Like many people who’ve endured Narcissistic and emotional abuse, you probably didn’t realize what was happening to you until you reached a point of near insanity and began searching desperately for reasons why your fairytale romance took a grievous turn for the worse.
Further, the person you love has made you feel you can’t do anything right. The salvation of the relationship always lies on the distant horizon and is entirely dependent upon your changing something about yourself– which is impossible to do (in spite of frantic efforts on your part) – because your self-absorbed mate constantly changes the goal posts.
While these shady behaviors on your partner’s part are indicators of having a destructive personality disorder, there are other very strong signs that your partner may be a Narcissist, which have more to do with how their behavior affects you. If the following signs describe your life, it’s likely that your partner is a Narcissist, which means your relationship problems are undeniably not your fault.
1) You almost always feel alone.
Down to the core of your soul. While your partner may be living with you, eating meals at your table, and sleeping beside you in bed, you’ve never felt such stark loneliness. You often find yourself curled in the fetal position, envisioning someone coming to put their arms around you to help relieve your feelings of isolation.
The reason you feel this way is because you’re living with a mirage of the person you love. That person doesn’t exist and, meanwhile, you are being abandoned in every way possible. According to Susan Anderson, author of The Journey from Abandonment to Healing,
Abandonment has its own kind of grief – a powerful grief universal to human beings. The grief can be acute – as when we go through the ending of a relationship, or chronic – as when we feel the impact of earlier losses and disconnection. Abandonment’s wound lies deep and invisible. It tugs and pulls, making it hard to let go, always acting beneath the surface, spilling primal fear into moments of disconnection, disappointment, and loss, generating feelings of insecurity and self-doubt that persist into future relationships. Unresolved abandonment is a primary source of self-sabotage.
If you feel your partner simply “puts up” with you, only coming around to keep you strung along, it’s because you serve a purpose. If communicating with your partner leaves you feeling unheard, unstable, and frustrated, it’s because they don’t care about you, much less what you have to say. A person who loves you would want to spend time with you, know all about you, and ensure that you feel safe and cared for.
2) You don’t feel good enough.
Although you’ve proven successful in your career, have built a solid foundation for yourself, receive compliments regarding your accomplishments (and even your looks), you’ve begun to feel like an imposter. No matter the Kudos you receive from the outside world, your partner doesn’t seem to notice, and worse, mocks you for them.
Narcissists mock and ridicule for many reasons, including making themselves appear superior, but the main reason they mock their victim’s triumphs is because they aspire to destroy their victim’s self-esteem. What better way to keep you under their rule than to make you believe that no matter what you accomplish, you’re “still a loser underneath it all”. Sadly, this works quite effectively in many cases, resulting in victims of this type of abuse becoming so broken and dysfunctional that they lose everything – careers, children, homes, licenses (such as those required to perform as doctors, attorneys, and therapists), bank accounts, and worst of all, their sense of self.