing to change
  • Reacting with intense rage, threats, or even physical violence 

Narcissists can’t accept any real consequences. They can’t see when they’re wrong, and they can’t understand how someone would ever think they’re wrong. And even if the narcissist understood this, they simply wouldn’t care.  As a result, they tend to react disproportionately to boundaries and serious conversations as a means to intimidate you and force you into compliance.

Unfortunately, many people simply give up on trying to implement consequences with narcissists. Because they want to avoid a potential conflict, they surrender and dismiss their feelings. How many times have you avoided setting a real boundary because that’s just how they are?

6 – Losing At Anything

Have you ever observed young children playing a board game? If so, you probably witnessed plenty of cheating behaviors and dramatic reactions to losing. It’s acceptable when the players are three years old, but what happens when you’re referring to full-fledged adults? 

Narcissists can resemble toddlers, in that they tend to be extremely sore losers. They struggle to accept losing, and they also tend to lash out when it happens. A few scenarios may occur:

  • They repeatedly proclaim the person in charge (boss/referee) was incompetent
  • They attempt to defame or humiliate the winner
  • They pretend they didn’t care about winning
  • They insist that they “let the other person” take the spotlight
  • They refuse to accept that they lost and awkwardly act as if they’re the actual winner (you may have experienced this by hearing, after you’ve left them, that they’ve told everyone they’re the one who left you!)

7 – Public Humiliation

Because they are sore losers, narcissists can’t handle real or perceived public humiliation. They just can’t tolerate the threat of failure. To them, public humiliation is the ultimate form of defeat.

We all know that narcissists have incredibly fragile egos. When they believe someone is making fun of them or if they’re not the perceived expert or authority in a public setting, it jolts their existence. As a result, they’ll do anything to protect their fragile ego. Some common responses include:

  • Making violent or emotionally-charged threats
  • Attempting to one-up the audience by turning on them
  • Screaming or yelling
  • Walking away with obvious anger
  • Laughing it off in public only to lash out later on loved ones later 
  • Making up lies about anyone who is a real expert

8 – Expectations of Commitment

Most narcissists are terrible with commitment. Although they believe they deserve all senses of loyalty, they don’t usually provide it themselves. As a result, when they get into relationships, they don’t consider other people’s needs. They’re only accounting for their own emotions, impulses, and desires.

Unfortunately, many adoring partners hold onto wistful hope about their narcissist changing. They listen to how the narcissist praises and adores them. They hold onto fleeting promises that this time will be different.

Yet the narcissist makes all the rules. They decide what they want to do, and they do it when they want to do it. Therefore, they can break and change the rules in ways that suit them. 

9 – Vulnerability And Emotional Expression 

Narcissists often use  cognitive empathy  to feign interest in other people’s emotions. Real, emotional empathy means putting ourselves in someone else’s shoes. We take on the feelings and experiences of the other person.

Cognitive empathy, on the other hand, is far more insidious and manipulative. Think about the money-hungry salesman who preys on your ambivalence about buying a new car. Think about the general contractor who convinces you that you need to upgrade your appliances.

Cognitive empathy means tapping into someone’s deep emotions and feelings. This tactic requires having an initial connection. Narcissists use cognitive empathy to “gain entry” into your vulnerability. They establish this sense of trust and rapport using false kindness and compassion.

At the same time, they loathe vulnerability and emotional expression. They perceive it as a sign of weakness. Therefore, they use it to  take advantage of you  when your defenses are down.


10 – 99% Of Other People
 

How many friends does your narcissist have? Probably very few. Usually, their only friends are other people who validate their narcissism. 

Subsequently, how often do you hear your narcissist complain about other people? More times than you can count, probably! That’s because a single wrongdoing often results in lifetime resentment. One mistake tarnishes an entire reputation. 

Narcissists struggle to get along with anyone who doesn’t fit into their falsified worldview. They can’t stand to be challenged. They can’t tolerate the ideas that other people may know more than them. 

If they’re a cerebral narcissist, they are convinced that they are unique and should only associate with other special or high-status individuals. In fact, when confronted with anything that contradicts their sense of god-like stature, you can bet that their reaction will be explosive and malicious.

