Healing the emotional and psychological wounds caused by trauma or abuse, whether originating from childhood experiences or violating adult relationships, is crucial for recovery and personal growth.
After a relationship with a narcissist or psychopath, survivors often emerge with a changed worldview, questioning how a loved one could harbor such darkness. Many individuals find themselves entangled with partners exhibiting toxic behavior, potentially with symptoms of a personality disorder. This unhealthy bond can be detrimental to one’s well-being. While it’s unjust that another person’s disorder necessitates healing, prioritizing emotional health and well-being is paramount.
Abusive relationships are far from “normal” and typically inflict trauma upon the victim. Exposure to a harsh, controlling, and punitive partner can shock the nervous system, leaving the survivor feeling mentally and emotionally attacked. Therefore, a specialized approach of active healing is crucial post-trauma.
From a self-help stance, recovery from narcissistic abuse will involve a combination of the following:
- Effort toward healing
- Conscious shifts in thinking
- Consistent self-care
- Firm boundaries
- General understanding of pathological narcissism
Seeking the help of mental health professionals experienced in personality disorders, trauma, and abusive relationships can also greatly benefit survivors.
While not all interactions with personality-disordered partners are traumatic, the likelihood is high that an abusive partner will cause significant distress and disrupt their partner’s emotional equilibrium.
Self-compassion and mindfulness practices are often pivotal components of the healing journey. Healing often requires a strong and knowledgeable support system, including a skilled therapist or empathetic, well-informed friend. The gentle strength of healthy individuals during difficult times can be invaluable, while input from toxic or emotionally unhealthy individuals only exacerbates pain.
Emotions need safeguarding, soothing, nurturing, and gradual regulation. Treat your traumatized self with the same gentleness, patience, and care you would extend to a traumatized child.
Relational experiences, both positive and negative, can influence one’s functioning, making it crucial to concentrate on the brain while recovering from narcissistic abuse. The events and experiences in a person’s environment significantly impact neuroplasticity, or the brain’s capacity to rewire and change.
Providing the brain with a chance to adjust can aid in the healing process in a number of different ways. It is essential to keep believing in recovery after experiencing narcissistic abuse.
Over time, you may feel relief from symptoms like cravings, heartbreak, rejection, confusion, anger, numbness, and an inability to experience joy. Perseverance is the key to reaching your goal of inner calm, self-acceptance, self-efficacy, and love.
If you want to go more into the educational component of healing after narcissistic abuse – join me in Neuroinstincts Academy where you can enroll in the course: How to Use Neuroscience to Accelerate Recovery.
Best ♡ Rhonda Freeman, PhD | Neuropsychologist
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