Non-Fatal Strangulation Is A Predictor Of Femicide

Non-Fatal Strangulation Is A Predictor Of Femicide

Non-fatal strangulation in intimate partner violence is a powerful predictor of femicide, the main cause of premature death for women globally. A woman who has been targeted for non-fatal strangulation by a partner or family member is 750% more like to be killed by the same perpetrator.

Non-Fatal Strangulation Is A Gendered Crime

Non-fatal strangulation, also known as non-fatal asphyxiation, affects 10 times as many women as men, making it a gendered form of domestic violence. It occurs in 45% of attempted femicides.

Non-fatal strangulation and stalking are considered two of the most serious red flags of escalating aggression that can lead to femicide.

“It actually takes about 7 seconds occlusion of the blood vessels to make someone unconscious,” Gail Starr, clinical coordinator for Albuquerque Sexual Assault Nurse Examiners (SANE).

Healthcare Workers Can Be A Lifeline For Victim-Survivors

Informed healthcare professional are often the only hope for women targeted for non-fatal strangulation by current and former intimate partner or family members. It is often overlooked as victim-survivors are often too terrified and disoriented to report the violence they are experiencing at the hands of their partners and family members.

Traces of non-fatal strangulation are only discernible in 50% of the cases. Therefore, learning to identify the signs of non-fatal strangulation is crucial in femicide prevention.

Some physical signs of non-fatal strangulation are:

  • Loss of consciousness
  • Difficulty breathing
  • Difficulty swallowing
  • Brain damage
  • Hoarse voice
  • Paralysis
  • Motor and speech disorders
  • Stroke
  • Bladder or bowel incontinence 
  • Dizziness
  • Memory loss
  • Tinnitus
  • Seeing dark spots
  • Tunnel vision
  • Memory loss

Non-fatal strangulation can lead to strokse as there is a risk of blood clots forming in the artery. The strokes can occur days or weeks after the act of violence occurred.

Some psychological signs of non-fatal strangulation include:

  • Post-traumatic stress (PTSD)
  • Depression
  • Suicidality
  • Dissociation
  • Compliance
  • Amnesia

Legislation Against Non-Fatal Strangulation

So far non-fatal strangulation has been criminalized in England and Wales, where it carries a sentence of up to 7 years in prison.


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Police Find ‘Blood’ Stains On 2 Items At Bryan Kohberger’s Home

'Blood' Stains Found At Home of Idaho Murder Suspect Bryan Kohberger

UNSEALED COURT DOCUMENTS reveal that police recovered two ‘blood’ stained items at the home of murder suspect Bryan Kohberger.

The documents were unsealed on January 17 and outline what kind of evidence law enforcement was looking to find at Mr. Kohberger’s home in connection with the quadruple homicide of four University of Idaho students: Kaylee GonçalvesMadison MogenXana Kernodle, and Ethan Chapin.

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What Police Found At Murder Suspect Bryan Kohberger’s Home

The return of service search warrant shows the investigators seized the following items when they searched Mr. Kohberger’s residence and a storage unit in December 2022:

  • One nitrite type black glove
  • 1 Walmart receipt with one Dickies tag
  • 2 Marshalls receipts
  • Dust container from Bissell Power Force vacuum
  • 8 possible hair strands
  • 1 ‘Fire TV’ stick with cord/plug
  • 1 possible animal hair strand
  • 1 possible hair
  • 1 possible hair
  • 1 possible hair
  • 1 possible hair strand
  • 1 computer tower
  • 1 collection of dark red spot (collected without testing)
  • 2 cuttings from uncased pillow of reddish/brown stain (larger stain tested)
  • 2 top and bottom of mattress cover packaged separately both labeled multiple stains(one tested)

The warrant reveals that phenolphthalein tests were used to determine if the stains on the uncased pillow and mattress cover were from blood. While the tests found that the items had blood stains on them, false positives occur. Furthermore, the provenance of the blood and species of its source remain unknown.

More Testing Is Needed

The suspected hair and an animal fur will be tested to see if they are a genetic match to the murder victims, other residents at the 1122 King Road, and Ms. Gonçalves dog respectively.

More tests will be conducted to determine if the items were stained with blood from any of the murder victims. It is unknown whether investigators believe that the suspect kept the items as trophies from the brutal attacks on the students.

Why Is Bryan Kohberger A Suspect?

