What You Need To Know About Narcissists: Why Cartwheels In Bed & Circusworthy Stunts Won’t Matter
You taught me what true love is all about. I will forever be yours. Because of you, I now know what it’s like to be treated like a queen. I love you.
“It won’t matter if you turned cartwheels in bed for him and performed circus-worthy stunts”Serena Prince
The last time my husband of 18 years tried to kill me, he almost succeeded. I knew if I didn’t get out, I may not be so lucky the next time. And there would definitely be a next time.
When the opportunity presented itself, my son and I made our escape. We left with nothing but the clothes on our backs and ran like hell.
For almost four months, we moved from hotel to hotel, never staying in one place for more than 3 days at a time. Although I had pressed charges, my husband went on the run before he could be arrested.
I knew he would still be looking for me. And that he wouldn’t give up until he found me. He wasn’t finished destroying me.
Colton and I lived in constant fear. Because his principal knew about our situation, she agreed it was too risky for him to attend school. So we stayed as isolated as possible from the outside world. And prayed the police would find my husband before he found us.
During that time, I began searching for answers. I wanted an explanation for what had happened to my life. There had to be a reason the man I married had turned into a monster.
I discovered Quora and began to learn about Narcissistic Personality Disorder and Narcissistic Abuse. For months, I educated myself by reading Quora Answers and countless books about Narcissists. I devoured all the information I could get my hands on.
Then I read it all again.
I finally began to understand why my life had become a living hell. My husband was a Malignant Narcissist. He hadn’t turned into a monster. He’d been one all along. He was just pretending to be human.
I also came to the realization that I’d been in nothing but toxic relationships my entire life. For some reason, I was a magnet for narcissistic people. That would have to change.
I began focusing on healing from within, which was a totally foreign concept for me, but I knew it had to be done. Colton and I went to a psychiatrist and were diagnosed with Narcissistic Victim Syndrome and C-PTSD (Complex- Post Traumatic Stress Disorder).
To say it was hard to heal is an understatement, but we gradually began rebuilding our shattered lives. We moved to an apartment in a gated community, and told no one where we lived.
Eventually, I started answering questions on Quora. After all those months of research and all the years of enduring Narcissistic Abuse, I felt uniquely qualified. I began communicating with other Survivors all around the world and became an Advocate for Victims of Narcissistic Abuse.
I started my own blog and wrote about my experiences. I also joined Instagram and started posting daily. From the depths of despair, a new career was borne.
Narcissistic Abuse has become a global epidemic. Every country in the world is affected by it. Unfortunately, there aren’t enough qualified mental health professionals trained to help the vast number of victims.
The need for answers and awareness grows daily. I believe knowledge is power. If you don’t know what you’re dealing with, you can’t protect yourself from Narcissists.
I survived 18 years of marriage to an abusive, sadistic Malignant Narcissist and learned some very painful lessons. With the knowledge I’ve gained, it’s my hope to educate people about the true motives of Narcissists.
The answers I write on Quora are based on my own experiences and extensive research. They’re pretty straightforward, and aren’t meant to cause anyone more pain. But sometimes the truth is harsh. However, it would serve no purpose to mince words.
This book is a compilation of some of my Quora answers to questions about Narcissists. They were asked by real people, in real situations. People who were desperately seeking answers.
Whether you’re beginning to learn about Narcissism, or just need a reminder of why you should maintain No Contact, I hope you’ll find these answers helpful.
This book never would have been possible if not for Quora, and the wonderful people who continue to provide the best question-and-answer platform on the Internet.
Before I ever considered the possibility of one day being a Quora Author myself, I was lost with no direction. When I discovered Quora, I found a source for the knowledge I needed. The answers I’d searched for were finally at my fingertips.
The stories of other Survivors of Narcissistic Abuse, and the compassionate Quorans who wrote them, helped to restore my sanity. For that, I will always be grateful.
To the House Of Saud and the Crown Prince of Saudi Arabia, Mohammad bin Salman, thank you for helping to Raise Awareness of Narcissistic Abuse.
