Low Risk vs High Risk Relationship Checklist

25 Dec

 

Low-Risk Signs High-Risk Signs
1 – You are attracted to him but you still maintain your own sense of self.  You share the spotlight, with mutual give and take. You are more concerned with enjoying the present moment than banking on the future rewards and happiness. You are aware of his human side and you decide to wait before making commitments. For now he is “Mr. Maybe.” 1 – He is able to cast an almost irresistible hypnotic spell which draws you toward him. You are fascinated with his charm and you love to listen to him. He quickly wants to include you in his grandiose plans and future successes. You are excited that you have finally met “Mr. Right,” since you can’t see any obvious personal flaws.
2 – This person is open and honest about his childhood and appears to have attached to a consistent loving caretaker(s) despite early childhood traumas or separations. He has resolved most of his childhood problems and can act mature and responsible. He is willing to seek counseling if needed. 2 – You can’t seem to find many specific details about his troubled childhood. He was possibly abused or neglected. He has unresolved bonding breaks: a lengthy illness of himself or a primary caretaker; or a conflicted family; a divorce, or a delayed adoption. He has unresolved childhood problems, and is frequently childish and immature.
3 – He has a good relationship with his parents – open, loving, communicative, appropriately responsible, consistent. 3 – His primary family relationships are marked by conflict and distance.  Or they seem to swing between cloying sweetness and war. These relationships may still control his life.
4 – He can both give and receive orders and is able to get along with fair bosses or teachers. Any problems with the law have been transitory and not habitual. 4 – He seems to have serious difficulty with authority figures such as bosses or law-enforcement officials. He may have had habitual run-ins with the law as a juvenile and as an adult which he may boast about. His work history is murky.
5 – He can make a friendship that lasts through thick and thin, and is willing to introduce you to his friends. His previous relationships were not all fly-by-night or of short duration. 5 – When you go out with him it’s either by yourselves or with his “new acquaintances” since he doesn’t seem to have friends who go way back. People he introduces you to early in the relationship seem to disappear later on. His past loves have not been long-lasting relationships.
6 – He displays a quiet sense of self-assurance and usually doesn’t lay “power trips” on others. He can express some humility when appropriate and likes to listen to your concerns. 6 – He appears powerful and super self-confident, almost to an exaggerated point. He definitely likes to control others through words (conning), money, or physical strength. He is egotistical and self-centered. He is either moody and quiet or very talkative.
7 – His life patterns seem stable and well-organized and you can usually reach him when needed. 7 – He comes and goes and you don’t really know where or with whom.
8 – He confronts issues openly and honestly with you and is willing to own up to his share of blame when things go wrong. He can feel your pain. 8 – You have mixed feelings about trusting him, and at times he seems sneaky. You think that he lies but he’s hard to pin down, and he won’t accept blame or express remorse when it is clearly his fault. He can sympathize but not empathize.
9 – You feel comfortable with him sexually because it’s not a constant high-pressure sales tactic. Your partner is able to balance strength with gentleness and is concerned with meeting your needs as well as his own. He can commit to one partner and doesn’t use sex as a manipulative tool. 9 – You notice that he approaches sex in an aggressive, forward way. He usually has a voracious sexual appetite, especially at first, and you sense that he has been extremely promiscuous. He acts interested in you but he is primarily interested in seeking his own pleasure rather than sharing sensitively with his partner. He may become rough and interested in sado-masochistic practices. (Note: females are extremely seductive, flirtatious, and manipulative with their sexuality.)
10 – He can be spontaneous and exciting but he’s also stable. You note that his previous work history has added some continuity, purpose, and meaning to his life. His personal goals seem realistic and achievable and he is self-confident enough to take well-thought-out calculated risks. 10 – He seems impulsive and unsettled and rarely carries through on projects, saying he is now moving on to “bigger fish.” He is always looking for more stimulation and excitement and takes unbelievable chances. His job history and education are usually scattered and unfinished, although he says that’s his choice.
11 – One of the things that impresses you is his ability to share and exhibit more genuine kindness to others than they actually may deserve. He can display caring without having to get something back because it makes him feel good. 11 – You realize that he is manipulative, controlling and conning toward others and rarely displays kindness unless it’s for direct personal gain. He may be kind to a cute waitress or sales client but is abusive and cold to a male waiter or a clerk. He is shallow and superficial.
12 – Finances are balanced with other concerns. He is fair and reasonable about money matters and willing to be generous at times without making a big deal about it. He tries to pull his own weight with chores, and doesn’t want to borrow money he can’t legitimately pay back. He shares his material items and respects your individuality. 12 – He appears closer to money than anything else. He is either tightly controlling and stingy with material items, letting you know how much everything costs, or he is parasitic in wanting to live off your labor. Be especially careful if he want to borrow or invest large sums of your money. He believe that he owns you and is extremely possessive and jealous.
13 – Although he may not be a teetotaler, he doesn’t abuse himself with drugs. He doesn’t need drugs to escape or to be able to relate intimately with you. His temper is controllable and not abusive. He can argue without resorting to threats or violence. 13 – Be careful if he regularly consumes any drug, including alcohol, even if he tells you it’s recreational and he can take it or leave it. Addictions are easy to cover at first so beware of mood changes. Be especially aware if he has a short fuse and displays indications of violent behavior.
14 – He may or may not belong to a church but he has a deep appreciation and reverence for the spiritual side of life. He is sustained by his faith in love and goodness. His sense of humor may be offbeat, but it isn’t cruel. 14 – He may profess a religion but his actions indicate that he secretly delights in aligning with evil and the dark side of life. You sense that he has a cruel nature inside because he smiles at people’s misfortune and pain.
15 – You love him because he demonstrates in words and deeds that he can be trusting and loving. You like yourself enough to associate only with someone who can enhance the quality of your life and gradually, but realistically, grow into “Mr. Right.” 15 – Finally, he is so believable and charming that despite many obvious high-risk symptoms you think that the problems between you are as much your fault as his and you just have to “love him” more to make a difference, even though deep inside you know he is Mr. Wrong.

