Narcissistic Personality Disorder is a diagnosis in the DSM (Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders)
NPD is considered a disorder more commonly found in men than women in which a person has:
An inflated sense of self-importance
Narcissistic Personality Disorder is a diagnosis in the DSM (Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders)
NPD is considered a disorder more commonly found in men than women in which a person has:
Key Takeaways/Red Flags:
If you're in a toxic/abusive/narcissistic relationship and want to get out please know there’s help & hope!
If you have children together:
The Other Side - Your Glow Up!
For help, resources and a community of healing and support, my very special guests this evening were:
Denise Kavaliauskas,Transformational Love Coach, Speaker & International Best Selling Author:
Kim Carpenter, 3rd generation Intuitive & Certified Mindset Coach:
SJ, "Le Disco Mama": Survivor, Thriver, Host of "Drama at the Disco" Podcast & Narcissistic Abuse Advocate:
Drama At The Disco- Podcast
Intro Music: "Welcome to The Kandid Shop" - Buss_TE
Outro Music: "Until it's Over" - Spring Gang
"LIVING & LOVING AFTER A NARCISSICTIC PARTNERSHIP: REAL TALK ON DEALING WITH A NARCISSIST!
Kandidly Krisin: Hola podcast, nation it's ya girl, Kandidly Kristin, and this is the Kandid Shop. This is part two of our relationship rewind series. This evening, we are diving deep into narcissism, narcissists, and narcissistic relationships. Joining me for this important discussion are transformational love coach speaker and international best-selling author of "Empower the woman within: Stepping into total freedom."
Miss Denise Kavaliuskous . Denise is also a survivor who is thriving after a narcissistic relationship and abuse. She is also the founder of life after narcissism coaching, a global resource for victims of emotional abuse. Denise's mission statement is to enhance the lives of survivors of abuse. Denise came out of her own 22 year toxic relationship with a smiling face and a positive attitude.
And now shows other women maybe just like some of you, how to do the same. My next guest is third generation intuitive and certified mindset. Coach Kim carpenter, who has over 15 years in the field of human relations. Kim specializes in emotional energy and how it impacts the love you have for yourself and for others.
She is also a thriving survivor of many types of abuse, including narcissism. And she now gently, yet effectively, guides others through their healing journeys and last, but certainly not least we have Ms. S J a K a, Le Disco Mama. SJ as a survivor of narcissistic abuse, who turned her pain into purpose by helping others who have been targeted by this same type of abuse S J's mission is to spread awareness and education about domestic violence and narcissistic abuse and to empower support validate and guide survivors as they navigate healing, no contact.
And co-parenting with a narcissist. I want you all to join me in welcoming these three amazing ladies to the Kandid shop. Yay. I, I am so grateful that you all survived and are thriving and are here to have a kandid discussion about this under talked about topic. Hey, you're so welcome. Thank you for having us. I love my music intro too let me just say that.
Tonight marks the exact one-year launch of this podcast. We launched the day after Valentine's day 2021. Our first episode was 2020. What the fuck? And we talked about the pandemic and all of those kinds of things, but I purposely wanted this episode to air on the same day. Not just because it's my anniversary, but because there was a whole lot of people sitting across the table last night at dinner and getting loved up on by a whole narcissist and they don't even know it!
They got all that Valentine's day. Yum, yum. Alright So before we get into the meat of the conversation, I just want to give, a little bit of definition, a couple stats, and then we'll just get right into the conversation about what it is to deal with the narcissist red flags too. If you're dealing with a narcissist and all that other kind of stuff.
So narcissistic personality disorder is actually a diagnosis in the DSM. It is considered a disorder in which a person has an inflated sense of self-importance it's more commonly found in men than women and symptoms include an excessive need for admiration disregard for others feelings. I E lack of empathy, the inability to handle criticism and an overwhelming sense of entitlement.
The cause of this NPD is what they call it is unknown, but likely involves a combination of genetic and environmental factors. What I found interesting in trying to research this, because there's not a lot out there about it, is that only one to 6% of the entire population actually suffer from a formal diagnosis of NPD..
The rest of them are just kind of low key assholes, I guess, but it's a spectrum. It's a spectrum. So like while we call a bunch of people, narcissists, there are very actually only like maybe 6% of the total population that actually have a formal diagnosis of narcissistic personality disorder. So I would like for our guests.
and I'm not that structured. I don't be like, you go, now you go now. So whoever would like to share, their journey, their story of being in a relationship with a narcissist I'd like just briefly, share what, what you went through, how you came out of it to the other side.
DeniseKavaliuskous: I'll share
if that's okay.
Kandidly Krisin: Just tell me who you are. So my listeners know who's, who's talking.
Denise Kavaliuskous: Denise Kavaliouskas
Kandidly Krisin: SKUs. Denise.
Denise Kavaliuskous: I love that you talked about the diagnosis and what was coming through my mind when you were sharing. That is the reason why, you know, one out of six and the statistics of that is because a narcissist doesn't think that they're, they are the problem. So it's not like they're going to go to the doctor and say, Hey, uh, something's going on with me?
I need help. It's always the other people, the family members or the ex-wives or the, or the ex-husband's that are saying that this is going on. And that's why the diagnosis, the true numbers of diagnosis are not reported because you have to think, you have like, when we are sick, we go to the doctor and we say, My arm hurts or this hurts or whatever, that's why.
But anyway, my story is 22 years, like you said, in my bio of being in a toxic relationship with a overt narcissist, and didn't even know it, which like you were saying, sit across from the table and it might not even know it. It's sort of true because when you come from an emotionally abusive home and you've seen narcissistic behavior as a child and growing up in that you think it's normal, you don't realize that it's dysfunctional, it's toxic.
So that was my case. And for many, many people, that is the same case. So he's the father of my two children. And it wasn't until after the 22 years. And I'll keep it real short, but lots of traumas and dramas that had an, we went through in the 22 years before I finally had the courage to leave, to stand up for myself and say, Basically fuck this shit.
