Below will be links to some information and some of A.J’s videos, blogs and her new Podcast, “Pathways To Healing” along with a few of A.J.’s many websites on the internet.
A.J. Mahari has been working as a Counsellor and Coach with Narcissistic Abuse Survivors online since 1995. That’s 24 years of professional experience in helping those with CPTSD, PTSD, codependency, unresolved childhood issues, (if applicable) to process trauma, work through the trauma and release it to heal and change their lives.
A.J. Mahari, herself, was the child and is now the adult child of a 90 year old Mother that A.J. went no contact from in 1990. A.J. at that same time went No Contact with her entire family of origin. A.J.’s Mother is still the same with Borderline Personality Disorder co-morbid with Covert Narcissistic Personality Disorder and she had a Father (deceased) who had all 3 major Cluster B Personality Disorders who was what is known as a Dark Triad “person”. A.J. had one sibling, 3 years her junior. A “brother” who was the golden child to A.J’s being the scapegoated child. In 1987, A.J.’s Golden Child (Narcissist) “brother” followed the rest of the family rule of punishing A.J.
He is just another flying monkey. It was the last time A.J. would ever see her sibling again. It is assumed he is still alive with his codependent wife and it is known he has suffered a lot of physical illness as well in his life. And, his oldest daughter of two, a niece has BPD. A.J. never knew her nieces and does not to this day. She held the oldest once, when she was 4 months old and never would meet the second daughter of her Golden Child Narcissist brother. A.J. shares,
“It was the most devastating, at the time, (siblings are in healthier families supposed to be our contemporaries) of all other on-going devastation back then, that I lost a sibling to this narcissistic family or origin, himself a narcissist, frankly a “mother’s boy” through and through. I came to terms with it and grieved years ago. But, it was one of the most painful losses of my life. Now, I rarely think about him or his family. They are no longer (really never were in anyway, “my family”) and have not been for 30 years plus, in any way shape or form, my “family”. Though it does devastate, and grief is heavy for a time, there is nothing healthier for any of us, then to break away, whether our choice or not and heal ourselves and be who each one of us is truly meant to be. I have made it to the other side of that grief, loss, and the punishment that caused me so much pain. Hatred and punishment that the Narcs still hold, feel, and are invested in to this day. I have nothing to do with it or them. They think they are punishing me, they are hurting themselves. All the no contact I chose and the discard the Golden Child chose, it has been well worth it and as a result I am healthier for it and happier and an empowered strong person who wouldn’t “give nothing for my journey now” (Maya Angelou). We can get away, grow, heal, learn, change and flourish, they, the Narcissists in the Narcissistic Dysfunctional Family of origin cannot. Don’t pity or waste energy on them. You have you to learn to love and care about YOU, precious YOU, and you are worth nothing less.”
A.J. also had a partner in 2003 that was a Borderline/Narcissist and alcoholic. While that relationship was a relatively short one, around a year, A.J. says, “It took me two years to recover from that traumatic abuse – that trauma bond. This person was in a position of authority and groomed and abused me and it took me a while to understand what was happening to me personally. They can so easily fool us, especially that first one in an adult relationship. I was re-traumatized by being invisible. Her failure at every turn due to lack of empathy. Giving love only to be abused in return. Not having anything I ever did, gave, or offered be anywhere near good enough. To being actively gaslighted for most of a year, made to believe everything was my fault, full of self-doubt, toxic shame and toxic guilt. I had been groomed and it was her doing and not my fault. I felt so traumatized and hurt and yes these wounds would intersect with well-healed wounds from childhood and some not so well-healed. I had horrible anxiety and so many Emotional and Somatic flashbacks. (CPTSD) It was a very painful and difficult journey. It was fraught with her demands, petulant child-like behaviour and of course, (as I now am super clear about) her convincing me for a time that all she was doing to me was what I supposedly did to her. I ended the relationship. It was after this relationship, that, I, like so many abused by Narcissists (or other Cluster B’s or co-morbid ones) came face to face with my own issues of codependency, that despite having worked on those issues a lot previously, still needed more work and I had to rise to the challenge of that recovery work as well. The pain left me no other choice. That was a silver lining gift in an otherwise abusive nightmare. That, and that I learned to stop any and all reaction to the way she would set me up to fail me in empathy and punish me with that at the same time.”
A.J. Mahari, is a survivor of massive trauma in her childhood, including childhood sexual abuse from both parents and 3 other known people, at age 3, 5, 5-12 and her father’s sexual abuse from age 8 to just shy of her 13th birthday, (even cult abuse) and despite it all she has been able to find a core resiliency that meant not having to go back to “ground zero” with being re-traumatized in that relationship in adulthood. Just as she did not stay stuck (after age 28) in the early childhood trauma she worked hard on in therapy starting at the age of 16 of her own free will against the “parents” demands that she not ever see a therapist. If you are a survivor of childhood Narcissistic (any cluster B) abuse, know that you can heal and you can find way home to “self” inside and live the life that you so deserve in spite of and yet also because of who you will come to know as you open or continue to open to your healing journey.
