When the Narcissist Wants to Stay Friends After the Discard

When the Narcissist Wants to Stay Friends After the Discard

Have you ever wondered why some narcissists always want to seem to stay friends with their exes? Have you personally dealt with a narcissistic ex who insisted on being friends? It makes any sane person wonder why someone who clearly did not care about you during your relationship would be interested in maintaining your friendship, right?

It seems a little ridiculous. Whether it’s a full-on hoover maneuver or it’s just a misguided attempt to secure you as a backup source of narcissistic supply, you’re probably feeling a little confused on whether it’s even safe to be friendly with someone like this – that is, if the idea doesn’t make you feel absolutely disgusted.

What is the hoover maneuver?

The hoover maneuver, also known as hoovering is what we call it when the narcissist tries to sort of gain your attention again, or to “suck you back in” after the discard. The hoover maneuver isn’t always just about getting back together, but it can be drama-related or it can be an attempt to reconcile the relationship. In many cases, the hoover is used when you go no contact as an attempt to reconnect with you. (Side note: Yes, the “hoover” is named after the famous vacuum cleaner company).

What is narcissistic supply?

Narcissistic supply is basically your energy and attention and the narcissist requires it to feel like a whole person.  You and anyone else in the narcissist’s life will be used as a source of narcissistic supply to get attention, validation, admiration. Sometimes, narcissistic supply includes sex, but not always. The narcissist uses this “supply” to feed their ever-fragile ego and to maintain their false self. The narcissist may also have a circle of supply or “narcissistic harem,” which can include intimate partners, children, parents, other family members, friends, employees and coworkers, and even acquaintances.

How can you tell a narcissist is hoovering you?

When the narcissist has discarded you (or even if you’ve discarded them), they will sometimes tell you they’d like to stay friends, or they’ll say they’d like to continue your intimate relationship.

Any situation like this is a narcissist who is hoovering. But here’s the thing. Hoovering is not wanting to sincerely rekindle a relationship that went bad. It is a manipulative tactic that the narcissist uses to get you back into their control, whether or not they want to continue the actual relationship. As always, narcissists seem to have a playbook, and there are some common behaviors that narcissists might demonstrate when they’re using this particular manipulation tactic.

1. The Sentimental Out-of-Nowhere Call

You may not have heard from your narcissistic ex for six months and then all of a sudden they call you to say they saw a movie or heard a song that reminded them of you. They do this on purpose. In their minds, they’ve given you time to get over their abuse, so they’re hoping you’ve forgotten who they really are (and that you’ll allow yourself to be reeled back in by your own sentimental feelings). Don’t fall for it.

2. The Fake Apology

Narcissists only apologize for anything if they believe it will benefit them to do so. They don’t feel remorse for things they’ve done unless they’re being punished for their behavior – and even then, they are only sorry they got caught. But when the fake apology comes, it’s all about getting what they want from you. So, they will pretend to believe that they were wrong in the relationship and will pretend to take responsibility for it. Just remember that they don’t believe they did anything wrong, and they’re only saying this because they know that is what you want to hear.

3. The Special Day Call

A lot of narcissists will call you on your birthday or your anniversary with them, or during the holidays. They do this because they want you to believe that they actually care – but the truth is that as always, this is all an act and they’re really just looking to get a little narcissistic supply from you. They may also be feeling lonely. You’d do best to block them and go no contact – or at the very least, to ignore the “special day call.”

4. The Soulmate Claim

Narcissists are well-known for their little soulmate scams. One of the most effective ways they can hoover you is through reintroducing idealization, or love bombing, into their arsenal. That means they might get a little sappy with you. They’ll claim you were their “one” and that you’ve ALWAYS been the one. The ONLY one, they swear!  They’ll claim to be sad that your relationship ended because you are their soulmate. They’ll say they can’t live without you and claim that no one else makes them feel the way you make them feel. They will shower you with sweet words, begging you to get back together. But whatever you do, don’t fall for this one, no matter how difficult it is to resist. They’re only playing this game so they can get you back into their control and continue their abuse. The narcissist will not change, no matter how hard they claim otherwise.

5. The Unsolicited Gift

If you find yourself holding a beautiful bouquet or a delicious box of chocolates sent to you by your narcissistic ex, with a love note attached, you’ve got yourself an unsolicited gift, and its only purpose is to get your attention so they can start the conversation with you again. This is yet another hoover, and your best bet is to get rid of it (or keep it, but do not respond to the gesture).

