This question is often asked in narcissistic abuse recovery groups and I regularly hear it from survivors I’ve worked with…
“Why am I a narc magnet and how do I stop it?”
While it’s true that narcissists scope out people who are highly empathetic with wonderful characteristics and traits that they want to drain and use as supply… not all empaths fall victim to narc abuse.
Ugh, I know I’ve invested my time and energy into more narcs than I care to admit… but see, it’s not so much that we attract more of these toxic kinds than anyone else. The narcissist approaching us is not the problem. The problem is that we keep them around for so long despite the red flags, mind games, questionable behavior, & constant shoddy treatment.
People with a strong sense of self-love, self-respect, and powerful boundaries will have no trouble walking out the door as soon as they realize this person’s behavior disturbs their inner peace and negatively affects their well-being. They don’t second-guess themselves or make excuses for the less than respectful treatment.
Can you relate?
- Your relationship starts off perfect, but after some time, you notice the other person’s behavior no longer match that of the person s/he was at the beginning and you’re always left feeling anxious and insecure. Regardless, you stick around looking for little signs that things might go back to the way they were.
- You constantly make excuses for the other person’s bad behavior. They’re having a bad day… they had a bad childhood… they just need someone to be patient… etc.
- You rarely (pretty much never) end a relationship when the other person proves themselves to be selfish and disrespectful. Instead, you keep giving them chances to change for the better.
- You think you’re properly guarding your heart but have not set clear boundaries and standards that you enforce about the behaviors you will or will not tolerate.
If these things resonate with you, please…
- Take time to identify any childhood traumas buried in your subconscious.
- Review your boundaries and enforce them.
A relationship with the narc takes these old injuries that were pushed to the very back of your mind, right up to the surface. How? By the narc’s promises of unconditional love, acceptance, and security during idealization. You may have learned to cope to be without those things… perhaps even believe that you don’t deserve them. So when you received them in the intensity they were presented to you, it reminded you of how much you’ve wanted them and your abuser became the “source” of relief to these injuries. These are the “broken” parts that urgently needs your attention… because if you don’t heal them, you will always have that subconscious longing and remain susceptible to being taken advantage of by toxic people.
Boundaries are the mental, emotional, and physical rules and limits we establish to protect ourselves. These are things we instinctively say, “No” to as they defend us from being violated by others. Those who have set and enforce strong boundaries are able to effectively filter out unhealthy people who might otherwise compromise their mental and emotional well being. However, without clear boundaries, you will very likely allow toxic people to remain in your space longer than they need to be there.
When there is no more trauma to trigger and you have strong boundaries that you enforce, even a swarm of narcissists won’t be a match for you!
So no, you are NOT a “narc magnet”… I thought I was one for the longest time until I found the root of the problem and discovered how to efficiently correct it. And with the proper self-work, you can become narc proof too! Get started with my free 14-day recovery bundle, with daily email support, 2 step-by-step guides, and access to my online group coaching session.