The path to healing is really a lifelong commitment. It will require incredible amounts of courage and determination to not let your past rule your future. I can't tell you that this will be easy because it certainly won't be, but what I can promise is that without a doubt; it will be worth it. You may have days when you feel like you’re doomed to repeat the destructive patterns predetermined by your genetics, but it is important to remain the master of your own path. You are strong enough to overcome your wounds, and begin to live in peace around people that accept you for the beautiful human that you are, and without fear of judgement. You have already done the hardest part by seeing the truth and everyday spent living life as your authentic self is a real triumph. How you deal with your narcissistic parent, must be your own choice. However, I will state, that in my particular situation the only option was to go no contact indefinitely. This is the case for most children of narcissist parents, but it takes a massive amount of strength to get to that point. For many years before I went no contact, yearned for peace and quiet away from this emotional vampire, yet I stayed out of loyalty and fear. I knew the blame would fall squarely at my door no matter how much I tried to explain my side of the story. This is exactly what did happen, and of course it was completely devastating. For the people that are suppose to love and understand you, to turn around and call you a liar; was a crushing blow. It's the sad truth of what narcissism actually does, which is make YOU out to be the crazy one. The saying, 'the truth will set you free' is one of my favourites and it is accurate. Although you will always feel wounded by this truth, in the end, it will help you to heal. Once you begin to see things for what they really are, you will be unable to go back to living under the dark cloak of a narcissist.
Signs Of Growth And Healing
1) You become more empathic- as you begin to heal your perception of pretty much everything alters for the better. You have always been more empathic than most, due to your past and you may have begun to see that as a curse. To feel the pain of others, when you have so much of your own becomes overpowering, and so you put walls up to prevent this. When you leave the behind narcissists,’ you begin to feel less threatened. You no longer need the armour to shield yourself from them, and you begin to feel comfortable showing your sensitivity. This grows over time, and you start to accept your softer side as part of the real you. It now feels safe to be your true self. You may even begin to attract like minded people in to your life, the ones that genuinely care, and would not seek to manipulate this part of you. 2) Self care increases dramatically- I became very interested in holistic healing (healing entirely as a whole while considering social and mental factors) when I first began this journey. You begin to see that you must go right back to the beginning of your life to uncover your true self. For healing to be successful, you must start by uncovering old wounds and having the strength to face the pain associated with them. You begin to ask yourself why? More frequently, why does this person make me so angry? Why do I agree to things that make me unhappy, in an effort to keep the peace? Essentially you are working backwards. When a person or situation upsets you, instead of just reacting, you work on finding the real cause of your anger, it is self analysis or reflection, with the aim improving your thought pattern. 3) You begin to set clear boundaries with the people around you, and stand up for yourself more readily when people try to cross those boundaries without guilt attached. 4) You become more assertive at dealing with negative situation. Instead of burying your head in sand and allowing doubts to fester, you slowly become less of a people pleaser, and begin to put your own needs first. 5) You start to recognise that all your fears are wildly overblown and/or your fears are not your own at all, but passed down through your family. Fear is used to control people's beliefs, we see examples of this all over the world, it is largely used by the media and within governments to keep people subservient and malleable, but unless you are aware of this, you will fall victim to its intent. Narcissists work in exactly the same way, they use fear in order to control you. 6) You grow daily as an individual and evaluate how far you have come regularly. Once you separate yourself from toxic relationships, you begin to see your blessings more prominently. 7) The real you starts to appear, you don't fear showing your true self to the world anymore. You have a true sense of feeling free and at peace, in a way that you have never experienced before.