 

 

 

Fight the GOOD Fight

25 Dec

Battling a narcissist and their lies is an exhausting battle.


Im a person who gets exhausted by fighting. That’s all that existed for the 3 years I was involved with the self centered, reality twisting narcissist. I fought to save my sanity, earn the respect I deserved, have my feelings honored, my questions about my future answered, and my boundaries respected.

TO NO AVAIL.

My mind body and soul were ready to move on 12 months ago. The narc had other plans:  If I wasnt going to keep quiet about the REAL him being revealed, then he was going to “show” me by exacting his rage and fury by using proxies and the legal system to shut me up. I always said I’d STOP telling the truth about him, if he stopped LYING about me.  I know better than to try and bargain with a narcissist however;  as its nothing more than negotiating with the devil.

I was forced to fight a fight I didnt choose to engage in, but had to in order to fight for principal, TRUTH and my own self preservation.  The future holds a couple of other fights with the dirty narc that targeted me, but I’m prepared.

The one thing I know for sure is that I will never again engage in a futile argument with the narc that targeted me as well as all the other narcissists running freely rampant in our every day lives.  I will no longer allow my character, my word, my truth, my actions, my integrity, my mental health, my motivations, intentions and godliness to be up for debate.

Just because people don’t believe the truth doesn’t make it a lie – Just as people believing a lie doesn’t make it the truth.

The Evil I Experienced:

5 Aug

The intense jealousy over ANYone of the opposite sex.

Telling me how guy friends only talked to me because they wanted to have sex with me, telling me even though I was SOOO STINKING LOYAL and In love with him, that I had too many men. (he was married)

He paid my children for the passwords to my emails so he could spy on me, he hacked my and my kid’s email to erase all traces of our relationship.

He publicly lied that I was a stalker who fabricated our relationship based on what I heard through the air waves. (all the while professing his undying soul mate love for me, telling me he was leaving his wife)

He subjected me to the silent treatment at times for weeks until I did what he said. He told me that he’d resume talking to me when I removed the “evil” from my facebook. He was talking about the fact that I was friends with another victim of his on facebook; a former co-worker.

When I was late once from getting him a Christmas gift, he accused me of being out “cheating on him”.

He filed an injunction of harrassment  stating that I threatened to drown his children & that I was a stalker who he “never had a relationship with” (SMEAR CAMPAIGN)

He had security accompany he and his coworkers because he had a ‘crazy stalker’

He threatened to have me fired from jobs and created a website about me, LYING that I was addicted to Meth.

There’s SOOOOO MUCH MORE he did to me its unfathomable.

I want to FORGIVE him for all of it.

Im out now, FREE; A FREE woman, which is all I ever wanted if I wasn’t going to be loved in a healthy manner.

