Wounded Healers

Emotions should be treated with kindness and a gentle spirit. When an emotions feels like it is too overwhelming you can console that feeling and care for it. 

Think of your emotions and feelings as children who need to be taken care of and nurtured. If you abandon your feelings they will only grow more. You have to walk with them and hold their hand. 

Emotional wounds

When you feel sadness, grief or anger there is always a reason for it. Sometimes the reason is obvious and other times the emotion is coming from an old emotional wound. 

Emotions are always trying to tell you something. They are trying to protect you from something. 

It can feel like we cannot handle feeling the emotions and so we try to bury and repress them. But this is a way of abandoning ourselves. 

Abandonment

You have already been abandoned by other people in your life. You have been rejected by people and hurt by people. Your emotions are telling you that you need to be cared for.

Self Love

Self love is a powerful thing. It is not selfish , even though you may have been taught that way. Often the people that discourage us from caring about our own feelings, do so for their own agenda. 

In another words, they try to get you to forget about your needs and feelings, because they are protecting their own needs and feelings. This is kind of hypocritical …isn’t it?

Emotional fractures.

Refusal to listen to your emotions will cause you to break down and become fractured. Emotional wounds are often fractures parts of you that were hurt and abandoned at an early age. 

These fractured child parts are trying to get your attention. They want to know that you have not abandoned them. Your inner child needs to know that it has not been abandoned by you too.

Nurture your pain.  

When emotional pain comes up please nurture it as you would a sick child. Care for your feelings and console those wounded parts of yourself. Ask them what they need and have not been getting.

You can find ways to heal the emotions if you listen to them first. It is not selfish to care about your own feelings and the needs of your emotional body. Your emotional health is connected to all of you.

Separation from the emotional body

In order to give of yourself, you have to have something left to give. When we neglect emotional wounds, part of ourselves becomes separated from the whole. 

You need to be whole and your emotions need to be integrated with all of you. Your spiritual health and emotional health are connected. Your physical health is also connected to your emotions. 

Inner Child 

Listen to your inner child and all of your emotions and feelings. Nothing comes up for no reason. There is always a reason if you are feeling something. 

You have much to offer the world. You are a unique person with very special gifts to offer and to explore. 

Acceptance of self

 

Everything about you will flow better when you nurture your feelings. Do not abandon yourselves by stuffing down your emotions. Allow your feelings to be accepted without judgement. 

You can survive the feelings as you experience them as a caretaker. You may fear that you will be overwhelmed by your emotions but you cannot push them away from you. 

Old emotional wounds

 

When you nurture and care for your feelings, the pain will release from you. You may find that the root causes are from long ago and the wounds have been re-opened by some person or situation. 

If this happens then the old emotional wounds were never healed from the past. They are coming up in order to ask you to care for them. 

 

 

Carrying shame with us is possible the single most devastating, caustic thing that can happen. We must find our way out of shame, because it will destroy is by crushing our self esteem and keeping us incapacitated, by self doubt and a feeling if unworthiness.

Shame is an emotion and it is a state of mental trauma. Any type of severe trauma can cause us to carry shame. In turn “shame” itself can cause mental trauma. Most often, a mental state of “shame” was brought on by others who intentionally manipulated and traumatized us into feeling unworthy and shameful.

Shame, according to Wikipedia

Shame is a negative, painful, social emotion that can be seen as resulting “…from comparison of the self’s action with the self’s standards…”.[1] but which may equally stem from comparison of the self’s state of being with the ideal social context’s standard.  Wikipedia

So, shame is made up of…

1. a person’s personal feeling about who they “should be”

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2. the person’s feeling about “who they are”

3. When the perception of “who you are” does not meet your standards of “who you should be” then the result is feeling shameful, for not having the ability to be the person that you “should be.”

Who should you be? Where do our concepts of our “perfect selves” come from? Are the reasonable? Do these ideals of who we “should be” come from our own minds? Or were they projected onto us by others?

Also, where does our perception of “who we are” come from? Are we really seeing our true selves?  Are we seeing ourselves through our own eyes ? Or are we seeing ourselves in an untrue way, through the eyes of society? Are we seeing ourselves the way other people say they see us?