8) Slowly you learn to let things go. People that pissed you off, past hurts, rejection, abandonment and ignorance are situations that hurt all of us. However, adults children of narcissist parents, will feel this pain MUCH deeper than the average person, and sometimes we can hold on to that hurt, for far longer than is healthy. By learning to feel the hurt and move forward, you are showing another sign of self love. Remember, the narcissist wants you to suffer, even better if it's of their making. Make a conscious decision to work on letting things go, it doesn't mean all is forgiven or that you will ever forget what happened, but try to live in the 'present' and prove them wrong! Why would you want this person or people, to have a permanent space in your head everyday, chewing away at your sanity? Don't allow them to have that power over you! 9) You see how much love you have to offer once you remove toxic energy, and you see that it can feel good to love. It doesn't need to, nor should it be a painful experience, but one of happiness and genuine emotions. You also begin to understand what unconditional love should feel like, and no longer take people at their word but rather observe their actions very carefully. 10) You identify when you are in 'self-sabotage mode' much quicker and correct yourself. Sabotaging yourself is a way to prevent feelings of shame down the line.You hurt yourself in a controlled way, rather than risk someone else hurting you down the line in a way that you have no control over. Which is crazy when you really consider it... Because what if that day would never have arrived? That person never would have hurt you, but you were too afraid to trust them and now the opportunity has passed. It is always better to fail, and then improve, rather than become stagnant and keep all your walls up for fear of experiencing pain- none of us can escape pain, it is part of life. 11) You accept that everyone messes up once in a while and it’s OKAY! It is actually better than okay, it's completely necessary in order to grow. You learn to stop drowing yourself in toxic shame, imperfections are healthy. 12) You begin to see your awesomeness in all of its glory. Sure, you have terrible days sometimes, days you want to shut the world out, but look how far you have come! Give yourself some credit for showing bravery and courage while facing extreme adversity. 13) You start to accept that there will be no closure, your narcissist parent is not going to change or 'get better' . Malignant narcissists don't believe there is anything wrong with them, the problem is all you (or anyone else that challenges their warped sense of superiority.) There will be no hugging it out and starting again. You find closure by arming yourself with knowledge of this disorder. Learning how, and why they are this way and talking to someone who understands your anguish. Working towards a place of acceptance, and seeing that none of this was your fault is what will finally begin to set you free. 14) You are kinder to yourself - self care extends to the messages you tell yourself. Negative self-talk is debilitating, and you have to work hard at stopping it before the spiral starts. Retraining your thought process can be an uphill battle for quite some time but once you master it, you become faster at recognising negative patterns and quitting them. Your mind is not your friend and it will derail you if you don't manage it correctly. Taking time to love yourself by running yourself a hot bubble bath, lighting some candles, eating well ,getting a massage, exercising or taking a much needed holiday; are all things that you deserve. You don't have to spend a fortune to feel good. Denying yourself pampering that rejuvenates your soul is self -neglect. The old me would convince myself that it didn't matter how shitty I felt, as long as I look okay on the surface. This is what narcissist do, they hide behind a masks and it is extremely unhealthy. You will begin to see that what is most important is looking after you from the inside first in order to feel whole. You will stop denying yourself real, nurturing care. 15) You have a tonne of resilience! Call it stubbornness or a total lack of willingness to give up, to have made this far with your sanity is incredible. By reading these points you have a desire to do better and to keep learning, and that is amazing. We are much stronger than we could ever imagine and every time we push ourselves that little bit harder, the more resilient we become. 16) You start to trust yourself without the need for validation from others. Instead of needing to run every idea or problem by a friend or partner, you start to trust your intuition more, and begin to validate yourself. You realise that you are an adult, and that you are only one responsible or qualified to make your own life choices. You do not need others to give you the go ahead to live your own life. 17) Your quality of life begins to improve in all areas. As you are starting to see your true valueand worth, you undergo a serious upgrade in beliefs and goals. Your mind suddenly opens to all possibilities; you want more from life, and you see that you do truly deserve quality. You deserve more caring friendships, in-depth relationships that strengthen your bonds with the people you care about, and equal partnerships with genuine respect. You become better at distinguishing between who really cares, and who has an agenda. You are no longer attracting narcissists into your life. 18) You finally feel free and peaceful. 19) Nutrition improves with a goal of being the strongest and healthiest version of you. You remove self imposed limits and begin to feel excitement at all the things that life has to offer. 20) You now truly believe that you deserve so much better than the life you were previously living, and now have the confidence to pursue abundance and genuine happiness.