When the confusion lifts, we wonder why we had to wait this long in our lives to understand.
During quarantine, for whatever reason, Dr. Ramani Durvasula came on my YouTube feed as one of the suggested watches. I watched one episode and then another in literal shock and awe. What I had been experiencing was not my imagination.
Narcissism is a thing. I thought it meant that the person thought they looked attractive and wanted validation from everyone, but no—it is much more complicated than that.
So why did I win the jackpot in this area of life? I blamed myself on so many levels.
Yes, none of us are perfect—everyone deserves some of the blame to a degree. But the relationship trap between an empath and narcissist is so subtle (especially to the outside observer), and such a mind f*ck to the person experiencing it. They become completely convinced or talked out of their own reality; they take on the reality of the person defining the terms of their life.
In addition, because the empath feels all the feels of the person defining their reality, they have trouble identifying what their actual feelings are—and what they are not. I remember, as a child, people saying, “Put yourself in someone else’s shoes.” I already did that to such a degree that I couldn’t tell which were my shoes and which were theirs!
Not only that, these kinds of manipulators graduated from the virtual school of Mind F*ck and have PhDs in this field. (No, seriously though.)
Red, flashing lights will continue going off until we are a big, depressed, mess of a human with chronic illness, few people we trust, and extreme social anxiety. (Strangely enough, YouTube and TikTok have made me realize there is an entire community of us who understand.)
I do not think we can ever fully cut out everyone with these tendencies—the world is filled with them. Instead, we have to empower ourselves; we have to understand and learn how to react, and energetically shield and empower others. The world needs empathy and empaths!
With a narcissist, there is always a lingering feeling that we aren’t enough. If they have a brunette, they like blondes; if they have a blonde, they like Asians. I imagine if you were to try and talk about the different love languages when it comes to intimacy, they would reply something about how we should accept them as they are.
And then you might feel bad mentioning these things because you feel like a “bean counter.” Empaths aren’t bean counters by nature; we just want to know we are heard. (Until now, I didn’t realize this task’s impossibility.)
While you may never win an argument, you can equip yourself with sound advice and understanding that the words a narcissist speaks should not be absorbed personally. For me, that was huge.
They are charming; they are successful; they are competent in the world. They’ll probably say things like, “It was a joke; you shouldn’t take it so personally.” Mean-nice people are so confusing!
I am finally aware of what’s going on. It’s like I’ve been duped in my own movie. Like the cosmic joke has a punchline I wasn’t expecting. I know that we will always be connected to these characters in our life movie. We love them, but we have to set up energetic boundaries.
Buy every crystal from here to the moon, speak to every psychic, and ask yourself: How can I heal once this new knowledge is in place? Day by day, little by little, prayer by prayer?
I’ve repeatedly read that empaths are magnets for people with Narcissistic Personality Disorder (NPD), but what does this mean practically and spiritually?
I’m in the process of healing on this front, having gone through the fight-or-flight (or freeze) mechanism so many times. I could write a manual for chronic depression and the aftermath of gaslighting on the body and psyche.
In my case, it looked like repeated chronic sinus infections and a 40-pound weight gain that had nothing to do with not exercising. All I can intuitively understand is that my body needed this armor.
These experiences’ social ramifications are endless, but here are a few:
The narcissists in your life will publicly and privately define your story—your “truth”—and society, even you, will latch on to that. This stigma is incredibly challenging to break.
You might develop the desire to shield yourself physically, emotionally, and energetically from people. You might think you deserve the “public stoning” treatment.
We all have to find what works for us, but I found an arsenal of practical and ooga-booga techniques to overcome and heal in my case.
Practically speaking, here are a few:
>> Listen to Dr. Ramani’s series on the Narcissist/Empath relationship on YouTube.
It gives you insight, validation, and practical tools. Knowledge is power. Listening to her was life-changing for me.
>> Do not expect an apology from a narcissist, whether it’s a parent, friend, or partner.
Or, if they do, do not expect them to remedy their hurtful words publicly.
>> Find new friends.
There’s an entire community of people who will understand you without you having to say a word. Embrace your tribe.
On a spiritual, ooga-booga front, there’s an array of reiki on YouTube. I listened endlessly to raise my vibration. They vary, so follow your intuition about what’s right for you.
I personally love the Archangel Michael YouTube channel. Envisioning that I had an energetic shield blocking negative energy while protecting and guiding was comforting and nourishing.
>> Use your affirmations daily!
I am love. I am light. I’m an instrument of divine love. I am powerful. I am healing. I am successful.
ASMR reiki with Anna is also deeply helpful on our sleepless nights.
>> While it might seem impossible to laugh at times, find ways.
I’m one of those people who joined TikTok as a request to follow my son’s music, and I got hooked. And let me tell you, people are funny! Our ability to see our experiences as a comic tragedy is priceless. They say the greatest comedians have experienced the greatest pain, and that’s no lie.
Once you have and understand NPD’s terms (gaslighting, love bombing, and more), you no longer take it personally.
Remember, it’s not your fault! And what we’re healing in ourselves, we’re healing in the world. We’re at the pinnacle of overcoming these same tendencies in our societies worldwide.
Sending love on your healing journey—you’re not alone.
Personally, I have a tribe now. And I have my pen as my sword and shield. And remember: you are not weak because you’ve faced narcissistic abuse—you’re a superhero. You wear a cape nobody can see and have scars nobody can feel.
Your mind can hold on to your truth in tough circumstances—even when your truth is constantly being battered. You’re holding on to your sanity under circumstances that nobody can understand. You’ve cried rivers not out of weakness, but so they can reach the sea. Your empathy is needed in this world.
I will help and listen to anyone who relates to this experience and needs support. I am sending love and shielding power to my empathic tribe. So take all those times when your voice was silenced—when you weren’t heard, and you hit your head on the same wall over and over—straighten your superhero cape, look in the mirror, and know that you are love. That’s your superpower. Use it for those who need it the most, and please put your oxygen mask on first before helping others. Have a pleasant flight, my loves.