Narcissistic Relationship Cycle: Use, Abuse, Dispose

We live in a narcissistic society today. Look around at those wielding the most power and influence. A large percentage of them are narcissists. (There are exceptions—individuals who have tremendous success and have great character and integrity).

Narcissists adopt a predictable cycle of Use, Abuse, Dispose. This pathological repetition can last a few weeks or decades, depending on how long you put your fate in the hands of a narcissistic personality. With a narcissist there is never an authentic relationship. He/she is a grandiose false self without conscience, empathy or compassion. Narcissists are ruthless and exploitive to the core.

Learn to recognize the NPD quickly and accurately. If they are oozing with too much charm and you get the intuition to step back, pay attention to this inner wisdom. Giving you the rush is part of their scheme to control and manipulate you. Narcissists always want something from you. If you think they love you, give that one up quickly. NPD’s are users only–They put on the show of a lifetime–consummate actors at center stage with their adoring audiences.

Narcissists completely lack empathy–the ability to feel and understanding what another person is experiencing on a deep level. They also lack compassion and are not introspective. They are street savvy and know how to find your most vulnerable parts and learn how to play to perfection.

Once the narcissist has gotten what he wants–status, pleasure, power, connections, intrigue, romance, etc. he sends you out the door without an apology, true explanation or a hint of guilt. Remember, these individuals do not have a conscience so they don’t experience guilt. They sleep very well at night while you are tossing about in emotional and psychological agony. Don’t let this happen to you. Study these NPD’s deeply and you will know how to identify them and keep them out of your life or show them the door with great dispatch.

Your life is precious. It belongs to you. You have many gifts. Use them—all of them and more. You deserve deep inner peace and relationships that are warm, loving, supportive and empathic.

Linda Martinez-Lewi, Ph.D.

Socialized Sociopaths Do Their Dirty Work Unscathed–Free Yourself from Them

The socialized sociopath is alive and very well in our culture today. Their numbers are growing and they are striving at the expense of those who are most vulnerable–their children, siblings, spouses. The image is impeccable. They convince everyone to believe their lies. They lead many lives and continually deceive, exploit and destroy. They commit crimes of the heart by abandoning their children, literally and emotionally and through their perpetration of great harm upon them. They treat their spouses like dirt and wipe the floors with them. (But no one sees this horrific display of multiple treacheries).

Those who are awake and aware need to spread the word about these monsters living in our midst. Many of those whom you tell will not believe you so be selective. The truth is a rare commodity these days. Money is speaking more loudly on the public stage and in the offices of our CEO’s and the movers and shakers in business and government.

It is time to rise to this occasion and extricate yourself from socialized sociopaths. If they are family members, go no contact with them. You don’t have to explain yourself or give them any reason. It is none of their business. After all, they have made your entire life a living hell. Why make excuses for the disasters they have visited upon you.

Your best counter play is the way you lead your life, your healing process, the discovery and use of your many creative gifts and finding those who deserve to be in your company. Finding the best ways for you to calm your mind and your nervous system is an essential part of your new life. Do this daily and it will become a habit. Did you forget to laugh? Smile broadly? Be very silly? You never forgot. Get back into practice.

Linda Martinez-Lewi, Ph.D.

Stop Cycling Back to the Narcissist for More Torture

I frequently–more times than I can count–hear from men and women who are trapped in a severely painful pattern of returning to their narcissistic spouse or narcissistic parent. Each time they go back they believe that life with the NPD is going to be different. This is not true. With very rare exception –Once A Narcissist Always A Narcissist! If you are involved with a narcissist it may help you to repeat these words to yourself and recognize that you can no longer tolerate sharing your life with this highly pathological person.

I use the word “torture” (“the action or practice of inflicting severe pain on someone as a punishment or to force them to do or say something, or for the pleasure of the person inflicting the pain”) in the title to emphasize how impossible narcissists make our lives with their multiple cruelties. Sadistic, cold, controlling, treacherous–they gain pleasure from weakening us, to have ultimate control over our being and in some cases to destroy us.

You don’t deserve this. You didn’t when you first became involved with this person. If you are the child of a narcissistic parent, you happened to be born by fate into a highly pathological family. First, know that this is not your fault. You are not to blame.

Some children grow up only knowing cruelty and torture. This is how their identities are shaped. The idea of being loved, feeling peace, protection or freedom is not part of their psychological repertoire. They have a prisoner of the gulag mentality and that is not surprising. We tend to repeat what we have experienced early in our lives. Some children have a sense that their narcissistic family members or their narcissistic spouses are very disturbed and they make a break for it early.

Being a child of a  narcissist lingers in the psyche, mind and heart. This innocent person did not get the bonding, loving touch and kind words of affirmation that he absolutely needed. He was criticized, thrown away, discounted and in severe cases—tortured.