Therefore, narcissists can’t tolerate people who actually live in reality. That’s why you rarely see people with strong boundaries tolerating narcissists for very long. They recognize that the narcissist can’t provide mutual respect, connection, or love.

11 – Your Own Clarity

Above anything, the narcissist hates the idea that you might remember life before you met them. This concern is their  greatest fear , and they’ll engage in many manipulative tactics to prevent it from manifesting.

Narcissists use love-bombing to keep you captured and intrigued. They’ll win you over with their charm and wit and cognitive empathy. They’ll make you feel special in ways you’ve never felt before (all through the use of cognitive empathy, of course).

But the narcissist never wants you to think for yourself. If you start doing that, they’ll react. They’ll attempt to break you down and sabotage you. They’ll make you doubt your capabilities and question your motives.

Their goal is to reprogram your mind- and they’ll do whatever they can to maintain their preferred status quo.

12 – When You Change The Status Quo 

Narcissists hate change when it’s out of their control. But when you stay with a narcissist, you remain in a defeating pattern full of resentment and frustration.

You deserve better than riding on their crazy train. You deserve freedom. When you choose yourself, you choose to remove yourself from this abuse. You choose to live your life without needing to walk on eggshells every day.  You deserve to focus on your healing once you understand how to make a narcissist miserable.

If you are trying to leave a toxic relationship, my testament to you is that as horrible and crippling as it feels in the beginning to leave, there is an end to it.  The body and mind have enormous wisdom.  They know how to heal themselves if you create the conditions in which they can do so.  Give them that opportunity by working on yourself – healing your wounds and altering those of your traits that left you vulnerable to narcissistic abuse.

There are so many people just like you who have taken a stand against their abusers.  They’ve gotten a taste of the good life–and that taste of freedom is too sweet to turn back to the lives they had before.

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5 Steps To Ignoring A Narcissist Who Tries To Punish You

Ignoring a narcissist is critical – it is a skill that will save your life. And there is no time that ignoring a narcissist is more important than when a narcissist tries to punish you.

Narcissists love to get your reaction. And as soon as they do, you are handing power away.

This is how narcissists “prosper” – they like to know that they have infiltrated your thoughts, heart, mind and soul to the point where they are everything to you – front and center, sideways, up and down and inside and out.

That is what it feels like when a narcissist gets their tentacles into you … like everything you used to think is tipped upside down and turned on its head.

 

Until we know better we think that combatting a narcissist, when their cruel punishment emerges, can stop the battering – the onslaught of twists, turns, mind-bends and outright abuse.

But it can’t.

In fact, every time we “go in” trying to get some sort of decency, accountability or sanity, things escalate and we end up even more disorientated, broken and traumatised than before.

What is the solution?

It is the VERY thing that is the ONLY solution.

Totally ignoring them, which means granting them no energy, no response and no bite back.

I discovered that ignoring the narcissist was the most difficult when he was trying to punish me.

These were the times when he’d decided I was somehow injuring his False Self and I needed to be throttled back into line.

This could amount to not meeting him at the door to greet him adequately. To punish me, he would abandon me and leave.

And … there were the times when he believed I slighted him, causing him to lash out with verbal abuse, name calling and intensely derogatory statements about my character.

Other times of punishment were when he believed I was involved with other men and would threaten or become physically violent with me.

I could go on and on … as I am sure you also could about the ways the narcissist in your life has punished you.

And for most mere mortals, like me and you, initially it is almost impossible to not react to a narcissist’s cruel and disproportionate behavior, when the punishment CLEARLY does not match the supposed crime.

Especially, if you are like me, a high-powered passionate person who has specific beliefs about life and others and how people should treat each other with integrity.

I used to be one of these people who HATED injustice vehemently. For me to sit back and shut my mouth when something was blatantly “wrong’, unfair” or “ridiculous” was like not brushing my teeth in the morning.

It truly was part of my make-up.

So, as far as the narcissist was concerned, my previous self was the perfect target for narcissistic supply – because all he had to do was do something odd / wrong / unjust / cruel / unfair and I’d be all over it.