To my crazy swanky friend, Sailor Holiday, this book probably would have never gotten started, if not for your encouragement and enthusiasm. You were there from the beginning, and you will be there always. I love and appreciate you.
Oh yeah, Erma sends her regards to Bunny and Fifi.
To my son, Colton, we’ve been through so much together. We’re survivors, you and I. Thank you for your patience, love, and support. I love you with all my heart.
Long before I knew about Narcissists and Narcissistic Personality Disorder, I was aware that I was living with someone with a very serious problem.
It had become my very serious problem. Because the person I lived with was my husband. And because it was causing dire consequences for me. For my physical, mental, and emotional wellbeing. For my self-esteem. For my very identity.
He had become extremely abusive in every way, and controlled every aspect of my life. What I did. Where I went. What clothes I wore. Everything. Including my thoughts.
It had gotten to a point that I did nothing without first considering what his reaction would be. If I wanted to go see my family, I thought about how he would react. If there was any possibility of angering him, I chose not to see my family.
As crazy as it sounds, seeing them wasn’t worth the risk of angering my husband. Too many times, I’d seen his anger. Too many times, I’d been the target of his rage, and the results were always bad. For me, at any rate.
Several times over the years, I tried to get out of the marriage. I’d either leave or kick him out. Then I’d file for divorce and attempt to rebuild my life.
Each time, he’d come to me with declarations of love and promises to change. I would once again see the man I had married, the charming man I fell in love with.
The monster never made appearances during the hoover attempts, and the man I married could always convince me to give him another chance.
What can I say? I didn’t know he was wearing a mask every time. Plus we had a child, an autistic son. I mistakenly believed he needed his father.
So we would reconcile and things would be better for a while. But they always ended up getting worse. Much worse. Over time, this pattern of separating and reconciling became all too familiar.
It was taking its toll on both my child and me. I had become a shell of my former self. Someone who was alive, but who wasn’t living. Colton lived in constant fear of what his father would do to me next. He had seen things no child should see.
So why didn’t I just leave? If things had deteriorated that much, why was I still with him? Why did I stay with someone who abused me and terrorized our child?
The answers to those questions can be found in this book. For a long time, I didn’t understand it myself. Once I learned about Narcissistic Abuse and psychopathy, I finally understood what had happened to me. And why.
Surviving Narcissistic Abuse is the most difficult thing I’ve ever faced. And I don’t say that lightly. I’ve lost a child, a parent, and endured many extreme hardships in my life. As painful as those things were, they were still not as difficult to overcome as Narcissistic Abuse.
To be clear, I didn’t marry a monster. When we met, he was funny, sweet, and charming. A breath of fresh air for me at the time.
I’d just gone through a very ugly divorce, and was still in the midst of a bitter custody fight. I needed a friend. And he became exactly what I needed. The balm for my wounded soul.
Back then, I wasn’t aware that I’d just divorced a Covert Narcissist. I had no way of knowing I was going from bad to worse. But that’s exactly what I did. I traded up to what I now know to be a Malignant Narcissist.
I thought my previous marriage had been hell. Little did I know there are various levels of hell. And that I was going to be taken to each and every level.
Why Can’t You Ever Win An Argument With A Narcissist?
When normal people get into arguments, they’re attempting to resolve some type of issue or conflict. Narcissists argue to create even more conflict.
When the inevitable boredom that constantly plagues a narcissist sets in, they lure you into circular conversations to entertain themselves. Just like everything else, conversations are competitions to a narcissist.
Their strategy is to constantly change the rules to cause you to become unhinged. The goal is to make you so frustrated that you eventually lash out. Once you’ve lost your patience and show your temper, they’ve won the game.
This was their intention all along: to create enough drama and chaos that you’re forced to react. You become so unsettled that you have a normal human reaction. However, you’ll be accused of being difficult and having anger issues.
Later, you’ll rehash the conversation in your mind and feel bad for overreacting. By questioning your own good nature, the narcissist has made you wonder if you’re the crazy one.
You’ll ask yourself why you’re overly sensitive, and what’s made you so paranoid. Thus, one more layer of your self-esteem has been whittled away.
