We Help Women Dealing With Narcissism or Codependency in Their Relationships

If your partner lacks empathy towards you, needs constant attention, or you engage in mutually self-destructive tendencies, you may be in a codependent or narcissistic relationship.

What is Narcissism?

Narcissistic Personality Disorder (listed in the DSM-5) is ultimately a disorder of self-esteem.

Often these behavioural traits include grandiosity, need for admiration, lack of empathy. It is characterized by variable and vulnerable self-esteem with attempts at regulation through attention and approval seeking and either overt or covert grandiosity.

As women – and especially when we are in a new relationship – we are socialized to give second chances, third chances and chronically turn the other cheek.  We want our relationships to work out (especially if they took a long time to find).  The warm “fuzzies” of a new relationship can lead us to forgive repeatedly.  But often in hindsight, we can begin to unravel each incident or behaviour through different eyes when we realize that we have been living in a toxic and destructive relationship where we have been used, disrespected and even discarded.

If this seems too familiar to you, reach out for help. We’re here to help you find your summer.

Identifying the Signs of a Narcissist

Here are some of the most common traits of a narcissist:

  • Lack of Empathy – Yawning or behaviour that shows that on a regular basis he is not listening when you speak: picking up his devices, looking around instead of at you when you are speaking, or yawning while you are speaking.  
  • Grandiosity – Talking about things or sharing stories where things are “larger than life” details such as the great love story” or the idea of an “ideal love”. 
  • Entitled – Treating service employees badly, such as bartenders, clerks, valet parking staff, restaurant servers, doormen, desk clerks with entitled behaviour and looking for upgrades and perks.  
  • Anger & Rage – Inappropriate displays of anger such as how he drives.  Erratic, cutting off other drivers, criticizing them, tailing them closely and cursing at them.  Also outbursts of rage randomly which are disproportionate to the circumstances
  • Overprotective & Intrusive – Being protective of his phone with obsessive zeal and will have passwords that are fiercely guarded yet asking endless questions about whom you are going to see, and where you have been, and to even go so far as to snoop into your electronic world.
  • Hypersensitive – He is too sensitive, but then you transitioned to thinking that maybe it was you who was not being nice enough, and then over time you may have become more and more careful to the point of self-censorship.
  • Jealousy – Early escalation of jealousy where they would be suspicious and ask lots of questions, even sneaking peeks at phones and emails, and stalking social media accounts.  They would limit or forbid contact with friends with whom there could be a possible romantic interest.  This gets interpreted as “care” rather than controlling and isolating behaviour.
  • Lying – The longer and more confused the story, the greater the likelihood it is a fiction.  Pay attention to when the numbers don’t add up and when things do not make sense.  Because over time, lying can take a genuine toll on your psyche and impact all of your relationships and your ability to trust. 

These are a few indicators, and there are many more! Also remember not every narcissist is the same.

Four Seasons Counselling :: What is Narcissism and What Are the Signs of Narcissism?
Four Seasons Counselling :: What is Codependency & What Are the Signs of Codependency?

What is Codependency?

Co-dependency is defined as a failure to complete the essential developmental process of secure bonding and the developmental tasks associated with it.  This creates experiences often characterized by:

  • Worried about being alone  
  • Feeling trapped in abusive, controlling relationships 
  • Having low self-esteem
  • Needing constant approval and support from others in order to feel good about yourself 
  • Feeling powerless to change destructive relationships
  • Needing alcohol, food, work, sex or some other outside stimulation to distract from your feelings 
  • Having undefined psychological boundaries 
  • Feeling like a martyr 
  • Being a people-pleaser 
  • Being unable to experience true intimacy and love

In order to gain self and move towards a path of feeling “whole”, there are a number of steps in order to move you along the path.  This journey takes time, motivation and some genuine acceptance of self.

Overcoming Codependency

With the right understanding, guidance and toolset, we help our clients: 

  • stop being dependent on people or things outside yourself
  • have a solid inner sense of uniqueness and of who you are 
  • get close to others without fearing you will lose yourself 
  • effectively meet your needs by asking others directly when you need help
  • maintain positive self-esteem even when criticized by others
  • be in relationships that are give and take
  • say no when you mean no 
  • depend on yourself to meet your needs 

Let Us Help You Find Your Summer

If you’re struggling to deal with life’s challenges, you’re not alone and there’s no need to feel ashamed or embarrassed. All people – and especially women – go through different phases of life. Life naturally presents us with challenges and obstacles, whether to do with our work, our families and friends, our relationships and even internal struggles with ourselves.

We help people explore and understand the problems that they face. By developing the right mindset and tools for articulating their feelings and having their voices heard, they are empowered to face and overcome their challenges.

Using their newfound confidence, courage and bravery, they emerge from their winter, through a spring season marked by personal growth, and into the joys and happiness of summer.

We’re ready to help you find your summer. Let’s connect and get started.

Start Changing Your Season Today

Four Seasons Counselling | Visit our Counselling Offices in Vaughan

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400 Creditstone Road, Unit 12A
Concord, ON L4K 3Z3