Narcissistic Abuse Recovery - Anna Szabo of Online Discipleship For Women

Dear #TruePrincesses! Being a victim of Narcissistic Abuse is debilitating. Every aspect of your personality and life is devastated by abuse, manipulation, cruelty, and deception. Learn my story of Narcissistic Abuse recovery. Explore how YOU can heal and finally be yourself.

“Whoever Brings Blessing Will be Enriched” Proverbs 11:25

Bless Online Discipleship For Women


What Is Narcissistic Abuse?

Let’s define Narcissistic Abuse so that we can understand what recovery means and takes, which is determined by the substance, methodology, and intentions behind this behavioral pattern.

Narcissistic Abuse is a behavioral pattern of a conscience-lacking individual aimed to manipalate their trapped Narcissistic Victim by executing Gaslighting, Projection, Silent Treatment, Discarding, and other mental manipulation tactics and therefore inducing the victim to doubt her reality and question her own discernment, to be confused and mentally incapacitated, to experience excessive fear and paralyzing anxiety, to suffer from debilitating depression and suicidal ideation – all resulting from narcissistic mental cruelty.

Anna Szabo

There’s a really good insight provided by Frederick Burkle.

Narcissism as a Deficit of Conscience


While normally our conscience may not always work as we might wish, when one’s conscience suffers a severe deficit or complete absence, the consequences are devastating, even though the one so affected will likely not see it this way.

Without a functioning conscience, a person’s experiences are dramatically different from those whose conscience is normally and functionally endowed.

That lack of a conscience affects not only one’s emotional, moral, and social functioning capacity, but also one’s ability to think properly and acquire knowledge and understanding through thought, experience and the senses (what is referred to as “cognition”), distorting it and limiting its depth and scope.

Our conscience grows from empathy (the ability to understand and share the feelings of another), based primarily on our attachments with others and what we learn from those relationships.

The capacity for empathy is low to non-existent in narcissists.

Without empathy, an individual cannot relate emotionally to other people. This excludes the possibility of forming deep, meaningful bonds with them.

Unable to understand and appreciate that other people are sovereign individuals with rich and complex inner lives, a narcissist sees them essentially as objects that can be used for his need- and wish-fulfillment, without any consideration given to their needs, wishes, humanity, or dignity.

His empathy deficit, combined with his grandiosity, also makes him blind to how his behavior affects others. Why, he is great and everyone knows it, and there is no need to question that; although confirming it, loudly and often, is desired and expected. It is the least that others can and should do.

Narcissists sometimes understand, intellectually at least, what makes people tick; but that understanding does not translate into empathy.

They do not care about other people’s experiences, only their own.

These are frequently tied to multiple lies and fabrications about their education, pedigree, accomplishments, war duty, business exploits, name dropping and the influence they claim they have with important people, and the love and respect everyone has for them, all designed to bolster their own ego in the eyes of others.

They may use the language of higher values, especially when it serves their needs; but a closer examination reveals that their understanding of values is severely truncated and shallow.

They can talk, for example, even forcefully and convincingly, about the needs of humanity and other noble-sounding topics; but that talk is rarely, if ever, followed by any meaningful actions, particularly if such actions do not result in a gain for themselves.

Often their grandiose ‘speechifying’ about human ideals is in direct contrast with their private behavior — cold, callous, and/or brutal — toward people in their lives.

While a narcissist can mimic empathy and some semblance of concern over human ideals, he cannot mimic guilt, an emotion that is completely beyond his ability, even if only intellectual, to comprehend.

It is partly a function of his grandiosity: he’s never guilty of or responsible for anything wrong because he has placed himself above humanity with its constraining social mores and silly emotional concerns.

But it also stems, and predominantly so, from his empathy deficit that makes him unable to experience the pain of others. And, as he is always justified in everything he does in his own eyes, the sheer notion of responsibility, much less its affective and more unsettling component of guilt (when responsibility is broken), is alien to him.

We can see this inability to experience guilt in the narcissist’s ‘non-apology’ apologies in those unfortunate situations when he is forced to issue a statement of contrition for public consumption.

He may sometimes express superficial remorse for something (“Yeah, I shouldn’t have done it”), but the sentiment is shallow, fleeting, and upon closer inspection related to his regret over causing harm to himself (his reputation, etc.) and not to the harm he inflicted on another person.

The narcissist tends to be very sensitive to shame, which he perceives as humiliation: a blow to his ego (sense of self) and/or a threat to what he sees as his important status compared to others. This sensitivity is the reason why he tends to lash out at those who shame or appear to shame him in any way. His reactions to shame are grossly disproportionate to the “offense;” he will hold grudges and seek revenge sometimes till death, his own or his “offender’s,” whichever comes first. 

Shame is so difficult for a narcissist to tolerate because it arises from an exposure of some flaw of his to others. He has many serious shortcomings; but in his own eyes he is perfect and surpasses everyone else, as he will let you know time and again, directly and not.

He must retain this grandiose delusion of superiority and perfection at all costs because this is all he has. His bigger than life persona hides an empty inner core, devoid of meaningful values and attachments.

A prick of shame exposing any flaws in the narcissist’s façade has a potential of deflating it and effectively destroying him since there is nothing of substance to fall back on within his inner world.

The rage with which a narcissist reacts to shame or humiliation thus deflects attention from his inner emptiness. That rage is often a predominant emotion, particularly in a narcissist who feels chronically deprived of the admiration and perks he believes he deserves (and as his need for admiration and perks is bottomless, so then is his sense of deprivation).

It does not take much to provoke it: a simple, neutral observation or a request can suddenly unleash it on an unsuspecting victim.

The vehement defense against shame is also another reason why a narcissist never takes responsibility for his behavior. Why should he anyway, when he’s perfect and does no wrong?

