Narcissistic Abuse Narcissistic Abuse Recovery

Narcissist And Empath: A Ticking Toxic Timebomb

Empaths are sensitive. They feel the emotions of others. (Think empathy.)

They have a tendency to be people pleasers, because if they can help someone else feel better, then it helps them to feel better too.

They’re often not consciously aware of this, but know that they have a deep need to help others.

Unfortunately, this can come at a cost of not loving themselves enough.

They end up feeling drained from not focusing on their own wants and needs.

Then along comes a narcissist; who lacks empathy so they’re drawn to the empath, and the empath is equally drawn to the narcissist.

Warning: The narcissist may seem to have great empathy. This is deceiving, because the fake empathy is an ego boost for the narcissist.

Unfortunately this seems to be a match made in heaven, or is it really Hell?

In this case: Opposites do attract to each other. But the problem is: It’s a ticking time bomb.

Here’s Why

The beginning phase of a relationship with a narcissist is: Idealization.

They idealize their victim by “love-bombing”, which is really hammering the empath with allot of compliments, and telling them they’re “in love” with them (when the narcissist isn’t capable of real love.)

The empath; who’s feeling energetically drained, really takes in the love-bombing, which is the very thing they’re lacking.

However, it’s not actually love and the narcissist can only keep this up for so long.

It’s a temporary fix for the narcissist, who’s trying to make themselves feel better.

After all, if they believe the empath is awesome, then it helps them to feel better about themselves.

Until it no longer does, because the narcissist will continue to suffer with feelings of inadequacy. 

The Next Phase

Now that the empath believes that the narcissist is their “true love”, “soul mate” or any other label that seems to fit, the table suddenly turns.

The narcissist switches from the Idealization phase to the Devaluing phase.

They actually start to put down the empath, which is the exact opposite of the love-bombing. (It’s another tactic by the narcissist to help themselves feel better.)

But once again, it only helps them to feel better temporarily.

While the empath is becoming thoroughly drained from the put downs, gaslighting and other manipulation tactics, the narcissist is already looking for their next victim.

They need to move on, because the object of their affection is no longer thoroughly enamored with them, because they’re exhausted from the abuse.

Occasionally the narcissist throws some love-bombing at the empath, who by now is caught in a traumatic “trauma bond”.

The empath wonders what happened to the love of their life, and holds onto the hope that the wonderful life they had with the narcissist will return. (But it never will.)

The Explosive End

With the empath completely drained from the emotional roller-coaster ride, the narcissist goes to the “Discard” phase.

They’ve been testing the waters by hitting on other people, and starting a relationship with someone else before jumping ship.

This helps the narcissist to fill the void in their soul, because being alone would mean they’d have to face their demons.

The narcissist will find a way to rationalize the discard of the empath through tactics such as “gotcha” games, where they make the empath angry and then tell them they have an anger problem. (“Gotcha!”)

This creates an excuse for the narcissist to move on to the next “relationship”, while the empath has been dumped and is traumatized by the whole experience.

And unless the empath “cuts the cord” from the narcissist, they’ll continue to be manipulated, and the narcissist will try to hold on (called “hoovering”) because it keeps their options open.

The “truth bombs” often begin to fall after the relationship, as the empath has taken off the rose colored glasses and begins to see the narcissist for who they really are.

They might also find out about the narcissist’s “indiscretions” that were going on behind the scenes.

Now that it’s over, friends and acquaintances may admit that they could see through the narcissist all along, while others are in denial around who the narcissist is, which pours salt into an already gaping emotional wound.

The Fix

Finally, the only way to end the vicious cycle is for the empath to work on themselves. (Rarely will the narcissist admit they have a problem and seek help.)

To avoid getting into a toxic relationship in the first place, the empath needs to be aware of who they really are and what makes them tick.

They must learn to fill their own wants and needs first; to love themselves. This takes practice.

If they’re in a relationship with a narcissist, it’s important to transition out of the abusive cycle; which isn’t easy.

This is because the narcissist will try to hold onto them through manipulation tactics, even if they’re in a relationship with someone else.

Going “No Contact” is a common term in the world of narcissistic abuse.

It means really staying away from the narcissist, and not speaking to them because it’s easy for the empath to stay emotionally attached due to their level of empathy.

If children are involved, communication needs to be kept to a minimum, or possibly having a mediator.

For the empath, getting professional help is imperative.

It’s also imperative to not be in victim mode, but for the empath to heal and step into their power.

In the end, the empath will indeed heal with time and assistance, and with the right tools; they’ll learn to love themselves and not allow this type of relationship to happen again.

And, it’s possible for the empath to eventually have empathy toward the narcissist (from a distance), by knowing that the narcissist is suffering in their own way.

Ultimately through healing and guidance, the empath can find balance and love themselves for who they are.

This is how we can stop the cycle of abuse.

PS: For empaths who need help in this area, please check out the new Facebook group: Women healing after a narcissist. In addition, you’re welcome to book a complimentary Clarity Call with me to get insight into your next steps and to learn more about how I can help.

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