Understanding Today's Narcissist
Understanding Today's Narcissist

Episode 6 · 2 years ago

Should I Stay or Should I Go?

ABOUT THIS EPISODE

David wondered if it was time for his relationship with Stephanie to end. In the beginning, things were great, and he thought that he found the love of his life. She was charming, helpful, generous, and gentle. But as time passed, new problems emerged. The ease of their relationship was now tumultuous. The excitement and… (more…)

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...to grow with Christine Dot com forward slash narcissism. That's grow with Christine dot com, forward slash narcissism. This master class will change your life again. That's grow with Christine Dot Com. Forward Slash Narcissism. Oh this is understanding. Today's narcissist brought to you in part by Psych Centralcom and now here's your host, Christine Hammond. One of the biggest questions I get asked is should I stay in this narcissistic relationship or should I leave? So we're going to talk about that today. We're going to talk about how do you make a...

...decision whether you should stay in a relationship or whether you should go from it. So let's talk about David and Stephanie. David started to wonder if it was time for his relationship with Stephanie to end. In the beginning things were great. He thought he found the love of his life. She was charming, helpful, generous and gentle, but as time passed, new problems started to emerge. This might sound familiar to you. The ease of their relationship was now tumultuous. So the excitement and the intensity of the relationship made it easy to overlook Stephanie's temper. She explained that she had a previous abuse of relationship and that she didn't mean to be so controlling, but he triggered her reminding her of her abuser. The problem was that she became abusive in those moments. David thought that he gave her enough time and demonstrated that he was...

...safe, she would actually relax, but she didn't. So the longer the relationship lasted, the more chaotic things became. There seemed to be two extremes, the intense love and deep connection, followed by the turbulent and confusing interactions. Arguments now escalated to the point that David was shutting down, but every time David Confronted Stephanie, she was apologetic and promise that it wouldn't happen again, because this sound familiar. The problem is that it did happen again, over and over again. It was time for David to actually make a decision about the future of their relationship. So, with the help of his therapist, David made a list of all the problematic things he was experiencing and he...

...gave examples for each of them. I'm going to share with you the list that he wrote and hopes that it's going to help you make a decision. So if you are stuck between whether you should stay or you should go, here are ten things to look at. Number one transfers risk. Stephanie asked David to assume her risk in a sticky situation. After being late to work again and knowing she might be fired, she begged David to call her boss and tell him that she had a flat tire. When David resisted, there was backlash of manipulative counter attacks designed to force him to submit to her request. Despite his best judgment, he gave in to her to keep the peace. So that's an example of what it means to transfer risk. She's transferring the risk from herself on to him. That's number one. Number two, constant victimization. Stephanie told stories of past relationships where she was painted as the...

...victim and her exes were described as the villain. There was a constant influx of terrible people who have wronged her throughout her life, with no apparent responsibility on Stephanie's part. This was a forecast of what would eventually happen to David if he ended their relationship. So number two is this constant victimization where Stephanie is always the victim and everybody else is the problem. Number three inappropriate anger. Anger is a base of motion and it's a catchall for all other more intense feelings such as loneliness, fear, guilt and even controlling tendencies. They can come out an inappropriate way, such as aggression, like bullying, suppression, like the silent treatment, or passive aggressive such as biting sarcasm. Stephanie's...

...outbursts were intense and inappropriate expressions of anger designed to force David into submission. There was no allowance for David to have any inappropriate anger outbursts. So we remember. We all get angry, but Stephanie was allowed to have inappropriate anger and David was not allowed to have inappropriate anger. So number three was inappropriate anger. She was doing aggression, bullying, the silent treatment, suppression and passive aggressive, the sarcasm. Number four abuse tactics. Several abusive methods surface, such as twisting the truth, gas lighting, verbal assaults, physical aggression or even gilt tripping. These are all very unhealthy indications leaders that Stephanie would use, that Stephanie would escalate. Given the right time, motivation and environment.