This video offers additional insight into the narcissist’s motivations for wanting to stay friends with their exes after the discard.

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Did you know? Online help is readily available for survivors of narcissistic abuse. Here are some options to begin healing from narcissistic abuse right away.

No Closure At the End of Your Relationship? What Now?

No Closure At the End of Your Relationship? What Now?

Why do narcissists refuse to give you closure in a relationship?

Are you desperate for closure after the ending of a relationship with a narcissist?  Rarely is the need for relief from the discard allowed by the narcissist – and being able to speak your mind and discuss the issues you lived with if you have gone no contact is practically a foreign concept.

Lack of Closure After a Toxic Relationship Leaves You Reeling

Feeling the need for closure in order to move on and heal can perhaps be one of the more frustrating things survivors of narcissistic abuse go through after a discard. I know that for me personally, it left me feeling like it was impossible to stop thinking about the narcissist and I even struggled to forgive myself for having been with them in the first place. Can you relate?

What can you expect from the narcissist at the end of a relationship?

With a narcissist, if you get closure then you are one of the rare few. The narcissistic person will not allow you to get the closure you need. Instead of closure you get the silent treatment, smear campaigns, gaslighting, blame-shifting, the narcissist playing victim, hoovering, and repeated abuse. In other words, anything but closure.

They might even call you the abuser. Of all the people I have spoken to about the abuse they have suffered, not one has said they have had closure directly from the narcissist.

Can you create your own closure so you can move forward with your healing after narcissist abuse?

Absolutely you can! This video talks about why a narcissist won’t give you closure as well as ideas for how to move forward with your own life to create the closure you seek.

Get Help with Narcissistic Abuse Recovery Now

Additional Narcissistic Abuse Recovery Support Resources

How The Narcissist Sees You: Narcissistic Supply Explained

How The Narcissist Sees You: Narcissistic Supply Explained

If you’ve ever met a malignant narcissist or someone who has the traits consistent with narcissistic personality disorder, chances are that you know someone who is addicted to narcissistic supply. Most malignant narcissists are addicted to admiration, at least on some level, and nearly all of them are addicted to having people “give themselves” to them!

If you are among the people the narcissist considers to be part of their inner circle, or if you’re the spouse, child, or another family member, you are most likely being used for narcissistic supply, or you were in the past. They demand your respect even though they don’t earn it. They demand your support, but they never return the favor, unless it benefits them to do so. They love being told that they are amazing – and they love it when you freak out and scream and act crazy. That’s especially true when they drive you to it. They want attention whether it is positive or negative. That also means they demand compliments, money, sex, and anything else that helps them keep their false self alive.

The continuous attention and admiration that the narcissist gets from you help to feed their over-blown, bloated, secretly non-existent sense of self-worth and esteem – that false self they project to the outside world. In many cases, narcissists are able to summon up a powerful kind of charm and charisma that seems to help them keep getting more and more attention, assuring a constant stream of narcissistic supply coming their way.

What is Narcissistic Supply?

Narcissistic supply means attention, admiration, emotional energy, and other kinds of “services” the narcissist requires in order to function and to maintain their ego. It can involve smile attention, or sex, money, caregiving (and caretaking), and more. The narcissist’s need for your emotional energy can be likened to the mythical vampire’s need for blood. They require it to survive. It nourishes them and keeps them feeling comfortable with their lives. They get their narcissistic supply from people, but in some cases, they might even get it from a pet or group of people.

What does it mean when you call someone “a narcissistic supply?”

In the narcissistic abuse recovery community, we often refer to the victim of the abusive narcissist as “the narcissistic supply.” What we really mean is the “source of narcissistic supply,” and this is sometimes misunderstood. People might think by calling ourselves “supply” we are minimizing ourselves. But what we are doing is acknowledging that the abusers in our lives only saw us for what we could provide to them – not for what and who we actually are. In other words, we are reminding ourselves that, as a “narcissistic supply,” we are used by the narcissist to get attention, validation, admiration – all the “supply” they need to feed their ego.

What qualities do narcissists look for in a source of narcissistic supply?

There are certain qualities that make someone feel more likely to be used as a source of narcissistic supply. These include the following.

