3 Best-Kept Narcissistic Secrets that Will Make Everything Clear

You realize you’re in a war, right?

Ok, so maybe no actual firearms or tanks are involved, but you are definitely in a bloody battle for your sanity.

I hate to dredge up the painful reality of it all, but your toxic, self-absorbed partner is using the three best-kept secrets used by narcissists world-wide – against you!  Secrets that, when used proficiently, can bring other human beings to their knees – regardless of status, intellect, education, or material wealth.

…dirty secrets that can (and often do) result in their unsuspecting partners becoming so broken and dysfunctional that they lose everything – careers, children, homes, licenses (such as those required to perform as doctors, attorneys, and therapists), bank accounts, and worst of all, their sense of self.

Below, I offer an insider exposé that will have you screaming, “Victory!!”  – or at the very least, make everything clear so that you’ll feel empowered to detach from the madness, reclaim your good judgement and reason, and move towards your new life.

  1. Narcissists will not appreciate anything you do to accommodate and placate them.

I know you work hard to please your partner.  I sure did, back in the day when I was “green” narcissistic supply.   I could go into the hellish details of all I did for him and his family, but I’ll spare you.

Narcissists want you to believe that even your best efforts are not good enough.  The reason they do this is so they can keep you scurrying about for their approval, but never quite receiving it.  Before long, you’re doing the work of three people, yet not being acknowledged for it.

Maybe they really liked the chocolate cake you made them last year for their birthday, but after that, each time you made it for them, there was something wrong with it.

Or perhaps, once upon a time, they said you looked pretty when they picked you up for a date, but ever since then you can’t seem to dress right, the colors you wear are all wrong, you’ve gained weight, etc.  Why can’t you just dress like the new secretary at their job or the new CEO who always looks so sharp? 

Do you work two jobs, keep the house clean, pay most or all of all the bills, take care of their errands, and/or cook dinner most nights, but never receive even a simple nod of approval?

This cruel tactic works in two ways – 1) it ensures you will be willing to do whatever they ask at a moment’s notice (hoping they’ll show some sign of appreciation), and 2) destroy your confidence and self-esteem as you develop the belief that nothing you do is ever good enough.

Even if you are highly successful in your professional life and have friends and family who’ve always appreciated what you’ve done for them, the narcissist doesn’t want you to feel any pride or sense of accomplishment – because if you did, you might realize they are using you and consequently decide to do something about it.

“Blow, blow, thou winter wind Thou art not so unkind, as man’s ingratitude.” ~ William Shakespeare

Want to know if your partner’s a narcissist?  Stop catering to their excessive demands and see how they react.

  1. Narcissists DO know exactly how to reel you in

Narcissists truly do have a sixth sense when it comes to snagging people into relationships with them, and it doesn’t have anything to do with their target’s status, wealth, or intelligence.  These toxic individuals are able to detect vulnerability and loneliness in others.  Generally, these states of being originated in childhood and/or early adulthood and were intensified through unsuccessful relationships and life events.

Narcissists and other predatory types can detect vulnerability in people through visual and auditory cues such as facial expressions, body language, and tone of voice.  People who feel vulnerable often avoid direct eye contact with others, tend to look downward a lot, speak in softer voices, and/or are overly nice and accommodating upon first meeting them.

Even if a potential target doesn’t display the above behaviors, narcissists can alternately determine if a person is a good target through other behaviors and traits such as:  high levels of trust, compassion, cooperativeness, and tolerance (traits which they gleefully concede they can take advantage of).

They then use their target’s vulnerability to reel them in, and also to keep them enmeshed in a toxic relationship through psychological manipulation which targets their victim’s emotional wounds and destroys his or her self-esteem.

“What we don’t resolve, we often repeat” ~ Sigmund Freud

If you’ve been hurt in the past and/or have a history of choosing partners who end up being detrimental to your well-being, know that this cycle can be broken through committing to yourself and your recovery.

  1. Silent treatments work best after you’ve isolated yourself from your friends and family

Once the honeymoon/love-bombing phase begins its dismal decline, the narcissist then starts blaming your relationship problems on your outside influences, which may include:  parents, grandparents, siblings, other extended family, exes, best friends, and even children.

After the isolation stage has been successfully implemented, silent treatments can be employed with maximum benefit to the narcissist.  After ensuring you have no emotional support, the narcissist can then criticize you without bias.

This is the same technique that was used in North Korean POW camps[1].  It was not uncommon for a soldier to wander into his hut, go in a corner, sit down, pull a blanket over his head, and die within two days.

