You Might Have to Change Friends
I have a client who is successfully navigating a healthy relationship with a man for the first time in her 46 years! Her work on herself is wondrous. She has healed a scarily abusive childhood, healed very damaged self-esteem and most recently lost over 80 pounds. In chatting with her today, she commented that she is a “bit narcissistic”. When we discussed what she meant by that, I realized she was really talking about self care.
I am not a therapist and I’m not going to look for a definition of narcissism that a therapist might use. I’m going to define narcissism to be what I understand from my therapist friends. As far as I understand narcissism is pretty much not being able to see beyond your own belly button. It’s all about you. You are never wrong. All roads lead to you.
This is very different than being a person who observes their behavior and wants to see where and whether she is acting from self love.
If she is truly taking care of herself – most particularly when she has never really had a good relationship with a partner in her whole life and wants some very positive change, then deep, thoughtful, very observant self care is vital. That is not narcissism. That is not whatever else others have accused you of when you wanted to take care of yourself.
You were with the wrong people. People who truly love you, want and celebrate for you as you care for yourself. That means they support you having boundaries. That means they want you to express yourself authentically. They love you. Find and hang out with only those people.