Introducing the “Waking Up to Narcissism” podcast. I realize the term “narcissist” is being used liberally on social media and in the news. In many of these situations, an individual may be expressing more narcissistic tendencies, or behaviors, rather than checking enough boxes to be diagnosed as having “Narcissistic Personality Disorder” yet the damage to the relationship is often the same. -I have released over 280 episodes of The Virtual Couch podcast, and I am blown away as the download numbers are in the millions, but the episodes with the most downloads are those involving anything about narcissism. This led me to create a specific podcast focused on the challenges for those in relationships with people expressing narcissistic traits. -When people in these relationships reach out they typically identify feelings of inadequacy, self-doubt, and anxiety with no support from their partner. People share with me how empowering it is to learn about things like “gaslighting,” trauma bonds, the connection between highly-sensitive people (HSP) and narcissists, and more.-Others simply express a repeated pattern of feeling unseen, unappreciated, or “stuck” in their relationships as efforts to get help, either as a couple or individually, only tend to make things worse. -Please find the podcast, listen to the trailer and subscribe, rate, review, share; this message needs to reach those who may be struggling in relationships with people who have narcissistic traits. They need to know there is hope, it is never too late to learn tools to help you improve your situation. -I have so many topics to share, experts coming on the show, and real people who are currently in relationships with narcissistic individuals, who are navigating a divorce, or who are co-parenting with someone with narcissistic traits. Please don’t hesitate to contact me with your own questions, as I plan on covering them all in upcoming episodes. #narcissist #narcissiticabuse #narcissistsurvivor #therapy #virtualcouch #tonyoverbay #tonyoverbayquote #quote #podcast #podcasting #acceptancecommitmenttherapy #motivation #coach #addictionrecovery #narcissism #happiness #behappy #mentalhealth #wellness #recovery #selfcare #anxiety #relax #mindfulness #happy #depression #mentalhealthawareness #mentalhealthmatters #psychology #MadeWithDescript #DescriptPro
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[00:00:00] Hey, everybody. My name is Tony Overbay, and welcome to the Waking Up to Narcissism podcast. Now I am a practicing licensed marriage and family therapist. I'm a speaker and author, and I'm host of another podcast called The Virtual Couch, which focuses on mental health issues. And I cover topics ranging from parenting to anxiety, addiction, depression and alfer episodes and courses on how to have a better marriage. But over the past four years, I've noticed that certain topics that I cover on my podcast would literally receive thousands and thousands more downloads than the other episodes. And those were episodes that had anything to do with narcissism. And at this point, I've worked with well over a thousand couples in therapy in my office. And over the years, as I work with couples, I start noticing patterns and I'll throw out an unscientific bit of data here. And I will say that for 750 of those thousand couples, you can teach them a framework of communication, even if they've been through some really, really crazy things in their marriage. And that framework of communication, which is something I based my marriage course on, they learned these communication skills and then they these are skills they maybe have never seen modeled growing up. It's a bit odd. They didn't know what they didn't know. And they learn they embrace the skills. They put them into practice and their marriage truly becomes magnetic. But then there's the other side of that coin.
[00:01:15] So let's say the remaining two hundred and fifty from my chair, there's a constant pattern of the relationship just being a little more difficult when one of the partners controls far too much of the narrative where the other partner almost reflexively defers to the more dominant partner. And everything about that session just is different. But it's also the same. You start to see these patterns as a therapist. There's no real accountability. The kind of spouse may be a bit more sensitive, and that's brought up as a negative. The more assertive spouse often lets me know how they get it. They didn't realize things were as bad. But now that they're here, they understand. Great session. We're good. We're good, right, honey? And I see that resigned look in the face of that spouse who feels like they have no voice. They say, well, yeah, yeah, sure. I guess we're good. And this is if they feel like they missed their chance of being actually heard or being validated or possibly having somebody help them try and help their spouse understand what they do or how controlling they are and so on and so on. So back to that narcissism. And I realize that there is a good chance that you've been hearing more and more about narcissism over the past few years. And you may even have a view that the narcissist is this grandiose, malicious figure who is out for absolute power and that they're completely aware of everything they are doing.
[00:02:31] And if you could only explain yourself or your situation better, that then this person would finally understand that they would then take ownership of their behavior and that you could live peacefully at that moment. It really like rainbows would appear in the sky. The unicorn would traipse by and hang on a minute. There actually may be a pot of gold by in that shed in your backyard. But in reality, people who have narcissistic tendencies and traits are far more common than we know. I often say that that one of the common things that nurses do is this concept of gaslighting. We're going to cover that on the podcast. But gaslighting is a childhood defense mechanism. So too often to the narcissists, they really are not equipped with the skills of taking ownership or accountability or having. So some of us may wonder how or why we always leave a conversation with a parent or a spouse just feeling a little bit worse, or why it can feel like it really doesn't matter what you say or do when you're talking to somebody in your life, they can turn it around and make you feel like you were the crazy one or why didn't even bring that up or were you love bombed in the beginning of the relationship? Do you feel like this was one of the most amazing people that you had ever met? Only now to feel like you don't even really know who this person is, and they certainly don't know who you are.
