A relationship with a narcissist is never an easy one. It is painful, overwhelming, and suffocating. Until one day you finally make a decision to leave the narcissist.
Even though all breakups are hard, this one is definitely the hardest. Because it is a rollercoaster of emotions when one second you are up and high and the next you are down and low.
Here are 8 stages that you will have to go through when you decide to break up with a narcissist.
When you are in a relationship with a narcissist you are in a habit of constantly overthinking and obsessing about everything. You always try to figure out their character and behavior and make sense of all the bullsh*t they throw at you. So, this habit will continue to go on for some time after the breakup.
Next time when you start thinking and obsessing about them, try to remind yourself that you are no longer connected with them and you are no longer concerned about them. You don’t want them in your life. Repeat this until you believe it.
You’ve been rationalizing during the whole relationship with the narcissist. You were always finding ways to excuse and justify their behavior so that you can continue with the relationship because leaving was too painful for you.
Go into no contact. Don’t talk to them. Don’t call them. Don’t text them. Don’t answer their calls. This is a very important step to remove yourself from them and start healing.
3. FEELING ANXIOUS
This is yet another familiar feeling to you that you experienced during the relationship and that you will most probably experience still after the breakup. You were living on the edge for a long time that your nervous system is still accustomed to fire along with those lines.
Practice taking deep and slow breaths, dancing, yoga, meditation, swimming, or any other activity that will help you release the stress.
4. FEELING ‘BLAH’
A relationship with a narcissist is always about power – they always have it, and you don’t. Nothing ever feels normal when you are around them. You are constantly experiencing different kinds of emotions. So, when you break up – you can be feeling a little “meh” like nothing is really happening around you.
Try undertaking new hobbies. Go meet some friends. When you are at home try meditating and look inside yourself for emotional fulfillment.
When you finally realize that your ex was a narcissist and that you were out of your mind for staying in that kind of toxic and unhealthy relationship, you’ll probably feel ashamed of your naivety, stupidity, and gullibility.
Don’t give yourself a hard time. You are only human. Forgive yourself and start gaining your confidence back.
6. SELF – DOUBT
Since the main strategy of the narcissist is to bring others down to feel powerful and in control – you may have suffered from low self-esteem and self-doubting. They wanted you to doubt yourself. So, after the relationship has ended, it is normal to still experience some of those feelings.
If you feel like you can’t control your feelings of self-doubt, best is to ask for help from a therapist. Join self-help groups, read books, do everything you can to gain your self-confidence back.
Most narcissists, as soon as one relationship ends, are quick to get into a new one because they are hungry for attention and appreciation. This may incite feelings of jealousy into you.
So, whenever you start feeling jealous, remind yourself that the person they’ve replaced you for is only there to supply their needs. The narcissist is unable to develop deep feelings of love about anyone. So, their relationship with that poor woman has a short shelf life.
It is normal for you to experience a tremendous amount of grief and pain. But, know that your aching heart will eventually stop hurting. You just need to give yourself time and patience to heal.
And in order to do that, you must put an end to all communication with him. There is no other way.
Image: Sabrina Guthier