Codependent Narcissist Relationships are Complicated
by Lisa A. Romano
Codependent Narcissist Relationships
Look, if you are reading this and you are wishing to recover from Narcissistic Abuse, good for you!
If you recognize that all the confusion, anxiety, depression, angst, brain fog, memory loss, enormous self-doubt, and the fear of just about everything and everyone can be traced back to narcissistic abuse, Dear One, you are ahead of the game.
Most people who are in enmeshed codependent relationships don't even realize what is going on. They may be so below the veil of consciousness, or so emotionally abused that they are unable to recognize the fact that abuse is happening.
How sad is that?
When Abuse Feels Normal
Many of us grew up in crazy childhood homes in which unpredictability, fighting and a lack of safety was the norm. We knew nothing of going to bed feeling safe, protected, and like all was well. Instead, insecurity and generalized angst was our norm.
Lions and tigers and bears OH MY!
The Vibrational Connection
The Universe MUST maintain order and the easiest way to do this is by lining up vibrational frequencies with like vibrational frequencies. Although on the surface narcissists appear very different from codependents, at the core of both personality dispositions is a deep sense of shame. When a codependent carries shame and channels that shame by caretaking and people-pleasing, they are unaware they are lining up with a narcissistic personality that channels their shame through projection and dominance.
The Childhood Connection
Generally speaking, the narcissist and codependent have grown up feeling abandoned, rejected, unloved, and unwanted. Both have internalized abandonment and carry this internalization of such experiences as shame. The codependent is the one who has figured out that by acquiescing, people-pleasing, fawning, rescuing, and by suppressing one's needs they are able to avoid either additional abandonment or criticism. The narcissist, however, was unable to find ways to gain any sort of approval or reprieve from the experiences they were born into. No matter what the narcissist did, relief, acceptance, love, happiness, attachment, and joy never came.
Narcissists have learned that the world is a cold, harmful place and it is far better to eat than to be eaten and to punish rather than to be punished. No matter how hard you try to love someone with a narcissistic personality disorder, they will never be able to return that love because love, honesty, and vulnerability are viewed as threats to one's survival. Survival is hard-wired into the human brain, so falsely believing YOU might be the ONE who can heal the heart of a narcissist is little more than whimsical thinking.
Trust me, I have been there. The sicker the duck the bigger my heart became and the harder I fell.
The Rescuer and the Fixer
Codependents LOVE to rescue and fix people. We have never learned to believe that we are enough just as we are. Healthy people might not want us, we think, but perhaps a wounded duck might! In fact, codependent people will attract the most wounded, unstable personality in a room full of healthy others! Like a moth to a flame we are magnetically drawn to the shame-filled wounds of others we find intoxicating as they represent the fantasy of possibly having someone outside of us tell us 'we are good and we are enough'.
In some cases, codependents are drawn to wounded others because of the hero-fantasy. It sounds something like, "I will save him. All he needs is love. All he ever needed was to know he was enough. It is not his fault he is unloving today. I know if I love him the way he needs to be loved, I can turn him around. I can make him love me--NO--I can make him ADORE me."
Codependency and Control
Codependents like to be in control. Often, our childhood homes were unpredictable. Taking care of people is something we KNOW how to do. We know how to be the one in control. We know how to be responsible. We know how to make decisions. We know what other people need. We know how to do what needs to get done WHEN it needs to get done. Attracting unhealthy people that need to be taken care of assures we will ALWAYS be the one in control, or at least that is what our faulty, unconscious, codependent beliefs tell us is the truth.
Then the Bubble Bursts
Eventually, codependents grow tired of catering to the needs, demands, expectations, and needs of others. We simply have NOTHING left to give. But here's the thing...until we HEAL the beliefs that created our codependency in the first place, often we continue to attract needy, entitled, unhappy, discontented, negative people into our lives. Until we FIX our need to control everything and every one, our lives stall in one area or another.
Choosing to Walk on the Bright Side of Life
Letting go of people-pleasing, fixing, rescuing, and enabling is never easy. It takes practice to allow another grown-ass adult to figure out their stuff. It means we must assist our ego to release its need to feel validated because of the help we have offered another person. We must learn to be more authentic and mindful of who we help, how we help them, and WHY we are helping them. When we learn to STOP jumping in to fix other people's lives for them, we are choosing to live a more authentic life.
Boundaries Imply We Mean Business
Many codependents think they are setting boundaries because they complain, a lot! But this is just not true. Complaining is complaining. A boundary, on the other hand, implies some action will be taken IF a boundary is crossed or violated. Codependents must be willing to walk away from abusive conversations, gaslighting, neglect, stonewalling, rage, or manipulation. Tolerating passive aggressive covert or overt nonsense only reinforces the narcissist's hidden agenda, which is to get you to feel guilty for daring to hold them responsible for anything!
Starting Over Right Here and RIGHT NOW
When we choose to live a more authentic life, in time we notice our minds begin to shift. As we continue to become more self-responsible about our thoughts and actions, our bodies begin feeling lighter. When we recognize our desire to help others was our way of trying to be 'good enough' and when we refuse to reinforce these patterns, we help our bodies release negative, toxic shame. When we exert real boundaries with narcissistic others, we help them as well as ourselves.
When we tolerate bullying, gaslighting, manipulation, lying, and emotional abuse we reinforce the narcissist's faulty perception of the world, as well as themselves.
If you would like to learn more about how to stop being codependent, or if you are looking for online codependency and narcissistic abuse support group, you can request to join my Facebook Group here
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If you would like to learn more about my online program that teaches you how to overcome codependency, please visit the link below.
My next class relaunches on August 15th. I personally moderate this 12 Week Breakthrough Coaching Program which helps you uncover your thoughts and emotions, understand layers of the codependent mindscape, and assists you learn to become and merge with the observer within. The goal is to help identify unconscious patterns and assist you to develop a personal blueprint that allows you to ascend to higher states of consciousness.
My program will teach you to expand your perception and awareness of self, past unresolved traumas, faulty beliefs, and dysfunctional thoughts, through self-hypnosis brainwave meditations, insightful journaling prompts, weekly video lessons, and weekly live group calls.