Not only did the narcissist drain your energy with the relentless tossing of word salad, now he’s continuing to erode your identity by causing you to doubt yourself.
Another victory for the narcissist.
When A Narcissist Slanders Someone, Is It Because Of Envy?
A Narcissist begins what’s known as a smear campaign long before the victim becomes aware of it. It’s for future damage control – a way for him to control the amount of damage he’s able to inflict.
Granted, a narcissist will slander anyone, and envy, of normal people with normal emotions, is something that lives within a narcissist. However, it’s mostly subconscious, and it’s not the reason for the smear campaign.
In a relationship with a narcissist, there are three stages: Idealization, Devaluation, and Discard.
The smear campaign, unbeknownst to the victim, actually begins during Idealization. The narcissist is setting a trap for the ending of the relationship.
He’ll use it to cause even more damage to the victim during the Discard stage. It will also be a tool for when he’s grooming his next target.
In the beginning of a narcissistic relationship, you are happy. You tell everyone how wonderful he is. You brag about his greatness to your family and friends. He treats you like a queen, and everything is fabulous.
When the inevitable devaluation begins, you desperately try to bring back the glory of the early days. You believe if you try hard enough, you can restore the bliss.
You don’t tell anybody that Mr. Wonderful has been treating you like shit. You don’t yet know the relationship is going to end. Naturally, you don’t want people thinking bad about the person you plan to spend the rest of your life with.
You suffer in silence. You don’t tell anybody about the mind games and his frequent, unexplained absences. You never mention the devastating triangulation to anyone.
When it gets to be overwhelming, you finally react. You send angry text messages, demanding answers. You complain about the horrible way he’s treating you.
When he doesn’t respond, you send more messages, even angrier this time. Later, he uses those messages to prove to people that you’re unstable and jealous.
You become the crazy ex to his latest target, the one he’s grooming as your replacement. Although he’s still living with you, she doesn’t know that.
When the narcissist does discard you, no one blames him. He’s already shown people that you’re crazy and difficult, using your own words.
Now you’re alone, heartbroken, and miserable. You desperately need to talk to someone about what you’ve been through, so you reach out.
You’re stunned when you tell people about the way he really treated you, and nobody believes you. That’s because you unwittingly fell into his trap.
Now he can happily flaunt his new girlfriend, and you look like a bitter woman scorned. People see you as being vindictive.
They think you’re just starting negative rumors about him because you can’t take rejection. After all, you’re the one who told everyone for months how great he was.
How Do Narcissists Discard Their Partners?
In a way that is sure to inflict maximum damage. Let me offer a scenario:
Things have been going surprisingly well between you and the Narcissist lately. You spent all afternoon in bed together. He was constantly telling you how much he loves you, and reminding you why you fell in love with him to begin with.
Not only that. It was almost like it used to be. He made you feel his love by looking deeply into your eyes and kissing you softly.
You didn’t just have sex. You made beautiful, sweet love, and it was absolutely wonderful. You’re so happy that you can’t stop smiling.
You keep looking at him. Touching him. Adoring him. Loving him so much.
Then you sense him staring at you. You look over at him, and see a very odd expression on his face. He’s got a maniacal look in his eyes. And the creepiest smile you’ve ever seen.
Chills run through your body. You barely recognize the man beside you.
When he offers to go pick up something to eat, you quickly agree. Because now, you really need a few minutes to yourself.
Before he leaves, he hugs you for a long moment and things feel okay again. You tell yourself that your imagination has run amok.
So you relax a bit. You even start to feel guilty for doubting him. You relive the magic in your mind while you wait for him to return, lazily drifting off to sleep.
When you wake up, you’re shocked to realize you’d been asleep for three hours. You search the house, but he is nowhere to be found. You look outside. His car isn’t in the driveway.
Where was he? He never made it back!
In a near-panic, you grab your phone and call him. No answer. You text him and pray for a quick response.
But you don’t get a quick response. You don’t get any response.
You continue to call his phone throughout the night, to no avail. You start calling everybody who might have any idea of where he is. Nobody answers your calls. Nobody responds to your texts.
