Validating Yourself

Everyone needs validation. It’s simply a built in human need that God gave us all.

For those of us who survived narcissistic abuse, invalidation was a way of life, so it’s only natural that we crave validation more than the average person. We want to be heard & understood for a change! The problem with this is so many people don’t offer us the validation we crave. Instead, they make excuses for the narcissist, don’t want to listen to our stories or tell us things like we’re just angry, we need to let it go or other similar heartless comments.

You also can’t count on gaining validation from your abuser. It is the very rare abusive person who goes to a victim, admits that what they did was wrong, ask for forgiveness & makes appropriate changes in their behavior. Sure, some do apologize at some point, but their failure to change their behavior & either accept full responsibility or failure to stop blaming others for their behavior proves that they aren’t being genuine. The abusive behavior will continue & they don’t care about the pain & suffering they caused victims. They only apologize as an attempt to pacify a victim, not because they want to improve the relationship.

Situations like these are a very good reminder that you can’t rely on getting all the validation you need from outside sources. People are flawed, & they will fail to give you the validation you want & need sometimes. You have to learn to validate yourself instead of relying on others, which is where your healing truly begins.

As always I recommend starting this with prayer. Ask God to help you to learn how to validate yourself, rely less on validation from outside sources & even to give you validation.

You also need to accept the fact people won’t always give you the validation you need. Remind yourself often that people aren’t perfect, & they will fail you sometimes. It’s just a part of life. It doesn’t necessarily mean they don’t care or they don’t love you. They are simply flawed human beings like every single other human being.

You also need to accept that your abuser won’t accept responsibility for the pain he or she caused you either. That type of validation most likely never will happen. You know what happened, & that truly is good enough. Even if no one else believes you, it really can be enough when you know the truth.

What people often refer to as feeling sorry for yourself is what I think of as showing yourself compassion, & it’s something you need to do. You have been through some pretty bad things, & it’s ok to admit that both to others & to yourself. Stop minimizing your experiences & your pain! You’re only invalidating yourself by doing that!

Never compare your situation to others. Doing so often leads to thoughts like, “Well that person had it way worse than me. I shouldn’t complain.” That is so wrong & also very self invalidating! Don’t do it! Trauma is trauma. So what if someone went through worse things than you did? You went through much worse than someone else did, too. Does any of that make any difference? You need to focus on your situation & ways to heal, not whether it’s better or worse than other people’s situations.

Stop judging your feelings, too. After abuse, it’s only natural to be angry or sad sometimes. It’s natural to have ruminating thoughts about certain especially painful situations or to wonder why the abuser did what they did to you. Don’t criticize yourself for thinking these things. Accept that they’re just a normal part of the healing journey.

With a little time & practice, you can learn to be your own best “validator.” You won’t regret learning this skill. In fact, I’m certain you’ll be glad you did! xoxo


Filed under Abuse and the Healing Journey, Complex Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, Mental Health, Narcissism

21 responses to “Validating Yourself

  1. Pingback: Validating Yourself — Cynthia Bailey-Rug – A Blog About Healing From PTSD

  2. This is good advice for anyone who has been abused, physically, emotionally, or sexually. We all need validation.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. jarilissima

    This is such a helpful post for me! When you said, “You also need to accept that your abuser won’t accept responsibility for the pain he or she caused you either.” that is very true. I actually confronted my abuser (years ago) to get closure… and instead I got mocked in a baby voice by a grown man. They never admitted to the hurt they caused.

    New here, can’t wait to see the rest of your blog/website 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hi there! Thank you so much! My website is if you’d like to check it out. 🙂

      I’m so sorry he did that to you! (((hugs))) His response to your confrontation doesn’t surprise me at all… they truly can’t understand it when people are upset by their abuse. You’re just supposed to tolerate it indefinitely & with a smile… if you don’t, you’re worthy of being mocked, ridiculed, invalidated, etc etc. Yet, if you tolerate the abuse, you’re weak, stupid, etc. Incredibly frustrating monsters, narcissists!

      Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you for your response and I’m so glad that it was helpful for you. Yes, it is very seldom the abuser will admit any wrong doing. When I confronted mine he merely said, “I don’t know why I did it.” For 18 miserable years of him “doing it” and he doesn’t know why? But we have to forgive for us to be free from all the bitterness, guilt, shame, and hate.

      Liked by 2 people

  4. This was a really great post. Thank you for sharing your feelings. I know it will help others.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Thank you so much for sharing this valuable advice, I have no doubt that it will reach and truly help someone who needs to hear this message. I only hear the phrase ‘feeling sorry for yourself’ in a negative way. I loved the point that you made about it.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. ibikenyc

    Read this a couple days ago and a few times since. Every time I start to reply, I am flooded with emotion (in a good way).

    They will never apologize because they didn’t DO anything wrong {{{EYEROLL}}}

    And / or you’ll get what I’ve seen described as the “fauxpology” or “nonpology;” to wit: “I’m SORRY you’re upset” or, angrily, “I SAID I was sorry!”

    Liked by 1 person

    • (((hugs)))

      Of course they didn’t do anything wrong. They didn’t do/say that or if they did, it’s your fault!

      Ohh yea. That “apology” is the worst. It’d be better if they said, “I’m only saying sorry to shut you up.” At least that’d be honest..

      Liked by 1 person

      • ibikenyc

        Thank you for the hugs ❤

        THAT is funny: "I'm only saying sorry to shut you up." LOLOL!

        Yet another dilemma, though: That would require — GASP! — self-awareness AND honesty!!!!! Imagine the implosion that would result!

        Yeah, just the other day I heard something about how he's "a nice guy, unless [he's] provoked." I was literally looking around for the camera.


        • You’re welcome!

          It’s true isn’t it?! LOL

          Oh good golly no!!! Self awareness & honesty too?! NOOOOOOO!!!!

          No wonder you were looking for the camera.. there’s gotta be one somewhere!

          That reminded me of when I was 17. My mother was raging at me about God only knows what this time. She finally left the room & as she was leaving, the phone started to ring. I answered & it was her friend. This person obviously knew the stories of how horrible I was because she proceeded to tell me how lucky I am to have a mother who loves me so much. I need to appreciate her & behave myself for her. Yea…. was wondering who she was talking about because I wasn’t feeling so lucky, especially after that scream fest that happened only a couple minutes before. Got the phone to Mom as fast as I could. Sheesh…

          Liked by 1 person

          • ibikenyc

            And I KNOW your mother was all sweet and loving to that friend once she got on the phone with her.

            They NEVER pull their crap in front of a witness. Also, anything everyone else does is terrific — the best thing ever! — even if you just got reamed for doing the identical thing.


            • How did you know?!?! LOL Yep, that is it. This friend was the principle of my elementary school. Mom always wanted to be a teacher, so she got very involved at the school. They met that way & struck up a friendship, probably because Mom was very impressed with her.

              So much yes!!! to your last paragraph! UGH!!

              Liked by 1 person

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