If you’ve shown up to this page, it’s because you want to share your story and help other people change their lives for the better. That’s very brave of you, so thank you.
However, going through our process can be re-traumatizing, so please do reach out to a friend, counselor or therapist, and discuss your plans on beginning the guest form process of our podcast. You are the only person who can determine your readiness to begin writing and sharing your story.
*** A big warning. Not every episode that we record makes it on air for various reasons. This doesn’t make your experience any less valid than others. If you don’t think you’ll be able to mentally handle it not being on air, it’s best not to start the process. If you NEED your story heard, this is also not the best place to tell your story. Our show is for the benefit of the listener, not for you. Yes, telling your story on our podcast can be a cathartic experience, but we ask that you always think of your role as an educator in this process. ***
If you’ve made it this far, let’s start off with some FYI’s.
1) Everything is anonymous.
2) We record almost everyone, but not every episode makes it on air. If you think you’ll feel too rejected if that happens, then it’s best not to record. Telling a story isn’t easy. Most people are not born storytellers. Our duty is to the audience and not to you.
3) Narcissist Apocalypse has many objectives. The first objective is to make everyone feel less alone by validating what they’ve been through, by what you went through. The second objective is to show how the manipulations worked and why they worked. We believe that people will feel less shame when they see how the crimes were perpetrated against them. The third objective is to give survivors a vocabulary. If you explain your feelings/nuances of the abuse, you are giving a vocabulary to other survivors. Once a survivor has a vocabulary, that can help set things into motion for change. And the final objective is all the little learning lessons. From recognizing tactics, to how you dealt with the abuse, to court, to custody, to escape plans. It’s all helpful, especially the things you learned about yourself in the process. Narcissist Apocalypse isn’t just a show about abuse. To us, it’s a show about self discovery too.
THE 4 TYPES OF STORIES
There are 4 types of stories for our show. Family, Spiritual/Religious/Cult, Friend, & Relationship. For workplace stories, please visit the Toxic Workplace Podcast.
Family stories are the hardest stories to tell. There is no formula for them. Most of them do not have the length that we are looking for and most of them just move from one story to the next to the next. So if you are submitting a family story, please do think about what you want the audience to learn. What is the overall theme? Please reflect on your experience and your feelings. Telling an effective story isn’t just about ‘And then this happened, and then this happened, and then this happened.’ You need to set a scene. A mood. What were the lives like of my family members? Why do they act and react like that? How are these things affecting you outside the home? How do these things eventually hinder your life as an adult? How are you healing? IS there a way that I can create a beginning, middle, and an end. Please think about all these things and send us the bullet points of your story.
For Spiritual/Religious/Cult, Friend, & Relationship stories, they mostly fall into the formula we use below.
Part 1 – Things to think about. What was your life like before the relationship? What was your family life like? What were your relationships like? Were you a people pleaser, a perfectionist, did you fear failure, or have low self-esteem, etc.? Did you have hardcore beliefs about relationships or life? Did you believe that relationships took work? Did you believe that people should always be given second chances? How about getting divorced is shameful? Not everyone has these types of issues beforehand, but we’re doing our best to understand the psychology of why someone stays and why the manipulations work. Set the scene of your life.
Part 2 – This is where trust and ‘love addiction’ are created. Explain how you met. What love bombing and trust-building tactics were used? For example, mirroring, future faking, bonding over shared trauma, being seen for the first time, victim playing (you may be a caregiver), etc. Tell us why you think those tactics worked on you. Were things just so overwhelming that you couldn’t see what was actually happening? How did they plant the seeds of trust? What kind of seeds were they planting to excuse behavior? Were there red flags that were smoothed over? How did they do that? When was the moment you were officially hooked? Was there an event that sealed the deal? What was the biggest bait that hooked you and why?
Part 3 – *** Sometimes this section doesn’t fit every story. Occasionally you have a con person on your hands that is using you for money. They are never devaluing you because they want the golden goose to last forever. However, they usually lead a double life you don’t know about, most likely they are cheating at the very least. *** This is where devaluation usually begins, even though it could happen in part one, as they might be testing boundaries to see what they can get away with. What types of devaluations are you dealing with? How do they smooth it over? How do these things make you feel? What manipulation tactics are used? Why do these tactics work and how do they make you feel? Did tactics change over time? Did you live in fear, obligation, and guilt? Go down this rabbit hole. Were there periods where things were good? Explain the addiction aspect of things if you can. If you got smart to things, did tactics change? What were you thinking about yourself, your partner, the relationship? When did you start losing yourself? With the different tactics, how did you react differently? What are the beliefs and reasons you are staying? Explain the psychology of it all. What’s the hook that keeps you around the most? Are there smear campaigns? Are you being sown the seeds of doubt? etc. Try not to move from story to story to story. Reflect. Dig deep into you.
Part 4 – For many, this is the beginning of the end, and either you are discarded, or you leave. However, for others, this section could be the bulk of your story. In this part, what led up to leaving/the discard and then the whole story of leaving or being discarded? There may be lots of hoovers in this part of your story. Explain the psychology of what was going on with you and the tactics to get you back. Also, there is no shame in going back. You are an addict at this point and addicts have relapses. Tell us about custody, court, financial abuse, divorce, co-parenting, etc. Explain all the post-separation abuse that occurred. Take us through the ups and downs at this stage of your story. Your wins and losses. Triumphs and despair.
Part 5 – Tell us about the aftermath and your healing process. What have you learned about yourself? How have you changed? Words of wisdom and advice.
If you haven’t been scared off, please send your story in bullet points (in this format) to firstname.lastname@example.org or use the form below.