How do I handle my narcissistic ex? Will my narcissistic ex ever forget me? Should I keep in touch with my narcissistic ex? How can I completely get over my narcissistic ex? How do I know that I am over a narcissistic ex? If you are looking for answers to these or more questions, this article is for you.
My name is Sean Galla, an online support group facilitator for more than 10 years. I have overseen numerous support groups in my years of work, including facilitating narcissist survivor support groups. I know firsthand how important it is for survivors of narcissistic behaviors to find a place where they can share and get help for their experiences. If you have a narcissistic ex you do not know how to handle, this article has the information you need to help you overcome the trauma and live a better, more fulfilling life.
This article will cover everything you need to know about surviving a narcissistic ex.
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Narcissistic personality disorder (NPD) is defined as a borderline mental disorder in which the individual exhibit an inflated sense of grandiosity and a deep-set need for admiration from everyone around them. When one suffers from this disorder, they believe that they are superior to others and see nothing wrong in showing little regard for other people’s feelings. However, behind this mask of confidence lies fragile low self-esteem and vulnerability.
According to statistics, at least 1% of the global population suffers from NPD, with men more prone to the condition than women (roughly 75% of all diagnosed cases). However, many more cases go undiagnosed since most people do not seek treatment.
Practical evidence shows that narcissists make a habit of manipulating everyone around them to the point of wearing down their victims. Victims of narcissistic behavior can quickly lose their self-worth and self-determination. They are made to believe the narcissist’s reality instead of believing in their reality (gaslighting).
There are thousands of narcissists all over the world. On one side of their personality traits, these are self-loving, charismatic people with excess charm. On the other side is a person with narcissistic traits characterized by gaslighting and other narcissistic tendencies. People with narcissistic disorder have a deep sense of self-worth and greatness that makes them manipulative and easily angered when they do not get the attention or result they want and consider their right.
Narcissistic behavior is characterized by selfishness, cockiness, love for power, and vanity. Narcissists are self-involved and believe everyone around them should adhere to their orders. Most people choose to leave the relationship because of the imbalance and abuse involved.
After leaving a narcissistic abusive relationship, the last thing you imagine is that you will have to deal with a narcissistic ex who refuses to go away. They work to make it impossible for you to forget them as their way of maintaining hold of you. Here is everything you need to know about getting over a narcissistic ex and how to handle one.
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Why Does a Narcissistic Ex Stay In Touch?
If you have an ex who simply doesn’t seem to want to leave you alone, the chances are that they are a narcissist. Several factors motivate a narcissist to want to stay in touch with you. However, all these reasons are selfish and are meant to serve their self-centered nature.
The motivation to remain in touch with you can be from their need to hoover over you to try to suck you back into the relationship. This happens after they have taken you through the whole narcissistic abuse cycle that involves love bombing that was used to pave the way for the relationship. This is followed by crushing your sense of self-worth, injuring your mental health, silent treatment, and evaluation before they can discard you, leaving you to feel hopeless with a case of Stockholm syndrome.
Narc exes always show traits that connect to their sense of self-worth and importance, characterized by immense pride and entitlement to you as an ex. They ensure they keep in touch with you to prevent you from moving on and asserting their control over the situation. They can try and exploit the situation for personal gain and feed their need for validation. They can maintain their contact with an ex to maintain a flow of their narcissistic supply.
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Signs That You Are Dealing With a Narcissistic Ex
Sometimes, you do not realize that you were in a relationship with a narcissist until it has ended. Some red flags that signify narcissism include:
A need for validation
A narcissist relies on putting others down or cowering others into admiring them and showering them with praise. This need for validation and admiration is how they appeal to their self-esteem, and they will do anything to get it. They result in exploitation and manipulation of their victims to ensure they get things their way.
Sense of entitlement
Narcs have a very high sense of self-importance and entitlement. They believe that they deserve to be treated in a certain way and will accept nothing less. They put themselves on a pedestal and think they are better than everyone else around them, including their ex-spouses. This is meant to lure you into allowing them in your life after you leave.