DNA evidence found on the sheath of what is believed to be the murder weapon next to two of the victims was found to be a 99% match for Mr. Kohberger. A car matching the description for the white Hyundai Elantra owned by Mr. Kohberger was also seen in the environs of the student’s off-campus residence. Evidence from his mobile found also shows that he stalked the victims residence more than twelve times before the fatal attacks. Investigators also found the Mr. Kohberger was following the three female victims on Instagram and attempted to contact one of them via direct message in October 2022, suggesting that the murders at 1122 King Road were femicides.

Retired FBI Special Agent Jennifer Coffindaffer characterized Mr. Kohberger as a narcissist and believes that he will eventually come clean, “I think he’ll talk […] he wants to explain, he wants that attention, he’s a narcissist, he wants to be the smartest guy in the room.”

Mr. Kohberger was arrested on December 30, 2022. His next hearing is set for June 26, 2023. If he is found guilty, he will face the death penalty.

Unsealed Search Warrant

Read the full unsealed search warrant below:

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Bryan Kohberger Allegedly Told Neighbor, ‘It Was A Crime Of Passion’

Bryan Kohberger Allegedly Told Neighbor, 'It Was A Crime Of Passion'

A neighbor of Bryan Kohberger, the prime suspect in the Moscow murders, has opened up about comments allegedly made the day after the tragedy.

According to CBS Evening News, Kohberger allegedly spoke to his neighbor about the fatal attacks on November 14, 2022. In an interview with Nora O’Donnell, the neighbor, who wishes to remain anonymous, gave the following account: “He brought it up in conversation and asked if I’d heard about the murders which I did. Then he said, ‘yeah, it seems like they have no leads. It seems like it was a crime of passion.'”

A Possible Motive For The Crime?

Mr. Kohberger’s neighbor seems to believe that his comments may be indicative of a possible motive for the fatal attacks on Kaylee Gonçalves, Madison Mogen, Xana Kernodle, and Ethan Chapin in November 2022.

They added, “At the time of our conversation, it was only a few days after it had happened, so there weren’t many details out.”

Mr. Kohberger, a 28-year-old Ph.D. student, was arrested on December 30, 2022, and charged with first degree murder in connection with the quadruple homicide.

What Is The Significance of The Alleged Remarks?

A crime of passion is a legal concept that refers to impulsive illegal acts driven by an extreme emotional response to provocation. In the context of gender-based violence, crimes of passion are an expression of narcissistic rage.

The day after the attack on November 14, 2022, Moscow Mayor Art Bettge described the attack as a crime of passion, telling the New York Times, “With a crime of this magnitude, it’s very difficult to work through. The overall assessment is that it’s a crime of passion.”

Within twenty-four hours of the tragedy, the crime of passion narrative spread throughout the news media. Therefore, it is possible that Mr. Kohberger was simply echoing Mayor Bettge’s remarks.

New details have emerged showing that Mr. Kohberger was following the three female victims on Instagram prior to the murders. According to the court records, he allegedly stalked the women for five months behavior prior to the incident. If convicted, he will face the death penalty. His next hearing is on June 26, 2023.

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What Is A Crime of Passion?

What Is A Crime Of Passion? The Mental Health Defense In Criminal Law

CRIME OF PASSION is a legal concept that describes illegal acts driven by an extreme emotional response to provocation. Crimes of this nature are neither calculated nor are they premeditated.

The term crime of passion comes from the French crime passionnel. As a defense, it falls under the umbrella of temporary insanity. It is also known as the mental disorder defense as it is associated with impaired emotional regulation.

What Causes People To Commit Crimes of Passion?

People who commit crimes of passion are said to be driven by an instinct so strong that it eclipses their ability to reason. These type of crimes are thought of as an automatic reflection to an imminent threat.

The underlying motivation for most crimes of passion is self-defense. But they can also occur while protecting others.

A Legal Loophole For Batterers

Unfortunately, the crime of passion defense can create legal loopholes for perpetrators of domestic violence. It is particularly forgiving of criminals who are prone to micro-psychotic episodes, a feature of some personality disorders.

The legal system sometimes conflates egoistic micro-psychosis with the human survival instinct , when they are two separate things. The American Psychological Association defines micro-psychosis as, “psychotic episodes of very brief duration (minutes to hours) that occur during times of stress.”

Crimes of passion driven by excessive narcissism tend to be expressions of entitlement to exert control over another. The provocation for these crimes is usually non-compliance by the other person. But, they can also be brought on by warped ideas like, “If I can’t have you, no one can.”