Nothing is ever his fault, no matter how great a mess he creates. Responsibility is always projected outwards, onto others, as blame. Admitting his culpability in anything could lead to shame and cracks in the false façade that defines his character — and his ego won’t allow that. It is a matter of life and death, ‘psychically’ speaking.

The flip side of his shame intolerance is his desire to humiliate others. It comes as naturally to him as breathing. He derives pleasure from inflicting on others the kind of pain he himself wants to avoid at all costs.

Humiliating other people is almost as satisfying as winning. It helps that the two often go together in the narcissist’s life. In fact, humiliating others is itself a win.

And he likes to win.

Frederick Burkle

I experienced this lack of Narcissist’s conscience in my relationship with my Narcissistic Mother growing up and in my marriage with the Narcissist in 2016-2017.

It was scary.

The Narcissist in your life is cruel, deceptive, and evil.

The abuse you endure causes you to experience so many painful feelings.

Let’s discuss.

How the Narcissist Makes You Feel

Dealing with the Narcissist lacking conscience, I felt:

  • Deceived
  • Disillusioned 
  • Devalued
  • Disregarded
  • Dehumanized 
  • Distressed 
  • Devastated
  • Debilitated  
  • Disoriented 
  • Disassociated
  • Detached
  • Discarded 
  • Depressed

Eventually, I became completely suicidal in both cases: in my childhood, I tried to commit suicide twice. In my marriage with the Narcissist, I was under the care of two counselors to help me survive suicidal ideation.

Being the Daughter of a Narcissistic Mother

A Narcissistic Mother has an inflicted ego and needs admiration constantly. She is possessive of you because you are her Narcissistic Supply to fuel her Ego. She is threatened by your growing independence so she acts as if you were inferior and she were superior to you. She believes that you are here to fulfill her needs. She doesn’t recognize you as a human being who is free to live. She feels you owe her for giving you life and the debt can never be repaid.

She smothers you with constant criticism, abuse, and violence.

Being raised by the Narcissistic Mother feels painful.

You feel unloved, unworthy, unwanted, and unimportant.

This list of feelings can help you find the right words to describe how you feel after being subjected to Narcissistic Abuse.

Living with the Narcissistic Mother, I felt angered by her constant abuse and violence, I felt confused as to why I was even born, and I felt hopeless so I tried to commit suicide twice at 11 and 12.

“Narcissistic mother causes unexpected pain, unforeseen chaos, unintended confusion, and unavoidable regrets by imposing unreasonable guilt and shame on you to make you suffer.” (tweet this)

Anna Szabo

I wrote two poems about the Narcissist mother.

"Narcissistic Mother" #PoemsFromGod

A Narcissistic Mother is egotistical and incapable of love or compassion.
She is self-centered and only for herself does she experience any genuine passion. 
She is a caregiver who treats her daughter as if the child’s aim were to be of service.
She deliberately persuades her daughter that she’s unloved, undeserving, unwanted, and worthless.

A Narcissistic Mother is one moment raging and next moment she is smiling.
She behaves unpredictably; her goal is to win people’s compliments and admiring. 
She has an enmeshed relationship with her daughter where her child’s needs don’t even exist.
If she decides to appear nice, she is pleasant, but in a split of a second, she’s violent and pissed. 

She uses her daughter to fuel her ego or get some money;  that’s pretty much it.
And of course, her true motives she would never openly to anyone admit.
A Narcissistic Mother sucks the life out her daughter and says straightforwardly: “I just want you dead!”
Her daughter ends up with a long-lasting emotional trauma and a life of deep healing ahead.  

10/6/18 © Anna Szabo, JD, MBA

"Narcissistic Mother Hates Her Daughter" #PoemsFromGod

Narcissistic mother inherently hates her daughter’s guts.
She sees her as another woman, of whom she’s envious and jealous.
She might be nice to people, even kissing others’ butts,
But to her daughter she is never good or kind or simply zealous. 

Her only goal is to destroy her daughter permanently.
She’s filled with hatred, animosity, and ill will.
She says “I want you dead!” to her descendant personally.
She tries tenaciously her child to harm or kill. 


7/17/19 © Anna Szabo, JD, MBA

Narcissistic Abuse in Romantic Relationships

Many Christian women I know encountered narcissistic romantic partners. I myself married one and almost gave up on life as a result.

I was severely suicidal.

In fact, manipulating you into suicidal ideation is the Narcissist’s very goal. He wants you dead as soon as you begin seeing his true colors.

He uses clever mental manipulation tactics with which he confuses you, devastates you, and intimidates you.

The Narcissist is a man who abuses his trapped Narcissistic Victim by executing Gaslighting, Projection, Silent Treatment, Discarding, and other mental manipulation tactics and therefore inducing her to doubt her reality and question her own discernment, to be confused and mentally incapacitated, to experience excessive fear and paralyzing anxiety, to suffer from debilitating depression and suicidal ideation – all resulting from his mental cruelty.

Anna Szabo

The Three Stages of Narcissistic Abuse Cycle:

  • Idealization
  • Devaluation
  • Discarding

The Six Warning Signs of Narcissistic Idealization

  1. We have so much in common
  2. We have the same hopes and dreams
  3. We share the same insecurities
  4. You are so beautiful
  5. I’ve never felt this way in my life
  6. We are soul mates

Narcissistic Idealization is a trap set up by the Narcissist to deceive you, lure you in, groom you for the upcoming mental cruelty, and to lay the foundation for your future doubt: you will soon be abused but you’ll be thinking: “He is such a good guy, he is not abusing me intentionally! He means well, I know him!”

