What is post-narcissistic stress syndrome?

Similar to PTSD (post-traumatic stress disorder), people who have already shared their life with a narcissist can go through similar events to symptoms of PTSD. Maybe we should call it PHN or post-narcissistic stress disorder.

Post-traumatic stress disorder develops after experiencing an event or action that causes intense fear, misunderstanding, helplessness, or horror.

Although it is common to have a period of adjustment to recover from a break with a narcissist, for many these difficult adaptation periods can continue for a while. With time, adjusting the behavior, forget the narcissist and make narcissism to narcissistic and take care of you, such traumatic reactions improve and disappear completely.

Everything can trigger an SSPN … even things as simple as the smell of its perfume on a foreigner who passes, a song that goes on the radio, even some foods. No matter what brings you back to this terrifying nightmare .. you are referred to a moment in your life that was disruptive mentally and emotionally. These identifiers are called “triggers”.


1) intrusive memories of the narcissist: these may be memories that have had a sudden onset caused by a “trigger”, or memories that are continuous and persistent

2) emotional avoidance and numbness

3) anxiety and increased emotional volatility

Symptoms of intrusive memories of the narcissist may include:

Flashbacks of their narcissistic anger, images of intense rage or relive the traumatic event for several minutes or even days.

Suddenly challenge your own mental stability due to months / years of abuse and / or gaslighting trying to perform daily tasks or in relation to others.

Dramatic dreams about the narcissistic event.

Difficulties to readjust your self-esteem and feel good in social situations resulting from months / years of emotional, mental, verbal and often physical abuse.

Symptoms of emotional avoidance and numbness may include:

Avoid social situations, activities, people or relationships that you liked

Trying to avoid thinking or talking about the narcissist

Feeling emotionally numb to life and love

Addiction or abuse of sleeping pills

Difficulty concentrating or performing simple actions

Take this distance

Difficulties in establishing new relationships or maintaining relationships

Cocooning or hiding

Despair about the future or feelings of defeat

Symptoms of anxiety and increased emotional volatility may include:

Irritability, rage, or anger

Self-doubt and loss of self-confidence

Guilt or overwhelming shame, self-blame or Stockholm syndrome

Self-destructive behavior, such as having a short-term relationship, drinking too much, not eating properly, quitting or taking drugs

Sleeping troubles

Panic attacks / crying attacks

Be easily scared, nervous and hyper vigilant

Paranoia or imagine the worst scenarios

Ask others about their intentions, especially with new partners

Relive narcissistic arguments or anger in your head

The narcissistic experience can haunt you for a long time. It can interfere with your daily life and your activities, and invade you anytime.

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