This morning I woke up to a message from narc’s female friend, who I haven’t been in contact with since February, asking if I’d like to get together for dinner or drinks.
When I saw her name pop up, my heart started racing, my body starting shaking, and I felt dizzy and panicked. It’s the same feeling I used to have every time I heard from narc after a period of separation.
At the time, I had thought that what I was feeling was excitement. I thought I was giddy and nervous to hear from him because I was so in love with him. And even though I had been in love before and knew what that head over heels, butterflies in the stomach feeling feels like, I convinced myself this was a different more passionate love and that was why I was shaking so hard that it was a struggle to even type a reply.
Now that I’m on the other side of things where I have a much clearer perspective, it’s obvious to me that this whole-body hyperarousal is and was my fight or flight response. Every subconscious part of me was screaming out that I was in danger, and my body was activating every part of itself trying to pull me away to safety.
This reaction literally only ever happens in situations related to him, and now here it is again when I hear from his friend.
Our bodies are quite amazing, complex systems designed to survive. If we can learn to trust our guts then I believe our intuition can do an impressively reliable job of steering us clear of danger.
So, if you are still involved with your narc and you get this same physical response, or if you’re dating and your body is responding with shakes and anxiety instead of butterflies and heart expansion, please recognize that this is a sign to you that you are not safe. Heed the warning! Fight the urge to romanticize it or rationalize it, and walk away.
After all, your gut has only one agenda and that is to protect you. It has no ulterior motives, ever, and it deserves your trust more than any other human being ever will.
Read more about trauma and the fight or flight response: