The Narcissist Dance

devil hell

The Narcissist Dance, a combination of a two step, jive, twist, jerk, rock and roll and a tango and no matter how fast you dance you will never figure out how to follow him or know what step he wants you to take next.

We dance with everyone in our life, our parents, our children, our lovers. By dance, I don’t mean in the literal sense, I mean figuratively. We establish a certain way of dealing with each other, a dance, sort of speak. They say this, we do that, we do that they do this, ……. we each end up knowing each other’s triggers, sensitive spots, what interests them and what will make them angry. Have you ever noticed that you can act totally different with different people? For example, my dad hated noise so when he was home everyone was very subdued whereas with my mom everything was louder and more fun. I knew when my dad was grumpy to steer clear of him. Or you are more relaxed with one friend than the other, or you avoid a topic with one friend because you know it will set her off.

Certain people just bring out the worst in us too, no matter how hard we try, some people just annoy us. And there are those couples you see once in a while on a dance floor who know each other so well they glide around the dance floor, he can lead her with a slight pressure of his hand, but she knows his every move and they dance effortlessly. Or the couple who finish each other’s sentences or she knows he will forget his glasses so she puts them in her purse. There is comfort in routine, in knowing what comes next and us human’s like routine and knowing what is coming. Most people hate surprises and they will stay with someone, not because they are happy; but because at least they know what is coming. They have established a dance with that person and they don’t want to learn a new dance, it is easier to just dance with the one you know.. You’ve surely heard the saying, “Staying with the devil you know.” who ever came up with that saying must have been involved with a narcissist.

The problem with the narcissist, he taught you how to do one dance and just when you were in sync with him in the waltz of love he started doing the jive, and then he starts to do the polka, then back to a waltz and you can’t dance fast enough to keep up with him. Just when you think you have him figured out he will change the steps again. There is no winning, no figuring him out, no avoiding conflict.

BUT, there is a certain amount of predictability to his unpredictability. You know that once you break up he will find a way to contact you or if you call saying you need his help, (whatever the two of you have established as your dance) you will end up having sex and being “back together”. With James and I, my truck would break down or he would injure himself and I would have to care for him. After ten years it had become “just the way we were”, yeah I was sick of it, yeah I told him this time is it, no more breaking up and getting back together, if we don’t know we want to be together by now we need to just walk away from it. He agreed and we went right back to the “way we were”. I put up with it for 2 years and then finally left, determined to not go back this time. But there was this little glimmer of hope inside me that was expecting him to injure himself or my truck would break down and I would call and he would rescue me and we would do the dance all over again. Only this time he didn’t come running when my truck broke down, he had found someone else and he didn’t give a shit about me any more. All of a sudden I didn’t know any of the steps to the dance he was doing. In fact he left me standing all alone on the dance floor while he did the hokey pokey with someone else.

I didn’t want him back, I knew he was a pathological liar and a narcissist, I knew he was not good for me and he would probably end up killing me but in one fell swoop he ripped the rug out from under me. He left me!!! after all I had put up with, after all the times I had forgiven him and taken him back against my better judgement and the judgement of others, because he had been so insistent that he had changed and loved me and now he was dumping ME? without a backwards glance?? and it didn’t matter how much I pleaded, or said I loved him, he could just walk away and not only that he was blaming me, calling me a psycho and saying he never loved me, I made his life hell for 10 years!! If life was such hell why did he beg me back so many times in that 10 years?  NOW, all of a sudden he saw the relationship as toxic and he wanted out??

Well, if that isn’t changing the tune he was dancing to I don’t know what is!! and now I was supposed to be happy for him that he had found true love and preferably melt into a puddle of shame in a corner somewhere and not ruin the good thing he had going.

I think a lot of the hurt we feel and the reason we have such a hard time with no contact is we got used to things being a certain way, as dysfunctional as things were, it was the way “we were”, we were so in tune to his wants, needs and desires, so intent on following his lead, we forgot how to dance with anyone else. We had a false sense of security thinking no other woman would put up with him the way we did, he may be an asshole but he was our asshole and we always had the hope he would go back to the guy we first fell in love with.

The thing is; even if by some miracle he changed, the relationship between you and him never would. There is too much water under the bridge, too many lies, too much hurt to repair it now. You could never trust him, or he would have to work damn hard to earn your trust back.

Victims have a hard time accepting reality, no matter how much it hurts, it is done, let it go. Have you ever tried to lead a man when you are dancing? It never works very well. I had a guy tell me once that dancing was an indication of how well two people related with each other. I don’t know if that is true, I couldn’t follow him to save my life and I kept trying to lead. We didn’t last long, but he thanked me for making him aware of how much he loved his ex. Oh yeah I had a good cry over that but I got over it by the next weekend. And then you have my ex husband who was an excellent dancer and could dance with any women, but then come to think of it he screwed any woman too. So maybe there is something to that theory, James hated to dance and for someone who played guitar, had a horrible beat. And again the theory maybe right, he hated to dance, he refused to dance, much like he refused to participate in a relationship and when he did try he was off beat. Hmmmm.

dance with devil

I don’t have a clue how this couple gets along, (they are a couple) but you have to admit they are beautiful to watch and they have to be in tune with each other to do it. A relationship with a narcissist is much like this couple dancing. He takes you to great heights, you have never felt more sexual, never trusted any man like you trust him, you believe in him and that he will always be there to catch you. Only difference is when a narcissist throws you up in the high he spots another woman in the audience and walks off stage and instead of being caught, you land face first and he blames you because you took too long to come back down or whatever.