Despite minimal physical torture, the death rate in the North Korean POW camp rose 38%, with half of the soldiers dying simply because they had given up.

How did this happen?  The “ultimate weapon of war”.  One that your Narcissist uses against you quite regularly.

The North Koreans’ objective was to “deny men the emotional support that comes from interpersonal relationships.”  To do this, the captors used these primary tactics:

  • Withholding all positive emotional support
  • Criticism

They used negativity in its purest and most malicious form.  The soldiers had nothing to live for and lost basic belief in themselves and their loved ones, not to mention God and country.  The North Koreans had put the American soldiers into a kind of emotional and psychological isolation, the likes of which had never been seen.

Aside from the silent treatment, does the simple act of walking through your house to go to work seem to induce a psychotic rage in your partner?  They want you to feel sorry for being alive.  To be so overly anxious that you feel you’re always one minute away from tragedy.

“The sadistic narcissist perceives himself as Godlike, ruthless and devoid of scruples, capricious and unfathomable, emotion-less and non-sexual, omniscient, omnipotent and omni-present, a plague, a devastation, an inescapable verdict.” ~ Sam Vaknin

If your partner punishes you by regularly utilizing the silent treatment while being overly critical on the days they are in your company, you can be certain he or she is a sadistic, malicious narc-type who doesn’t deserve your devotion, empathy, or compassion.

How to turn it all around

While there’s no way to turn it around with your narcissistic partner, there is good news…though it will require making some hard choices.

Perhaps, as a result of this part of your life, you will completely turn your life around for the better.

Maybe you will become more successful and find the perfect, non-disordered partner for you.

Perhaps this experience will allow you to tap into other areas of your life – allowing you to become more creative and fulfilled.

Maybe this happened so you could free yourself from your past and your wounds, and vow to never let another person to mistreat you…

But, it all requires detaching from the narcissist in your life.  Once you’ve done that and created some distance from the relationship, you can move forward towards healing and see that black clouds often do have silver linings.

Copyright 2016.  Kim Saeed and Let Me Reach

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Rath, T., & Clifton, D. (2004). How full is your bucket?: Positive strategies for work and life. New York: Gallup Press.


  1. Pingback: How the Narcissist Hurts You Using Cognitive Empathy - Let Me Reach with Kim Saeed

  2. Anonymous

    I am leaving my narc husband of 25 years this week and divorce is final in 2 weeks! Last year I saw a therapist who deals with women in narcissistic relatioships. I knew something was wrong but couldn’t quite put my finger on it. I learned that my husband is a high functioning narc. He fools a lot of people. He’s very charming (esp. with the ladies), funny, and social. Everybody likes him. But at home it was a different story. He was so critical of everything I did (and I did everything) and never appreciative. Nothing was ever good enough. He loved to make me the butt of jokes when we were among friends and family. When I would tell him how he hurt me, he never apologized but told me I needed a sense of humor. His whole family is like that. He blamed me for his alcoholism, his constant need for attention from women, and even his erectile dysfunction. Yes, I caused his ED! We have two children that he is emotionally disconnected from. Our daughter moved to another state last year and my son and I have visited twice but he has made no attempt to see her, always making up an excuse. But when you see him talk to an aquaintance you would think he was father of the year! I have read two books on narcs and was amazed that every page I turned, I said to myself, “this is my life”. I felt like a prisoner for so long, no more! I’m finally free!

  3. Cel

    Great article and one I could relate to on many levels. Just a small piece of advice if you republish elsewhere in future.. perhaps we can move away from the gendered stereotypes of female secretaries and male CEOs. 🙂
    Perhaps you could write: Why can’t you just dress like the new Project Manager at their job or the new Sales Rep who always looks so sharp?

    1. Kim Saeed

      Well, Cel, narcissists aren’t concerned with being politically correct. These responses are what we can expect to hear from them, faux pas and all…

  4. Anonymous

    thank u kindly for yr wise words of information sharing your personal journey and support for my current situation continue to detach alrite carrying on ?. p.s. blimey i am working to become a therapist darn not the first time ive read that.?

  5. Debbie Rabin

    Thank you Kim. The community you have brought together and your wisdom has helped me land on solid ground. Thank you x 1000000+
    I am sorry you went through such harsh times. You have turned your experience, your mind and heart around and continue to teach those of us who so need help. I honor you for sharing your understanding and helping so many women and men through difficult times.
    $ is short since the divorce but once things turn around I will and look forward to sending you $ support so you can carry on your important support of us. Thank you so much Kim!

