You’ve finally gotten yourself unhooked from the claws of the narcissist, but the problems just don’t want to go away. You’re having to debunk rumors left and right, and the embarrassment just never seems to stop. When a narcissist continues to attack you indirectly and publicly like this – spreading rumors, telling lies, and making everyone you know start to doubt you – this is called a smear campaign.
The narcissist has already lost the battle with you, but in doing so, you have further damaged their ego, and they fear that you’ll ruin their reputation too. They know that if they don’t do something, the truth about their behavior will soon come out, and they can’t let that happen. So instead, they begin to tell on you. The narcissist will tell your friends, family, and coworkers that you are the crazy and abusive one. This way, everyone has it in their minds that you’re the bad one first. Now you’re left on the defense and it becomes a battle of he-said, she-said.
While you can’t stop the narcissist from talking to everyone you know, your reaction to their efforts to destroy you can make them do a double take. If you find yourself in public with the narcissist, getting angry and upset with them with everyone watching is only going to make the narcissist’s false stories seem truer. But by disengaging, the narcissist could even lose interest.
When dealing with a narcissist, it’s always a good idea to have a great support system and even a plan in place for when bad things happen. Through all the mess of the smear campaign, you’ll find out who your real friends are, but you will be the one to come out stronger in the end.