  • Empathetic (especially when it means you react quickly to their extreme emotions).
  • Kind and compassionate (but they’ll call you abusive for setting a healthy boundary).
  • Willing to put others first (though they’ll always accuse you of being selfish).
  • Modest about your good qualities (so your ego won’t require much of them – they never validate you).
  • Attractive (even though they will tell you otherwise to hurt you).
  • Intelligent (even though they will constantly make you doubt it).
  • Independent and able to entertain yourself (so they can ignore you when they want to).
  • Willing to drop everything for them and do whatever they want, when they want, without question (because they need your attention when they need it, but they want you to leave them alone when they want that).
  • Flexible and willing to change for them (though they’ll literally never return the favor).
  • Loyal (because, obviously, they deserve loyalty, despite the fact that you don’t, according to them).
  • Low or reduced self-esteem (often due to having grown up in a toxic family or having previously have endured an abusive relationship of any kind (because it makes you more likely to accept abuse again and/or to have lower standards, along with a higher threshold for abuse, making you more tolerant and accepting of their abuse).
  • Socially brag-worthy (In other words, they’ll be proud to show you off and claim you as their property – even though they’ll do everything in your power to make you feel completely worthless behind closed doors. They do this because it keeps you from believing you can do any better. This, along with all of their other manipulations, is designed to keep you around if and when they want you).

What kind of people typically attract narcissists? 

Let’s talk about the types of people who attract narcissists. In this video, I’ll fill you in on exactly who narcissists are seeking out for supply and why.

 

How does the narcissist see you?

Whether you are a child of a narcissistic parent, a co-worker to a narcissist, or someone who has or had a narcissistic partner, you could be a source of narcissistic supply for them. Many have a whole circle of supply, which we sometimes call a narcissistic harem.

As a source of narcissistic supply, the narcissist sees you as someone who gives them something they need. This could be simply attention and admiration, or much more. In most cases, they may also get supply out of scaring you or making you cry, or out of making you chase them or worry about them.

While they may say otherwise, the narcissist sees you as a product and/or a service – or, in many cases, as an extension of themselves. And while they may claim to love you, what they really love is what you can do for them. They love that you are among the people who provide them what they “need,” and yet, sadly they can never love or feel any compassionate empathy for you.

What happens if you refuse to keep providing narcissistic supply? 

The fact that they see you as a source of narcissistic supply leads the narcissist to, on so many levels, literally NEED you. And that is exactly why you’re likely to see a fit of narcissistic rage if they start doubting your devotion. FOr example, you might suddenly decide you’re going to start taking care of yourself because you’ve recognized that you have recently slipped in that area. As you do this, you might even start setting a few boundaries and feeling even better.

How does the narcissist feel when you cut off their source of narcissistic supply?

This will lead you to start questioning them and demanding the respect you’re due. They might notice that you’re not bending to their wishes anymore. And of course, being as self-focused as they are, they won’t be interested in your personal growth. All they see is that their source of narcissistic supply might suddenly be cut off. That scares them.

Just for reference, close your eyes for a second and imagine how you feel when you are facing a power outage. If you’re anything like me, you might get a little irritated (or more than a little), especially if you are busy on a particular day and need the power to work on your computer. The longer it is out, the angrier you become.

Or, imagine how you’d feel if you were suddenly forced to fast for 48 hours and you’re not prepared. You’re going to stay hungry (and if we’re being honest, maybe a little hangry, at the very least). And you’re going to be pretty cranky.

Both of these examples offer a bit of insight into how the narcissist feels when they are deprived of narcissistic supply.

A narcissist will always look for a source of supply even if you are no longer that source if you go no contact. And if they find a source of supply before you leave them, then they will discard you and will end up hoovering if their new source of supply ‘dries up’.

How Narcissists Test You: 10 Ways They Know You’ll Make a Good Narcissistic Supply 

How do narcissists test someone to find out if they’ll be a good long-term source of narcissistic supply? This is how narcissists test you to see if you will be a good source of narcissistic supply.

More Resources on Narcissistic Supply

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The Aging Female Collapsed Narcissist

The Aging Female Collapsed Narcissist

(Prefer to watch/listen instead of read? See video on YouTube)
Do you know a woman who seems to love being a perpetual victim? Someone who blames everyone else for her misery? Whether she’s your mother, your wife, an ex or a friend or relative, have you met a woman who seems to have sort of lost her ability to get what she wants? If you do, let me ask you a few questions.