    1. Kim Saeed


      Thank you very much for your kind praise. Your comment has absolutely made my day…my week, in fact 🙂 I am glad to know that my work has helped you in some way. I wish you all the best in your divorce proceedings. I know it’s difficult now, but rest assured that happiness is no longer an elusive concept!



      1. Anne

        I’m struggling right now with all this, I don’t know any different, together from 14 now 31 with 4 children, we had everything, now I have no money no home and in a refuge, coz I began to realise what he was doing to me, it’s hard not to go back but I’m trying for me and my children

  6. Katherine Olsen

    Very good article. Spot on. I finally divorced my Narc husband after 12 years of marriage/hell. I almost left him three times before that, but he kept reeling me back in with his sad sob stories and begging for me not to leave him, making false promises, etc. Two kids in our marriage made it even harder to leave; trying to do what was best for them, unsure of what to do. He totally tried to isolate me from the emotional support of my parents, and blamed them for a lot of our problems, just like you talk about. He did use the silent treatment, and I did feel like I was walking on egg shells around him, like a ticking time bomb, and I was trying so desperately to get his approval and figure out what to do to bring happiness back into our marriage, to no avail. It wasn’t until I left that I realized how messed up my head was, and just how much he held over me. I finally know what real happiness and freedom is, on my own. I was in such a miserable depressed state before. I will never let that happen again. I also won full custody of my two kids, and they are all that matter. I am aware of what he might try with them, and I will be watching and waiting to help them. No one deserves the cruel mental abuse of a narcissist!

    1. E

      How did you get full custody? I am in the same boat except he has a tramatic brain injury 2 yrs ago and can not take care of his self but he is still harassing me via his mother that is also a narcissist. NONE stop harassment for 2yrs with false criminal charges and 3 days in jail, suing for custody every chance they get, cps, shutting off utilites that were still under his name, closing joint account without me, lost 2 jobs 1 for the false charges and the other from stress and anxiety over another custody case beacuse I cant afford an attorney. They interrogate my kids for information on my personal life. He says he’s gonna commit suicide in front of them and he has supervised visitation court appointed his mom she is never there. He stays in his room and plays video games the whole time. They are suing me for custody, claiming me my boyfriend do drugs boys are scared of him, he cant get in touch with me or the boys when he takes there phone before returning them after visitation wont return it sometimes. They are made to do house work while im out, they are unsupervised 14 yrs and 10 yrs legal at 10 yrs old in louisiana and its while im at work.. what do I do?? I have wrecked my car lost my job and have to move 45mins away were there is a job for me and in with my boyfriend.

  7. Cheryl

    Hi Kim,

    Had no idea I was married to a Narc. I. 3 year marriage and I told him I’M DONE! GET OUT!
    He finally did leave after begging me to stay in the marriage, promise counseling, promise to get men friends, promise to stop smoking pot, ect.
    I saw him in court yesterday (we are still married working towards getting divorce) and after court went to his home to get some furniture cause he is moving and his girlfriend before marrying me called his iPhone, her picture came up and it said, “Jesus Angel” — I was shocked. I had no idea. Found out he contacted her when I was getting stronger and not giving him his supply. He’s actual driven down south (6 hours away) to see her while we are married.
    I’m so glad this happened and God allowed me to see it. I got into his email and the other women has been sending him devotionals while we were married but separated. He’s hooking her like he hooked me. God is good.
    This led me to look further in him being a NARC and is he ever one. He wanted to believe that when I came over to get furniture I was coming over to say sorry and I want him back even though he is already seeing his old girlfriend who is clueless about who he really is.
    I stood up to him and said there’s no way I’m here to get back with you. You haven’t changed your still love avoident, love dependent, needy, in fear, boundary breaker, and depressed — (counselors diagnosis of him) actually he’s a Narc and counselor was manipulated and didn’t see full picture — I do.
    Reading your articles is so validating. My Narc husband was sexually abused by a teacher at age 10 and had abusive dad and NARC mom.
    I have compassion for broken people but most importantly I’m out, he has a new victim, and I see all his wicked emotional manipulation and have no desire to go back and be abused waiting for a crumb of love to come my way. I saw him in a new light yesterday — Narc! The way he treated me yesterday and throughout our marriage after the “honeymoon” was over is exactly what you describing in your articles.
    I thank God every morning He’s gone and that my childhood wounds of abandonment are healing –thats how I got hooked.
    Thank you so much for your site. God Bless you, Kim.

  8. yoyo

    my narci had all the trait’s except the silent treatment . that i dont understand. he is very confrontational. used projection a lot, gas lighting and very good in twisting stories . he used blame, threat. making you feel guilty , hurt, pressure , self pity to the get what he wants.