Why would anyone return to this horrid scene of psychological massacre that almost killed our souls. Because human beings tend to repeat what they know, what is familiar. A child raised by a narcissist who feels undeserving and worthless and un-entitled will be drawn to partners who have a similar personality structure and will abuse them.

Over and over again the victim returns for more abuse, then leaves, then comes back and on it goes. In some cases the victim is broken and this is tragic.

Don’t wait any longer. Understand who your narcissistic torturer is–through and through. Then make a decision that you will sever this non-relationship. Do the work of healing yourself through the methods that work best for you–excellent psychotherapy (Be careful–don’t choose a narcissistic therapist), yoga practice that is gentle with emphasis on the breathing that quiets the nervous system, getting the sleep that you need and deserve, discovering and using your creative gifts, finding and nurturing loving and caring relationships.

I know that you will end this cycle of abuse and torture. I have faith in your decision and action to change your life along the pathway of healing and wholeness and yes, peace.

Linda Martinez-Lewi, Ph.D.

Narcissistic Sociopathic Parents Want You to Remain Their Psychological Slaves

You are a slave to no one. As an adult now you know this. If you do not, tell yourself this every day, during the day. You are a unique human being–love this person who is inside of you, this small child you have known all of your life. Many of us need to take time to hold our babies and whisper “I love you” to them.

In infancy and childhood and through the teen years those who grew up with narcissistic sociopaths were often treated horridly. You were at the disposal of your narcissistic sociopathic parent. The other –mother or father–was too weak, terrified, traumatized to protect you against this monstrous person who ruled the household.

In grammar school you were in stark fear as you counted the steps as you got closer to the front door of your house. Your heart rhythms beat like wild drums. Your mouth was dry. You wanted to scream but knew you dared not. He or she might hear you and the horrible drama already in progress would become more Hitchcockian. You may have asked yourself: Am I going to die tonight?” In the house you walked as quietly as possible, trying to be invisible and unheard as long as possible. Finally, the moment came when you faced the person who terrorized you the most. At night in bed you waited and heard every sound, every creak and murmur, always hoping that the beast downstairs would remain in his chair. (I use the pronoun he to represents male and female narcissistic sociopaths).

You survived that house of terror, desecration and desolation. You are the one who did it through each moment, day, months and years. That deserves our deepest respect.

The narcissistic sociopathic parent is internalized in many of his/her children. The child feels at the mercy of these cruel and unpredictable individuals. Due to this fusion, some children feel like slaves even after they have physically left their homes. Working with the aftermath of growing up with a narcissistic sociopath parent often involves participating in skilled psychotherapy. Others use various healing modalities like gentle hatha yoga, varying forms of meditation, creative pursuits, support groups and friendships.

As you heal you learn that you belong to yourself, that you are genuine and precious. There is and never will be anyone like you on the face of the earth ever again. Let this truth sink deep inside of you. You will find your way along the path to freedom. You will fly like a great bird. I can hear your wings soaring higher and higher into the blue.

Linda Martinez-Lewi, Ph.D.My book Freeing Yourself from the Narcissist in Your Life is out in Paperback and the Kindle version is available at Amazon.com for 9.99 Paperback and ebook is widely distributed.

Celebrate! You’ve Been Dumped by a Narcissist before It Got Serious

This may sound like tough talk but I have known too many victims of narcissists who married them not just once but two or three times. The psychological and emotional pain of enduring years and decades of verbal abuse, cold manipulations, treacheries, chronic lying, hidden agendas and the constant whiplash of living with a narcissist is astounding. It brings their victims to their knees and leaves some crawling. If you are going with a man or woman whom you suspect is a narcissist and this person has decided to show you the door, give you the cold shoulder, place you in the background of his/her life or simply give you the heave ho–it will smart at first but then remember it is a necessary blessing. If your intuition has been telling your for months that this person whom you are planning to marry has a serious personality issue you can’t put your head around but feel deep in your bones, listen up! You are getting the warning loud and clear, that this individual may likely be a narcissistic personality disorder. Listen to the music of his self absorption, obsession with his looks, over-love of money and status, inability to listen to you and honor your feelings, his authoritarian ways, his inappropriate forcefulness to get what he/she wants. Intuition always tells us the truth. When he or she shows you the door or if you beat the narcissist to it, run out into the clear blue sky of evening and kiss the stars. You are free!!!

Linda Martinez-Lewi, Ph.D.

Freeing Yourself From the Narcissist in Your Lifewill be published in a paperback edition on August 15, 2013

Martyred Married Narcissists–Spinning Tales of Woe That You Caused

Some spouses become alarmed when their narcissistic partner of many years suddenly appears docile and weak. He moans and mopes around you, making noises that you haven’t heard before. You start to feel sorry for him—but you have done your homework and pull back. “Wait a minute, this is a new act he is trotting out and I’m not buying it.”