Narcissistic Devaluation Begins When You Become Disillusioned about the Narcissist

You start noticing that the Narcissist speaks about you in a condescending manner and he disappears, disregards the relationship you thought you two were having (actually, it’s just you who is having this relationship, he is only viewing you as a tradable commodity, you are food to him), and he begins practicing mental cruelty on you through:

  • Gaslighting
  • Projection
  • Silent Treatment
  • Reptilian Stare
  • Smear Campaigning (blackmailing you in order to present himself as a victim in the eyes of others)

He despises you, hates you, flips out on you, and you experience his narcissistic rage as soon as his Ego-puffing mask comes off.

Narcissistic Discarding Is Ought To Manipulate You Into Suicide

Here’s the truth: the Narcissist wants a relationship where you could be his Narcissistic Supply and serve on-demand praise, admiration, and compliments whenever he needs those, which is typically 24/7, otherwise his Ego can’t survive.

Other than giving him his Narcissistic Supply, you have no purpose to exist. Nothing about you interests the Narcissist.

Such things as you, your feelings and desires, bonding, responsibility, accountability, financial obligations – none of these things matter to the Narcissist.

You only exist in terms of your value to his Ego.

The three stages of Narcissistic Abuse Cycle can repeat over and over again leading to the development of Narcissistic Abuse Victim Syndrome.

Narcissistic Victim Syndrome is a condition triggered in a victim of Narcissistic Abuse after she’s lived through multiple cycles of Idealization, Devaluation, and Discarding induced by the Narcissist. Unlike Domestic Violence, where abuse is visible, Narcissistic Abuse is invisible. It’s an intentional, well-thought through, premeditated, and repeated assault on the psyche of the victim. The impact is cumulative often leading to suicide.

Anna Szabo

Sometimes, Narcissistic Abuse in romantic relationships is also accompanied by Domestic Violence, which can result in physical injuries and even death.

Domestic Violence

According to Justice.gov, the term “domestic violence” includes felony or misdemeanor crimes of violence committed by a current or former spouse or intimate partner of the victim, by a person with whom the victim shares a child, by a person who is cohabitating with or has cohabitated with the victim as a spouse or intimate partner, or by any other person against an adult or youth victim who is protected from that person’s acts under the domestic or family violence laws.

The 16 Mind-Boggling Domestic Violence Facts:

  • Every 9 seconds a woman is beaten in the United States
  • Between 3 and 4 million women are battered each year
  • Among all domestic violence victims, 85% to 95% are women
  • Women ages 20 to 34 endure the highest rates of domestic violence
  • Domestic violence is the leading cause of injury to women
  • Women are more likely to be attacked by someone they know than by a stranger
  • More than 10 million women are physically abused by an intimate partner in the United States of America annually
  • Intimate partner violence is experienced by 1 in 4 women
  • Victimized by an intimate partner in their lifetime through severe physical violence (beating, burning, strangling) are 1 in 4 women
  • Stalked by an intimate partner during their lifetime to the point in which they felt very fearful or believed that they or someone close to them would be harmed or killed are 1 in 7 women

  • In the United States, 19.3 million women have been stalked in their lifetime
  • The presence of a gun in a domestic violence situation increases the risk of homicide by 500%
  • In fact, 19% of domestic violence involves a weapon
  • Intimate partner violence accounts for 15% of all violent crimes
  • 72% of all murder-suicides involve an intimate partner; 94% of the victims of these murder-suicides are women
  • Domestic victimization is correlated with a higher rate of depression and suicidal behavior

Click to learn more about Domestic Violence now.

The Five Areas of Life In Need Of Healing After Narcissistic Abuse

You have been violated, manipulated, abused, blamed, shamed, humiliated, separated from your friends, sleep-deprived, intimidated, and devasted mentally, emotionally, spiritually, physically, and financially.

You need healing, which takes intentionality, effort, and time. There’s a lot of work that needs to be done to recover from abuse. Let’s discuss the five aspects of life that need healing.

How to Heal from Confusion as a Victim of Narcissistic Abuse

Narcissistic Gaslighting, to which you were subjected for years, left you feeling confused. You doubt your own reality. You don’t understand what’s real anymore. You don’t trust yourself. You question your every decision. You feel incapable and debilitated. You feel paralyzed by overwhelming anxiety because you have no idea what’s true anymore.

Journal every day about what’s happening, what you’re thinking, what you’re feeling, and what you’re learning. Journaling helps you get grounded and track with everyday life effectively, as well as to review your progress.

Use my Biblical Affirmations to declare your mental stability.

Biblical Affirmations on Wisdom and Decisiveness 
#52Devotionals


I am wise

I am wise and I show a good judgement.
Jesus has become for me wisdom from God.
My experiences for the hope of others are meant.
My wisdom is with the Holy Spirit intact.
 
1 Corinthians 1:30 | Isaiah 11:2 


I am clear and focused

God gave me the power of sound mind.
I'm clear. I'm focused. I'm disciplined.
Confusion and doubt are both behind.
I'm productive, and to the Holy Spirit I’m listening.
 
2 Timothy 1-7 | 1 Peter 1:13


I am intentional

I'm intentional, and my life has a great purpose.
God Himself appointed me to make an impact in the world.
I am leading my life committed to compassion and service.
I am doing exactly what, I know, to do by Him I’m called.

Jeremiah 1:5  | 1 Corinthians 7:17


I am decisive

I'm decisive because God makes my path straight.
I ask Him for direction, and He gives me wisdom graciously.
His plans to propel and prosper me are always great.
I lean on Him and pursue His will in my life tenaciously.

Proverbs 3:5-6 | Isaiah 30:21 |  James 1:5 

Biblical Affirmations memorized and declared out loud daily will help you renew your mind. The Bible says we must take every thought captive and submit it to the truth of Christ.

With my truth-based Biblical Affirmations as your armor of protection, you can defeat the poisoning mental garbage auto-suggested to you by the Narcissist for such a long time.

Know who you are in Christ.

The truth will set you free from the bondage with the Narcissist.

