Will the Narcissist Come Back? Maybe…but then what?

will-narcissist-returnThe 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.

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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.

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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.

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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!


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  • Johnny

    June 13, 2017 at 2:17 am Reply

    I was in relationship with this woman for 1 year. She exhibited all the characteristics of a narcissist and the behavior of NPD. My background is a bit different. I am married and she was divorced (I know I am morally wrong). Lately, she used a trivial issue and requested the end of our relationship. At first, I beg her not to dumb me but she was very adamant. We lived together and I took all my stuff away last Thursday night. These few days I have been thinking of her and want to call her to say how much I missed her. However, I also found that my life is actually better and happier without her. I practiced your No Contact policy. Out of nowhere, she texted me and advised that there are few pieces of my clothes left behind and asked if I want them back. I think this is just a pretext to reconnect with me. I don’t want to fall into her honey trap again. How can I answer her politely so that I will not offend her but at the same time letting her know I will not go back to the relationship? Is it a good idea to make up an excuse that I will be on foreign job assignment?

    • Zari Ballard

      July 10, 2017 at 12:55 am Reply

      Hi Johnny

      I apologize for the delay in responding, my friend. I am sure much has happened since you’ve written. In my opinion, you do not have to be polite about anything and that usually doesn’t work with a narc anyway. Please write again and I will look for it. Did you respond to the hoover?

      I just sent you a copy of my book about the female narcissist to your email in hopes that it will help you get a full understanding of what you have been dealing with. Enjoy and stay strong!

      Zari xo

  • Lee

    May 9, 2017 at 3:21 pm Reply

    I just was told by my therapist that my X has narcisisstic D/O. She said it is totally abnormal for him to not have called me even to see how I am. I went thru a difficult time. ( been 5 months, and not answering anything from me) thinking it was my fault. As I started to read more and more the light went on. The pieces came together. It was 4 months of writing on line and 4 months in person. maybe not weekly ( distance) so he stayed here 3-4 days, fully together, talking half the night, going to the beach, making great meals, going for breakfast, watching the birds, great sex ( even tho he has ED) We are an older couple. I am very good looking for my age. All I heard was how beautiful I am, my legs, my walk, how he never met anyone like me, marry me, then I’ll never get married. Then I want to see you one a month, maybe I’ll ( him) be the one who is uncomfortable, I’m taking my friend Mary out, we are only friends, I am commited to you, be there Sat, then Sunday, then Sat , then Sunday then texting he was just leaving for my house, making him 90 minutes late. I was pissed, sent a few texts, nothing horrible. He came in said he was going back, not ready for a relationship, that he wanted to do whatever he wanted whenever he wanted!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Then an e mail, I will always respond to you, acceptance that this is what I want. Meaning him. Then a dear John letter that he said was written with love and to read it every day!! hello. The end said, Someday I will come back and we will go to ( all the palces we went) as friends and he didnj’t know when!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!) if he ever needs a FIX from me, I am done. I was blind. He was the most loving man I ever met–ha ha. Get this, I even trusted him when he said he had a lot of therapy after sexually abusing his daughters. I cried for months. He was making me sick. I am done. I must have an issue to be so trusting. All life’s experiences to make us grow and learn. Yes, they are exciting and funny and fun, bright, he was a scientist. but TOXIC. I’ll have to get used to a little bordom and sanity.

    • Zari Ballard

      June 4, 2017 at 1:06 pm Reply

      A little boredom and sanity will be well worth it in the long run. Thank you so much for sharing and don’t ever give up!

  • liz

    April 30, 2017 at 2:34 pm Reply

    Just posted something buy I don’t want my full name on it as it asks . Please can it be taken off moderator . I woujd be found out and this could be dangerous . Thanks

    • Zari Ballard

      May 3, 2017 at 11:47 pm Reply

      I see it and I’ll do it right now. For future reference, you can use any name that you want. For now, I’ll remove your last name as you did:)

    • Anne

      May 30, 2017 at 5:39 pm Reply

      Ive been reading so much on your site. It had helped me in so many ways. Ive been in a narcissistic relationship for 3 years. He up and left me with no closure, just disappeared. He finally emailed me after 20 days of disappearing. His email was full of exaggeration to make me seem crazy. It read: ” Ask yourself the question,”why?” Or should I just copy and paste all your ranting for 3+ days and late night bitch sessions about a key?

      I would have called if you would have remained somewhat bearable to talk to, however, you were acting like a lunatic and by no means am I obligated to call you after all that.

