Melanie Tonia Evans

Narcissist Or Addict… Can They Ever Change?

Written by   Melanie Tonia Evans Permalink 4
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Written By   Melanie Tonia Evans

 

I know how painful it is to be caught up in someone’s addictions – suffering the anguish of the invalidation of your needs, safety, love requirements and security – as well as seeing this person destroying themselves and others.

Of course, you hope that you can help them overcome the addiction, so that you and they can be happy and have a fulfilling relationship – whether it be your lover, spouse, child, relative or friend.

But how do we even know if this person is capable of ‘becoming decent’ even if they lose their addiction?

And why is it, in trying to help this person, often we just get sicker and sicker and they don’t stop doing the things that are ripping our life, as well as theirs, apart?

In today’s Thriver TV episode we take a deep dive into this very important question – ‘Is there any hope for this addict, or are they a narcissist how can’t be healthy – addictions or not?’

 

 

Video Transcript

So many people ask me this question, and maybe the following questions go round and round in your mind too.

Does this person behave like this because she or he has addiction issues?

Or … is this person simply a narcissist, through and through?

This is what today’s Thriver TV episode is all about – cutting the wheat away from the chaff and working out once and for all, whether this person behaves narcissistically as a result of their addiction, or is their addiction just another part of their ingrained narcissism?

I also really hope today that you learn a little more about what drives addictions and what is really necessary to get off addictions. And I promise you I am going to tell you exactly how you can distinguish if this person is behaving narcissistically because they are an addict, or if they really are a narcissist.

Ok … let’s get started with looking at some truths about narcissism. Narcissists are addicts – and their primary drug is narcissistic supply. They need it as much as an ice or crack addict needs ice or crack. Narcissists have disowned their inner being, and therefore as a result of this, their pathway through to Life, Source, Oneness, and connection with feelings of security, love, and approval are thwarted.

Narcissists are out on the raw rugged edge feeling terminally uneasy, distrusting and insecure and therefore suffer inescapable emotional trauma, meaning self-mediation is needed in order to function. That is what every addict does – attempts to self-medicate inner anxiety, terror and feelings of annihilation with a substance or pastime that drowns out (or numbs out) the inner screams.

Narcissists frenetically seek narcissistic supply – acclaim, accolades, attention, and notoriety. All of this is known as ‘significance’. A narcissist without narcissistic supply is as empty and as manically depressed, panicked, nasty or catatonic as any hardcore drug addict unable to score.

The truth is this: if this primary addiction is not cleaned up then this person will never be available to truly love you and supply you with a healthy and happy life because their life is all about them – getting the drug that makes them feel better. If you are not supplying the drug of narcissistic supply adequately enough you will be punished or discarded. If someone else comes along with a better offer the narcissist will shift their attention and allegiance there.

The narcissist is not interested in healing and reviving their True Self or getting off the addiction of narcissistic supply and unless you understand that this is a self-medicating addiction, you may not realise how serious this issue is.

You may think that the narcissist’s sex addictions, alcoholism, gambling or whatever it is that he or she has a co-addiction to is the true issue, because that is what we are all taught to believe – yet even if the narcissist somehow beats these issues (and some do) there is no way, as a narcissist, they will give up their nastiest primary addiction that allows them to minimalise, dehumanise, discard, punish, mine and rape people’s souls and lives – namely the narcissist being hooked on narcissistic supply.

Okay, now let’s look at hardcore addicts who are not narcissists. It may be very difficult to distinguish between the two. Addicts are nasty, angry, accusatory and usually refuse to take responsibility for their behaviour. Additionally, they pathologically lie in order to maintain and regulate the supply of their addiction.

Just like narcissists, they are unavailable to connect, love or care for others, because its all about them – specifically feeding the addiction going on inside them – and it doesn’t matter what this addiction is, it’s all the same, the addiction is a symptom of some deeper trauma

These addicts, like all addicts, are self-medicating the inner emptiness and pain of unworthiness; the anxieties and fear that are all to do with unresolved traumas. What often happens with any addicts is this: if they give up an addiction through sheer will-power, rather than do the inner work, they usually pick up another addiction to replace it because there is still the need to self-medicate the still existing inner trauma.

This is very true for narcissists too – the truth is they never give up narcissistic supply and terrible abusive behaviour ensues whether they are drinking, gambling or being sex and porn addicts or not.

