An excellent blog post from Grace for my Heart, The End of the Narcissistic Friendship. It is refreshing, for those of us who have suffered from a narcissistic friendship, to find this addressed, and not just narcissistic family members or lovers.
Each different kind of relationship has its own dynamic, and while narcissistic relationships share many traits, you don’t sleep with your narcissistic friend (unless you were “friends with benefits”). Your friend was not your mother, etc. etc.
Your narc mother will affect you because your mother is supposed to love you, or your narc spouse will affect you because this is your most intimate and supposedly your most faithful relationship.
But your narc friend will affect you because you chose this person, believed in and trusted in this person, and shared your life with this person in a different way and with a different kind of loyalty than you have to your parent or spouse.
It should not be discounted; it is a strong and beautiful bond when it is real. It has potential to wound us severely, but in a different way than the other relationships.
So it is good to find articles which treat it seriously, rather than ignoring that narcs don’t just affect their spouses and children.
As GfmH writes,
I have suggested that narcissistic friendships are among the most difficult of narcissistic relationships because they lack the normal bonds narcissists use to keep people close.
A friend can simply walk away without a divorce or the break-up of a family. The narcissist must manipulate and bind through a variety of powerful tools.
Those tools, including intimidation, addiction, even blackmail, compromise boundaries in unexpected ways.
Intimidation and emotional blackmail are what Tracy used on me to bind me to her. Basically, without her friendship and approval, I could not be friends with Richard–even though I knew already that she was abusive and nasty, and wanted nothing to do with her.
So the narcissist concentrated his or her super-power on you. Few people are able to resist a narcissist when he turns on his charm.
You might feel foolish for having trusted such a person, but you should understand that this is what they do best. Narcissists use people.
In order to do that, they twist and manipulate and compromise until they get what they want. This time it was you, but it has happened to many.
Richard turned on his charm and made me addicted to him.
…Or maybe you finally realized the truth about the relationship. It was one-sided. You gave, but you didn’t receive. You gave all the time and usually it was inconvenient.
…Remember that the narcissist messes with your head. Not only do they blame others for their own problems, but they are very good at getting the others to accept the blame. Part of what you feel is what the narcissist has planted into your thinking. You have to reject the blame.
The bottom line in all of this is that separation from the narcissist may lead to symptoms of depression. That depression may be serious, depending on the level of addiction or self-incrimination.
Read more at the above link if you have dealt with a narc friendship.