I'm outta here. And that was 2011 and I moved with nothing but a futon couch and an air mattress and came here to North Carolina and started my life all over again. Well, in my forties, it didn't take long before the hoovering started, which is something that narcissists are famous for doing it's when they come back around and they print, paint this beautiful picture of, if we get back together, I'll never do this again.
I'll never do that again. And we're going to live happily ever after. And because these relationships are very codependent, I was very co-dependent on him financially. I fell for it. And I went back to Florida, packed up everything here in North Carolina, went back to Florida and we quote unquote, air quotes got back together, which, you know, lasted about five minutes.
And yeah. And so then I was back in Florida for eight months and then came back. 2012 back here. And this year we'll talk about anniversaries represents 10 years of no contact, no abuse. And 10 years of healing, 10 years of rebuilding myself. My life is completely different from where it was, uh, when I left.
So that's the very bullet point.
Kandidly Krisin: Let me, let me ask you a question, because you said something specific that kind of made my, my ears go. You said a covert narcissist, because in my research I found that there are overt narcissist.
Denise Kavaliuskous: Okay. I meant to say over if I said I meant to say over.
Kandidly Krisin: Yes. Okay.
Denise Kavaliuskous: Yeah. So the grandiose.
The very over the top. And even with that, I didn't know, my hair is blonde for a reason. Ladies. I didn't know that that what, you know, who he was was was the truth. Right.
Kandidly Krisin: Right. And, and in my research, I found that there are, it's a spectrum. There are grandiose narcissists. Those are the ones that we tend to focus on because it's out there like, oh my God, this guy is just full of himself and that or that, but there are also covert narcissist.
and what's the other one, malignant narcissist and communal narcissist. Those are what the DSM gives us the four primary types of narcissism. And they present very differently. But the. The bottom line and the defining the thing that runs through all narcissism is this really inflated sense of self, like my needs matter, yours don't and if you try to act like yours, do I'm going to Gaslight you and do a whole bunch of stuff so that you understand that I'm the one that's really, really important and your not so I thank I thank you for sharing that.
Kim, if you want to just speak a little bit about your experience.
Kim Carpenter: Yeah,
sure. So very much like Denise I'm now 10 years or 11 years free as well. So it's very, it feels very good. And yeah, mine was the same way. My relationship was, you know, I tried escaping three different times and on the fourth one I was successful.
But even after I left, it was still that contact of, oh, if you come back, it's going to be so wonderful and I've changed. And you know, it was the same story I'd heard so many times previously. And like you mentioned as well, the gas lighting that was such a big part of it and that they shift that blame and they, they make you think you're crazy.
And he was, he was telling me that all the time, anytime I would question his behaviors or his actions or his words or anything, it was always that I was the crazy one. And if I said, you know, well, other relationships aren't like this, he said, you're, you're in fantasy land. You know? So it always. Made you feel like you were, you know, questioning your reality all the time.
Kandidly Krisin: Right. And SJ, and it says, I just want to briefly touch on your stories. Number one, to show my listeners how similar they are, but then we're going to get into how dissimilar they are. And then I'd like to, cause what I really would like at the end of this conversation is for women or men, because yes, it's overwhelmingly men that exhibit this behavior, there are women that are narcissists and the act just like this.
So I would like for my listeners to have some real takeaways, but I don't want people to think that every, because I, I do believe that everybody is a little narcissistic, like there's some space for a healthy self-confidence and self-esteem and self-awareness and tooting your own horn, but it can be extreme.
SJ: So I'll try to, there's so much, right. There's so much that has happened. And I think it's hard to summarize the experience because if I could use one word to describe what it's like to be in a relationship with a narcissist, it's just confusion, right? They call it a cluster B personality, and I refer to it as a cluster F relationship.
It's a cluster. And I met a gentleman and we dated on and off for three years. At one point we were engaged, you know, the discards, the Hoovers, the gaslighting, all of that was in the mix. But I didn't really realize that this person was a narcissist until I had a child with him. And I really just saw the lack of empathy, the lack of support, the lack of really doing anything.
I was the personal assistant, the mother, the father, the chef, like I did it all. And it was just like a one-way street, right? So the type of narcissist that I'm dealing with is the malignant type. And so, you know, the short of it is one day I had a similar moment that Denise described where I was like F this I am done and I didn't really plan for it.
It just happened abruptly. And I caused what we call a narcissistic injury. And this is when we hurt their sense of self, right. That grandiose ego. And he didn't see it coming. I didn't see it coming. He used the terms. You blindsided me. There was a criminal assault. I had to go into hiding because he was threatening to take my life threatening, to take my family.
Member's life threatening, to burn down the house, all these horrible things, threatening to kidnap our daughter, et cetera, all these things. And so I went into hiding and while I was in hiding, he actually kick the door down with my home vandalize, the entire home left death threats all throughout the house, stole a bunch of stuff and told me on the, on the phone that he would make it his mission to ruin my life because I ruined his that's.
Kandidly Krisin: How well, let me S J N all you ladies, let me ask you this, these narcissistic personalities, do they generally present as violent?
SJ: Not all of them. Some are more covert, right? It's more subtle in the way they present, but the malignant narcissist tend to have more, I would say, almost more sociopathic and violent behavior.
They can be very violent and dangerous. So basically, you know, I finally, the police came to my house and they basically told me this. They said, you have to do something about. Or, you know, we've been here three times. The next time we come here, you may not be here if you catch my drift. And I, I knew exactly what they were saying.
It was escalating. It was getting really scary. I've never been that scared. So I pressed charges and this individual ended up being incarcerated for about seven months. And while they were incarcerated, you know, I had the protective order, all that while they were incarcerated, they call CPS on me. They filed for custody to get full custody of my daughter.
