Codependency and Narcissists: Let’s Make Something Go Right! (Part II)
In Part I, we discussed how the codependent is a perfect victim for the narcissist. We discussed our working definition of codependency: a system of distortions that exists on a continuum. Codependents learn personality traits that interfere with knowing one’s self and others. Codependents take care of others, often ignoring or tolerating their abuse, avoiding confrontation, and enabling the “bad” behavior. Narcissists, on the other hand, come with three significant distinctions: grandiosity, seeking excessive attention, and lack of empathy.
Now, we are going to give the codependent some tools to get out from under the clutches of the narcissist’s seven deadly sins.
For so many reasons, I believe everyone affected needs to do their codependency work. Codependent behavior can negatively affect you spiritually, physically, emotionally, financially, and/or psychologically. If you have done your codependency work, including flushing out your core of shame, you won’t have anything you are hiding. Being free of shame is like winning the lottery. Life without shame is the first step to living life with dignity, which never includes being at the beckon call of a narcissist.
I don’t need magical thinking if I am on the road to living life authentically. I develop my tools so I am not afraid of the truth. The more competent I become in living authentically, the more competent I will be at truly assessing the people who join me on my journey. I will begin to spot the narcissist because I am not distorting reality to build him up with magical thinking. The narcissist won’t find me attractive because I am not organized around supporting his/her narcissism. The narcissist wants to surround himself with people who support the seven deadly sins. Being in codependent recovery won’t allow me to support these sins.
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