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17 Replies to “The Narcissist Dance”

    1. Celia, good way of referring to it. I used to do exactly what he had told me he wanted and the next day he would be all pissed off about it. It was so damn frustrating! and he would deny ever saying that is what he said. I wished so often that I could tape our conversations so I could play them back. I started to journal for that reason, so at least I knew I wasn’t crazy.

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      1. Carrie thank u from the bottom of my heart ur words touch me n heal me so very much. Its so much O can relate to and so clearly put all I can do is cry realizing that my doubts my hopes my fantasy wasnt reality… I am dealing with a sick person n I have to remember that, time n time again he shows his true face n bcus of my addiction to the dance I know I consider what if he isnt when I know he is! Its a lot goin on n Im just thankful for this blog… Keep me in ir prayers

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  1. Carrie, excellent post. All so true. Again! Why don’t you write a book or put all your posts together in one? Try to go on television. Make the world aware of all the problems we have and had with a narcissist. Elisabeth

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    1. Elisabeth, thank you for your vote of confidence. I am attempting to pull a book together from the posts but it does take time and even though it might appear that most of the work is done, it is much more than just taking the posts as they are and putting them in a book, I have to go through them all and edit etc. I forget but I know I have well over 700 posts.
      I wouldn’t have a clue about how to get on TV, don’t they find you?

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      1. Carrie, you’re so much more talented than I am. You express yourself so well. It is a pity only the survivors read your blog. At least, I think so. Narcissistic abuse should be more known to others. I only had the emotional abuse, so I cannot do a thing about it. Only stay No Contact. Eliabeth

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  2. 12 months now from ‘him’ great job, new fantastic home where I want to live on the beach and a few men I have dated. I am better than ever before. It’s really hard to disentangle yourself from the web of what I believe is deliberate mind control. It’s worth it, believe me, because what they see in you they want to keep for themselves and they are so insecure about who they are the only way they know how to do it is to make you absolutely dependent on them and break you down. Once they do this they don’t want you anymore because they wanted who you were in the first place but couldn’t handle it. They are really disordered. I know many women will always at some point in their lives go through the trauma I went through. We are all at our own stage in this. I will always belong to a group though. a group that understands each other and nods their heads in an absolute soul level understanding that others would perhaps be confused by. Just want to let women know who read this. It’s hard, it’s emotionally gut wrenching to get away and stay away but in my experience just 12 months after I did this life is quite splendid. The best thing is I so appreciate it.

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    1. Jo, you are welcome. When I first started the blog I used to hesitate to talk about some things because I thought no one would believe me, it was just too bizarre but every time I did I had so many people say, “My God that happened with me” or “My ex does that too!” It is uncanny how much alike they are.

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  3. I love your posts Carrie, and feel like I relate to almost every word. This reminds me of my unpredictable former narc and wild emotional roller coaster. I think that they keep changing the dance to maintain control. Obviously if you can never know what’s coming next (i.e. they suddenly start doing the jive when you thought you were doing the waltz), it’s much harder for you to defend yourself against their tactics.

    Thank you for reminding me why I left my narc. I want to give hope to others out there that life after a narcissist is better than anything you can imagine. Months after leaving my narc, I began to feel more like myself again. Then, when I was ready for it, I even found love again (with a better guy who actually deserves it–who makes me feel safe and treasured). This is why we must abandon our narcissists and move on. You’re better off sitting it out than dancing with a narcissist who’ll constantly kick you or step on your feet. Then, there can be room for another better partner to come along and give you a nicer dance. If not, that’s fine too–at least you’re not getting kicked or stepped on any longer, and you’re free to enjoy your surroundings in peace. I know, way to beat an analogy to death, haha–but this dancing metaphor is a great one and I had to go with it. Hang in there everyone, there is something better in store for all of you (but only after letting the narcissist go first)

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  4. hey Carrie!
    6 months ago as i have told you before my ex left me for his co worker and i slept with him while they were together and then he acted like it never happened like i was crazy and she called me a downgrade and all of that. Anyway since then i blocked them from fb and my email i changed my number i gave my new number to very few close friends i cut off friends who kept telling me about him. I tried to get my life together i started working out and feeling better i planned a trip with my brother to visit our family for the summer. I reapplied for university since i took the semester off. I was going out having fun with my fiends i thought of him occasionally but it didnt hurt me as bad anymore. Three days ago he found my new number at first i thought no way it could eb him how could he find my number i had been so careful with who i gave it to. he said he was thinking of me and i thought okay so i blocked him. i panicked a little but i thought okay i blocked him out of sight out of mind. but it bothered me all night around 4 am i heard a know on my door and it was him and that when i did the stupidest thing again i have read a lot of posts here as you know and yet when he was in front of me i didnt do any of the things i learned. i didnt open the door he stood there for about 40 minutes calling out to me and i failed i felt him in why because i apparently have not learned my lesson. i asked what he wanted and he said i just wanted to see youand i sad why and he said i just did. he said something about how i didnt love him enough how his family didnt like me but that his friend told him he was going to marry me not his family and that as long as he loved me he should be happy.and i said okay happy you realize that now. as we kept talking he kissed me and i fell for it like i always do and ended up sleeping with him. afterwards we cuddled and then started fighting and i sat up and i said trust me i am not going to tell your gf that you cheated once again since last time you denied it and she didnt believe me and he said there no point of me changing my # because he knows people and will always find it. he kissed me and i said this isn’t fair not that you care but it isn’t fair you cant come and disrupt my life and then just walk away and pretend it didn’t happen. i was so mad i was doing so great i was starting to be happy again and i fell for him again. he said don’t worry this will be the last time you see me and i said you said that last time and here you are at least before our breakup was recent but now its been 6 months and i just don’t get why i keep falling for him why if i know i can never be with him again why i cant say no when he’s in front of me.

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