    1. yoyo, the silent treatment or ghosting starts to occur, if the Narcissist suspects that you are on to them (so to speak). If this is the case, then the narc is aware that they themselves could get dumped or exposed at any minute, so they will ignore you to bring about a desired negative response from you, so that they can then justify in their own twisted mind, reasons for walking away from you, discarding you, or you actually managing to get away from them first.

  9. Donna

    I’m almost a full year NC! I can say that I still have hard days, but life is SO MUCH BETTER. The five years I was with him and the 1 year since have been the hardest of my life, but good things are ahead.

  10. Kathy

    I live in this country for 23 years and I have no friends and family, he kept me away from them for years, my father passed away recently, and I went back to my country for funeral, my mom is alone there, and I have a daughter here at college, and I have a job that I am not sure I can even pay the rent. I should stayed there with my mom but again I came back to this hell, I have to give the money I make to him and do all the house work too. I take some money out from deposit for paying gas and est. he yells that I am taking too much money and he is not working for a year and half (this is a pattern during all these years)
    other description you mentioned 100% matches, he hides everything and if I leave I have nothing. do I go back to my country, at list my mom needs me, or leave and start a minimum living, I had never lived all by myself. making this big decision is hard for me, loosing my job is like loosing ten years of my life, and I have to start all over there.

  11. Becky

    It’s been 5 months since I left my narcissist and I would have NO problem going no contact, but we have a 10 month old son and we must talk to each other. How do I recover when this is going to go on forever? We are still in a vicious custody fight and he’s bleeding be dry financially and emotionally.

  12. One of the strangest things is when my eyes were actually opened, even though I am the victim, this awareness changes everything, and I simply cannot believe how many people sleep around the narcopath, and from every walk of life, including the pastor of the church she attends, as she has placed him in protector role, and being the most respected of her pawns, and receiving advice from him as her most influential adviser, not knowing she is feeding him the advice which he advises her with.
    It is simply awe inspiring to watch outside looking in, even knowing I truly am the victim, I cannot believe how so many (everyone) serves as narcopath supply and are completely oblivious to it, not to mention the frustration that comes from pointing out the most basic obvious contradictions, and what I can only see as preservation of self pride and indulgence those who definitely should be awake by now, rather than accept what they’ve been in her “world”, that being basically fodder, choose to remain a player, as the reality is more than most can comfortably live with.

    I could use any advice or informative instruction, as she will have a bachelor’s in pastoral studies and drug and alcohol counseling before this time next year. I’ve wondered why when a narcopath rarely completes any task, she has been so driven, and now I know.
    Can you imagine the plethora of nefarious deeds and relationships that will come from unfettered access to those who admittedly are in need of support and healing?
    I know now I was merely her test subject, and even if as I sometimes wonder I somehow make it to the survivor of narcopath abuse side, if it’s enough.
    If my demise would somehow open some of the myriad of closed eyes and minds, witnessing the treacherous things she says and does, I think it is worth it.
    Jesus said; Greater love has no man than this, to lay down his life for others.

    I’m specifically looking for anyone who could be of influence in speaking to her school, at least to get a psyche eval in order to continue,because frankly I’m not supposed to be alive right now to write this, as she did everything she was supposed to in order for me to end myself, but if I do, it won’t be today. She didn’t count on the fact that God too has His reasons for allowing her to enter my life, and reader know this, when it comes to confronting evil as evil, I don’t play, and I don’t relent until I believe God decides it’s done. Whether you believe in the existence of God prior to experiencing narc or narcopath abuse, the obvious evil they are makes certain there must be a GOOD in contrast, yes?

    So please any advice or direction would be greatly appreciated, as she must be stopped.

  13. samantha leigh

    Ok everyone….Its been 4 weeks. I am a certified Equine Assisted Psychotherapist and I fell hard for a Narcissist. I met him while dealing with my mother’s last days of her life. He said all the right things…his mother had died as well. It was a one of the lowest times of my life. He moved into my home within months of meeting ( he was helping). I truly was in such deep grief at missing my best friend and biggest fan (mom) that I don’t even remember saying yes to the move…. 3 years later I think I just WOKE up. I allowed him to isolated me from everyone while I hid in grief. I saw him as my soft place. Then the name calling. I never been treated like that in a relationship before and was shock…left him and he did it ALL to get me back. Agree to therapy, accepted the blame, and quit drinking. I was sure it would be different. It ONLY took month to go right back to the behaviors. The food wasn’t right, I flirted with someone, I was 10 minutes late so I was cheating, I was gaining weight. I actually weighed myself and took a picture to show him I had not. It was crazy making!! Last straw was so odd. He got mad at me, Raging, because my grown daughter rescued a puppy with a broken foot. She had it in HER room fostering it till the rescue could do surgery (3 day) . I realized….He is mad at me over a hurt puppy. Something shifted, I was done. Honestly I feel so dumb for falling for something I had training in. BUT can relate to every single thing everyone said about. I too miss him…..He has hoovered like the vacuum he is. I have good days and bad. I have tried to stay busy, reconnect with friends, ect. Reading the above thoughts has made it easier and not so alone. THANK YOU Kim and all the people dealing and healing. Light and love.