There are marked differences between say, a parent committing an act of violence to protect their child and a person’s whose narcissism escalates to such an extreme that they kill their intimate partner to stop them leaving the relationship.

Research shows batterers heart rates drop during their violent outbursts. In other words, someone driven to commit violence acts due to their excessive narcissism would not not experiencing stress in the way that someone acting from a survival instinct would. A narcissistic person may not be experiencing any stress at all as their assertion of dominance would give them a sense of relief.

Crimes Of Passion In The Context of Gender-Based Violence

The crime of passion defense is often used to uphold the double standard applied to gender-based crimes.

Historically, the legal system objectified women. It held that women were chattel. Therefore they were the legal property of men, such as their fathers, grandfathers, uncles, brothers, and husbands. 

Men were free to do as they pleased with their property. For this reason, the law and society at large looked the other way in cases of domestic violence, sexual assault, and femicide because of the belief that women were objects and men were free to do as they pleased with their property.

Moreover, the rhetoric associated with the crime of passion defense invariably places responsibility for men’s violence on women. The ideology is manifest in phrases like:

  • (S)he was asking for it.
  • It takes two to tango 
  • (S)he made me do it.

The concept of women as property lives on in traditions in practice today. For example, a father giving away his daughter to the groom at her wedding represents the exchange of property from one man to another.

The lack of awareness about the realities of intimate partner violence lead to terrible injustices, as in the case of Ruth Williams, who was killed by her husband in 2021. He was found not guilty of her murder as he used the crime of passion defense and blamed the stress of the coronavirus pandemic for his aggression.


The crime of passion defense exists to safeguard person’s right to protect themselves and the others. However, it can be exploited by predatory individuals to escape being held to account for heinous crimes committed solely to feed their egos.

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Was It Femicide? Bryan Kohberger Followed The 3 Women On Instagram

Was It Femicide? Bryan Kohberger Followed The 3 Women On Instagram

Bryan Kohberger allegedly followed Kaylee Gonçalves, Madison Mogen, and Xana Kernodle on social media prior to the fatal attack at King Road in Moscow, Idaho.

* Trigger Warning: This article discusses violent crimes. 

Per People, the murder suspect followed the three women on Instagram and reached out to one of them via direct message in October 2022.

“He slid into one of the girls’ DMs several times but she didn’t respond,” explains the source, “Basically it was just him saying, ‘Hey, how are you?’ But he did it again and again.”

Undeterred By No Response

The source did not reveal which one of the victims Mr. Kohberger was attempting to connect with. However, they revealed that Mr. Kohberger was undeterred by the fact that the woman did not respond to his messages and continued to reach out to her.

According to the source, “She may not have seen [his messages], because they went into message requests. We’re still trying to determine how aware the victims were of his existence. There’s no indication that he was getting frustrated with her lack of response, but he was definitely persistent.”

Apart from the direct messages, the suspect sent to one of the women, he did not interact with their social media accounts in the public sphere.

Was It Femicide? Kohberger Only Followed The Women

Mr. Kohberger was not following the forth victim, Ethan Chapin. His alleged focus on the female victims of the Moscow murders begs the question: was it femicide?

The term femicide was first conceptualized by Dr. Diana Russell in 1976 to describe the “killing of females by males because they are females.”

According to Jennifer Coffindaffer, a former FBI agent, the attack at King Road was a mass femicide and Mr. Chapin was collateral damage. She believes that the aggression was triggered by rejection, explaining that the killer is likely someone, “who’s never been able to be accepted in the types of group that Kaylee and Maddie were.”

Ms. Coffindaffer believes that Bryan Kohberger suffers from extreme narcissism and it will eventually lead him to confess, “The reason I think he’ll talk is he wants to explain, he wants that attention, he’s a narcissist, he wants to be the smartest guy in the room.”

The Women Were The Focus Of His Alleged Stalking

An alleged pattern of stalking behavior emerged in data obtained from the suspect’s mobile phone that showed he was near the victims’ residence at least 12 times between June 2022 and November 13, 2022.

One of the victim’s fathers, Steve Gonçalves revealed that the suspect has been orbiting around the women. While he did not get into the specifics, Mr. Gonçalves said, “He was stalking them, he was hunting them. He was a person looking for an opportunity and it just happened to be in that house.”

Ms. Gonçalves, Ms. Mogen, Ms. Kernodle, and Mr. Chapin, were killed in a brutal knife attack on November 13, 2022 at their off-campus residence near the University of Idaho. Mr. Kohberger, a 28-year-old Ph.D. student, was arrested on December 30, 2022, and charged with first degree murder in connection with their deaths

The Gonçalves family are seeking the death penalty. His next hearing is on June 26, 2023.

