A close-up photo of a shattered mirror, reflecting a person's face divided into pieces, symbolizing the emotional turmoil caused by a narcissist's presence.

Why Did God Send Me A Narcissist?

Have you ever wondered why you ended up in a relationship with a narcissist? Many people who have suffered abuse at the hands of a narcissistic partner ask this question. If you have been the victim of narcissistic abuse, you may feel confused, hurt and wonder what you did to deserve such treatment.

If you’re short on time, here’s a quick answer to your question: God does not send narcissists to hurt you. Narcissistic personalities likely result from a complex interplay of biological and environmental factors beyond your control or divine punishment.

In this comprehensive guide, we will explore the root causes of narcissism, how narcissists operate, and why you may have been targeted. You’ll gain insight into narcissistic relationship patterns, how to protect yourself going forward, and find comfort knowing you are not to blame.

What is Narcissistic Personality Disorder?

Definition and Common Traits

Narcissistic personality disorder (NPD) is a mental condition characterized by an inflated sense of self-importance, a lack of empathy for others, and a need for excessive admiration. People with NPD typically have an exaggerated sense of superiority and a preoccupation with success and power.

Their relationships are often exploitative and lack meaningful human connection. According to the DSM-5 criteria, some common traits of NPD include:

  • An exaggerated sense of self-importance, like requiring constant praise and admiration or believing one is superior to others.
  • An extreme preoccupation with oneself, like an obsession with personal success, power, and appearance.
  • A belief that one is special and unique, and associating only with high-status institutions or people.
  • A need for excessive admiration from others.
  • A sense of entitlement, like unreasonable expectations of favorable treatment.
  • Exploiting others for personal gain.
  • A lack of empathy for others.

The prevalence of NPD is estimated to be around 0.5-1% in the general population. Men are more likely to be diagnosed than women. NPD often first appears in early adulthood. Without treatment, symptoms tend to persist throughout one’s lifetime and may worsen with age.

Causes and Risk Factors

The exact causes of NPD are unknown, but likely involve a combination of genetic and environmental factors. Some potential risk factors include:

  • Genetics – Twin studies suggest heritable factors may account for 50-70% of NPD risk.
  • Childhood trauma or abuse – Emotional neglect or abuse in childhood has been linked to later NPD.
  • Parenting issues – Spoiling or lack of discipline from parents may play a role.
  • Neurobiology – Differences in brain structure and function have been noted.
  • Culture – Individualistic cultures like the US foster narcissism more than collectivist cultures.

NPD is believed to stem from a dysfunctional childhood environment interfering with secure attachment and identity development. For example, excessive parental pampering may foster grandiose expectations, while inadequate praise or empathetic mirroring may leave a child insecure and craving attention or admiration later in life.

Trauma and inconsistent early relationships with caregivers may also impair capacity for empathy. Ultimately, NPD likely arises from an interplay between biological vulnerability and maladaptive responses to environmental factors.

Why You Did Not Deserve Abuse from a Narcissist

You Are Not to Blame for Their Behavior

Being in a relationship with a narcissist can make you feel like you’re going crazy. Their manipulative and self-centered behavior leaves you feeling confused, anxious, and depressed. You may start to believe that their cruelty and abuse is somehow your fault. But this is never the case.

Narcissistic abuse is about power and control, not love. The narcissist chooses to act the way they do – their behavior is not your responsibility.

Here are some key reasons why you are not to blame for a narcissist’s abusive behavior:

  • Narcissists lack empathy – They are unable to understand or care about others’ feelings. Their actions are driven by their own desires, not consideration for you.
  • They feel entitled – Narcissists believe they deserve special treatment and excessive admiration. They think basic relationship reciprocity doesn’t apply to them.
  • Their actions serve themselves – Everything narcissists do is to build themselves up and keep power/control. Their behavior is not a reflection on you.
  • The abuse follows a pattern – Narcissists act out an idealize-devalue-discard cycle. The fact that this pattern is predictable shows their abuse is intentional, not your fault.
  • Your kindness gets exploited – Your empathy, forgiveness and desire to help gets used against you. The narcissist’s ability to exploit this says nothing about your worth.

The narcissist’s disorder means they interpret everything from a lens of self-interest. You could be the most loving partner in the world, and they would still find faults and fabricate reasons to criticize you. The abuse stems from their dysfunctional inner world – not anything you did.

Your kindness is NOT a weakness.

Narcissists Often Target Empathetic People

Have you ever wondered why you ended up with a narcissistic partner when you are an exceptionally understanding and compassionate person? Research shows that narcissists often target empathetic, conscientious individuals as partners. Here’s why:

  • You give them validation – Your caring nature and willingness to listen intently makes them feel admired.
  • You try to help them – Your desire to alleviate their apparent troubles masks their abusive/manipulative tendencies.
  • You forgive their bad behavior – Your empathy leads you to excuse their actions and give second chances.
  • You sacrifice your needs for them – Your caring instinct means they can exploit your goodwill.
  • You self-reflect on the issues – Your conscientiousness means you will try to fix ‘your part’ in the problems they cause.

Essentially, your wonderful qualities like compassion, patience and perseverance make you the perfect supply for a narcissist. The fact that you have these traits does NOT make you deserving of abuse. It is evidence that the narcissist groomed you and took advantage of your natural kindness.

