The secret to empowerment is simple, although not easy. But with time, practice, and especially, reinforcement, it becomes easier.
Abuse victims and toxic relationship survivors are used to doing all the suffering while their tormentors seem to get off scott free. But with time and dedicated rehearsing, survivors can cultivate empowering habits. And when they remember the all-important task of self-reinforcing their efforts, the quest for empowered living gets a bit easier.
Folks in relationships with disturbed characters worry about their future. And they lament many things in the past. But personal empowerment lies in making choices and taking action in the present moment.
Self-blame in the aftermath of a toxic relationship is common. Victims blame themselves for not realizing things sooner and for tolerating things too long.
Under the gaslight, you stop trusting your gut. But once the mask comes off your manipulator you realize your gut was right all along and you’re free to start trusting yourself and your instincts once again.
I was recently interviewed by Anne Nelson of Fully Thriving for the upcoming Marriage Mastery Summit. My segment goes live on the site March 19, 2020.
Adult children of gaslighters often have an impaired sense of self. Accordingly, such folks tend to be the covert narcissist’s favorite prey.
Covert narcissists gaslight their children in many ways. And this does great psychological damage, often leading to a lifetime of self-doubt.
It devastates a child’s self-image to feel demeaned, belittled, or degraded. But sadly, as an adult, a child with poor self-worth can unwittingly repeat the same compensatory pattern of trying to prove their worth by comparing themselves to and discounting others.
Adult children of narcissistic parents can spend years overcoming the effects of childhood gaslighting. And they can unwittingly repeat harmful patterns.