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Flying Monkey Narcissist Meaning

Flying Monkey Narcissist Meaning

FLYING MONKEY is a term used that generally describes someone who, knowingly or unknowingly, enables the destructive behavior of another. It is commonly used in the context of narcissistic abuse in reference to people in the manipulator’s social circle who make it possible for them harm others without being held to account.

Flying Monkey Meaning

Flying monkey (noun): a person who is an abuse enabler. They makes it possible for one person to harm another by making excuses for them or acting on their behalf. They encourage perpetrators of abuse and shield them from the consequences of their behavior.

Synonym: enabler, hatchet man.

Flying Monkey Narcissist Meaning

Flying monkey narcissist (noun): is a term used to describe a narcissistic person who takes on the flying monkey role. Narcissism is a trait that exists on a continuum, and it is something all people have to a greater or lesser degree. Narcissistic abusers are skilled at appealing to narcissism in others as a means to recruiting them into their cause.

Example sentences

  • Rose McGowan says Harvey Weinstein did not respond to her accusations directly. She alleges that he had his flying monkeys Lisa Bloom and David Boies hire Black Cube to undermine the publication of her book.
  • Most people don’t realize it but in the film ‘Mean Girls,’ Cady Heron was Janice Ian’s flying monkey.
  • My youngest brother Chuck said he had my back but it turns out that he was our older brother Drake’s flying monkey.

Signs of Flying Monkey Behavior

Here are some behaviors commonly seen in flying monkeys:

  • Turning a blind eye – Flying monkeys ignore the narcissistic person’s aggression.
  • Vouching for the narcissist – Flying monkeys excuse and justify the narcissist’s behavior. If the narcissist commits a crime, the flying monkey provides them with a false alibi.
  • Smearing the recipient of the abuse – Flying monkeys participate in character assignation. They echo the narcissist’s talking points without verifying it. They don’t bother to seek out the recipient of the abuse and listen to their side of the story. Flying monkeys are instrumental in narcissistic scapegoating, i.e. DARVO.
  • Data mining – Flying monkeys often act as spies for the narcissist. A common tactic they use is pretending to be a friend to the recipient of the abuse only to pump them for information and report back to the chief abuser.
  • Acting as the narcissist’s emissary – Flying monkeys can also take on the role of the narcissistic person’s proxy, acting as their ambassador to carry messages to the recipient of the abuse. They may also negotiate or aggress on the narcissist’s behalf.

Further Reading

Understanding Narcissistic Abuse by Lana Levin.

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Flying Monkey Destroyed

Flying Monkey Destroyed

IN THE CONTEXT of narcissistic abuse, flying monkeys perpetrate secondary victimization on the targeted person. This article revisits their origin story to answer the question, “How is a flying monkey destroyed?”

What are Flying Monkeys?

Flying monkeys are aggressive enablers, who shield the narcissist from being held to account. During the love bombing phase of the cycle of narcissistic abuse, they support the narcissist by lending them credibility. They are also active in devaluation and discard phases of the abuse cycle, acting as informants, lieutenants, character assassins, and enforcers of the narcissistic person’s agenda.

The Flying Monkey Origin Story

The concept of flying monkeys comes from the L. Frank Baum children’s novel, ‘The Wonderful Wizard of Oz.’ It tells the story of Dorothy Gale’s dramatic foray into the enchanted fairyland. A tornado causes her house to land on Nessarose, the Wicked Wicked of the East. As the Winkies rejoice over the demise of their oppressor, Elphaba, the Wicked Witch of the West, appears to claim her late sister’s magical ruby slippers to consolidate her dominance in the realm. However, in an unexpected turn of events, Glinda, the Good Witch of the North, intervenes and casts a spell placing the coveted shoes on Dorothy’s feet. Thus begins Elphaba’s vendetta against Dorothy in the Ozian saga.

In her effort to retrieve the ruby slippers and become omnipotent, Elphaba commands her army of flying monkeys to terrorize Dorothy and thwart her from achieving her goals. The Wicked Witch of the West used the flying monkeys to abuse Dorothy by proxy. In the real-world, enablers of narcissistic abuse exist within a similar power dynamic. For this reason that author Sam Vaknin borrowed the term flying monkey to describe them.

What Caused Elphaba To Attack Dorothy Gale?

