Losing Ourselves in the Narcissist

I believe the key to our recovery is to find ourselves again. When coming out of a relationship with a Narcissist, the fundamental crux of our problem is that we have lost ourselves in the Narcissist. Trust me, the Narcissist counted on this.

By causing you to doubt and question yourself, the Narcissist ensures you remain dependent on him and lose any sense of identity you once had. The key to getting better is to see the Narcissist for who he is, accept it and find yourself again.

Narcissists lead us to believe we have something we actually do not have, and we hold on to it. We think we have a relationship with an amazing person, when in reality we are living with an illusion that our relationship is special. The acting talent these personalities possess is astounding. They are brilliant con-artists and we must accept that the wonderful person we fell in love with NEVER existed. He hid behind a mask of smoke and mirrors in order to obtain control of us and manipulate us to meet his never-ending child-like needs.

Once we learn to see the Narcissist for the person he really is, we are finally able to free ourselves. We realize we do not need this person in our lives to feel whole and complete. We were whole and complete before this person entered our lives and we will be whole and complete once we end our relationship with this person. It is the Narcissist who is preventing us from being truly happy. It is so important you understand this.

NOTHING stands between you and your true self,but the Narcissist in your life!

The next step is to find yourself again! Just like the Narcissist disconnected from himself as a child, he has now caused us to disconnect from ourselves. Only by being honest with ourselves about the reality of our situation can this happen.

Step 5 - Wake Up - is dedicated to finding ourselves again.

We tap into the power of our mind to awaken our spirit and find ourselves again.

Whatever arises, we must not judge. We must not avoid. We must use everything that happens to us as a means for waking up. We must reverse our habitual pattern of trying to avoid pain by allowing ourselves to feel the moment and understand what it is we are meant to learn from it. We must stop looking for alternatives and cheat ourselves of the present moment.

Unlike the Narcissist, engaging the ego is an OPTION for us. We must remember to let go of our ego and discipline ourselves not to escape reality. Instead, we must practice acceptance. The ego always feels threatened and always lives in a state of fear and want. Once you understand this, you must step out of it so you can:

Get Real, Wake Up and Heal!

Face your fear. Surrender your ego! When we do not run, we discover our innermost essence. Whatever arises, we do not judge. Give up the idea that pain can be avoided and have the courage to relax with the reality of your situation.

Do not avoid your personal experience thinking there is something better out there. We must totally commit to our reality. Only then do we experience the world fully. We must stop thinking we can just run away. Only when we don’t hold back and prepare to escape, do we experience life and truly find ourselves. Commit to staying in the moment. Things become very clear when there is nowhere to escape.

We should not be afraid to feel. We should not be ashamed of the love and grief it invokes in us. I would rather feel pain and know I’m alive than feel nothing. We must take it all in. Let the pain of the world touch your heart and turn it into compassion for yourself.

It is a process. Learning not to run away or lie to ourselves about our reality takes time. Running away is so deep-seated in us. We are conditioned so that the minute things get tough or we even think things are going to get tough, we run. The trick is to avoid running and commit to the moment….to stay there and deal with it. Instead of manipulating the situation or lying to ourselves, we allow ourselves to be with it and understand what we are meant to learn from it. It starts by learning to love ourselves unconditionally.

To accept uncertainty and stay with it is the path to true awakening. Sticking with uncertainty and learning not to panic or run is the path to spirituality. Accepting that we cannot control everything and everyone around us is to let go of our ego. Being pre-occupied with our self-image, what others think of our success and failure is like being deaf and blind. We lose sight of what is important and that is our relationship with ourselves.

Embrace the moment and be open to what you are supposed to learn from it. Wake up and allow yourself to experience pain. It is a fundamental part of life. We think by protecting ourselves from suffering we are being kind to ourselves. This could not be further from the truth. In fact, by doing this we are only becoming more fearful. This alienates us and hardens us. We disconnect from ourselves without even realizing it. If we shield ourselves from discomfort, we will suffer.

We must lighten up, relax and go easy on ourselves. Many of us find it easy to have compassion for others, but have very little for ourselves. It never occurs to us to feel it for ourselves. Living life with an unconditional love for ourselves changes everything. We get rid of the “should haves” and the “could haves” and gradually discover ourselves by being honest and staying in the moment. Without any agenda except for being real, we begin to find ourselves again. We assume responsibility for being here in this messy world and realize how precious life is.

I am often asked when the grieving ends. Everyone is different. You can’t put a time frame on the healing process. What I do know is that the longer you avoid your pain, the longer it takes to recover. We must confront our pain and process it in order to heal and move on. Writing about it helps, expressing ourselves helps, meditating helps. All of these things help, but it is up to you to put these things in motion for yourself. No one else can do it for you and until you do, you will remain stuck. You will not thrive. It is your choice.

By learning from the moments in life, we become more compassionate and can aspire to live in the now. We can relax and open our heart and mind to what is right in front of us in the moment. We see, feel and experience everything more vividly. This is living. Now is the time to experience enlightenment. Not some time in the future. Keep in mind, how we relate to the now creates the future.

“Nothing we can do can change the past, but everything we do changes the future.” ~ Ashleigh Brilliant

When we find ourselves in a mess, we don’t have to feel guilty about it and angry. Instead, we should reflect on the fact that how we RESPOND to the situation determines whatever happens next for us. We can become depressed and cynical or we can look at it as an opportunity to make ourselves strong. It is all a choice. Being brave enough to be fully alive and awake every moment of life, including the dark times, is to truly experience life to its fullest. What seems undesirable in life should not put us to sleep or deaden us. Instead, it should wake us up and remind us of the things we should appreciate.

