Fear and Guilt Will Keep You in an Abusive Relationship If You Let Them

Such an incredibly important article for those of us who grew up in emotionally abusive households, and especially for Adult Children of a Narcissist (ACoN).

Taking breathing time for yourself, just to feel who you actually ARE and not live in the prison of the Narcissist’s defined role they’ve assigned you, can give you a taste of the freedom you’ve lacked, perhaps all of your life.  Then you’re going to have to face the incredibly tough question, “Now what am I going to do?”


This is where your therapist comes in.  Having the right therapist is vital, because you are going to literally be reborn when you cut the cord that binds you to your abuser.  Make sure your support system is in place, and prepare yourself for the possibility that until you begin rebuilding your life, your only support might be your therapist–because the Narcissist will make sure all your family and friends think you are a lowlife creep who abandoned them.  And since a Narcissist thrives on praise and adulation, they often occupy positions of high responsibility in their communities, are always the first to jump to the aid of extended family members in need, and are generally idolized by all.  Their position of power makes it easy to demonize anyone who defies their dominance.  This is what keeps so many of us locked up in the prison of great, the fear of the consequences of being ourselves.


But in order to actualize ourselves, break away we must.  This article, and the resources it quotes, will help you get started on your journey to your genuine self.

The article comes from the incredibly helpful website, The Invisible Scar, which is directed toward adult children of emotionally abusive parents.


Fear and Guilt Will Keep You in an Abusive Relationship If You Let Them.

Leave a comment


  1. Veronica Jarski | The Invisible Scar

     /  August 11, 2015

    Thanks, Laura, for your encouragement and sharing the blog post.

    Peace to you!

  2. I’ve never heard anyone address the issue and the importance of having life-support when exiting abusive relationships. Thanks for the insight.

  3. Too true

  4. Blessings to you, Laura, and to all survivors.

  5. This is a timely post. I don’t say this kind of thing often but I was so depressed by my recent encounters with the two most recent replications of my relationship with my Mother that I wanted to off myself. I would never do such a thing to my partner, but I am soooooo sick of having to defend myself from the narcissistic swine that I always invite into my life.

    They take and take and then when you are bone dry they go for the bones.

    • Yeah…That’s the nature of the Narc. Spiritual vampirism. Suck you dry, then curse you for being no good to them anymore, and kick you to the curb. But how, How, HOW to see them coming????

      • I know. I must be going through something because I find myself grieving the loss of the time and treasure I’ve given to people who don’t know how to love and never will.

        • I definitely am on the grieving page with you. Have been, keep on being…the question is, now that we know we’ve been HAD, what can we learn from this? I’m looking at my mother, trying to figure out if there’s anything positive I can take away from this and use for the good. Jury is still out on that one…

          • The thing that galls me is that mine died years ago — I secretly–(well not so secretly anymore) think that she possesses these women and brings them to me. Or maybe she’s just lazy and possesses women who are nearby. 🙂

            • I read somewhere that abusive parents can continue to control you even from the grave….I am working on prevention while mine is still alive…She won’t have a grave because she insists on being cremated, but I will joyfully bury her ashes and drink a toast to my freedom to be my very own self….working even now, especially now, on differentiation, being able to speak with her and know that she is one very sick person, and I am no longer her slave…takes a while LOL

              • Yep…a child’s brain is delicate and easy to condition. Children and the very elderly are among the most helpless people in our world.

                • Yes, I watched my mother brutalize my father when he grew old and sick and dependent upon her. I tried to buffer the abuse, but she did it even in front of me, and worse when I wasn’t there. I was so glad when he finally went into a nursing home–but she took him home, until he was finally so injured that he had to stay there. No one in Adult Services would believe me, because “she is such an angel.”

                  • I figured out what the aftermath is like; this business of replicating the relationships with these rotten parents.

                    It’s like stubbing your toe on the same rock every day because you forget that the rock is there and that it hurts like Hell when you hit it with your toe.

                    I watched my Father go from being a firefighter to a broken man in less than ten years. He had a stroke at the age of 48. The first night after he went into the hospital my Mother brought a guy home.

                    • Jesis. That’s just….beyond words. I’m sorry you had to go through life like that…you don’t deserve that, your father didn’t deserve it…you’re a good man, Rob, I wish things had been better for you.

                    • I wish that for you as well…however, I suspect that much of what is good about both of us is also the result of the terrible Mother’s we had.

                    • Hmmm. I don’t know about that. Maybe, in the sense that after a long time of not knowing any better and emulating her, I got into therapy and discovered that I have choices about how to behave, how to express love, how to communicate that I’m not happy with someone else’s behavior…It took a long time for me to shed the role model of personality disorder that she gave me. What, you mean I don’t have to have a temper tantrum if something upsets me??? I can actually say, What you are doing really makes me uncomfortable, pisses me off, but I still love you and I want to have a meaningful conversation about this? I guess I learned from my mother what I DON’T want to be like, who I DON’T want to be. How about you? What positive things have you taken away from the experience of being your mother’s son?

                    • I don’t mean positive things from my Mother…I wasn’t clear.