I want to let go of these awful, traumatic experiences. Im out now. I dont have to go through the rigamarole. Im in a safe place. I feel healthier, happier, more stable and downright fulfilled in all areas of my life than I’ve ever felt. I wouldn’t trade this for ANYTHING.

Dear God, take this resentment from me and allow me to forgive _________’s  trespasses.

Im humbled,

NewLife

Life After the Narcissist

17 Jul

Pain is a motivator.

It’s downright terrifying when the relationship with the narcissist ends. The realization of what we were involved in and the degree to which we realized we’ve given our identity away for mere exploitation is unfathomable. The nice news is that there is an inverse relationship between depth of pain and propensity for change.

Once FREE, I began the daunting but rewarding journey of searching the depths of my soul.  I stepped up and took full responsibility for the way I allowed the narcissist to make such inroads into my psyche.  I realized how more than anything, BOUNDARIES were necessary to protect my identity.

I began by accepting every emotion I had; even if I judged it as being “good or bad”.  I stopped denying how awful I felt and started being compassionate towards myself. The attention to my own feelings for the first time in years, allowed me to train myself to be comfortable with honoring myself.

Once on the road to honoring all my feelings, I began taking responsibility for all the cracks in my character that allowed the narc to set up shop in my world.  Why was I so desperate for love?  Why would I accept less than respectful treatment?  Why would I give up all the things I loved about myself and my life to try to please another person?  Why did I not respect my own rights and follow through with consequences when the narc busted my boundaries again? Why did I ignore all the red flags?  Why did I stay with the relationship once I knew how toxic it felt to me?

Everyday for nearly 6 months, I lived asking myself questions that sometimes, I had ZERO answers for.  It took a lot of faith and hope that it would get better. Sometimes at night, I’d lay crying myself to sleep and calling out to God to just please comfort me through the pain.

My answers came in my own self reliance.  The more I spoke and honored my true feelings without judgment, I embraced myself with acceptance.  The more self acceptance and compassion I showed towards myself the more my actions reflected that I deserved it. I learned to not let anyone, EVER, treat me less than how I treat myself. This alone weeded out so many undesirable characters because I was no longer desperate enough to be willing to settle.

This has been my saving grace, because I’ve stepped up to others and asserted my boundaries. I was fully prepared to walk away from any person who did not respect what I asserted; surprisingly, THIS VERY ACT and the fact that I TRULY was able to walk away – CHANGED MY WORLD.

We may have been targeted but that doesn’t seal our fate forever.

Our choices in the aftermath determine our path.

Let’s make good ones.

Blessings,

NewLife

Narcissism and Codependence Checklist

10 Jul
 

If you are caught in a cycle of fighting with your partner, the terms

Narcissism & Codependence may be very helpful for you to understand

Symptoms of Narcissism

  1. Bullet ‘Two faced’ putting people down (including family and friends) behind their back.
  1. Bullet  A tendency to Blame their lack of success, disappointments and failures on others.
  1. Bullet  A different person in private than in public.
  1. Bullet  Irresponsible and unreliable (often trading off others hard work).
  1. Bullet  Arrogant, acting superior to people close to them (often putting their family down).
  1. Bullet  Lives in a fantasy world which may include porn, romance novels, flirting and/or affairs and/or dreams of unlimited fame and success.
  1. Bullet  Will often be addicted to this fantasy oriented behavior.
  1. Bullet  May have other addictions such as alcohol, tobacco, gambling, drugs, shopping, computer games and/or sex.
  1. Bullet  Will lie and distort facts and change the events of history to suit their own agenda.
  1. Bullet  May misappropriate funds and be irresponsible with money.
  1. Bullet  Distant and emotionally unavailable unless they want something.
  1. Bullet  Will lack empathy for others, especially people who they exploit.
  1. Bullet  Will be very controlling and often unable to relax.
  1. Bullet  May appear very charming and even humble in public.
  1. Bullet  May regularly provoke people and them blame them for the fight.
  1. Bullet  Will have trouble admitting their mistakes.

