Like the PTSD (Post Traumatic Stress Disorder), PNSD is a disorder which happens after a person has been involved (or perhaps even lived) with a narcissist.
Narcissists are extremely dangerous, manipulative, and abusive people. They are manipulating others to get what they want. They lie, abuse, and gaslight other people for their own selfish purposes. They are focused only on achieving their goals, not caring about whether they’ll hurt someone in the process.
After you have been dealing with a narcissist, you can experience some trauma that may be hard to heal. Here are 3 signs that reveal that you are suffering from a Post Narcissist Stress Disorder.
1. You are experiencing flashbacks.
The person suffering from a PNSD may have flashbacks from time to time of the period when they were with the narcissist and what they’ve gone through. And the past emotions and hurt can also arise again within them during and after the flashbacks.
If you too are relieving those situations and emotions from the time you were dealing with the narcissist, and you have a difficult time opening up to people because the trauma from the narcissist still haunts you – then you are suffering from PNSD.
This condition may even lead to paranoia, where you are constantly on the defense fearing that everyone has ulterior motives and will try to take advantage of you.
2. You are avoiding things and people.
A person who is suffering from PNSD tends to avoid doing many things, people, places, activities, things, and emotions.
If you’ve survived the narcissist, then you are probably avoiding anything that reminds you of them and of that difficult and painful time. You might be also closed off when it comes to your emotions because you learned that the only way of surviving the narcissist was to become emotionally detached.
3. You have difficulties returning to normal life.
One of the biggest symptoms of suffering from PNSD is that it is very difficult for the victim to return back to normal life. The person who had a narcissist in their life is prone to experience any hardships from panic attacks to depression, to paranoia. And that’s why it is hard for them to get their life back to normal.
If you are also experiencing this, then you are probably suffering from PNSD. However, there is good news. According to Mayo Clinic, “people who go through traumatic events may have temporary difficulty adjusting and coping, but with time and good self-care, they usually get better.”
How can you help yourself?
Listen to your inner voice. Try to express clearly and say aloud what you are feeling and why you are feeling this way. Be as blunt and honest as you can. By being sincere with yourself and identifying and validating your emotions – you can overcome them more quickly. Awareness is the first step towards healing.
Stay strong and know that you are not alone. Many people have been involved with a narcissist, including myself. And they’ve survived. I survived. And so will you.
Image source: Víctor Candia
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