Before we consider Baum’s idea of how the flying monkey is destroyed, it might be helpful to recognize why the Elphaba sent the flying monkeys after Dorothy in the first place. The Wicked Witch of the West saw Dorothy as a threat to her identity and status. Dorothy’s kindness and empathy made her a preferable steward of power to Elphaba who was notoriously dictatorial.

When Glinda rewarded Dorothy with the coveted ruby slippers, Elphaba experienced a narcissistic injury and set her mind to sabotaging Dorothy’s rise to power. From Elphaba’s point of view, bringing Dorothy down was as an act of self-preservation. As is the case with most narcissistic people, Elphaba was frightened of her rival.

Like Dorothy, many people who experience narcissistic abuse do not see their own power and are oblivious to the fact that highly narcissistic people feel threatened by them on some level despite their posturing and bravado. Fear is one of the driving forces of the narcissist’s effort to exert control over them.

Why Are Flying Monkey’s Loyal To Narcissists?

According to Baum, the actions of flying monkeys are not necessarily personal. They are obedient to whoever is the power holder within their hierarchy.

Baum wrote that flying monkeys recognized a magical Golden Cap as the ultimate symbol of power. In the ‘Hidden History of Oz: An Introduction to Oz Before Dorothy,’ author Tarl Telford reveals that Baum’s notes detail the cap was created by Gayelette, an enchantress at the Ruby Palace. Whoever wore the Golden Cap had command of the Flying Monkeys and could ask them to do their bidding, whether for good or for ill.

Victim-survivors often describe secondary-victimization as more painful than the first instance of narcissistic abuse. It’s hard to make sense of the flying monkeys aggression when you have done them no harm. It can be helpful to recognize that their behavior is not about you, it is about their survival within their social circle.

Learn More About Flying Monkeys

How Is A Flying Monkey Destroyed?

Returning to ‘The Wizard of Oz,’ Baum wrote, “Dorothy went to the Witch’s cupboard to fill her basket with food for the journey, and there she saw the Golden Cap. She tried it on her own head and found that it fitted her exactly.”

In other words, Dorothy was destined to hold power. In the first instance, she is given the charmed ruby slippers by Glinda and in the second instance she unwittingly takes it by pilfering Elphaba’s Golden Cap which fits her as if it was made for her.

However, Dorothy does not realize the cap’s power until she is made aware of it by the Queen of Mice. Once Dorothy learns the secret of the Golden Cap, she realizes she has the power to command the army of flying monkeys and their attacks cease. In a surprising turn of events, once Dorothy realizes her power, the flying monkeys carry her to Emerald City and where she is made a Princess of Oz by Ozma, Queen of the Realm.

The moral of Baum’s story is that the solutions to our problems often exist within us. Dorothy was an ordinary person who prevailed in a power struggle with the most fearsome character in Oz. She accomplished this by using her tactical skills to build a social circle of her own. Through her good nature and building connections with others, Dorothy successfully realized her full potential in spite of the Elphaba’s aggression. Moreover, by courageously realizing coming in to her own power, the flying monkeys chased their allegiance and served her.


Flying monkeys may be on a mission is to bring you down but your power lies in your choices. For example, you can see them for what they are and remember that their aggression is not about you.

Dorothy did not waste time or energy trying to convince the flying monkeys that they had a terrible master. Instead of fighting them, she invested her effort with people who believed in her. She did not allow attacks from the narcissist or the flying monkeys to sway her from her goals. Dorothy stayed close to people who cared for her and continued building friendships with people who wanted to see her shine.

As U.S. president Abraham Lincoln famously said, “Do I not destroy my enemies when I make them my friends?”

Flying monkeys may not ever be your friends but are destroyed the moment the person they target realizes their own agency. Remember, they submit to whoever wears the Golden Cap. Dorothy didn’t seek sympathy or vindication from the flying monkeys, instead she seized power and fulfilled her destiny. Walking in purpose, setting goals, staying productive, and adding value to relationships are the components of a real-world Golden Cap.

Further reading

Flying Monkey Quotes

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Understanding Narcissistic Abuse Trauma And Its Impact

Narcissistic Abuse Trauma

NARCISSISTIC ABUSE TRAUMA can cause immense damage to the mental and emotional well-being of victim-survivors. People who have experienced narcissistic abuse frequently suffer from profound feelings of anxiety, depression, isolation, and worthlessness.

What is Narcissistic Abuse?

Narcissistic abuse is a harmful form of emotional regulation in which one person seeks to subjugate another through deception, manipulation, aggression, and exploitation.