First, is she of a certain age? And if so…does she seem to have an over-inflated sense of her own self-importance? Is she ridiculously entitled and does she require excessive and constant attention admiration from the people around her? Does she clearly think she is more important than others, even if she pretends otherwise? Might she have a tendency to over-exaggerate her accomplishments and/or her talents? Does she often talk about how she used to be famous or beautiful or rich?

Does she seem to think she might only be able to associate with people she deems special? Is it difficult to have a conversation with her that isn’t…well…about her? Does she tend to take advantage of people and their kindness? Is she the kind of woman who seems to want special treatment above everyone else, and does she forget or not seem to be able to care about how people feel? Is she conceited or stuck up or arrogant? Does she always need to be the best and have the best of everything?

And what happens if you dare to criticize her? Does she get upset or angry when she doesn’t get what she wants, or when people don’t treat her better than they treat everyone else? Does she seem to always have issues in her personal relationships and friendships?

And despite the fact that she tries really hard to seem perfect and infallible, do you ever secretly think she might secretly be insecure or that she might be dealing with a lot of shame about herself?

If so, you might be dealing with an aging female narcissist. In fact, she may have found that she’s not quite as capable of getting the kind of narcissistic supply that she’s used to. This can happen when the narcissist’s family and friends have just had enough and one-by-one, abandon them.
In some cases, the narcissist loses their ability to attract new supply because they get older and lose their looks, or because they become so self-involved that they forget how to do the whole love bombing thing – or any combination of these things. But a narcissist really NEEDS that supply to continue to exist, right? So what happens then? Do they become a real person, or do they just sort of lose it?

What is a Collapsed Narcissist?

When a narcissist is unable to obtain narcissistic supply, what can you expect? Some people call this a narcissistic crisis or a collapsed narcissist. Whatever the label, it’s a big problem – and often, not just for the narcissist, but also for the people around them.

For the record, let me define the collapsed narcissist: it’s what you get when a narcissist has stopped being able to obtain the proper amount and type narcissistic supply. And narcissistic supply is, in most cases, a person to help bolster the narcissist’s self-worth, self-esteem – value as a human being. In essence, a collapsed narcissist will feel like they’ve been denied the very supply they need to exist – their proverbial life’s blood.

This leads to narcissistic injury, and as the collapsed narcissist writhes helplessly in the pain of not getting what they believe they’re due (whether it’s meeting some big goal or simply getting the admiration and praise they feel they rightly deserve), their whole world feels like it’s falling down around them.

Psychology of the Collapsed Female Narcissist

When it comes to the collapsed female narcissist, they will quickly find themselves losing self-esteem and in so many ways, their self-image is nearly erased. They begin to self-devalue and self-doubt. They literally hate themselves to the point that they project this self-hate onto everyone else around them. So, since she figures that everyone “hates” her anyway, the female narcissist may as well hate them back. She sees no other option.

There is no more (or very little) social life for the collapsed narcissist. People, the narcissist reasons, are all fake and stupid anyway, so why should they bother to be kind to anyone? At this point, the female narcissist practically lives in constant attack mode, attempting to force people around her to provide the much-needed supply to which she was once accustomed. She becomes overly sensitive and full of rage and hate. She throws temper-tantrums that would rival a two-year-old and is outright intolerant, disrespectful, and often even violent in words and even actions to the people around her.

The previously-maintained facade of a nice/cool/easygoing/friendly kind of person falls away and the true face of the narcissist is revealed – rage, ugliness, and general disgust for humanity.
Female Narcissists and the False Self

Narcissists put up a facade or create a false self-image for the world. They need you to think that they are superior and they need to have the best of everything. Of course, covert narcissists put on a very different image of them having low self-esteem, which they really do, and they love to play the victim. They might also appear to be quite altruistic, but they only do this in order to get attention, not to actually help anyone. Grandiose and covert narcissists project themselves differently, but they both are just as manipulative, dangerous, and lack emotional and compassionate empathy.

All narcissists thrive on narcissistic supply which they get from others who they use, manipulate, and abuse. Female narcissists are, in so many ways, just like those mean girls that you hear about. They do what they can to make their appearance flawless, and narcissists who become mothers manipulate and control their children. Their kids quickly join the ranks of their main sources of supply. That is why children of narcissistic mothers don’t get to experience unconditional love growing up, and many of them were abused, physically, psychologically, or both.

