What Happens When you Abandon the Narcissist?





Once the narcissist has you, they start to display a disinterest in you. 

They love the chase, and may well threaten to leave. 

What happens more often is that people decide to be the ones to leave the narcissistic relationship because the above cycle does not change.

As you leave – the narcissist realizes they lose control and all the convenience and power that came with the relationship.

You’ll see rage, mockery and indifference. What you may not be aware of, is that the narcissist fears abandonment. It may come as a shock to you, but it activates something within the narcissistic mind – and this is their inability to regulate abandonment.

Let’s see what happens when you abandon the narcissist.

Their Attachment Issues Come to Light

Being left by you is going to heighten their attachment issues. Narcissists struggle with attachment because the more they have been abandoned in life, the more they will be triggered by you leaving. 

This may come as a surprise because the narcissist comes across as either too cold or too confident to have such problems.

Still, in truth – they become lost when the other person in a narcissistic relationship goes away for a moment – even a day – as even those few hours are long enough for you to come to realize the truth about them. 

Abandonment styles can look either anxious or avoidant, so any narcissist finds it difficult to lay roots down and build a life with someone.

If you leave in any way – that is the moment they dread and fear.

Tension Rises The Closer You Are to Abandonment

Don’t get me wrong—abandonment doesn’t always have to be permanent. But when you both know there will be times when you’ll be away from each other, be it a work trip or family emergency, the closer you get to that day of departure, the more difficult things will become.

This can look like a raised level of conflict. Arguing can appear more intense. 

As things get more tense – the narcissist becomes more agitated. You don’t want these moments to be unpleasant, but as hard as you try to keep the peace, the narcissist isn’t interested. This can lead to a real tense exchange of words right up until the very moment you leave.

The narcissist is sending you off to your duties with an uncertain, unclear mind and heart, and they do this because they want you to know how unhappy your abandoning them has affected them. 

Getting Back is No Easier

Your return back from wherever it was that left the narcissist feeling so abandoned should improve things, right?


The narcissist knows you’re coming back, which leaves them wide and clear to let you know the misery you caused when you had to go.

They will remain distant, disaffectionate and detached. 

This is a pattern you will frequently see in anybody with attachment issues, but layering narcissism on top will make you feel at fault for leaving them and activating this primitive fear of them being left alone. 

Bringing yourself back together only makes room for further anger.

How could you leave? What made you think you could possibly just up and go?

Believe it or not – these words can even be muttered when they leave and go somewhere without you!

Their Terror is Real

In the exact same way a baby feels terror – you can bring the narcissists’ terror to the surface. They don’t understand that you can do things independently – and they can’t understand how and where you get the strength from to do so.

As far as you’re concerned, you are wondering what all the fuss is about. Meanwhile, the usually overly confident narcissist has overtly shrunk in self-esteem, and is left reeling at the thought of you not being around. 

A Rejection

Narcissists are antagonistic, which means any form of rejection doesn’t sit well with them. Even if you decide to reject an invitation from them for drinks or dinner, they will hate it because they see you as directly rejecting them altogether. 

There is a level of abandonment within this, even if it is slightly lower. They see your rejection as a loss of love and are fragile to it.

As the narcissist doesn’t like to look weak, they won’t show everyone their response rage, they will just show you. 

What does this look like to you?

It’s a total and utter surprise. After all, they are always the dominant one of the two of you, and now they look like a little, lost child. 

Don’t think for a second that soothing them will work—all it does when you go to them to reassure them is make them even more angry. 

How dare you call them weak?

Hoovering – and Plenty of it!

Why would any narcissist leave if they fear they’re being abandoned, only to try and hoover you back in?

They leave because they’re afraid. They want to leave first so they are in control of the narrative. Imagine them watching a horror movie they’re familiar with and hiding before the scariest part.

Can I bring them back? Will they return?

This push and pull will ignite hoovering, and it’s very possible to fall for it. 

Hoovering will, in the eyes of the narcissist, lure you right back to where you find yourself eye-to-eye with them. They want you to be close and will do whatever it takes to make it happen. 

This is how the cycle continues and becomes repetitive to the person who has to deal with the narcissist. It’s exhausting for anybody to be involved with, but it’s also something the narcissist does out of desperation to keep you hooked and in a place where you are made to feel you can’t live without them when in reality, they can’t live without you. 

More importantly, this is how the narcissist controls the entire relationship, and will do so with all their strength and power (which is a lot).

Abandonment – The Cure

You or I would have the self-awareness to recognize these huge roadblocks as obstacles that simply cannot remain. Sadly for the narcissist, this is nigh on impossible because any self-awareness involves self-reflection, and this is something any narcissist is incapable of. 

Helping yourself feel safer is a way to regulate the times you must leave a relationship for any time. Still, if the narcissist feels a constant sense of threat from the world – there’s nothing you or even they can do to prevent that feeling of being abandoned. 

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