When it comes to the cycle of narcissistic abuse, discarding hardly ends the connection you have with them.
That’s when the smear campaign begins and they send their flying monkeys out to help.
“…smear campaign? Flying monkeys? Girl what are you on?!“
That’s what we’re going to dig into today. While it sounds like something out of a sci-fi movie, having this knowledge could save you so much pain in the future.
This is when they throw you out to get new supply. New supply meaning a new person, someone new that they can continue to get that high from that they’ve become immune to in your relationship.
But considering the cycle of narcissistic abuse and how they wanted so much power over you, it would be far too easy for them to leave it at that.
In order to maintain power over you, they start the smear campaign.
We’ve all heard of the smear campaign that happens between politicians. It’s when the mudslinging begins and instead of focusing on their own strengths, they focus on tearing down their opponent by making them look bad to the general public.
It’s the same way with the narcissistic discard.
The smear campaign is what happens after they leave. Whether you leave them or they leave you doesn’t seem to matter much aside from the material they use against you.
They’ll tell everyone around them how awful you are and how they’re nothing but a victim. The narc will use any means necessary to get people to feel bad for them and isolate you farther.
I experienced this personally. I’ve had a lot of people show up back into my life trying to get dirt on me only to find out that the story they were told was so obviously not true that they couldn’t even try to deny it. It always starts out the same way and ends with them apologizing for believing my ex.
The truth always comes out.
The best way to handle the smear campaign is to not engage in it.
As someone who truly values her perceived character and respect, this is incredibly hard for me. But what’s even worse is giving them the reaction they want.
They do this to maintain power over you. The best way to not give them that power is to not engage. This also makes it very clear who your real friends are and who won’t even bother to check the see the validity of the story.
It truly sucked, but I realize now that I didn’t ‘lose’ anyone. Instead it was an easy way to weed out the people who weren’t genuinely there for me. Keeping that mindset won’t make it any easier, but it will help you in processing it.
The next thing they do is enlist the help of their little monkeys.
Do you remember the scene in Wizard of Oz where the wicked witch sent her flying monkeys out to get Dorothy and her friends? It was a terrifying scene that gave me nightmares for years.
That’s where the phrase “flying monkeys” comes from.
The abuser will make sure they tell every one of their friends how awful you were and how free they feel now that they’re not attached to you anymore. They then round them up and ask for their support in spreading the story.
They round up their monkeys and send them out to attack in any way they can.
This may be a comment on a social media post about you solidifying the story that you’re the bad guy.
This may be them coming after your social media accounts and digging into things just so they could leave a comment that will get to you.
This could be something that’s done in person as they try to get to your friends and family.
They do the job of feeding the abuser’s ego as well as spreading the smear campaign far and wide.
Let people say what they’re gonna say.
Let the block button become your best friend. It’s harder when it’s in person but enlist help to fight them off as best you can.
Trust me, I understand how hard this is. It feels like you’re letting them win by not yelling back at them. But the fact of the matter is that you’re winning by not giving them the reaction they want.
When you block someone, you’re taking a stand and letting them know that they’re not worth your time. You’re saying that your peace matters and you won’t tolerate disrespect.
Don’t honor them with your energy. Hit the block button. Walk away.
Have a community around you. Reach out to someone that you can vent to and let it out. That way you’re not stuffing down but you’re not giving the monkeys the reaction they’re looking for.
This is one of the many reasons that having a solid community is so important.
Having people in your corner to support you and that understand what you’re going through is invaluable. They’ll be there as you vent and they’ll also be there for you when you want to respond but know you shouldn’t. They’ll keep you accountable and keep you from doing something you’ll regret.
Not a single piece of this is easy. But when you understand what’s happening, it’s much easier to brace yourself and walk away. If you’re just reacting to it without understanding, there’s a greater chance that you’ll get stuck in the smear campaign trap.
But when you know what’s going down, you can call it out for what it is and hold your head high.
I know all of this is so much easier said than done. But I believe in you and I KNOW you can do this.
You’ve got this, boo.
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