You must still go no-contact when a you’ve been through a narcissist discard.
Let’s get very real. A relationship with a narcissist does not end until you decide it’s over.
Focus on those words for a moment. There’s some power in them.
We usually hear experts talk about going no-contact when the relationship is still ongoing. We read resources about moving on after being discarded.
Yes, survivors in current narcissistic abuse relationships must get the information and support they need to go no-contact. Yes, survivors who are no longer in those relationships must get the information and support they need to move on.
Survivors who are no longer in the relationships can include both people who left on their own and people who went through a narcissist discard.
[Read “What a Narcissist Does at the End of a Relationship“]
It took me a long time to realize this, but a narcissist discard and going no-contact are not independent of one another.
Why is that?
The Power in No-Contact
When we typically think of the term “no-contact,” we think of a situation in which there is already ongoing contact between the narcissistic partner and the survivor.
However, I would expand the definition to include situations in which the potential for contact to occur between the narcissistic partner and the survivor. This includes a narcissist discard.
It doesn’t matter if the narcissist discarded you five minutes ago or five years ago. It doesn’t matter if it was this morning or last night. It doesn’t matter if it was a week ago, a month ago, or a year ago. In the research I conducted for my book, Why Can’t I Just Leave, one survey respondent described how his ex-partner persisted in contacting him even though the relationship had ended thirty years before.
When you are discarded by a narcissist, you must still go no-contact because narcissists never shut the door on anyone with whom they have ever been in a relationship.
On the one hand, there seems to be a looming threat behind that idea. It suggests that narcissists are like Arnold Schwarzenegger in one of his most famous film roles. As Kyle Reese says to Sarah Connor in the 1984 film named after the role, “That Terminator is out there. It can’t be bargained with. It can’t be reasoned with. It doesn’t feel pity, or remorse, or fear. And it absolutely will not stop, ever, until you are dead.”
Yet, narcissists are not machines. They are not superhuman and they are not superior in psychological or emotional strength to you or anyone else.
Let’s look at the other side of this equation again: a relationship with a narcissist does not end until you decide it’s over.
[Read “Why it’s Hard to Break Up with a Narcissist: They Never Let You Go“]
Focus on those words for a moment because there’s some power in them.
You decide. You have control.
The narcissist in your life is a slave to the narcissistic abuse cycle, however, you can escape because your thoughts and emotions were manipulated in order to imprison you there.
You Are Where You Are
Whether you’re still in the relationship or you’ve been through a narcissist discard, the fact that you haven’t yet been able to decide that it’s over, take the steps to free yourself for good, and make it stick may cause you to feel ashamed.
Yet there is nothing shameful about being unable to keep that decision intact.
You are where you are because the narcissist wanted you in that spot. You’ll have to fight your way out one incremental step at a time until you finally break through to the other side.
There is no timetable for it— there is only your personal timeline.
Preparing extensively for the physical act of leaving is absolutely necessary. Survivors must, of course, make plans for how and when they will leave, where they will go, how they will support themselves, and they must ensure their safety.
[Read “The 5 Stages of No Contact with a Narcissist“]
However, a plan for leaving without psychological preparation is insufficient. Survivors should develop an awareness of the manufactured emotional states and mindset implanted by the narcissist and understand how to counter them.
All Survivors Must Go No-Contact
Survivors leaving their narcissistic partners and survivors who were discarded often both love and idealize their narcissistic partners, feel as if their love was not returned, and are confused about their narcissistic partner’s actions.
Survivors who have endured a discard will need to treat the discard as an extended silent treatment and come to terms with it in a similar way that survivors who go no-contact with a current narcissistic partner.
They will need to reframe the lack of closure they received from the narcissist the same way as someone who is currently interacting with their narcissistic partner.
They will need to manage their emotional response to the narcissist in much the same way.
Most importantly, survivors who have been discarded will need to do everything in their power to ensure that the narcissist cannot contact them.
They must go no-contact.
Narcissists do not like to lose control.
All survivors must go no-contact and take their own power back.
Thank you for reading! If you liked this article, you might like my book, which was drawn from surveys with over 600 survivors and includes my personal story with narcissistic abuse. The first chapter is free and includes the pathological love relationship checklist. Go here to read: Why Can’t I Just Leave free preview.
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