Question words, question actions, but never doubt an established history of behavior patterns.
A victim of Narcissistic abuse will only see whatever a highly skilled Narcissistic abuser wants them to see and very little else, until they grow tired of holding up their mask. Eventually however, it will always fall off. Over time it will become too exhausting for them to keep holding their mask steady and in its place. They become resentful of the constant work involved in their own creation. If dealing with an “Aging Narcissist” as previously discussed, there will be an even more intense, more serious set of issues growing and developing. Co-occurring substance addictions, if present, will also further complicate and exacerbate these behavior patterns. A Narcissist will begin to (repeatedly, once again) blame their very familiar cycle of unhappiness and emptiness on their current partner, often unbeknownst to the partner if dealing with a highly skilled covert Narcissist. The current partner who was so “perfect” and everything they’d been long searching for during all those years spent with all the wrong ones, now becomes the natural scapegoat of their returning emptiness within themselves. Suddenly, the things they fell in love with and valued most about them, become the things they learn to resent and hate the most about them. They create situations and facts that do not exist in reality. The lies, the stories, the numerous tall tales eventually become tiresome, too burdensome to keep straight and to continue telling repeatedly to the same person while continuing to risk exposure. Over time after telling them for so long, they may even begin to believe these tall tales as truths themselves. It will seem easier and more exciting to the Narcissist upon reaching complete exhaustion, to begin again fresh with a new, unsuspecting source of Narcissistic supply. The path of least resistance. A clean, blank slate. A stranger. Especially if this pattern of behavior has already been established as a long running history of past behavior for the Narcissist. Then this history will begin to repeat itself once again. That’s when reality and truth will appear most clearly, without further doubt or questioning.
It’s important to know and understand the 3 Phases in the Cycle of Narcissistic Abuse and Gaslighting. Be very mindful, Phases 1 and 2 can go on virtually undetected for many years with a highly skilled and seasoned Narcissist, and when this familiar lifelong cycle is completed, it begins all over again with a new Narcissistic supply source.
Phase 1: Idealization. Mirroring, Adopting/Adapting, Integrating & Projecting. Constant “Love Bombing” tactics as previously discussed.
Phase 2: Devaluing. Subtle, Covert Emotional & Mental Abuse. Can be cleverly disguised and undetected beneath regularly stated words of “love” and affirmation, continued affection, and the narcissist’s physical expressions of “love.”
Phase 3: Sudden Discard. Emotionless, Illogical, and Without Explanation, Discussion or Empathy.
If you have reason to be suspicious, do your due diligence. Research. Question. Pay close attention. Whenever feasible, and if possible, speak to lifelong friends and acquaintances, long-time associates, bosses, relatives, neighbors, and yes if possible, even exes for their established history and patterns of behavior. Verify grandiose tales of accomplishments, successes, make sure they are theirs to tell and not borrowed tales. Check into these things to trace and uncover their behavior patterns. Investigate claims of close relationships with famous people, athletes or celebrities. These are all important red flags to look for and indicators that should not be ignored. Be very wary of the “enablers and tongue biters” who are still in the narcissist’s fold who may have ulterior motives for their steadfast positions of support for the narcissist. Be astutely aware of how to recognize Narcissistic Triangulation attempts initiated by the Narcissist between current and previous partners (or supply sources), Narcissistic Victim Blaming, and Narcissists Playing the Victim. We will be discussing these further in the future.
We will also be discussing next the individual qualities that make a person more susceptible, more likely, and more vulnerable to heavy pursuit from and eventual victimization by a narcissist. What is it that draws a narcissist to a victim? There are specific things they look for and target. It’s important to know and recognize these traits if you have them, to avoid any future abuse or successful targeting from a Narcissist, especially if you’ve been a prior victim of abuse.
In closing for now, one final thought:
A brand new broom always sweeps well, at first.