“I transformed our bad marriage . . .
even after the professionals said I had no choice but to leave or change the locks”
Our work defines narcissism and codependence as the leading roles in marriage dysfunction, but this is not about pointing the finger and saying everything wrong in your marriage is someone else’s fault.
The solution I discovered to creating a great marriage was NOT blaming everything on my husband Steve’s narcissism . . .
Don’t Read Another Word About Narcissists Until You Read This!
I have seen online forums where people are sometimes bullied into believing how evil their partner is (and how wrong they are to still love them) and how different their partner thinks to normal people. I have seen people become so scared and disconnected from reality, that they nearly forget their own name!
- Do narcissists hate women?
- Can a narcissist truly feel love for his children?
- Does a narcissist ever forget an insult?
- Are narcissists cruel to their pets?
The internet is teaming with these kind of questions – but I want to warn you that this kind of thinking can lead to a very dangerous trap.
On TV when we see conflict or crime, ‘hey presto’ some hero policeman, detective or doctor shows up to profile the disordered person’s thinking and figures out an ingenious solution – which usually means the bad guy goes to jail (and often the victim finds a new love).
Real life, however, is different. Trying to get into a disordered persons head (to manipulate them) may lead to you becoming crazy yourself.
I visited those kind of forums when I needed help with my marriage and these same kind of people nearly scared me out of my wits. Luckily I had a friend who said “Sure you are both unhappy Kim and I know Steve is really hurting you – but you two love each other. He ‘s not a monster. Kim you are talking about Steve!”
That broke the spell and I was lucky to have such a smart friend. It caused me to rethink things and realize that trying to work out how Steve was thinking wasn’t the answer – I had to get as strong and healthy as I could and I had to start getting us help!
Because if you are trying to manipulate a manipulator what does that make you?
The only way to help a disordered person is to learn solid and healthy relationship skills yourself.
Think back to your teachers at school. I bet there were some who could handle just about any class and still get them interested and wanting to learn. I bet those teachers brought the best out in their students and had a positive impact on their lives.
And maybe you remember other kinds of teachers too? The ones who were emotional and reactive and brought out the worst in their class?
This is the new way I decided to look at my marriage. Instead of letting the labels psychologists had placed on Steve daunt me, instead I decided to take a different approach. I had spent years studying psychology and finally decided those ideas were not going to work.
I decided if I wanted something better, I had to work on bettering myself. Instead of complaining and expecting Steve to fix things I had to work on my own leadership skills and become a better manager in my home.
Hard work? Yes, certainly, but this approach had the added bonus of improving all of the relationships in my life.
10 years on and our work has had global impact on how Narcissistic Personality Disorder is treated and changed it’s status away from incurable in the latest DSM.
Is dealing with a narcissistic person easy? No. But this is not little league territory, just look at how many marriages fail. No one gets married expecting to get divorced – but look at how many couples do.
Narcissism and Codependence are very useful terms that help describe the tow most common emotional patterns that are likely to cause a marriage to fail. But if you are looking to shift all responsibility and blame on someone else, our program is probably not right for you.