A narcissist is a master manipulator. This is someone who can turn on the charm in an instant, confusing the life out of you, and even causing you to question your own sanity. Despite that, it’s very easy to fall in love with a narcissist and far harder to know how to leave a narcissist.
Remember that you are in love with an illusion
The rather sad bottom line is that no matter how much you love your partner in this situation, if they’re a true narcissist, you’re in love with an illusion and the relationship has no future. You might think that you know the ‘real’ them, that you can see who they are under the surface, but the narcissism is who they really are. Everything else is a smokescreen to keep you where you are.
In all probability, a narcissist doesn’t even know who they are themselves. They change so much so often, because of their own ever-changing needs and desires that all they know is to be a fake and a malicious liar. When you’re in love with a narcissist, you’re in love with one of their layers – a layer they may keep for a while, or shed, depending on what catches their fancy that year, day, or even, that minute.
The most important thing to point out here? You are not to blame for falling for their act. This is what they do. A narcissist is suffering from Narcissistic Personality Disorder and acting this way is all they know. As a result, trying to change them is as useless as attempting to put a fire out with oil. It just makes things worse.
[Read: How do narcissists control you so subtly? And why you allow them]
How to leave a narcissist and slowly untangle yourself from their web of deceit
If you want to look to a brighter future, at some stage you must learn how to leave a narcissist in a way which separates you from their actions and allows you to be free. It’s hard, I’m not going to lie, but it’s possible. Let’s talk about how.
#1 Acknowledge who your partner really is. You need to know for sure that your partner is narcissistic. Do some research into NPD. By doing this, you will be able to understand that they can’t be changed and can’t be ‘cured’. That will help you to gain the strength to follow with the other steps and learn how to leave a narcissist for good. [Read: How to tell if someone is a narcissist]
#2 Spend some time coming to terms with the situation. After you’ve acknowledged what is going on, come to terms with it in your own mind. Understand that there is no future in this relationship.
Most importantly, don’t blame yourself. Allow yourself to unearth those painful memories you’ve buried away from the past and unpick them, giving yourself further weight to the reason why you need to leave. At the end of the day, the victim of a narcisstic is a victim of emotional abuse. [Read: Why do narcissists ignore texts and do the selfish things they do]
#3 Don’t be tempted to try again. It’s very easy to try and see the good side of someone and be tempted to give it one last try. Don’t! It’s a huge mistake.
They’re not going to change, they are not capable of it. Sure, they might turn the charm on and go back to being the charming person they were when you first met. But as sure as night is night, they will go back to their ways in the end. [Read: Been gaslighted? The signs a narcissist is playing mind games with you]
#4 Don’t let them know what you’re thinking. Don’t tell them that you’re thinking about leaving. One of the biggest guidelines of learning how to leave a narcissist is to make sure that it comes as a total shock to the narcissist. If they have even the slightest inkling that you’re about to leave, they will intercept the situation and manipulate you even more.
#5 Do your preparation. Before you make a move, do some preparation. Make sure that you have all your important documents, e.g. passport, bank cards, any documents that you need and make sure that you don’t leave anything important behind. You should also draw some money out of the bank to keep with you, just in case your partner has access to your bank account. This is particularly important if you have a joint bank account. You’ll need some cash to tide you over once you leave.
#6 Speak to someone you trust. You’re going to need help, you cannot do this alone. In that case, choose someone you trust and feel at ease confiding in. Do your best to be as open and honest about the situation and let them know that you’re learning how to leave a narcissist so you can free yourself. Remember, you’re not to blame for this situation and you shouldn’t feel embarrassed. You’re going to need a support system around you. [Read: How narcissists end a relationship with you when they’re done with you]
#7 Figure out where you’re going to go. Whether or not you live with the narcissist, it’s important to go away for a short while. If you don’t live with them, they’re just going to keep turning up at your door constantly. If you do live with them, make sure you pack your belongings when they’re not home and make a plan for where you’ll go.
It’s best for this to be a place that they wouldn’t think to find you. It might seem drastic but necessary when learning how to leave a narcissist. [Read: Here’s how to leave a toxic relationship for your own future]
#8 Leave when they’re not around. Leave them when they’re at work or away. Make sure you take everything you need. You can’t go back to collect anything because it puts you at risk of being manipulated once more. Once you’ve gone, do not turn around or allow yourself to become sentimental. Remember, this is for your greater good. [Read: The 7 stages you have to constantly face in a narcissistic relationship pattern]
#9 Cut all communication. Once you’ve left, block their number and all their social media accounts. Make sure your accounts are on private settings and do not accept any name that you don’t know. A narcissist who has just been left will either do everything they can to keep contacting their ex, or they will become passive aggressive/verbally abusive. You don’t need any of these situations. When you’re feeling vulnerable, you’re going to be more susceptible to their manipulation.
#10 Spend some time focusing on you. Now you’re away from your partner, you’re going to start thinking over things, wondering if you did the right thing, questioning whether you were imagining it, etc.
It’s best to distract your mind as much as possible from these thoughts. Use this time to focus on yourself. Think about healing, learn something new, spend time doing the things you always loved but didn’t do when you were with your ex. The more you do this, the more confident you’ll feel and the stronger you’ll become. [Read: What is the worst thing you can do to a narcissist to hurt them]
#11 Do not go back to them. There will come a time when you have a moment of wonder. You’ll start to panic that you shouldn’t have left. It’s at this time you need your support network around you. Draw on the strength you’ve been building up.
Understanding how to leave a narcissist hinges on finality. You cannot go back; otherwise your life will be hell from that point onwards. It will be worse than before. Look to the future and focus on the positive. Everything from this point can and will be better.
#12 Reconnect with those around you. One of the biggest manipulation tactics a narcissist uses is to disconnect you from your friends and family and leaving you at their total mercy. Use this time to reconnect with those people and build your relationships back up. It’s very likely that they’ll be over the moon that you’ve left and will want to do all they can to help you get back on your feet. [Read: How to reconnect with old friends and rebuild your lost friendships]
#13 Understand that it will take time. It’s not possible to learn how to leave a narcissist, do it, and feel fine. It will be a difficult and painful phase full of confusions and lingering memories. You’ll find yourself constantly wondering if you did the right thing. You will feel lost for awhile and you will struggle, but that’s fine. It’s all part of the healing process. Understand that this process takes a little time *sometimes, a lot longer because thy’ve hooked you*, but it will lead to somewhere wonderful.
[Read: Are you feeling lost in life? Use these six lessons to help you find your way]
These 13 steps teach you how to leave a narcissist in a way which allows you the best chance of success. Be strong, be positive, and look to those around you for support. It’s hard, but you can do it.
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