Am I the Victim of Narcissistic Abuse?
When we love someone, it can be hard to see through rose-colored glasses when they are abusing us. Educating yourself about narcissistic abuse may help you protect yourself or a loved one from the hands of an abuser.
World Narcissistic Abuse Day presents the perfect opportunity to educate yourself on the subject, which is why we wrote this article covering what it is, signs to watch out for, and what to do when you fall victim to a narcissistic abuser.
What is Narcissistic Abuse?
To begin defining narcissistic abuse, we must first define narcissistic behaviors. Examples of narcissistic behaviors include:
- Excessively high feelings of self-importance
- Requiring extreme amounts of affection and admiration
- Overexaggerating achievements, stories, and accomplishments
- Unreasonable feelings of entitlement
- Expecting to be treated as though they are superior, regardless of what they have done
- Unable to handle any form of criticism
- Acting overly critical toward others
- Exuding arrogance
- Insisting they deserve the best (like the best car, newest iPhone model, etc.)
- Acting short-tempered when they do not receive what they want, when they want
- Feeling offended easily
Narcissistic abuse is a type of abuse that stems from the narcissistic behaviors listed above. When dealing with a narcissistic abuser, one may experience:
- emotional blackmail
- feeling as though they are walking on eggshells
- having their feelings invalidated
What to Do if You Are, May Be, or Have Been a Victim
Experiencing this form of abuse can negatively impact a person’s mental health, relationships, job, and overall quality of life. However, recovery is possible. Getting out and getting the help of a mental health professional can be essential for one’s recovery.
If you are a victim of narcissistic abuse, a few things you can do include:
Getting Out of the Relationship
I completely understand that doing so may not always be easy. If you can, leave your abuser and cut off contact with them. If you need, reach out to your local domestic violence shelter, the National Domestic Violence Hotline, or a loved one for help. [See our podcast episode on toxic, abusive relationships...]
Leaning on Loved Ones
Reach out to loved ones, whether that be friends or family, and let them be there for you. Having a support system will prove to be incredibly valuable in helping you through your healing process.
Find a Support Group
Your loved ones will do all they can to be there for you through this situation. However, if they have not been in the same situation, they may not be able to quite understand what you have gone through. Adding a support group to your journey toward recovery will help you feel understood, validated, and supported. Hearing other’s success stories after narcissistic abuse may be just the motivation you need to continue your journey of healing.
Talk to a Mental Health Professional
One of the most important things you can do for your healing journey after narcissistic abuse is to pursue therapy. In therapy, you and your therapist can work together to develop a deeper understanding of your thoughts and feelings, build a healing plan, and learn healthy coping mechanisms for difficult times.
We Are Here for You
Experiencing narcissistic abuse at the hands of someone you care for can be hurtful and traumatic. Those who experience narcissistic abuse will find that their mental, physical, social, and emotional health all feel the effects of it. However, with a little time and therapy, you will be able to begin your journey toward healing. If you need therapy, our counselors are here for you. Contact us today.
Keywords: narcissist, narcissistic abuse, counselor, therapy