[00:03:36] Or does the conversation continually go back to them, even if it starts with the question that they ask you, or do they feed off of your compliments? But can you truly offer constructive criticism or do you know how that one's going to play out? So, sure, you tell them everything that they're saying or doing. You know, it's great. You look fantastic. You did that. You did that thing well. Do they put others down in order to lift themselves up? Do they have a pretty interesting relationship with things like money and finances? Is that become very much the language of love for them? Do they often lack empathy or do you find yourself feeling unseen or not understood or you regularly told things to you about you that are completely false, or are you constantly being put down or teased? And if they go too far, where they just they're just kidding. Are you or too sensitive and you really need to get over it or do the gaslit you? Meaning do you no longer feel like you are yourself or know who you even are? Do you constantly find yourself apologizing for things, or do you feel like everything you do around this person is wrong? Do you often have to try and bring your response to your partner to try and just keep the peace? And do you find yourself is almost this human buffer between you and the kids? Do you often wonder if you're being too shy or too sensitive or or do you feel like maybe you're too anxious? Or do you find yourself being less confident than you used to be? Do you find yourself making excuses for your partner's behavior, or do you start to feel more isolated from even your own friends and family? One of the biggest problems I've seen is that people who aren't in these types of relationships.
[00:05:00] May only see the kind side of the. So when you try and express yourself, you may often get met with. Yeah, but it could be worse. So you stop sharing details, you feel more alone, maybe more isolated. Here's one of the examples of the hundreds examples that listeners have sent me. Tony, thank you for your podcast, et cetera, et cetera. OK, here goes. I came home from work one evening a little early, only to find my husband home as well. So first of all. So first off, I had texted him to tell him I'd be home a little early, that's because if I don't, he will get mad at me. But when I ask him the same, if I ask him to text me if he's on his way home early, he gets mad at me because the schedule is all over the place, which it's not, because at one point in our marriage, I literally track the schedule to show him.
[00:05:39] No, honey, see, it's really not. You're fairly consistent. So if you're going to be home first, maybe you could start dinner. But that didn't go so well. He didn't take ownership or accountability of that. And he told me that why I'm the crazy one for tracking a schedule and trying to prove him wrong. But it also isn't that simple, because that, too, is complicated when what we're having for dinner is always on me. Even though he says that he doesn't care, we he's easy. He's agreeable. But when I make about 90 percent of the things I do, he tells me what he doesn't like about it. But then when I make those changes the next time, then he will tell me that I didn't make the change very well and that he doesn't even remember telling me that he didn't like that part of the meal and he'll get the kids on his side. So then they desperately want his love. So I feel like at times it's gang up on mom. But on this particular day, I texted him. He didn't respond. So again, I didn't know he was home. So I walk in. He's making dinner. Now, it sounds simple, right? You might think, well, just tell him thank you.
[00:06:31] But it's not that easy. If I say thank you for starting dinner, then he may. And he has in the past say, well, you act like I never cook. I certainly can't believe that you say it like that. Can't you just come in and start helping? But I know that one, too. I've come in and started helping before, and he's told me, I got you. You don't think I can do this on my own? Or look at you trying to take control. But then there's other times where I come in and he started dinner and he says, hey, you've had a rough week. You sit down, I'm going to cook dinner where there's other times right here. It's about time I feel like I'm a single parent, this marriage, which is something that I've thought so many times. OK, Tony, is this gaslighting? Am I the one who's crazy? I'm not going to bring this up to him because I have no clue how it's going to turn out which version of him I'm going to get the one who dotes on me, who wants to spend money on everybody and everything, or the one who seems repulsed by me, who constantly lets me know that I'm spending his money. So I'm constantly on edge. When I hear his car pull in the driveway, I feel my heart rate rise. I find myself worrying about whether or not the house has picked up enough if the kids are where they're supposed to be, I feel like I'm losing my mind.
[00:07:29] So if you've identified with anything that you've heard in this trailer, I would highly recommend that you hit that subscribe button wherever you listen to podcasts. I have so many topics that we're going to cover, as well as dozens of real life interviews and stories from people who are in the thick of it, who are in relationships with narcissistic personality types right now to people navigating the process of a divorce or people trying to cope with a narcissist, to people trying to truly find themselves after waking up to narcissism. And I want to hear from you. If you have questions about narcissistic behavior, if you believe you may be in a relationship with someone with narcissistic tendencies to a full-blown narcissistic personality disorder. Visit my website at Tony Overbaked and send me a question through my contact form. And I look forward to hearing from you and helping you like I've helped thousands of people before you learn how to truly wake up to narcissism and get back on the path toward that person that you were born to be. So I hope to hear from you soon, and I hope you'll join me as I bring so many examples and deep dives, questions and answers, all the things that you've wanted to know as maybe you have been waking up to narcissism.