I spent 7 years in a relationship with someone who I now identify as a Narcissist. It followed a definite pattern of ups and downs. When there were problems, they were BAD. But, when it was good, it was exciting, fun and seemed to be “just what I needed”. It ended when it was brought to my attention that he was dangerous, to me and to my son. It took me a year to get out safely. There was another year of torment from him until finally he gave up and in the 20 years since, he has disappeared off the face of the earth, as far as I am concerned.
That’s why when I had another encounter with someone who I now identify as a Narcissist, I recognized it. Unfortunately, it is not someone I can get away from, at least not right now. He knows that I understand who he really is. He attacked me (in his favorite way, by texting) for a few years, until finally; I will have nothing to do with him. Because I won’t respond, has no use for me, and is now attacking the rest of his family. So, I still have to deal with his abuse, but it’s moved on from me to his own family members now.
Even though he is absolutely horrible to his family, he still turns on the charm, and tries to be the person they want him to be when he needs something. If you say no, then look out! You will be destroyed! After years of this, his family is finally seeing that and they don’t help him financially anymore, but all of this continues because they still keep trying to help him. They don’t recognize that they need to cut him off from all “narcissistic supply” and don’t respond to his bad behavior. I hear comments like, “I know there is a good kid in there” and “He just needs therapy” and “I am afraid he will do something to hurt himself”. That is frustrating to me, but it is evidently not my business. The complicating factor is there is a young child involved, and he is the only reason I care at all.
I don’t know how long I will have to endure this, but I imagine just until the child is of age, and can’t be used to control us.
What I wish would happen is that his family would sit down with him, talk to him about what they won’t accept from him anymore, tell him what help they are willing to give if he will agree to it, and then be done with him. They block his texts and emails, (his favorite modes of attack) and only accept phone calls where it has to do with the child. They are afraid we won’t see the child, but I don’t think that is the case, he still wants us to watch the child when he needs us to. I understand the fear, but I think it is really wrong for him to use the child to control us, and we are letting it happen.
Anyway, I see no end for at least 8 more years.