Date: Present day
“Can you feel compassion for him?” The psychologist’s tone was neutral.
Heallen tuned into her feelings. “Yes.” She truly did feel compassion for her ex. For all of the narcissists in her life. For their experiences. Their shame and inner pain.
For a long time, she’d understood the terrible circumstances that typically led to a narcissistic wounding, and her heart softened for the trauma these people had suffered as children.
She explained her ex-husband’s childhood and relationship with his parents, adding, “It’s no wonder he became narcissistic.”
The psychologist nodded.
Then, among the feelings, she recognised a different kind of compassion. Compassion for herself.
It felt good. Warm.
Like a huge, snuggly bear hug.
“Feeling compassion helps me to stop being a victim. Helps me to move on and heal. Helps me figure out why they did their horrible shiz, and why I let them.
“Feeling compassion for them has shown me how to feel compassion for myself.”
She looked up at the psychologist’s kind face. “It makes me stronger, and more my true self.”
Her smile grew. “And that feels great.”