Symptoms of Codependence

  1. Bullet May need help from others to deal with their emotional states – needing help to “cheer up” and feel good about themselves or to get over setbacks and disappointments.
  1. Bullet  Will take a long time to calm down after becoming upset.
  1. Bullet  Will need their partner’s approval to feel good about themselves or feel able to move on with their own goals or plans.
  1. Bullet  May not know how to handle people who disrespect them or put them down.
  1. Bullet  May expect people (who they obviously shouldn’t trust) to be kind and play fair.
  1. Bullet  Will often misinterpret and/or be at the mercy of their moods and emotions.
  1. Bullet  May be addicted to alcohol, tobacco and/or prescription medication and drugs.
  1. Bullet  May blame their addictions on the abusive behavior of others in their life.
  1. Bullet  May be obsessed with their relationship with their partner.
  1. Bullet  May complain a lot and expect their partner to take the lead in improving their life.
  1. Bullet  May long for a hero to ‘save’ them.

Please Note: These are not diseases and there are no drugs specific to treating the conditions above, nor should the descriptions here be used for any kind of professional diagnosis.

Narcissism (Describing the traits of Narcissistic Personality Disorder)

A person with these tendencies will be two-faced; charming and polite in public, while critical, rude, arrogant, sarcastic and passive/aggressive in private; usually to the people who are closest to them and who give them the most love and care.

This person will pretend to have high standards, but in reality will be low in perfectionism: resulting in them being flakey, hypocritical or even an outright phony or fake. They will not follow through on promises and may trade off others’ hard work or reputation. They will spend most of their energy seeking people who will admire them or who they can vent their negativity and aggression on, either directly by put downs, sarcasm or passive/aggression (trying to provoke a fight so they can vent their own aggression) or  by talking people down (friends included).

A person with narcissistic tendencies will shift blame and may become aggressive if anyone attempts to hold them accountable for their actions. They will not accept responsibility for their own failings and instead blame their mistakes and/or bad behavior on the shortcomings of others.

Sexually they may seduce and abandon partners including the person they marry; this may also be a cover for performance anxiety. There is often a pattern of seducing and abandoning lovers, friends or people they can make their ‘fans’. (Note: some narcissists are completely cerebral and will think themselves “above sex” altogether and instead pride themselves on their intelligence and academic achievements or they may pride themselves on being ‘unwinable’).

A lack of empathy, combined with high self interest and mixed with a particular cunning charm and ability to manipulate others will make a person with these tendencies a difficult and potentially abusive person to live with. They will think nothing of exploiting their partner financially, sexually or otherwise, while blaming their own weaknesses and shortcomings on this very same person.

Someone with these traits may also hinder any attempt by their partner to regain their sense of strength or self worth and try and stop them getting back on their feet or on with their life (or getting away). They may even encourage their partner but then ‘knock them down again’ when they get back on their feet (like Lucy is towards Charlie Brown in ‘the Peanuts’).

NPD is a disorder and not a disease. There is no blood test for Narcissistic Personality Disorder and three different professionals may diagnose the same person in three different ways. The description is useful as it describes a familiar pattern of behavior in an individual which can be very pervasive.

Most importantly a Narcissist is a human being acting in a particular way and should not be treated like a monster, or worse, as an ‘it’ rather than a person. As unfair and damaging as a relationship with this type of person may be, we believe it more useful (and healthy) to use straightforward descriptive words about their bad behavior, rather than relying on this term generally to describe them. It would be more correct and useful in most situations for instance to say “Lucy lied to me”  than “Lucy is an N or Lucy is a narcissist.”.

As common as the suggestion is that you must run or “get away” from this type of person, we believe it is important for family members of someone with these tendencies to learn to stand up for themselves and hold their ground. This response can be highly beneficial for the person with narcissistic traits as well. This behavior will not improve on it’s own however and it is a big mistake to expect the narcissistic partner in a relationship or family to be the one responsible for ‘changing’.

Codependence

Codependence is a term used by psychologists to describe a whole range of characteristics and behaviors and many disagree on exactly what this term describes.

We have found the term codependence useful to describe the following characteristics;

Someone with these tendencies will feel responsible for the feelings of others and believe that they need to be involved in helping resolve the negative feelings of the people they are close to.

If someone is upset with them (or in a bad mood) a codependent will have trouble staying focused on their own life and goals and may feel that their partners unhappiness reflects that they have somehow failed (“If he loved me he would be happy all of the time”).

A person with codependent tendencies happiness and goals will be very closely tied to others estimation of them. They will look for validation, reassurance and encouragement in anything they take on and will often seek this from people who are the most unlikely to give them this type of support. They may also expect support from a partner without asking and be angry if their partner does not guess what they need. They may also believe that someone guessing their needs is a sign of love.

