The Real Reason Why Empaths And Narcissists Are A Toxic Combination
When a relationship consists of one highly empathic person, and one person who completely lacks empathy, the union is toxic to the core.
Empaths and narcissists are polar opposites. While some believe that opposites do attract, the truth is that if two people have core dynamics that differ to the extreme, there can never be a healthy relationship.
Lindsay Dodgson writes in Business Insider, “Empaths are ’emotional sponges,’ who can absorb feelings from other people very easily. This makes them them very attractive to narcissists, because they see someone who will fulfill their every need in a selfless way.”
Narcissists are emotionally wounded people who continue the cycle of pain by inflicting damage on those around them. Because the empath is a natural healer, they will do everything they can to ease the suffering of the narcissist- even if they don’t really want the help.
Empaths will see the real reason behind the mask the narcissist wears, and this is why they continue to forgive them.
However, it is important for everyone to remember that you can not fix another person; you can’t force them to become the person you know they have the potential to be. They have to be ready to make that choice for themselves, and unfortunately, most narcissists do not see a need to change.
Psychology Today author Deborah Ward says, “Narcissists create relationships with [empaths] that essentially allows them to feed off the kindness of the empath, to satisfy their insatiable appetite for praise, attention, admiration, power and material things until the [empath] is left emotionally drained, exhausted and powerless.”
Which is why so many empaths feel it is hard to leave the relationship, even if it is toxic.
Dr Judith Orloff tells Business Insider, “What narcissists see in empaths is a giving, loving person who is going to try and be devoted to you and love you and listen to you,” she said. “But unfortunately empaths are attracted to narcissists, because at first this is about a false self. Narcissists present a false self, where they can seem charming and intelligent, and even giving, until you don’t do things their way, and then they get cold, withholding and punishing.”
When an empath experiences the manipulation and control tactics, they might wonder if it is all in their head, or what they could possibly do to remedy the situation. And this is where the biggest issue comes into play. Empaths find it nearly impossible to accept that some things are simply not theirs to fix. It’s not their responsibility to make sense of what a narcissist does or says, because their isn’t any sense to it.
Everything the narcissist does is for their own gain. They don’t see other people as friends or partners, they see them as pawns- only something to use when they need it.
Empaths are genuine and kind people, so they expect others to be the same.
When an empath has their first encounter with a narcissist, it will open their eyes to a world they didn’t know existed.
A world of confusion and denial eventually makes for an exhausting relationship. Empaths can tolerate a lot of things as long as they have time to recharge their batteries and recover, but even they reach their limits.
There can never be a healthy balance between a narcissist and an empath because there is no balance of “give and take.” The empath always gives, and the narcissist always takes.
When it is time to leave, all empaths should remember this: You are stronger than you know, and the narcissist (and their trauma) is not a reflection of who you are or what you are capable of.