So since that day, right that day I got out, I've been no contact for two and a half years, but he, the post-separation abuse is what they don't really tell you about. It's the abuse after you get out. And I've been drug through the legal system for, for custody, for criminal court case for protective orders for the last two and a half years.
And finally, finally I won full custody of my daughter and there's only supervised. The only residual abuse that I'm dealing with is stalking. So I'm just managing that, but otherwise I am on the up and up rebuilding and glowing, like I'm doing so well.
Kandidly Krisin: Awesome. I love it. I love it. I love it. So I just wanted to read one other thing and then we will take questions.
Nobody has typed any questions in the chat, but we have a few people in here and I think most people just want to hear the stories and see how they relate to their personal situation. So they can maybe pinpoint, I might be dealing with a narcissist because. I want to talk about how do you do that? How do you first identify it?
And second get out of it. But I wanted to read this. I don't know if any of you have ever heard of Sandra L. Brown. She is the founder of the Institute for relational harm reduction and public pathology education. She wrote an article called 60 million persons in the U S negatively affected by someone else's pathology.
So she said there are approximately 304 million people in the U S one in 25. People will have disorders associated with no conscience, which include any social personality disorders, sociopath and psychopath 304 million. Divided by 25 equals 12 point 16 million people with no conscience. So we're talking about narcissist and each of those antisocial psychopaths will have approximately five partners who will be negatively affected by their pathology, which equals 60.8 million people just proximally affected by a narcissist.
That's a big number and why there are no quantitative studies on this is beyond me. It was just, I read that and I was like, damn, when you do the math, it's like, okay, that's all.
Denise Kavaliuskous: Who's not a narcissist.
Kandidly Krisin: And I don't know about any of you, but I actually had to look at myself in the mirror like, bitch, are you a narcissist? And I said,
I do have a healthy self-confidence, but, um, I'm certainly not a narcissist, but I don't know a narcissist that can say they're a narcissist. Right?
Omnikeyz: They can say that you are a narcissist though. That's why narcissist. And it's a learned behavior, I think too. So, you know, sometimes you learn how to mirror people and gaslight people from the narcissist, especially if you have a narcissistic mother or father that you grew up with is kind of hard to determine.
Get diagnosed. And like the lady said before, a lot of people don't get diagnosed because you know, a true narcissist is not going to think that, that the problem is with them
Kandidly Krisin: and go get help. Right.
Omnikeyz: And go get help. Exactly. You're the one that need to go get help. I told my narcissist, I said, you're a narcissist.
And he was like, uh, we're both narcissists. And I was like, okay, well that's double danger.
I'm not even going to argue with you on that. I'll be that but goodbye.
Kandidly Krisin: So ladies, you mentioned a term that I, I didn't encounter in my research and that was hoovering. Tell me what that is. What that looks like in real life.
SJ: Do you want to take that one to nice? It sounds like you had a lot of that.
Denise Kavaliuskous: Yeah, basically what it is is when they come back around after the breakup. So stalking is also a form of hoovering. In my experience, the hoovering was him coming back around and so he knew he could, he could get to me through our daughter.
So he started with her cause narcissist, they use people and they have no, like you were reading in the report there, they have no conscience. So the, the hard pill that I had to swallow and I'm sure every mom has to swallow when they have children with the narcissist that they don't even love their own children.
So he knew that he could get to me through our daughter. So he started with her and painting this beautiful picture of, you know, we're a family and, come back home and we're going to do this and that, and this is not going to happen anymore. And, just basically fantasy land. Right. And then he knew that, okay, well, we have to get, we have to tell mom, you have to tell mom.
Right? So then my daughter came to me and said, um, dad really loves you. Dad really wants us to come back. And my daughter was 17 at this time. She wasn't a baby. and he really wants to talk to you and this and that. And so, like I said, this was the first time that I was financially on my own. So I was scared.
We had an apartment, I had a job and all that, but I was still scared cause I, I was with him since I was 19. So that's the way that he got through to me. So hoovering is basically coming back around and painting the picture. Okay. And, and whatever they can do to manipulate you to come back into their world because they have to have their narcissistic supply.
And at that time I was his supply and when they don't have supply, they have to fill that need of having supply with having somebody. So basically the, the hoovering
SJ: and Denise, can I add on to that? Cause like, I think there's a couple things, right? We think a lot about the, after they lose control of you, the Hoover afterwards, but they also do this thing.
It's, it's more of a preventive Hoover. So if they start to get an inkling that you're having enough of their behavior and you're going to leave.. What they like to do preventively, it's Hoover you with future faking. So what they'll do is say, you know, no, no, no, I'll be, I'll be good. I'll change or no, no, no.
Let's go to couples therapy. We're going to work this out. We're a family. So it's, they do sometimes they do hoovering before you even leave. So they can, they can lure you back in the lion's den. Yeah.
Yup. They're tricky.
Kandidly Krisin: Yep. Yep. So a lot of what I saw in my research was that. Narcissistic behaviors are, I don't know if they're hard to pinpoint or the red flags are there and they just look like something else, but it seemed number one, it wasn't taken seriously because narcissistic abuse doesn't leave physical scars.
So it's not like you can go to the cops and say, oh, I got this black eye and his broken arm, he did this or that because what they do is more emotional manipulation. So can you ladies share with me and my listeners, what behaviors, like, what was the moment when you realized that this is some bullshit, he's like a whole in her like because I had to like legit sit down and look back over all of my past relationships.
And I concluded that with the exception of maybe 2 of my serious relationships. They were all narcissists.
SJ: I'll tell you, I'll take this one. I think I can, uh, capture this. And this is a thing like there's so many different red flags when it comes to narcissistic behavior, it's difficult to capture them all.
