It’s not easy to break the painful cycle of narcissistic abuse.
Leaving a relationship with a narcissist and/or psychopath is really hard for a whole bunch of reasons. Nevertheless, many women escape and build better lives for themselves. I’m in the process of doing that after having been in an emotionally abusive relationship (aka a pathological love relationship / PLR) for about two years.
As part of my healing, something interesting has happened: a new male has moved in with me. I know it’s quick, maybe too quick, but so far it’s working out fairly well (with the usual ups and downs).
Here are some of the ways my new housemate is the same and/or different from the narcissist who is no longer in my life:
- It’s all about them. Always. That said, the ex is very close to the top of the spectrum of narcissistic traits while the new one is nearer the bottom.
- Both are handsome. But the ex is ugly on the inside.
- The ex targeted, pursued and seduced me; I picked out the new one from a whole bunch of other potentials.
- The new guy will never devalue or discard me. The ex did both repeatedly.
- The new one doesn’t lie; the ex does so pathologically.
- Neither of them has balls – the new one physically, the ex metaphorically.
- The new one eats a fraction of what the ex did; I’m saving a big whack on food bills!
- The ex wanted sex frequently, and was admittedly good in bed. The new guy has no interest in sex and is only interested in lying in bed (probably because of 6 above).
- The ex talked a lot. Mostly about himself. He interrupted me frequently. The new one doesn’t talk at all. About anything. He never interrupts me.
- The new guy purrs endearingly for no reason. The ex, on the other hand, flew into random out-of-proportion rages over basically nothing.
- They both sleep a lot. The new guy tends to curl up in a ball and takes up little room; the ex liked to stretch out and took up a lot of space (literally and metaphorically).
- The new guy gets frisky at night. The ex was frisky at night too. And in the morning. And at noon. And in between.
- They both have a huge sense of entitlement.
- The new guy is furry all over. The ex shaved everywhere.
- The new guy eats my plants. The ex ate just about everything else (in large quantities).
- The new one will never cheat on me; the ex cheated at will with whomever, with impunity and without protection!
- The ex occasionally made the bed or did the dishes. The new guy never does either.
- The ex fed me a constant stream of B.S. The new guy meows occasionally.
- Neither of them has any empathy.
- Neither of them really gives a hoot about who they’re with as long as they are fed, watered and stroked.
- They both cry and look pathetic when they want something and you don’t give it to them.
- They both tend to be passive aggressive; the ex much more so than the new guy.
- The ex was forever on his phone. The new guy doesn’t have one.
- The new guy doesn’t lie. Oh wait. I said that already. But it’s worth repeating. I hate lying. Hate, hate, hate it.
- The ex spent hours in the bathroom (see 23 above). The new guy does his business and gets on with whatever he was doing beforehand (e.g. sleeping), although he also likes to spend some time in the bathroom (see below)
- The ex faked love; so does the new guy. But at least the new one doesn’t lie about it (see 24 above).
- They both like to play cat and mouse. The new one literally; the ex metaphorically.
- They both go round and round in circles that don’t make sense: the new guy plays with his own tail. The ex played with my head.
- The new guy enjoys peace and quiet interspersed with moments of joyful exploration and discovery. The ex prefers a roller coaster of drama and chaos in a hurricane of constant stimulation.
- Both of them are kind of heartless, which is understandable and acceptable in a cat but not so much in a human being.
© 2020 Susan Macaulay. I invite you to share my poetry and posts widely, but please do not reprint, reblog or copy and paste them in their entirety without my permission. Thank you.