What is Narcissistic Abuse Trauma?

Narcissistic abuse trauma is the erasure of a person’s sense of self through repeated boundary violations and coercion.

Some symptoms of narcissistic abuse trauma are:

  • Grief
  • Low self-esteem
  • Loss of self-trust
  • Rumination
  • Distorted self-image
  • Intrusive thoughts
  • Depression
  • Anxiety
  • Withdrawal
  • Flashbacks
  • Hypervigilance
  • Panic attacks
  • Dissociation
  • Nightmares

The Emotional Pain of Narcissistic Abuse

Narcissistic people resolve deep-seated feelings of insecurity and doubt by projecting the qualities they dislike in themselves on to other people. They see the world through a binary lens of absolutes, so people and things are either good or bad with no space for plurality.

For this reason, narcissistic people is compelled to see themselves as all good. Therefore anything they deem bad must be externalized and projected on to an external object. For example, if a narcissistic person is caught cheating, they blame the partner for “making’ them cheat by not meeting their standards.

Narcissists use scapegoating as a defense tactic. The victim-survivor is objectified and made to shoulder the burden of the narcissistic person’s externalized self-loathing and are summarily punished. The more shame the narcissistic person feels, the more vicious and prolonged the penalty will be. They frequently use a defense tactic called D.A.R.V.O. (Deny, Attack, Reverse, Victim and Offender) to shift blame for their errors onto the victim-survivor.

Being punished for something they did not do is confusing and terrifying for victim-survivors. The narcissistic person’s erratic and cruel outbursts often leave their partner in a state of unrelenting anxiety that is often described as “walking on eggshells.” It is a paradigm that echoes throughout most narcissistic abuse stories.

How does it impact victim-survivors?

The chronic stress associated with narcissistic abuse trauma can lead to a host of adverse health outcomes for survivors of narcissistic abuse. The imminent dangers of exposure to pathological narcissism are seldom discussed. For this reason it is important to continue educating others about narcissistic abuse so that people understand that the violence in these relationships can cause lasting damage to the victim-survivor’s physical, behavioral, and psycho-emotional health as well as their financial stability.

Tips For Recovery

If you are experiencing narcissistic abuse trauma, here are some steps you can take toward recovery.

  • Reach out to a domestic violence hotline in you area.
  • Work with a domestic violence advocate to formulate a safety plan.
  • Seek support from a licensed mental health professional specialized in pathological narcissism.
  • Work on ways to end the narcissistic relationship while ensuring your safety.
  • Consider trauma recovery support for goal setting and accountability.

Breaking the silence on abuse with a psychologically safe person and growing in awareness are important steps in trauma recovery. Trauma recovery coaching excellent compliment to rebuilding your life after narcissistic abuse.

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The Long-Term Consequences of Narcissistic Abuse

OVER THE LONG-TERM narcissistic abuse can lead to a range of adverse health outcomes for victim-survivors, including mental health conditions and stress related diseases.

The long-term consequences of narcissistic abuse can manifest as:

  • Physical
  • Behavioral
  • Psycho-emotional
  • Financial

What is narcissistic abuse?

Narcissistic abuse is a maladaptive form of emotional regulation used by one person to subjugate another. It is a kind of psycho-emotional abuse that is motivated by one person’s desire to dominate, control, manipulate, and exploit others to affirm their sense of superiority.

It can take the form of verbal abuse, manipulation, intimidation. It can also lead to the loss of friends and loved ones for the victim-survivor through isolation. Narcissistic abuse can happen in any relationship, including intimate partnerships, friendships, and families.

Physical effects of narcissistic abuse

In the presence of a threat the brain’s hypothalamus sets off system of defenses in the body to combat stress. The adrenal glands spring to action, secreting adrenaline and cortisol, sending the organism into survival mode responses, i.e. fight, flight, freeze, or fawn.

Survival mode is meant to last for a short time, until the person is able to get to safety. However, people experiencing narcissistic abuse remain in survival mode for sustained periods of time. The long-term effects of raised adrenaline and cortisol can have adverse health consequences as increased adrenaline and cortisol leads to elevated heart rate, blood pressure, and blood glucose levels.