You may feel like you are somehow defective for being victimized in this way. But the truth is you have a big heart – a quality the narcissist lacks. You deserve real love and reciprocity. The narcissist’s inability to value your worth says everything about their disorder, and nothing about you.

Healing from Narcissistic Abuse

Give Yourself Time and Grace to Heal

Recovering from narcissistic abuse takes time. Don’t rush your healing process or expect overnight results. Be patient and compassionate with yourself. This traumatic experience can impact your self-esteem, so remind yourself daily that you are worthy of love and respect.

Consider starting a self-care routine that includes activities like journaling, exercising, spending time in nature, or attending support groups. Do things that make you feel relaxed, joyful and grounded. Surround yourself with positive people who validate your feelings.

Give yourself space to process complex emotions as you grieve the loss of the relationship. Recognize that healing is not linear. You’ll have good days and bad days, so accept the ups and downs. With time and effort, you’ll regain your inner peace and strength.

Seek Validation and Support

You’re not alone in your recovery journey. Seek support and validation from trusted friends, family members or professionals. Join narcissistic abuse support groups, either in-person or online, to connect with others who understand your struggles.

Talking to people who’ve had similar experiences can help normalize your feelings and make you feel less isolated. You may pick up helpful coping strategies from support groups too. According to one study, abuse survivors who attended support groups showed significant reductions in post-traumatic stress disorder symptoms.

Consider working with a trauma-informed therapist who is knowledgeable about narcissistic abuse recovery. An empathetic counselor can provide tools to process the emotional pain and re-establish your self-worth.

Establish Strong Boundaries Moving Forward

A vital part of healing is learning to set strong boundaries to protect yourself going forward. Say no to anything that makes you uncomfortable or drains you emotionally. Limit interactions with toxic people who undermine your self-esteem.

Be mindful of who you let into your inner circle. Avoid giving second chances to those who have hurt you. Respect your own needs and wants. Keep your distance from manipulative behaviors like guilt-tripping, gaslighting or verbal abuse.

Learn to identify red flags in new relationships so you can detect narcissists early on. Trust actions over words. Pay attention if someone seems excessively charming at first but then starts violating your boundaries. Protect your peace by removing yourself from any devaluing situations.

With time, self-work and strong boundaries, you’ll regain your sense of self-worth after narcissistic abuse. Be gentle with yourself throughout your healing process. You have the strength to overcome this, and brighter days lie ahead.

Signs to Watch for in New Relationships

Recognize Early Warning Signs of Narcissism

When starting a new romantic relationship, it is important to be aware of potential red flags that could indicate your partner has narcissistic tendencies. Pay attention if they seem excessively preoccupied with themselves and constantly seek validation and admiration from others.

Other warning signs include:

  • They take advantage of others to achieve their goals.
  • They exaggerate their own importance and achievements.
  • They become irrational or angry if challenged or criticized.
  • They lack empathy and don’t consider your feelings or needs.

According to research from the Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin (https://journals.sagepub.com), around 6% of the population has narcissistic personality disorder. So it’s important to look out for these signs early on before getting more deeply involved.

Pay attention to any instincts or “gut feelings” you have that something may be off.

Listen to Your Intuition About New Partners

When starting a relationship, it’s normal to feel excitement about a new partner. But try not to ignore inner warnings or red flags. Your intuition evolves to protect you, so listen to it.

  • Make note if your new partner disrespects boundaries or manipulates conversations to be about them.
  • Consider if they show a lack of empathy or interest when you share vulnerabilities.
  • Watch if they frequently stretch the truth to make themselves look better.

These could be signs your gut is picking up on narcissistic behaviors even early on.

According to marriage therapist Emma Stancek (https://www.regain.us), being self-aware is key before committing further in a new relationship. Listen to your inner voice and notice patterns over time. Seek input from trusted friends and family as well.

Getting insight early about concerning behaviors can help avoid years of emotional turmoil. Don’t ignore or rationalize away what your intuition may be trying to tell you about a new partner’s character.

You Can Thrive After Narcissistic Abuse

Focus on Self-Care and Personal Growth

Recovering from narcissistic abuse starts with focusing on yourself. Make self-care a priority by getting enough sleep, eating healthy foods, exercising, and practicing mindfulness techniques like meditation or yoga.

Spend time doing things you enjoy, reconnect with old hobbies, and discover new passions. Surround yourself with positive affirmations and find ways to boost your self-esteem.

Consider working with a therapist or joining a support group to process the trauma and establish healthy boundaries. Learning about narcissism can help you understand the dysfunctional dynamics and prevent getting involved with another narcissist.

Read self-help books, take an online class, or watch educational videos to continue growing.

Surround Yourself with Positive People

Cut toxic people out of your life and fill that space with supportive friends and family. Make new connections by taking a class, joining a club, volunteering, or reaching out to old acquaintances. Having strong social connections fosters emotional resilience.

Open up to trustworthy loved ones about what you went through. Their empathy and validation can help you heal.

Avoid negative environments where you might encounter your narcissistic abuser. Limit interactions if you have children together or must see them at work or school. Refuse to get drawn into arguments and set clear boundaries. Become a positive role model for your kids.

Surrounding yourself with good company will reinforce that you deserve to be treated with kindness and respect.


In closing, know that you did not deserve narcissistic abuse, regardless of what your ex may have told you. This experience does not define you or your worth. With time and effort, you can move forward into healthier, happier relationships.

Most importantly, have compassion for yourself throughout the healing process. You are stronger than you know.

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