Love - it's magical until you fall head-over-heels for a narcissist. If you're an empath, escaping this toxic tango can feel like an uphill battle. But don't worry, we've got your back.
Finding love is like diving into the ocean - beautiful, but unpredictable. The waters can be calm and serene one minute, and a tempest the next. It's even trickier when you're dealing with a narcissist, a master of charm who can reel you in before you even know it. But don't fret, we've got some love lifesavers to help you navigate these choppy waters.
How to Spot a Narcissist
When you meet a narcissist, the signs aren’t always easy to spot. Narcissists are experienced people pleasers. That means they know how to exhibit qualities you want to see to draw you in. Empaths are especially vulnerable.
While all narcissists share certain traits, such as a lack of empathy and a need for admiration, not all narcissists are alike. Some may be overtly manipulative and abusive, while others might hide their narcissism behind a charming and engaging façade. Understanding the spectrum of narcissism can help you better recognize and deal with narcissists in your life.
What are the Warning Signs of a Narcissist?
Now, how do you know you're dancing with a narcissist? Not all narcissists strut around with a 'look at me' sign. Some are more subtle, hiding behind a cloak of charm, or even what can appear to be self-deprecation. But there are signs – call them yellow flags or even relationship red flags, that can clue you in.
- They practice love-bombing
- They say "I love you," too quickly.
- They are incredibly needy and cannot stand when you have plans without them.
- They have a sense of entitlement from which they base their actions.
- They project their feelings onto others.
- They talk about themselves way too much.
- When they talk about past relationships, they cast themselves in the role of victim and seek your sympathy.
- They seem bored when you tell them about your day or express your emotions.
- They tend to lack strong, meaningful friendships in their lives.
- They make fun of you and put you down (unsupportive of your goals, appearance, etc.)
- They are indecisive about making your relationship official.
- They don't apologize for anything they do.
So, what do you do when you see these signs? Stay tuned, we're getting there.
Why Do People Fall for Narcissists?
Narcissists tend to put on a facade at the beginning of a relationship. Falling for a narcissist often feels like a whirlwind romance. They're charming, attentive, and seem to know exactly what to say to sweep you off your feet. But once the honeymoon phase ends, the mask slips, and you start to see their true colors.
Over time, your narcissistic partner will lower their kind persona in sudden outbursts or mood swings, which might concern you, but by this point, you have only known the good side of them. So, you stick it out, assuming your partner is stressed out, or upset for a valid reason.
Psychology Behind the Narcissist and Empath Attraction
Ever wonder why empaths and narcissists seem to find each other so easily? Empaths are natural givers, full of compassion and understanding. Narcissists, on the other hand, love to take – they crave attention and admiration. So, the empath's giving nature meets the narcissist's needs perfectly, and the narcissist gives the empath a project – a troubled soul to heal.
As an empath, accustomed to sensing the inner struggles of others, you’re more likely to excuse bad behavior. You begin to see the vulnerable person behind the narcissist’s façade, and your compassion and desire to help lead you down a path of codependency. It may seem like pouring more love and loyalty into the relationship might heal their brokenness, but that isn’t actually true. No one can heal another person’s trauma and sticking it out with a narcissist does not ever stop the narcissism.
A Toxic Relationship Combination
Relationships between empaths and narcissists often last for a very long time. These relationships are toxic and unhealthy. They keep partners locked in a cycle of emotional pain and trauma.
A trauma bond is when the empath in the relationship feels a sense of closeness to the narcissist, due to the hardships their relationship has been through (usually because of the narcissist). Throughout the build-up to a trauma bond, the narcissist tends to point out your flaws, making you focus on your wrongdoing rather than their own. Thus, the trauma bond is born, and you become caught between wanting to leave them, wanting to heal them, and being ashamed of your flaws.
The narcissist won’t end the relationship - as they are at an advantage. The empath doesn’t want to hurt the other person and stays, hoping that the other person will change. In their heart, they know that the narcissist “doesn’t really mean that” or “nobody understands them like I do.” They give their partner an out, never holding them accountable for their actions.
How Narcissism Affects You
Because they create inflated images of themselves, narcissists often do the same when they meet new people. At first, a narcissist might put you on a pedestal, viewing you in an ideal way. Once your relationship deepens and your natural, human traits and quirks begin to emerge, a narcissist will become disillusioned. Even though you’ve been forthcoming with the real you, it will no longer be enough to please them. And if you begin to see through their façade and challenge them on their behavior, game over.
You’ll soon realize that they’re constantly looking for the next best thing -- another opportunity or relationship where they can bask in all the good feelings that a new love offers. If you’re looking for some kind of assurance, you’re bound to feel increasingly insecure, a feeling that narcissists simply can’t understand.
Building Boundaries: Empaths' Shield Against Narcissists
Alright, empaths, let's talk defense strategies. If there's one skill to master, it's this – setting boundaries. This is your shield against the energy vampires that narcissists can be. Learn to say "no" without a twinge of guilt, take out some 'me time' every day, and use mindfulness to keep yourself grounded.
No matter what kind of relationship you have with a narcissist, understand that the two of you will never achieve true intimacy. While there’s nothing wrong with keeping a narcissist in your life, accept that he or she is not truly capable of owning their own feelings or hearing yours. By maintaining an appropriate level of distance and changing your expectations you may be able to keep a narcissist in your life. But be prepared to take a hard look at your situation and cut the cord with a toxic partner.
“If the signs are there, the awful mixed with the wonderful, it's very damaging to your own spirit and ability to love yourself. It's crucial you flee no matter how much he or she begs you to stay, even if you must go to a friend’s apartment, a church, or another institution for sanctuary, the blessing is in leaving and being able to find a true soul mate… one who won't damage your soul,” Psychic MacKenzie advises. “Your blessing will come by loving yourself and doing the right thing. Your self-love will grow by knowing how smart you've been to leave such a horrid situation.”
Bouncing Back after a Narcissist
If you're untying yourself from a narcissist, remember, it's okay to take time to heal. You didn't stumble into their trap because you were naive – narcissists are pros at their game. Focus on self-care, consider therapy, and lean on your support system.
Speaking of therapy, it can be a lifesaver when you're breaking free from a narcissist. Look for a therapist who knows their stuff when it comes to narcissistic abuse. And don't forget about support groups – they're a great place to find people who really get what you're going through.
If you're having trouble freeing yourself from a narcissist, need assistance in figuring out a new living situation or other details, or even help understanding how to find more self-love for yourself so you can lead a happy life, connect with your favorite psychic today.
Love can be a rollercoaster ride with highs and lows, but remember, there's a difference between passionate love and abusive behavior. Don't let your compassionate heart trick you into believing you can heal a narcissist's wounds. The right person will cherish your love, returning it tenfold, creating a harmonious rhythm instead of a one-sided dance.
So, remember empaths, you're stronger than you think. And with the right tools, you can navigate the world of love, even when a narcissist crosses your path.