    1. Mary

      Samantha, your puppy story…exactly. He would get angry at me for “letting” people in my family think, say and do things…anything that irritated him for any reason. Like I had some sort of power to control others according to HIS wishes. IF I truly knew him, I would at all times foresee what he would need and either cause it to happen or prevent something that might possibly bother or irritate him… Dear God, I could never please him, and I NEVER knew when he was going to be angry or why. I only knew it would all come back on me, without fail. Walking on eggshells. Playing out every possible scenario in my head… “How can I word this, do this, undo this so HE won’t be upset. It didn’t matter. I was always wrong, bad, inconsiderate, foolish; you name it. It would have eventually killed me.

  14. I was with him for 15 miserable years. I attempted suicide twice and then had an accidental overdose where I was actually dead for nearly 45 minutes. I didn’t even understand why I was doing it. but I had two sons with him and wanted to leave with all my heart, but felt i couldnt, somehow when I awoke from that last close call, my inner strength was

    1. undone daisy

      miraculously restored. I left my sons to get away and have not been able to see them yet. ive been gone for 14 months and divorced since last december. I feel terrible that I couldn’t take them with me, but I barely made it out alive. I tried to go see them last week and had to file a police report against him d or making death threats against me, my boys are age 4 and 13. he has turned the older one against me already. but I know that it’s better to be absent than dead.

  15. I would love to never have to speak to my ex-narc ever again. However we have 2 very young children together so this is not an option for me. We were together 10 years and his assault was a slow and effective one. He won many battles but not the war. I am still here. After 18 months apart I am finally able to look myself in the eye in the mirror and not be ashamed. But sometimes, sometimes, I hear the shells falling either over the phone arranging a child drop off or in my mind when something happens to trigger a memory. Those are the tough days. The days when I think maybe he was / is right. Maybe I am the manipulative, selfish, useless one. Maybe…

    1. Kim Saeed

      Carly – I don’t hear the echoes of my Ex’s voice anymore, shouting those horrible accusations at me, but I’m not sure the echoes in themselves ever really go away 100% because I heard similar ones as a child. Most of the triggers I experience go way back before I even met my Ex, though he did have a way of bringing them all into the conscious mind where I could be tortured by them.

      You’re not any of those things. That’s your negative narrative script running. That’s why I love guided meditations…they help re-write them <3

  16. Lori

    Phew! What a spot-on description of my hellish 14 year marriage. Held my breath while reading the part about the POW treatment. I soberly realized I was in a war, a prison withot bars. I took my 3 children+escaped to a shelter. Got sole custody(he wanted his pension+money in exchange). I wanted to protect my children. It has been no contact for 22 years…and exhale. I cherish the small things+love that my children remind me of their grandparents, who helped me raise them. I have also gained wisdom.
    Thank you for this sobering article on what so many lives are still entangled in.

    1. Kim Saeed

      …and thank you for stopping by and sharing your experience, Lori. I am glad you took the leap of faith and got out. I’m glad for you and your children. You are a warrior <3

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  18. peggy tate

    Have read and re-read this post so many times !!! This one in particular gave me the strength to leave. Kim, I thank God everyday for you and your help ! So many thanks to you. You have saved my life !