Naturally, it can be heartbreaking to see someone you care about deep in addiction. You know they are destroying themselves and you want to rescue them – but there is a very hard truth about addicts and what is necessary for them to recover. And, its also the most difficult things for us to do because it is totally counterintuitive to what we think we should be doing.

I want to share this story with you because is the most perfect story I have ever heard in relation to this topic. Years ago I took a dear friend of mine to a gambler’s anonymous (GA) meeting. At the tea break, I had a fascinating chat with the man hosting the meeting and his wife.  He was in his 60s and he told me how he battled drinking, drugs and gambling for 30 years.

For years his wife tried to get him help and stayed with him, but he never changed. Eventually, finally, she said this to him – ‘I will no longer be with an addict. Move out and don’t come near me until you have a 6-month clean bill of health.’ She meant it. She was resolute. She had no idea whether or not she would be available for him if he did return clean and sober (she wasn’t waiting for him) or even if he had the capacity to change.

He tried to get around it. He tried to break her boundaries (as addicts do). He twisted, turned, poured on charm, promises, then when that didn’t work, anger and threats. But she didn’t capitulate once. She meant it. She had no control over his life but she had fully taken back control of her own.

No more addicts in her life ever again – EVER!

Yes, she lost security, yes she had to struggle alone to look after herself and the kids, but her soul became more important than bricks and mortar.

After a brief stint in rehab, he tried to come back – but she wouldn’t take him. Her agreement was ONLY written proof that he had not drugged, gambled or drank in 6 months. For two years he fell back on addictions, but with therapy and regular GA, AA and NA meetings and getting totally serious, he finally broke through.

When I met him and his wife, he had been addiction free for over 10 years. His wife expressed how she adored him and said he was the most beautiful man she could ever hope to be with – as well as father and grandfather.

He said about her, ‘She saved my life. If she hadn’t done what she did I would be dead.’

I want you to understand the power of Quantum Law here – so within, so without – people can only love us and treat us identically to how we love and treat ourselves. If we stay around abuse and addictions, then we are abusing ourselves and we also have our own addiction to this person – self-medicating something inside us that we haven’t turned inwards to heal and free ourselves from yet. And, we not only enable this person to keep abusing us, but also to remain being an addict.

It isn’t until people no longer have the roof over their head, food on the table and their bills paid, as well as any of our attention, that they are left having to face and hopefully heal themselves. Unless they get to this rock bottom they will never have the opportunity to.

This is where we have to let go, take care of ourselves properly and allow that to happen and NOT be attached to the outcome. Too many addicts get saved from hitting their rock bottom from well-meaning people, and never heal anything. And, either way – whether they return or not – we get to live our truth.

Please know a narcissist is not going to get well, however an addict who is not a narcissist like this lovely man possibly can. But will you ever know if you don’t become and walk and demonstrate the truth of your own soul and what you will and won’t accept as your life?

No!

Okay, I understand totally how terrifying it is to let go and set your boundaries, mean it and no longer compromise yourself, and if you are struggling with this question – narcissist or addict? – I want to show you exactly how to find, release and heal your inner traumas that are causing you to sell yourself out and self-medicate by staying attached to this person.

And that’s vital because it is the only way to clean up your life and start creating it as ‘addict and narcissist free.’

So … to get started on this and get relief asap, you can sign up to my free 16-day recovery course, which includes a profoundly healing workshop with me, a set of eBooks and lots more.

So until next time… keep smiling, keep healing and keep thriving because there’s nothing else to do

 

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Melanie Tonia Evans is an international narcissistic abuse recovery expert. She is an author, radio host, and founder of Quanta Freedom Healing and The Narcissistic Abuse Recovery Program. Melanie's healing and teaching methods have liberated thousands of people from the effects of narcissistic abuse world-wide.

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23 Thoughts on Narcissist Or Addict… Can They Ever Change?
  • lindacohen6115@gmail.com'
    Linda
    June 14, 2018

    Hi Melanie, I always get clarity whenever you post your Thriver TV episodes.

    In my opinion, and based on my experience, I feel the addiction is part of the narcissism. My ex had a very unhealthy addiction to women with 20 inch nails! LOL Quite bizzare. He basically sought them out online, and would meet for sex. True story. He hid it. So on top of the cheating, this is what he was doing. What is very interesting about this unhealthy “fetish” is that he obviously treated these women (the nails) as objects. Didn’t matter who was behind them, it was a sexual addiction for him that started at a very young age. This was a very dark side to him, aside from all the other narcissistic traits. But this in particular, he kept it hidden.