How to Overcome Depression as a Narcissistic Abuse Victim

First, you need to understand your depression. I wrote 15 poems about depression. Everything I know, everything I experienced, everything I practiced to overcome depression, I shared it all through my poems, which I also published on YouTube to help you access them at your convenience.

My 15 Depression Poems:

  1. Depression Definition
  2. Signs of Depression
  3. Am I Depressed?
  4. Depression Symptoms
  5. What Causes Depression?
  6. Feeling Suicidal
  7. Suicide
  8. Depressed
  9. Depression and Anxiety
  10. Depression and Suicide
  11. How to Deal with Depression
  12. How to Help Someone with Depression
  13. Scriptures for Depression
  14. Natural Remedies for Depression
  15. How to Not Be Depressed

The 12 Types of Depression:

  1. Major Depressive Disorder
  2. Treatment-Resistant Depression
  3. Subsyndromal (Atypical) Depression
  4. Persistent Depressive Disorder
  5. Premenstrual Dysphoric Disorder
  6. Bipolar Depression
  7. Disruptive Mood Dysregulation Disorder
  8. Postpartum (or Perinatal) Depression
  9. Seasonal Affective Disorder
  10. Substance-Induced Mood Disorder
  11. Psychotic Depression
  12. An Illness-Related Depression

The Six Most-Known Depression Risk Factors:

  1. Personal or family history of depression
  2. Major life changes, trauma, or stress
  3. Certain physical illnesses and medications
  4. Differences in certain chemicals in the brain
  5. Trauma and overwhelm, severe stress, and hopelessness
  6. Violence, neglect, abuse, and financial troubles

The 20 Most-Common Depression Symptoms:

  1. Persistent sad, anxious mood or feeling of emptiness
  2. Feelings of hopelessness or pessimism
  3. Irritability
  4. Feelings of guilt, worthlessness, or helplessness
  5. Loss of interest in favorite activities
  6. Decreased energy or fatigue
  7. Moving or talking very slowly
  8. Feeling restless or having trouble sitting still
  9. Difficulty concentrating, remembering, or making decisions
  10. Difficulty sleeping, early-morning awakening, or oversleeping
  11. Appetite and weight changes
  12. Thoughts of death or suicide
  13. Aches or pains, headaches, cramps, or digestive problems
  14. Crying outspells
  15. Anger outbursts, irritability, or frustration
  16. Slowed thinking and inability to make decisions or respond to questions
  17. Trouble thinking, concentrating, and remembering things
  18. Unexplained physical problems, such as back pain or headaches
  19. Memory difficulties or personality changes
  20. Isolation, wanting to stay at home rather than going out to socialize and explore

RELATED: Depression 101

European Neuropsychopharmacology in their Volume 24, Issue 10, October 2014, Pages 1630-1640 showcases the following impact of depression on your brain:

Psychomotor retardation is a scar of past depressive episodes, revealed by simple cognitive tests

Psychomotor retardation (PMR) has been recognized as one of the most fundamental features of major depressive disorder by the earliest psychiatric authors and is reflected in the use of various contemporary classification systems. Descriptions of PMR have remained consistent in the literature; most portrayals of depressive symptomatology emphasized disturbances in speech, facial expression, fine motor behavior, gross locomotor activity, or ideation.

Psychomotor Retardation in Depression

Suffering from psychomotor retardation in 2017 from prolonged depression as a result of mental cruelty, I spoke slowly, moved slowly, was foggy-minded and confused, unable to concentrate, and with significantly handicapped thinking, which only worsened my depression as I myself was able to witness that I was dysfunctional.

How I Survived My Suicidal Depression:

  • I admitted my depression to myself and others
  • I went to secular trauma therapy on Fridays
  • I went to Biblical counseling on Wednesdays
  • I attended two support groups at two churches
  • I leaned on my women’s small group
  • I grieved and wept and grieved and wept
  • I stopped resenting my depression and faced it
  • I wrote out “my life sucks and it sucks to be me,” which allowed me to weep and grief instead of holding my head up high while dying
  • I realized and accepted my psychomotor retardation, so I had a lot of chores undone, slept a lot, and learned how to meditate, I didn’t wash my hair because I had zero energy, it fell out and I had a bold spot, which I also accepted (my hair grew back and I’m healthy now)
  • I didn’t take showers or wash my face, it was covered in acne, and I also accepted that (my skin healed and looks amazing again now)
  • I prayed on my knees every single day and often cried myself to sleep on my knees praying; surrendering to God helped me just be
  • I stopped judging myself and started learning how to treat myself as a friend, I practiced self-compassion and took my recovery slowly, I wrote myself compassionate letters and gratitude notes
  • I accepted everything in my life: I lost my marriage, job, money, dignity, and myself, I was a totally different, insufficient, retarded person who was completely taken advantage of by the evil Narcissist, and it was ok
  • I asked for help: prayers, financial support from my church, and a break from my friends who were puzzled by my collapse (no one could imagine that I was suicidal)
  • I journaled, wrote poetry, and studied the Bible, including who I am in Christ, Spiritual Warfare, Armor of God, and God’s Promises
  • I gave myself time to just be, heal, sleep a lot, weep… and then I changed my life overnight!

How to Not Be Depressed:

Decide to focus on the FUTURE

Depression is focused on the sad past. Take every thought captive and submit it to the truth of Christ. Study, memorize, believe, and dwell on God’s promises for your future. Have hope.

Allow yourself to face your SADNESS

Depression is profound sadness, it won’t go away unless you face it. If you avoid facing painful feelings, they’ll compound over time and eventually destroy you, so grieve, cry, weep, and have a genuine self-pity party.

Practice FORGIVENESS

Depression is bondage with the past. It’s worsened by the grudges you might be holding against people who hurt you (or God), so forgiveness is key. Forgive not because of them but because of you: forgive and let go for your own sake and because Jesus asked you to.