Some of the health conditions chronic narcissistic abuse can lead to are:

  • Cardio-vascular disease
  • Obesity
  • Arthritis
  • High blood pressure
  • Type II Diabetes
  • Substance dependency
  • Behavioral addictions

Psycho-emotional effects of narcissistic abuse

Exposure to extreme narcissism can lead to the erasure of victim-survivors’ identity, which can negatively impact their psycho-emotional functioning. Manipulation, coercion, and repeated boundary violations leave the recipient of the abuse forever circling back and forth through fight, flight, freeze, or fawn responses.

The victim-survivor’s prolonged grief of the inner-self can lead to mental health conditions like:

  • Major depressive disorder
  • Generalized anxiety disorder
  • Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)

What are the consequences of narcissistic abuse on behavior?

Narcissistic abuse can cause significant changes in a person’s behavior. Feelings of anxiety, depression, isolation and worthlessness may cause them to withdraw socially. Narcissistic abuse distorts how the person experiencing it sees themselves and can lead to struggles with self-esteem. They may blame themselves for the narcissistic person’s aggression and come to believe that they deserve to be ill-treated. They may also place the narcissistic person on a pedestal and respond to their aggression by fawning over them in the hope that the relationship will revert to the love bombing phase again. To please the narcissistic person, the needs of the recipient of the abuse are neglected. To avoid angering the narcissistic person, the recipient of the abuse may even self-sabotage their own progress and goals.

People in recovery often describe “losing themselves” in relationships with a narcissistic partner and may experience:

  • Confusion
  • Self-blame
  • Depression
  • Inability to concentrate
  • Lack of motivation
  • Procrastination
  • Low self-esteem
  • Fear of failure
  • Hopelessness
  • Worthlessness
  • Decrease or absence of libido

Financial Effects of Narcissistic Abuse

Financial abuse is prominent a prominent feature of narcissistic abuse in the context of domestic violence. 99% of people who experienced domestic violence report that financial abuse was used to entrap them in the relationship. Perpetrators of narcissistic abuse sabotage their partner’s income through campaigns of manipulation, intimidation, and harassment. They may also take control of their partner’s income, restricting access to money. Victim-survivors are often plunged into poverty and forced to remain in abusive relationships because they cannot afford to leave.

According to the American Psychological Association, prolonged financial stress can cause people to develop, “higher resting heart rate, blood pressure, and circulating stress hormones such as cortisol.” Ultimately, this can lead to a condition known as allostatic load a term used to describe the cumulative effects of chronic stress that can lead to impaired physical and mental health.

Recovering From Abuse – Tips

As the old adage goes, ‘an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.’ If you’ve experienced narcissistic abuse it’s imperative to start looking after your health as soon as possible.

Choose activities that bring your peace of mind.

Try reducing your stress though activities that bring you a sense of fulfillment, get you to move your body, and give you peace of mind.

The following suggestions may be helpful:

  • Set realistic health goals
  • Learn time management skills
  • Eat healthfully
  • Move your body for at least 30 minutes a day
  • Get restful sleep
  • Spend time with family, friends, and pets.
  • Practice mindfulness.
  • Take up hobbies in your spare time

Part of recovering from narcissistic abuse is learning to change your focus from the narcissistic person to yourself so that you can use your time and energy to heal and build your best life. To prevent the long-term consequences of narcissistic abuse from impacting your health it is important to create a deep connection with yourself and a vibrant social life. Remember, all things are possible for those who believe. You’ve got this!

Confidential support is available 24/7/365 to anyone experiencing abuse.
In the USA call 1-800-799-7233 or log on to
In the UK call 0808 2000 247 or log on to

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Emotional Ghosting: 10 Signs of Emotional Abandonment

Emotional Gaslighting | Emotional Neglect | Abandonment

EMOTIONAL GHOSTING is a form of neglect where one partner emotionally disconnects from the relationship, causing confusion and pain to the other partner. It can show up as emotional withdrawal, ignoring the partner’s needs, and cool indifference to the relationship. The effects of emotional ghosting can be just as harmful as physical ghosting. Because of its passive-aggressive nature, emotional ghosting can be difficult to spot.

10 Signs of Emotional Ghosting

Recognizing emotional abandonment is not always easy. Here are ten signs commonly associated with the behavior:

  1. Absence of communication: Your partner is disinterested in discussing your thoughts.
  2. Absence of emotional intimacy: Your partner is disinterested learning about your feelings. 
  3. Absence of physical affection: Your partner is disinterested in physical intimacy or affection with you.
  4. Absence of support: Your partner is unwilling to provide you with emotional support.
  5. Absence of validation: Your partner does not validate your feelings or experiences.
  6. Absence of empathy: Your partner has no interest in understanding your perspective.
  7. Absence of trust: Your partner is no longer willing to share their thoughts and feelings with you.
  8. Absence of commitment: Your partner no longer values the relationship and is unwilling to work through issues.
  9. Absence of engagement: Your partner has divested from the relationship and avoids spending time with you.
  10. Absence of love: Your partner is indifferent and seems not to care about you.

