NPD does not evaporate with a change in relationship partners, counsel, nor a job change or new home, etc. There’s no new person or thing that makes the narcissist suddenly normal, rational, or better behaved. For those of us who dealt with a drug/alcohol-affected abuser, the eradication of intoxicants makes no difference–the personality disorder and its resulting abuse remain.
The disorder is ever present, and it is poured out into every relationship and interaction the narcissist has, not merely the romances–their children, parents, co-workers, service providers in the community, anyone and everyone (and yes…they are capable of manipulating therapists with their toxicity).
Loving them doesn’t melt NPD away, never has over all of the history of abusiveness in humanity, and never will. There’s no surgery, therapy, psych med, or book/video series that cures this. It does not change with new living situations or changing jobs or partners…this is permanent.
An illustration of what “hard-wired” means in the human brain: Dr. George Simon, a psychologist who specializes in personality disorders, likens full-blown personality disorders to severe Autism. The likelihood of a severely Autistic individual changing is the same as someone with a full-blown personality disorder ever-changing – none.
The Cancer Illustration
Another illustration would be to imagine he has an inoperable malignant cancerous tumor–nothing can be done to eradicate or treat this. You are literally standing in front of this person, frantically saying, “But I love you…can’t you just not have cancer?”
There was a time when you were the shiny new relationship…and some previously discarded person was in pain as you are presently. She wondered if he’d somehow be perfect with you. Was he?? And the persons before her all wondered the same thing in reverse succession, and this will go on & on now with every new victim until he dies.
Patterns speak. Patterns shout.
We glibly toss around the word “evil” and think of monsters in movies…but no, the malevolence we have witnessed is the very heart of darkness itself.
The longer a victim continues to fight the truth of this, the longer the victim suffers. It is what you tell yourself now that matters, so change your internal dialogue to factual truth.
I’m living proof that it works.
Further Resources for Dealing with and Understanding the Narcissist’s New Relationship from Our Coaches
Imagine this: you’ve left your toxic narcissist after years of mental and emotional abuse, and you’re finally starting to breathe again. You are finally free of this horrible, selfish energy and you feel like you’re a brand new person! Life is just starting to get really, really good.
And then it happens.
As you’re humming to yourself in the grocery store, you spot your former would-be soulmate two aisles over – and there’s something different about him. He seems happier, brighter. Relaxed, even. He’s laughing, talking, and even being charming. That bastard!
You’re confused. You’re hurt. You’re angry, maybe. A far cry from the man you recently knew, he’s somehow transformed himself back into the amazing guy you once loved.
(Note: I’m writing from the female perspective because 75 percent of my readers are female. With that being said, this could apply to either a male or a female narcissist.)
But seconds later, almost as if time is moving in slow motion, you realize what is happening. Your narc has found his next victim – he’s in the process of love bombing her, and for a moment, you get a front-row seat.
I know it stings. I know it hurts when you see that guy who you fell in love with re-emerging after you’re away. And I know that you wonder (at least a little bit) if somehow he was right all along – and if it really WAS just you.
Why Does the Narcissist Becomes the Person You Fell In Love With When You Leave?
Time for a reality check, my darling: you were not the problem. First, let me acknowledge that while every step in the process is very painful, this one is probably one of the most confusing. See, while the bigger part of you knows that he is never going to REALLY change, this other little part of you still loves him – or the version of him that you once believed was real. And that’s the part of him he’s parading around now – so it’s like you’re mourning “that version” of him all over again.
But let me repeat: the problem was NOT you! The problem was that the narcissist started taking you for granted. He got used to having you around. Maybe he got shiny new object syndrome, or he said life was too boring and left you to pursue whatever it was he wanted. Maybe you just finally had enough and you left him.
This is normal. And sadly for her, you already know how this story is going to go. Now, as you know, narcissists are very hard to live with, and even a reasonably intelligent person would feel ashamed that she tolerates the bullshit – so she may keep it under wraps, like you probably did. So you might never know for sure.
But if I’m in your shoes at this point, I’m going to make use of the no-contact/low-contact thing and use it to my advantage. That means block them both on Facebook so you don’t have to see it when you’re torturing yourself by stalking their profiles. It means you will not listen when some well-meaning flying monkey tries to offer you updates on him.
It means you’re going to move forward and focus ONLY on what you can control (not what you can’t), and since you couldn’t control him while you were together, you sure as hell can’t now (nor should you want to – he’s no longer your problem!).
How to Deal With Your Ex Being Perfect for a New Love
So, how do you deal with the painful reality of watching your narcissist be perfect for someone else?
The narcissist’s new supply isn’t getting a better deal.
Start by remembering what you dealt with and by recognizing what she will deal with soon enough. (And even if you’re tempted to warn your narcissist’s new supply about what she’s getting herself into, don’t do it – even if your intentions are good.)
Read more: Should I warn the new supply about the narcissist?
The narcissist isn’t as ‘fixed’ as they seem.
This is all an illusion! So, don’t sit around thinking that the narcissist’s new supply will end up getting the benefit of all the work you did trying to fix them. It doesn’t work like that. They are what they are, and even most experts will tell you: a narcissist can’t change (not for long, anyway).
Stay focused on you, and on making your own life better. You have already been tortured enough – if you let this situation keep making you miserable, you’re only allowing him to continue the abuse from afar. Take back your life, my friend, and choose to be happy, in your own way. Focus on what you can control and not what you can’t.
When you’re ready, let the anger flow – and release it.
Heal and release the anger. As one of my beautiful SPAN group members said: “Work on your healing and the layers of anger will soon disappear. One of the hardest things for me, was mourning the illusion of that perfect relationship I wanted to truly believe. Letting that go was a big step for me.”
Don’t worry that the new supply is better than you.
NEVER compare yourself to the new supply, unless it’s to feel sorry for them as you take note of the pattern that you’re thankfully no longer subjected to in your life. Don’t do yourself the disservice of trying to think they’re somehow “better” than you; the truth is that narcissists are very picky, so chances are if they “seem” better somehow, it’s only because the narcissist hasn’t completely ruined the new supply just yet.
Avoid the “what ifs” and “if only” thoughts about the narcissist.
Don’t “if only” and “what if” yourself to death. It’s common to have feelings of regret after any relationship ends, and you wouldn’t be human if you wonder what you could have done differently or whether something you did or said could have been the trigger that caused it all to go downhill. But that’s not helping you – it’s only causing you more pain – and chances are, you couldn’t have changed the situation without going completely insane trying to make him happy. Now it’s time to live in the moment and to think about how you want the future to go.
A Better Way to Deal: Move Forward Without the Narcissist (Stop Obsessing!)