      So, thanks for everything and I hope things work out for you, Jake, and your mom and best of luck with all your endeavors. ” so, like a idiot i wrote back ” what went so wrong after vacation? What were you going to tell me when you called?” And his response was “Well considering Virginia just left 2 days ago and only hung out for less than a day it would have been just a hello. Anyways, I’ll write when I get to it. Until then just stop. ” i didnt respond. Virginia is an ex he still talked to and she was coming into town to visit- is what he told me. My question is…. why would he contact me in this manner if he has already discarded me? Thank you

      • Zari Ballard

        June 11, 2017 at 6:56 pm Reply

        Hi Anne,

        He contacted you to see if you’d respond which you did. It was a twisted hoover and you took the bait. When narcs reach out in a hoover, they just want, initially, to see if we’re in the queue. This is why blocking their number and all the ways for them to contact you whenever they feel like it is the only way…


        • Anne

          June 11, 2017 at 8:07 pm Reply

          Your book is awesome! Best thing I ever purchased! Thank you

          • Zari Ballard

            June 11, 2017 at 10:40 pm

            Thank you so much, Anne! Enjoy! I’d love it if you left a review on Amazon:) Would be so appreciated…..xo

  • liz

    April 30, 2017 at 2:31 pm Reply

    I found this great article as I’ve been searching for answers all day on Internet . I am current a state of confusion after being disgarded last night . Again. Wandering if he will return . He is away on a trip and I missed him the minute he left . He called me last night . I told him I missed him . He said I sounded different . He was cold and Interrogated me about my day . Nothing said about his trip. He then accused me of texting a man while he’d been away ,said he can’t do this anymore and not to step foot in his house again . He was so nasty . I am bewildered and confused at these false allegations . He does not cope well when we are apart and this gas happenned before. I now know what’s coming …days if silent treatment then he will send me a sad face …then contact. This time I want to manage it differently . I’m sick of the sleepless nights and being completely distracted from my children for days at a time while I wait . I will be ordering the book. Thankyou

    • Zari Ballard

      May 7, 2017 at 9:11 am Reply

      Hi Liz,

      Oh I do hope you get my book because you will think that you wrote it. Your guy sounds like my ex. Look, the reason that he is accusing you of all these ludicrous claims is BECAUSE HE’S UP TO SOMETHING, GIRL. Typically, whatever they are accusing you of is EXACTLY what they are doing, getting ready to do, or have already done at that moment. This is a foolproof theory. He copes JUST FINE when you are apart, believe me. Do not mistake his accusations as backwards terms of endearment. He is not jealous, he is not worried…he is simply projecting his own present secret behaviors onto you so that he can start a fight and buy himself some uninterrupted vacation time with whomever. I’d be willing to bet money on it.

      Get my book, girl. My ex did the exact same things and I talk all about it. I also talk about how I finally got a handle on the anxiety and worry. This guy is not worth it and he will never ever change. He likes things just the way that they are and he will be mean and/or seduce and discard you whenever it’s convenient for him…like NOW while he is on his “trip” and wants some uninterrupted fun time. It’s a scam…don’t buy into it a second longer. Enjoy the book because you will see yourself on every page…


  • MissK

    April 27, 2017 at 1:00 am Reply

    I was in a relationship with my now ex boyfriend for two years. He was my best friend and confident. A year into our relationship was when he began to use silent treatment on me. We had a argument in a restaurant and he proceeded to not talk to me for a week. The next time we argued he gave me silent treatment for two and a half weeks. After that I told him that if he ever tried to do that again I would not be the one to break the silence. He said he really struggles with his anger and looses control which is why he can’t stop the silent treatment once he starts. He apologized and promised to never do it again. 6 months later he asked me to allow a woman to move in with him as a favor to his friend. I said I was not comfortable with that so no. He then said he told his friend no but then stopped talking to me. Initially I thought he was just busy at work and then after I few days I called him at work and he picked up. After a few mins on the phone I realized that he hadn’t been busy he was just ignoring me and giving me silent treatment. Even so I told him I was not willing to argue with him over this and said I looked forward to seeing him the next night. Friday he never arrived. I then sent him a text telling him that I was not sure why he was treating me so badly and ignoring me. It has been 8 weeks since I sent that text and since we last spoke. I decided that I can no longer take the stress of pleasing him. I realized that he required me to betray my values and self worth in order to please him. I realized that our relationship was about serving him and that he did not care about making me feel happy and secure in our relationship. As heartbreaking as it all has been I still love him but accept that our relationship has to end. I just sometimes can’t understand how someone who says they see their future wit you by their side can treat you so badly. I have depressed moments where I cry myself to sleep and miss him terribly. I also struggle letting go of our plans to get married and start a family. However I know that this is not the kind of relationship I deserve and I certainly would not want to have children growing up in a such a toxic environment. Is there any form of help for Narcissists? I just can’t help but wonder if there was anyway I could help him break out of this cycle. His father and mother abandon him so I feel that this stems from that. However I know that real change comes from a desire within and can’t force him to want that. Any tips as I would like to have some advice for him when he finally returns. I have decided that we could never be in a relationship again however I would like him to get help and healing for his own future