But I think some of the high level ones where, when you're starting to date a new person, what I encourage people to do is look at the speed of the relationship. If you're going on the first date, right? And the person is saying on day one, you are perfection. And I think you're my soulmate. And I think we should go get married and move in together and have a family.
This is it, red flag. That's not normal that you should be moving that quickly. And this is something they commonly do. The other thing that they like to do is it's usually. With a very vulnerable story or they like to say statements like all their exes are crazy. All their exes were abusive. Nobody should be talking about their exes on the first date anyway, that's weird when they do tell you when they tell you that they're crazy, what they're really saying is I'm crazy. And I'm just trying to make you believe that I have a sob story because I pinned you as an empathetic person who wants to help people and fix people. And so they, they lure you in because a lot of the times we want to make them a better person.
Right. They mirror our behavior. So if you're saying, oh, I love art. And they're like, oh, me too. Oh, I love, I love jazz music. Oh, me too. Me too. Me too. When they're basically like, you it's like you looking in the mirror, right. That's a red flag. Now, as you start to get closer to these people, like. One of the, one of the easiest ways to feel like you're a red alert that you're in a toxic relationship because here's the thing.
It is insidious. It's hard to identify like you don't know until you really know. I worked, we were trying to educate, but it's even still, it's difficult to really get a gauge of, uh, even, even a seasoned survivor may have a hard time until they're like, whoa, this feels weird, but here's what it is when there's really high highs, right there love bombing you.
They're giving you these gifts, they're going on vacations. Like they were just laying it on thick, but then all of a sudden they disrespect your boundaries. They call you the B word out of the blue. They start de-valuing you. If those high highs and low lows, if that's, if you're on a rollercoaster of love, you're probably actually on the rollercoaster into an abusive relationship,
Kandidly Krisin: right?
Okay, thank you. That was SJ. Yeah, that's me. Thank you so much. Denisa Kim, anything you want to add to that? And then after you guys give me each of your, your definitions of red flags, things that people can look for women and men, and I know we're a bunch of women here, but I want people to understand that women exhibit this behavior as well.
Then we're going to talk about, I want to talk about a little bit about what each of you do in terms of supporting and encouraging and giving tools to survive and thrive
Denise Kavaliuskous: Well, the moment was when I realized. That he was who he is, was the day that I asked for a divorce. This was in 2008. And, so he dabbled in cocktail of pills and had depression and anxiety and a whole bunch of stuff was going on.
But that day I told him I wanted a divorce and I was serious. I had said it a million times before. I don't know what it was about this day. Maybe it was just the buildup of all the drugs that he had put into his body and all the depression. And so my daughter and I, no, excuse me, my son and I went to the store, which was four blocks away.
And my daughter, 14 year old daughter had stayed at the house and she was taking a shower. And her dad was in the next room. He had been hibernating in the room all day. And because I told him I wanted a divorce, right. So his depression, he was wanting to be like, And I went to the store and I come back and we weren't gone, but maybe 20, 30 minutes.
Cause like I said, it was four blocks away and I come home and this was the biggest trauma that we had ever been through in our entire life. And that was, he had attempted to take his life that day with our 14 year old daughter in the next room. So she had gotten out of the shower, she was in her bedroom, he was in his bedroom with the door locked and she heard the gunshot and yeah, and so naturally she stormed out of the room and was like banging on the door.
She could hear him moaning, but he had locked the door so she couldn't get to him. So I believe I'm trying to remember. I believe he unlocked the door somehow and she got to him and dragged him out of the room. Into like the, like out of the room and towards the living room. And she had the phone and she was calling nine one one, and she had him on her lap.
And when my son and I came home, this is what we walked into. And so obviously, you know, your, your brain goes into like all these things. And I hadn't really realized, I knew he had guns, but I didn't realize it just didn't Dawn on me that he would do that. So that was when, not only saying that I wanted a divorce, but that was the day that I was like, this is, this is just crazy town.
And I just can't, this is getting worse and worse by the minute. And if I don't do something, if I don't leave, then what else could happen? Here's what I want the listeners to really grasp the victims of narcissistic abuse, because I did not leave him until two and a half years after that.
And that was because of the guilt that I felt that if I leave him now, because my kids were 14 and 13 at the time, if I leave him now, what kind of a mom would I be? Right. Cause my kids were begging me cause we didn't even know if he survived when the ambulance came and took him. We didn't even know if he was dead or alive because the police came in.
They separated me and my children and they were questioning us because, you know, at the time they didn't know that it was an attempted suicide. They didn't know if somebody had come in the house because our daughter didn't want to get her father in trouble and say that he had shot himself. So when she said, um, He has a gunshot wound or whatever they questioned well, who was there and she wouldn't answer them.
So they didn't know if it came in the house, if it was, you know, anything. So that was such a huge pivotal moment, but still two and a half years later is when
I left after that.
Kandidly Krisin: Can I just, your story just triggered something that I wanted to share real briefly. I had a similar situation and I had no clue that I was dealing with a narcissist.
I was at work, my almost adult daughter was home with my boyfriend at the time. And I'm at work. It's my birthday. And we were already, I was already like over him and all of his shenanigans. He decided to try to take his life. She said, mom, beep in here. He done took some pills and some other shit.
And I called the cops and I don't know, he, he, ain't here naked and I'm like, wow, that's really what they do. And then, because where I live in New Jersey, if they come there and you, even if it's an accidental overdose and he made the mistake, I don't know if it was a mistake or not. When they asked him, did he do this on purpose?
He said, yes. So that's an automatic, you're going to for 72 hours at the psych ward. And then all that day, he's calling me, are you going to come see me? No, dude, it's my birthday. And I never intended on spending it with you, which is why I went to work. Normally I take the day off, but just like, so you would really risk your own life because once you do something, especially taking pills or something, you don't know, the end result, you could really die.
And it's like, It's worth it to just manipulate me. That's crazy
Omnikeyz: because it was your birthday.