Are we perceiving ourselves through the eyes of society and the stigma and misconceptions of society?

Are we still seeing ourselves from the eyes of our abuser? Are we really worthless and stupid?  Are we doomed to never do any better in life than we are doing? Or are we confusing our true potential with the twisted ideas that some abuser fed to us?

The problem with people who have experienced abuse, is that they were manipulated at the deepest levels of their brains.  People who were abused as children were made to feel worthless from a very young age. The natural developmental stages of self conception and identity were damaged.

People that in domestic abuse, were emotionally and mentally damaged. The abuser uses mind manipulation to make the person feel useless and stupid. The narcissists forces a fictitious reality on their victim and this reality changes.

The abuser changes the reality, constantly on order to manipulate the victim. If the victim buys something that the abuser wants at the store, the abuser may hide it. Then they will call the victim stupid for forgetting to buy the item at the store.

This reality manipulation over time, has the effect of confusing the victim about their own sense of reality. After the victim leaves the domestic abuse situation, they still have a feeling of shame and worthlessness. It takes time before the person will be able to see the proper perspective about who they are.

If we have been abused, we do not have the same sense of ease in feeling “normal.” We feel different that other people and often do not feel like we “fit in.” That sense of shame that we experienced during abuse, still looms over us.

Nineteenth century scientist Charles Darwin, in his book The Expression of the Emotions in Man and Animals, described shame affect as consisting of blushing, confusion of mind, downward cast eyes, slack posture, and lowered head… Wikipedia

This quote by Darwin is interesting to me, in that he describes the physical and mental appearance of shame. He describes the physical manifestation of shame to be “downcast eyes, lowered head”..

When I was living in an abusive relationship, I got comments a few times from people, that I looked down when a man entered the room. I was not aware that I did this at the time.

Actually it was one of my hospice patients that first pointed it out to me. She noticed that when a male aide came into the room to assist me, I lowered my head and looked down. I would not make eye contact with him.

As soon as the man left the room, my female patient said to me “Never! Never, look down when you meet a man! You are just as good as them. You are taking in a submissive posture with men and you should not.”

I was very surprised that I had done this and not even been aware of it. After that incident, I tried to be mindful of my body language with men and women, at least just to be aware of what message I was sending. Also to be aware of how I felt about men.

It is amazing that a woman on her death bed was so mindful and caring about me, that she noticed this and “scolded” me about it. It hurt her to see me be submissive to men like that. She was seeing into the future and how that submissiveness was going to harm me.

This lady knew nothing about the fact that I was living in an abusive relationship. It was purely an outside perspective.

Clearly, at that time, I felt afraid of men and my way of protecting myself was to take on the “submissive” posture. I also had a feeling if needing to protect my face from being hit. The downward position of my head, made me feel safer.

Psychiatrist Judith Lewis Herman had theories about shame as it related to childhood abuse. Her studies were about how a person from childhood abuse sees themselves through the eyes of their abusers.

toxic shame is induced, inside children, by all forms of child abuse. Incest and other forms of child sexual abuse can cause particularly severe toxic shame. Toxic shame often induces what is known as complex trauma in children who cannot cope with toxic shaming as it occurs and who dissociate the shame until it is possible to cope with.[18] Judith Lewis Herman

Abusers tell their victims to feel shame. They shame them by verbally abusing them, mentally torturing them, sexually violating them and / or otherwise physically harming them. There is no physical abuse without mental abuse.

There is no sexual abuse without mental abuse. The damage to a person, goes into their identity, their self esteem and their ability to view themselves in a “normal” way.

What I mean by “normal” is to be able to view yourself on a scale of reality based levels. What you are worth to yourself, and other people should be based on the person that you are. When a victim views themselves through the eyes of the abusers, they will always have a feeling of secret shame.

It is hard to break the brain patterns that were inflicted upon you by your abusers. You are worthy! You are important! You matter! Those are the true things that you need to know and believe!