Before my intense recovery journey, I just thought I was doing the right thing by confronting him. I didn’t realise the repercussions of my intensely co-dependent (sourcing my life from outside of me by trying to force other people to grant me myself) behavior.

What I was doing was defying all rules of Quantum Law – so within, so without.

This is the absolute nature of this Law: whenever we try to change someone else to grant us inner peace and happiness, we are firmly in Wrong Town … and all we get is MORE inner turmoil and unrest in our attempts.

The other thing that Quantum Law forces us to get (and hopefully we do finally awaken) is that inner peace and happiness is our own foundational responsibility and then and only then other people with healthy resources will follow.

In this article I wish to share with you the five most important understandings and processes to ignore narcissists, especially at the times when they try to hurt you the most.

 

1) Know Ignoring a Narcissist Hurts Them More Than Anything

I have found this key truth is very useful for people, to help them ignore narcissists before going to work on their Inner Game – meaning detoxing their trauma and reprogramming their painful beliefs.

Initially, it is very human that we want to get back at narcissists; we want them to suffer. They have hurt us, and what they have done to us defies our sense of loyalty, love and what we stand for as human beings.

Please know even though I am all for Quantum Recovery where we purposefully evolve ourselves to the stage where we have no need for narcissists to experience anything at all for us to have a truly wonderful, rich and expansive life (true Quantum Cellular Freedom), I deeply acknowledge the stages we go through emotionally.

Revenge and wanting to pay back, for most of us, is initially very real and coursing through our being. As long as we are prepared to work towards our inner recovery as soon as possible, this can be a helpful step to start ignoring a narcissist.

KNOWING nothing hurts a narcissist more than ignoring them.

It renders them insignificant, meaningless and void.

That is the deepest fear of the narcissist – having people turn their back on them and let go, because there is NO greater narcissistic injury. It is literal emotional annihilation.

Please know you have a window of time with your own emotions with this – yes ignore a narcissist because you know it hurts them more than anything, but start your recovery in deep earnest immediately as well – because if you don’t your ego’s delight at ignoring them will be VERY short lived.

The ego never holds energy and peace durably. It needs constant proof and confirmation.

Therefore, without deep healing processes to detoxify yourself from the narcissist, you will want to check up – such as look up social media, or get in contact with people the narcissist knows to see IF your ignoring them has really hurt them.

Your attention will still be on the narcissist, which means that it isn’t going towards your healing and recovery, and you will still be drained of and handing energy away.

This is why it is important to use this knowledge as your kick star ONLY.

 

2) Know That Granting a Narcissist Energy is Handing Them the Bullets to Shoot You With

When we understand the Rules of Engagement with a narcissist, this gives us more reason to ignore them rather than go to war.

And … of course this helps lead us to the space to get onto working on our Inner Healing.

Narcissists are not like normal people in arguments and times of conflict. For most people conflict drains energy from their Inner Being – it is distasteful, painful and exhausting.

Narcissists are the opposite; conflict, drama and trauma energises them.

The narcissist’s TRUE feelings about him or herself are disastrous – hence why a fictitious character was created by him or her to be a buffer between the narcissist and his or her inner wounds.

This entity, known as Ego (False Self), is running the narcissist’s emotions and life and feeds from pain.

In stark contrast, the entity known as the True Self, (which still exists within us, even if not free yet because of internal trauma) feeds off and blossoms from love, authenticity and truth.

Because the narcissist is self-divorced from his or her True Self, the narcissist cannot feel, register or hold good feelings. He or she can only operate within the range of painful feelings. All “good” feelings, for a narcissist are delusional / obsessive and ego driven.

We are no match for a narcissist in a battle, who like a shark in blood infested waters, gets switched on and powered up.

We … instead … are torn to shreds.

It’s your ego that wants to fight on, but our True Self knows that the energy being expended and the brutalisation we suffer is not worth it, and is NOT who you really are.

Your True Self is screaming at you this: Pull away and heal and create yourself as a Being that is impervious to abuse. Don’t try to fight back because you will only feed it, absorb it and become it.