Kandidly Krisin: Oh my God. And it didn't because I was like, well, I'm not there. They took him. And I went on and had my birthday and kept move in. He was like, you're not going to come see me. No, for what? No, I did go to see him because I just really wanted to look in his face and say, are you serious with this?
Like in front of my, my, my kid, it was, it was too much. So Denise, I'm sorry. I had to just interject that because when you said that it just, it triggered that memory.
Denise Kavaliuskous: Well, that's great that you shared that so that your listeners can see the, the extent that they're willing to go to right. For mine was I want a divorce.
Yours was birthday, like crazy town!
SJ: I wanted to explain something it's called fog, right? It's the three things that when a manipulator or an abusive person feels that they're losing control and power over you, they will use one of three things or perhaps all of these things. Right. And when Denise was talking, she was saying she stayed for two and a half years after that because she felt really guilty.
Right? So fog, fear, obligation, and guilt. Those are things that they use to keep us there. So in my case, it was fear, right? I'm going to end your life. If you leave, I'm going to end your family's life. He tried to use fear. Denise was guilt and it sounds like yours was guilt as well.
Kandidly Krisin: Wow. That's going to be in the show note.
Y'all believe that fog fear, obligation, guilt. Okay. I, well, this is really, really good.
Kim Carpenter: I had had red flags and gut instincts, you know, since one or two months into the relationship. And for me, I guess the realization about who he really was came about, you know, six months before I had left and I was going to therapy at the time, just because he had, you know, he kept telling me I was so crazy, crazy, crazy.
And so I was like, okay, I'm gonna go. And, you know, figure this out. And my therapist actually classified him as being a sociopathic narcissist. And that's when I started looking into it and kind of understanding, you know, exactly what it all was. And so I started standing up for myself because I was getting more of my self love back and more of my, my true self and who I was and trying to stand up to him.
And that's when he became more controlling more, uh, he, he started stalking me at work. he asked me to plan a trip and for us, you know, traveling was his way of love bombing. Cause we took some really great trips to a lot of places, but that was his way of control. And so he asked me to plan a trip out west to the Rocky mountains and he just kind of casually mentioned, oh, well maybe we'll go for a hike one day and you'll accidentally fall to the side.
And you know, no one will know that anything has happened to you. That's when it kind of really hit home. And I was like, wow. Yeah, no, this isn't going to happen. My life. Isn't going to end in your hands. You know,
Kandidly Krisin: here's, what's what swirls through my head. Whenever I have any kind of conversation about toxic relationship, be it narcisssism or any other kind of toxicity, why don't I see.
' cause that's the question that like was first and foremost in my mind, like, why don't I see it? What is it in me that prevented me from seeing what is clear now was toxic and abusive behaviors on their part. Was there something lacking in me? And I think that people that hear this are gonna say, well, what's wrong with me? And I'd like, for any, or all of you to please make it clear that it's not you boo
SJ: I'm going to give you one of the best metaphors I've ever heard. And this this came out of a book called the narcissist playbook. Okay. So it's like this, you know how there's people who are on the beach that are looking out and they see a tsunami coming and they're just kind of stunned until the tsunami takes them.
And people are like, what the hell? Why didn't you run for your life? Why did you get that? And let the tsunami engulf you and like they get blamed. Like people look at them like they're stupid, right? Didn't you see the tsunami coming. And it's very similar of being a victim of abuse, right? If you don't know the red, the red flags or the signs that tsunami is coming, the wind, the water goes back in when the animals start to scurry up, it is too late.
Because by the time you realize it's happening, that tsunami has already engulfed you. And it's the same thing with an abusive relationship. We didn't know what those red flags are were. And if we did, if our intuition told us something, we either made an excuse for it. We either, you know, just ignored it entirely or make some sort of rationalization of, of why this isn't true.
And one thing that manipulative people are really good is gaslighting. They're really good at getting you to ignore the intuition that you have.
Kandidly Krisin: Agreed. Agreed. Agreed. So now that we've talked about the problem, because I'm a solution-based girl, let's talk about ways out, what you can do when you come to the realization.
Whenever that is at whatever point in there's no set point for every relationship or person, please understand that when you come into the, the knowledge like deep in your Sha-Na-Na, not like this guy is fucked up, he's a narcissist. And even if you don't have a name for it, I need to get out, but you're married and you have children and you, you got a life together, Denise, you were 22 years in give my listeners some of the steps forward and beyond this relationship, how do they do that safely?
Denise Kavaliuskous: Well, first make a plan. This is what I did. I made a plan and I was very strategic in my plan. So basically that entailed, where was I going to go? And how was I going to get there? So for me, I moved three states away, like I said, with a futon couch on an air mattress. Cause I was like,
I can't do this anymore.
Exactly, exactly. So our daughter was graduating in may and that's where the five months came in because in December of 2010, she came to me and she said, mom, I don't want to go to college here in Florida. And I was like, Hmm. Okay. she said, I said, where do you want to go to college? She said, I want to go to college in North Carolina.
And I was like, okay, well, this isn't working out. So I'm totally fine with leaving the plan, you know? And I've helped a lot of women leave the relationship safely to the plan has to be. Detailed and in place because the universe loves details. So one of the first things that I did was I set a date. Her graduation was a great date, right?
And we're leaving graduation or the day after the weekend or whatever it was. And then I booked the moving truck, right. Set that date. And then in between that time, I had to be the best actress ever to leave safely. This is so important because if they get wind and this did happen, my ex did get wind that I was leaving.
And what happened was he did another, it was another episode. It was another, it wasn't attempted suicide, but it was another episode where. He did the opposite this time. So he stopped taking all of the pills that he was taking. He went cold Turkey on all the pills. Well, that led to hallucinations that led to, I don't remember five days of hallucinating and then whatever it was.
