The hardest thing to overcome when you break up with a narcissist is to go back to the place where you once were.
It’s almost impossible to quickly shift your mind and your heart from being abused and dwelling in pain to enjoy breathing the fresh air of freedom.
There is nothing wrong going on with you if you don’t know how to make the shift.
You’re not crazy for still hanging on to the person who almost destroyed you. You’re not the first nor the last to go through that much pain.
You’re not stupid because you fell for his tricks, and most importantly, it’s not your fault.
The irresistible urge you have to come back to him every time he treats you like shit or thinking you’re not good enough for anyone else—so it’s better to be with him than alone—is all part of his mind games.
You were supposed to feel like that. It means he carried out his every step like he planned to.
But when you leave, when he goes one step too far—and believe me narcissists will always try and go a bit further to get as much energy from you as possible up to the moment you reach your breaking point…
So when you leave, you end up confused and asking how did it all happen? You thought your relationship meant something; you thought he really loved you.
You try to find reasons why he changed all of a sudden. Well, it didn’t happen overnight.
Narcissists are people who have a personality disorder which means they are like that all the time.
They don’t change their behavior because something triggers their disorder. They’ve been born like that, and they are like that from the moment you meet them. The fact you don’t see it is because they hide it until they’ve got you in their grip.
Once you realize that your partner has a problem, the empathy kicks in, and you feel sorry for him.
You want to help him by being understanding and compassionate. That works only for a short period of time.
Soon enough you’ll see that the abuse is still going on if not even getting worse.
You keep giving him second chances because you believe he can change. You think it’s not his fault. He just needs to learn to think before he speaks or to control himself.
So you finally open your eyes, and you decide it’s time to get away. But that is not as easy as it sounds.
It seems like you’re going around in circles. Whatever you do, you’re not able to break the cycle.
But healing takes a long time. It’s excruciating and devastating. But every good deed you do for yourself, every act of kindness, takes you one step closer to being okay.
This is what happened to me. I took baby steps. I did small insignificant things for myself, and after some time, I decided that I like this new feeling.
I decided that I want to be happy. So slowly, I shifted from being miserable to returning to my old happy self.
This is how I got over my narcissistic ex:
1. Accept he’s a narcissist
He suffers from a Narcissistic Personality Disorder which basically means that your whole life with him was one big fat lie because he is a lie. Everything he has ever said to you or done wasn’t at all honest.
It was all carefully designed to capture you and use you as his narcissistic supply. He isn’t that charming boy you think you know.
That was all just love-bombing—the enormous amount of love he showers you with before he starts abusing you and finally discarding you.
2. Set boundaries
Get yourself out of the environment that is making you feel bad.
Get rid of everything that reminds you of him. But, if it’s impossible to get away from him physically, then try something called the “Grey Rock Method”.
The idea of the “Grey Rock Method” is making yourself the least appealing to your narcissist as you can.
You have to be boring as hell—unattractive physically and mentally. If they don’t find you interesting, they won’t feed off of you.
But the most important boundary you must learn to set is how to say ‘no’. you have to reject things you don’t like.
You have to learn to stand up for yourself by chasing away people and declining things that are not good for you.
3. Get mentally healthier
After that much time spent with a narcissist, your mental health deteriorates. Their behavior can destroy a person, especially if the person has stronger empathic traits.
Empaths tend to understand destructive people and put themselves in their shoes just to see how they’re feeling.
This makes an empath try to understand a narcissist which ends up destroying the person who is just trying to help.
Try to vent those toxic feelings out of your system. Try something relaxing to get your mind off of him and the abuse you were experiencing all that time.
The mind is a miraculous thing. Nurture it, be kind to it, and it will soon get back to the stage where none of these toxic thoughts and feelings existed.
4. Let yourself be angry and disappointed for as long as you need
You’ll want to destroy his life. You’ll want to make him suffer and get even for every little thing he did to you.
But you’ll also be scared which will thankfully prevent you from taking any action.
If you did, it would backfire on you, and he would attack you with everything he’s got.
But, it’s better that you don’t do anything. Leave the self-destruction up to them. It’s what they do best anyway.
5. Don’t try to get closure
There is no point in trying to make them understand how you feel.
They are not capable of comprehending those kinds of emotions. They have the emotional maturity of a five-year-old.
So, please don’t even bother. You’ll end up getting even more annoyed, and for some reason, he’ll probably see your need for closure as a cry to get back together.
6. Forgive yourself
Learn the truth, and accept it. You’ve been lied to. You’ve been manipulated and tricked.
It’s not your fault for any of the things a narcissist did to you. So don’t blame yourself for going to hell and back.
Forgive yourself because something like this could happen to anyone.
You’ve fallen into a narcissistic trap, and he used every one of your positive traits as a weapon of destruction against you. It’s not your fault.
7. Go no contact
Narcissists are not easy to get rid of. You can block them on social networks.
You can try to avoid them, but you won’t succeed on the first try.
They will haunt you by using your common friends. They’ll try to find out information about you via your friends.
They will spread rumors. Don’t be surprised if you “accidentally” bump into them on the road. All those encounters were planned to happen.
They will make sure you know every happy detail about their life. They need you to know that they moved on the second you left. That’s why it’s important to them to keep in contact with you.
It’s their final try to lure you back in by destroying you a bit more, by trying to prove they are the mature ones and you’re acting like a child.
No contact is the only way out. You’ll have to at least try to keep it. No matter what anyone says about you, you know that you’re not the crazy ones.
Those are still leftovers of his mind games, and you know it.
Don’t answer your phone. Don’t answer your emails, and discard anyone who tries to blame you for narcissistic behavior. At this point, you can only trust yourself.
8. Don’t let the past get to you
The past will try to come after you. That is nothing more than a sign that you’re not over him yet.
It means that you’re halfway there, but not quite there yet. Just keep on doing what you’re doing because you’re doing a good job.
Give yourself a sense of purpose in life, and focus on making your dreams come true.
Focus on your future rather than on your past. Thinking about the future and setting up goals for yourself will definitely help you get over the past sooner.
9. Be patient with your friends
Give those friends some time. They will come around.
They will realize they have been also a victim of narcissistic abuse. The narcissist’s mask will fall sooner or later, and by that time, everyone will know that you aren’t the person that man presented you to be.
Do yourself a favor and ditch each and every person who sides with him.
It’s an act of kindness to yourself. You really want to clean your life out of toxic people.
10. Be Happy!
You’re finally free! You’re finally able to do whatever you want to do, and meanwhile, that narcissist of yours is repeating the same thing he did with you—only this time he is hiding under a new mask.
He is ruining someone’s life, but that person will see right through him and get out of that relationship the same way you did. In the end, that person is also going to be happy.
And him? He will stay the same empty piece of shit as he has been for his whole life.
Maria Parker is also the author of Her Way book “On Getting Over A Narcissist”