  19. nevereveragain

    Thank you, Kim. Excellent post that hits the nail on the head for my relationship that I can FINALLY say I am free from. I’ve been no contact since May and have been working on me. “But, it all requires detaching from the narcissist in your life. Once you’ve done that and created some distance from the relationship, you can move forward towards healing and see that black clouds often do have silver linings.”
    Truer words have never been spoken. After several months of no contact, I have realized that silver lining. I met a wonderfully sweet, kind, loving, empathatic, considerate man at my 30th class reunion. We’ve been together 6 weeks and what a dream. I had no idea how wonderful the right relationship could be. I’m beyond blessed and I must say it all started with you and your blog. Your words gave me the strength to finally love myself and believe that I deserved better. One last time as I don’t believe I will be stopping by here that often, but THANK YOU….from the deepest part of my heart. nevereveragainxo

  20. jlewis3047

    I had a ex lover from my past call me the other day and sayed he missed my cooking. A light bulb went on …all this time the Narko was telling me my food was not to his approval. Everytime i put more effort in the meals to fit his standards he made complaints. He rejected my food at every chance. He even chose a cup of noodles over a meal I put a lot of effort in. The mesaage that i didnt get was he has no standards. He just wanted to exercise the act rejecting me.
    My daughter….Godmother and friends rave about how good I cook. The Narko will displace all your talents until you think you have none.

      1. jlewis3047

        Thanks Kim…I now use the Narko as a barometer to measure how well I’m healing. I wonder why we seek validation from them their totally not worthy of given an opinion when their opinion is all about making someone feel bad. Let me tell you even his silent treatment is working for me I use that time to self sooth. Before long they come looking for you if they have no one to project on to. Again I use him for emotional bootcamp.

  21. For me it’s a family member. I have awoken to this reality a while ago. I still don’t always feel like I accept it though, but that doubt is lessening as time goes on.

    I doubt it at times probably because we were close as children and it really is sad. Thing is, she doesn’t tick every box for NPD. But she does tick enough to make it a bad situation.

    Articles like this wake me up even further to see what really went on.

    I saw above in your response to a comment that these kinds of posts don’t bring in the readers like other types of posts do. And that makes me go, “Huh?”

    It’s one of those that either gives you another piece to the cog/dis puzzle or reminds you of it. Thank you.

  22. About the: Silent treatments work best after you’ve isolated yourself from your friends and family. It is really true. I should know, because we have a LAT relation for over 4 years in which he sometimes behaved strangely, but when I left my home town to move to his town, he suddenly started the silent treatment and running out of the house, when he was, what he called, being offended by me. He offended me and when I stood up for myself it was turned around.
    It took me 30 years to figure out, what was happening. Don’t take such a long time as I did.

    1. Anonymous

      I too left after 30 years. I found out about his affair and it was so opposite of the brainwashing I had undergone. …who tells their spouse if I find someone I’ll tell you, “he was a great catch and had so much to bring to the table” wtf. …where was I for so long.
      Everyone else could see this guy was a total jerk, even his/our kids saw it. It was almost as if he never really existed in our relationship, just emotionally unavailable.
      After reading about emotional abuse and the tell tale signs, they were all there. I thought maybe someday he’d realize how I was killing myself to please him. That day would never come….even if I lived to be 100.
      All the best, you will find yourself again and just knowing we don’t have to go through this daily is peace.
      God Bless. Keep praying, God is listening.

  23. Peggy Tate

    finally got the strength……..leaving in 25 days……scary, but well worth it. To all othres : I am 65 and DOING IT ! You can too. Thank you Kim !!! (and Sam Vaknin !)

    1. Kim Saeed

      Woo Hoo! That’s wonderful news, Peggy! You’re a rock star 🙂

      1. peggy tate

        so many thanks!!!!! w/out your input/intelligence I could never have done this ! prayers for courage ??

    2. I am 65 as well and left six months ago. Not a day goes by that I don’t think of him and wish things were different. Every day is a struggle. One step forward and two steps back. Many tears and doubts. Hopefully this will pass in time. My heart is full of pain especially that after many years of marriage I was replaced within a few weeks and his life happily goes on. Unfortunately mine is not. I pray for strength for myself and anyone else in this position.

      1. I must add that 4 months after I wrote that comment my life is finally becoming ‘normal’ whatever that is. I often think about the fact that he never once asked me to stay but gladly helped me move. His new love was there within days. He has ruined me emotionally and financially for the time being but I am sure I will be much better. He has lost everything. His wife, children, grandchildren and friends and now has only the girlfriend. I sure hope she’s worth it!!!!!!!!!!!

  24. Bette

    It saddens me that Sam Vaknin equates [capital “G”] God with adjectives such as “ruthless, capricious, unfathomable, devoid of scruples…” that would be Satan. The omniscient, omnipresent, omnipotent would be God. Let us not fall into the confusion that our loving God is anything but loving. From the believer, the Holy Spirit bears fruit of wisdom, joy, peace, love, self-discipline, humility, strength, power. It is knowing and believing this that enables us to endure and heal; to give us the discernment to see with clarity the Truth and to separate ourselves emotionally and spiritually (and hopefully physically) from such wickedness and sickness that occupies the heart, mind and spirit of the narc. Let us work on ourselves and let God judge and determine their fate.