                      I mean that for some reason my response to my Mother’s brutality was to develop a sense of right and wrong that may be a little too fine…

                      But this moral code; that I will not, to the best of my ability, treat other people badly regardless of what they do. This doesn’t mean I don’t lose my temper; I’m human…but I’m not cruel, and I’m surprisingly free of the narcissism that was so pervasive in my Mother. This doesn’t mean I don’t have the usual dose of it, but it’s not the defining characteristic of my personality. There are traits that I have that reflect the damage…but given everything that I’ve survived, I’m a hopeful person who enjoys being alive and who genuinely likes other people.

                    • I’m trying to figure out how to tell you how much I admire you without sounding hokey. O.K., I’m hokey. I am just fucking in awe of you. There.

                    • Let’s do the hokey pokey (that didn’t come out right) what I mean is, I’m in awe of you too…:)

                    • LOL. You put your right foot in, you put your right foot out…That’s what it’s all about (yeh!)

                    • Guess what? I’ve got a troll on my blog! I must be doing something right 😀 Only problem is, my fingers are itching to reply to her ANNOYING comments, but I know that will only lead to more aggravation. Have you dealt with this before? What should I do with her? I’ve already told her to leave, but nooooo….

                    • I seem to come down with trolls every other week. The worst thing you can do to some people is openly enjoy your mind and the minds of others. There’s is a type on the internets that seem to explode with envy at the sight of it — so naturally they have to pop into whatever it is you’re doing and see if you’ll let them take a dump on your space.

                      My trolls always use the email bomb and the ever handy accusation that am stealing the public art that I photograph regardless of the obvious fact that it’s well known public art and only an idiot would try to steal it.

                      This tells me that my trolls aren’t too bright because 90 percent of a trolls accusations are projection.

                      This time the troll made a comment on my Flickr stream so I created a page on word press as a reference for my graffiti art pictures and give them away because they are paintings made
                      for free by people who do this kind of art out of love…


                      It’s hard to feel sorry for people who feel entitled to invade someone’s peace of mind with petty bullshit…but it’s the price of using the internet for more than running stats.

                    • Thank you for this…I’m feeling pretty low because my dog is getting ready to die on me and then this asshole gives me this whole load of shit about how compassionate she is, while she’s flaming me! I saw your amazing street art page, and I really love what you do. Your compositions and color are just “outta sight” as my dear artist daddy would have said. He would have loved your work.

                    • That graffiti page is the result of a Flickr troll who decided to use my post of the Drummer to accuse me of stealing public art….like I would be stupid enough to try to claim well known San Francisco public art as my own.

                      The problem is that many people don’t know that you don’t really have to credit graffiti and public mural art, tho it’s the right thing to do. Any public art is also public domain. But all it takes is a determined envious troll with email to damage a good reputation. So I made the page because I thought, I can get all huffy and tell him to get fucked and and advise him to learn to live with his mediocrity or I can put up a page and make the art available for free; which is also the right thing to do.

                      So I thanked him for doing me a favor and posted a link to the page. The next day his comment was gone…but that doesn’t mean he isn’t plotting some new strategy. He should apply his creative energy to his own work and life…the truly sad thing about it is that he’s capable of making good work…but he wants to be the reigning Queen of Flickr, which he can have.

                      I have noticed that small stakes seem to breed the fiercest competition.

                      On another note I am really sad that your dog is dying. It’s so unfair. You bought her in good faith and the woman set you up. I wonder if she can be sued for causing psychological damage…It just seems that people like her should feel some pain.

                    • That stupid troll of yours is jealous, is what. People who choose to spend precious time trying to diss people who are doing stuff for real, are just trying to make themselves feel better about their own sorry selves. Interesting, I’m writing this with the Swype keyboard on my galaxy phone and “selves” came out “darkness.” Hmmm. Sometimes I think these things are prophetic, but that’s probably my psychosis speaking 😀

                      Yes. I spent all day at the goddam veterinary hospital today, $800 and that’s on top of the $200+ I dropped last week. The next thing is a biopsy, which involves abdominal surgery plus extensive testing of the biopsy specimen, going to cost me thousands. Plus the toxicology consult, to prove it wasn’t caused by merely sniffing some arnica. This bitch simply does not understand that she is going head to head with someone who was the expert witness for Monroe County, NY prosecutor’s office, in charge of evidentiary exams and evidence handling in cases of child sexual abuse. I have testified in court hundreds of times. I have never lost a case, and I won’t lose this one either, because this c*nt can’t find her ass with both hands, a map, and a flashlight, as my dear old daddy used to say. And if she’s reading this, she should consider the magnitude of the lawsuit she faces, and send me a large enough cashier’s check to pay for all expenses, tripled for emotional damages. Pardon my French, Rob, I know you’ve got virgin ears :-p

                    • I have a virgin cell in one of my ears…you’re welcome to it…:)

                      That’s the spirit! Make her eat it…make her eat it raw. 🙂

                      Thank God I was a member of Second Life before I joined other social networks–it’s a boot camp for learning how to ignore trolls.

                    • I just decided to embrace my troll’s words. She’s a genius! She will be offered up on center stage! Coming to a blog near you 😀

                    • LOL…oh I need to see this…

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