Develop a healthy ROUTINE

Depression is about emotion. Emotion is created by motion. If you want to change your emotion, change your motion. Start doing hula hoop, you’ll laugh so hard AND your heart rate will go up, your whole being will be changed, and you’ll take your first steps out of the depression pit. Crawl, don’t try to run. Be consistent. eat healthily. Sleep 8 hours uninterruptedly. Limit social media scrolling. Go kayaking or hiking. Spend time with friends. And read the Bible.

Build genuine RELATIONSHIPS

Depression is about isolation. Be intentional about spending time with friends doing something meaningful and positive. Be vulnerable and open up, bond with your friends and experience healing.

Journal to process life events in WRITING

Depression is confusing and debilitating. It impacts your memory and brain function. Journaling helps you stay grounded and see your life on paper. It helps you make sense of things and review your journey. Commit to writing in your journal daily, and include gratitude there, too. Also, capture your thoughts and everyday events.

Have Biblical FAITH

Depression is destructive. It destroys your hope. Hope is critical to wanting to be in your own future. Without hope, you can become desperately suicidal. Hope is fueled by faith. Have faith. Trust God’s promises. Spend quite a time with Him and pray. Listen for the Holy Spirit speak to you. Cast your anxieties on God who cares and ask for divine comfort and healing. Send me your prayer requests so I can lift you up to God: use the comments section below.

Dealing with your depression effectively requires your unwavering commitment to Narcissistic Abuse Recovery.

Once you know what depression is all about, taking consistent action to help yourself is the only way out of the darkness and hopelessness.

How to Deal with Suicidal Thoughts After Experiencing Narcissistic Relationship Abuse

I am not a therapist of any kind. All I have is my personal experience of Narcissistic Abuse Recovery. I was severely suicidal. I survived.

If you want me to share with you truthfully how to deal with suicidal thoughts based on my personal experience, here is my process:

The fist step RELATES TO HAVING SUICIDAL THOUGHTS

I understand that I am a person predisposed to suicidal thoughts so I don’t expect to not have them, meaning I’m ok with the fact that I can have suicidal thoughts, I humbly accept my humanity 

The second step RELATES TO FIGHTING SUICIDAL THOUGHTS

Fighting suicidal thoughts is something many people tried and failed by committing suicide because they got tired of fighting themselves

I tried fighting my suicidal thoughts and it created such hopeless overwhelm and paralyzing anxiety, I was exhausted

I was fighting them because I wasn’t able or willing to accept the fact that I was having suicidal thoughts or that I was a person who may experience suicidal thoughts

I felt that I was better than suicidal thoughts

God humbled me and I realized I’m not better than anything

I’m a human, and accepting my own humanity helped me accept the very having of suicidal thoughts, as well as my suicidal thoughts themselves

The third step RELATES TO ACCEPTING SUICIDAL THOUGHTS

Accepting them liberated me so much. It humbled me. It helped me experience compassion for myself as if I would experience compassion for a close friend who’d share their suicidal thoughts with me

The fourth step RELATES TO DEALING WITH SUICIDAL THOUGHTS

Dealing with them is very simple for me now but it was hard before. If and when they come, I create time and space for them. And in that time and space, I let each thought come and be and I confront it as the Scriptures say by taking each thought captive and submitting it to the truth of Christ

I hope this was valuable to you. You need to also focus on what God says about you – your identity in Christ.

How to Handle C-PTSD as a Victim of Narcissistic Abuse 

Complex Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (C-PTSD) is a condition that results from chronic or long-term exposure to emotional trauma, over which a victim has little or no control and from which there’s little or no hope to escape.

The Seven Common Causes of C-PTSD:

  1. Emotional, physical, or sexual abuse
  2. Being kidnapped, enslaved, or trapped
  3. Being violated repeatedly
  4. Feeling dehumanized and commoditized for a long time
  5. Being subjected to mental cruelty
  6. Enduring exposure to personality splitting, alternating realities, Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde sort of behaviors
  7. Facing crisis conditions repeatedly over an extended period of time

In 2016, I was diagnosed with Complex PTSD.

Christian Guided Meditation by Anna Szabo of Online Discipleship for Women
How to Handle C-PTSD as a Victim of Narcissistic Abuse 

Complex post-traumatic stress disorder is a psychological disorder that develops in response to a prolonged, repeated experience of interpersonal trauma.

My Narcissistic Mother was the first contributor to the “prolonged, repeated experience of interpersonal trauma.” Then, in 2016, when I got married and was subjected to Narcissistic Relationship Abuse in the context of the marriage, my psyche shattered.

C-PTSD overwhelmed and debilitated me, I was crying all the time, even at work, I had daily panic attacks, I was paranoid, I was exhausted and scared.

It took a lot of time to be myself again, and my journey of Narcissistic Abuse Recovery has been laborious.

Everything I’ve learned while healing after Narcissistic Abuse, I am sharing with you.

I discovered that to help me with flashbacks and painful memories today best works self-care.

The Eight Self-Care Strategies That Help Me:

  1. Meditation
  2. Journaling
  3. Poetry
  4. Hiking
  5. Reading
  6. Quiet time with God
  7. Prayer
  8. Learning about narcissism to help me remember: it is not my fault, it is not me

Being yourself is your top priority.

How to be Yourself Again After Narcissistic Abuse

You’ve been violated and manipulated. Repeatedly, you’ve been taken advantage of and abused. You’ve been trapped. You’ve felt powerless and defenseless.

You’re feeling anger and bitterness now, which come from feeling trapped and wronged repeatedly. I didn’t just feel angry at the Narcissist but also at myself for not leaving him and for loving him.

You’re feeling confused, incapable, fearful, worthless, and indecisive. You’re overwhelmed by all the trauma and paralyzed by all the confusion caused by the Narcissist.

