Don't be fooled by the lavish dates: This dream guy might turn out to be a nightmare.
If anyone caught Tuesday night's episode of The Bachelor, it was almost better than watching a train wreck. Don't ask me why I was watching it, but I'm glad I did — because it inspired me to write this blog. If you missed it, here's the recap that had Twitter blowing up:
Andi, a bright and beautiful lawyer who remained in Juan Pablo's final three as his potential bride to-be, had her overnight date in their fantasy suite. She suddenly had an epiphany that Juan Pablo hadn't asked her any questions about herself, didn't even know her religion or what city she grew up in, yet he was already talking about marriage and raising children with her. (Go Andi)!
When she confronted him with her concern his reaction was nothing more than, "OK, fine." She was pretty speechless by his underwhelming reaction, and continued to ask him, "That's all you're gonna say? Just 'OK, fine?'" Just 24 hours after he practically confessed his love to her, all he could say was "Okay, fine."
She hoped he would fight for her. Say sorry. Try to win her back or tell her she was wrong. But instead, he was ready to let her go and move on to the others.
Does this sound familiar to you? Have you ever expected your lover to fight for you, beg you not to leave, or say sorry, but really had nothing to say at all? And you are practically waving your arms in the air, wondering what happened, trying to grab his attention for the slightest bit of compassion? As we saw on The Bachelor, Andi didn't get her deserved empathy and if you're dealing with a narcissist, neither will you.
Loving a narcissist is a thrill ride. He will give you the fairy tale relationship you’ve always dreamed of. He will take you to Europe, shower you with gifts, invite you into his big house, all while escorting you in his very nice car. He will make you feel so incredibly significant, more so than anyone you've ever met. Narcissists love to put on a good show. And they love to talk about themselves. Sounds familiar, when we think about JP's extravagant dates, right?
But the truth is: A narcissist is writing a script to the life he wants, not what he has. He can only hold on to this fairy tale for so long. After all, being someone he's not is exhausting. If he doesn't move on before you do, you will catch on to his narcissistic ways. You may confront him (like Andi did), and expect him to be empathetic to your wishes. Instead, he gives you very little reaction or worse, he puts you down and insults you for being so needy.
And thus, you find yourself in the lonely wake of loving a narcissist. It's incredibly confusing to once receive lavish gifts and poetic words of love, to getting zero emotion once he has moved on. And this can happen overnight, as we saw with Andi. Thank goodness she found out early on in the relationship. Unfortunately, others aren't so lucky.
The good news is that there is a wealth of information on how to spot a narcissist and heal yourself from loving one. I know this because I was a victim of a narcissist — more than one, actually. Through lots of work, I learned that my co-dependency of others became a narcissistic magnet. Co-dependents like to "fix" everything. We spend our entire lives accommodating others. We are taught to take the blame or justify odd behavior and, oh yeah, we accept negative behavior for a really long time. How perfect is this environment for a narcissist? We're a match made in heaven!
But know this: You will never, ever change your narcissistic lover. And you will never get the empathy you want from him. Only YOU can change. And co-dependency is fixable. It's all about knowledge and awareness, and finding the resources to help you.
How have you been a victim of a narcissist? Share your thoughts below, or send me an email! I would love to hear from you.
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