Delusions of grandeur
A narcissistic ex will use all manner of lies and exaggeration to feel the illusion that they are superior to others. They create an idealistic version of who they think they are and prefer to associate only with people they imagine are their peers.
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Lack of empathy
A narcissistic ex will show no empathy for you or the people around them. They cannot relate to your pain or see the role they played in your breakup. Their only goal is to feed their ego, and they will go to any lengths to achieve these goals. This lack of empathy can be masked by a charming personality.
How to Handle a Narcissistic Ex Who Will Not Leave You Alone
Even after you end a narcissistic relationship, your narc ex remains relentless and will still keep in touch with you. Here is how to deal with them to ensure you do not get trapped in their abusive cycle.
Focus on their behavior
Knowing the narcissistic behaviors you are dealing with makes it easier to respond. While it may not help to point out that they are narcissists, understanding their patterns makes it easier for you to avoid their manipulation.
Do not fall for the pleading
A common narcissistic trait is the use of pleading as a way of arm-twisting you back into their cycle, especially if you are the one who ended the relationship. They will make all manner of promises, including how they will change their behavior and even pretend that they have changed. This is a manipulating tactic to win you back since you left the intimate relationship prematurely for them.
Sometimes the best way to get rid of a narcissistic ex is by completely shutting them out of your life. This is especially important if you need time to heal from the emotional abuse and torment they put you through. You can choose to block them from your phone, social media platforms, email, and any other method to ensure no contact between you and them for your well-being.
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Will I Ever Get Over My Narcissistic Ex?
This is a common question asked by survivors of narcs, especially after the abusive ex-partner seems to have started a new relationship soon after the breakup. The good news is that it is possible to get over an abusive ex and the codependency you got used to. However, you will need to put in the self-care work to be able to find healing, manage to trust again, and move on.
Go to therapy
Seeing a mental health professional like a counselor, psychiatrist, or even a psychotherapist can go a long way in helping you heal from the mental health issues caused by your narcissistic ex. Because your ex kept you on edge throughout the relationship, you likely developed anxiety and other mental health issues. Seeing a professional is the best way to overcome the effects of the trauma.
Join a support group
A narcissist support group is a platform where survivors of narcissists come together to share, learn, and heal. Generally, it is a group where people who have been victims of narcissistic exes can meet and share their experiences. Narcissist survivors who have recovered from their trauma and want to help others find healing facilitate these groups. By joining a narcissist support group, you have a better chance of leading a better life after your traumatic experience with a narcissist.
Online support groups are safe spaces where you are amongst people who understand. This gives you enough room to share and learn without fear of judgment or intimidation. If you are a man looking for a narcissistic support group, MensGroup offers one of the best online options.
As a man who has been a victim of narcissistic behavior, one of the most challenging parts of recovery is finding someone to talk to about your feelings, emotions, and trauma. Most people do not believe that men, too, can be victims of toxic relationships. Whether you have a narcissist ex-wife or ex-girlfriend, Men’s Group is an all-men online platform where you can get the support you need.
MensGroup believes that anyone can heal, grow, and change with the right support. You will be placed in a group with other men who have been through narcissistic abuse and understand your situation. This gives you a free space to share and learn from others who have previously walked in your shoes. With a support system of fellow men, you can overcome your trauma and lead a healthy, successful, and happy life.
Having a narcissistic ex is stressful and can hinder your efforts to move on. Learning how to handle them is the first step toward moving on with your life. With the information in this article, you are better placed to handle your narc ex better and move on with your life. If you are a man, joining a group such as Men’s Group offers you a platform where you can share your story to inspire others and get support to overcome the trauma of being a victim of narcissistic behavior.
*Sources: 1. My Narcissistic Ex Moved on Too Quickly but I Haven't 2. Five Signs Your Ex Is a Narcissist 3. The Narcissistic Ex, Part I 4. How To Get Over A Narcissist: 11 Essential Steps 5. Satisfying New Study Shows Narcissists Lose in the End