When An Empathetic Person Loves A Narcissist

Unsplash João Silas
Unsplash João Silas

You were intensely charming, confident and passionate about your career and upfront about your struggles and flaws. You told me I was special. You knew what you wanted in a “life partner” and we clicked better than you had with anyone before.

You left a trail of broken hearts behind you but I was going to be different. You showered me with attention, thoughtful gifts, and an abundance of compliments. I felt so special that you had chosen me out of all the girls in your dating pool. Now I wonder if I was just the only one that was willing to work through your insecurities with you.

Everything was fast. Within weeks of meeting each other, I told you more about myself than I had ever told my closest friends and family. I finally felt like someone understood me and accepted all of me. Then it got tough and you left. And you put all of the blame, guilt, and shame back on me.

Sometimes my compassion is so bottomless that I feel everything too deeply. But caring too much is not a flaw. It’s a gift. And you lost out on that when you let me go.

But here’s what people don’t know about you: you are so unbelievably insecure in your own skin. Where others see a big ego, I see internal pain and low self-esteem. When people really love each other, they discover each other’s weaknesses and flaws and insecurities and accept them. And so I listened to you talk about your childhood and how that shaped you into the person you are today. I began to understand why you got easily frustrated with people and why you didn’t have the capacity to understand that one person’s baggage shouldn’t be measured against another’s.

You loved the idea of me. You loved how I made you feel. You loved the fantasy of what we could be. You liked that I admired you, I validated you, I understood you, I stroked your ego. But you did not love me. Even though I should hate you for everything you said and did in those last twenty hours, I can’t do it. Because I loved the way you made me feel and I too loved getting lost in the fantasy of us. And I lied to myself about the reasons why we didn’t work and, in turn, lied to you.

I longed for deep companionship, for that person that loved and accepted all of me. We wanted to be each other’s “person” because we had a lot of empty space to fill. I lost myself in you and failed to stand in my truth. I internalized everything I was feeling for fear that I would lose you if I was honest, bottling it up until it was just enough to explode spectacularly in front of our eyes.

I can’t let you go because letting go of you is letting go of the memories we made together and the way you made me feel. I feel like I learned a lot from you and I hope I gave you something back in return. I hope I taught you how to have a little more compassion and patience for people. I hope you learned to not let your insecurities overtake all of those amazing qualities that make you you.

I truly believe I got a different you than the rest of the world did and, while that sometimes makes me feel like you manipulated me, I feel lucky to have gotten to spend time with that person. I hope you find someone who is empathetic enough to understand you and worth working through the tough times with. And I know there’s someone who will accept all of me. I guess it’s just not you.  Thought Catalog Logo Mark

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