You left but you experience loneliness. You doubt your decision. You want to be yourself but you don’t know if you actually can. You wonder if you should give the Narcissist another chance.

To be yourself, you have to figure out what you want, who you are, how you are in the world, why you are here and what’s your purpose, as well as where you’re going.

This work may involve such topics as money, sex, feelings, career, dating, goals, focus, body image, and many others.

Read books about the topics related to what you had experienced. Gain understanding.

Knowledge is power if you use it, so arm yourself with knowledge, it’s a great antidote to ignorance and naive. It will empower you to view both the Narcissist and yourself differently: you must shrink the Narcissist and empower yourself.

RELATED: How to Get Empowered

Set goals.

Alice: Which way should I go?
Cat: That depends on where you are going.
Alice: I don’t know.
Cat: Then it doesn’t matter which way you go.

Lewis Carroll, Alice in Wonderland

I am an award-winning author of a goal-setting book called “Turn Your Dreams And Wants Into Achievable SMART Goals!” and I’m often hired to facilitate workshops about goals.

During the workshops, I usually ask how many people in the room have goals already set. Interestingly enough, many people say that they do.

However, when I ask them to share their goals, they say something like this: “I want to be healthy,” “I want to run my business successfully,” “I want to be a better parent,” and the like.

Out of many people, there was only one person in my experience who showed me her written goals that she carried with her all the time. It contained a detailed description not only of what she wanted and desired but also of how she was going to achieve that and when.

So, set your goals.

Figure out your values. Your values help you establish boundaries and allow you to focus on what really matters.

The Five Essential Steps to Uncovering Your Personal Values: 

  1. Start by answering the following questions: “What drives you crazy?” “What will you absolutely not be able to tolerate?” “Demonstration of which personal characteristics will for sure cause you to walk away from a person or an opportunity?” Write those down. 
  2. In contrast, who are the people you admire? Why do you look up to them? What values do they demonstrate with their actions? Write those down. 
  3. Now, it’s time to reflect on yourself. Do you hold the same values you admire in others? On a blank piece of paper, make two separate columns. In the first column, write down the values you admire in people and already possess yourself. In the second column, list those qualities you admire yet are still to acquire. 
  4. As you draft your table of values, ask yourself from time to time: is this particular value supporting or diminishing my mission in life? 
  5. After a few drafts, you should have the final document that contains somewhere between five and seven core values you can stick to and use as your guidance in life.

Write out your mission now.

It will help you get out of bed in the morning. It will empower you to focus on the future where you make a difference instead of the past where you were subjected to Narcissistic Abuse.

The Seven Important Steps to Realizing Your Mission:

  1. Identify what is already good about your life and what worked for you so far overall. Try to outline common themes. Write everything down. 
  2. Develop a list of attributes that have served as the foundation of your successes and accomplishments. 
  3. Specify what hasn’t worked well for you so far in life, career, health, or relationships. 
  4. Note your personal qualities that contributed to those downfalls. 
  5. Name the good things you would like to see happen in your life. 
  6. Create a list of attributes you think you will need to possess to turn the above-mentioned good things into your reality. 
  7. Produce a paragraph with a few simple, easy-to-remember sentences that will help you navigate the journey of life.

Once you figure out who you are, what you value, what you want, where you’re going, how to get there, and what really matters to you, then, you will be able to be yourself and achieve your wildest dreams, no matter the past pain.

Remember that you can do all things through Christ.

You can survive and thrive.

You can be successful.

You can have peace and joy.

You can heal.

Narcissistic Abuse Recovery FAQ

1. Will I ever be myself again after the Narcissist destroyed me?

Yes, you will be able to survive and thrive after Narcissistic Abuse and be yourself if you leave your abusive environment, get to a safe place, figure out who you are and what you want, define your mission, set goals, and take consistent action daily to help yourself.

2. Can I ever recover from Narcissistic Abuse?

Yes, you can recover from Narcissistic Abuse. Right now, you may feel broken and hopeless. It’s because you’ve been injured. However, you can get empowered and move forward in life. You can get to a better place. You are in charge of your life, your thoughts, your behaviors, and your actions. Switch to an internal locus of control, and you’ll be able to transform your life, mental health, physical wellbeing, and every aspect of your life. You are not a victim. You’re a victor!

3. How can I survive without the Narcissist?

You can survive without the Narcissist if you truly understand what’s been done to you and why. You were only a supply of praise and admiration for the Narcissist. You were never in an actual relationship. My mother was not in a relationship with me – she used me. My ex-husband was not in a relationship with me – he used me as food for his Ego to provide an on-demand supply of praise and admiration. There was never a relationship, so you can survive NOT being used and taken advantage of constantly. You can survive without the Narcissist if you focus on who you really are and what you want from life.

4. How do I heal from Narcissistic Abuse?

You heal from Narcissistic Abuse by gaining powerful knowledge about what the Narcissist has done to you and why, by realizing your own power, by practicing self-care, by setting meaningful goals, and by taking consistent action. Go to therapy. Learn a new skill. Pursue your passion as a hobby. Get aspired with something challenging and go after your new dreams! Stay grounded in your identity.

5. What are the stages of healing after Narcissistic Relationship Abuse? 

Denial, anger, bargaining, depression, and acceptance. First, none of it can be accepted as the truth: you are loved and the abuse is not real. Then, you get angry as you begin realizing the truth: what’s been done to you and why. Next, you bargain with the Narcissist, yourself, and God because you want something different than what the truth is and you try to get that but the truth is hard to miss. The truth is apparent. The Narcissist doesn’t love you or care for you, you were used and abused. After that, you become depressed from disillusionment and complete hopelessness. Finally, you accept everything and you move on in life.

6. Is it normal to go through ups and downs while recovering from Narcissistic Abuse?

Yes, ups and downs on the journey of Narcissistic Abuse Recovery are very normal. You’ll want to give the Narcissist many second chances, but the abuse will only worsen, so there’s no reason for those second chances. Face your pain and accept it. Set goals and move toward your exciting future now!