When we don’t close off and let our hearts break, we not only find ourselves, but we discover our kinship with all beings. This is why our on-line forum is so powerful. Connecting with others on a level no one else can is validating. Together, we help each other face the truth. Although, it may be extremely painful, it is absolutely essential in order to heal. To me, this is the essence of waking up. Bodhicitta is a Buddhist term for a noble or awakened heart and describes this process beautifully.

Together we help each other face the truth and by doing so, we are finally able to find ourselves again. This is the key to our recovery and our Path Forward.

May 22 - 9PM
Narcphobia's picture

I love this post Lisa

May 24 - 8AM (Reply to #7)
Lisa E. Scott
Lisa E. Scott's picture

Thank you, Narcphobia!

May 24 - 2PM (Reply to #8)
Narcphobia's picture

Thank you Lisa!

May 25 - 8PM (Reply to #9)
Lisa E. Scott
Lisa E. Scott's picture

Great quote, Narcphobia!

Oct 7 - 7PM
greengirl91's picture

"I would rather feel pain and

"I would rather feel pain and know I’m alive than feel nothing." This is so, so true, Lisa. Thank you. I am still afraid of totally finding what is whithin myself, being kind to myself, IS new to me. Loving myself uncconditionally, is alien language to me. I still don`t realise what it means to totally give up the need to control, the "specialness", the ego. That is exactly what ex N did, he built a wall, to keep him from feeling pain..but this way, he doesn`t have access to real happiness either. I don`t know if I always been like this, but I believe in a way I did..always on the run, caring too much about appearances, numbers, conditional..that`s what society, family thaught me. Somehow now all reverts around money, consumerism, material things. Do we really need all of this to be whole, complete?.. What do we do when we lose those material things, when we lose our golden jobs, or our loved ones go away in another country let`s say. Who defines us then? Who are we then, without the other`s mirror and perception. Are we suppose to crawl down a hole and die, if they leave us? Or are we supposse to learn and discover ourselfs first, have an identity, and then maybe, find unconditional love.. Long journey. I don`t want to turn into a Narcisist, to run from my feelings all my life, in an attempt to rescue myself, from my past. I want to be beautiful, present, free and not have my self esteem attached to material things, jobs, people. I want to be whole within, but the question remains, how?.. Well, I guess once I reach that point, I`ll know the answer.
Apr 10 - 9AM
divorcedpauline's picture


That's what I am after reading this. I have read good descriptions of narcissists before, but I have never read anything that so perfectly captures the pain and ambivalence of wresting oneself from the narcissist's elusive grasp...and how difficult it is to shift one's energy from focussing on the narcissist to focussing one oneself. You are 100% correct -- recovery is a discipline. Thanks for this eloquent reminder.
May 4 - 9AM (Reply to #4)
berseba's picture

hello , I am new to the blog but old to the pain

So right , the minute i found out who he was , i lost myself. that was 5 months ago 28 years together, including our dating. i am 46 so is he. When i found out obaout the cheating , lies and his current affair of over a year with his x best friend's wife and someone who i helped and prayed for while her mother was dying of cancer and both of them stab me in the back and in the front and every where else. A year ago he got a 10 thousand dollar loan from the bank and his job and put her and her kids in a beauty of an apartment , she is 10 years younger. the whole town knew but everyone said i was too nice to be told the truth!!!!!!!! Finally God sent an angel with the truth , i confronted him with it , and he said yes and left for her apartment that is all.i ran home got my kids 14 and 20 and left for my mother's house. the ow is now driving my car, they are living in my home with my things and the whole town is in complete shock like me and my kids .........oh and let me add , i am a psychologist and i saw strange patterns but loved him too much to see everything else and he lied extremely well and had plenty of help from others. i am now on the other side of the desk and beg for your help, support and understanding. thank you
Apr 3 - 7PM
goin beyond
goin beyond's picture

Good Advice

This was so helpful. My experience was such a shock for me. Prince Charming played the part well. Then as soon as we were married His other side surfaced. While this was happening I had no information on Narc traits and was confused and unable to discern what was going on. I thought it was only transitional issues and testing boundaries..but he started displaying very tyrannical, dictatorial attitudes. Using emotional and verbal abuse. Accusing, projecting. It was so wierd. Avoiding eye contact and also had some stuttering and OCD ticks and traits...everything had to be perfect. Seemed to be void of experiencing real joy...but at times seemed to be content or happy. That was when he was feeling proud about something. I think it is mostly pride, greed, sadistic desire for control...I t hink they may think we should sacrifice our very soul to them. they certainly try to rob of personal identity. Reminds me of Hitler. I've never seen anything like it...I didn't see it full blown till after we married. But he often would get quiet and I would ask if anything wrong, he looked unhappy, He would kind of smile it off. I know now he was just always miserable inside at something I don't know what. But moving on means first I had to understand what I went through this site has really helped me see the real problem so now I can understand and move on.
Mar 28 - 9AM
Swan's picture

I think I should put this on

I think I should put this on my bathroom mirror. Thanks for the food for thought.
Mar 28 - 9AM (Reply to #1)
Lisa E. Scott
Lisa E. Scott's picture


:) Glad it's helpful. It's time to focus on yourself for a change! :)