Once upon a time, no contact was a rare thing. It only happened rarely, when the victim of an abuser was at the end of her rope after trying every possible solution she could think of. This is no longer the case.
Today, relationships are much more disposable. No contact is often preached as the only reasonable solution, no matter the situation. Many victims are shamed if they are unwilling or unable to go no contact with their abusive parents or other family members. Often, many who have opted to go no contact no longer see any alternative, especially when an abuser is a narcissist.
Unfortunately, what many people fail to realize is there are no “one size fits all” solutions especially when dealing with narcissists. No contact is not always possible or the desired solution. Some wish to get to that point but do not feel able to at the current time. It depends a great deal on the individuals involved & their specific situation. While I certainly believe no contact is a viable solution in many (well, most) situations, I have spoken with many who are unwilling or unable to go no contact. They have shown me there is a great need for compassion & understanding for them. I hope to help to create that with this post.
Narcissism is a spectrum disorder. Some narcissists aren’t very high on the spectrum, exhibiting few narcissistic behaviors. If someone is firm with their boundaries with those narcissists, chances are the narcissist will respect those boundaries, albeit grudgingly. If someone acts the exact same way with a malignant narcissist instead, someone very high on the spectrum, chances are their results won’t be so good. If a victim feels they can be firm & handle the lower on the spectrum narcissist, is it really necessary for that person to be shamed for maintaining a relationship if that is what they want to do?
Relationships shouldn’t be easily disposable. To tell someone who recently learned about narcissism that she should “just go no contact”, especially if the narcissist in question is a parent, is ridiculous! The victim needs to learn about narcissism & ways to cope with a narcissist, then try some possible ways to cope before deciding if no contact is the right solution. Ending any relationship is an extreme move, & it shouldn’t be taken lightly.
There is also such a thing as filial piety in Asian cultures. This means that the children care for their aging parents no matter the personal cost. Not doing this can result in a ruined reputation or being ostracized, for daughters in particular. It is unfair to shame those in this culture simply because you disagree with it. Agree or not, it is a fact of life, & they need to handle the situation however they see fit. They may need to implement low contact indefinitely to avoid the fallout of going complete no contact. This means they need support, understanding & love to help them in this difficult situation.
While no contact is often the only solution when dealing with a narcissistic personality, it shouldn’t be the first solution that comes to mind. It should be a last resort after other methods have been tried with no success.