Any indicator of abuse is that bad sign and a relationship and should be taken seriously. Let me say that again for you. Any indicator of abuse is a bad sign in a relationship and should be taken seriously. Number four were Stephanie's use of abuse tactics. Number five gossip talk. Stephanie had a habit of sharing secrets with David about her friends and Co workers where there was a clear breach of confidentiality on her part. Unfortunately, how Stephanie spoke about others was an indication of how she would speak about David in the future. There were times when David wondered how much of his personal information was the topic of conversation with her friends and her family. So David saw that she gossiped about other people and then he became concerned that she was going to do it...

...about him, if she hadn't already started doing it. So number five is gossip talk. Number six one way communication. David did most of the work maintaining the relationship. Stephanie did not reach out as often as David did in texting, phone calls and recommendations of dates. By contrast, conversation seemed to be waited in Stephanie's direction, with little discussion about the things that actually matter to David. Stephanie wanted help with her stuff, but wasn't present for David when he needed a friendly ear. So number six is this one way communication where it's more about Stephanie was taking and David was giving, and there wasn't a reciprocal where Stephanie was actually giving and David was allowed to take. Number seven, no responsibility. When there was a problem, Stephanie refused to admit...

...doing anything wrong and instead blame things on David, her friends and Co workers. She also displayed a lack of empathy for hurting David's feelings and discounted the needed for an apology. Yet she insisted that David apologize for things that were outside of his responsibility. So number seven is Stephanie refusing to admit responsibility and instead casting blame onto David. Number eight controlling tendencies. Stephanie would tell David what to do and how to do it. If David resisted, Stephanie would become angry when things weren't done the way she instructed. There was little to no understanding of differences and temperament, personality, preferences or circumstances. So number eight, Stephanie had some controlling tendencies of trying to get David to do things...

...her way. Number Nine, absolute agreement. There was no allowance for differing opinions. For Stephanie, she insisted that David agree with her one hundred percent of the time on sensitive topics such as religion or politics, in order to maintain the peace in their relationship. Any deviation was seen by Stephanie as a personal betrayal. So for number nine, Stephanie demanded an absolute agreement on issues for which there is a lot of personal preference, and there was no room for them to be able to say we agree to disagree. That was not possible in Stephanie's world. Number ten, dichotomis expressions. There were only two options that Stephanie would give to David. Unfortunately, both selections tended to be exaggerated extremes with no real practical choice ways. It was presented as black and...

...white versions with no compromising gray areas. There was a right way, usually Stephanie's, and a wrong way, usually David's. So the last issue that was very concerning to David was this dichotomis expressions, where there was only two extreme choices being offered. Okay, let's review the ten again. Number one, transferring risk. Stephanie transferring risk and to David number two, constant victimization. That's Stephanie is the victim and David is not, or other people are the ones that are causing her problems. Number three, inappropriate anger. This includes raging anger outbursts, even the silent treatment. Number four, abusive tactics. Stephanie was using several abusive tactics. Number five, gossip talk. So Stephanie Is Gossiping About Other People and subsequently about David. Number six, there's...

...one way communication, where David was doing all the work of maintaining the relationship. Number seven, no responsibility. Stephanie wasn't accepting any responsibility for her actions or behavior. Number eight, controlling tendencies. Stephanie would tell David what to do and how to do it. Number Nine, absolute agreement. There was no other alternative but to agree with her a hundred percent. And number ten, dichotomis expressions. There was exaggerated extremes that were being offered, with no real practical choice in between. So, after reviewing these ten items, David decided that it was time that he leaves the relationship. He recognized that the relationship had become an unsafe environment where he was likely to get burned and hurt. If you are trying to make the decision between whether you should stay or...

...whether you should go, check for these ten what I would call huge red flags in your relationship. Even one of them can be problematic. I hope that helps the answer that question for you and look forward to talking to you next time by thanks for listening to understanding. Today's narcissist with Christine hand brought to you in part by Psych Central dotcom. For more information, visit grow with Christine dotcom.

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