You cannot plan, prepare, or manage your way out of box with someone who is manipulative, controlling, self-centered, and abusive.
The potential threat of an outburst will occur. Victims know this. These outbursts and horrible treatment of others (which of course includes you) will have consequences all the way around.
There are glaring red flags. In the end, you will deplete your energy, your capacity for joy, and your ability to see things clearly; as they are happening.
It is as if you become a pawn in this game that is a lose – lose. Your sense of who you are slowly begins to fade.
When you clear the distortions from your thinking, you realize that all the running around, worry, endless anxiety and fear of the narcissist and his/her potential blow-ups is permeating your inner world.
If you are in a relationship with a narcissist who is controlling, manipulative, and dismissive of your deeply held wants and needs then the following would be some clear indicators that warrant further discernment and more clarity in perspective.
- Does the victim find her/him self defending the actions of the narcissist to family, friends, and/or neighbors?
- Does the victim appear to acquiesce to the demands of the narcissist without assertion or a sense of control over her or his own decision-making?
- Does the victim second-guess herself on a consistent basis and feel a need to check and double-check all decisions with the narcissist?
- Is there an increased level of anxiety, jumpiness, rumination, and nervous energy permeating the victim?
- Does the victim attempt to anticipate the feelings, needs, and wants of the narcissist because of the unpredictability of his/her actions?
- Does the victim become increasingly more jealous and make repeated attempts to control or alter behavior in the narcissist that is quite frankly uncontrollable (drinking, flirting, work-status, cheating, gambling, etc.)?
The effort, anxiety, worry, and overall stress layered onto the victim over and over in the relationship get heavier and thicker as time passes.
All that chaos, fake charm, and the glittery façade of the narcissistic abuser fades over time. It begins to wear thin. People start to see through the faded shine. This is when you find yourself desperately trying to prevent, control, and mitigate the inevitable consequences of years of abuse. You feel alone and isolated.
Change and a new way of regarding yourself is possible. One small step at a time.