But what happens to these female narcissists when they age? What do you think happens to them when their appearances change and end up getting wrinkles? What happens to them when their children leave the nest? And may even go no contact on them? And if she is divorced or widowed, how would she gain supply? You can see that is when the world of the aging female narcissist begins to crash down on her, she’s at risk of collapsing.

The Collapsed Female Narcissist in Action: What to Expect

While they are still unable to deal with any sort of blame, criticism, or perceived disrespect of themselves, they are actively projecting their own self-hate to the people in their lives – or maybe random targets such as people of different religions, races, or even political affiliations. This is when the gloves come off and the female narcissist blasts out her blatant bigotry and small-minded ways. You’ll see that anyone who is different from the narcissist is quickly minimized and put into a “not good enough” box (to put it very mildly).

This is also often when narcissists will go all-out to abuse their partners, whether physically, mentally, or otherwise. And yes, even female narcissists will abuse their partners and anyone else who comes into their inner circle. Some narcissists will excessively cheat, or gamble away their money. In some cases, it’s worse than that, but we won’t go into all of that today.

The loss of narcissistic supply triggers defensive behaviors, such as the whole “leaving my family and starting a whole new life,” behavior – in which the narcissist literally flees what he or she sees as the scenes of their failures and attempts to literally start over again. They may lose not only their primary source of supply – spouse or partner – but also their children, friends, and anyone else who used to offer supply.

This leads to the ultimate collapse and often, a mental breakdown from which they may never recover. If you look at the narcissistic personality as a sort of house built on stilts, imagine that the lack of narcissistic supply is a strong wind that causes the house to come crashing down.

The Choices of the Collapsed Female Narcissist

The female narcissist has two choices if she wants to move forward here. She can try to become a whole person and develop real coping skills (and in some cases, obtain a new source of narcissistic supply), or she can remain collapsed and poison everything else in her world in the process.

So back to the house metaphor – the narcissist could burn down all the houses around theirs in order to take revenge on everyone and everything else. What it all comes down to is that regardless of the reason for the narcissistic collapse, the narcissist blames everything and everyone EXCEPT her self. She must believe, ultimately, that she is a victim and that nothing is her fault.
Do you know an aging female narcissist?

If your mother was that narcissist and you decide to go no contact with her, you can bet that her world feels like it is ending. She same will go for any female narcissist you’ve dealt with – but when she is unable to find and secure a new, worthy source of supply, she will become openly mean to literally almost anyone she deals with, and she will believe she is in the right, every single time.

You might call her a Karen, if you were the sort of person to call out Karens.

Remember this. When a female narcissist is collapsing, she might feel like everything is falling down around her. Her world feels like it is nearly ending – and as she pathetically tries to hold on to the self she used to be, to hold on to her past, she will secretly loathe herself – but she will blame everyone but herself for this issue. She may not even recognize that she’s no longer the self she used to be. She may become more insecure than ever, and chances are that she will do her best to keep faking it. She might spend a lot of time in a plastic surgeon’s office, and she might find herself competing with other women in odd and uncomfortable ways.

The truth is that she hates herself for what she has become, even though aging is natural and part of life. I mean, don’t get me wrong – as someone who is 45 years old living in a society that values youth and shuts down women of a certain age – I understand why it can be difficult – especially for a woman who bases her entire value on external things and the ability to manipulate people to get what she wants.

The female narcissist would prefer that reality to be covered up – she wants to hide her current self so badly. As the female narcissist ages, her beauty begins to disappear, her kids are no longer around, and she is losing her sources of supply – those people who inadvertently were her “shield” to the world. And now that she’s no longer able to control people the way she used to, all of those terrible parts of herself she has been working so hard to hide are bubbling to the surface.

That means she will do lots of crying and will not make an effort to hide how pitiful she really is. Expect plenty of hoovering at this point as the collapsed narcissist will do what she can to get her kids back if they’ve gone no contact, not to mention other former sources of supply. You’ve got to remember: She is desperate right now as her world has crashed down.

A collapsed female narcissist can be even more dangerous and crueler than her younger counterpart, believe it or not, and be careful with her, because she will be the dangerous type who has nothing left to lose. It’s isn’t pretty, and while it would be really easy to feel sorry for her, don’t let her pitiful appearance fool you – she is more toxic than she appears.