    When I discovered all these shananigans, and I confronted him (this was before I actually realized he was a narc), he denied it, then later admitted it but with an incredible amount of shame.

    Needless to say, this is when I ran as fast as possible. The rest all unfolded as it was needed for me, but it was an incredible story. Crazy stuff that you just can’t make up!

    So grateful I am in a different place today.

    • Melanie Tonia Evans
      June 14, 2018

      Hi Linda,

      I am so pleased I help you feel more clear!

      Awww goodness that is creepy!!!

      Thank goodness Dear Lady you are no longer connected to him.

      Mel 🙏💕❤️

  • shanapink90@gmail.com'
    Linda Allen
    June 14, 2018

    Well, this is a great issue for me right now. I need to recover from the abuse from my ex-narc, the realization that my mother (who just died in May) was a narcissistic mother and my own addictions which I do use to numb out or to distract myself from my core inner wounds. It’s time for the craziness to stop. My mother is gone so it’s time to move forward while letting go of the past of never getting her approval. I’ve done so much reading about narcissistic stuff as well as being involved with a lot of online support groups. I’ve moved on to the groups that are about recovering from extreme trauma resulting from emotional abuse and a couple groups on C-PTSD and recovery. I know how you feel about support groups that just keep going round and round reliving the abuse and not moving into the recovery phase.

    • Melanie Tonia Evans
      June 14, 2018

      Hi Linda,

      It so is about the transformational inner healing rather than just trying to heal with information.

      I’d love you to connect to my free resources and really get this started http://www.melanietoniaevans.com/freecourse

      Sending love, healing and blessings.

      Mel 🙏💕❤️

    • paulettecrosbourne@hotmail.com'
      Paulette Crosbourne
      June 15, 2018

      Anyone can answer a question for me

  • seahorsepeace@icloud.com'
    Jennifer
    June 14, 2018

    Amen! This must be my day. Thank you again for this video. Despite being divorced for almost two years I’ve struggled with this question, I made the decision to divorce regardless because I knew my health and well being were far too important than whether or not this was a narc or addict. I wouldn’t have had any trouble leaving the relationship on all levels and getting out of it had it not been for us having a young daughter together which is what made it that much more challenging. I thought, who am I to break up this family and force single parent life on my daughter when I don’t even know for sure if it is NPD or severe addictions (several of them) and the big spider web of issues that goes along with them. To this day I’ve asked myself this very question but I saw how even divorce and separation from the child he loves was not even enough to force him to get help. It took me cutting off my energy as much as humanly possible for my ex to seek therapy for the addictions. So thankful that I chose to do what was right for me and my daughter despite how hard it has been. So grateful for this video today!

    • Melanie Tonia Evans
      June 14, 2018

      Hi Jennifer,

      So glad this resonates with you.

      You are 100% correct what that person is is inconsequential. What is vital is living aligned with our True Life in order to generate it. Congratulations for letting go and honouring yourself.

      Dear Lady it is so important that our children don’t receive the conditioning that relationships with addicts are okay.

      You have totally done the right thing, you and her will be so much healthier for your choice.

      Mel 🙏💕❤️

    • paulettecrosbourne@hotmail.com'
      Paulette Crosbourne
      June 15, 2018

      Anyone can answer a question for me ?

  • Margarit72@aol.com'
    Jane
    June 14, 2018

    Mel,
    You explained it so beautifully ! I may forward this to others who are pondering this question.
    Thanks,
    Jane

  • cmarekmatejka@gmail.com'
    Wildflower
    June 14, 2018

    Omg Melanie, I’ve finally arrived! Took me 3 years after being forced to leave on threat of my life and losing everything, having to start my entire life over and hearing this message to work on myself and go extreme to no contact to get my head out of this concern! I’ve come so far with your and your teams steady help that I honestly don’t care anymore whether my ex partner is Narc or addict! Whatever the case, all of it destroyed me, my family, my life and soul to the point that I honestly just feel sick at the thought of getting even remotely near that merry go round again. I’m so so done. Even a whiff of this type of dysfunction coming from any other individuals makes me want to scream and run for the hills!

    I didn’t want to believe that it was over, that all my ex’s seemingly genuine efforts were a ruse to get me back, but bit by bit, by getting away and clearing all the fog that hampered my vision, I was able to see the truth for what it was. Now whenever I’m anywhere near my ex or any other toxic individuals I feel their vampiric energy straight away and I no longer allow that energy to confuse me, woo me prematurely or otherwise take me out!