    • Zari Ballard

      May 8, 2017 at 2:45 pm Reply

      Hi MissK,

      Wow…girl, if you read any of my books, you will see that we were both in relationships with the same guy. Mine, too, started with the silent treatments after about a year with each one being a little longer than the last and all of them starting for no good or apparent reason. I remember being surprised just like you when one day, after a few weeks of devastating silence, he simply opened the door as if nothing had happened. I did 13 years of that. In my opinion, once a person is prone to subjecting people to silent treatments, this never goes away. They will do it until the end of time. All I can say to you is to be strong and keep moving. I have an ominous feeling that one day, your ex will just push that reset button and reappear, hoping to pick up where he left off with no repercussions. This is what these people do. They vanish without a trace and with no explanation so that doors are left ajar. Leaving “partners” in limbo land ensures a narcissist that they will always have old supply to fall back on or at least reach out to when they need to.

      I can tell that you have a clear vision of who this person is and how futile any future would be with this person. When I read your post, even though it was very sad, I felt good about that. Most people struggle with this insight or at least it takes a long to get to that point after what we think might be the final discard (which technically is never final). No, you could NEVER have “fixed” him…there was absolutely nothing you could have done. Ever. Don’t worry about getting him help because he wouldn’t appreciate it nor would he agree with you that he even needed it. He will breeze through life just fine, sister, even while hindering your own progress. Make this a clean break and do not fall for any relationship reset events.

      Again, read my first two books if you can. You will be stunned at the similarities. I allowed it to go on for thirteen years because it was too much for me to wrap my head around (his behaviors). Much of it is so passive-aggressive that it catches us off guard. The truth, however, is that it is mean and disrespectful. Narcissists know right from wrong, they just don’t give a shit – and that is about as unfixable a mindset as it gets. You are doing the right thing and blocking his number so that he can’t some lame attempt to reel you back in at some future date would be even better.

      Stay strong and thank you for sharing…

      Zari xo

  • Kirsty

    April 14, 2017 at 10:35 am Reply

    Thank you so much for sharing your story. I have been in a relationship for the past year with a guy who seemed the perfect family man. Couldn’t do enough for me and my children, doing the house up, talks of marriage, taking my kids out and referring to them as “our” children. I have to admit that on the front of it he was amazing to us. However behind the scenes for the last 6 months that he would go back to her when she could prove herself to him, that he was living with me as a place to stay. Even getting her to pay his bills whilst he wined and dined me. A previous ex caught him out though and informed me. Turns out this is a lifelong habit of his. I was so confused at first but the more I read of your posts the more I relate to what I knew of him and what I since discovered. You have really helped me rationalise my situation and feel ready to deal with what comes next whether that be the silent treatment or hoovering. Thank you

  • Alice

    March 14, 2017 at 3:47 pm Reply

    Hello Zari,

    Really great post , I was with my N for nearly a year but it felt like a lifetime. Probably because all of the heart ache and waiting for him to call or text.

    He seemed like Mr perfect at the start, complimented me all the time, told me I didn’t need a lot of make up, took me on massive shopping trips, even painted my toe nails !
    I felt like a princess.
    But then I wouldn’t hear from him for a month at a time, I thought he was crying and upset like me at first , little did I know N’s have second life’s.

    I found out everything was a lie, he was in debt and bad with money, he was never materialisticly happy. He always wanted something new, something more…. why wasn’t I enough I used to think?

    He told me I couldn’t have social media , I couldn’t drink, I couldn’t smoke, I couldn’t have certain friends. Things went down hill fast. But by then it was to late, I fell in love with this make believe man who even my parents adored at first.

    I see what a monster he is, and thank god it was sooner rather then later. I think about him everyday , but I’m starting to get stronger.

    And all these posts like yours helps a lot. I shall be buying your book.

    Alice x

    • Zari Ballard

      March 24, 2017 at 10:34 pm Reply

      Hi Alice,

      If you read my book, you will definitely relate to my story. It’s all about the control and the manipulation…something every one of us here has unfortunately had to control. Thank God you’re free….embrace and enjoy it!

      Zari xo

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