Leaving a long-term toxic relationship can be extremely challenging and emotionally draining.
If you are one of the lucky ones and you’ve never been in a suchlike relationship, you may think it’s as simple as just walking away. But it’s much more complicated than that.
Narcissists, emotional abusers, and many other kinds of toxic individuals have one thing in common.
They are skilled manipulators and gaslighters. Through their vicious mind games, they can make their prey believe in everything they want, no matter how bizarre it may sound. What’s more, they are masters in hiding their true colors and denying their faults. This whole set of immoral skills makes their victims delusional and questioning whether they deserve what they’re experiencing.
Therefore, it takes unthinkable amounts of strength and courage for a long-time victim of a narcissist to let go and move on with their life.
Besides, it takes tremendous amounts of effort for them to overpower their emotional abusers and break the chains they were trapped in.
Unfortunately, many people fail to liberate themselves from their abusers’ influence.
Here are five reasons why victims of narcissistic abuse chose to stay in their toxic relationships.
1. They get extremely overwhelmed by anxiety and fear.
When you know it’s time for you to break free from the emotionally damaging relationship you’ve been stuck in for so long, you will inevitably feel afraid and insecure. Making the first step would seem like the hardest challenge you would ever have to face in your life. You have been gaslighted, scapegoated, and manipulated for too long, and now you have no idea how to escape from this false reality your abuser created in your mind. All of this mess in your head blurs your vision, and you can’t tell the difference between what’s real and what’s fake anymore. That’s when anxiety hits you, and you just can’t handle the possible consequences of standing up for yourself.
2. They are afraid to face their demons.
The process of breaking up with a narcissist usually includes facing the trauma you’re running away from. In other words, you need to face your fears and gather the power needed to overcome them. Unfortunately, many people can’t handle the pressure and choose to stay. It seems much easier to stay in a familiar environment than to start over from scratch. That’s why these people prefer to focus on the good things about their relationships. They choose to neglect their own wellbeing, as long as they don’t have to confront their abusers and face their demons.
3. They start to see themselves the way their abuser sees them.
Narcissists perceive the people they play their mind games with as weak, incompetent, and even worthless. Eventually, the subjects of their manipulations begin to view themselves the same way. Moreover, these mischievous individuals know exactly what to do to make their victims beg for their attention. This way narcissists make their prey believe that they need to struggle in order to win their love. But this love will never be unconditional, pure, and selfless. It will never be real. Sadly, many people can’t realize that, and they fall into their abusers’ traps.
4. They fear society’s judgment.
The sad truth is, in most cases society shames victims of emotional abuse for staying in their toxic relationships. But this so-called society consists of people who have never dealt with narcissistic partners in their lives. They blame the victims because they have never been in their shoes. They have never experienced the emotional damages a skilled manipulator can cause. When they’re being blamed for the unbearable situation they’re in, suchlike people begin to feel like they deserve the abuse. They start to think that they are not worthy of being properly loved by a genuine person. So they prefer to stay in their toxic relationship, rather than facing society’s judgment.
5. They aren’t mentally prepared to leave.
There are many professionals, friends, and family that could tell you why you should leave your narcissistic partner. However, if you don’t consciously make this decision, nothing they do or say will fully convince you to do so. The change should start within you. You should truly feel the need for transformation in your life. Sooner or later, you will realize that you deserve so much better. But you need to feel it with your own heart and believe it with your own mind.