Question of the Day: Do you know someone who might be a collapsed female narcissist? How did or do you deal with her? Share your thoughts, share your ideas, share your experiences in the comments section below this video, and let’s talk about it.

Why Is The Narcissist Still Obsessed With You?

Why Is The Narcissist Still Obsessed With You?


(Prefer to listen or watch instead of reading? Here’s the video on YouTube)

We recently talked about how to deal with feeling obsessed with the narcissist, even after the relationship ends. But what do you do when you’re dealing with a narcissist who is obsessed with you? And why would that even be the case? Why would a narcissist remain obsessed with you even if they’ve discarded you? Certainly, it would make more sense if you were the one who ended the relationship, but even then, how long does it go on and why does the narcissist stay so obsessed with you? Well, let’s talk about it.

After you have been discarded by the narcissist or you did that to them and went no contact, you will very often notice that they are still quite obsessed with you. As I said, it would be more understandable that they would not be able to stop thinking about you after you go no contact with them.

Why is the Narcissist Obsessed With You?

So, first, let’s talk about the why of it all. If we were to assume that narcissists are regular humans, it might look like this.

Let’s say you had a friend who ghosted you and blocked your number and contact information out of the blue. You had no idea what happened, and there was no trace of them to be seen again. Most likely, you would not be able to stop thinking about what they did. You would be quite hurt and confused. That is why it would be understandable for the narcissist to still be obsessed after you go no contact if the narcissist could be considered a regular human.

But let’s say that same friend who randomly discarded you were to also become obsessed with you at the same time. Why would they be obsessed with you if they were the ones to discard you? It was their choice to cut all ties. Why would they still care about you at all?

Well, narcissists don’t care about anyone else the same way that you or any regular person would because they lack emotional empathy and compassion. But there is one reason that narcissists are still obsessed with you, even they are the ones to discard you.

It All Boils Down To The Narcissistic Supply You Provide

The narcissist is still obsessed with you because as they see it, you are still a source of narcissistic supply,. despite what it may seem in the moment. They will take any type of supply they can get, so long as it feeds their ego –  whether it is positive or negative. The positive would be them getting praise or getting what they want, and the negative would you be getting angry and emotional with them. The supply could even be neutral such as you being there in their life alone. They need it and you have proven to be an ideal source.

The sad truth is that this is exactly why the narcissist is obsessed with you.

One thing to remember is that everyone wants to be noticed, loved, and heard, and validated. Whenever anyone dismisses your pain and suffering or amazing accomplishments, that hurts and you would understandably be upset. But narcissists crave all of that all of the time – 24/7. You as a non-narcissist only want those things when there is a good reason for it but don’t demand it because you might be secure enough to know that you are noticed and cared for under normal circumstances. The narcissist is not.

So, when you are in a relationship with a narcissist, there are three phases that you go through with them. The first phase is the love-bombing phase where you are showered with “fake” love, which makes you believe the narcissist is someone from heaven. The next phase is when they devalue you where you begin to see their true colors, and they are cruel and condescending to you. The last phase is when they discard you. And all of these phases can happen at the same time throughout the relationship. All of these phases that you go through with the narcissist provides them with the supply they need.

If they don’t get their fill pf narcissistic supply, it is like you not going with food or water for days. It is very threatening to them You are just that perfect source of supply. Even if they discard you and just leave you out of the blue to go for another source of narcissistic supply, you are still an option for them when they need you again – at least as far as they’re concerned.

And, of course, beware: there may come a time when the narcissist attempts to hoover you back into the relationship.

Bottom line? The narcissist isn’t obsessed with you in a way where they would truly miss you the same way you would miss someone else. They are obsessed with the narcissistic supply you provide. And you going no contact is the biggest threat to their ability to hold on to the potential supply you could offer in the future. In other words – it’s all about what you can do for the narcissist, not who you are or what you’re about.

Question of the Day: Have you dealt with a narcissist who was obsessed with you – or who just wouldn’t leave you alone? Share your thoughts, share your ideas, and share your experiences in the comments section below this video, and let’s talk about it!

4 Ways to Get a Narcissist to Leave You Alone

4 Ways to Get a Narcissist to Leave You Alone


(Prefer to read/listen? See video on YouTube)

If you’ve tried to end a relationship with a narcissist, or a narcissist has ended a relationship with you, there are several things you could expect to happen. They might just ghost you and appear to have fallen off the planet for a while. They might be moving forward with a new source of narcissistic supply, and that might mean they don’t bother you for a while. They might even try to hoover you back into the relationship with some made-up or exaggerated drama, or even a somewhat expected declaration of undying love.