At first, you’re in shock. You don’t know what to think. On one hand, you feel like you’ll die if you don’t find out something. On the other, you’re scared to find out.
What if he was in a car wreck? So you call the hospitals to see if he’s been admitted. Nothing.
You start to think about the times he would disappear after a fight.
And when he said he would be home from hunting after daylight. But it was after daylight two days later before he actually showed up.
Memories come flooding back. So many times you knew he was lying, and you let him get away with it. A sick feeling floods through you.
The truth starts to painfully reveal itself. He’s not coming back!!
And he doesn’t. He seems to have disappeared from the face of the earth. You never get a single message from him. Not one phone call.
Then a few days later, the phone finally rings. But it’s not him. It’s a Flying Monkey. He tells you he saw a picture of the narc and another woman on Facebook. They were announcing their new relationship.
Maximum amount of damage inflicted.
Are Many Victims Of Narcissistic Abuse Ahead Of Psychologists In Knowledge Of Narcissistic Personality Disorder?
Absolutely. Unfortunately, in order to fully understand narcissistic abuse, a person has to first experience it.
Understanding the concept on an intellectual level is one thing. In my opinion, it’s akin to dropping out of high school in the 11th grade. You learned a lot, and you have pretty basic knowledge, but your education is still incomplete.
When I first sought help to heal after being diagnosed with Narcissistic Abuse Syndrome and Complex-PTSD, I was shocked to discover the lack of qualified mental health professionals.
Plenty of people claimed to be qualified. But to be perfectly honest, they were freaking clueless. Hell, I knew far more about the subject than the so-called experts I encountered.
I got the impression that their education had been limited to reading a few articles about NPD from a psychology journal and nothing more. Sadly, every counselor I went to had no more knowledge about narcissistic abuse than my dog. And she died last year.
I’m not trying to make light of a very serious problem. I’m simply trying to make a point. Mental health professionals who claim to be qualified to treat victims of narcissistic abuse, but are very much unqualified, do even more damage to victims!!
Some type of reform needs to be enacted in order to stop this problem from continuing. As an Author on Quora, I’ve had the enormous privilege of communicating with survivors from around the world.
Narcissistic Abuse knows no race, religion, social status, gender, or nationality. It affects people from all walks of life. You’d think that alone would be reason enough for countries to get serious about combating this epidemic.
With the exception of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, most countries leave it to survivors to spread awareness. Thanks to their progressive leader, the people of Saudi Arabia have access to as much information about narcissists as I can throw their way.
Obviously knowledge alone is not enough. Until the leaders of every country in the world realize the importance of addressing this epidemic, victims will continue to suffer.
How Hard Is It Really To Go No Contact?
It’s very hard to go No Contact once your relationship with a narcissist ends. But it is very much worth it for many reasons. Not the least of which is saving your health, sanity, and possibly your life.
The longer you’ve been in a relationship with a narcissist, the harder it is to maintain absolutely no contact. However, it’s no more difficult than continuing to live in hell.
Plus, you have everything to gain by enduring the inevitable pain, confusion, sadness, and heartache that you face. Staying in the relationship is guaranteed to bring nothing but more pain and loss.
By knowing in advance that you will have to be stronger than you’ve ever been to get through the initial torture of No Contact, you can prepare yourself mentally. I recommend educating yourself as much as possible about the initial withdrawal that you will face.
Since you have been conditioned to walk on eggshells around the narcissist, your body adapted by producing more cortisol. This is the hormone triggered by stress. Constantly being in fight-or-flight mode is the reason for this happening.
You’ve also become addicted to the mean-sweet cycle that has been a way of life with the narcissist. Your mind will play tricks on you. You will vacillate between hating the narc and missing him desperately.
You may start to think things weren’t so bad and want to return to what is familiar to you. Don’t let that happen!! If you leave and then return, the nightmare gets much worse.
The narcissist will punish you for daring to leave.
Why Won’t A Narcissist Have A Conversation About What The Connection With The Person He Triangulated Me With Meant To Him?
It’s An Easy Way To Get Rid Of Me. Does It Mean He Loves Her?
