How to Live with a Narcissist-
Turns out, its not as easy as I thought. Also, once you stop dancing to the narcissists manipulations, they don’t necessarily give up, they just start whining about how you don’t love them anymore, and aren’t trying to make your relationship work. In addition, once you stop freaking out when the narcissist threatens to leave you, they start trying to make YOU leave, i.e. kick you out. I quote, “you just need to leave for a couple days and then you’ll realize that I love you”. Really?! Ugh, I don’t think so. He really thinks that once I am without him I will shrivel up into a ball of neediness and come begging him to take me back. I cant tell him the only reason I’m still here is because I cant afford my own place, yet. I cant tell him that once I’m gone there is NO coming back. I don’t care what, he will never be with me again.
So, I don’t think I will be able to make it to January 2016. And, I don’t want to either. New date, either March 15, or whatever day kid 1 is out of school. Either 4 or 6 months from now, its done! I cant keep living like this. And I can’t tell if hes trying to get rid of me (that’s seriously what it seems like) or if he’s just trying to scare me into compliance. Either way, its crap and I cant keep dealing with it!
In the meantime, I was doing some scouting around yesterday and found this post by Dr Sam Vaknin about things to do if you expect to live with a narcissist. Its pretty intense, basically your treating them like a mentally unstable person, because that is exactly what they are! Its pretty eye opening.
I remember the first time I watched some of Dr Sam Vaknins youTube videos, I was horrified and could not believe that was really what was going on in my relationship. I thought “hes not that bad, he cant possibly be a narcissist!” Guess what, he has become that bad, and I’m sure he will only get worse as time goes on. (Word of caution, Vaknin is himself a self proclaimed Narcissist, so sometimes he is hard to listen to and makes me want to punch him though the screen, but he is a good source of information).
I am not sure how many of his “tips” I can actually follow. I already almost feel like I’m selling my soul just living as I am, but what I’m doing isn’t working, so unless I want this to all blow up in my face, I need to step it up until I am ready to get out, on my own terms. Top tips on How to Live With a Narcissist I plan to implement:
- Don’t disagree or contradict with the narcissist.
- Complement the narcissist dramatically on the superficial things that matter most to him.
- Never mention myself, make sure all statements are about him and don’t require any intimacy (this will actually protect me as well).
- Listen to all the narcissists stories and encourage him to talk about himself. Dismiss it all internally as false, but pretend to be endlessly fascinated.
- Begin to keep separate finances from the narcissist (secretly of course) and look for my emotional support elsewhere. (Facebook groups are excellent for this, though you may want to create a new profile to be sure he doesn’t find out, as are and real life friends you can mange to keep and trust).
- Act as though I am already a single mom, take out the trash myself, take care of the kids myself, keep the housecleaning up myself. Don’t expect him to help at all and if he does, praise him exorbitantly.
- Lastly, practice self care. Its vital for me to maintain my own sense of self during this time. I know this will probably be one of the hardest things I have ever done, But I will get through it!
Some of these things are really going to suck. Particularly, the endless praise part, I suck at lying and will sound so phony to myself, but I’m sure he will buy it because he’s that vain. And I need to start making lists and following through. I need to gather the things I need to move out. I have to start looking for a place to live and figuring out what I’ll be able to afford, and where I want to be geographically. I need to meet with a lawyer and start getting my paperwork in order. There’s a lot left to do…
– How to Live with a Narcissist, by Samantha Matthews.