Who is an empath? Who is a narcissist?
An empath is a person who has the ability to realize or deduce the emotional or mental state of another person, whereas a narcissist is the type of person who has an immoderate admiration of or interest in themselves.
Can you imagine what will happen when an extremely empathetic individual begins a relationship with a narcissistic individual who lacks even an ounce of empathy and only has a massive appreciation for self-import? The consequence is nothing but distressing and toxic for the empath. This form of relationship between an empath and a narcissistic is possibly the most toxic relationship ever found around us.
Characteristics of an empath and a narcissist:
The empath is characteristically a healer who can easily understand others’ pain. They are the most compassionate individuals you will ever find and are always on the mission to help others.
One characteristic that all narcissists have in common is that they are emotionally injured individuals. Having experienced unappreciation or worthlessness at some point in their life leads a narcissist constantly seeking acceptance and admiration from others around them.
The selfless nature of an Empath draws them in the direction of an egocentric narcissist. The narcissist’s consistent need for validation for their worth and the empath’s fondness for soothing others draw them to each other. When these two opposites meet, the attraction between the two may be immense but also greatly toxic.
The chief reason for this relationship to be toxic is due to the vast differences in the emotions and characteristics of the empath and the narcissist. The empath fails to see the narcissist’s dark side, and instead, as they are extremely benevolent, they see others as such too. The empath will believe that their narcissist partner is good-hearted. And the narcissistic individual will be such that he/she will try to make their empathetic partner feel fragile and unhinged to use them in the future for their own selfish needs. Each day the narcissist will try to take control of the empath’s life to make themselves feel validated.
This situation can become a very perplexing one for the empath as they may not even realize that they are associating with an insensitive narcissistic individual. The empath’s delicate nature makes them see good even in their narcissist partner. Due to this, the relationship unsuccessfully becomes a one-way process and not the two-way process as relationships should be, where the empath keeps giving and the narcissist keeps receiving till there’s nothing left to take. It becomes a toxic give and take relationship. The more love the empath gives, the more in control the narcissist will feel and thus make a victim out of the empath.
Empaths are more inclined to the thought that everyone around them is good like them. This gullible nature of theirs often fails them see that not all people are good at heart and that each individual has different agendas. This nature is smartly manipulated by the narcissist. Their only agenda is exploiting the empaths to rise above them. Their contrasting natures makes it impossible for there to be balance in their relationship.
At the beginning of their relationship, the empath and the narcissist will thoroughly enjoy each other’s company. The empath may even do things they don’t enjoy just to make their narcissist partner feel good. The narcissist partner will ask questions like ‘you love me right?’ in a manipulative move to provoke the empath to go extremes in proving the same. Every conversation that will occur will be for the benefit of the narcissist. The narcissistic partner will exploit the thoughts of the empth for their own needs.
Then the time will come when the narcissist will try his best to make the empath feel self-guilt. To gain complete control of the empathetic partner’s life, the narcissist will feel his partner with self-doubt. The empath even when suffering guilt will blame themselves for anything negative that may happen to them or their narcissistic partner. Soon, the empath will feel wounded and may even begin to feel like a victim, giving them some narcissistic traits. When the narcissistic partner sees that the empath is wounded, he feels a great sense of validation. The more unhappy the empath becomes, the happier the narcissist will be.
At this point, the uncertain empath would have lost confidence and will solely depend on their narcissistic partner. The empath will highly focus on his feelings of pain and try to seek approval from the narcissist, not realizing that it was the narcissistic partner who brought this toxicity. When the empath needs the narcissist, they will not be available for their empathetic partner as they are only concerned about themselves.
The empath soon becomes more wounded and depressed. Both the partners start focusing on their individual needs. And this gives the path to toxic issues in the relationship where both the partners feel that the other partner is being selfish by not meeting their emotional needs.
Eventually, this will lead to a break-up. The narcissist will happily go his way to find another victim to manipulate while the empath will try to recover. Since anyone who has been deeply wounded psychologically holds a chance of becoming a narcissist, it will be a tough time for the empath to come out of the break-up.
So, how can an empath ensure that such a psychological damage does not occur in the toxic relationship with the narcissist?
The first thing that the empath needs to do is accept that fact that the narcissist partner will not change. And if the empath waits for their narcissist partner to change, they will only be wasting their time. Instead, the empath should strive to create balance in their lives. It will be a good start for the empath to know where to draw the lines. Loving and protecting others may be in the empath’s nature but it is only damaging when their actions are not at all logical. The moment they realize that they are going out of their ways just to please their narcissistic partner, the empath should get out of the toxic relationship. Staying with the narcissist will only be poisonous for the empath.