Narcissism and relationships
Hi! I have been told that I am a narcissist by a large group of people, although I have not confirmed the diagnosis yet. I really want to know if I am a narcissist or not because if I am, I want to seek treatment for it so that my behavior and actions won't hurt the people I love and care about anymore. (mainly my husband) The thought of me hurting other people not only makes me sad for them, but it also creates a lot of feelings of guilt and shame. This brings me to my next question; if I am in fact a narcissist, would it be more beneficial for my loved ones if I distance myself from them while I seek treatment, or would it be okay for me to be with them still? I don't want to distance myself from them because I want to be away from them or to hurt them, I would only want to distance myself from them if I know that by doing so it will benefit them more. Thank you for your input, I appreciate it a lot!
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Good morning, @heidikcamara1203191 Youch! That comment had to hurt and obviously took you by surprise. It’s always a shock when we are brought to a new level of self awareness. I think at some point in our lives, everyone has had a reality slap in the face. I had mine when it was brought to my attention that I was a Control Freak! Me? It wasn’t until I really started paying attention as to how other people were perceiving my well-meant intentions of having a project be perfect. An example would be a simple household chore I’d ask my husband or daughter to do, but then would take over because I was frustrated it wasn’t being done the way I expected. I’ve since learned, (30+ years ago) it doesn’t always have to be my way! Relinquishing that control didn’t come overnight. But now, pfft, that’s no longer the way I roll. No longer a control freak. 🙂
Change takes a lot of self awareness and sometimes a real shift in the way we think. It won’t come overnight but in time, you can change thought patterns to where it’s less ‘me’ focused and more on the needs and feelings of others.
I found an online test from Psyche Central where you can do a little self assessment to see if you have narcissistic tendencies. It might give you some insight into your personality and help open your eyes to a character flaw that may need a little tweaking.
A true narcissist wouldn’t even bother wanting to change, so don’t write yourself off for what ‘a group’ of people said about you. I think it’s admirable for you to want to make improvements but it certainly doesn’t require you to be removed from the people you love while you try to move your mind away from the behavior that prompted that comment.
What was happening at the time of the comment?
I apologize, but I did respond to this and it would not allow me to send it. But now I have to go to an appointment, so I'll have to respond to it again later. I'm sorry!
No worries and no need to apologize. This is a stress-free zone. 😊
I’m not sure why your previous reply couldn’t be sent but hopefully the second attempt will be a winner. Was it lengthy?
I'm married to the ultimate narcissist. It is killing me…the control , paranoid accusations of what or where I went, can't talk on my cell or text , she will physically fight me to get my phone.
The abuse is horrendous. It's killing me physically. I've been diagnosed with crohns, the stress from her constant fights, yelling , anger, mental, physical abuse, are making me so sick I can't eat and am in stomach pain all the time. In the past 2 mos….bc the abuse will get worse as time goes on, I have lost 30lbs.
Narcissistic people love empathy as their victims…they can manipulate them easier. Empathy will put up with them longer, despite how much pain they cause, bc we are willing to give them " one more chance..bc they will change "… but they don't….and the cycle repeats.
The biggest, I mean BIGGEST, part of Narcissistic people is that they will never take responsibility for their actions….they will never give a true apology. Even though it's so clear how they abuse you , they will turn it around and put it on you.
Narcs. Do what's called " gaslighting "…. this is the most lasting and dangerous aspect of their behavior…minus the physical abuse which is evident.
Gaslighting will leave their victims mentally screwed up…give them ptsd, doubt their sanity , self worth, identity. This happens through a form of brainwashing…where the narc. Constantly over time, degrades, plays mental games, talks their victims into believing they are insane, mental manipulation , psychological abuse ,emotional abuse , tells them who and what they are, convinces them that they are useless and unworthy.
It's messing me up…all this…BIG BIG TIME!!!!!
When I stabilize, the VA is sending me through a PTSD program bc of all the mental damage. I feel like I'm being tortured!! I think of suicide at times…and cry endlessly that im going to die.
NO COMPASSION WHATSOEVER…THIS IS THE NARCISSISTIC….
2 most ago I tore my hamstring tendon and couldn't walk or even wipe my butt…..I was confined to the couch…and in the most pain ever. She tells me daily " get off ur fat lazy a_ s and mow the lawn..you useless piece of s_ it.
Then the argument and yelling….classic.
My physical health is in great danger….I have a scope in 2 weeks to check my colon and stomach….bc of all the above. I have to take meds when she yells cuz it causes stomach spasms. I get migraine attacks….
Funny…im so sick I can't eat…and I always hear " what's for dinner…am I supposed to go without it again??"
The state police have been here 8x. Last time, 4 weeks ago , the neighbors called bc they heard me screaming near the window when she had me in a bear hug twisting me and stuff trying to get my cell that I held on behind my back. She knew about my injury and what pain she was causing.
She received charges in the mail from the magistrate bc the police filed abuse charges against her. She denies it ever happened and will fight me in court,…but threatened me to lie when I told the police that night about her abuse.
I want to fight her in court…but this will put my life in danger , as she will be outraged and hurt me.
ANGER..ANGER….ANOTHER NARCISSISTIC TRAIT!!!!
