How To Break Up With A Narcissist

Excerpted from The Empath’s Survival Guide: Life Strategies for Sensitive People By Judith Orloff 

In my psychiatric practice, I’ve seen how hard it is for my patients to break up with a partner who’s a narcissist.

Narcissists can make you fall in love with them so hard that it feels like you’re giving up a part of your heart to leave them. And they use every manipulation in the book to get you to stay.

On the surface narcissists can seem charming, intelligent, caring—knowing how to entice and lure their way back into your life. But once they reel you back then they revert to their egotistical selves. Their motto will always be “Me First!” Everything’s all about them. They have a grandiose sense of self-importance and entitlement, crave admiration and attention. They can also be highly intuitive, but use their intuition for self-interest and manipulation.

Narcissists are so dangerous because they lack empathy, have a limited capacity for unconditional love. Sadly, their hearts either haven’t developed or have been shut down due to early psychic trauma, such as being raised by narcissistic parents, a crippling handicap both emotionally and spiritually. (The damage of narcissistic parenting is outstandingly detailed in Alice Miller’s Drama of the Gifted Child). Hard as it may be to comprehend, these people have little insight into their actions, nor do they regret them.

To find out if you’ve been in a relationship with a narcissist, ask yourself the following questions from my book, Emotional Freedom.

 

QUIZ: HAVE I BEEN IN A RELATIONSHIP WITH A NARCISSIST?

  • Does the person act as if life revolves around him?
  • Do I have to compliment him to get his attention or approval?
  • Does he constantly steer the conversation back to himself?
  • Does he downplay my feelings or interests?
  • If I disagree, does he become cold or withholding?
  • If you answer “yes” to one or two questions, it’s likely you’re dealing with a narcissist. Responding “yes” to three or more questions suggests that a narcissist is violating your emotional freedom.

    Narcissists are hard nuts to crack. With these patients, the best I can do is align with their positive aspects and focus on behaviors that they agree aren’t working. Still, even if one wants to change, progress is limited, with meager gains. My professional advice: Don’t fall in love with a narcissist or entertain illusions they’re capable of the give and take necessary for intimacy. In such relationships you’ll always be emotionally alone to some degree. If you have a withholding narcissist spouse, beware of trying to win the nurturing you never got from your parents; it’s not going to happen. Also, don’t expect to have your sensitivity honored. These people sour love with all the hoops you must jump through to please them.

    If you’re trying to break up with a narcissist, use these methods from my emotional freedom book to get your power back.

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    About The Author

    Dr. Judith Orloff
    Judith Orloff MD, an Assistant Clinical Professor of Psychiatry at UCLA, is author of THE EMPATH'S SURVIVAL GUIDE: LIFE STRATEGIES FOR SENSITIVE PEOPLE. She is New York Times bestselling author of Emotional Freedom, The Power of Surrender, Positive Energy, Guide to Intuitive Healing, and Second Sight. Dr. Orloff synthesizes the pearls of traditional medicine with cutting edge knowledge of intuition and energy medicine. To sign up for Dr. Orloff's EMPATH NEWSLETTER and see her workshop schedule visit www.drjudithorloff.com. Also join her empath support community on FACEBOOK for sensitive souls. NOTE: TO SCHEDULE A PRIVATE SESSION WITH Dr. Orloff PLEASE CONTACT HER ASSISTANT RHONDA BRYANT [email protected]

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