 

3) The Narcissist Has Shown Us What We Need to Heal

If you pull away using the inspiration that ignoring the narcissist hurts them the most, and you have stopped handing energy and power to them, then it’s time to make it ALL ABOUT working on your own Inner Being to heal yourself.

This is when we step into the Quantum Power of ignoring the narcissist. This is a much improved model rather than having to continually having to remind ourselves why we need to stay away.

When we heal the Thriver Way, we stay away … for good.

This is only possible when we start the determined work on our Inner Game – the detoxing of our inner trauma and reprogramming of our painful beliefs.

By doing so, a profound switch comes on … this …

What you are PUNISHING me with is EXACTLY the unhealed parts of me that I need to heal to NOT only ignore you for real, but to free myself from all feelings of enmeshment, love and neediness with you. I know now by doing so, you will become totally irrelevant to me, and I will then transcend into relationships which ARE healthy, whole and real.

This is a massive cause for celebration truly … and I promise you it is the truth. This is the truth that ultimately set me and so many others free.

It’s then that ignoring a narcissist becomes pretty easy … because we have made the journey all about loving and healing ourselves instead of trying to make the narcissist morph into someone who will love and care for us decently.

How it went for me is how it goes for all of us. I clung to the narcissist initially like a woman in a typhoon hanging onto the side of a sinking ship.

I was drowning, yet I thought he was my only option to live.

Why did I do this?

Because all the ways I had felt as a child, and how I had grown up to treat myself … feeling not good enough, feeling loved with conditions, feeling not heard, not able to have my own rights, and not being capable to generate my own life … were all the aspects of myself under serious threat again.

Whilst I had these unhealed wounds, I was holding the messenger of these wounds (him) responsible to fix these wounds.

Why do any of us cling?

Because the unhealed child within us is dictating our emotions and our life.

When I pulled away and healed these original traumas, all of my graduation happened … just as it has for thousands of people already in this Community, and just as it will for you.

It’s a beautiful day when the narcissist tries to trigger you and there is simply NO trauma there for him or her to trigger.

That’s when your response is indifference and you have nil reaction. No charge felt in your body means there is no trauma remaining.

This is the level we are capable of healing to now, and being freed from the narcissist is only a part of it. The real truth is this: we are freeing ourselves from internal trauma which has caused us to hand power away in many areas of our life.

 

4) Life Has Our Back and Will Support Us If We Let It

One of the greatest reasons why we can’t ignore the narcissist is because we think that letting go means we will be unsafe, undefended and throttled by them.

Boy does this one take some work on our Inner Being – BIG time!

I know from my own personal experience, and as a result of helping many people in this Community heal from narcissistic abuse, one of the biggest hooks we have that keeps us going back for more is crisis consciousness.

 It is that terror that things out of our control, especially when they become scary or threatening, are going to get us. That we will be hurt immensely. ripped apart and taken down.

These traumas come from feeling terrified and powerless as children if we were violated, but they are also more than that … they are literal human DNA epigenetic terrors that are wedged in so many human being’s DNA as a part of the inherited human experience.

Look at our human history – it’s brutal. So many of us carry terror, aspects of powerlessness and abuse programs deeply entrenched within us.

A miracle starts to happen when we target that stuff and release it. All of a sudden we KNOW with every cell of our Being that we do have incredible power – dictated through the composition of our Inner Being.

When we are no longer riddled with fear and all of our cells vibrate with the knowing that we are loved and adored beyond measure simply because we exist (which is our organic state when we lose our programs and traumas of fear) then for the first time in our Life we feel SAFE.

And I mean truly safe, and we know that whatever it is that is inauthentic outside of us is not our reality and cannot affect us.

So … I can’t recommend enough how important it is to work on these inner programs to be free of them.

 

5) It’s Only Important What You Think of You

Narcissists get us triggered and enmeshed when we start focusing on all the terrible things they do.

Such as the smear campaigns and abuse by proxy – the fabricating of lies and using methods to discredit us and render us powerless.

When we are shocked, devastated and traumatised by the false allegations and terrible things being said and spread about us, as well as people turning away and against us in droves … then we are in trouble.

We feel like we can’t ignore what is happening to us. We want to defend, have a right of reply and discredit the person who is tearing our reputation to shreds, or maybe attempting to get us prosecuted.