  25. grateful

    Dear Kim,

    Your website and facebook page have helped me so much these past few months, especially the past few weeks. I don’t have a facebook account but I could read your page because it is public. I also found Detoxify You through your page. If you know them, can you please relay my thanks to them? You all helped me get through some very hard moments. I have been so touched by your generosity of time, spirit, compassion, and understanding. I can’t thank you all enough for all that you have done. You have been like angels to me. I hope to someday be able to help others like you all have. You are so appreciated. I hope that you and they can know that. Thank you for all that you do!

  26. Leslie

    Thank you I needed support today, well every day. Today, was perfect timing. I would like to suggest a movie American Psycho, it helped me get it…….plus Christian Bale (sp?) Hes a hotty. I love the bad good guys. It truly is why a people pleaser such as myself like characters such as the one in American Psycho…..orLast Tango in Paris….Stella……

  27. Anonymous

    Although I am in therapy still for N-abuse, it heartens me t read your posts. Do not ever stop.
    I would love for the 3rd party my N brought into the mix to see these but I guess she will just have to find out for herself.so sad really that this disorder can not be contained. My therapist tells me that N’s never get it, it is always the other person s fault, that is the crazy making part.
    Thank you for getting it!

  28. Cindy

    Going no contact was definitely the right decision but it sure as heck wasn’t the easiest. I thought I was just going to have to cut ties with him, I soon found out differently. He was just the 1st step the other family members slowly but surely showed their true colors. I didn’t ask anyone to pick a side nope I picked who I wanted in my life and lucky for me those people were the same people who were there before I met him..during my relationship with him..and last but not least the ones that were there in the end that were confused about my behavior and that I should be glad he is gone. These people stayed after I replied to them you don’t know the whole story and then they stuck around and listened to me ramble, sat with me and watched tv and checked on me when I would go into seclusion from the world. I know every situation is different so I wanted to make sure I knew any and everything about these evil people…after I found my voice…I let go of all the crap I couldn’t change and learned for real that I could forgive myself of these things…it was a day of my independence. ..I had one last meeting with my ex and at first he was intimidating over the phone (I could tell he was putting on a show for an audience ) so at first I just let him run his mouth until he hit my last nerve and I came back swinging. I told him he was a liar and a hypocrite. Then I said look up narcissistic sociopath he said I don’t know what that is..I chuckled and said then go read the book of Titus. After that I hung up and because I have him blocked we have never spoken since that day on the phone. Our last email communication was about 4 weeks ago and that was in response to something I did but didn’t admit I did to him. I told him he was delusional as usual. What I did was something I wished someone would have done for me so just know I wasn’t trying to be mean or break them up because I want him back it was nothing like that. Under a alia name I sent her the “letter to the new woman” I’m pretty sure everyone has seen or read it and for me it was spot on about my relationship with him. I wasn’t expecting her to believe it anymore than I would have 13 years ago. But it sure would have helped in connecting the dots and trying to keep my own sanity because I was a lost soul and I had no clue what was happening. .I knew there was something I just didn’t know it was as big as it turned out to be. When I Google I certainly wasn’t looking for this and I wouldn’t wish it on anyone because it was awful. ..and sometimes still it feels awful but I can say I’m better than I was yesterday and I’m sure as hell happier than I was 5 weeks ago. My baby steps are my mountains and not everyone gets it and that’s ok..I’m still moving forward with positive attitude and not looking back with regret. God placed me in that path and He brought me through it so that’s where faith comes in.

  29. I was married to what I now know was a narc for 39 years 2 kids, now 41 and 38, is it possible that my children have inherited the narc gene? They tel me I’m selfish as I fell apart when he left, I should have realised he was sick but felt it was all my fault he was doing Internet dating and more, emotional, physical and financial abuse. Why do my kids not see I was unable to see reality?

    1. It doesn’t seem fair does it? Keep praying and never allow yourself to that level your ex is on. One day your kids might get it. Personally I think you should move away from them and live Your LIFE! Your way! Forget them right now they will only hurt you more. They’ll survive without you. Your ex was their role model. Family sometimes needs to be off our ,it’d and to go no contact or minimal contact. Find a support group you like. Good luck,

  30. It’s been years since I’ve detached from the narc, but it was insane how many more were lurking like magnets. Co workers, my ex husbands new wife was a narc which meant co parenting was a blast. Thank god the red flags are usually loud and clear after. The silent treatment as a response to healthy self championing or boundaries is a huge red flag for me and trigger….I totally run from that and love bombing. Thank you for your articles they keep me on my toes.