Codependence is about emotional dependence and someone with these tendencies will have a hard time functioning if they are not in a relationship and will often put their need for a relationship with a life partner before their own needs, security and goals.

A person with codependent tendencies will also have trouble processing their own emotions and will expect help to feel better after becoming upset and will often fail to take the time to honestly take notice of what their emotions are signaling about things that may require work or attention in their life.

They may have worked hard at ‘keeping a parent happy’ while they grew up, while never being allowed to talk about the real cause of that parents emotional instability (e.g.. alcoholism, depression, gambling or drug addiction). This conditioning will leave this person an easy target for abuse as they grow older.

Summary

Most abusive relationships feature a dance of Narcissism and Codependence between the two partners (to some degree). Stereotypes portray men as more generally narcissistic and women codependent but this is certainly not always the case. The two sets of behavior (which we believe are both forms of immaturity) play into each other and each partner blames the other instead of facing their own need to grow up.

A couple may also (in different situations) swap roles. Alcohol for instance will trigger narcissistic behavior in some people.

Narcissists rarely seek help and instead blame others for their problems, where codependents tend to know that something is wrong and will blame themselves (more than they should) and spend a lot of time working on ‘fixing’ themselves. For this reason, our advice focuses primarily on helping people learn to deal with their codependent tendencies and learn to set better boundaries and hold their spouse accountable, while also working on their own emotional maturity. It is our experience that these changes can in fact help both partners. It should be stressed however that this does not mean that the codependent is responsible for their partner’s bad behavior or abuse or that a person with narcissistic tendencies cannot work on improving the way they relate to others. We do have material available to help with this too.

We feel very strongly that this is the best first option in helping abusive couples resolve their fighting because a couple separating will usually leave the underlying problem unresolved and after separating in many cases each partner will end up in another abusive relationship and the terrain may then become even more dangerous and difficult for themselves and their children.

In Other Words….

24 Jun

A list of words to describe a Narcissist:

Charming, arrogant, snob, name dropper, shallow, sly, self serving, assertive, socially poised, confident, hero, hero worshiper, bully, actor, verbose, cliquish, controlling, stud, vamp, God’s gift to women or men, born leader, brain, charismatic, conniving, convincing, living in fantasy world, pathological liar, vain, superior, arrogant, brash, ego centric, unpleasant, condescending, power-seeking, devious, patronizing, nasty spoiled kid, impeccable manners, offish, driven, innovative, disruptive, jealous, clannish, cliquish, gossipy, best friend, worst enemy, effusive, complimentary, critical, back stabbing, selfish, self centered, self important, spotlight hog, always talks about them self, ignores other people’s feelings, know it all, bully, liar, manipulator, always right, never apologizes, never acts grow up, Peter Pan, spoiled, child like, cold, effusive, intelligent, loves to talk about themselves, wants to be center of attention, wants the best office etc, Drama Queen, King Pin, has to keep up with the Jones, has to have latest or biggest or most expensive thing to impress others, romantic, cold hearted, hyper-sexual, not interested in sex, sadistic, unemotional, over reacts, angry, yells, screams, demands immediate recognition and service, preferential treatment, throws tantrums, over bearing, can switch from being super nice to nasty in a second, acts like a queen or princess if a woman, or like a super macho if a man, Fame junkies. They are obsessed with the fantasy of unlimited success, power, brilliance and ideal love and beauty. They only associated with important people. They lack affect, they often look into mirrorwis…

What are YOURS?

Wishing you happy filled days with peaceful nights,

NewLife

FEELING healthy

19 Jun

The months spent in recovery prior to developing a new relationship are dark. Inspiring; yet dark.

I spent months not trusting ANYONE. Even my closest friends. I felt safe with them, yet on edge and skeptical. Its common after the narcissist rips through your soul to be on guard against any further intrusions.  After cocooning inside myself for self soothing and rediscovering my identity, I emerged stronger.

As a stronger woman, I KNOW more of who I am after fighting hard to rebuild my self worth. I really relearned what makes me, ‘ME’.  I know what I like and don’t like. I know how much space makes me feel happy. I relish my alone time. I engage with my passions. I speak my truth. (after having been silenced for so long) I do what I want, when I want, with who I want and feel however I choose to feel as a result.

WHAT DOES THIS ALL MEAN?

Ive got my healthy back!

