I’m part of some Facebook fora for survivors of narcissist abuse. One topic I see coming up very frequently amongst survivors is whether their ex partner or spouse loves their new partner more than they did them.
I can’t say that I can relate. I have yet to ask myself that question since, as far as I know, my husband has not cheated on me, nor do I know if he has new supply in the form of another woman. Yes, supply. I wouldn’t call it partner or girl-friend or any other such thing because a narcissist is never going to be a partner to anybody. He or she does not know how to be such thing.
Now, between us, I once asked my mother if she thought that he might have someone else. My mother gave me a sarcastic look, even a sarcastic laugh, and added that he was too stupid to even know how to cheat and pull it off successfully. While he might have been able to dupe me about certain things, she added, he didn’t have the brains to hide it and I would have eventually found out, sooner than later. Knowing my mother, I have to agree that she’s probably right.
Going back to the question, “Does my ex love her/him more than he/she ever did me?,” while I can’t relate to that as of today, I can rephrase that to “Has my husband ever loved me? At all?” I eventually found the answer to that question on my own and I also found validation on some books I have read and I’m currently reading. The answer to those questions are exactly the same:
A narcissist is incapable of loving. Period.
It doesn’t matter if the target or victim is old or new. Because believe me, his new girl-friend or her new beau will eventually turn old and boring for the narchole, same way you did.
Narcholes cannot love. They don’t know how to. They are incapable of mature love. All they know is superficial infatuation. Yes, for a while, they can attach; however, they cannot bond, at least not in a healthy, mature way. This is the very reason why it is so darn easy for them to discard us victims and old supply.
Think about it this way. They are like a child who gets bored easily. I’m pretty sure we have all met a kid like that. You give them a new, shiny toy and they are delighted. The world is a party and a fun place to be. It’s Christmas or his or her birthday again. But this particular child is one who gets bored very, extremely easily.
(If you have been around children, you know that not all of them get bored that easily. The child we are talking about is in a constant state of boredom and it doesn’t matter how shiny the toy could be, he or she will be bored with it extremely soon.)
So once the toy become old news, this child looks for another new, shiny toy. And he or she finds it and it’s Christmas in July all over again… for just a while. Oh, you better have a running, open credit at Toys ‘R Us because you will need to provide a new toy fast, before he or she throws a tantrum and creates havoc in your peaceful world. Placate the storm before it reaches shore.
But this child is insatiable, always looking for a new, shiny, and different toy that can provide some new excitement feeling that he or she might have not experience before. And there’s a new one! Child is all happy again, in cloud 9. And now the new toy is old and doesn’t sparkle anymore. So the cycle repeats itself.
Oh, something changed in the equation. Toys ‘R Us is closed. For good. Out of business. At least in this boy or girl’s town. All of a sudden, the child remembers he or she has a trunk and some shelves full of toys. They are not shiny and new as they once were. But since Toys ‘R Us is out of business, at least for now, he or she searches in that trunk and browses the shelves until, voilá! There’s one that can satisfy this particular feeling he or she might be craving at that particular time.
Does it make sense? You were a shiny, bright, beautiful toy when he or she first met you. (Ehem, since my fingers are getting tired from typing “he or she” and “him or her” so much, I’m going to refer to the narc
hole as a “he” and the victim as a “she” for the sake of time and my nails.) Finally, a woman who could provide everything he wanted (at least for now.) Someone different. Have you also noticed how little children imitate the sounds or phrases toys may make? I know that. I have a 2-year old. If the toy dances, she stands up and dances, as well. The narc hole will do the same thing. He will mirror your every aspiration, your every desire, dream, quality. Just know one thing: He does not have any of those qualities himself. For a while, he will borrow them from you. Or he will completely suck them out of you like Dracula sucked the blood off his victims. Once the victim had no more blood left, Dracula would move to new supply. But quickly. Dracula needed his fix.