    For anyone struggling with this, it is so so normal to want to hold onto hope. Keep healing. Put yourself first no matter how torn and confused you feel. Keep pushing thru it. Don’t give up on yourself. Challenge yourself everyday to embrace this mantra: The only person I can change and control is myself. Let time and space do it’s magic. Once the pain of loss and grief subsides you will see things for what they are and life will deepen with newfound joy, richness and meaning. It’s a long journey but so worth it. Leave your partners in the hands of the universe and be there for you. It is a process you will not regret.

    • Melanie Tonia Evans
      June 15, 2018

      Hi Wildflower,

      That is awesome that you have come so far!!

      How great that you no longer want to roll around with this.

      I love you mantra, empowering suggestions to everyone and your orientation.

      You are such a beautiful inspiration.

      Mel 🙏💕❤️

    • smalltowndrama@gmail.com'
      Tanya
      June 19, 2018

      So happy for you. I’m getting there and reading your post really helps. You’re an inspiration Wildflower!

  • stefycobain81@libero.it'
    HappySpirit
    June 14, 2018

    Thank you Mel, this is SO helpful! Anyway i also value Abraham Hicks’ perspective about addictions: people do not have to “label” themselves as addicts, “they are already perfect, they just use what they want at d moment to feel some relief in their journey towards who they really are and what they really want. by thinking they’re addicts they’re taking score too soon and they can not enjoy what they want and they feel guilty.”
    Obviously addictions can kill people but i think that also considering themselves as addicts can kill them because they’re So much more than that, they already have worthiness and guilt’s issues so they don’t need another negative label.

    Much Love as always*****

    • Melanie Tonia Evans
      June 15, 2018

      Hi Happy Spirit,

      You are so welcome!

      Thank you for sharing your thoughts 😀

      Mel 🙏💕❤️

  • bcuerden@gmail.com'
    Becca
    June 14, 2018

    I was married to an alcoholic when we were both 21. Of course I didn’t know that then. He was young, beautiful, smart, funny, and he stood to inherit family money. We had two kids straight way. By the time I was 25 my life had completely fallen apart. At that time, in the early 80’s, speaking about alcoholism in the family was taboo. Somehow I found Al-Anon, and after a short time I left him, then came back after a few months, then a year later told him to leave, get straight or that was it. He got straight for a few months, said all the right things, but it was on and off the wagon for years. I didn’t sleep for about 6 years. Anyhow- fast forward, after ten years of living on my own, and having gone to Al-Anon for years, with a sponsor and everything (my kids to Al-Ateen) I was working with a guy on contract for a few years and one thing and another (too ridiculously narc to have to tell here) I fell for him big time. Once we were living together (now in the mid-90″s) he exhibited all the behaviours of the alcoholic without any booze!! I could NOT for the life of me figure it out. I started going back to Al-Anon, thinking oh he’s a Workaholic- and I’ll work on my co-dependent behaviours.
    Fast forward another 15 years (!!!!!!) I did everything by myself- wiped out “codependency”- but no one could take his place as my “husband” – he was receiving all sorts of acclaim for his work, travelling the world etc etc and I was reduced to a dismissed shell of a human being.
    Long story short- at one point i typed into google (the Internet web2.0 saved my life) when is it time to leave? And for some reason I landed on a recover forum for partners of narcissists. It blew my mind! ALL of it, EVERYTHING about my life started to make sense.
    In 2012 I discovered Melanie and let me tell you- it is NEVER too late to reclaim your soul. Her narc recovery program finally addressed all the underlying issues. As partners of narcissists we take on SO much, trying to have a health relationship- we are placed in a codependent position again and again.
    We have to walk away completely.
    I’m now 62- my first young husband the alcoholic got clean- but he is still an asshole. Narc-alicious. I never see him, but hear about him from his brother very occasionally.
    My narc 2nd husband moved on straight away to a “nurse with a purse”. He had been having affairs for years.
    Finally- if you are working with Melanie’s programs, please stick with it – it may take only a few months, or a few years, but your life WILL change for the better. You will no longer be carrying a huge leaden burden around your heart. You CAN let it ALLL go.
    Thank you for this video Melanie. I am so grateful this information is out there because there are so many young people in this pro-narc culture that need to hear your message.

    • Melanie Tonia Evans
      June 15, 2018

      Oh wow Becca,

      What a journey you have been on.

      I salute you for your courage and your spirit to do the inner work and truly save your soul.

      Becca many would have given up, but you Dear Lady are a powerful and shining light who deserves all the greatest and best soul breakthroughs.

