Are you always the giver in your relationships?
You give so much of your heart and your energy, and you work really hard to keep your relationships afloat.
Often, it feels like you do ALL the work, yet your needs don’t count.
Instead, your partners are quick to take, take, take—and make their desires center stage.
They outright dismiss or minimize your thoughts, your opinions, and your worth. Often, they’ve been pretty mean to you.
If they’re not full-blown narcissists, they sure act like it at times.
Yet you make all sorts of excuses for your partner’s behavior. Sometimes, you cover for them. You’re too embarrassed to admit how unequal your “relationship” really is.
After all, your partner may be extremely charming to the rest of the world. That’s how you fell in love.
But behind closed doors, it’s an altogether different—and painful—story.
If you heard of a girlfriend being treated the way you are, you’d recoil. But somehow, you tolerate a whole lot of bad behavior.
It’s happened more than once, and you don’t know what to do about it. You feel completely powerless to change this awful dynamic.
Even more painful is that other women you know don’t seem to have this problem. In their relationships, they’re respected, heard, and held up as equals.
You’re flabbergasted by how their men go out of their way to please them.
You overhear your friends talking to their husbands—making requests of them and expressing what they want—and it leaves you speechless.
You’ve never been able to talk with your man that way. You’d be too afraid to upset him and cause conflict. Whenever you did try to speak up, you were met with defensiveness, silence, or your ultimate fear: distance and abandonment.
You want nothing more than to have healthy, happy love with a man who cherishes you and makes you a priority, but this seems like something reserved for other women—not you.
Just how are you supposed to go from having such an unhealthy romantic past to finally experiencing an equal partnership where you are free to be yourself and free to relax into love?
For the past 20 years, I’ve dedicated myself to helping women break through even stubborn, long-standing negative patterns to finally create a healthy, happy relationship.
Many of these women had historically been involved with men you would call narcissists.
These relationships were anything but equal. What may have started out as a storybook romance became a nightmare they couldn’t seem to extricate themselves from.
Their boyfriends and partners soon took over the relationship—and everything would revolve around them. The men would be charming one moment and then turn devastatingly dark the next.
Most of these women were stuck trying to figure out WHY they kept getting into these painful relationships.
They thought that if they analyzed the relationship and their childhoods enough, they’d hit upon some golden truth that would set them free to create happy, healthy love.
And THAT was the problem right there.
Trying to reason your way out of patterns never works. You can decide that you attract narcissists because your father was one and you’re doomed to repeat the pattern. But there is absolutely no power in creating change from this place.
When you are stuck in a “why” from the past, you are placing yourself in the victim role. You are thinking that love—or lack of it—is something that just happens TO you.
In order to change your negative patterns, you need to shift into seeing how your love life is happening THROUGH you.
My work focuses on making you aware of the choices you are making that generate your negative patterns.
In the case of being involved with narcissists, how it’s happening through you is that you yourself have a habit of putting your attention on the other person, and rarely, if ever on yourself.
You’ve probably dismissed your own feelings and needs, and yet you became hypervigilant to the needs of the other person.
When you look closely, you’ll see that you disconnected from yourself so that YOU didn’t even know what you felt and what you needed.
If you’re really honest with yourself, and you look at the way you showed up in your previous relationships, you’ll notice a distinct pattern.
You felt devalued by your partner, but the reality is that you were sourcing your worth from him.
You weren’t heard or respected, but the truth is that you did not express your needs because you felt other people would not care about them.
In short, you believed that staying safe in a relationship came from keeping your own needs and feelings quiet.
So, while on the surface it looks as if you’re involved with someone who dismisses your needs and your values, if you look at yourself you will see that you neglected yourself first.
You received narcissistic behavior because you mistreated yourself, and because you showed up in a relationships as a dimmed-down version of yourself, eager to please and placate— at the cost of your own wellbeing.
But a true narcissist or someone who is behaving narcissistically can’t play out his role with you if you don’t allow yourself to participate.
The moment you start making new choices that honor your feelings and needs, you will no longer be a magnet for narcissism. Either the person will search for another willing participant, or they will step up their game and evolve their own toxic behavior.
Because the moment you evolve yourself, you’re sending a message loud and clear that the behavior is not tolerated. That person will have to find another victim, or they’ll need to change and evolve into their own better self.
Look at everything that’s been getting in the way of having a truly fulfilling, equal partnership, and start making new choices that add up to a new future of healthy, happy love.
Pause and ask yourself what you’re feeling and needing, and you’ll make this visible to other person.
When you make these mini course-corrections, people respond wildly differently. And the payoff is immediate. It’s not years of therapy to get over your narcissistic father.
As you practice and see how change happens, you’ll feel stronger and more secure, and this will encourage you to stay the course all the way through becoming completely magnetic to the love you want.
Even the smallest choices add up to big changes both in the people AND in the behaviors that show up in your love life.
Lots of love and bye for now,
P.S. Imagine how you’ll feel when others begin taking care of you. Hearing you, respecting you, and showing up in ways that demonstrate that they value and honor you.
When you change the way you show up in your relationships, the people in your life will change too. And if others in your life truly are narcissists, then when you change, they’ll move on to someone else—leaving you free to create happier, healthier and more fulfilling love.