It’s Narcissist Friday!
The holidays are winding down and people in relationship with narcissists are settling back to whatever passes for normal life. The spouse/parent/friend/co-worker/sibling narcissist has been himself/herself.
I hope you had a great holiday! I hope that your narcissist was reasonable and got along well with others and you. But if that didn’t happen, if you are still stressed, here are some thoughts.
- Survival is Victory – You thought the situation would be terrible. Maybe it was, but you survived. You thought your heart would break, but it didn’t. You thought you wouldn’t be able to stand it again, but you did. You survived. Good for you! I call that a victory.
- That which does not kill you makes you stronger – Okay, I don’t believe that in every case, but you will find yourself stronger in the days to come. You learned some things and you will understand them as you sort them out over time. And you are seeing yourself in a new light. You are not the defeated victim that you used to be.
- Be kind to yourself – You are probably exhausted. The holidays do that themselves, but narcissists can be especially trying during holidays. Stress comes with a price. Give yourself a break. Understand why you are drained.
- Forgive yourself – You may replay the situation in your mind now and think of things you could have said or done. That’s normal and it is normal to feel a little frustrated that you didn’t do those things. But let it go. You can’t hold yourself accountable for errors or omissions while you are under that kind of stress. And, you know, it might have just made things worse.
- Forgive the narcissist – I might get hate email on this one, but remember that forgiveness is for you. You cannot spend hours and days reliving the offenses. You probably won’t forget, but you have to let yourself move on. Nor do you have to open yourself to the narcissist again. Forgiveness is not about making yourself more vulnerable or trying to forget what was done. Forgiveness is about your decision not to hold onto the offense and give it continuing power in your life.
- Move into the future – Things are changing. You are more aware than you were. You are learning how to handle some of the things he/she does. You are getting stronger. You are beginning to see yourself as a separate person, a person of value. All of that is good. This year will not be like last year.
- There is hope – There is always hope. Pray and seek the Lord. Let Him love you. Let Him be your strength and your joy. Find life apart from the pain. Our hope is in the Lord. He can do anything.