“A narcissist is similar to a hoarder in that they collect people not things. They view people as objects, meant to be used, they serve as either a supply, potential supply, or they have no purpose. ” ~Donna Hines
Have you ever heard of a narcissistic harem? Or maybe you’re even a part of one, knowingly or otherwise?
What is a Narcissistic Harem?
So, the term “narcissistic harem” actually means a group or “collection” of friends/admirers (AKA sources of narcissistic supply) that a narcissist gathers up to keep him topped up on his daily supply of love and admiration.
Does a narcissistic harem always involve sex with every member?
No, not at all – in fact, one of your narcissist’s biggest cheerleaders might be his own mother. It can also involve people of the same sex in some situations, even if the narcissist isn’t gay.
Put more simply, a narcissistic harem is a group of people who are happy to stroke the ego of the narcissist as needed.
Do the “members” of this harem always know about each other?
In some cases, yes – it’s a matter of who the narcissist considers part of his “inner circle,” such as friends, family members and coworkers.
But these days, it can also involve a number of “virtual” friends in the form of an online harem – and those can sometimes be the most dangerous, because they are the most underhanded and easy to hide – plus, it’s much easier to manipulate a person’s perception if they’re only seeing your world through your eyes – and a smart narc will sniff this out quickly.
The Narcissistic Harem Hierarchy
Of course, every harem has a certain order, and the narcissist’s harem is no different. Here are the kinds of roles you’ll usually find in a narcissistic harem.
The Leader of the Pack
You guessed it – this is the narcissist. He’s the organizer, the judge, the jury – all of the big bossy parts – those are him. He focuses on gathering up plenty of attention and on reminding everyone how difficult his life is, and how much he needs them to “not hurt him like all the others,” among other manipulative topics.
Among the members are such roles as:
This special member of the harem has an important role. She’s there to not only “get” the narcissist in her own clutches, but also to cause drama for the rest of the members. She lives on a pedestal built by the narcissist and they often claim they “just haven’t met the right person yet.” The narc considers this person a challenge because she, like he, is unlikely to commit, so she seems hard to get.
In the case of the narcissistic harem, the flying monkeys often mean well, but they end up evangelizing the narc’s message without even realizing it. Flying monkeys are often just other causalities of the narc’s manipulation tactics, but they’re always falling for it.
The Old Standby
This can be an ex or a person who is just generally “there” for the narcissist when he needs attention. Generally ends up causing drama, especially when the Tool finds out about her. (Narcissists have a way of “recycling” their relationships, after all.)
Depending on the narc, there’s almost always a partner – a “main” person in the harem. While the partner isn’t always a legal spouse or even the one who gets the most attention in the narcissist’s harem, she’s the one they’re all hiding the secrets from – and maybe the worst role you can be stuck with.
“No Contact doesn’t mean No Contact except for x, y, and z. By No Contact, I mean NO — zero, nada, zilch — Contact. To use Freshmen Orientation parlance: No means no.” ~Shrink4Men.com
Why is it so hard to go no contact with a narcissist?
So, you’re considering going “no contact” with your narcissist. And, you’re on your way to finally taking back your life. But, are you ready to leave? Have you already left, or are you still trying to decide what to do?
But, as I’m assuming you know, that’s a whole lot easier said than done, especially when the person in question is a close friend, family member, or significant other. And, if you’re honest, what you REALLY want to know is exactly what is causing you to want the narcissist still when they were so terrible and abusive to you, right?
In any case, you need to know something important: it’s not your fault that you feel so drawn to your abuser. Not technically, anyway. Walking away from a narcissist is going to take more than willpower. Let me explain.
What does it mean to go ‘No Contact’ with a narcissist?
If you’re not aware of what “no-contact” means in reference to narcissistic relationships, let’s start by defining it.
The No Contact Rule, Defined
Simply put, the “no contact” rule is enacted when you end ALL contact with a pathological narcissist or toxic person. This includes but isn’t limited to the following.
Stop taking the narcissist’s phone calls.
Block them on all social media networks.
Do not schedule or encourage visits with the narcissist.
Stop seeing, speaking to, or in any way interacting with them.
It’s not rocket science. Then why is it so difficult to enact and then to stick to the no contact rule?
Toxic Love Addiction: The Main Reason Why Going No Contact is So Hard
Logically, you know you shouldn’t do things that are bad for you – like drugs. And toxic people who are bad for our lives – we all know we need to get/stay away. But, unfortunately, it’s just not always so easy.
Romantic love stimulates the same area of the brain as addiction.
According to researchers, we’re biologically predisposed to this kind of behavior. See, there’s an evolutionary spin here – the loss of a potential baby-making mate would be bad for us as a species. On top of that, humans are hard-wired to develop bonds with other humans – another survival urge. Of course, in unhealthy relationships, this leads to trauma bonding.