7. What feelings are ok to feel after experiencing Narcissistic Abuse?


All human feelings are ok to experience. Don’t be afraid of any feelings. Anger, anxiety, bitterness, fear, rage, sorrow, grief, revenge – all need to be processed but not acted upon, and so do love, temptations to go back, desire to reconcile, etc. Those feelings are valid and must be processed but acting upon them will hinder your healing.

8. What are some common Narcissistic Abuse Recovery mistakes? 

Going back and giving multiple second chances is the most common mistake. Not taking care of yourself, not eating properly, not sleeping, not spending time outside, not maintaining meaningful social relationships, not reading, not exercising, not drinking water, not dreaming, not wanting to live alive and just drifting into deadness. Ignoring your depression, C-PTSD, and other issues is a mistake that will lead you to feeling worse. Avoiding righteous, justifiable feelings is a mistake that can result in addictions and even suicide.

9. Where can I find Narcissistic Abuse Recovery support groups?

Ask at a local church. Search meetup groups in your area. Organize your own if you know people who had similarly traumatic experiences and want to heal. Attend conferences to help you understand what happened to you and how to cope, as well as heal best. Reach out on social media where you can find many support groups.

10. How long does it take to recover from Narcissistic Abuse?


Narcissistic Abuse Recovery is a process, not an event. It takes time, depending on your conditions. Give yourself the gift of time and do whatever is required so that you can heal and move on in life.

Narcissistic Abuse Recovery Resources

Recovering from Narcissistic Abuse took a lot of work on my part. Many resources helped me, but prayer was the foundation of everything, and meditation was the second most valuable resource.

I would like to share some of my resources with you.

Narcissistic Abuse Recovery Prayers

Lord, I need you!  #PoemsFromGod
Lord, I need you every hour, every moment of every day.
I need your guidance, your mercy, hold on to me tight.
I need you to never let go of me as I pray.
I need you to lead me, to renew me, to help me stay humble and kind. 

Every morning I start with my list of gratitude, God.
Every day I realize my weakness and your strength in it.
Every moment I reach out to you because I never forgot,
That I need you... Without you I've already reached my limit. 

7/23/17 © Anna Szabo, JD, MBA

"I Need Your Love, God" #PoemsFromGod
I'm hurt and overwhelmed, God.
I feel weak and I need your strength.
I need your help with the very basics of life.
I can't do anything on my own anymore.

I love you more than I love anyone else. 
I want to honor you more than I want anything.
I ask for peace that passes all understanding.
I need your love to comfort me with affection. 

8/2/17 © Anna Szabo, JD, MBA

"Prayer for Prosperity" #PoemsFromGod

Dear God,

I thank you for meeting my every need.
Life is tough and weary at this time,
But I haven't gone without, indeed,
And I've learned to live abundantly on just a dime.

God, I've prayed to you for purpose and peace,
But today I'm praying for opportunity and prosperity.
As I'm standing here crying on my knees,
About how to make ends meet I have no clarity.

God, I know your plan for me is to prosper.
I've lost everything and I wonder how to survive.
I'm so devastated in this financial disaster,
But my hope is in you, and you want me to thrive.

God, please help me and show me the way.
What is my next step to be able to make a good living? 
I'm not ashamed about money to pray.
In your promise of my prosperity I am believing. 

11/7/17 © Anna Szabo, JD, MBA

"I'm Surrendered to Thee" #PoemsFromGod

I am fearfully and wonderfully made
By God Almighty, the Great I Am.
Old things all past away at once,
And I am a new creation in Christ.

I die in my flesh and walk in the Spirit,
I choose kindness and humbleness.
The harder the journey, the more I grow from it.
You offer to me no condemnation 

And you provide an escape
From every temptation.
I choose to lose so I can win,
I'm prudent, not simple, following your written will.

I go through trials and learn my lessons daily but often stumble.
I know you prune me to be more fruitful, but my life I often shamble.
Please lift this heavy burden off of me,
You say your yoke is easy. I'm surrendered to Thee. 

3/10/17 © Anna Szabo, JD, MBA

"Prayer for Relief from the Past" #PoemsFromGod

Dear God,

I’m held by past pain hostage.
Release me from the bondage!

I’m suffering. I’m tortured 
But you my soul have nurtured.

So I believe you’re gracious.
My faith makes me vivacious.

With hope I face my trouble.
For you, I know, I struggle.

You’re pruning me and growing.
Your plan to me you’re showing

Of which my past is portion.
Prevent, God, its distortion!

My past is not my present.
Yes, surely it’s unpleasant

But magnifying heartache,
My past my present I make.

It’s time for moving forward!
My course of life is onward!

Your grace is liberating.
No longer I am waiting!

I’m free, relieved, unburdened!
To serve you I’m determined!

I thank you for my healing.
Redeemed and free I'm feeling.  

6/6/19 © Anna Szabo, JD, MBA

"Prayer for Organized Thinking and Personal Initiative" #PoemsFromGod

God, I’m praying for independent thinking, self-discipline, and productivity. 
My days are filled with busyness, but my future depends on meaningful activity.

Sometimes I confuse busyness for business and I drift quickly nowhere.
I reflect back on my life and, instead of being fulfilling, it feels like a nightmare.

There are so many distractions but I’m ready to do exactly what I need to do.
I’m regretting time wasted in procrastination but my past I can't undo.

From here where I am, God, lead me right now to where I need to go.
Take me to where I will make a difference and help people I don’t even yet know.

Guide me, show me the way, help me be productive and stay organized.
Help me maintain spiritual clarity, physical strength, mental focus, and feel energized. 

I want to serve you with my life but distracted and confused I’ve been.
Change me now. Use me, God! In Jesus’ name I pray. Amen. 