The martyred narcissist tells everyone in reach how you have made his/her life, hell on earth. You have pressured him, caused him emotional distress with your unrelenting demands. You talk behind his back and tell lies about his fine character. You are cruel to his (narcissistic) mother who adores him. These mutterings  are bald lies. Turn all of this around and you know this is exactly what he has done to you. He is spinning tales faster than the leaders on the final round of the Tour De France.

Despite all of the drama you are going to win. You are well prepared and ready to end this horrid excuse for a marriage. With all of your documentation, an excellent attorney, the company of trusted support, you are ready to sever this non-relationship. You imagine sweet freedom each day as you move toward your goal. No one can ever fool you again. Be proud of yourself. It’s time to shine the light of your creative gifts, to feel your sails billowing as you move forward with ease and inner peace.

Linda Martinez-Lewi, Ph.D.

Freeing Yourself From the Narcissist in Your Lifewill be published in a paperback edition on August 15, 2013

Narcissists—Can’t Stop Talking About Their Superiority

A short time ago I was strongly reminded of the narcissist’s persistent adoration of self. This occurred after a meeting I attended. The narcissist of the moment came over to a small group of us and started talking about himself in grandiose terms and gestures, giddily swirling with his greatness. I had a strong urge to leave since I could feel the deluge coming but said to myself:  “I want to see how far this fellow will go. Will he ever stop talking about how superior and wonderful he is.” I and the clutch of those within his range were “treated” to an “I adore myself” soliloquy without periods, colons, semicolons or even a tiny comma. This was like a manic sales pitch with him and his innumerable accomplishments as the product. This grandiose classic narcissist presented a detailed professional history with extravagant hand gestures and body postures. He was mesmerized by his presence alone.

Every avenue this man went down led to his street of dreams that all came true due to his brilliance and perfection. (I applaud those who through their efforts and talents experience professional success.) I am speaking about the narcissistic personality disorder’s constant hunger for narcissistic supplies, his inability to listen to anyone else, his manic high on himself/herself as the ego soars to mythic elevations. Psychologically fueled by his delusional sense of self, this fellow traveled out of the earth’s orbit beyond gravity.

Finally, I made a movement toward the door and the spell was broken as others began to leave.

Beneath the surface of this unabashed display of adoration of self, is the broken damaged real self. On other occasions I have witnessed this narcissist’s primitive unconscious projections, perpetrated on unsuspecting others. In these instances this narcissist’s veneer had thinned and his unconscious feelings of self hatred and subjective emptiness were ejected on to innocent unsuspecting recipients.

Learn about the narcissistic personality in-depth. This knowledge will be your guide to recognizing these individuals quickly and protecting yourself from their endless self adoring litanies.

Linda Martinez-Lewi, Ph.D.

Freeing Yourself From the Narcissist in Your Lifewill be published in a paperback edition on August 15, 2013

Narcissistic Spouses Discard You When You Need Them The Most

Narcissists are essentially solo acts. They are incapable of forming genuine relationships, especially their spouses and children. Narcissists are duplicitous. They have many secret agendas. They compartmentalize their lives skillfully and without conscience.

After you have been married to a narcissist for a while you realize that this man or woman is not the person you met and with whom you fell in love. He switches quickly from one mood to another, almost as if he/she is changing personalities. Even when he is getting everything he wants–praise, success, adulation, prestige, etc. he will suddenly turn on his spouse. He is projecting and spewing his unconscious self loathing and psychological emptiness on to you. Spouses on the receiving end of these assaults often learn to ignore and rationalized these cruel behaviors. “Oh, he’s going through a tough time right now.” “He puts too much pressure on himself/herself.” Actually the narcissist applies full pressure and intimidation to everyone else. He moves in the fast lane of life, often weaving through the traffic, jeopardizing others. Since he doesn’t have a conscience, this doesn’t bother him in the least. He/she only knows that winning is everything.

After the marriage has turned stale—and this can happen quickly with narcissists since they have very short attention spans for spouses–the narcissist needs to figure out exactly what he is going to do with you. If you have become psychologically, emotionally or physically ill, the narcissist leaves you in the dust. I have heard stories of women in labor who had to drive themselves to the hospital. Narcissists are pretend parents. They use their children as narcissistic supplies. They need to present the image of themselves as the “great parent.”  This elaborate presentation fools most people who believe that the narcissist is a fine human beings, spouse and fine parent.