I am far from perfect, but, I do now have and have had for 30 years a solid foundation of recovery from CPTSD. Even when we get through to this solid foundation of healing from CPTSD we can still re-experience flashbacks if triggered by another Narcissist or Cluster B person, whether in your family, life, work, your neighbourhood, or someone you might rent from or hire to provide you services (legal, health etc) or in a any group in your community. This is why though I did, and you can recover from CPTSD, PTSD, it is so important to implement boundaries – inner and outer boundaries – to ensure that any future encounter with a Cluster B will not cause us any major relapse and I help people through this process of recovery to a solid foundation of resilience. We may not ever be unscathed by any narcissist in any walk of life but we will recognize them and know how to handle them or cope with them until we can get away from them. Sadly, though, narcissists are increasing and we have an epidemic of Narcissistic Abuse that as we all know so many friends, loved ones, even therapists just do not, at all, understand.
Quick Links For Narcissistic Abuse Survivors
Quick Links to help navigate some of this site.
Whether you are the adult-child of a Narcissist (or any Cluster B) parent, or the partner or ex-partner of a Narcissist, Borderline, or Psychopath, have a Cluster B personality disordered person in your life who is/was a friend, a Landlord, a neighbour, a co-worker, I have experienced it all. I know what it truly feels like to be where you might be right now, in your life, through no fault of your own. You are not alone. I am someone out here that works with clients, tailoring every process with each individual client, who truly gets it. I “get it” mainly, not from my educational background, but, from my own life experience. In fact, right now, I am coping well with 3 narcissists and a couple of flying monkeys plus enablers (not in my personal life) but where I rent and I am holding my ground. I am just learning more and more and want to pay that forward to all who I work with, or who watch my videos, or read my blogs.
I also have a unique expertise in Borderline Personality Disorder. I was diagnosed with BPD at the age of 18, and I recovered fully in 1995 at age 38. The process of coming to understand how I had been so damaged by an inter-generational Narcissistic Abusive Dysfunctional Family of Origin was central to my recovery from BPD. As was making what felt like and impossible choice at the age of 30 to go no contact from my entire family of origin. Hell on wheels at first, but, the best choice I ever made. In that recovery, in 1990, I went no contact with my parents and my entire family of origin. My family of origin was rife with Borderlines, Narcissists and Psychopaths. I was sexually abused, physically abused, psychology/emotionally abused and I was the scapegoat (among each parent’s co-morbidity) of two narcissistic personality disordered parents. It was nothing short of a nightmare. A childhood long gaslighting shame dump that left me not knowing who I was or why I hurt so incredibly much. An all too-common nightmare that all-too many of you also have been through or may still be going through. If we don’t do the healing work, when Narcissistic and/or Psychopathic parent(s) die they will control you via your introjected inner critic (them) and so many become their own emotional abusers taking in so deeply that parental narcissistic abuse, the parentification and/or infantilization – emotional incest – learning also to “people-please” trying to get just a scrap of all you so wanted and needed from a parent or parents who are/were (if passed) Narcissists. Each survivor, childhood Narcissistic abuse has to chose to break the programming of their shame and abuse as does each victim/survivor in an adult relationship with a Narcissistic abuser, whether you also had that Narcissist parent or not.
Each person needs to find their own voice, and not live by the programmed taken on inner critic voice of any Narcissistic abuser. It isn’t easy, it takes time, and the journey begins with the choice and conscious awareness that you want, need and deserve to be free of all of that pain and trauma.
I do work with motivated people with BPD in their recovery journeys. However, this understanding of Borderline Personality Disorder, is from the inside out and BPD Abuse cannot be minimized in any way. What victims/survivors, parents, loved ones or ex-loved ones go through during and after BPD Abuse is also very traumatic. While BPD is not exactly the same as NPD, the abuse is categorized as Narcissistic Abuse as well. I am no apologist, whatsoever, for any form of Narcissistic Abuse, and that includes BPD abuse as well.
My services are best described as Coaching, relating to my clients, as one who has been there, and who understands, with a background in formal education in Social Work and Psychology. I do, however, prefer to work with clients in a very personable, egalitarian, way that is down to earth. I specialize in many modalities and because I tailor them to each client, a specific modality, or an eclectic modality approach, I discuss that with you if you want to contact me to ask more, or in beginning to work with you as a client. I join with my clients on their journey, to help as I can, educate in whatever way will help, as someone who is a kindred spirit and who knows first hand what you so need to have understood, learn more about, heal, and be validated and supported in that process of each individual. Every narcissist leaves all their victims (who become survivors) feeling “crazy” like it IS you and NOT them, that is not the truth. You may still believe that, however. please know, if you don’t yet, that being abused by any (or multiple) Narcissists (Psychopaths or Borderlines or some combination thereof) is not ever your fault. Narcissists actively gaslight their targeted victims to feel crazy and at fault. You are not crazy, and it most certainly is not your fault.