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Trouble letting go of narcissist

Community Member


i don’t know who to talk to about this as no one understands how I feel about my ex because it’s hard for people to understand trauma bonding if they haven’t ever experienced it before. I was with a narcissistic addict. He was my boyfriend when I was 14, then 10 years later we got together for just under 2 years. We have been broken up for 3 months now. He literally put me through hell mentally..how can I still feel love toward him?! I just don’t understand, when I think of him I have to remind myself of all the bad otherwise I’m obsessively thinking about him..I haven’t reached out because I know I can’t. We had a really bad cycle of breaking up and getting back together, he just always knew what to say to drag me back in. He is just always in my head no matter what I do. I just want to know how he is feeling with all of this, does he think of me how I think of him? Did he really love me the way he says he did.
Is there anyone else going through the same thing? I need someone who understands to talk to about it because I can’t talk to my friends because they hold it against me and I just don’t feel comfortable.

8 Replies 8

Community Member

Welcome to the forums GeorgieD

Trauma bonding seems to becoming better understood in the community. Many don’t yet get it but I do. It’s a variation on the old Stockholm syndrome, where you start to identify yourself in line with your “captor”. It’s part of nature’s way of keeping you safe. The problem is unlike a true hostage situation, it is a toxic position to drift into in relationships.

The fact you are able to understand and describe your situation articulately gives you a head start in escaping your “trauma bond”.

Have you tried counselling just for yourself? Forget couples counselling, I don’t believe that is useful for you now. Try and speak to your GP, explain your situation exactly as you described it in your post. See if you can access a Medicare supported psychologist with experience in trauma bonding.

Ultimately, the only way the bond can be broken is a clear NO CONTACT strategy. Because he sounds like the only boyfriend you’ve had, you have come to accept this relationship as maybe worth sticking out, the old “he may change” routine. He won’t. You need to end it, go no contact and start living a better life. All the evidence is in front of you ( friends, family and you all know something is very wrong).

Don't waste any more time.

Thanks Betternow 🙂

I have tried a few psychologists but none seem to really help.
he wasn’t my only boyfriend. You may have read it wrong and I definitely didn’t explain it well. He was my boyfriend when I was 14, only for a few months. Then 10 years later when I was 24 we got together for 2 years. I’m 26 now. That explains it a bit better. I think there’s a massive connection there because of the love there from all those years ago.
going no contact is the hardest thing ever but it’s been about 2 months now and I haven’t heard from him either which is hard

Thank you for the clarification Georgie. That’s a much clearer picture.

You should be proud of yourself. To make a clean break like you have done is very difficult, yet you did it. The no contact rule is not easy but necessary. Because you feel a deep connection, your emotions are pushing you to wonder how he is doing, has he found someone else already or is he missing me? This is very normal but as time goes by these feelings will lessen.

I know some people write a one page list of all the reasons they left their partner e.g. unreliable, abusive when drunk, short tempered, impatient, poor listener etc and they read that page every morning before they leave the house. I’ve heard it helps during the no contact phase.

Good luck.

Community Champion
Community Champion

Hello GeorgieD,

I can understand you loving some with a narcissist addict.

I lived 38 years with my hubby who was a cruel, abusive narcissistic person...At first he was loving and kind, then things changed after we married....He could be very abusive, then turn around and be very nice..I should have left him not long after we married but I was so scared to and had nowhere to go...I had our two sons as well to care for..I did the wrong thing staying with him..my sons who have families of there own are also struggling with their fathers narcissistic ways...

I stayed with him until he passed away 6.5 years ago...Even though he’s been gone for so long the damage he has done to my soul is not repairable...but I still love and miss him at times, then other times I hate him...it’s a merry go round of emotions..

I’m sharing this with you because I don’t want you to think like I did that I could change him...They don’t change because that’s who they are...I learnt the hard way....

Im proud of you that you realise, that he is controlling and you have taken a break from him....I honestly hope that it will be a permanent break from him....I can’t tell you what to do...But I will say, that you deserve someone to love and care for you deeply and respectfully...Not someone, who puts you through hell mentally...

It will get easier as time goes by..no contact is good but hard.. You deserve better then being in emotional hell beautiful Georgie...Please stay safe..and care for you first...

My Care, love and hugs..🦋💜🤗..


I’m going to do that now so I can read it every morning. I’ve done it once before on my phone when I tried leaving him but I think it needs to be done now and be read every morning so I can remember how toxic he was for me. Thank you

Community Member

Hi grandy

i hope his passing has given you peace ❤️
I tried for far to long to try and change him, and Deep down I knew I never could.. That is how I feel too, I still love him but I hate him too. It’s such a roller coaster. Some days I can’t stop thinking about him but other days I don’t think of him much

I know I will lose a lot of people that actually do love and care for me if I ever went back, I couldn’t or wouldn’t allow myself to ever be with him again. It’s taken to much strength to stay away for me to go down that road again. He owes me $15,000 so that doesn’t help..we aren’t in contact about it though, he transfers me $50 a week (ridiculous considering he can pay me more) but that’s what he is like.
thank you for your loving and kind words 🥰

Community Champion
Community Champion

Hello Dear Gorgie,

I’m on a roller coaster still..some days I go down hard and fast when something triggers me, and puts me back into my past with him....I really hope so much that this won’t happen to you...Although it’s been 2 years on and off for you..you have to try to remember who you are..and forget his words that may have made you feel down on yourself please....You and just you are important now, to build yourself up, and know deep in your heart that you matter, your family and friends matter first...

I lost everyone I knew after our marriage, he saw to that..not allowing me to go out with my friends, he was so controlling, right down to my hair and clothes...He had friends and that was all that counted..I’m just sharing a little more, because after marriage most narcissist people think they own us...

I am so very proud of you and your determination in not going back to him...Your loved ones that love and care for you and you love and care for them...are irreplaceable...Trust in them beautiful Georgie...

Im sorry he owes you money, but pleased you don’t need face to face to receive the payback weekly...

Talk here anytime you feel up to it...

I’m going to start getting for bed..Good night lovely Georgie..I hope you sleep soundly tonight..with some peaceful dreams..

My care, love and hugs, dear Georgie..🌈💜🤗.


Community Member
I’m sorry he has done that to you. You sound like you’re a wonderful person. I guess these experiences make us learn in the most weird ways.. slowly but surely I’m sure we will get through this.
Thank you so much for your kind words, you have literally put a smile on my face tonight. Makes me truely think that there a kind and beautiful people still left in this world.
I hope you find love that you can call a real love that’s kind and respectful.
All my love Grandy, thank you again