In a relationship with a narcissist – The different phases

Living with a family member or a spouse/significant other who is narcissist often will really throw you off your bearing, because you go through extremes – from idealization down to being discarded.

My search to understand narcissism and the codependents (who stay by the narcissists side) lead me to this article that i thought was right ON TARGET describing the phases i went through when i was in a relationship with a narcissist:

Phase 1: Idealization
During this phase a narcissist is very loving and is often in his or her best behavior. A narcissist can be extremely charming and lovely, which often makes one to fall head over heels in love with them. If a narcissist is cheating on his or her present partner with a new lover, it is often more due to the actions of a narcissist than the Lover that the secret relationship started in a first place. While pursuing a new Lover, a narcissist is often claiming that they are very unhappy in their current relationship, are about to get a divorce/separate, have never felt as strongly towards anyone else as they are now feeling towards the new Lover, etc. A narcissist knows how to say all the right things to disarm the other person and to make the other person fall for them.
We all want to be loved and adored by the person we love. During the idealization phase a narcissist is fulfilling this need and is making us feel special, this is why it is so difficult to resist them. Unfortunately this “honeymoon” period never lasts for long. A narcissist soon grows bored and restless and starts to look for another provider of a narcissistic supply. This is when a narcissist enters the devaluation phase.

Phase 2: Devaluation
During this phase the behavior of a narcissist changes, they may become cold and uncaring almost overnight. A narcissist no longer tells you how much he or she loves you, but instead becomes increasingly critical towards you. Suddenly a narcissist finds all sorts of flaws in your behavior and possibly also in the way you look. You start to feel increasingly unhappy and depressed, because you have no idea what you have done to deserve such treatment. You may try to please your partner and try to “make him or her love you again”, however nothing you do seems to be good enough.

During this phase a narcissist may start to look for another provider of a narcissistic supply and may end up cheating or having an affair, however still keeping the current spouse “available”, in case the new relationship does not work out the way they are expecting. A narcissist is often getting “kicks” when he or she is thinking that two people (the current spouse and the secret lover) are “madly in love” with him/her. This feeling serves as the source of a narcissistic supply.

Phase 3: Discarding
During the phase of discarding a narcissist becomes totally indifferent to the needs and wishes of their (soon-to-be former) spouse. A narcissist is ready to move on after either finding another source of a narcissistic supply or simply having drained the current source (the current spouse) dry. The current spouse no longer serves as a source of a narcissistic supply and therefore the current spouse is no longer useful for a narcissist. When a narcissist reaches this phase, there is usually no chance to reason with them. If you try to beg them to get back together with you, you are only feeding their ego and providing them with a transient source of a narcissistic supply as they feel you are now devastated after loosing the Perfect Being.

Narcissists are not pure sadists
As I stated above, the purpose of this website is not to mock narcissists since they are considered to be mentally disturbed individuals. It is important to keep in mind that a narcissist is not a pure sadist. A sadist is a person who experiences pleasure when he or she is acting emotionally and physically violently and sees the pain this behavior is causing to others. For a sadist, this pleasure serves as motivation for violence. Narcissists do not experience similar pleasure when they see other people hurting. In this regard their motivation for abuse is different from a “pure” sadist.

One of the main problems with narcissists is that they are extremely self-centered and unable to put themselves into the position of another person. A person who is not narcissistic can relate to the people around, and due to this a normal person is usually not behaving in a way that is making other people feel bad.

A narcissist, however, often cannot understand that his or her behavior is making the other person feel sad and depressed. Due to this a narcissist often gets angry when he or she feels that the other person is “making a huge thing out of nothing” or cannot forget their misbehavior in just 5 minutes. The spouse of a narcissist perceives this total lack of empathy as cruel and cold-hearted behavior.

A Narcissist and cheating
A typical example of the inability to put oneself into another person’s position is when a narcissist has been cheating on his or her spouse, but has returned back together with the cheated spouse after the cheating took place. A narcissist cannot understand that it takes a long time for another person to get over the negative memories related to cheating. The process of getting over cheating in a relationship can take years. A narcissist does not understand that the other person must process the matter for as long as it is needed and during this time one must ask the same questions over and over again in an attempt to rebuild the trust. On the contrary, a narcissist may get upset and angry, even revert to a narcissistic rage, if the cheated spouse cannot get over the betrayal relatively soon. Sometimes a narcissist expects the recovery process to happen in just a matter of days, even though in reality the process takes on average 1-2 years.

Source: http://Home/narcissism/narcissistic-personality-disorder-how-to-recognize-a-narcissist.html


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Narcissist What Are They Like

My concept of narcissism a few years ago was pretty simple.  Anybody who was egotistical or full of himself, or what we simply call as “mayabang” was a narcissist.  Anybody who couldn’t help but look at themselves in the mirror more often than a normal person would or anybody who cared and talked so much about their outward appearance (kardashan syndrome) was a narcissist.

