Are you dealing with flying monkeys after a experiencing a toxic relationship with a narcissist? And if you are, how do you tactfully remove them from your life for good without unnecessary drama?
Firstly what the heck is a flying monkey and how do you spot one. A flying monkey is a designated individual or a group of individuals who have been hand picked by your toxic ex to keep tabs on you while you were dating or married to your toxic ex or they might have been swiftly recruited by your toxic ex after the breakup or divorce.
A flying monkey can be compared to the ghoulish monkeys that fought on behalf of the wicked witch of the west in the classic movie the Wizard of OZ. Their one and only purpose, which they are not always aware of, is to keep an eye on your every move and report back o your toxic ex; the good, the bad and the ugly - it's all useful information that your toxic ex the narcissist can and will use against you if they feel that you are perhaps doing better than they expected you to be doing after the breakup or divorce.
These flying monkeys might be recruited from a mutual friend circle, your work colleagues and even your own family members. Your toxic ex the narcissist has probably spent a considerable amount of time researching your relationships to these flying monkey's while you were dating or married to them and also after the initial breakup where they most likely took the opportunity to further befriend the flying monkey (AKA your friends or family members) as a way to gain their trust and to also eventually have them do the dirty work of obtaining personal information about you or any other information they can eventually turn against you by utilizing their favorite tactic and that would be employing a degrading smear campaign that is targeted towards your character and reputation.
There are two-types of flying-monkeys that you need to be aware of:
(1.) The secret groupie who wants to be part of something, anything that makes them feel important, seen or included in the 'click'.
There's always one such flying monkey in a group friends. This is the friend who always wants to buy the exact same clothing and makeup as you. Perhaps they've always wanted to have the same dating opportunities as you, live in the same neighborhood as you or drive the same car as you. This so-called 'friend' has told you on countless occasions how much they admire your life or the lifestyle you've created for yourself; but secretly, behind closed doors, they are jealous of you and everything you represent; and if given the right opportunity, under the right conditions and by someone, such as a manipulative narcissist, who knows how to persuade them they can easily be turned against you and utilized as a valuable flying monkey by your toxic ex.
(2.) The other type of flying monkey is that of the casual acquaintance. This is the individual who is more of a friend with your toxic ex, but you happen to be casual acquaintances by proxy.
This is the individual who will do the dirty bidding of your toxic ex the narcissist because their allegiance and loyalty is with your toxic ex first and foremost. They will be more inclined to believe anything your toxic ex has to say about you, rather than taking the time to think through the facts about the situation on their own, using their own logic and judgment to come to a fair and balanced conclusion. These individuals are often the first ones out of the harem of flying monkeys to create a smear campaign against the target and the last one to come to the defense of a target even when the facts presented are as clear as day. These are the narcissist best allies because they know that anything negative that is communicated to them about you will likely be believed and gossiped about with other individuals from your social circle of friends.
You might be asking, why does my ex want to keep tabs on me if we are no longer in a relationship with one another? And the simple answer to that question is because they are toxic, emotionally destructive and most likely a narcissist. It's an unfortunate situation to experience, but I have always stated that the playground of a narcissist is in the minds of their target. There main goal is to keep you squirming and anxious whether they are in your life or not. Furthermore, another purpose for the narcissist to recruit a flying monkey into their toxic harem of spy's is to make you feel as though you are being watched 24/7 which is also known as low-key surveillance.
The flying monkey in this situation is used, periodically, to keep a close eye on you and all that you are up to on a daily or weekly basis. This type of surveillance is used mostly to gather salacious information about their target in the event they need to use that information against you, for example, in a custody court case, a divorce proceeding or as I stated earlier to tarnish your reputation whether in your personal or professional life; and what's even more dangerous is that often times when a flying monkey is recruited to do the dirty bidding on behalf of your toxic ex, unfortunately, it's often those individuals who are most closest to you.
The end goal of employing low-key surveillance using flying monkey's is to make you, the target, feel paranoid and anxious about your toxic ex's ability to still be able to have access to the most intimate parts of your life, despite the fact that you are no longer in theirs. It's a sinister and invasive tactic that flying monkey's are specifically used for when the narcissist needs more supply from you, but does not have direct access to you the way they once did; and the best way to achieve this goal is befriend those individuals in your life who you trust, but who also have access to intimate, personal areas of your life.
The more evidence, personal information or secrets they can obtain about you and also make it public the better they feel about themselves and their cunning ability to maintain psychological control over you even though they are no longer in your life the way they once used to be. Narcissist and other toxic personality types thrive off this kind of energy because as I stated in a previous article they are by nature energy vampires and any type of energy they can solicit from you whether negative or positive gives them a huge ego boost.
How do you tactfully remove a flying monkey from you life after a toxic relationship?
The best strategy to tactfully remove a flying monkey from your life after dating a narcissist is to become indifferent and train yourself to have thick skin.
I know this is easier said than done when experiencing such a situation on a daily basis, but the more you react to the antics of the flying monkey and your toxic ex the narcissist the more fuel, and energy you are giving to them, which as I stated earlier in this article is the narcissist main goal when they are deploying heir harem of flying monkeys to target you. If you are being targeted through the use of a smear campaign, do not respond to it at all and if you must respond to it please do so with integrity and respect for yourself and others in life who might also be negatively impact by the smear campaign, such as your children.
Your toxic ex and their minion of flying monkeys want to disarm you any way they can, and if they can get you to react with violence, anger or you make one wrong decision to do something without thinking about the actions you are taking it will only serve your toxic ex's agenda in making you look like the crazy, angry ex who couldn't control her temper; thus, your toxic ex comes out of the situation looking like the calm, responsible and sane one in the relationship who was lucky enough to have gotten away from you. Do not fall for this trick. Hold your head up high, live your responsibility and with integrity and keep moving forward. Eventually, people will begin to see that your toxic ex is just a bitter, miserable, and lonely individual who had nothing better to do, than pick on his ex-partner because they are no longer together. I can say this with confidence because I too experienced this very same situation.
However, in some situations you may need to take extra precautions in protecting yourself from the flying monkeys and your toxic ex. If you must, please seek legal advice from a lawyer on how you can best protect your well-being and if needed get yourself a restraining order. This may only be needed in extreme circumstance, but if your livelihood is being threatened, please do get yourself legal protection. Lastly, flying monkeys are simply puppets being strung along by the narcissist. If they were once your friends and are now doing the dirty bidding for your toxic ex, you should honestly ask yourself... were they your friends to begin with?
I hope you enjoyed this week's article and have gained some valuable information to help you move forward with confidence! As a Breakup and Wellness Coach, my work in this world is dedicated to supporting and helping women such as yourself to HEAL, RECLAIM and TRANSFORM your life after leaving a toxic relationship. Do reach out if you would like to discuss how I can support you on your journey of recovery, healing, and transformation.