Your abuser did not want you to know that you were a worthy and special person. They may not even have wanted to know that themselves, because it was easier for them to abuse you if they thought of you as “inhuman” rather than a real person.

You are a real person. you are just as valuable and worthy of love as anyone.

Over time we can heal from these wounds. The PTSD (post traumatic stress) will never go away entirely. The past history of abuse will never go away. It is something we have to live with for the rest of our lives.

Instead of trying to crush it down, push the memories into the deepest recesses of our minds, we need to be ourselves and connect with others who will understand. We need to support and validate each other.

Together we can heal to a point where we can function better. Together we can create a community of support and love, that will uplift each and every one of us. Together we can turn our trauma around and use what we have learned to help others.

 

Nine Traits of Narcissism and Psychopathy

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Narcissistic Personality Disorder has nine traits. In order to be diagnosed with Narcissistic Personality Disorder a person must have at least 5 of the traits.

Narcissism is on a spectrum.

There are many people that have 2,  3 or 4 of the characteristics on this list. These people may have elements of narcissism. They would be said to have “narcissistic traits” but rather than  “full blown” narcissistic personality disorder.

People that have all 9 traits would be diagnosed with anti-social personality disorder. They are a psychopath. The more traits someone has, the more potentially dangerous they are to you.

It is difficult to know a psychopath well enough to be able to identify all of their traits because they keep things hidden and cover up their pathology by acting like a different person when they interact with others.

Here are the nine traits of narcissistic personality disorder.

1. Grandiosity –  This is an unrealistic view of oneself that they are bigger than life and better than others. They feel that they have a godlike, divine or extremely powerful purpose of being on the earth. Their very being is to be admired and obeyed. Nothing is more important than they are.

2. Arrogant and Domineering – think they are better than everyone else. They know more than anyone else. Controlling of others and dominating. They see others as inferior to them in intelligence, vision, looks, and everything else. They expect other people to admire and be in awe of them.

3. Preoccupation with Success and Power – They have a need to be powerful and have a cult of followers that admire them. They like to have a harem of sorts of people around them, as if they are a king or a queen. Their drive for success and power is due to their need for narcissistic supply and to get into positions where they have manipulate people.

4. Lack of empathy – an inability to care about the feelings of others or put themselves in someone else’s shoes in an emotional way. Actually narcissists and psychopaths have a cold empathy which allows them to understand your fears, weaknesses, hopes and dreams. They can take an inventory of you and then use the your feelings against you.

5. Belief of being unique – They believe that they are very special and that they are better than everyone else. They often think that they have a unique powerful purpose that sets them above everyone else and gives them an excuse to do whatever they want and take whatever they want.

6. Sense of entitlement – They feel that they are entitled to anything and anyone they want.   This includes things that belong to other people. It includes taking over the lives of other people and using people and then throwing them away like trash.  There is no appreciation when people do anything for them because they were entitled to it, in the first place.

7. Requires excessive admiration – they want to be admired and paid attention to all the time. They have no tolerance for anyone else being in the spotlight. Because they need to have their false self validated, they need people to pay attention to, talk about, admire and basically worship their false self. That way the illusion of the false self stays strong.

8. Exploitative – they will take advantage of other people for their own best interest. They will take more than they give, refuse to pay people for their services in a fair way …if at all, and use people up until there is nothing left of them

9. Envious of others – they are resentful when other people have things that they feel entitled to. They become angry when they see that other people have things that they do not.

It does not matter if the other person worked for it and they did not. They are envious of the property,  authority, and reputations of others. There is speculation that they are 

I have included a documentary below that you might find interesting. It goes through each of the nine traits of narcissism and explains them. 

Sam Vaknin is interviewed in this documentary. He is a level 9 narcissist who is unusual in that he is self aware. He is aware that he has this disorder.

One of the things that Sam says in this film, was very familiar to what I heard my most recent ex narcissist say many times.

Sam says  ” …the slightest hint of criticism or disagreement threatens the precarious balance that I have created over many years…the balance that constitutes my personality…you are out to destroy and kill me, so I am out to destroy and kill you..”