As a result, I started dating.  I figured that there was no other area where I’d be able to exercise my new healthy muscles in what had become a former landmine of explosive possibilities with the Narc:  a RELATIONSHIP.

I had a few experiences that taught me how to say, “NO!” I learned how to disentangle quickly to avoid any damage to my self.  I’ve reinforced what’s important to ME in a relationship.  A healthy relationship is one where:

1. I feel comfortable

2. I am being myself; nothing more, nothing less

3. I am saying NO (asserting my boundaries) when I choose to and feel them being respected

4. I have NO desire to change him, just appreciate who he is – while still recognizing he’s not perfect – just different

5. I feel like a separate person with separate interests, passions, time spent pursuing my individual desires

6. I dont feel enmeshed

7. When my separateness boundary is crossed, I feel it immediately and express my feelings to him on the spot. Im not letting grass grow under my  superficial “it’s oks”

8. I respect his boundaries too: his right to Feel, Think, say and behave as he chooses

9. My view of our relationship is that we are 2 separate individuals that look outward towards the world; not codependently at eachother

10. I am experiencing my “LIVE AND LET LIVE” motto while enjoying the companionship and romance

What about you? What do you describe as Healthy in a Relationship?

Let’s FOCUS more on what’s healthy and reap what we sow, letting that Narc fade FAR AWAY into our histories!

Peace be with you,

New Life

Grief Resurfaced

15 Jun

I recycled through my grief over the past week. The pain of the narcissistic relationship I was in resurfaced.

I hadn’t felt anything strong or particularly relevant to my X Narc…I was triggered by unrelated grief.  I wanted everything just to be NORMAL.

Have you felt that? Where you’re so TIRED of processing things? Of analyzing yourself and the aftermath in fear that you won’t be prepared if it happens again?

I cycled through all the grief really fast; without shedding a tear, but still…How easily I could lose all sense of knowledge I have about who the narcissist REALLY is in favor of who I wanted him to be. (a loving, genuine guy; a stand up guy)  The truth is I was involved with a CON who pulled the wool over my eyes and called it “love”.

By the way, It’s not that I feel “foolish” about that, but so DEEPLY HURT. I really “loved’ that person. Id certainly never given up my heart, mind and soul to a person before; not like that.  In the end, seeing that his personality disturbance turned it into just a big fake charade is the most hurtful thing to my genuine, loving nature. It’s not an ego thing either; but a violent assault on my gentle heart.

I digress….

All this being said, you can see I’ve been mulling over the hurt again and have consequently felt sad and helpless; as a result, I really want to let go now.  Peacefully, calmly and with resignation: LET GO.

With that, I’d like to challenge all of you who are still harboring feelings of hurt and resentment towards the raw deal the narc dished out to you….. that you surrender and LET GO with me.

Let’s LET GO and make room for a brand NEW LIFE!

Boundaries In REAL Life

12 Jun

I get it! I finally get what boundaries look & feel like.

I’d read about boundaries and heard the jargon throughout my coming of age in relationships; but I never quite GOT how you go about asserting them in a relationship as it’s growing. I want to share some of my REALizations.

The beginning of relationships are so full of “promise” and excitement that we really don’t like to stop to respond to warning bells when they ring. Who wants to interrupt feeling like Cleopatra, Cinderella and Angelina Jolie all rolled into one to set a silly boundary!!???

Granted, it’s not very sexy to slow things down and use our heads, but that’s EXACTLY what we should be doing before we go headlong into rose colored glassesville and miss the important boundary setting that needs to take place at the beginning of a relationship when things are very clear and so eagerly adhered to.

By having our wits about us, and making some rational declarations about what we do and don’t like (boundaries) we can teach this new person who we are, what’s important to us and where we end and they begin.  Think of it this way, if we DON’T teach someone that we have clearly defined limits to ourselves, we are in for a LONG road of trying to “unteach” them the things we can’t stand, when we’re comfortable enough to “get real”.  Imagine our partners dismay when they notice, that “suddenly” we are bothered by things that we used to laugh and giggle about.

BOUNDARIES: Being strong enough to lift our partners baggage back up after they tossed it over our fence and throw it back in their yard.

We are who we are. The more we come to accept and embrace who we are, we’ll be less inclined to change with the breeze. With finely established preferences and things that drive us batty, we know what we will and will not accept in terms of another’s behavior and words towards us.  If we are the type of people who need space after an argument, we are going to need a partner who will respect that we need a cooling off period before they begin trying to discuss the issue.

