Multitudes of people who’ve implemented No Contact with the narcissist in their lives will inevitably ask the question, do narcissists care if you move on?
Why? Because they are often consumed with missing the narcissist, and they wonder if he or she has the same feelings of loss and sorrow…perhaps wondering if there’s a chance to rekindle the relationship.
Here’s the deal. When we wonder if (or assume that) the narcissist misses us, we are projecting our feelings of loss and longing onto them. Narcissists do not think the way we do, nor experience the same emotions. They do not form healthy bonds with other people, so the usual emotions of missing someone or feelings of sadness and regret typically don’t affect them.
But they must feel something, right?
Yes, they do, but it doesn’t even closely resemble what you may be hoping for.
What Does No Contact Do to a Narcissist?
Below are the most common stages (emotional and physical) a narcissist goes through when one has implemented No Contact (**These are not listed in order of rank. These stages are for reference and can manifest in any order, depending on the individual).
When you’ve implemented No Contact with a narcissist, the first emotion they feel is anger at your attempt to set a boundary. They’ve grown so accustomed to having you under their control that they become indignant when you choose to have an independent thought and act on it.
During the relationship, you became an extension of them, so when you begin to break away and reclaim your conscious thought process they typically go into a rage, although this isn’t always obvious. Oftentimes, they’ll conceal the rage in order to fulfill their devastating revenge agendas.
2) Silent Treatment
In the narcissist’s mind, you are still their property and they believe it’s just a matter of time before you come to your senses. Therefore, a common tactic is for them to execute the Silent Treatment.
This might seem counterintuitive at first, but the truth is that many people do not implement No Contact in its true form, and often leave their phone, email, and social networks open in case the narcissist tries to contact them.
Then, when the victim doesn’t receive any form of contact from the narcissist, they begin to think the break-up may possibly have been their fault, after all.
In an ironic twist of events, the victim who implemented No Contact then feels rejected by the narcissist…and often will contact the narcissist with a text or Facebook message. Oddly, the Silent Treatment from the narcissist then results in the victim asking their abuser to come back to them.
Hoovering presents in many forms. Mostly, it’s the narcissist sending little texts, showing up at your door with flowers, coming to you because they’ve had a “life-changing” epiphany where, through some kind of divine intervention, they’ve been shown the pain and sorrow they put you through and promise to change.
Allow me to break it down for you using a typical hoovering attempt by a male narcissist:
Scenario: The narcissist sends you a text and shows up with flowers 20 minutes later. You crack the door and he tells you he loves you and doesn’t want anyone else. He manages to squeeze out a tear or two and admits that he hasn’t been perfect, but he is willing to try to change for the sake of the relationship.
Your internal dialogue: “He must really care about me. He’s finally seen the error of his ways, and he’s obviously sorry for the way he treated me all this time. Thank goodness. This is great! I forgive him and love him more than ever.” You open the door and throw your arms around him.
His internal dialogue: “Damn. Those flowers were friggin’ expensive. Why am I doing all this hard work? Oh yeah, finding new supply would cost more than the flowers, what with the dinner dates and such. I guess I’m getting off pretty cheaply here. I can’t believe she’s falling for this…again. But oh man, is she gonna pay for doing this No Contact thing.” He forces a smile and returns the hug, which doesn’t seem as genuine as yours.
4) The Torn Lover
The narcissist has already shacked up with a new lover, whom they say they just met, but in reality, has been seeing for the past few months behind your back. They tell you they were so lonely when you implemented No Contact, that they defenselessly fell into the arms of a new lover. But, they still somehow love you and want to make it work.
The scoop: What’s happened is the narcissist found out that the new lover doesn’t have as much money as they thought, can’t support them, or gave them a little lip when they tried to test the boundary-breaking waters.
Or, maybe they need to get in a good devalue and discard before leaving you in a heap of raw nerves on your living room floor.
Whenever a “new” lover enters the scene, don’t fall for the “torn between two lovers” act. You are being played and triangulated and should consider going full-out No Contact.
5) Jekyll and Hyde
If he’s really sociopathic, once you fall for the feigned remorse and let him in, he immediately drops the mask and makes you pay for implementing No Contact. This could be in the form of a verbal assault, or physical. If the latter happens, call the police at your first opportunity. There’s only more to come.
Do Narcissists Care if You Move On?
Here’s what the narcissist really misses…
- Someone to take complete care of them; the “special treatment”.
- Not being able to be themselves. They can’t do that with the new supply.
- Not having someone to take their frustrations out on.
- Having someone to mop off their stage, all while paying the bills.
- Having an adoring, compliant partner.
- Being “God”.
- Not having adult responsibilities.
As you can see, all the above have nothing to do with missing you, and everything to do with the narcissist. It’s all about their ego, entitlement, and having control. These are the only two things that make up the narcissist’s inner-self.
When you implement No Contact, it’s the ultimate form of narcissistic injury, and they will do whatever is necessary to gain back control, and then devalue and discard you. That’s why implementing No Contact in its true form is critical when detaching from a toxic, emotionally abusive partner. Remember those points of entry from #2? Don’t leave them open. You will only regret it in the end.
How To Get Started On The Stages of Healing After Narcissistic Abuse
If you know that rising out of fear and pain and into healing and happiness is something that you dearly want, I’m inviting you to take on this journey, with me beside you, just as myself and thousands of other Thrivers have.
I cover the applications and theories in all of these areas in my narcissistic abuse recovery program.
Develop effective ways to break free from narcissistic abuse and finally end the nightmare.
You can find out more details here.
This nurturing program includes a wonderful private community that assists and supports all people detaching and healing from narcissistic abuse, no matter who the narcissist is (such as a family member, spouse, partner, friend, etc.) and regardless of the circumstances involved.
I look forward to your questions and comments!