Narcissistic spouses are irritated and disgusted with spouses who are ill, have injuries or chronic physical problems. This cramps their style and doesn’t suit their high flying energy. Besides, it’s dreadful for their grandiose image. In many instances they find another partner and quickly plan to replace the spouse who has psychological or emotional problems or is going through a painful illness. Narcissists are without mercy or empathy. It is not part of their psychological makeup. After the divorce the spouse in great need and crisis is quickly abandoned like a piece of paper flying in an errant wind. Often there are no warnings that this individual is going to be abandoned and left without financial resources that have been purposely depleted by the narcissistic spouse. If there are children involved that don’t fit the image that the narcissistic spouse requires, he or she abandons them as well, leaving them to fend for themselves.

Narcissists never look back at the horrendous pain they have caused—pain and suffering that completely disrupts and damages the lives of their own spouses and children. They never think about this again. They are not haunted by any memory of their cruelties. They sleep well at night and are still completely full of themselves as they change the stage set for a renewal of a fresh new life with another person. This is a travesty, a horrible true scenarios that is repeated over and over again by narcissists with impunity in this world.

Linda Martinez-Lewi, Ph.D.

Freeing Yourself From the Narcissist in Your Lifewill be published in a paperback edition on August 15, 2013

 

Covert Narcissists Hiding in Holiness–Yoga Divas–Spiritual Gurus

It has become much the trend to be “spiritual” these days. There are innumerable individuals who sincerely choose and follow a spiritual path that are genuine and sincere and work consistently to be more aware, more empathic and better human beings. I am not talking about these people. I am addressing those who play the role of spiritual teachers in many of its definitions today.

One phenomenon is the popular rise of the practice of yoga. There are studios popping up; special clothing and gear of every kind. Whole industries have arisen as a result of the popularity of this practice. This is not negative by itself but suddenly you have studios catering to the glamour and money side of yoga rather than the true practice. Among these are a number of what I call Yoga Divas. These are narcissists who teach and take yoga.  There are yoga teachers and trainers of yoga students who present themselves as humble, genuine and holy. They may have studied the history, purpose and specific poses and understand this technically and teach their classes but their attention is not on the true purpose of yoga. Their aim is business and business only. It is important for people to make a living if they are providing a valuable service. I am speaking about teachers who are charging astronomical amounts of money for classes and even more to those who want to become yoga teachers. Many teacher training programs are short on training and long on the expense. Beginners are not given enough hands on time or theoretical knowledge to learn the fundamentals of yoga. Hatha yoga is five thousand years old and requires a deep commitment on the part of the teacher and the student.They are not aware that there are narcissistic individuals who are waiting to offer them the full package–a few hours of training with a certificate at the end  in exchange for high fees.  The Yoga Diva is unconcerned about what her students are learning. She is rushing them through for the purpose of quick monetary reward for her. The idea is to get as many students as possible to increase her income not to teach the principles of this healing ancient practice.

As the Yoga Diva gains more and more recognition, her fees increase tremendously. Now she can command so much more money. Some yoga studios flourish on the backs of vulnerable underpaid employees. The Yoga Diva is extremely demanding and self entitled. She  goes on vacations which she calls spiritual retreats (to let everyone know how holy she is), knowing she can leave her business in the hands of the her adoring followers.

Very similar are the attitudes, behaviors and actions of narcissistic spiritual gurus. These human embodied snakes take directly from the ideas of others, attractively package them and use the force and magnetism of their personalities to sell these goods. They offer a shortcut to reaching a higher consciousness over weekends often named “intensives.” The price tag on these “holy retreats” can cost in the thousands easily. I have known a number of individuals who have gotten into these unfortunate situations with phony yogis who are narcissists and even socialized sociopaths.

The manner, speech, gestures, choice of words of the covert narcissist are simultaneously cunning, clever and toxic, especially within this fake spiritual realm. Many individuals are psychologically desperate and emotionally starved and empty. They don’t know where to turn. Regular therapy has not worked for them. Now they turn to the spiritual world, thinking that those who follow these practices will help them to work through their  psychological and emotional issues. They become victims of some of the worst covert narcissists–those who play the martyr, saintly role masterfully. They have been taking advantage of emotionally vulnerable and fragile individuals for decades. They know just how to play them. They look deeply into the spiritual neophyte’s eyes and draw them into their trust. That is the beginning of the hypnotic fusing that takes place. The new student becomes highly dependent on the guru and will spend any amount of money and time to be with this person whom he believes can free him from his emotional burdens and painful psychological symptoms, to experience a strong sense of self and personal confidence, to feel lovable. Empty promises are made but never met. The guru knows this going in each time. As long as spiritual guru plays his part well, he continues to attract followers who cast their hard earned money his way.

Learn from these tales of pseudo spirituality and covert narcissism. You will be prepared for whoever comes along and know immediately that he or she is wearing the costumes of holiness. Beneath the sacred robes and ingratiating mien is a snarling beast.

Linda Martinez-Lewi, Ph.D.

Freeing Yourself From the Narcissist in Your Lifewill be published in a paperback edition on August 15, 2013