Because he’s able to torture you effortlessly by not telling you what you want to know. And because he’s not ready to get rid of you.
He’s having too much fun seeing what you’re doing to yourself. It makes him feel powerful to control your feelings. It proves his superiority. You are giving him premium supply by tearing yourself apart.
Besides, he is either still seeing the person he triangulated you with, or has moved on to the next person he’s planning to torture you with.
It won’t matter who the person is, male or female, a narcissist is not capable of love. Their brains never formed the capability. Sadly, that includes you.
*Author’s Note: This is my most popular Quora answer. It’s also the inspiration for this book’s subtitle.
Will A Narcissist Discard His New Supply If He Feels His Old Supply Was A Better Lover In The Bedroom?
What I’m about to say is going to be brutally honest, but please know it is not my intent to cause you more pain.
It won’t matter if you turned cartwheels in bed for him and performed circusworthy stunts.
He’s probably told you that you’re the best thing in bed he’s ever had, and the new supply can’t even give a blow job. Whatever he told you is the same thing he’s telling all the others.
Lies. All lies.
He may return to you again for sex. But he’ll never be faithful to anyone. He wasn’t faithful to you throughout your relationship, whether you knew it or not. Good luck to you.
What Are Some Tactics Of A Covert Narcissist That Go Undetected?
Here’s one example:
You’ve been looking forward to seeing an old high school friend who is in town on business. All week, the two of you gabbed on the phone about old times, and made plans to have a Girl’s Night Out.
You wake up that morning to someone ringing the doorbell nonstop, which immediately makes you both angry and jumpy. When you get to the door you are furious when you see it’s the Covert Narcissist.
He had been aware of your plans all week, and knew you were really looking forward to spending time with your friend. So why was he at your door?
Especially after you told him the night before that you wouldn’t be able to see him today. Reluctantly, you open the door and he steps inside.
You’re thinking he must have a specific reason for being there so you impatiently wait for him to enlighten you. Instead, he plops down on your sofa, picks up the remote control, and begins to channel-surf.
Annoyed, you retreat to your bedroom and continue to get ready for your upcoming visit. A few minutes later, you hear noises from the living room that sound like movement, which you assume is the narc making himself at home.
A figure suddenly appears in your peripheral vision and you see the narc hovering over you. He announces that he has to get going and will be in an area with bad cell phone reception.
Surprised and relieved, you wonder why the hell he even came by at all. Shortly after the narc leaves, you realize that you haven’t seen your phone in a while.
As you begin to look for your cell, you notice a stain on the new dress you bought for this night. A stain that wasn’t there earlier.
Becoming more and more agitated, you resume the search for your missing phone. After failing to locate the phone inside the house, you wonder if somehow you left it in the car.
When you look in the same spot where you always hang your keys, you’re baffled to find that they’re not there. Now you have no phone, so you can’t call your friend. You have no keys, so you can’t go anywhere.
You’re pissed about the dress, but you have more to focus on now. Now what?
You still can’t make a call. You still can’t go anywhere. Your only neighbor is out of town for a wedding. You’re stuck.
You spend the rest of the day fuming. You tear your house apart several times looking for your phone and keys, but find neither. You feel terrible about standing your friend up. You’re so frustrated you want to cry.
Miserable, you spend a restless night, tossing and turning in bed. Once again the next morning, the annoying sound of the doorbell ringing nonstop awakens you.
Once again, the Covert Narcissist is at your door. This morning, though, he’s smiling as he hands you both your phone and keys. And tells you he just found them both on the hood of your car.
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About The Author
Serena Prince is CEO of Serena Prince-375 Media sand Director of Business Development for SEOsiri. She is a Writer/Blogger, Digital Content Creator, Humorist, Life Coach, and Social Media Influencer.
A Survivor of Narcissistic Abuse, Serena writes regularly about her personal experiences with the hope of Raising Awareness and Understanding.
She is an Advocate for victims and recently co-founded Global Advocates For Survivors Of Narcissistic Abuse with the Crown Prince of Saudi Arabia, Mohammad bin Salman.