Studies Show Anxiety Disorders May Be Caused By Exposure To Narcissistic Abuse

Physical, verbal, or emotional maltreatment lead to psychological wounds that feel impossible to heal afterward in life.

Abuse survivors usually live an everyday life full of negativity and trauma that last for a long, long time after the end of the abuse. They find it even harder to start living a new life, and enjoy the peace and joy.

Victims of abuse often suffer from anxiety, distressing memories, trust issues, and blocks to intimacy.

Any form of mental and emotional abuse leaves long-term effects on the emotional and mental health, and in case this trauma is experienced during childhood, it causes serious consequences later in life.

Newest psychological research shows that the root cause of anxiety is, in fact, narcissistic abuse. Psychologists maintain that it is normal to dissociate as a result of emotional abuse, which leads to anxiety disorders.

The victims of narcissists are always persuaded that it is their fault, no matter what happens. Their most common preys are empathetic and passionate people.

The Mayo Clinic compiled a list of the most common anxiety disorders, as follows:

  • Anxiety disorder is a result of a medical condition such as intense anxiety or physically-induced panic attacks.
  • Generalized anxiety disorder is the disorder manifested by persistent and overwhelming anxiety about commonplace activities or events.
  • Panic disorders lead to cycles of panic disorders, like panic attacks caused by the fear of out having one.
  • Social anxiety disorder is a consequence of the avoidance of social situations out of fear, anxiety, and embarrassment.
  • Substance-induced anxiety disorder causes anxiety or panic attacks as a result of the use of some substances, or withdrawal from them.
  • Selective mutism is a disorder that usually occurs in abused children. These children are not able to speak in some situations, and can normally speak in relaxed settings.
  • Agoraphobia is an anxiety disorder characterized by an irrational fear of open and public places.
  • Separation anxiety disorder is a result of the separation of parents and is common in children in school.
  • Phobias are fears or anxieties related to certain situations or objects.

Children with emotionally abusive or narcissistic parents have an increased risk of anxiety. They grow up to be skilled manipulators, and manage to turn the situation around when they are in trouble. The victims become confused and even though they know that something is very wrong, they are not sure what to do.

Muhammad Gadit from Memorial University of Newfoundland conducted a study which showed that:

“Verbal abuse can cause significant psychological problems in later years and brain damage, including anxiety, depression, anger-hostility, and dissociation.”

Furthermore, Doctor Douglas Fields maintains that: 

“When [an] environment is hostile or socially unhealthy, development of the brain is affected, and often it is impaired.  Early childhood sexual abuse, physical abuse, or even witnessing domestic violence, have been shown to cause abnormal physical changes in the brain of children, with lasting effects, that predisposes the child to develop psychological disorders.”

Narcissists have numerous traits of anxiety too. First of all, they are self-centered and think that the entire world revolves around them. They lack empathy and have no regard for others.

These people take advantage of other people, and try to control the power of their victims, due to their exploitative nature.

Narcissists are also preoccupied with success and fantasies, they dream of grandiose things in life, which can easily turn into a generalized anxiety disorder, phobias, and social anxiety disorders.

In case you are a victim of any form of abuse, you should know the first step to stop the abuse is to find at least one close person to talk to and try to find a solution. Then, protect yourself from the abuser in all possible ways.

As soon as the abuse is in the past, your healing process will begin. You need a secure and safe place to start reconstructing your life and curing the wounds.

Yet, remember that the most important thing is to never keep the silence. Seek advice and help instead. It is NOT your fault. Time will heal the wounds, and you will become much stronger in life. You deserve to be respected, loved, and protected.