I promise you this one – Step 5 – is incredibly connected to the essential inner work.

One of the biggest hooks that narcissists get us on, is our fear of authority and the terror of being persecuted.

These are two of the human frailties of powerlessness in our DNA caused by the terrible atrocities that have occurred in the human experience, and which have been passed on as trauma epigenetically within families down the line.

This painful belief wedged in our Inner Identity goes like this: If people think I’m bad or that what I have done is wrong, I will be hurt and could even die.

Is it any wonder that we are triggered into white hot terror when we discover what has been said about us, or when legal authorities confront us as a result of the narcissist’s lies?

HOW can we ignore the narcissist when this happens? We can’t.

Logically we can’t. Mere logic, which is only responsible for 5% of our Life, has no power against an almighty triggered subconscious survival program.

There is only one way to truly heal from this – address the subconscious program at its root. Because when we have targeted and released these traumas that are deep within our DNA then we start going free.

 

Then we are not triggered. We know we are not that person that other people believe we are. We no longer fear that people and authorities will turn against us.

Instead, we calmly and clearly show the facts, or we just know that being ourselves is enough, or even doing nothing is okay – regardless of what people think.

Then, what we find is the terror campaigns fall flat. They just don’t get off the ground. We are believed, we are safe.

People who want to join the narcissist can, but we have ourselves and other people in our life who know who we are.

The greatest gift is, unconditional of our outside word, we KNOW who we are and we know we are safe.

Then we discover this: Life follows.

 

Conclusion

After being hooked up with a narcissist watching them, confronting them and having our entire soul and life overtaken by them, letting go and ignoring them will feel totally counter-intuitive at first.

Yet, I promise you, when done in conjunction with healing your Inner Being, detaching and generating your life will be the most natural, healthy thing you have ever done in your life.

This creates a healthy template for you, as to how to live your life in ways that serve you immensely. Such as, making it your mission to control your inner world and THEN seeing your outer world transform.

I can’t tell you what a relief it is to stop trying to control everything outside of us (which is too big and way too impossible) and instead make the change that changes everything … on the inside.

Narcissists are the pinnacle of uncontrollable!! Hence teaching us this self-empowerment lesson.

I’d love to connect to your comments and questions about this topic below!

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Why Narcissists Use Silent Treatment

Narcissistic silent treatment is something that virtually every narcissist delivers skilfully. Ironically it’s the horrible blow that they themselves are terrified of – being rendered invalid, invisible and totally redundant. We all know what it is to ignore or be ignored – we may have snubbed someone at sometime in our life, or we may have been given the “cold shoulder” ourselves. We all clearly know silent treatment means this: “I disapprove of you or something you’ve done”.

However, this cruel action – narcissistic silent treatment – is a lot more impactful than merely being brushed off by someone. I n my recent article regarding the passive-aggressive narcissist  we looked into the ultimate weapon used – narcissistic silent treatment – yet in this article I want to go into this in more detail, to really help you understand this tactic that virtually every narcissist, at some stage, will use.

Narcissists purposefully punish with narcissistic silent treatment; it is used to teach the person it is directed at a lesson. The insane thing about it is, the narcissist may decide to grant no explanation whatsoever for days, weeks, months or even a lifetime. Truly, there are people who experience narcissistic silent treatment who never have any explanation or closure as to why.

In fact, at first, they thought something terrible has happened to the narcissist and that’s why he or she ‘disappeared’. But, usually, this is a pattern and we discover once this happens, it will continue to happen again and again.

And the sad thing is, so many people trapped in narcissistic relationships have tried to do everything they can to prevent the absolute horror of narcissistic silent treatment – being treated as if they no longer exist. They hand over more boundaries, rights and desires and give the narcissist more of what the narcissist wants, hoping this will stop the stonewalling and disappearing acts, but to no avail. These cruel acts continue to happen, for no valid reason.

Be very clear about this – silent treatment is about invaliding your existence, and narcissists can apply this in several different ways.

Please know, if the narcissist is using this weapon against you, and you stick around to receive it – it will keep coming – until the often inevitable ultimate discard.