And then on the last day his breathing got so shallow. I was up all night watching him breathe, making sure that he wasn't gonna die on me. Cause this is, this was my thought process. And, his, breathing got so shallow. I got scared and I thought he was dead literally. So I was smacking him and got on top of him and was shaking him.
My son woke up, came in the room was another whole, traumatic event. But after all of that was over, it was, on with the planning. To leave safely. So what I tell women is you have to be the best actress and you have to really be very strategic in your planning so that you get out safely. And that means you don't tell a lot of people what you're doing, right?
You keep this to yourself and you get everything in order. You get everything in place. So the moving truck, where are you going to go? How much money do you need to leave? Can you access money? I had one client who had, even before she told her abusive husband that she was leaving. They were both doctors and she had an inheritance money in another country.
She was from another country and in her mother-in-law's name and what we did was we planned it. So strategically that and her being the best actress that she got, that money, not only out of that country, but out of the mother-in-law's name into a bank account here in America, in her name. Then she told him she wanted a divorce.
Kandidly Krisin: Before she left. Right.
Denise Kavaliuskous: Get ed got all your ducks in line before you, if you tell them you're leaving or if you're just going to leave, get everything in line because the minute that they find out it could be another episode, like what I just described. Right, right, right. Or
worse. It could be worse, whereas.
Kandidly Krisin: Right. Thank you for that. Thank you for that ladies. Any of the other,
SJ: yeah, I just, I wanted to add just a few, a quick list of things to consider that I wish I had, obviously Denise is absolutely right with having a safety plan in place. Make sure you have a place to go. And they don't know where that place is.
Go. No contact. I mean, change your number. Get off of social media. Essentially. You have to get off the. Do not let them know anything about you anymore. Do not let them have a window to anything that you are doing as far as they concerned or concerned, you do not exist. Now, if you share, children with them, make sure you have, preemptively reached out to an attorney and know the laws, because if you go missing in the middle of the night with the children, they're going to accuse you of kidnapping and you don't want to get in any trouble now.
Uh, lastly, make sure any important documents like birth certificates, social security cards, anything of value, get ahold of it now because they will hold onto it and destroy anything that is important to you.
So know that ahead. and change all your passwords to every account
Kandidly Krisin: Got it. So these are similar mechanisms that are in place with any kind of domestic violence situations like these, just because they're, the person is not physically harming you.
Doesn't change. The danger that you could be in. I'm not sure who hasn't given their weighed in on how to safely step away from this relationship.
Denise Kavaliuskous: Kim, did you want to add anything on
Kim Carpenter: hi? Yeah. Yeah. I'll add in. And I'm in agreement with both of you it's to have that plan in place, make sure it's safe for you.
And if there's any kids or anybody else involved. As you know, I mistakenly wrote myself a post-it note one time, because he was going into my email and checking, you know, I had one friend that stood by me through it all, and I was telling her everything and unbeknownst to me, he was going in and reading my email.
So he knew what I had been telling her. And so I wrote myself a post-it note one time about. I said something to the effect of, you need to leave or just leave or just do it or something to that effect. And he found that and he questioned me. And so then I came clean and said, yes, I was planning on leaving.
And from that point on, I think I slept with this screw driver underneath my pillow, because I was so afraid that, you know, he was going to do something in the night. He was progressively getting worse with his behaviors. Although he had never been physically abusive with me. I was, I could, I just, I dunno, I sensed something was coming.
So, um, so yeah, just protect yourself in any way and just reach out to, if you still have it touch with family members or friends or anyone that you can go to. in my case, I went to a local shelter just to talk to them, to see what the steps were in leaving and different kinds of things.
And I ended up actually, my mom and stepdad came and helped me move out. But, um, yeah, safety's very important.
Kandidly Krisin: Awesome,, so ladies, so now you're on the other side, you're out, you are trying to rebuild your life separate and apart from this person, talk to me about number one, healing, number two, no contact. And what that means.
And number three, how you co-parent, if you have children with this person and what that looks like in real time, because that's where it can get to be a sticky wicket for people, no contact, but I got a co-parent and, now I'm trying to heal and do all these things. Don't necessarily want my children to not know their, their other parent and all of these moving parts that you have to, deal with while you're trying to heal and get past the abuse.
SJ: Yeah. Yeah. I'll go first. This there's a lot of ground to cover. but really ultimately healing is a huge part of this, right? Because if you don't heal, you are at risk of finding yourself in a relationship with another manipulative person you were targeted for a reason. You have qualities that they like.
So they're very predatory. So what you'll need to learn, is the no contact boundary that is your space to heal, but also just being able to tell people no, and that's not easy for people that have people pleasing tendencies. So I always I'm very pro therapy. I think it's imperative to get a trauma informed or domestic and violence informed counselor, and potentially doing that with some sort of coach to help.
Rebuild your life. And when it comes to being on the other side, if you're co-parenting documentation is key, you need to document everything because knowledge, documentation is power and understanding. And then you have to go into this, like, you know, research mode, understanding their behavior so that you can identify it and know how to handle it.
And, and lastly, when it comes to sharing children with them, you need to paint yourself in the best light possible. And that's gonna be really hard because this person abuse you, you probably resent them. You might be jaded and it's easy to fall into that hole. But no matter what, at the end of the day, the reality is, unfortunately you share children with a sociopath and narcissist, a malignant abuser, and you need to still foster a positive relationship, no matter what that looks like with the children and make sure that the children see a healthy example of an adult, because they're not to get.
From the other parent. So, you know, what's really hard healing and parenting, but it can be done. And I believe that people that they choose strong people. And when you tap into that strength, you will be amazed with who you'll become and what you're capable of.
Kandidly Krisin: All right. Listen, get you a tribe, a support system, people to help you through it.
SJ: It takes a village.
Kandidly Krisin: Absolutely. It takes a village to heal yourself. You need to surround yourself with people that are going to love up on you in a genuine non-toxic way. Yes. Oh, anybody else want to chime in on the steps? After, on the other side, the living and thriving.
