Finding Life in the Shadow of a Narcissist

By Dr. Perry, PhD

“Happiness must be grown in one’s own garden.” ~Mary Engelbreit

Life is complicated. One day we open our eyes and find ourselves in a life that we have no idea how we entered into willingly. We have painted ourselves into the proverbial corner with no window or door for escape. This is how many people describe feeling when they come to realize that their life partner is a narcissist. Perhaps you have a family and co-own assets with a narcissist and like many, feel you cannot leave or are not ready to leave your narcissistic partner. Life is never as simple as walking out a door and finding a new life waiting. I propose that whatever present situation you are in, you can regain your power and learn to enjoy and live your present life. Don’t give up and think this is all life has to offer.

Here are 5 things to remember.

1. Manage the narcissist
Learn to manage the narcissist in your life by gray rocking (To see my post, “How to Gray Rock a Narcissist” Click here) them and cutting the narcissistic supply. Find someone that specializes in narcissists that can help you learn the necessary tools.

2. Nurture yourself
BE SELFISH. It is time that you focus on your own life. If you have been in a long term relationship with a narcissist, you have probably forgotten about your own dreams and plans.

3. Be aware of assets and debts
Make sure you are aware of all family assets and debts. If you have assets together in California, all property is subject to community property upon divorce or death. This means you own half of all assets as well as debts. One spouse can never give away or sell any community property without the other spouse signing off on the transaction. Consult with an attorney in your area to learn your rights.

4. Never sign anything without proper counsel
Never sign anything that your narcissist is pressuring you to sign without consulting with a licensed attorney. You must remember the golden rule. The narcissist only cares about himself and will not be thinking about what is in your best interest.

5. Seek individual therapy in your area
Therapy will help you remember who you are. After years of narcissistic abuse you are likely to feel lost, defeated and confused. It is important that you get your bearings and start empowering yourself.

You need to remember that you are stronger than the narcissist in your life. Initially, the reason he or she chose you to feed on is because of your strength. You need to take your inner strength and energy and start feeding yourself.

If you found this post to be helpful or insightful please remember to like, comment and share!

Dr. Perry
“We specialize in a solution focused approach to psychotherapy, specifically treating depression, anxiety, relationship issues and narcissistic abuse.”
Verified by Psychology Today
Office in Sherman Oaks, CA
(818) 208-1920


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27 responses to Finding Life in the Shadow of a Narcissist

  1. Another well timed, and well stated post. It’s almost as if you’re standing beside me as I take the steps to become me, again. Thank you for your insight and reminder to feed myself. After feeding a narcissist all these years, I’m practically starving.

    Liked by 4 people

  2. This Mamma says:

    I cannot believe how accurate a description you give of my narcissistic husband in these posts. And of my responses. I entered into our relationship eagerly and blindly, and only now, as I’m going through a painful divorce process (which is even more hard because nothing can be negotiated with the narcissist), do I look back and think “how did I ever end up with him? Why didn’t I see”. Thank you for your help. I can’t envisage what it will look like when I’ll be able to find me again, but I hope it’s soon.

    Liked by 3 people

  3. Brilliant post. As always, your advice is invaluable. I find the concept of Narcissism both fascinating yet disturbing. I am also currently working on a post about Narcissism but from a more personal angle. Great post😄

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I grew up with a parent that was a narcissist and still is he still finds ways to abuse me even though I’m 100 miles away I’m In counseling and trying to work through it all but I don’t know if I’ll ever be over it

    Liked by 1 person

  5. rkjoshi1984 says:

    Excellent!! I would say that your blogs are no less than a therapy. Please keep sharing your thoughts..As famously said in India that reading a good write-up is like interacting with an intellectual himself. I have always found your posts like an inspirational conversation. God Bless You.

    Liked by 3 people

  6. Eve says:

    Excellent advice, as always! While reading this, I can envision following through while being mindful to remember important details. A person in a relationship with a narcissist already has a lot to handle. Your article is practical and supportive.

    Liked by 2 people

  7. Lisa Rene Delgado says:

    Thank you Dr.Perry for coming along side me, via internet, I needed this to keep pressing out of my beautiful prison.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Such a great post. In my personal experience, therapy really helps as a filter. After a while you lose yourself and a good therapist can help you decide if what they are saying/doing is healthy or questionable. I feel like you lose your compass and they help you get direction but eventually they also help you find your own again.

    Liked by 3 people

  9. I have had my own share dealing with narcs. Didn’t know what a narc was until I ended a relationship with one. Yet, was reared by one. They are the most manipulative people.

    Liked by 3 people

  10. Been there done that! This person is out of my personal life, but I still have to have regular contact for other reasons.
    I do not want to see it so much as being selfish, but putting myself first! I deserve it!

    Liked by 2 people

  11. Thank you for understanding that it is not always possible to leave immediately. There are strategies to help in dealing with these people. I actually had managed to keep reasonably firm boundaries in place, once I had understood at least to some extent what I was dealing with. It is very hard work and not something I would recommend but it can help get you through in the short term. I had underestimated the effects of the gaslighting, even though I did my best to keep ahead of it.The number one priority is to stay as safe as possible, whilst you put long term plans into operation. I was quite up front about this but of course they believe they will always get their way.

    Liked by 1 person

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