Narcissistic Silent Treatment After a Breakup

This form of narcissistic silent treatment is a biggie. I have heard so many people in this Community, even after decades with a narcissist and sharing children, when discarded (and usually replaced) being shell-shocked at how the narcissist is capable of shutting them out, and not giving a damn.

They are devastated to experience that the narcissist will not offer any explanation or grant any form of compassion – and is not interested in anything other than forgetting them and getting on with his or her life.  The horror of being discarded like yesterday’s garbage, after years of service and devotion, is unspeakable. 

It’s so sad that many of these discarded people were long ago been trained into accepting a relationship that was all about the narcissist and very little about them. Even so, they feel like they can’t imagine life without the narcissist. Now the narcissist won’t return their calls, won’t deal with them face to face and is leaving everything up to their solicitors. It is like No Contact has been reversed, the narcissist is the one executing it – with unyielding deliberate force.

This continues, unless the new source of supply is not working out, then the narcissist may return as if nothing happened. This is what many long-suffering partners of narcissists have dealt with for years. Affairs, discard, silent treatment, return, false promises … and the cycle inevitably happens all over again, until it finally is the end (which usually comes).

Is it guilt causing the narcissist to cut themselves off from their previous spouse and sometimes even their family? No, the narcissist will have their self-serving justifications for doing what he or she has done, and the ex-spouse has already been degraded and reduced in value in the narcissist’s psyche to someone who needs to be dispensed of, totally confirming the narcissist’s version of things.

The pulling away and not returning any contact is something narcissists can do with any relationships. What is so painful, when the narcissist walks away and ignores you without a backward glance, is the suddenness, severity and finality that it feels like. Possibly, seemingly moments before, you were being told you were desired and valued, and then you are meaningless and not wanted.  Narcissists switch from adoring you to abhorring you on a dime.

Over the last decade I have heard so many versions of the capacity of narcissistic silent treatment – ranging from long-term marriages with narcissists all the way to brief flings where narcissists told people incredible stories such as, they are the narcissists soul mate, and they are destined life partners, only to have the narcissist then vanish into thin air, totally uncontactable – leaving them devastated, shattered and reeling.

If this has happened to you, you may obsess about, “Didn’t s/he feel that intense connection, that I did, too?” The truth was – no, you were simply being used to gratify the narcissist’s False Self in the time you spent together.

Everyday Narcissistic Silent Treatment

When the narcissist is suffering some form of narcissistic injury he or she may decide to punish you with narcissistic silent treatment.

This can be a cruel game, like a cat tormenting a mouse, because you will ask the narcissist what is wrong, and maybe even enquire if have you done something to hurt them. You may get cryptic short answers or simply more of being ignored. Either way, the narcissist is screwing with your noodle, because there is no real explanation and you have no idea what is going on.

You are likely to react because this triggers deep insecurities within you. If you don’t and you remain calm the narcissist will simply up the ante and make sure they keep ignoring you until you do react.

Once you react, you have entered the ring where the narcissist has you pinned in the corner. Now he or she can twist things, blame you, or leave, adding the cruelty of abandonment on top of narcissistic silent treatment. Of course, this is likely to prompt you to get upset. Now the narcissist has you exactly where he or she wants you – emotionally incapacitated, deranged and hooked, and fully handing attention over to them.

Things happen like the narcissist switches their phone off, and you leave numerous missed calls, which the narcissist later showcases to everyone convincing people that you are abusive, controlling and crazy. This, of course, gleans tons of narcissistic supply from the narcissist’s audience in the process.

I experienced this in my narcissistic relationship, as I know many of you have. After getting hooked in and further abused (including smeared to all and sundry) so many times, I sometimes succeeded in detaching. The narcissistic silent treatment would go on for days on end, and even though I was feeling so low, worthless and intensely insecure and panicked I would do everything I could not to bite and get involved.

So he changed tactics. After realising I wouldn’t hook in,  he would erupt and attack me for ignoring him  and not caring about him and clearly, I must be having an affair because I wasn’t connecting with him. It didn’t matter how many times I told him he started it – he again, with precise narcissistic expertise, would have me so confused and bamboozled I had no idea what had really happened.

