So you’re in love with a narcissist, now what. How to navigate a relationship with a narcissist.
So you’re in love with a narcissist and wondering if it’s possible to have a healthy relationship? Well, it depends on what you view as healthy. Perhaps, the question to ask is: is it workable? and the answer is yes! If you’re in love with a narcissist, then chances are that you’re caught up in a loopy dynamic. What I mean by that is that you’re probably seeking empathy from your partner like you’ve never wanted empathy from anyone else before ever! This is because you haven’t been experiencing much of it with the person, and the less you have of something, the more you want it, right? The more you want it, the more you pour your heart out because that’s how you normally get empathy from someone, and the more you pour your heart out, the more vulnerable you become and the more you are emotionally invested in the dynamic and thus the more difficult to walk away. All the while, you are hoping that things will eventually click and you will get your emotional needs met, knowing farewell, by virtue of having identified your partner as a narcissist, that they cannot give it to you. They do not have it to give to you. So, how does one make it work with a narcissist?
Here are 5 guidelines that might help:
- Accept that empathy will not be experienced in this relationship. This is not so bad considering that empathy is only one way of getting your emotional needs met and there are other ways.
- Master the skill of give-and-take in the relationship. Know yourself, know who you really are and what you really want in a relationship. Only then can you draw clear boundaries with regard to what you would or wouldn’t take and what you would or wouldn’t give.
- Communicate effectively. From choice of words to purpose and intention, you must be firm and grounded in resolve. Conversations ought to be had in a transactional way, and without vulnerability.
- Self-care, self-care, and more self-care… seek therapy, build a support system of friends and family, take time for yourself, and engage in activities on your own that recharge and empower you.
- Stop calling your partner a narcissist! I know it’s very tempting to have them realize this about themself, and it’s so satisfying to call a spade a spade, but there’s absolutely no value in opening that can of worms if you want your relationship with a narcissist to work.