      I wish you every blessing.

      Mel 🙏💕❤️

  • paulettecrosbourne@hotmail.com'
    Candle light
    June 15, 2018

    Anyone can answer a question for me ?

    • smalltowndrama@gmail.com'
      Tanya
      June 19, 2018

      Candle light: I would suggest asking your question here and I’m sure Melanie or someone else could help.

  • mahoneyreport@aol.com'
    Jeannie
    June 16, 2018

    Melanie, thank you for the wonderful insight you offer into this dual phenomenon. My 15-month nightmare with narcissism was with a dominantly somatic narcissist, but one who also was an overpowering cerebral narcissist. He was both. I felt like we could’ve made the relationship work because our brains functioned compatibly well in many ways. Like many women with advanced education degrees and the benefits of good psychotherapy, I actually enjoyed a manageable degree of interactive and socialized companionship with him. His cerebral side genuinely enjoyed my ability to help him grow his business. We taught each other many great things about land development, in which he was an expert. He also loved how I introduced him to travel, foreign cultures, and good cuisine. Yes, we had a moderate amount of fun and good times. But I know exactly why I had to end it — it was because he had a tangential sexual addiction and compulsion that was fueled by his somatic narcissism. He was always handsome and physically well-built, sweet and charming all our lives (I knew him from childhood), but he was out of control as an adult. He was unfaithful almost the entire 15 months with me. It was during these periods of sexual compulsiveness that we had our knock-down, drag out fights because I refused to accept his lies and overall emotional abuse. Most of all, I rejected every effort he made to gaslight me (“I’m like this only in your mind. She’s just a friend, but now, because of your insane interrogations, I’m done”). I held him accountable even though he slithered away, lied himself into a corner and lied some more to get out of it. He flunked every kind of “talk” we had. It was a waste of time and it always ended with him “disappearing” for 5-7 days at a time, a critical narcissistic move to find a new thrill somewhere else. He’d come back in a fog, as if he simply couldn’t remember where he’d been. Then after a few hours, he would return to his hard-working, intelligent self, coupled with the sweetness that I remembered from childhood.

    And so Melanie, after living this insane way for 15 months, I learned enough from your Quantum Healing program, and woke up one day with the much needed “shift” to go NO CONTACT. It’s been over a year now. And though I miss the so-called “good” moments with him, I definitely prefer this place I’m in. Thanks for the video!

    • Melanie Tonia Evans
      June 16, 2018

      Wow Jeannie,

      You have done such an incredible job of pulling away from such a powerful cocktail of attraction.

      You should be so so proud of yourself that you have put your soul first.

      That is powerful and self honouring and from where in life all the amazing rewards emerge.

      Sending love and blessings to you.

      Mel 🙏💕❤️

  • Melee3@man.com'
    Melissa Lee
    June 16, 2018

    I’m so looking forward to listening to this. This is a question I have been asking myself until recently when I just decided that narcissism is the core issue. I’m glad to say I believe I am free of this relationship, finally; it took three years to let go, but I have to say it may have taken me years longer to break free had I not found Melanie Tonia Evans’ videos. So much of the confusion cleared up for me. Knowledge is power, but perhaps even more powerful is Melanie’s honesty and loving approach and presence. She makes you feel as if you are no longer alone. That is a tremendous gift when you are devastated and isolated by an adult-to-adult narcissistic abuse. Thank you, Mel.

    • Melanie Tonia Evans
      June 16, 2018

      Awwww Melissa,

      I am so pleased I could help hold your heart darling lady!

      Wishing you so many continued blessings.

      Mel 🙏💕❤️

  • cmarekmatejka@gmail.com'
    Wildflower
    June 29, 2018

    This is all so interesting as I had such an avesion to spiritual narcissism right from childhood. I grew uo in a fundamental Baptist church and saw right thru the self-righteous crap! I thought so much of the community’s judgmental behavior went against the fundamental teachings of Christ and I eventually ultimately rejected my faith and became an Atheist for a time until I saw thru my ex’s need for control and dominance in this area as well. Leaving my ex and all the other abusers and falling away from everything I had previously known opened up a space to experience a profound new way of relating to and experiencing spirituality, thanks in part to Melanie here and also thru another Melanie who practises NLP!! Life should feel calm, grounded and syncronous. I take my time when meeting people now. I pay attention to anything that seems too good to be true or anything that has an infectious allure as it usually is a sign that my soul and inner child need something that only I can give her! Peace 💗

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