The narcissist only returns again and again to ensure that you never move on from the pain he has caused you – and this is the ONLY reason. If you remember nothing else from what I tell you, you must remember that. The sociopath and narcissist will hoover for no other reason than to get another chance to hurt you. This is why it seems that the narcissist returns only to leave again – and this time quicker than the time before. He might even get up and leave after the great make-up sex, saying he’ll be right back or he’ll call you later and – POOF – he’s gone again. Make no mistake…all these “comings and goings” are intended to hurt you. It’s all by grande narcissistic design.
It’s important that we understand that the life of the narcissist’s target is nothing more than a massive playing field upon which the N can hone his evil skills. It’s a stomping ground where he can practice better ways to execute his game and plan for the attack. Knowing this, when we agonize over whether a narcissist will come back or if he will ever return after a silent treatment the answer, obviously, is maybe…but then what? Any time away from the narc is a step in the right direction so are you really ready to go back to square one after coming this far? Think about it.
Narcissists, of course, do not miraculously fix themselves while they’re away although they certainly will try to tell you differently. Returns are usually prompted by the bad behaviors of whomever they left you for (and they did leave you for someone) or the ding of the bell as your name pops back up in the queue or by any one of a myriad of warped narratives dictated by the narcissist’s relationship agenda. And because the narcissist knows you as well as you think you know him, he is confident in the fact that he’s managed down your expectations to the point that you’ll take him back without significant repercussions or consequences. This is a highly dysfunctional dynamic, my friends, and you are settling for crumbs by allowing this behavior.
I receive so many letters from women and men who have succeeded with No Contact to the point that they are actually living life in the manner that they deserve. It makes me want to rejoice, it really does. I know how hard it is to stick to No Contact because I was never very good at it. What happens, though, inevitably, is that somewhere along the line I start receiving the question of whether or not the N will return from those who have been doing well. Why does this happen and why is it so fucking hard to let this bastard (or bitch) go? What is the “hold” and why is it so strong? Is this sudden, out-of-the-blue feeling of slight panic or desperation normal? My answer is yes…yes it is.
When we start wondering if maybe…just maybe…the narcissist (our ex) will come back, hoover, or reappear after a disappearance, or start communicating after a silent treatment, we are falling back into the waiting pattern that kept us hostage for years. Seriously, think about the amount of time that you’ve spent waiting for your narcissist boyfriend or girlfriend or husband or wife over the course of your relationship.
When I look back on my life with the ex, there’s no doubt that we spent more time apart than together and he made sure of that! I talk about this at length in my book When Love Is a Lie. In this book, I tell you in detail what happened to me over thirteen years and how I finally mentally called it off even before we split up for good. I started making small choices that changed the way I behaved in reaction to his narcissistic behaviors and the result was amazing. It’s about changing your perspective and if I did it, you can do it too.
You must understand that none of this nonsense will ever change – ever. Not for you, not for the next person, and not for the ones that come after that. Get the irrational thought that this is even a possibility right out of your head.
The narcissist will continue to hurt you until the end of time because that’s what narcissists do and they enjoy it. Your suffering is actually the narcissist’s reward for a job well done and don’t you forget it. If he couldn’t mess with your head, he literally would have nothing to do. Letting go of the narcissist is about removing yourself from the mental anguish…from the perpetual waiting game that keeps you clinging to a false love. Co-dependency is a very real thing and so is trauma bonding and all of these things probably have happened to you over the course of your experience with a narcissistic partner. There are so many reasons why we fall back after doing so well…after feeling stronger than ever for the first time in forever…and we must be gentle with ourselves and at the same time be sane in our response to it.
You don’t have to give in to the feeling of missing this very bad person and you also don’t have to forgive a narcissist – not now or in the future. When you start asking yourself if he will return, if you feel like you’re suddenly waiting again, if you don’t understand why you’ve taken ten steps back after moving five steps forward, understand that you are in recovery much like any other addict.
Look hard at your intention with everything you do, say, and think during this time. Deep down, you don’t want the narcissist back. Not really. I know you don’t. The good sex (when he obliged) or the funny joke (when he felt like entertaining you) or the “I love you” (when he was telling you what you needed to hear to give him what he wanted) or the tenderness (that he extended to everyone when duty called)…none of that is worth more your freedom and happiness, my friends.
Remember that throughout the relationship and during every break-up or silent treatment, our suffering changed nothing. If our suffering changes nothing, then we might as well try to be fucking happy!
Stay strong and be safe in the journey!