My ex used to get disproportionately angry when anyone criticized him or even offered any advice or suggestion that he change anything. Even suggestions from business coaches, that he paid to advise him, were taken as a threat.

Any time anyone disagreed with him or suggested that he change anything, he would become so angry that he would become violent and inflict self harm in front of them.

I think this was a way of acting out and also of frightening people. He would scream, he would hit his own head with his fist. On a few occasions he actually strangled his own neck with his hands.

He also was known to yell in anger and rip and tear his own shirt, in front of his employees. He would threaten self harm and even suicide when anyone asked him to do anything. He said that people should do things for him. They had no right to ask him to do things, because he could not tolerate any demands.

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Social Rules and Stigma Keeps Victims in Abusive Relationships

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Society has conditioned us to stay in abusive relationships. The marriage vow is “for better for worse” and this mentality is often used by the churches and the families of victims, to send them back into the abusive relationship. 

I have clients that have told me about pastors and counselors that have told them that relationships are 50 – 50, and if there is something wrong it is equally both partners’ responsibility. These victims are given some kind of advice about how to be a better partner, and then sent right back to the dangerous person rather than getting the support they need to leave the abuser. 

Families and friends of victims are often the same way. They remind the person about the commitment they made, and that “everything is not always roses”. They have no idea what it is like to live in an abusive relationship, or how mentally dangerous these abuser are. 

Physical abuse always escalates and the compliance of the victim with the abuser does not stop the abuse. It does not matter how much the victim tries to please the abuser. That is not the reason the partner is abusing them. It is not because they are not a good partner. 

Relationships that are emotionally and mentally abusive are just as dangerous. Victims of these relationships cannot prove they are being abused, and their reality is confused. Many suicides each year happen due to this kind of abuse. Accidents happen due to sleep deprivation, and illnesses occur in the victims because of the stress. 

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My Narcissistic Abuse Blog on Tumblr Turned 1 Today !

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Narcissistic Abuse Blog on Tumblr   HERE

 

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Aftermath of an Abusive Relationship – Self Care

When You Are Sleeping with a Psychopathic Narcissist

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vampire sexy.image from pinterest here

 

When you are with a psychopathic narcissist for a partner, you do not see their dark side at first. The seasoned predators are skilled at creating a shared psychosis…an illusion that you are two perfectly matched souls….destined to be together.

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When you are with an authentic partner, who has true compassion for you, they do not feel the need to state things like….

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I have compassion for you, even though it does not show.

I don’t usually have compassion for other people, but I have compassion for you.

Other people do not really understand you or see you. But only I can see the real you.

No one sees your talent but me.

I am the only one who has really loved you.

I am the only one who could really love you.

You are so different from other people that I am the only one who understands you.

You are too special to be with anyone but me.

No one will love you the way I do.

You are the only one who can save me.

I would die without you.

You would die without me.

You and I do not belong in this world.

We are nothing without each other.

You can only do great things if you are with me.

I will kill myself if you leave me.

I will kill myself if you….

I will kill myself if you don’t….

My life was nothing before you.

You don’t need anyone but me.

Your friends are not really your friends. Only I am.

Everyone always lets me down in the end.

Everyone disappoints me sooner or later.

Every relationship I have ends up with them abusing me. You will do the same.

Everyone leaves me. So will you.

No one is willing to give me what I need.

I never get enough help from anyone.

People should help me and do what I ask, without wanting something in return.

If you really loved me you would not expect things in return for doing everything I ask you to do.

How can I believe you love me if you are not waiting by the phone when I call?

How can you do things for other people when I am so needy?

How can you do things for yourself (like take a shower) without checking that I am okay first?

I should not have to be there for you to prove my love.

Love is about you being there for me and doing things for me that I can do myself.

Love is being there for me when you have an impotant business meeting to go to.

Love is being there for me, when your friend or family member has an emergency.

Love is about being there for me when you have an emergency.

Love is being there for me when you are sick or sleep deprived.

Love is giving up all your friends and family for me.

Love is you knowing that my job is more important than yours, but that I not help you pay your bills.

Love is YOU paying attention to MEEEEEE and me ignoring, rejecting, demeaning, minimizing and lying about you.