The truths were, in regard to his narcissistic silent treatment at home, I was damned if I went in to try to pull him out of it, and I was damned if I didn’t.

Silent Treatment When You Need Support

I really do believe that this version of narcissistic silent treatment is one of the cruellest and most heartbreaking forms imaginable. I remember, when one of my dearly beloved cats Ruby was run over and killed that I was beyond devastated. (As you can imagine being the cat lover I am.) I had family and friends grant me love and support, yet the narcissist went as cold as ice and would not speak to me.

He had done this before, completely pulling away from me and refusing to acknowledge I existed when something in my life was challenging, painful or even devastating – in short when I needed him the most. I felt beyond abandoned by him and when I tried to confront him about it he left and deserted me even more.

Finally, he broke his silence by attacking me mercilessly how everyone else that I had connected to for comfort was more important than him, and how disgusting I was to use the death of my cat to get sympathy from others in this way (of course a narcissistic projection).

I was devastated, I was guttered. I remembered lying on my back lawn as I had many times, sobbing all night.

Now that I understand how narcissists operate, I know this total emotional abandonment and betrayal came about because of his narcissistic rage when I was unavailable to provide him with narcissistic supply, and when the spotlight was well and truly off him.

I know so many of you have suffered at a narcissist’s hands terribly when in need, and they have completely abandoned and ignored you and possibly even cut off all contact. I can’t even begin to list the stories I have heard in this last decade when people have had serious things happen such as a death of a family member, or dreadful illness or injuries and been completely deserted by narcissists.

If you become “high maintenance” (need support) a narcissist is likely to start looking for a fresher source of narcissistic supply who will feed their False Self. A perfect example is my girlfriend’s girlfriend who was dying in palliative care whilst her narcissistic husband was rustling up dates on dating sites.

He couldn’t even wait until she had passed. I know we can’t even begin to stomach how unthinkable this is – but to him, it was totally justifiable.

Let’s talk more about how narcissists use the weapon – silent treatment, to get fresh sources of supply.

 

Using Silent Treatment to Generate Fresh Narcissistic Supply

I connected to a lady, very recently, whose narcissistic husband would go quiet and withdraw and then he would disappear, without a word. Surely this qualifies as “narcissistic silent treatment”? I think it does, as well as downright total abandonment. He would be uncontactable at these times for weeks or months on end.

Of course, she discovered he was spending time with other women during these absences.

Clearly, when narcissists go missing in action (MIA) this is when they are usually up to no good. It is such a relief for narcissists to escape the confinement of being “an average human” which is repugnant to their False Self. Narcissists crave the extra curriculum activates that feed their need for drama, significance, fresh supply and excitement.

Narcissists need narcissistic supply like ice addicts need ice. If a narcissist has pulled away to ignore you, there is every chance he or she is seeking new supply. I truly can’t think of one example of someone telling me about the silent treatment and cruel desertions they are suffering where this wasn’t eventually the discovered truth.

However, (as I mentioned earlier in this article) if things aren’t going swimmingly with the new sources of supply, the narcissist may return like a homing pigeon. Then he or she breaks their silence, starts communicating, with very little if any explanation and expects to pick up exactly where everything was left off.

The person who has been suffering the incredible trauma of narcissistic silent treatment will usually shut up and put up and reconnect just to try to get some relief from the intense trauma they are feeling. In fact, they may feel powerless not to, and the cycle mercilessly continues stripping their self-worth more and more. Many people have conceded that abuse, in the form of some sort of response, was preferable to being iced out and treated like “something worthless”.

 And so it happens, the healthy expectations we have for a relationship get whittled away to nothing other than pure trauma bonding , where any crumb granted is a massive high – a relief that we get addicted too and hooked on – regardless of how much we are abused. When indecent behaviour becomes our normal, narcissists simply hurt us even more.

The lady that I was in communication with, stated that she tried to offer him more of herself when he returned after his affairs so he wouldn’t leave again. Ultimately it happened – he left her for good for another woman that he had been spending time with, and the silent treatment this time became a permanent silence. By the time that happened she felt like she was plunged into a deep abyss. The truth was her self-worth had been shattered long ago.