6/6/19 © Anna Szabo, JD, MBA

Narcissistic Abuse Recovery Meditations 

Narcissistic Abuse Recovery Videos

Healing after Narcissistic Abuse: a Proven 3-Step Plan

How To Recover From Narcissistic Abuse

  1. Make up your mind and commit to recovering from abuse


    Decide! Decide to recover from Narcissistic Abuse! Your decision is the first step. Your unshakable commitment is the next step.

    Depending on whether you are the daughter of a Narcissistic Mother or you experienced Narcissistic Relationship Abuse from your significant other, choose one of the two step-by-step plans below.

    >> How to Deal with a Narcissistic Mother: Your 12 Step Plan

    1. Step out of denial into acceptance of reality about your mother.

    2. Allow the child in you to make peace with the painful truth.

    3. Understand that you’re filled with anxiety about life, people, decision-making, and future because she persuaded you over the years that you don’t have the right to live and are worthless.

    4. Realize that you can’t depend on your mother whom you idealized and idolized.

    5. Recognize that there will never be enough sacrifice for your mother, her demands never end, she always criticizes you and wants to own and dominate you.

    6. Comprehend what she’s doing to you and the harm you endured.

    7. Build a plan to recover and heal so you can stand firm on your own two feet and be emotionally independent of this toxic relationship.

    8. Establish boundaries, though you fear your mother. 

    9. Make yourself uninteresting and boring, she hates boring, so don’t tell anything exciting or important to her. 

    10. Focus on you, build trustworthy relationships with emotionally-healthy people who care about you. 

    11. Practice self-care, read, write, cook, create art, swim, hike, dance, take fitness or public speaking classes, journal, protect yourself, heal. 

    12. Forgive your mother to set yourself free from the bondage with her so you can heal and build a joyful life by embracing God’s word. 


    >> How to Deal with the Narcissist: a Proven 15-Step Plan

    1. Remove yourself from the Narcissist Physically

    2. Go No-Contact to Protect Yourself Mentally

    3. Commit to Narcissistic Abuse Therapy

    4. Deal with Your Depression Immediately

    5. Get Help for Your Anxiety, Panic Attacks, and PTSD

    6. Understand Your True Identity and Get Grounded

    7. Discover and Write Out Your Purpose for Living

    8. Create a Self-Care Plan and Practice Good Habits

    9. Protect Your Mind from Mental Garbage

    10. Journal about Your Journey

    11. Trust God’s Plan and Surrender Your Pain

    12. Stand Firmly on God’s 3573 Promises

    13. Practice Gratitude

    14. Pray for the Narcissist’s Deliverance and Salvation

    15. Forgive the Narcissist to Set Yourself Free from His Bondage

    Don’t worry what the Narcissist says about who you are. Find out who Jesus says you are! Download my FREE BOOK OF DEVOTIONALS #52Devotionals.


    Women Empowerment - Anna Szabo of Online Discipleship for Women

  2. Create a list of what needs to be fixed in your life after abuse


    Figure out what you want. You hate your life now, I get it. What kind of life would satisfy you? Where do you live in your dreams? How do you live when you envision a better future?

    Here’s how to figure out what you really want.

    Mental health – what needs to be done to help you with depression, suicidal ideation, C-PTSD, insomnia, eating issues, and anxiety attacks?

    Physical health – do you need to lose or gain weight in order to improve your wellbeing? Do you need to learn how to work out at home, sleep better, spend time outside, and eat healthily? Do you need to change your habits?

    Spiritual health – what resources can help you become faith-minded and Gospel-focused? Where can enjoy encouraging messages to feed your spirit with faith and hope? Have you tried Christian podcasts for women?

    Emotional health – how can you best process all your feelings? Have you leveraged the list of feelings to label your emotions and face them one-by-one productively through journaling and just being in their presence? Do you need to learn how to be fully human by experiencing any and all of the emotions God created?

    Financial health – do you need to get a job, save money, pay off debt, start a business, or all of the above?

    Relational health – where can you connect with good people in meaningful ways?


    How To Deal With Rejection - Anna Szabo

  3. Do what it takes for as long as it takes to recover from abuse


    Healing after Narcissistic Abuse is a process, not an event. It takes time, energy, effort, patience, commitment, and consistency.

    Getting your mental health, physical wellbeing, and financial situation in order doesn’t happen overnight.

    Narcissistic Abuse recovery depends on your self-care habits.

    >> How To Practice Self-Care

    Meditate
    Journal
    Write poetry
    Hike
    Read
    Spend quiet time with God
    Pray

    Do whatever it takes to recover from trauma, survive, and thrive.

    Anna Szabo of Online Discipleship for Women is doing 100 squats challenge at The Lodge of The Chattahoochee

Summary

Healing after Narcissistic Abuse is a process and requires time, commitment, energy, effort, intentionality, and consistency.

This resource provides you with the exact steps to take to heal after Narcissistic Abuse: to get away from the Narcissist, to understand what happened to you, to discover who you actually are, to realize what kind of life you want, to set goals, and to establish self-care habits that will help propel you toward what you want.

If this content helped you, consider expressing gratitude:

Your life is important. You are valuable.

Your future matters. God created you for His divine purpose.

You are a child of God. You are precious, special, and chosen.

You are light in God’s kingdom. He prepared good works in advance for you to do. You matter. Your dreams matter. Your mental health matters. Your freedom to pursue God’s calling on your life matters.

Don’t allow anyone to abuse you. Lean on Jesus and count on Him.

Read Who Is Jesus to understand how Christ can help you. Practice faith and fortitude.

Read What Is Faith to discover how to grow and expand your faith on this tough journey of surviving domestic abuse.

I was able to survive and thrive after abuse. And so can you. All things are truly possible with Christ.

If you found this content valuable, share it with a woman who needs it right now.

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