Why does emotional ghosting hurt so much?

According to Developmental-Behavioral Pediatrics, emotional neglect is “a relationship pattern in which an individual’s affectional needs are consistently disregarded, ignored, invalidated, or unappreciated by a significant other.”

Prolonged experiences of emotional ghosting, otherwise known as emotional abandonment or emotional withdrawal, can damage a person’s sense of self. In her book, Neglect – The Silent Abuser: How to Recognize and Heal From Childhood Neglect, Enod Gray explains, “I believe neglect to be the foundation stone of outright abuse, although many neglected adults have developed ways of denying, justifying, and minimizing the abusive behavior they experience in relationships.”

Emotional ghosting is a painful, subtle kind of abandonment that can give rise to feelings of profound sorrow and intense loneliness. When an inconsiderate partner ignores your feelings and needs, it can wreak havoc on your self-esteem. Moreover, it can reawaken memories of similar experiences of emotional neglect in early life.

Why do people emotionally ghost others?

There are many reasons why emotionally unavailable people ghost partners. A benign motive for emotional neglect might be that the person is preoccupied with personal struggles in their own life, and doesn’t have the capacity to give their partner the emotional support they need.

Common reasons why a highly narcissistic person may emotionally ghost their partner might be that they come into romantic relationships in the guise of a false persona. Upholding the ruse can become exhausting, especially when the novelty of their romantic partner’s validation has worn off. This is when the narcissistic person is likely to start devaluing their partner.

For example, they might off-handedly start a rivalry between you and someone else by implying the other person is superior to you in some way or they might blame you for the fact that they no longer have the energy to maintain their false persona and tell you to your face that they think you are boring.

Because they lack empathy, they don’t end the relationship because the still want access to its benefits. Narcissistic people put a great deal of effort into grooming their partners and they usually want to continue to have access to the benefits associated with them as they seek new sources of validation. Because they are self-centered, they tend to be oblivious to the pain emotional ghosting causes their partner.

Moreover, if another source of validation captures the narcissistic person’s interest, they may emotionally ghost to manipulate their partner into ending the relationship due to neglect. In their view, if the partner breaks up with them, the narcissistic person can play the victim while pursuing their new interest and come up smelling like a rose.

How to protect your mental health from emotional ghosting

In the words of Aeschylus, “There is no pain so great as the memory of joy in present grief.” It is a fitting description of the despair that arrives hand in hand with recollections of the love bombing phase of the narcissistic abuse cycle. Indeed, the experience of neglect from a loved one is warning. The more cold and indifferent they grow, the more likely that their emotional withdrawal is a prelude to more egregious acts of aggression.

As painful as emotional ghosting can be, remember that you have agency. With a little bit of courage and a lot of focus, you can turn the experience into an opportunity to grow in self-love. 

Here are four tips for moving forward when you have been emotionally abandoned:

  1. Prioritize self-care: If you are being neglected by your partner, step up your efforts to look after yourself emotionally and physically. Start doing wholesome activities that give you peace and strength, like exercise, meditation, and spending time with friends and family.
  2. Remember who you are: The waning affection of another does not diminish your value in reality. Your intrinsic worth as a human being is fixed and does not fluctuate based on a troubled person’s inability to recognize it.
  3. Communicate your needs: Emotional unavailability does not mean that you should shut down. Set boundaries with your partner. Let them know what you are feeling and what you need from the relationship.
  4. Seek support: If necessary, seek support from a mental health professional to help you work your way through the pain and confusion of emotional abandonment. They can help you gain clarity about the situation and map up a workable plan to create the future you want. They can also help you gain insight into the underlying causes of emotional ghosting in your relationship and discover healthy solutions.

In summary, emotional ghosting can be just as destructive to a relationship as physical ghosting. If you think it is happening to you it’s important to take action to protect your mental health, identify your needs, and communicate them clearly to your emotionally detached partner. Be sure to reach out to people in your social circle for support and consider developing a strategy with a mental health professional to move forward.

Watch: Emotional Ghosting – 10 Signs of Emotional Abandonment

Confidential support is available to anyone experiencing abuse.
Book a one-on-one consultation or coaching session.

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