DeniseKavaliuskous: I I back up and agree with everything that, SJ just said. one of the biggest things that I always share with women is the healing piece to me. And in my experience, and in all of the time that I've been doing this and my clients, that is the number one most important thing. Because even before you, they hire an attorney because that emotional support, having that emotional support and going through the healing process is going to make a world of difference.
Because somebody was sharing about the court system and the abuse continues in the court system. Narcissistic abuse is not recognized. Sometimes domestic violence abuse is not even recognized in the court system. So in my experience, and what I've seen with my clients is that the abuse continues in the court.
So having the emotional abuse and going through the healing process is going to make a world of difference. And also healing is going to stop the cycles of abuse and attracting these abusive people in your life. Because when you heal, you've now implemented your highest level of self love, loving all of you, the good, the bad, the ugly you've gone through the forgiveness.
You forgive him, you forgive the past, you forgive yourself and truth. You now can speak your truth without apologizing, without having guilt, without having shame, without having blame and trust the trusting process. You trust yourself, you know, how to intuitively trust the person sitting across from you.
And you say yes. When you mean, yes, you say no when you mean no. Right? Cause healing heals people pleasing and narcissists love people pleasers because that's how, cause people pleasers are givers and narcissists are takers. And so it's a match made in hell once every one to take her. So yeah, I would say that's the biggest part to do before you do anything is having your emotions in alignment, your emotions in check so that you're no longer being manipulated by the court system or him anymore or anybody else, right?
Yeah. That's what.
Kim Carpenter: Healing is such a, an important part of it because, you know, if you don't choose to do the healing, those, those patterns do resurface and you, and you end up in another relationship that's similar or in similar circumstances, or just meeting people or drawing those people to you. So you really have to take that deep dive to your, into yourself and get to know yourself on some pretty profound and intimate levels.
And also that piece about, the no contact that is so important, even though for me, I know I wanted to, because I knew he was going to be telling everybody, well, it was her, it was her fault. And blaming me, you have to kind of get over that aspect of it and just not worry about the judgment of others or what other people think and just do what's best for yourself and heal yourself.
And in all, in all comes full circle for yourself. Once you do that.
Kandidly Krisin: Okay. Great. So ladies, I have to ask you, you all are on the other side of these kinds of relationships. How do you date find love in a healthy way? Cause I, I haven't even gone through half of what you've gone through and it's difficult for me to sit down across from somebody and open up, be transparent, trust what they say, everything is like, Hmm.
So how does that work? Cause I'd like to give people hope, like there's hope after these kinds of relationships for you to find love, find real love, genuine love. So I'm going to start with Denise, because yeah.
Denise Kavaliuskous: Yes, 100%. There is hope 100% you can heal from these experiences and you can find true love.
That's that's. My whole motto is true love after toxic love. I am blessed to have the man of my dreams. I'm married to the man of my dreams. We got married in June, 2020 on a North Carolina beach, and that was that's my story of coming out of that 22 year relationship and healing myself to be able to attract somebody who's not toxic anymore, to be able to love myself on the deepest levels and not get manipulated.
And that's my husband and I, when we met, I was, had not even gone through my healing journey yet. I was 2013 and I pushed him away. 'cause I wasn't ready for a nice guy. I wasn't ready for somebody who was going to treat me well, I was still going after the bad boys, the ones who were manipulating me and gaslighting me, and basically just different versions of my ex.
And then when I started my healing journey in two, 2014, my now husband and I, started to see each other in the beginning of 2015. And I was still going through the healing journey. I don't think I'm ever going to stop healing. It's always going to be a journey of healing, but that's when we started to date and then we got engaged in 2017 and then we got married in 2020.
So absolutely you can. Yes, absolutely. And this is what I teach my clients, like how to go from toxic love to true love. It's 100% possible. Yeah.
Kandidly Krisin: Awesome. Awesome. Awesome. And that does my heart proud. I'm just grinning over here
Kim or SJ either one of you guys want to share how, how you made that possible in your own lives and give my listeners some tools to do that as well.
SJ: Yeah, Kim, I'll let you go.
Kim Carpenter: Yeah. Yeah. 100% is taking time for yourself because I know a big part of me and sometimes what these relationships bring out is that codependency. You need to break that within yourself. Taking time to be by yourself to give yourself self love, to get back your self worth and your confidence, and just everything about you to release all of those other dependencies and things that you have going into relationships. and to just keep healings, like Denise said, it is a healing is a lifelong journey and it gets easier.
The more you do it and less and less, but there are still, you know, things that may pop up that may trigger or may bring something out. You have to go back in and heal again. So you can definitely find love on the other side. but you first take that step, towards yourself.
Kandidly Krisin: Awesome. Thank you, Kim and SJ.
SJ: Yeah, I, I, you know, Denise, your story is inspirational because I think a lot of people don't believe that that's possible, but it's so true when you see what love isn't, you will now know what it is, and it really does bring that to light. So I'm so happy to hear that you found true love. And for myself, I haven't, I haven't started dating because I'm so busy dating myself.
I'm finally taking space to just really find out like who I am and really heal those, those broken parts and just, you know, do me, this is my time And this is the first time I'm comfortable being alone, being alone. Doesn't always have to be lonely. And when you get into that space, you know, you're healing because you love yourself, really what it's all about.
Kandidly Krisin: All three of you are amazing. And I just, I really. Again, like I said at the beginning, I'm glad you survived. I'm glad you're here to share your stories, your wisdom, your experiences, and give my listeners and myself some things to chew on some real practical tips. If they end this, get off this live and take a really good look at their relationship.