Add together your biological need to bond and the need to keep your mate (or to feel great distress in the loss of them), and what do you have?
Narcissistic abuse leads to dysfunction and codependence.
It affects you like a drug, your relationship with this toxic person. And when you’re not getting the sweet poison, you might miss it. A lot like a crack addict might miss his fix. When you think of it like that, you must see that you’re not the problem here. You must see that only you can create change in your life and that only you can take the steps you need to take to take back your life. You deserve to be happy. Don’t forget that.
How do you stop being addicted to the narcissist?
These researchers are helping us to connect some pretty amazing stuff, if you ask me. Stopping your addiction will be a process that is as complicated and difficult as trying to stop any other addiction, plus you’ll be launching a whole new “normal” in your life by ending a relationship in the process. It’s not going to be easy. But I promise it’s worth the effort, and you most definitely will not regret it when you are finally living in peace and tasting freedom from the toxicity you deal with when you’re connected to the narcissist in your life.
The process might involve therapy and/or working with a coach. You might choose to go it your own. Maybe you’ve got a friend or family member who understands and wants to help. But if you don’t, you wouldn’t be alone. That’s why we’ve created a simple, convenient way to support you and our other fellow narcissistic abuse survivors to get support during narcissistic abuse recovery. You can join one of our free online narcissistic abuse recovery groups and get support and advice from people who understand.
“Live simply, love generously, care deeply, speak kindly, leave the rest to God.” ~Ronald Reagan
A few years ago, I drove to a different town to do a series of political candidate interviews I’m working on for one of my local news writing jobs.
The first interview was with a candidate who called himself a Reagan conservative republican. I’m not very political by nature, but I think in general, some of my beliefs and ideas would be considered pretty liberal. Even so, I could definitely identify and connect with this man.
The Definition of Soulmates
In addition to all of the political stuff, the candidate talked a lot about his wife, who unexpectedly passed away more than a decade ago.
He told me that he hadn’t changed a thing in the home she decorated, and then he told me the story of their epic love.
Even now, more than a decade later, the love shone brightly in his eyes as he spoke of his beautiful wife. He showed me pictures of her and talked about their children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren.
Since they’d married young–he was 20, she was 18–they had planned to celebrate their 75th wedding anniversary together.
Goodnight, Sweetheart, It’s Time to Go
They were married for nearly 40 blissful years when his wife had a terrible headache one night and went to bed.
The candidate said he tried to take her to the hospital because the headache seemed so severe–in fact, he tried three times, but each time his wife refused, preferring to stay in the comfort of her own home.
She wasn’t even sick, as far as they knew, and the next morning, he left her to sleep as he went about his morning routines.
One of his daughters called him that morning, around 7:15 am. She asked after her mother, and the candidate told her she was asleep.
His daughter then asked him a question that, to this day, he has no idea why she’d ask–was her mother breathing?
The candidate said of course she was, but when he hung up, he thought about how strange it was that his daughter would say something like that. He went into the bedroom to check on his wife and found her there, unresponsive. He said she couldn’t be moved.
He called 911 and the paramedics, fire department and police arrived soon after. He said that much of the rest of the day was a blur, as he was understandably quite traumatized by the whole situation.
But he did remember that he tried to go into the bedroom to see her again. He was not allowed into the room, so he paced the floors of the family room where they’d spent so many happy hours together. He waited, and finally learned that she’d been declared dead.
One True Love: Soulmates are Forever
Since the death of his beloved wife, the candidate hasn’t even had the desire to date anyone else.
He said there was only one true love for him, his soulmate, his wife. He also mentioned that he had grown closer to his children since then and told me that his wife had done such an amazing job raising them.
She had been the primary caregiver as a stay-at-home mom while he worked to support the family.
The look on his face as he talked about his wife was indescribable. He was clearly still in love with her, even thirteen years after she’d passed away–theirs was a love that truly transcended even death.
Honestly, I was moved almost to the point of tears by the depth of his love for her.
In addition to getting a glimpse inside of an amazing love story, the thing that really struck me about this man is that, even though he lost the love of his life so unexpectedly, he was still so very grateful for everything that they’d been given in life.
He made it very clear that even now, he feels very grateful for the life he has been given, he is all about love. Love is the answer, he said, to everything.
That day, I found myself feeling grateful that I had the opportunity to meet such an amazing man with such an incredible outlook on life and that he was kind enough to share it with me.
And that night, when I kissed my husband good night, I kept this political candidate’s love story in my heart and remembered to be grateful for every moment we have together.
Do you believe in soulmates? Have you met yours yet? Share your thoughts and experiences in the comments section, below!