Brainwash, Browbeat, Bully, Repeat
A Brief Guide to Traumatic Narcissism
A hallmark sequence of behaviors perpetrated by an abusive narcissist in a romantic partnership includes grooming/idealizing (aka love bombing), devaluing, and finally discarding. These behaviors are integral to the conditioning that manifests in a codependent relationship. Consequently, a trauma bond develops between the perpetrator and the victim, which keeps them together despite the obvious or not-so-obvious dysfunction.
The codependent empath needs to feel needed and the codependent narcissist needs the emotional supply (aka narcissistic supply) in the way of attention and adoration from the empath. But just because the relationship is codependent does not mean that it is commensal (where one benefits) or mutualistic (where both benefit). The narcissistic relationship is parasitic because the narcissist takes and the empath gives at the expense and detriment of the empath. This is why the relationship between the narcissist and the empath is unhealthy and toxic.
Empathic individuals and empaths, in particular, are susceptible to idealization and grooming. They are also inclined to forget the devaluing they were subjected to by their narcissistic partner. So the relationship persists.
When a child is born into a narcissistic family system and is designated as the scapegoat, he or she is much more vulnerable than an adult and has no reference for comparison. Hence, they internalize the emotional abuse and ultimately abuse themselves. These victims become their worst critics.
Adult children of narcissists are particularly susceptible to grooming and idealization by others, but it is the early subjugation by a domineering parent that leaves them not only emotionally wounded but truly brainwashed. And this brainwashing affects their self-esteem as much as it distorts their beliefs about and perceptions of other people.
sub·ju·ga·tion: [T]he action of bringing someone or something under domination or control.
To exert power and control the narcissistic parent may brainwash, browbeat and bully independently or in concert. This is the experience of the scapegoat child.
brain·wash: [to] make (someone) adopt radically different beliefs by using systematic and often forcible pressure.
brow·beat: [to] intimidate (someone), typically into doing something, with stern or abusive words.
bul·ly: [to] seek to harm, intimidate, or coerce (someone perceived as vulnerable).
Related Resources on the Drop-in Social Audio App Clubhouse.com:
Scapegoat Strength https://www.clubhouse.com/scapegoatstrength
Rise Like a Phoenix https://www.clubhouse.com/club/rise-like-a-phoenix
Hacking Narcissism https://www.clubhouse.com/club/hacking-narcissism
Effects of Brainwashing on Narcissistic Victims and Survivors (Randi Fine)