Most likely, you’ll also become unconsciously attracted to a romantic partner who reminds you of the narc you just left (or who left you). He made sure you can’t forget him easily, even if he was terribly cruel at the end.
Also, we tend to be attracted to the same type of person anyway. So if you’re usually or always attracted to narcissists, then most likely your taste is not going to change.
Getting involved too early after the end of a relationship with a narcissist is dangerous. Even with a non-narcissist, old patterns will still come up and you will be hypervigilant and suspicious of your new partner, causing them confusion and eventual discord.
If you’re falling for a non-narc, that’s a good sign, but if you just left an abusive relationship, please wait. Envision a giant red STOP sign.
Be friends instead. Now’s not the time to get involved beyond that level. If you met someone who truly cares for you, they won’t mind waiting a while and being friends with you.
If you’re already falling hard for someone, I know it’s going to be really hard to resist the pull of a new romance. It’s a powerful force, built into normally-wired people’s genes.
But remember, even though it feels like the most exciting, heady, intoxicating rush you ever felt, that feeling won’t last: what you feel is infatuation, a crush–actually caused by changes in the brain that act like a euphoric drug. That’s really what it boils down to.
Infatuation so soon or new relationship after narcissistic abuse is really just a form of transference onto a phantom “therapist” [the person you are infatuated with] when you are at your most vulnerable. You’re looking for someone to rescue you.
There is no Prince Charming. A love relationship cannot rescue you from yourself, your memories, or your PTSD. By its nature, it can’t. You are the only one who can make you well, with the help of therapists, counsellors or another other trusted person who is not involved sexually or romantically with you.
So be patient, wait until you heal yourself and feel more confident. Then if you fall in love, dive in and enjoy it–and with any luck, it might turn into the real thing.
Thank you to Mary Pranzatelli for this idea.