And they're like, okay, I gotta do better than this for myself, for my children, whatever it is. I just appreciate every single one of you. We are closing in on the one hour mark. And it goes by super, super, super fast. I have my, my stopwatch on and I'm like, it can't be 50, 55 minutes yet. But, the reason I keep it tight to the hour is because my episodes are rebroadcast on block 1 0 5 internet radio, and they only give me an hour slot and I hate for any part of it to be cut off.
But to everybody that's listening on this live now, and to everybody that will hear it when it's edited and goes out to the world, Denise, Kim S J's information will be in the show notes. I will include a whole bunch of key takeaways and nuggets and ways you can contact. Any of these three young ladies, if you need help, figuring out if you're in a narcissistic toxic relationship and how to get out of it, if you are, their information will be there.
I just want to open the floor up to anybody that's on the, in the live. We got a lot of chat going on, but nobody's calling in. But if anybody has any questions, comments, this is the time to do it. If not, then I'm going to ask my, three amazing guest to give me last thoughts, what you would like to be the takeaway for my listeners and cause this is all for them.
So I don't see anybody calling in. I don't see any comment. All right. So ladies, in any particular order, if you could just give me last thoughts, I'd appreciate it so much. Anything that popped into your head that you didn't say before, now's the time to get it out there.
Denise Kavaliuskous: I'd just like to say to your listeners that it's really important for them to be kind and patient with themselves during this time.
There's so much so criticism that we do to ourselves and self-blame and all the rabbit holes that we go down when we've been in these abusive relationships. Right. That only makes things worse. There's nothing that you did wrong. There's nothing wrong with you. You're not damaged. You're not broken. These are just simply unhealed wounds and wounds heal.
SJ: I just want to say, for anybody listening, just know very high level, that real love it. Doesn't hurt. And that's the biggest red flag, right? If you're in a relationship and you feel like it hurts and you're crying every day and you don't know who you are and you don't recognize yourself in the mirror and you feel crazy, that's not love that's abuse.
And whether they're a narcissist or not beyond the diagnosis, look at the behaviors and how that person is treating you and making you feel. And ultimately, if you are in one of these relationships and you're navigating no contact, Please, no matter what anyone says, there's going to be people that are going to blame you and say, you chose this, you ignore the red flags.
There's a lot of haters, but just know that it is not your fault. Abuse does not discriminate. It does not matter what color you are, what gender you are, how rich you are, how educated you are. It doesn't discriminate. This can happen to anyone. And so there is a support system and I have resources.
I know the other ladies on here have resources, do not be afraid to connect and find that support system with other survivors community is a huge part of healing.
Kandidly Krisin: Yes. Thank you. Anybody else?
Kim Carpenter: Yes.
And just real quick, you know, loving living and honoring your most authentic self is so important.
Kandidly Krisin: Agreed.
That was briefed by profound. Thank you so much for that. So we are at the end of our time together, I wish we could be longer. I am going to absolutely reach out to all three of you to do a one-on-one so that I can have follow-up to this episode. I think it's super important under discussed, and I'm glad that it was a topic that I landed on.
So our next live ladies and gentlemen, we'll be on March 8th. We're going to move off of relationships and into entrepreneurship. This is about tax refund. Season. People are getting some refunds and have some money, and I wanted people to kind of reimagine what they can do with the money. Maybe not shoes and bags and clothes, maybe investing in yourself, moving that side, hustle to a main hustle.
So we're going to talk about business basics 1 0 1. So that's on March 8th at 8:00 PM. I hope you guys come back to join me in the interim. I am going to be uploading some recorded interviews that I did with, some love coaches all to wrap up this relationship rewind series again, Denise Kaba. Lusko Kim carpenter.
And Le disco mama SJ. I thank you all for joining me. I thank you for being here. I thank you for your wisdom, your information. I just thank you.
Denise Kavaliuskous: Thank you so much. Thank you
Kandidly Krisin: . You're welcome. You're welcome. All of their information will be in the show notes so that you can reach out to these ladies.
Whoever resonated most with you and connect with them and get the help support, and resources that you need. And like I said, at the end of every episode, guys, I want you all to Keep it safe, Keep it healthy and Keep it kandid.
Coach, Speaker, Author
Denise Kavaliauskas is a Transformational Love Coach, Speaker & International Best Selling author.
She is a survivor & THRIVER of narcissistic abuse.
Denise is the founder of Life after Narcissism CSW Coaching, a global resource for victims of emotional abuse that offers support and coaching to women who are READY to break ties with narcissistic abuse in past relationships.
As a survivor of trauma in narcissistic abuse, Denise uses her real- life experience as a way to connect with others and teach, love & support them in their healing journey.
Denise's mission statement is "to enhance the lives of survivors of abuse. Through the four core pillars of healing, we empower women to heal the trauma and awaken their true potential to create an extraordinary LIFE AFTER NARCISSISM.”
She has a clear vision for seeing the spots that exist in every “stuck” situation.
And the creativity to transform it.
Denise has managed to come out of her own 22- year toxic relationship with a smiling face and a positive attitude.
And now shows other women (just like you) how to do the same for themselves.
Narcissistic Abuse Survivor
You may know me as "Le Disco Mama" but I go by SJ. I am a survivor of narcissistic abuse. I turned my pain into purpose by helping others who have been targeted by this type of abuse. My mission is to spread awareness and education about domestic violence and narcissistic abuse. I aim to empower, support, validate, and guide survivors as they navigate no contact, healing, and co-parenting. Check out my content and resources at my Beacons link. beacons.ai/le_disco_mama
Podcast Drama At The Disco: https://open.spotify.com/show/6Qg8VjgEoe7I35c6XGV7Lm?si=15a6b2e7a4bc4cac
Intuitive Mindset Coach
As a third generation Intuitive, Kim is a certified Mindset Coach with over 15 years in the field of Human Relations, and specializes in emotional energy and how it impacts the love you have for yourself and for others. She is a thriving survivor of many types of abuse, including narcissism, and she gently, yet effectively, guides others through their healing journeys.