5 Things to Expect When You Break Up With The Narcissist

Similar to stages of grief, there are stages to a break up with a narcissist too.

These stages are things you need to expect – and they ring true for pretty much everyone who leaves a narcissist.

As much as you’d love to close the door, wake up to a new dawn and start again – leaving a narcissist doesn’t quite give you that peace – certainly not initially!

Narcissists leave an imprint on us for quite a long time, even though we never asked for it. The energy from their inflated ego overstays its welcome even after a breakup.

So, what five things can you expect when you break up with a narcissist?

#1 Absolutely No Closure

Not being able to sign off this toxic chapter with a relieved heart is going to push you to your limits if you aren’t careful.

Narcissists aren’t looking for closure if you break up with them – they’re looking for revenge. 

Flying monkeys and smear campaigns are going to be top of their list. They will recruit people you both know and tell you you’re crazy. They will say how much they loved and cared for you. That you hurt them. 

Even that you were the narcissist!

Narcissists are unwilling to let go until they come out winning because they’re that entitled. Expect people you know and are maybe even close to to slowly but surely start backing off, crossing the street when they see you or canceling plans they had with you. 

All off the back of hearing the narcissist’s lies about you.

They Secretly Hurt

The narcissist does this because they’re hurt, but because they can’t regulate their emotions – it comes out as anger. Even resentment.

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Yes – you unwillingly draw the short straw. 

If you share children or assets – it’ll be even worse. Expect fights, even lawsuits – and they won’t give up.

All of this means you don’t get the closure you crave. You’re already emotionally drained from the entire experience, and you have to stomach more misery from the petulant actions of the narcissist. 

#2 Someone Old… Someone New

You may be going to be faced with a new face sooner rather than later where the narcissist is concerned.

Remember – you break up with them and take your supply. What will they do without you around to pick on or control? 

Find another victim!

This is exactly why narcissists work so fast to fill the gap you left when you walked away. They may even have somebody else lined up before you go, almost like a back up. 

Whether it be hours, days or weeks – the narcissist is not going to let their ego sit unstroked for long. It’s beyond a need for them – it’s almost an obsession. If someone new can replace you, then they don’t have to worry about losing what you provided for them (to your detriment).

#3 You Blame Yourself

Could this relationship have been any different?

What could I have done to prevent this outcome?

Was it me? 

Did I cause this?

No, nothing, no and no.

Even though I am telling you it wasn’t your fault, you’ll still think it is for a while. You have to reiterate to yourself that you have been given a lot of time and energy to control yourself. 

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In small ways yes, and also in larger ways. There will have been days you wouldn’t have even noticed the narcissist gaslighting you, or making you feel bad for something you haven’t done. All this time has gone by and here you are, questioning yourself.

You’ve been conditioned to question yourself. Even now, after walking away from the relationship, you still think of ways to blame yourself, but this isn’t your responsibility.

The narcissist knows exactly what they’re doing. They did it before you, and they will do it after you. Getting caught up in their behavior even after you’ve broken up with them will make you turn inward and hold onto that blame.

The narcissist will do that to you.

#4 Rumination is Real

You’re lying awake at 3am without so much as a wink of sleep.

Did you do the right thing?

Should you give them another chance?

They can be nice sometimes – maybe you overreacted.

What happens now?

Who are you?

What do you want from life?

Oh – the questions. The thoughts. The rumination. 

The Constant ‘On’ Switch

Like a cog stuck on ‘on’, you are subjected to your mind racing no matter the hour of the day or night. 

I like to remind people when they tell me they get stuck in these patterns that actually, you’ve spent potentially a really long time being mentally drained and refilled at fast rates. The narcissist gives with one hand and takes almost immediately with another. Your mind gets so used to the mood change that you don’t have time to think.

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So when a relationship with a narcissist ends, all those thoughts are given the time and space to breathe!

And yes – that also includes when you should be sleeping. Your mind and body are trying to self-regulate after the trauma you’ve been through.

In time, this will improve. 

#5 Enlightenment, True Enlightenment

When you reach enlightenment, you know you’ve made it through some muddy waters to get there.

Months down the line, after a narcissistic breakup, you will have been through processes that got you there. These processes may have been difficult, painful, or even sad. 

Healing is never linear, though; you can expect much of the opposite through each bad or good day. One day, you will notice that the negativity becomes less, and you will begin to shine more positively and radiantly. 

Most people I have met who have been in narcissistic relationships use the initial period after it ends to gain knowledge about narcissism in general. All that time you thought you were with somebody impossible, moody, or simply just a bit controlling…

Now you’re learning what narcissism actually is. 

Time is the only thing that allows you to heal. If you give yourself enough of it, you’ll notice a few things.

You understand why the breakup was necessary.

You loop back to the idea that you were to blame – and put it to bed.

You stop ruminating about what was or what could have been – and accept. 

And best of all…

You think about the closure you didn’t have, and grant it to yourself. 

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