But what are you supposed to do if the narcissist just won’t leave you alone? How do you deal with a narcissist who refuses to allow you to use no contact or low contact to heal yourself?

After all, all you want is peace. And in order to get that, you need that narcissist to leave you alone – whether it is an ex, a parent, a sibling, or a co-worker. They won’t leave you alone because you are either be a great source of supply for them or because something in them feels the need to perpetually torment you.

I think we can all agree that dealing with a narcissist is always emotionally and even physically exhausting, especially since you have to deal with their little fits of narcissistic rage if something doesn’t go their way. They can be verbally, emotionally, and psychologically controlling and abusive, and once you’ve seen them for what they are, you cannot unsee them.

Even if a part of you wishes they’d become the person they promised you in the first place, or if a part of you feels guilty, the biggest part of you knows that this person is toxic in your life and that if you’re ever going to heal and begin to create the life you truly want and deserve, you have to extricate them in no uncertain terms.

How to Get a Narcissist to Leave You Alone

Now, obviously, learning to set strong boundaries and going no contact with a narcissist is the ideal thing to do. As uncommon as it feels and difficult as this can be, no contact can and will work with a parent or a sibling, or an ex if you don’t have to co-parent with them. It’ll work if you are dealing with a narcissistic coworker, friend, or acquaintance. In case you’re unfamiliar with no contact, it is when you literally block the narcissist from contacting you at all, you stop seeing, speaking to, and otherwise communicating with them. This, done successfully, will prevent them from harassing you.

Of course, in many cases, this leads to the inevitable hoovering stage, meaning they try to suck you back into the relationship (and that, if we’re being honest, means they’re trying to hook you back in for their own gain, usually for the narcissistic supply of some kind). Hoovers might come in the form of drama or pretending to need help with something only you can do, or even that declaration of undying love I mentioned a moment ago. When they use the hoover maneuver, the narcissist might say things such as ‘Oh I missed you’, or give fake apologies. You need to stay strong and keep your boundaries firm to not give in to them if they do that. However, if you cannot go no contact, there are other ways to get them to stop bothering you.

The first one I’m going to share with you might shock you a little. But when you’re struggling with getting a narcissist out of your life because you personally don’t want to let go, then you’ve got a big problem on your hands. While you logically know they are toxic for you, trauma bonding, abuse amnesia, and feeling lonely can be big deterrents to actually letting go of the narcissist. That brings me to number one.

1. Get Justifiably Angry

I don’t know about you, but for me, the effects of anger become very physical and if I allow myself to stay angry for long, it’s not good for me or anyone else. If I stay upset for long, I find that I get sick to my stomach, I clench my jaw and give myself headaches and I tense up every muscle in my body. It’s a miserable way to live. Have you experienced the physical effects of really strong emotions before?

But despite what some toxic gurus might tell you, anger isn’t a wasted emotion, if you use it to your advantage. And, as it turns out, it doesn’t negatively affect you physically when it is actively propelling you toward a goal that will make your life better in some way. In fact, it can definitely serve a purpose in your recovery from narcissistic abuse in toxic relationships. How? Well, JUSTIFIED anger is sort of like fear with a little courage thrown in, in a way.

And if I’m being honest, ending my relationship with my narcissist was sparked by anger – I had to get angry before I could get away. Another time anger served me well was before I lost all that weight a few years ago. In order to make the long-term, difficult commitment necessary to take off 100 pounds, I had to get really mad at both myself and the world to get going.

There is such a thing as constructive anger, and it is this kind of anger that causes you to stand up and to create positive change in both yourself and your life circumstances. Sometimes, anger can help neutralize your fear and power up your gumption to get you through the hard transitions – the things you might just be afraid to conquer without that little push of emotion.

The psychology of justified anger is powerful. According to Harry Mills, Ph.D., “Anger can also be a substitute emotion. By this, we mean that sometimes people make themselves angry so that they don’t have to feel pain. People change their feelings of pain into anger because it feels better to be angry than it does to be in pain.”