Although i took psychology classes in college, i never really took what i learned at heart.  I think when we discussed the subject of narcissism i  simply just memorized the material kept it in my short term memory and that was that.

Recently though i had been reading and researching more about the characteristics of a narcissist and why they can inflict so much pain to the people who love them.  As well as why a lot of people (like me) didn’t even realize i was living with one…until Dr. Jekyll turned to Mr. Hyde.

Narcissists are not simply just mayabang, in fact true narcissist do not often come off as mayabang to people who dont know them that well. They are actually charming and quite captivating at the beginning, with just the right amount of self confidence that would not put you off.

Below is a list of common narcissistic characteristics. Note, that some of these characteristics are embodied by non narcissistic people.  The main difference is in the degree at which these characteristics show in the narcissist.  A narcissist can not tone down these selfish characteristics even during unusual times like if there’s a calamity, a death in the family, sickness of a spouse or a birth of a new baby.  The narcissist because of their inability to empathize will still demand the world to revolve around them and strongly show these characteristics despite the change in the scenario.  Non narcissistic people, because they have empathy, tone down their selfish behavior at least until after everything goes back to normal.

  • Pathological charmers (people often think that narcissists are egotistical and outright mayabang. not at the start and not to people who dont know them well enough.  they are pathological charmers, they will brag a bit but just enough to garner your attention and render them alluring. This charm is what will allow them to to manipulate people.
  • Inability to empathize (this is really the key characteristic of a narcissist, where a normal person can empathize or at the very least feel real pity, the narcissist is unable to do so.  This lack of empathy is often subtle – because whether or not someone has empathy is really hard to determine, but for people close to the narcissist you can spot this but often deny that it is what it is).
  • Expects special treatment (everyone wants special treatment and so most normal people hope that they be treated VIP style, but a narcissist will do more than just try they will demand at the most inappropriate place and an inappropriate time )
  • Feeling of entitlement
  • Inability to admit that he or she is wrong (even if caught red handed)
  • Inability to receive criticism (most of us don’t want to be criticized that doesn’t make us all narcissist.  the difference is that non narcissistic people may not openly accept the criticism in public but upon realization that it was constructive they will try to make some minor changes or show a little bit of acceptance. true narcissists wouldn’t even think twice about whether its constructive or not. They just wont accept it.
  • Unexpected, strong bursts of rage in situations that WOULD NOT trigger rage in normal people. There aggressive outbursts are referred to as narcissistic rage.
  • Does not react to tears. If other person starts crying because of a mistake a narcissist had done, that may even aggravate the rage of a narcissist
  • Perceives oneself as omnipotent, superior individual (in fact the narcissist loves to be identified with people who are either in power, rich, influential and will be kissing their asses as much as they can to stay in the same circle)
  • Strong need for admiration. Admiration serves as a form of a narcissistic supply. Without sufficient amount of narcissistic supply a narcissist feels empty and unsatisfied. A narcissist is like a drug addict, and narcissistic supply in its different forms is the drug.
  • Is often envious and mocks other people (behind their backs of course)
  • In the beginning of the relationship idealizes one’s partner and often talks about supreme, never-ending love. From a narcissist whom you just met he will refer to you as his “true love”, “soulmate”, etc.  However as the relationship proceeds a narcissist often withdraws his or her attention and may become cold and uncaring, even cruel.
  • Is often untruthful and due to this often ends up cheating in a relationship. Cheating is often a consequence of other traits of a narcissist, such as the feeling of entitlement (it is impossible for a narcissist to do anything wrong and so a narcissist does not perceive cheating to be a huge “crime”), inability to empathize with the cheated partner and the need for admiration (narcissistic supply).
  • Double standards: A narcissist twists the rules so that they fit to the current needs of a narcissist. For example, if the spouse of a narcissist is cheating on a narcissist, the spouse is considered to be dishonest and bad person, whereas if a narcissist is cheating it is not wrong, because a narcissist simply “fell in love” and followed his or her heart. Double standards also apply to other areas in life.(Source: http://Home/narcissism/narcissistic-personality-disorder-how-to-recognize-a-narcissist.html)
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Welcome to our Narcissist Support Group (Philippines)

Welcome to our Narcissistic Personality Disorder Survivors Group (Philippines). A resource and support forum dedicated to Filipinos who have dealt with a spouse, loved one or a family member with narcissistic personality disorder (NPD). Interacting with these individuals and recovering from the damage that they have inflicted emotionally, physically and sometimes even financially, to the people who love them can be a painful and draining process, especially if you are alone with no one to talk to.  It is our hope that in our own little way we can help survivors get thru each step of recovery process. 


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