Your narc is not much more different than Dracula or that bored child. He will even move to new supply when you have already stopped or failed to provide him with the much needed supply he was taking away from you, many times while still being with you.
The discard starts a lot earlier than the actual discard you may have been served on a platter. You might have set a healthy limit. You might have started to see through the cracks in the mask. His false self has to be protected at all cost. Hence, the discard… until he needs you again for whatever he’s not getting from whomever is the current victim.
While my husband might have not found another person to replace me with, believe me that he has found other types of replacements. If a person would not do, something else does. For instance, he’s on the computer all day long. All of a sudden, he’s started to talk a lot of time to his one and only friend (a flying monkey by now,) who in my opinion is also a victim of a narc. This man was my husband’s best man at our wedding and God knows how much his wife abuses him. And he still allows it for. So there! You see? My husband always had some supply from this old friend. (I use the word friend loosely since a narcissist does not know what true friendship is, either.) My husband does not speak to his friend for months at a time; only when he needs supply.
He has also replaced me with other things. It’s not always a person that provides supply to a narcissist. It can be status, a job, a shiny car or boat, membership to a country club or anything that would give him prestige.
To close this entry, a narcissist in incapable of mature love, the kind of love that requires sacrifice, reciprocity, good communication, compassion, compromising, and empathy. All he or she is capable of is infatuation. And even that is superficial. They can attach, but they cannot bond, at least not in a healthy way.
The latter (not being able to bond) is the reason why it is so easy for them to discard their victims when they grow tired of him or her. You might have stopped catering to their ego and he does not feel like or even want to put the effort needed in any relationship to maintain it. Once the infatuation is over, he can no longer maintain the façade. So before you see even further into their false self and their real persona, you’re out.
If you’re asking yourself the questions at the beginning of this blog entry, please stop doing so because you’re still letting your narc
hole control you. Because that’s all they are about: Control, power, attention. Don’t give him or her the pleasure. You have already spent a lot of your time and energy during your relationship with him or her. By the way, during that time, you were dying emotionally, very slowly. The path to healing and safety is to get completely away from the relationship. That’s why you need no contact. If you cannot completely get away because of shared child custody, for example, then keep the contact to a minimum. Your attorney can advise you on how to respond when the narcissist is stepping out of boundaries and trying to hurt you and hoover you again.
And if you’re asking yourself why he or she had to choose you, think about it this way: Even though the narcissist might have seem to you as very confident, deep inside (or not even that deep because narcissists do not have much depth) they identity is broken and missing parts. The narcissist needs to extract from their victims the qualities they do not possess. Like Dracula who needs blood to survive, a narcissist lacks empathy, so it extracts it from the victim; lacks compassion; lacks even intelligence. That’s another one. You’re probably a lot brighter than he or she. Since they lack the qualities and intelligence we possess, they need to conquer us and devour and destroy those qualities in us.
Narcissists need attention at all cost, as well as approval, affection, and adulation. But most of all, they need a reaction. It doesn’t matter if it’s a negative or positive one. They need us to react so they can feel alive. They are so dead inside that they have to recourse to this insidious behaviour to feel alive and kicking.
So do that. Be alive and kicking and stop worrying what he or she might be doing or with whom he or she might be. Live your life. I know it is hard to get over the trauma of realizing that you fell in love with a fake person. (This is what’s called a trauma bond.) It does take time. But it’s possible. Today, I know I’m feeling better than yesterday. And every day I will feel better than the day before. At least in this regard. Because I’m accepting the fact that I am better than my husband would ever be. I’m capable of loving, of compassion, of true love. Even though I fell in love not with a real person, the fact that I was able to love my husband at some point is enough proof to me that I am not like him and that I can love. He just doesn’t know what he’s actually discarding. His loss, not mine actually.
You’re beautiful. You’re strong. You’re a caring person. We both are. We’re not broken toys. We shine. And our narcs are blind. Actually, they are blinded because we shine so much that they cannot see us, so bright we shine. Now, let’s get out there and shine together.