I filed, but she refuses to get a job and until then, I'm stuck with her in the house I owned for 11yrs b4 she showed up…which of course she now refers to being " her house"
Sometimes I just want to lay into her and not stop…but WHO GOES TO JAIL WHEN THEY FIGHT BACK IS THE ABUSE VICTIM…NOT THE AGGRESSOR.
I Receive $ for injuries from the military…..she thinks it's hers and I owe her….even though I pay all the bills here.
ANOTHER narcissist TRAIT….THEY WILL TAKE ADVANTAGE OF YOU FINANCIALLY. AND BOY , DOES SHE DO THAT!!!!
I EARNED MY INCOME THROUGH MY SACRIFICE OF MY LIFE AND CAREER….AND ITS BEING USED TO SUPPORT HER AND HER ALCOHOL HABIT!!!!!!!!!!!!
and of course…another Narcissistic trait….TRAIT…..
THEY BELIEVE THEY ARE ENTITLED!!!!
I hope you understand more now what a narcissist is and behaves like…if you have more questions…there is a site called " insight timer" that is free and ad free…it has everything u can think of to help ur mind…but also , many lectures about Narcissistic people. I use it daily, and the music on it to fall asleep at bedtime. Please try it…I would not steer you in the wrong direction.
Be well….and most of all….
PLEASE DO NOT LET OTHER PEOPLE TELL YOU WHO YOU ARE…..SUGGESTIONS ARE OK…BUT NEED TO BE LEFT AS THAT…NO ACCUSATIONS OR LABELING.
PEACE TO YOU…WE ALL NEED IT!!!!!
I’m glad you have such a strong understanding of narcissism! With time the clarity solidifies that you are not culpable anything but staying too long. Glad you’re seeking medical help and I hope you seek out therapy as well. You deserve it.
My husband has passed away, but he was a narcissist and just a year before he passed ( cancer ) he was finally getting therapy and attended a John Gottman marriage retreat with me. The changes were happening and that gave me hope – and that hope had drawn me support him, hence – at that point – I was pleased to have him home … because he cared enough to try. For your situation – just ask them whether you should stay or go as you seek treatment… that shows them love and respect – which is what they crave from you.
Thank you for the encouragement. Initiating this divorce was extremely difficult.
You're right..I did stay too long….way too long.
You can't help someone who doesn't want to be helped..It is the golden rule of empaths But….I tried over and over to help change someone I love. I FELT her pain when I looked at her eyes….happy people don't hurt other people.
I cry as I type this….for her..not me.
This is what kept me stuck….weighing the good side of her vs. The abuse she was doing…trying to understand how the beautiful person I married could be capable of hurting me so bad.
Thank you. Audrey
They are most likely a good person trapped in narcissism. I stayed for years with this justification process in my head. But as narcissists rarely change – all I was doing is spending my life at the mercy of their moods and impulses. I was a lucky one whose spouse was able to get some relief from his Narcissism with counseling …. But I had to leave ( for me ) before he cared enough to take care of himself. And who knows if he ever would have got to that point if he wasn’t diagnosed with cancer. And the grief process of dealing with the death of a narcissistic spouse – eee gads ! They are gone and you still question it all in some weird way. Once you get some space clarity will come and you are going to be so proud of yourself to have left her and created a space for you to enjoy your life !!!! I know I am proud. And the tears you shed ? You can’t imagine how someone you live would treat you this way ? It’s because you would NEVER treat someone you loved that way. You have empathy and the ability to live a full life. She doesn’t have that, will most likely never have that. Doesn’t make her a bad person , but I love that you live yourself enough to know you DESERVE MORE ! respect, honesty, trust…. And this is just the tip of the iceberg. You’ve got this ! With your empathy and your knowing when you have to take care of yourself ( even if that knowledge came slowly ) …. The world is your oyster. Enjoy. You deserve it. Try not to spend any time regretting that you tried to fit a square peg in a round hole – but be thankful that you now realize that will never work no matter how hard you try or how much you love. Lesson learned. Now get back into life … I’m cheering for you !
And I suspect all that you wish for her ( to be free of her narcissistic traits) isn’t even in her radar. It would be like me being sad for a bird to have to eat squirming worms when that’s all they know and that’s how they are wired… offering a bird a cooked filet goes no where. And for me to feel bad for them when it is what they know … probably a bit of wasted ( though kind ) energy. But I get it. I really do. For some reason ( narcissism) they won’t ever really feel all that life has to offer and are unaware of the wake of frustration and hurt they leave in their path. But how nice for you to stop fixing filets for the bird and how nice for you to no longer being knocked over by that endless wake.
You're very very smart and insightful.! Just the way you express yourself and how you shine such a light on reality, instead of " the dream" captures my attention to your words, as I've never listened so fulfilly intent to someone who really knows the " truth of lies".
To hear lectures and read books on narcissistic behavior is educational…but to someone who's lived with it and knows how it feels…..you get advice you sense is heartfelt…for we share a bond as being " those affected by a deep destructive entity"….. with the teacher being one who survived.
I thank you so much for your writings and hope to hear more from you …as I share my struggles to break free…and seek assistance along the way to beat the hardest thing so far to come to my life.
Bless You…and I'm grateful that you made it!…and are part of this world. ; )