Living with a narcissist is to have your ticket punched for a one-way trip to Fantasy Island. And not the good kind of Fantasy Island.
All abuse at its core is an existential crisis. The abuser making it quite clear- agree to what I am doing or I will end your existence either literally or symbolically in my world.
The island metaphor works for abuse on several levels. I think most are aware of the physical isolation brought on by abuse and the abuser.
What I think gets overlooked is the mental isolation that occurs with abuse. The abuser makes it very, very clear- either believe in my fantasy land and support it fully- (i.e. tell lies to protect me) or you are finished.
Thus, you become isolated not only physically, but also mentally, because no one else is living with you in the world of made-up lies.
Any symbolic attempts to have flights of Truth and Reality land on this island are subsequently shot down.
This is what it is to live with a narcissist- you become the sole inhabitants of a mentally-distorted Fantasy Island.
Sidenote: Sometimes my art is not what I expect. This was simply a scribble on a sheet to see what shape would emerge. I saw it as a duck/swan combination (which my husband now creatively refers to as the “Swuck picture”).
And, when I realized this image somehow attached itself to this blog posting in my mind, I realized what I had drawn and it was painful.
I thought of ducks in a shooting gallery. The duck I had drawn seems to have a target on its eye. And, I realized, this is what it is to live with a narcissist- feeling as if you are in a symbolic shooting gallery, with a target upon your being.