5. Willingness/capacity to evolve a relationship into mature levels of true intimacy:
An empathic survivor generally knows what it takes to experience a healthy love relationship. This understanding includes the awareness that at some point the infatuation stage will peter out and the roll-up-your sleeves work of true intimacy (and the “you left the toothpaste cap off” frustrations) of really getting to know one another on a deeper level unfold.
Remember that extreme emotional abusers tend to home in on folks who know how to do the work of relationships past the shiny high of infatuation, including all the messy and not fun work of paying bills, child-rearing, house-tending, etc. We know that extreme abusers do not have the capacity to evolve the relationship to a higher, more mature level and stay stuck in cycles of idealize/devalue/discard.
Survivors, however, can and do move on to experience healthy relationships in love, work and family with healthy others who are able to reciprocate deeper levels of emotional vulnerability and trust-building.
So you see, there is great hope for survivors of emotional abuse to heal! The very qualities that were draws for abusers are also draws for emotionally healthy people. When survivors do the healing work of trauma recovery in psychotherapy, they move forward to gather stronger powers of discernment as well. When a survivor encounters a potential abuser, often times the “Nar Dar” Alert goes off as the survivor fine-tunes their capacity to engage in healthy connections with others post recovery.
Most important for survivors in recovery from narcissistic abuse is to connect with competent and compassionate helping professionals who are licensed to provide psychotherapy for relationship trauma; broaden and deepen healthy social support tribe; ramp up self-care regimens, and to fully own and practice the Super Powers that have been uniquely bestowed upon them.
Here’s to healing! Namaste,
Printed with permission Originally appeared on Andrea Schneider.com