Are you a Magnet for Abusive Partners?

Everyone Deserves a Second Chance?

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There are many old  adages that are potentially harmful beliefs for you to carry.

These phrases have been passed dwn from generation to generation. They seem harmless enough, and supposedly make you a “better person.”

Compassionate people naturally believe these ideas, and we have made great efforts and sacrifices to stand by the values that these adages teach.

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“Everyone deserves a second chance.”

“Behind every great man is a good woman.”

“Turn the other cheek.”

“You only have one family, and you are stuck with them.”

“Good partners support their spouse ( partner) …no matter what.”

“Kindness is always rewarded.”

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What is the danger of blindly believing these things ?

Isn’t it “good” to always expect the best from people?

Shouldn’t we believe and trust in others…no matter what?

Isn’t everyone innately good?

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No.

They aren’t.

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Many people are innately good. Many people are basically trustworthy.

There are good-natured people that have a basic respect for other humans and living things.

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The problem with adages….other than the fact that they have been brainwashed into us…is the “Black and White” aspect to them.

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They suggest certain principles of “right” and “wrong” and create thought pattern behaviors that are rooted in shame and guilt.

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Toxic people can use this guilt to manipulate you very easily. Even as easily as asking you a question…

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“Don’t you believe in second chances?”

“Don’t you believe in me?”

“Don’t you believe that everyone deserves a second chance?”

“Aren’t you able to see the good in people?”

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This is manipulation that plays on your core values and beliefs. These beliefs that have been embedded into your subconscious. …

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“Good wives support their husband no matter what.”

“Real men don’t cry. They stuff their emotions dow, and don’t express them.”

“Good sons and daughters always respect their parents.”

“Good people keep tolerating whatever abuse their family fishes out at them.”

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There is an implied presupposition in these adages. ..All people are basically good.

You have been brainwashed to believe that if you just love someone enough, they will eventually let down their walls….and you will see the good person underneath all the barriers.

People walk back into houses with abusive partners every day, because someone guilted them into going back.

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Truth…..

These adages manipulate you with shame. Narcissists and psychopaths will lead you to believe that they are “good” people, that are just misunderstood, stressed, emotionally injured, etc.

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Truth…

Listening to your own feelings and intuition is good. You need these senses to protect yourself.

You have been brainwashed that “setting yourself on fire to keep other people warm” is noble. It makes you a good person. You will be rewarded for it later.

“Future promises”  are one of the favorite tools of manipulative people. They will lead you to believe that if you suffer through abuse now….you will be rewarded later….

But later never comes. You just get stuck in a reality that is being controlled by someone else.

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Truth…

You are not being selfish when you swt boundaries. You are not being selfish when you listen to your own feelings.

If someone is draining the life out of you, then they are taking advantage of you. Itvwill not balance out at some later date.

You are not a bad person if you do not give someone a second chance…a third chance….or a 10 th chance…after they have betrayed you.

People that sacrifice their dreams and desires for someone else are not better people…than people who follow their hearts and their passion….even if it means walking away from manipulative, cruel people.

So let’s “Get our heads out of the sand”

See what is right in front of you, and not what people tell you to see. Trust your feelings and your own perception of reality.

Don’t let people play on your desire to be a good person.

Be a good person. But spend your energy wisely. Follow your dreams. Access your truth.

 

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Join Gentlekindness coaching on facebook

design edited blue

art by my daughter Delenn Yake

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If you are interested in learning more about narcissism and narcissistic abuse…

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If you are in an abusive relationship…

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If you grew up with abusive parents…

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If you have C-PTSD from emotional and mental abuse…

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If you feel like you keep attracting narcissists and psychopaths…

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If you want to get some traction back into your life after abusive relationships…

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Join us on the gentlekindness coaching facebook page  

for information and support 

Aftermath of Narcissistic, Mental Abuse

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If you grew up in an abusive household, then you were desensitized to abuse. You were conditioned that abuse is part of your life, and you may not even recognize milder forms of abuse than what you experienced as a child.