You have to find a way to get angry at the narcissist for all of the horrible things they’ve done to you when you’re trying to get away from them. This will not only propel you forward and keep your eye on the goal – getting the toxic poison out of your life, but it may also shock the narcissist into realizing that you’re truly done with them. With this being said, your anger should be directed toward moving forward, not any sort of direct revenge on the narcissist. This is for two reasons: first, narcissists are dangerous and if you do anything to directly take revenge on them, you can rest assured they’ll come back at you twice as hard. And second, not only do you not need any more negative energy in your life, but the very best revenge against any narcissist is to live your life well without them, taking away the thing they need the very most: narcissistic supply – and giving yourself the peace, space and time you need to heal and live your best life.

2. Get Your Emotions in Check

Sometimes, you have to deal with the narcissist for some reason. For example, you cannot go no contact with a narcissist if you are co-parenting with one, or dealing with one at work. But what you can do is grey rock them which means you become so uninteresting that the narcissist has no other choice but to leave you alone. You literally almost “become” the gray rock itself: boring, uninteresting. The narcissist might look to pick a fight due to differences in opinion or they might just want to get a rise out of you for some reason. But if you don’t make eye contact, keep your body language under control, reply with ‘uh-huh’ or ‘hmm’ and vague one-word answers, then they will give up. Basically, you refuse to show them any emotion whatsoever. This is difficult when you first try it, but when you see it working, you’ll notice the narcissist will either be sort of shocked, or they’ll actually up their manipulation game a little at first. At this point, you should feel powerful, because you’ll know it’s working. Just hold out, and eventually, they’ll realize you’re no longer going to give them the reaction they want from you, and they’ll go bother someone else.

3. Get the Narcissist Out of Your System

This is the most difficult one of all. You can do what you can to grey rock and show no emotions but eventually, you might cave if the narcissist keeps triggering you. Part of the reason they are so good at pushing your buttons is that they installed some of them – as in, their abuse has created certain triggers in you and they are quite familiar with how to dig at you in order to get those trigger-moments flowing.

So, if you’re going to get the narcissist out of your life, you have to get them out of your head. In a way, you have to do a ‘detox’ of them so you can remove them from your thoughts, emotions, and state of being. This way, you will be unaffected by their behavior. This could require coaching or therapy as well in addition to meditation and journaling, but you can do it yourself if you’re willing to give it a shot.

It does not matter whether you have to deal with them or have gone no contact with them. You just want to get them out of your energy field. Because if you come across one even if you do so after going no contact, and they see they are no longer getting to you like they once did, then that will be powerful to you. They will see that you aren’t bothered by them genuinely. They will also leave you alone if they really do see you are not vulnerable to them.

To do your own narcissist detox, start with your personal space. Remove anything that reminds you of the narcissist. If you’re living in the same space you shared with the narcissist, consider replacing or rearranging the furniture and decor in a new way. Wash the curtains (or replace them, if you can) and change the comforter on your bed. Switch things up.

Remember: One of the most surprising side effects for narcissistic abuse survivors can be struggling with clutter and motivation.

4. What if the narcissist won’t leave your house?

In a lot of cases, the narcissist will refuse to leave your home, even when the relationship has been officially declared to be over. This is often an issue of control – because the narcissist knows that leaving the home will mean a more permanent disconnection of narcissistic supply, and they want to remain in control as long and as much as possible. If this is the case for you, there are things you can do.

First, if you own the home and the narcissist has a job outside the home, or any other reason they leave at scheduled times, you could pack up everything they own, put it in a storage locker and pay one months’ rent on it. Then change the locks on your place and tape a note explaining where their stuff is, along with the storage locker key. Alternatively, you could go through the legal eviction process in your area.

If the narcissist owns the home, or you own the home together, you may need to either prepare to move, or to get your attorney involved in getting them out of the house. If physical abuse becomes an issue, you should contact the police after the incident and be sure to press charges. This could buy you a bit of time to get a restraining order and move their things out of the house into that storage locker we talked about. In any case, be aware of the eviction laws where you live in case the narcissist tries to get litigious with you.

In any case, getting a narcissist to leave you alone takes work and emotional discipline, but it can be done and you can be free of them, even if you are unable to go no contact. What do you think? Can you relate?

Question of the day: Have you struggled to get a narcissist to leave you alone, and if so, how did you manage to make it happen? Are you struggling with it now? Share your thoughts, share your ideas, share your experiences in the comments section below this video, and let’s talk about it.

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