 

Other Ways The Relationship May Reunite After Silent Treatment

Many people when receiving the narcissist silent treatment, panic as their unhealed terrors of abandonment surface at full strength. At times, when I failed at disconnecting, I was one of these people. I would track him down and beg him to reconnect. I was also apt to give in to his demands and have no choice other than to take full responsibility for whatever I had supposedly done to him – in order for me to retain him in my life.

Narcissists will use the silent treatment as a powerful method to get the message across if you are prone to react how I used to. It is an effective way of getting us to hand over boundaries and gain control.

Interestingly when I gained strength and the silent treatment didn’t work on me, and I started to feel surer inside about moving on,  that is when he would hoover me and draw me back into the web . And of course nothing was resolved, the cycles of abuse were forever cycling and returning.  My unhealed traumas that were keeping me stuck in the game were playing out continuously – and I know it could well be the same for you.

That was until I went No Contact for good and finally healed what I needed to. People have asked me, “But isn’t me going no contact doing ‘The Silent Treatment?’”

Please know No Contact is a healthy statement that is necessary to save our life and soul and grants us enough space to get our real inner healing done.

This is not some purposeful tactic to degrade, control and punish someone – it is a definitive statement of I love myself enough to say “no more” and finally heal the reasons within which keeps us doing this deadly dance with narcissists.

 

The Ultimate Discard of Your Worth

What is narcissistic silent treatment REALLY about? Narcissistic silent treatment carries THIS “message” to its victim …

You are not worth anything in my life. You are not even worthy of one scrap of my attention.

The chilling truth is, apart from the ongoing cycles of narcissistic silent treatment, it can be used as a permanent axing of you.

When a narcissist has decided you have got too close – you know what is under the mask and they could possibly be exposed, or if they have drained you of all that you could possibly give, or you no longer supply the stuff that makes their life interesting and exciting enough, or if better narcissistic supply appears, or if you were only ever used as a tool to momentarily freed the ego or punish on a current partner  … or for whatever reason they have decided you don’t fit in to their agenda anymore – then you will be sacked from their life.

Permanent narcissistic silent treatment has happened for this reason – the narcissist has simply changed movie sets. The things and people who are no longer relevant to the present grandiose, fictitious, pathological needs of the False Self, are deemed redundant and discarded accordingly.

 

How To Heal For Real

There is only one way to heal from this – use space and silence from the narcissist to your advantage. And, there is only one truth to this – you are going to have to detach, pull away and heal in order to escape this life which is destroying your life force and not allowing you to be able to live your true joy, love and unique contributions as your True Self.

There is no easy way to go No Contact with a narcissist. There is no easy way to go alone and feel like you would in a normal relationship breakdown – that it is sad but okay to end it.

With narcissistic abuse you have suffered severe soul violation – you feel depressed, emotionally and mentally fractured, confused, unworthy, needy and constantly triggered. None of this eases and the narcissist is absolutely unavailable, unwilling and incapable of taking your pain away – there is no resolution there.

It’s time when we “get it” that it’s time, to take any opportunity to do the most important work of our life, which is to disconnect from the narcissist, withdraw all of our attention from them, turn inwards to ourselves and find and heal the broken parts of ourselves that the narcissist is reflecting back at us with his or her traumatising behaviour.

These are all the parts of us that feel unlovable and not enough, and that we only have worth if someone else is loving us, rather than knowing we have enough worth to love ourselves and leave if they don’t.

Be prepared, after the silent treatment, that if you stay away and do take this very important work that the narcissist is then likely to hoover you.

They feel the disconnect, they know when you are getting off the narcissistic supply snack list and they may well try to put you back in there. Resist that too – keep going – because if you capitulate you will again fall into the cycle of violence – which narcissistic silent treatment totally is – and the cycles intensify and get worse and worse.

Now the narcissist will make sure he or she has you where they want you – because you will be mercilessly punished for nearly getting away.

If this article resonates with you and you know its time to stop the madness and torture and heal yourself beyond this. Then I’d love you to join me for a free 16-day recover course, which includes 2 comprehensive eBooks, a 3-hour healing workshop with me and lots more.

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