It does not serve us in the long run to pretend to be okay with certain behaviors because we fear losing a person or fear their disapproval.  That just indicates that we have more work to do on ourselves before we’re ready for a relationship.  Desperation is not a good position for finding healthy love.

We want to be with others who are healthy enough to not only respect our boundaries, but who define and assert their own.  It’s a nice feeling when someone shows me what their boundaries are and I consciously say I need to respect them more than I need to insist on my own way.  It’s a two way street and boundary busting is just as dysfunctional from either partner.

Like attracts like.

There are 4 elements of responsibility that are protected by boundaries:

1. Thinking

2. Acting

3. Speaking

4. Feeling

As well, there are a few different areas that boundaries protect:

1. Physical

2. Mental

3. Emotional

4. Spiritual

5. Sexual

Within each of these areas, we’ve got preferences and prejudices. Rules governing touch, how we argue, what we think, ways we process, how emotional we are, how comfortable we are with others emotions, our spiritual or religious beliefs and evaluations, our sexual code of conduct, when we first have sex, how monogamous we like to be, etc.

Each one of these “rules” we have with our thoughts, feelings, actions and words regarding the 5 areas will tell us WHO WE ARE.

When one of these “rules” gets “crossed” by another person, we have reactions ranging from mild annoyance to white hot rage.

Here’s an example:

We have a belief that we wont become sexual before 1 month of dating.  Our thought is that people who have sex earlier than that risk not getting to know eachother and thus could reduce the chances of a successful relationship.

Our partner, a very passionate person, really “wants” to have sex sooner. When we inform our partner what our thoughts and beliefs are about this topic, we are asserting our boundary. However we convey our thought and desire about sex, we are asserting our boundary. If this is of great importance to us, any “crossing” of the boundary will cause a strong reaction.

If we ignore the strong feeling and proceed anyway, appeasing our mates to keep them happy or because we fear losing them, we’ve just done a grave disservice to our relationship, partner and self.

If our partner INSISTS on pressuring us to have sex, ridiculing our thought that it makes for a shaky start, they’ve crossed over our “thought” boundary which will likely cause a feeling of anger or frustration.

The more we get to know what we like and don’t like and listen to our guts when things go “awry”, the more power we have to share this knowledge with our partners to set clear, firm boundaries.

Keep in mind, not EVERYTHING is a battling issue. Some boundaries are less important to adhere to and with flexibility can possibly be renegotiated without causing a loss of self.

Stay healthy and keep asserting your boundaries!

NewLife

Night Terrors

31 May

You know the kind of dreams that make you PRAY that it’s only a dream? Add a big old fat Narc in it, and what do you get?

       

What I had last night! A full blown NIGHT TERROR! 

I haven’t had dreams about the narc for MONTHS. I thought I was past that; afterall, he rarely crosses my mind and then only as an example of how grateful I am I’m no longer around him. Last night was different. Maybe it was the wine, maybe he now represents everything bad.

The recurring feelings throughout the dream, were intense anxiety and the desire to escape, but being unable to.

Does that combo jar any emotions for you?

I felt paralyzed & terrified! I was back in the relationship; in its grips.  I couldn’t breath or speak properly. (my quieted voice) He was in full force Narc mode: “mind games”, push-pull, passive aggressive, pathological jealousy, mistrust. It felt suffocating and ridden with being unsettled.   I saw through the “image” as a smokescreen he used to hide his underlying demons. I wanted to BOLT. I kept my decorum about me, then ran like hell.

When I woke up I was disoriented, drained and RELIEVED. I wasn’t stuck. I’m not stuck. I woke up. We woke up. Our dreams and terrors show us our own ‘demons’ we’re processing.  As we work through the stages of healing, especially after our trauma ridden relationships with narcs, it’s common to let our subconscious act out these ‘paralyzed’  Othellos of our souls to cleanse us and show us our own mastery of the buried fear and anxiety narcs caused in our lives from a safe point of view.  (That could be my optimism showing)  ;)

Whether it’s an empirical truth or my own attempt to make sense of this crazy experience, I know that after the nightmare, I was far happier to again be without narc than I was ever happy to be with him.

The dream. The horrific nightmare that xnarc was back in my life and I was back in the passenger seat while crazy drove me around town.  Ahhhh, the beauty of waking up.  We get the chance to start all over only this time build things with people that build with us.

Many deep cleansing breaths,

NewLife

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