Are You the Victim of Narcissistic Abuse? You are Not Alone.
Updated: May 31
Do you have someone in your life who is difficult to get along with? Perhaps you have tried everything you can think of to improve the issue, but the other person just won’t budge? Psychologists may even describe the person as a “narcissist” or “highly toxic,” Ideally, we would all avoid such people. However, sometimes this is impossible because of work or family commitments.
Well, you are not alone. I am in this painful situation. My most recent annoyance involved reading an email where the toxic person capitalized the first letter of all proper names, including his name and everyone else’s name, but he repeatedly left my name uncapitalized. This pattern was not a type error as this pattern continued across many email interactions.
I wish this minor annoyance didn’t bother me, but it reminds me of the apparent dislike and scorn that I have experienced from this person so many times in the past. The constant put-downs somehow make me feel small, just like the small, uncapitalized letter at the start of my name.
Perhaps you pray for God to change the situation, and you desire nothing more than for peace. Sadly, peace often doesn’t come in these relationships.
Many people are in this situation, as evidenced by the numerous podcasts, blogs, seminars, and various learning opportunities that exist to recognize and avoid toxic narcissists and minimize their damage. It is a tremendous drain of energy and causes stress for many people. Chaos is the norm in these unfortunate situations.
There are no quick fixes that I am aware of, but some insights have emerged after dealing with narcissistic abuse for over thirty-five years.
Firstly, narcissists usually only pursue close relationships with caregiving types that are empathetic, warm, and accepting. Narcissists are quite selective of whom they target because most people will not put up with them, to begin with. I found that allowing my nurturing personality to continue to bless others is good medicine for all. I need to continue expressing my authentic self. I have learned to recognize the signs of narcissism to stop being a victim of dysfunctional people. Being a victim the first time is understandable, but repeating the pattern repeatedly means there is something internal that also needs to be addressed.
Secondly, I often remind myself that it is okay when a toxic person doesn’t like me. Although it makes me uncomfortable to be belittled and scorned, I know I need to stand strong. One thing that makes one vulnerable to a narcissist in the first place is wanting to please people at the expense of personal values and self-worth. Someone will be unhappy in a dysfunctional relationship with a narcissist, so I have chosen to make myself happy first and not worry about the narcissist’s anger and unhappiness. This may sound selfish, but I have learned through personal experience that the happiness of a narcissist is very short-lived and is based on control rather than mutual respect. The only person’s happiness I can consistently control is my own.
Thirdly, this relationship burden keeps me focused on my true friends and my true home, which is in heaven. I love and appreciate true friendship so much more now! I yearn for heaven because I know there is coming a time when there will be no more strife, pain, or tears. As simple and child-like as this may sound, it encourages me to strive to become my best self each day despite the unpleasant situation.