  31. Narcs! Talk about the mystery of iniquity. Bible has lots to say about these wicked people – their rotten fruit is overwhelming. Sometimes, it’s all i can do to not hate these snakes back.

  32. Gah!! I still read your posts Kim but in truth, there are one or two that I skim by necessity.
    It IS war and I came out with PTSD, among other fun things (heavy irony) there. Even this far along, the Narc has been deceased for over a year now, there are some words that catapult me right back into specific occurrences, such as you’ve mentioned and I find myself angry all over again…
    I’m going to say for the newly aware Targets of a Narc, read and absorb these words – they WILL help you and now I’m going to run away (figuratively speaking) to my flower and happy place posts 🙂
    Hope all is well where you are. K~xx

    1. Kim Saeed

      Hi Karin! So wonderful to see you here. I can relate to the PTSD triggers. I still have them sometimes, but nowhere near the intensity that I used to. It’s really ironic that the posts I write about healing and recovery (including how-to’s and step-by-step guides) hardly garner attention. I love to write about that stuff! Even though they don’t attract many people, I’ll still continue to write them 🙂 Have fun with your fun posts!

      1. What?! I can only guess that sometimes the truth of what we have to do to get away from Narc-holes, is a bit too much for people to grasp. I have you linked all over the place over on my corner and can only hope the message gets through. I have many silent visitors, I’m sure you do too so keep up the posts! I will never stop telling those who ask that your words and concrete advice saved my sanity and likely my life. You are so appreciated by me, my close friends and family. Everyday. <3

      2. judy crosariol

        Please keep writing. I think you just saved my life. Thank you!

      3. Lulu

        I’m here, quietly standing in the corner trying to figure out which way to go; how to escape without losing everything. But, I’m paying attention.

        1. Kim Saeed

          Paying attention is a very good first step, Lulu…

          1. want to get it

            these peeps always sneak up on me at work because it’s like everyone drank the koolaide and expects us all to act like these peeps just need love :O

        2. Pat Kline

          I left quietly. He never saw it coming but did I ever walk on egg shells until that moving company has me packed up and out of his house. Karma will come to him one day and it won’t be good KarmaI have been NC since Nov 26th 2015. They are evil and the devil he never deserved me and everything I did for him….. But I no longer have to deal with any of his bs, good luck to the next one, she’s going to need it. Yes he also put me through a very ugly cruel and vulgar smear campaign on fb but once he goes through the next one and he will his friends will see WHO is the one with the real problem ……… Glad to be free from himb

      4. Kaylene

        Please, please tell me where to find these sites because I’ve been trying to heal for ten long years after an 18 year marriage to a malignant narcissist who divorced me then took our children. My children are grown now and the nightmare has never stopped as I see him now doing to them the same thing he started doing to me when I was in my 20’s. It never ends.

  33. mary

    My ex ticked all the above three boxes, especially the silent treatment one. I’ve gone no contact for 8 weeks now and I’m finding it difficult. But I know that I won’t break it. Some days are harder than others. I know he didn’t deserve me and I know that I didn’t deserve to be treated that way. I’m not nearly ready to meet someone else yet but I pray that in time, God will bless me with someone who is my equal in every way. ..but most especially in an emotional and moral way. To all of you who are going through a difficult time. ….keep busy and remember your self worth.

    1. August

      Mary, I’m almost three weeks of NC w my N and it is so hard at times, then others I feel so much joy and accomplishment at being able to be strong enough to recognize his Hoover attempts and ignore them. But for some reason, when he doesn’t Hoover, I get so sad. It’s crazy the hold they have on us at times. I don’t want that life back, I just want to feel like maybe I did mean something to him (although I know through all my research this is a fantasy and they are incapable of real emotion). I guess it’s BC I’m not disordered like him that I feel this way. I am obviously disordered enough in an empath way BC I did allow the abuse without even realizing it was abuse, but I can feel real emotion and Ns can not. It is so hard for me to wrap my head around the concept of not feeling for anyone. I hate that I miss him at times and I realize what I miss didn’t exist. Even knowing all of that… It is still so hard to not think about him. I know it gets easier and some days it is easy. Today is just not one of those days.
      I don’t have much of a support system so I’ve taken to blogs to post my feelings and it’s helped a ton. Just writing my feelings to someone who genuinely understands is so therapeutic and takes some of the “missing him” away and brings me back down to reality.

    2. FreeSpirit

      If we lived in a just world, these creatures would all be exterminated like the cockroaches they truly are.

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