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When I say “milder”… I don’t actually feel that way. Society has conditioned us that certain kinds of abuse are not really abuse. Plus, the covert tactics of abuse often cannot be seen or proven.

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You have probably had toxic people sneak across your boundaries, and permeate the cracks in your borders, many times. You may have some clear boundaries, or none at all.

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Children in emotionally healthy families are taught about personal boundaries. They has someone to teach them what to do when someone was abusing them, or taking advantage of them. If you has one or both parents that were conditioning you that your feelings don’t matter, then you were not given the proper “software” for your brain.

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Having your self esteem crushed down as a child /teenager, is detrimental. It has long lasting effects on the subconscious.

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As an adult, you now need to learn the skills for survival that you should have been taught as a child. You need the support to build your self esteem back up.

Being surrounded regularly by people who minimize you, is the worst thing that can happen for your self esteem. If you continue to draw toxic people towards you, then you will never realize a sense of self.

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Your identity is being controlled by others. They are not treating you this was because you deserve it. That is just a gaslighting tactic they use to make you stay around them.

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No, people don’t mistreat you because there is something innately wrong with you. In fact most codependents and  empaths are compassionate, creative, intelligent people.

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Of course, the narcissists are not creative or empathic. They are rarely as intelligent as they will tell you they are. In fact, you should put up a red flag in your mind, anytime you hear someone constantly, and repeatedly telling you how intelligent they are….how successful they are…how much people like them….how people always do what they say….or how much of a “good person” they are.

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Anyone can say those things. How someone describes themselves should be compared to their behavior and actions. It is not a normal behavior for someone to spout about their intelligence…etc…regularly.

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If you have C-PTSD from on-going emotional / mental abuse growing up, then you will be targeted by narcissists. That pattern will continue, as you re-play the events and situations of your childhood….subconsciously trying to reslove the un-resolveable.

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You cannot change these kinds of people. Their treatment of you has probably caused you depression, PTSD, an anxiety disorder….and possibly suicidal thoughts …..All of which you may feel is due to some kind of mental illness in you.

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It is all part of their game. They intentionally cause you to be emotionally and mentally unstable.

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Then they make you believe that you need them. You are helpless…according to their “supposed” opinion of you . ….and you are convinced by them that you cannot possibly navigate the big bad world without them.

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In the mean time, the “Big Bad World” is either living in your home, bossing you around at work, or undermining any efforts you make towards being independent and autonomous.

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If you are an adult with a living narcissistic parent, they are probably still disrespecting you, and treating you like a child….and not in a good way. (I don’t treat my children this way)

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You need to re-wire the false beliefs that were programmed into your brain. You can Get Coaching, to help you with that.

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You need to evaluate each of your relationships, and see whatever truths that you have been brainwashed not to see. You can Get Coaching for that too.

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You need to be validated for all the abuse and gaslighting. You guessed it….you can Get Coaching for that one too !

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Do you need a compassionate person to listen to you…and really hear you? You can Break the Chains that hold you back from really blossoming in the world.

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Isn’t it time that these toxic people stopped using us? Isn’t it time for their cruel tactics to have some light shed on them?

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Why should we continue to bow down to their fear tactics…or even care what they think about us? The opinion of a toxic person, about Who You Are, does not count at all.

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Why?

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Because malignant narcissists constantly lie. They twist the truth around, and spin things in their favor….ALL THE TIME.

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We are NOT subservient to them. Their version of the truth is always twisted. Therefore, their opinion about you is not valid.

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Wouldn’t you like to get to discover the Real You? Unravel the lies from the truth. Counter the effects of the gaslighting on your mind.

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You need to feel calmer and more confident. You can Get Coaching  for that.

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You need to be heard, and to realize the beauty within you. That beauty that has been crushed and bruised.

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You can get your situation validated. You can be heard. You can get coaching for dealing with the aftermath of narcissistic abuse.

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Don’t let wondering about the cost stop you from calling to get coaching.

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I work with anyone who is a good match for coaching with me. If I feel I can help you, then I will work with you to individualize a plan.

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Gentlekindness coaching.com  – Annie

 

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